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'American Idol' Star Chris Medina Always Wears His Fiancée's Ring Around His Neck — Exclusive Interview!

Sat, February 26, 2011 6:20pm EDT by William Earl 2 Comments
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He may not have made it into the top 24, but Chris captured America’s hearts — and he tells us about hope, his future and J. Lo.

Chris Medina certainly comes from humble beginnings — after all, Chicago-based baristas usually don’t shake up the music industry. But after making the nation cheer while singing his heart out for his paraplegic fiancée, he quickly became one of the most inspirational contestants in American Idol history. Chris spoke with at the OK! Magazine Oscar Party Feb. 25 about his wild journey to national consciousness.

Unlike so many reality show participants who feel vilified by the camera, Chris, 27, said his experience on American Idol felt true and represented him perfectly.

“I think the whole experience, and the way they handled the story, they did very well,” Chris said. “I think they were very tasteful, they were so nice. I could tell that it meant a lot to them to portray the story really well. I think they represented me very well, they showed my really good first audition, they showed my really good last audition. I got a lot of air time, I feel really blessed.”

Although the judges can often be harsh on the contestants, Chris said his performances always felt less stressful than if they were overseen by previous judge Simon Cowell.

“I’m really happy with the judges that I had, they all are very sincere, very honest,” Chris said. “They tell you how it is, but it doesn’t hurt. They motivate you to be better. They don’t hurt your spirits.”

In terms of the future, Chris said he is eager to collaborate with other musicians as well as write, produce and record his own music. Whatever his venture, he knows he will have the support of his longtime partner Juliana. When we asked about the necklace he was wearing to the party, he explained, “This is Juliana’s ring right there. I wear it for good luck!”

What a great guy — we think he has a promising career ahead of him!

— Russ Weakland