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> Cleveland Plain Dealer 01/24/2006, New Article: Gives Wedding Date
post Jan 24th 2006, 8:46 AM
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Scott Savol

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Birthdate: April 30, 1976.

Personal: Engaged to Rochelle Waddell; a July 8 wedding is planned. Savol has a 5-year-old son, Brandon, from a previous relationship. Savol is the second of four children of Edward and Catherine Savol of Shaker Heights; he has an older sister, a younger brother and a younger sister.

Best part of being on "American Idol": "Exposure! On TV, we sang for 30 million people. We sang in front of more people at one time than Usher or any other big artist."

Worst part: "I have no regrets, really. With regrets, you start thinking about things you would change. I wouldn't change anything. There was one time I sang 'The Impossible Dream' the way they wanted me to do it. It backfired, but I was still on the show."

On turning 30 later this year: "Some people in the industry look at my age as a negative, but I look it as a positive. I know what I want to sing. A lot of young artists just sing whatever you put in front of them, even if they know nothing about it. I can interpret a song, as opposed to just singing it."
The Same Old Scott
'Idol' also-ran making tracks back home

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

John Soeder
Plain Dealer Pop Music Critic

Last year, Scott Savol was on "American Idol," chasing his dream of a big-time music career in front of tens of millions of television viewers.

Last week, he was in a Cleveland Heights house, holed up in a second-floor bedroom that had been converted into a home recording studio.

Not a TV camera in sight. No nasty Simon Cowell nitpicking every move, either.
Savol is still in hot pursuit of the same dream, however.

"Sometimes in life, to win, you have to lose," he says, waxing philosophical from his perch on a folding chair before he gets back to work in the vocal booth.

He doesn't have a record deal. Nonetheless, he's plowing ahead with an album. He hopes to finish it by next month, then start shopping it around to record companies.

Framed photos of Martin Luther King Jr. and Tupac Shakur look down from the walls. The studio is run by William Lynch and his son, Ray. They've known Savol for years, long before he went to Hollywood to compete on "Idol."

"I Do," a romantic ballad written by Savol, is cued up. His soulful voice wafts from the speakers in multitracked harmony:

Say I do
What you feel is true

You mean the world to me, girl. . . .

Smiling approvingly as the refrain builds to a crescendo is Lynch, director of the Cleveland Merchant Music Family, an organization that nurtures aspiring musicians.

"It's going to be the next big wedding song across the country," Lynch says. "Scott's going to have some very hot songs on his CD."

Savol was cut from "Idol" in May, finishing in fifth place on the fourth season of the hit TV series.

"I was there as long as God wanted me to be there," says Savol, 29. A silver cross dangles from the chain around his neck. He's wearing a FUBU jersey, gray sweat pants and sneakers.He fidgets with the Detroit Tigers cap in his hands.

The jersey is a gift from a fan he met last summer on the American Idols Live Tour, which included a sold-out concert at Cleveland State University's Wolstein Center.
For Savol, the road was exhausting.

"We would travel anywhere from two to 11 hours on a bus to the next city," he says. "You would get to the hotel, have a nap, take a shower and go right to the next venue."

These days, Savol sleeps in until about 10 a.m., then heads to the gym.
"I'm getting ready to live up to my 'Scotty the Body' nickname, by my wedding day, anyway," the heavyset crooner says.

Savol and his fiancé, Rochelle Waddell, plan to get married July 8. They live together on Cleveland's West Side.

Four or five nights a week, Savol will put in five hours at the studio. He spends every other weekend with Brandon, his 5-year-old son from a previous relationship.

For the holiday season, Savol recorded a one-off single titled "Upon a Christmas Night," available as a 99-cent download from Cleveland International Records.

"We sold a few hundred downloads," says Steve Popovich, head of the label. "We just did it to test the water."

Popovich, who was instrumental in launching the career of another beefy singer, Meat Loaf, believes Savol has potential.

"He can do well," Popovich says. "A white guy with soul can always do well."

Despite being one of judge Cowell's favorite punching bags, Savol proved to be a tenacious contender on "Idol." When he belted out the Phil Collins hit "Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now)," it could've been his theme song, although Savol had a different take on the tune.

"It made me remember how things were when my grandmother died, how my dad took it, how he was feeling," he says.

Time for

new material

Savol plans to downplay covers on his album in favor of fresh material, penned by himself and others.

"The majority of it will be R&B and pop, with a few club tracks," he says. "It's going to be along the lines of what people heard me do on the show."

"But on another level!" Lynch adds.

Last year's "Idol" champ, Carrie Underwood, is sitting pretty atop the country charts.
"I'm happy for her," Savol says.

He doesn't begrudge the success of runner-up Bo Bice, either.

"I've tried to call him a few times, but he's so busy," Savol says.

How about Constantine Maroulis? He'll be in town Thursday for a gig at House of Blues with his band, Pray for the Soul of Betty.

"I haven't stayed in touch with him," Savol says. "We had a few problems on the tour, but we left on cool terms. I may drop down there when he's here, just to say, 'What's up?'

"There were a lot of issues on the tour, just people whose personalities changed."
Savol won't go into details.

"People tried to say I changed, too," he says. "It's not me who changed. Your idea of me changed, because now I'm Scott from 'American Idol,' not Scott who's just walking down the street."

"You look at me differently. And everything you see me do looks different because you're not looking at me in the same light as you did a few years ago."

Life is different

in little ways

Surely his life isn't entirely the same?

"Well, my credit is better," Savol says, laughing. He used to work as a security guard. For the time being, he's living off his "Idol" earnings.

He often gets recognized in public, too.

"Some people just whisper as they're going by, which is fine," he says. "Other people walk up and say, 'Hey, you're that guy from "American Idol!" ' They want to get your autograph and to take pictures."

The fifth season of "Idol" is under way, airing Tuesday and Wednesday on WJW Channel 8. Savol videotaped last week's premiere.

"I watched a bit of it when I got home from the studio," he says. "A few girls sounded pretty good, but it'll be a guy who wins this year, just because they've already had three girls win."

Savol recently returned to the small screen to hawk a karaoke machine on the QVC shopping network.

In October, he sang the national anthem before the Browns-Bears game at Cleveland Browns Stadium, where Savol's "Idol" journey began with an August 2004 audition. He performed at a local bridal fair this month. On Friday, Feb. 10, he'll headline a concert at the Shore Cultural Centre in Euclid.

There is talk of booking him on the county-fair circuit in the summer.

If all of this seems like a bit of a comedown after basking in the coast-to-coast spotlight of "Idol," Savol isn't complaining.

"I've moved on from the show," he says. "I didn't win. Big deal. I'm free to do what I want now.

"I just know there's no reason for me not to be up there with Carrie and Bo. Once we're done with this album, we'll be up there, too."

To reach this Plain Dealer reporter:
[email protected], 216-999-4562

This post has been edited by Houston52: Jan 24th 2006, 9:10 AM

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post Jan 24th 2006, 8:46 AM

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post Jan 24th 2006, 10:05 AM
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aww how sweet. heart.gif
the songs look great!


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post Jan 24th 2006, 12:53 PM
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QUOTE(Kenni2009 @ Jan 24th 2006, 10:05 AM) *

aww how sweet. heart.gif
the songs look great!

yes.gif kiss.gif kiss.gif kiss.gif

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