Sensory Overload

Interview: The X Factor contestant Josh Krajcik

Posted by Chris DeVille | November 02, 2011 10:58 AM

Josh Krajcik and his band
 
Columbus rocker Josh Krajcik wowed the X Factor judges with last week's performance of "Forever Young," earning easy passage into the top 12. He returns to the stage tonight during The X Factor's two-hour performance show, airing at 8 p.m. on Fox. After the first round of public voting, a one-hour results show will air at 8 p.m. Thursday. I spoke with Krajcik yesterday in advance of this week's shows. Here's a transcript of our conversation.
 
Alive: Are you out in L.A. right now?
Josh Krajcik: Yep, I’m in L.A. doing rehearsals.
 
You have to be feeling confident going into the next round, right?
Absolutely. I mean, their comments were—it’s hard not to just have your confidence level just swell with those kinds of comments.
 
Are you worried about overconfidence?
No. One of my strategies has been just to be myself. I’m not very cocky, I don’t think, although sometimes confidence can be mistook as that. Confidence is key when you’re performing. If you don’t have it, it’s visibly obvious.
 
Did you expect the judges to be positive?
Expect probably isn’t the right word. I guess I pictured it happening that way. And it ended up being that way. I’ve been playing around Columbus for seven or eight years, and I’ve been playing in bars since I was 15. So I think experience makes confidence easy.
 
Have you been in Columbus or are you spending all your time in L.A. right now?
I have, but I’ve been kind of laying low. I really honestly didn’t have much time to book any shows. I kind of wanted to stay fresh and work on it for the show anyway. But I miss it. I miss playing for the Columbus crowds a lot. You end up craving it. Sometimes one performance a week’s just not enough, you know? It doesn’t sate my thirst for it.
 
I imagine you’ll be getting a lot more chances to perform regardless of how the contest turns out.
I’m excited about the future, for sure.
 
It seems like after being on a show like this, you won’t be able to play the same places you used to because there will be more interest in you.
It’s like a good problem to have, I guess. It’s also kind of sad. There are ways around it. You can do surprise appearances and word of mouth kind of shows that will be really fun/ I’ll always play in Columbus, it will probably just be bigger venues. I might just have to hang out at my favorite haunts.
 
I saw some people on Facebook were going as Josh Krajcik for Halloween.
I saw that too. That is wild! The one guy nailed it. He had the right contestant number from that first audition. He really nailed it. Bill Patterson (of The Wet Darlings) sent me a picture of it. I guess I’m starting to maybe make it when you’re a Halloween costume. Either that or you’re a flash in the pan trend, but hopefully it’s making it.
 
On last week’s show Nicole Scherzinger mentioned that you kind of disregarded her advice on “Forever Young.”Did you have a good idea of how to handle it?
I had a great idea of how to do it. I think it’s important to mention that I didn’t fully just disregard her advice. I think part of what she meant is, me as a performer, when I get on stage, everything else kind of goes away, and everything kind of becomes the moment. And I think that’s important for me to really excel at what I do.
 
For this next round, do you get to choose your song?
It’s a bit of a collaboration, but ultimately Nicole has the choice, so we’ve discussed, and we have conversations, and we sit down and work, and ultimately she decides what she thinks is going to be best. And usually so far she’s been right. It’s actually refreshing to have an outside ear and brain kind of seeing it from a different perspective. If I were to choose my own song, I might choose something too obvious or too safe. So it’s nice to have somebody to challenge you.
 
I assume you’re not allowed to talk at all about what you’re going to do tomorrow?
Can’t mention what I’m going to do tomorrow because that would be a spoiler. However, I can tell you I feel really great about it and rehearsals have been fantastic. So I really think that people are going to enjoy it. I feel like it’s a little unexpected. It’s easy to do well when a song is that easy to connect to as a singer. And you’ll see what I mean, I think, when you watch.
 
Do you have a way to hear from fans from outside Columbus who have seen you on the show?
Yeah. I’m doing Twitter now, which is new and exciting and slightly frightening at the same time. I’m doing Twitter @joshkrajcik. And of course there’s the Facebook. Honestly, I’m getting messages and well wishes from all over the world. Almost every country you can imagine. I’m swelling with pride. The people are so supportive not only in Ohio and in the States, but really almost everywhere. It’s like a dream come true. It’s unbelievable.
 
When did you decide, I’m going to try out for The X Factor?
I think going into 30, the prospects of being 30 were much scarier than being 30 itself is. When you’re in your 20s, you imagine 30 as this ancient, horrifying milestone, but in actuality, I feel better than I ever have. And I think that maybe it took me until 30 because I just wasn’t ready. I think that you gotta work hard, you gotta be mature, and you’ve gotta have the experience to do well in this business. But I think hitting 30 did make me kind of say you know what, it’s all about what’s best for me, my family and my career. And without a question this competition was the right thing for me to do.
 
Have you been in touch much with your bandmates?
Mostly through text because I’m pretty busy, and the time change stuff, a lot of times it’s harder to connect. But yeah, I miss those guys, I miss playing with those guys, and I can’t wait until we can get back together and jam. I hope to work with those guys again, obviously, because they’re the best. We always have a Halloween party every year, and it was tough to not be there this year. It’s just the way it is — again, another good problem to have.
 
And hopefully after all this is over they can share in some of your success.
I really hope so. That is ideal. That would be ideal.
 
You’re out in L.A., spending your week getting ready for the shows. Is the plan to stay in L.A. full-time until it’s all over?
The plan is to be here for the duration. I think if I’m eliminated I would just come right home. I’m not certain, but that’s kind of how the other eliminations I’ve seen. They go pretty quick.
 
Do they have you guys staying at the same place?
That changes here and there. We’re kind of all over the place out here. It’s good. L.A.’s great. It’s nice and warm here. Although I missed the fall. I missed the leaves changing, and that’s kind of a bummer. But I love Ohio, so I’m sure I’ll see it again next year.
 
Do you feel like you’ve gotten to have some camaraderie with the other contestants?
Absolutely.  In fact, from the beginning of this competition I’ve kind of surprised myself. You go into a competition saying, I’m not really that worried about making friends, or whatnot. But you just can’t help it. I’ve learned a lot of empathy going through this competition and made some really great friends. And some of them are still around and some of them are gone. It’s something that you don’t expect, but it’s kind of a wonderful outcome of this whole process.
 
That’s cool. I’ve seen those montages of reality TV contestants saying, "I'm not here to make friends."
I think you’re preconditioned to think that going in to something like this, but it’s way off. Everybody here has hopes, dreams, desires and fears. As human beings, it’s important to see that in each and every one of us, no matter what the differences or strengths or weaknesses each of us has. Ultimately it comes down to at the end of the day, we’re all trying to win the same prize here at this competition. And in a lot of ways everyone here deserves to win it.
 
Anything else you wanted to say?
Just let everybody know back home how much I appreciate the support and love, and I hope everybody gets to vote… Let everybody know how thankful I am for their support and how much I miss being home.

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