Kelly Clarkson: ‘The Hardest Part of Being a Pop Star Is Just to Be Me’
Kelly Clarkson is almost as famous for her candor as she is for her powerhouse pipes. When the 'American Idol' alum sat down on NPR's 'All Things Considered' this week, Clarkson -- who has gone on record saying she hates talking about herself -- was in rare form, dishing on everything from eating disorders to guns to politics. She also revealed that maintaining her own identity may be the toughest part of pop stardom.
"It’s really hard, because I think people, you know, have a set idea of what a pop star should be," Clarkson told NPR (via Idolator). "And my whole point is like, well, if I’m the pop star, then it should be whatever I am."
Fair enough. So who is Kelly Clarkson? For one, she's a gun enthusiast, revealing that she even sleeps with a Colt 45! "I live alone, so I’m not going out like that," Clarkson said. "I got no chance if some man breaks into my house.”
Her stance on gun control may also explain, at least in part, why she's drawn to Ron Paul. “You know, he was on Leno, and I was like, man, I like this dude," she said of the Republican presidential hopeful. "I liked him the last time around. He believes in states having their rights, and I think that that’s very important. And I’ve always been about less government, and so I like him." Unfortunately, as simple as Clarkson wishes that explanation was, it may not have been the one the media wanted. "That’s all I said," Clarkson continued. "I was like, oh, man, I like Ron Paul. Too bad he’s probably not going to get the nomination, but I, you know, I like him. And then the whole freakin’ world, like, it went into a frenzy.”
Following her praise for Paul came more scrutiny on her record sales. Did they increase? Did they drop? Does she care? “I did enjoy the sales, I’ll tell you that," Clarkson said. "I was like, hell, I’m going to start endorsing everybody… I was like I’m just going to start saying names about stuff to get people to buy my album.”
Based on her talent alone, Clarkson shouldn't have to say anything about anyone to move copies -- she should just be able to sing! However, she knows that visuals play a large role in record sales, a lesson she learned before 'Idol' when she turned down her first record deal. “The one contract that I was offered – this was my favorite thing ’cause I deal with it on the daily now – I literally weighed 124," Clarkson said about her fluctuating size. "They told me if I lost 20 pounds that they’d sign me. And I was like, wow. And I had, like, an eating disorder in high school for a bit, so it’s like, I think God kind of put me through that to, you know, make me stronger for when situations like that kind of come up and still come up, obviously.”
Clarkson knows that being a pin up helps in her industry, but she'd rather be herself. And more power to her! "There’s, you know, room for Katy Perrys and Adeles and Rihannas and Lady Gagas and Keshas and me and Pinks," she said. "I think what’s great about all of us is that we represent something different.”