‘American Idol’ champ Iam Tongi talks rigging accusations


Despite ending the season on a sour note, the newest “American Idol” champion isn’t bitter.

Iyam Tongi, who made history First Pacific Islander As for winning “American Idol,” he wasn’t fazed by the rigging allegations that accompanied Sunday’s win — in fact, he said he “loved it.”

“A lot of people are like, ‘Colin Stough was robbed,’ or whatever. And I love that,” Tongi, 18, explained. Daily Mail.

Tongi, of Samoan and Tongan heritage, won the 21st season finale, beating Stough, 18, and Megan Danielle, 20, but her win shocked fans who claimed the singing competition was “rigged”.

Instead of letting the haters get to him, he “likes” critics’ social media posts, explaining that he “lets those things happen”.

Aim Tongi admits he “loves” the hate he gets online.
ABC via Getty Images

“I’m guilty of liking it,” he admitted. “But look, [my] Music is not for everyone. And I’m going to have to learn that the hard way. “

He inherited his optimistic outlook from his late father, Rodney, who passed away in 2021 before the “Idol” auditions began.

“My dad always told me that your music is not for everyone. There are going to be people who won’t like it and that’s fine, that’s normal,” he added. “Everyone has their own opinion. Everyone thinks what he thinks. So, it’s okay. “

The Post has reached out to Tongi for comment.

Aim Tongi performing on stage
Tongi addressed the “cheating” rumors swirling after Sunday’s final, assuring fans there was no bad blood between him and the talented runner-up.
Barry Mayer / Mega

Ryan Seacrest, Katy Perry, Aimee Tongi, Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan on the American Idol stage
Tongi made history as the first Pacific Islander to win “American Idol.”
ABC via Getty Images

Amid online vitriol, he maintains there is no bad blood between him and the runner-up.

“I love Colin, man, he’s such a kind person. I’m going to see him again, we’re going to jam again and have fun,” he said.

In fact, it makes Tongi “happy” that audiences enjoy different styles of music, he said, and he appreciates fans’ enthusiasm for Stough’s talent.

“They love Colin very much [that they say], ‘He should have won,’ said Tongi. “And it makes me happy, to be honest.”

Aimee Tongi and Megan Daniels
She defeated fellow contestant Megan Daniels.
ABC via Getty Images

Ryan Seacrest and Colin Stough
Some fans claimed that Colin Stough should have won the competition.
ABC via Getty Images

But Tongi isn’t ready to “chase the fans” – he appreciates his fans and the community that continues to support him. He’ll just be himself, do what he likes, have fun and “see whatever happens,” he added.

After his big win, Tongi described the historic moment as “amazing” and thanked voters for the “crazy” experience.

This season was judged by Lionel Richie, Luke Bryan and Katy Perry, the last of whom was the center of backlash and controversy.

An unnamed source told the Daily Mail that the “California Gurls” singer considered quitting the show after producers “threw her under the bus.”

Iam Tongi singing on stage with a guitar
“I love Colin, man, he’s such a kind person. I’m going to see him again, we’re going to jam again and have fun,” Tongi said.

The panel of judges included Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan
Judge Katy Perry has faced online vitriol after her criticisms of “American Idol” contestants went viral.

But Tongi, who shared that she had “a lot of fun” with the reality television judges, said Perry would be missed if she decides to leave.

“Support [Katy] Gives and loves [she] The contestants will miss being given,” said Tongi, who announced that he is working on new music that he is “excited to share.” “I will miss Katy. [if she left]”

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