Danny Gokey Sees Music, Charity Work Ahead After 'Idol'
Hey may be off "American Idol," but Danny Gokey has big plans that he can't wait to get underway in the wake of his success on the show.
"I would like to start a movement with my music," the Top 3 finisher told reporters on a conference call Thursday, the day after he was eliminated from the show. "I didn't get in this thing for the money. I didn't get into it so I could live this glamorous lifestyle. Does that come with this career? It will...But I feel like my vision is a little different. Maybe it didn't line up with the goals of what ('Idol's' producers) see as a pop star. I'm OK with that.
"I was a nobody, and this show turned me into somebody. I do believe the best is yet to come for me. This is not the end of the road."
Gokey said his first order of business now is to get back to his home town of Milwaukee and start work in earnest with his Sophia's Heart Foundation, named for his late wife who passed away in July after her third heart surgery. "I want to call my team and get my focus laid down," he explained. "I want to define our goals. I want to grow this foundation because (it) means so much to me." Gokey, whose eyeglasses became his trademark on the show -- he started with 15 and now has more than 50, he said -- spoke of starting his own line of eyewear and using the proceeds to help fund the foundation.
He also talked about creating multi-media concerts that would tie in his performances with stories about people the foundation helps. "I want to entertain people," Gokey said, "but have people come out of their zones a little bit...(and) walk away feeling good, but not a temporary good. They're gonna want to make a change."
Gokey, who said he felt going into the week that he would be eliminated, is also ready to make music. "I want to mix a very soulful album with nice beats, nice R&B beats...that get people's heads moving and mix it with the hint of a Latin vibe," he says citing his wife's Puerto Rican heritage as an influence. "I'm so into salsa and meringue and all the Spanish music, and I want to mix it all in one arena for me.
"I know there's a lot of creativity, and I can't wait to express it in the way I want to express it."
He did, however, address the "Dream On" scream from the May 5 episode that "Idol" fans have taken to referring to as "Scream On," conceding that "maybe it was the downfall" of his run, even though he lasted another week. Gokey is, however, amused by the photo circulating online of him performing the song, noting that "it looks like it's from a horror film. I think it's just great. People need to look at it if they want to laugh. It's so funny..."