American Idol: Paul Jolley Not Surprised By Elimination

'American Idol' Season 12 contestant Paul Jolley -- FOX

Paul Jolley was eliminated from "American Idol" last night and the singer says he wasn't shocked to learn he'd be going home.

"I was not surprised to hear my name called tonight," he told Access Hollywood after the show on Thursday. "I'm telling everyone -- I had a moment this morning when I woke up and I realized like, this is what is going to happen.

"So I was already prepared for everything and I've realized that it's only a stepping stone and this is only the beginning and there's a lot more things that I want to do with my career then just 'American Idol,'" he added.

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The Tennessee native performed a slowed version of the Beatles' classic "Eleanor Rigby" on Thursday's show and said -- though the judges said he didn't seem connected to the song -- he was keenly aware of the heart-breaking, lonely theme of the song and felt he gave it his all.

"I was very pleased with my performance. I felt the emotion, everything that I was singing, every word and every lyric," he told Access. "I connected with [it] and the reason I rearranged the song the way it was rearranged, with the deep drum, [is because] I wanted that to be the heartbeat."

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Adding, "I wanted people to feel the emotion -- someone died in this song. During the beginning of the song, everyone feels alone, no one's ever appreciated and no one should ever feel that way and everyone should know, big or small... that's why I sang it the way I sang it. I wanted the emotion to come across that way and I feel like I did and I'm very proud of myself."

He later performed Heart's "Alone" for the "judges' save," but the panel opted not to keep the singer in the competition.

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Despite the rejection, Paul said he was appreciative of advice from the judges.

"[Their wisdom] means a lot to me and I understand that everything they've told me, they're not just telling me that just because it's good for their health. They're giving me advice that I can grow with and become the better artist - and not only just an artist," he told Access, adding that he has big plans for his future. "I want to be in movies, I want to be a clothing designer, I want to do everything. You name it, I'm going to do it and put my stamp on it."

"American Idol" continues next week on Wednesday, on FOX.

-- Erin O'Sullivan

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