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DEC
23
3 YEARS

'X Factor's' Josh Krajcik Sets His Sights on a Grammy; Wishes He Hadn't Done the Group Songs (Video)

The Fox singing competition's runner-up reflects on the season, winner Melanie Amaro, and discusses how important Etta James is to him.

Josh Krajcik certainly brought some musical authenticity to Fox’s The X Factor with his ability to cross musical genres, skillfully play the guitar and piano, as well as the 15 years he says he has put in to his musical career.

PHOTOS: 'X Factor' Finale -- The High and Low Notes

“I think it helped me get this far, to have the experience playing bars, countless gigs in bars for the last 15 years, I think gives me an edge,” he tells reporters after Thursday night’s finale. “I think that experience and just comfort on a stage got me to be the runner-up to The X Factor.”

Josh says he’s extremely happy for winner Melanie Amaro, but explains that losing the $5 million contract won’t stop him from continuing on with some ambitious musical goals.

VIDEO: 'X Factor's' Simon Cowell on Cutting Melanie Amaro: 'I Royally Screwed Up'

“My goal in my career is not $5 million,” he says. “My goal is to make fantastic records, perhaps someday win a Grammy. A Grammy, that’s the dream goal. So, $5 million won’t exactly help me get there, though it’s a nice start.”

The Ohio native says he’s proud to have been part of show, but he wished he could have performed more soul classics. “I wanted to do maybe some Marvin Gaye, some Otis [Redding] or some Sam Cooke,” he admits. “Those are really fun to sing and I wanted to do that.”

VIDEO: 'X Factor's' Melanie Amaro: 'I've Come So Far From Where I Was' 

And on the flip side of that, he admits that the group performances weren’t his favorite parts of the competition. “If I could have never done [the ensemble pieces], I’d be a happy man.”

Though, he adds, “They were fun in hindsight. Looking back, I’m glad I did them. There’s nothing I regret. There’s nothing I regret doing. I didn’t compromise myself.”

VIDEO: THR Cover Lounge Chat: 'X Factor' Finale; What Went Wrong

Josh originally won the judges over during his first audition when he performed Etta James’ “At Last.” Last week, the legendary singer was reported to be terminally ill and Josh was excited when The Hollywood Reporter asked him to talk about the woman whose song bookended his X Factor experience. On Wednesday, the performers sang their audition songs in their entirety as the last competitive performance of the show.

“Etta James is a big inspiration to me as an artist,” he tells THR. “She to me is the epitome of just American soul. And my heart goes out to her and her family and I wish her and her family the best. She is not only the inspiration to me prior to this competition, but the fact that it’s where I began in this competition and where I decided to end it, it’s a testament to how much she means to me. And how much my heart goes out to her.”

Watch Josh’s interview above.

Email: Jethro.Nededog@thr.com; Twitter: @TheRealJethro