Journalists on hand for last month’s “X Factor” panel during the Television Critics Association press tour saw Simon Cowell’s female posse of judges – Kelly Rowland, Demi Lovato and Paulina Rubio — spring to his defense when questions turned to the scandal involving Cowell fathering a baby by his former best friend’s wife. Their protectiveness was almost family-like, Rowland agrees.
“I never thought I would say this, but I pretty much think Simon is a cool guy. I’m just – I don’t know anything in detail, but I’m always going to be supportive of him,” she tells us. “I mean, we’re friends, so I would tell him if I thought anything else. Our bond is really interesting because it happened so fast.”
The one-time Destiny’s Child member is even more gung-ho about Demi and Paulina. “I’m just sure Demi has been here on this earth before. We probably talk every other day — myself and Demi. I just adore her, and I knew it as soon as we started talking. I don’t know if it’s Texas that binds us together, or just the fact we’re two southern girls singing.” And of the hot Mexican songstress Rubio, she says, “The fact that she has this adorable little boy is so wonderful. He’s so cute. We had the chance to all hang out. She brings him sometimes. She’s a nice balance for the rest of us. Everybody’s personalities fit. We’re just having fun, that’s all we’re doing.”
Rowland has been flying back and forth between “X Factor” auditions and her own performing dates, juggling her schedule and “just glad it’s all working out.” She doesn’t have the Summer Jam 2013 tour to think about, though. A couple of weeks after Chris Brown dropped out of the tour at the eleventh hour, it was canceled last week amid reports of slow ticket sales.
“You know what, as far as that’s concerned, I’d rather not speak on it because that all didn’t end well and I’m just going to be very professional and not talk about it,” says Rowland. “I definitely wanted to do it, but between everybody not having everything together, it didn’t work out for my benefit and my team’s. And it didn’t happen.”
But she has plenty on her plate. Not only is there “X Factor,” there’s also a follow-up to her 2011 collaboration with trainer Jeanette Jenkins, “Hollywood Trainer: Sexy Abs with Kelly Rowland.” The new DVD, called ”Sexy Abs: Cardio Sculpt,” is due in October.
“Jeanette choreographed this great, great workout — I’m tired when I’m finished, but it’s one of the best things I’ve done since I started working out with her,” Rowland declares. But it’s not just her abs; many envy Rowland’s toned and defined arms.
“I think anyone can have – I call them Michelle Obama arms. She’s actually my inspiration,” says the singer with a laugh.
In fact, Rowland is out in L.A. having meetings on a number of work prospects – including more acting roles. She would love more film and TV opportunities. “X Factor” will certainly be getting her out in front of the public eye when the show has its two-night, three-hour season premiere Sept. 11 and 12.
Having already served as a judge for the British version of “X Factor,” Rowland is already well acquainted with what she considers the most difficult part of the judging job: having to let favorite aspiring talents go.
“That was the hardest, hardest thing. The hardest moment for me – it was over in the U.K. I had the girls’ category and I had to pick between two of my girls and they were both so incredible. I remember thinking to myself, ‘Oh, my God. I don’t want to make this decision.’ You don’t want to have to choose between your contestants, but sometimes you have to,” she notes. “You find you have to think like an executive and ask the questions. Who is going to work hard? Who seems the most hungry for it? You know what I mean?”
According to her, “The contestants this year are really strong. We have about seven — at least– true stars. Ones you kind of gawk over and lose your breath over.”