Mariah Carey on American Idol: "It Was Like Hell"

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Mariah Carey has some strong opinions about her stint as a judge on American Idol...and she's not afraid to share them!

“Honestly, I hated it,” she told Hot 97 radio when asked about her experience judging season 12 of the talent competition, alongside Randy Jackson, Keith Urban, and most controversially, Nicki Minaj.

“I was led to believe -- I was the first person signed on,” she said, “Heaven forbid I look like I’m saying something negative, but honestly, I thought it was going to be a three-person panel. They gave me a nice dangling monetary moment...This isn’t a big deal. This will be nothing. But it wasn’t that. It was like hell. It was like going to work every day in hell with Satan.”

So, to put it mildly, she disliked the job.  Despite her negativity towards fellow judges, she loved the aspiring singers she worked with.

“I loved the contestants,” she said, “And some of them were so good, and also really good people.”

Unfortunately, she felt that politics hindered talented people from moving on in the competition. “It was disappointing when they would -- for political reasons -- not put [contestants] through. And I’m like, I’m not going to sit here and do this. I would prefer to put this person in a studio and record a record with them.”

Both Carey and Minaj have left Idol, and the new panel features judges Urban, Harry Connick Jr., and Jennifer Lopez

Watch the full interview below: 

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About this author

Cristina Arreola, Associate Editor

Cristina Mari Arreola is the Associate Editor. Originally from El Paso, Texas, she earned her degree at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University before moving to New York City. In her downtime, you can usually find her scouring the city for the most authentic Mexican food (still looking), scaring herself silly watching horror movies, or frantically reading a novel from her (extremely lengthy) reading list. See what she's reading now on Goodreads, and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

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