Four years ago, American Idol Season 1 contestant Nikki McKibbin was caught in the clutches of a serious cocaine and alcohol addiction. She ended up appearing on VH-1′s Celebrity Rehab and Sober House where she shared the story of a dysfunctional parent relationship in which she would do lines with her mom. She was my favorite washed-up celeb and the only one that I thought would have a chance of making it.
I don’t know if she’s sober today; I don’t know if any addict stays sober when they are paid to go through televised rehab. Maybe she just switched her drug of choice from Jack Daniels to Fritos. What I do know is this: She’s got a killer voice and I hope we hear from her again.
Obviously, McKibbin’s appearance last night at the AI finale is a drastic change from a few years ago. The truth of the matter is this: If you can sing, if you have talent, people don’t care if you look slightly like a fetish-wear model shop at Lane Bryant. Jessica Simpson got vilified in the media when she ballooned to a size eight because she has the talent of a potato. People aren’t that harsh to Kelly Clarkson because she’s got pipes.
Conclusion: Nikki, don’t let anything hold you back. Get in the studio, pronto!
In a new interview with Us Weekly, Nikki McKibbin — who’s on the upcoming season of Celebrity Rehab — talks about the role Simon Cowell played in her downward spiral.
“I came out of Idol with a lack of self-confidence,” she says. “I think I had my first solo in school when I was 5, and I got more as I got older: That’s the biggest compliment in choir. I had never been told I wasn’t good enough. Having to hear it for so many weeks from Simon Cowell killed me inside. I couldn’t get the shit he had said to me out of my head … It drove me deeper into my depression. I wouldn’t say that this was Simon’s fault. It just added to the addict that I already was.”
She also talks about drinking while on AmIdol: “We were heavily chaperoned, but I would buy vodka and sneak it into the refrigerator on the bottom floor,” she says. “If I wasn’t too exhausted, I’d have one or two drinks.”
Nikki claims she’s still sober, and I do have to give her props for not being all like “This is American Idol’s fault!” She’s owning up to her own addictions, and I respect that way more than all of the celebs who want to blame their drug and alcohol problems on something else.
Star magazine reports that AmIdol’s first season rocker, Nikki McKibbin, was hospitalized in a psych ward in February after a suicide attempt. After limited musical success and the death of her mother in August, it sounds like things were just feeling impossible for Nikki.
Nikki called a friend and told her that she was feeling depressed and wanted to kill herself. The report states that Nikki said, “I want to live with my mom in heaven” and took migraine medication to “dull the pain.”
Tipped off by Nikki’s friend, police arrived to find the former Idol hopeful half-dressed with a number of white pills in her hand. After a violent confrontation â€” during which she reportedly tried to kick out the windows of the cop car — she was taken to the John Peter Smith Hospital and placed under psychiatric observation for the required 72 hours before being released.
Aw, sweetie, if it’s any consolation, I love love LOVED you on AmIdol. I voted for you every week. Yeah, it’s true, and I’m admitting it here, in a very public forum, just in case it’ll go any way toward making you feel better. I fucking voted for American Idol, and I voted for you, Nikki! I hope you feel better way soon.