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Mariah Carey: Being on 'Idol' Was Like Being in Hell

Lyndsey Parker
Yahoo TV

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Mariah, smiling in Hell [photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images]

Mariah Carey's new single may be titled "The Art of Letting Go," but apparently she's still holding on to some residual bitterness when it comes to her short-lived "American Idol" days — since she basically just went on the radio and called her former Season 12 co-star Nicki Minaj the devil.

At least, we can assume she meant Nicki Minaj. Mariah wouldn't ever say such nasty things about sweet, sweet Keith Urban, would she?

So, in a frank new interview with Hot 97 DJ Angie Martinez (who, ironically, was hired to be a judge on "Idol" Season 2, but quit after a few days), Mimi made it very clear that she's delighted to be emancipated from her old television gig. "Honestly, I hated it," she told Angie, when asked about "Idol."

"I thought it was going to be a three-person panel. They gave me a nice dangling monetary moment. [Editor's note: an $18 million salary for one season!] And I was like, 'OK, Randy Jackson will be there, and I've known him forever.' He used to play bass for me. [Editor's note: Randy also managed Mariah at the time.] But it wasn't that. It was like going to work every day in Hell with Satan," Mariah said with a devilish laugh.

Mariah also went on to criticize the show's behind-the-scenes shenanigans, saying: "You know what I loved? I loved the contestants, and some of them were so good and also good people, and it was disappointing when for political reasons they would not put people through. I was like, 'I don't have to do this; I would rather just put this person in the studio and record a record with them tomorrow'...But that's the way it is on that kind of TV thing."

Mariah's "Idol" chatter begins around the 10-minute mark below:

Mariah isn't the first ex-"Idol" judge to diss the show. Season 10/11 cast member Steven Tyler also once told the press that he "loved and hated" being on "Idol," and that the job was "just something to do" while he was on hiatus from his feuding Aerosmith mates.

While Nicki has yet to respond to Mariah's latest barb, Her Minajesty has never been one to mince words when it comes to Mimi (remember when she called Mariah "bitter and insecure" on Twitter?), so watch this space.

In the meantime, Steven's former co-star Jennifer Lopez will be joining Keith Urban and Harry Connick Jr. on "Idol" next year, and judging from a Season 13 preview, it looks like there will be positive vibes all around. Hopefully none of those judges will think being on the "Idol" set is like being in Hell.

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