When season 11 of American Idol premiered a year ago, Phillip Phillips was immediately considered an early frontrunner for the title, which of course, he ended up capturing in May.  But he claims that when he first appeared on Idol, he really didn't think he'd be popular at all.

Speaking to Billboard magazine, Phillip says, "I honestly didn't think people would like me -- I didn't care what happened on the show."  Perhaps that attitude is what drew viewers to the Georgia-based singer: he never seemed desperate or too eager to please.

"It never seemed like a competition. I always made sure I was having fun and the band was having a good time," he tells Billboard.  "I didn't give in to what some people give into -- the fame.  I went in, played the song and went back and got in bed."  He says he hopes his victory on the show "opens doors for other singers" like him --  who aren't strictly pop, country or R&B -- "to do the show."

The winner of this year's edition of Idol, whoever he or she may be, can only dream of the kind of success that Phillip has enjoyed.  His single "Home" has sold 3.3 million copies, and his debut album, The World from the Side of the Moon, went gold in six weeks.  He'll be opening for Matchbox Twenty starting January 29, and will then tour as a headliner from March through May, according to Billboard.