On this season's Michael Jackson night on American Idol, Kris Allen wowed viewers with an acoustic version of "Remember the Time."
In reaction, Paula Abdul said: "Kris, I truly believe no one knows Michael's catalog better than you."
Now, in an interview with Newsweek, the Idol chamopn - who started his run on the series with a rendition of "Man in the Mirror" - talks about the influence the late King of Pop had on his career.
On the first time he heard Jackson sing: I was probably 7 or 8 years old. The Dangerous album came out, and I bought it. It was a tape. It kind of stayed in my tape player forever.
On the appeal of Jackson: Every time you listen to this music you get this feeling and you always feel good. And as a kid, that's a captivating thing. His music was so easy to get lost into. I remember being 8 years old and dancing in my room to his music. Trying to dance like him, as well. It was ugly, but it was fun.
On hearing about Jackson's death: We were at rehearsal for the tour. Actually, [Adam Lambert] was on stage. He was almost done, and I was about to go up. We heard the news and we stopped everything and we canceled the rehearsal.
On his favorite Jackson song: I really, really like "Leave Me Alone." It's always been one of my favorites. But I don't know if you pick just one favorite Michael song.