LONDON – Singing sensation Susan Boyle says she's untroubled by people drawing contrasts between her angelic voice and dowdy image after she was thrust into the international spotlight.
The unlikely star, who sprung to fame after her appearance on a British televised talent competition became an online hit, said she loves the attention and isn't bothered by those who poke fun at her unpolished appearance.
"It goes with the territory," Boyle told the Associated Press on Friday. "It doesn't bother me."
In a telephone interview from her home in the Scottish town of Blackburn, Boyle did express some impatience with questions over her love life: The 47-year-old Scot raised eyebrows when she told a British television audience on Saturday that she'd "never been kissed."
"It was said as a joke, not an advert. Can we move on?" Boyle said, laughing. And as for the flood of attention — with fans and even competition judge Piers Morgan offering to give her a peck — Boyle said she's flattered, but isn't letting herself be carried away.
"If people want to kiss me, it has to be controlled," she said, still chuckling.
Morgan took part in an interview Boyle via satellite with U.S. cable channel CNN. He asked her to have dinner with him in London — and she accepted — according to a transcript released ahead of her appearance Friday night on "Larry King Live."
The talent judge also apologized to Boyle not giving "anything like the respect we should have" until she began to sing. "I had never heard a more surprising, extraordinary voice coming out of somebody so unexpected," Morgan said.
Boyle, on CNN, asserted that she wouldn't be opting for a new look. "Why should I change?" she said, according to the transcript. But she conceded, when King mentioned that she's been receiving a lot of fan mail: "I certainly won't be lonely anymore."
The massive media attention being lavished on Boyle virtually guarantees her a spot in the final rounds of "Britain's Got Talent," the U.K. version of "America's Got Talent."
Bookmakers are betting on it: Ladbrokes slashed their odds from 11/10 to 1/2 that the Scottish chanteuse would make it out as the eventual winner. Paddy Power cut their odds on a Boyle victory to 5/6.
Simon Cowell, who judges the show alongside Morgan and actress Amanda Holden, had to go on British morning television to remind viewers that the competition wasn't a "one horse race."