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Fantasia Barrino appears in an undated promotional photo posted on her Facebook page in February 2011. - Provided courtesy of facebook.com/Fantasia

Fantasia Barrino of 'American Idol': 'I'm having a boy'

10/12/2011 by Corinne Heller

Former "American Idol" winner Fantasia Barrino, who is pregnant with her second child, has revealed she is expecting a boy.

The 27-year-old R&B singer, who in 2004 became the only single mother to win "American Idol," has a 10-year-old daughter, Zion. She announced her second pregnancy during a charity concert in Florida in July.

"I'm having a boy," Barrino recently said via telephone on "The Wendy Williams Show." "I'm due December 29. I'm at home. I'm on bed rest right now. I'm watching a lot of 'Wendy Williams' right now."

Barrino has not revealed the name of her baby's father. She was last linked to a man named Antwaun Cook. His ex-wife, Paula Cook, claimed in court last year that Barrino had had an affair with her husband in August 2009 and that it had spurred the couple's divorce. Barrino acknowledged the relationship but said that the man had told her he was separated at the time.

When asked if she was still with Cook, Barrino told Williams: "I'm not going to talk about that."

Barrino has in the past said that the scandal helped spur her to attempt suicide in August 2010. She was rushed to the hospital after overdosing on sleep medication and aspirin.

"I think I was just overloaded with everything, with carrying six years of so much," Barrino said on ABC program "Good Morning America" at the time. "I always take a licking and keep on ticking. It just became heavy for me to the point that I just wanted to be away from the noise. The first little piece of drama that they can find, it blew up so much and I just began to get tired of taking so many licks."

Barrino was a 19-year-old impoverished single mother when she auditioned for the third season of "American Idol," which aired in 2004. Her daughter, Zion, was 2 at the time.

Barrino, a North Carolina native, always wanted to become a singer and sang in her church's choir as a child. She dropped out of school when she was in the ninth grade and revealed in her 2005 memoir, "Life Is Not A Fairy Tale," that she still could not read well as an adult.

She wowed judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson on "American Idol" consistently with her performances. But Barrino was criticized by viewers who felt her upbringing, education and status as a single mother made her a bad role model.

Since appearing on "American Idol," Fantasia has released three albums and won a Grammy in February for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance for her single, "Bittersweet," although she opted not to attend the Grammy Awards ceremony. She performed at the 2011 Essence Music Festival in New Orleans.

Barrino also began an acting career after her "American Idol" victory. She appeared in the musical "The Color Purple" on Broadway and played herself in a 2006 Lifetime television movie that is based on her memoir. In 2010, she appeared in a VH1 reality show, "Fantasia For Real."

Barrino was also supposed to film a biopic about late gospel singer and civil rights activist Mahalia Jackson, but says investors had backed out.

"I started studying this woman," she told Williams. "I feel about her the same way I feel about Aretha Franklin. I wanted to give this woman my all so I began to gain weight, I began to study her. And then they called us back in January and said the investors had backed out. Never heard anything from them."

"There were no contracts signed and there was no set date and time," she added. "There's nothing in black and white. We waited on them and they said the money didn't come through. I wanted to make the family proud and most of all, I wanted to make Mahalia Jackson proud and my fans and everybody who's been following me."

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