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Last night on American Idol it was The Boy Next Door vs. The Southern Belle as Scotty McCreery the 17-year-old from Garner, NC and 16-year old Lauren Alaina from Rossville, GA – the youngest finalists ever – went head to head in the only all-country finale in Idol history.

To kick off finale week, judge Jennifer Lopez took the stage immediately after leaving her figure skating practice in a green sparkly leotard looking umm… dress and Ryan Seacrest fancied it up in an impeccable tux. I don’t know what Randy Jackson was wearing, but it was something… In a shocking bit of information we learned that Lauren sprained her vocal chords during rehearsals! In fact, TMZ reported yesterday that 2nd-runner up Haley Reinhart was backstage and ready to take Lauren’s spot in the case she wasn’t able to perform. The AI doctor however came onto the stage to let us know that Lauren had been heavily medicated but he felt she would be able to perform just fine.

Each finalist went through three rounds performing three different songs with the judges deciding who won each round as part of their critique. Round One consisted of the contestants choosing their favorite song of the season. Scotty went first singing, Montgomery Gentry’sGone” giving a show-stopping performance. Then Lauren took the stage singing her rendition of “Flat On The Floor” in a saucy, high-energy performance. The judges determined that even thought it was close Scotty took round one, with Randy saying he felt like he was at a “Scotty concert.”

In Round 2, AI added a new twist by having the Idol’s own idols choose a song for the contestants to perform. Scotty’s musical idol, George Strait, chose “Check Yes or No.” Scotty played guitar himself during the performance and personally, I love this song and I thought he did a great job. Lauren’s idol was none other than past Idol winner Carrie Underwood who chose Pam Tillis’ “Maybe It Was Memphis” for her to perform. Lauren accompanied the song with a Grand Ole Opry style dress and cowboy boots. Round Two went to Lauren only because she is prettier than Scotty according to Steven Tyler! Actually all the judges felt she did a fantastic job with her rendition of the song and were really impressed with her performance.

Round 3 featured each contestant’s first single if they win American Idol. Jimmy Lovine explained how they chose each song for the idols. Scotty’s single “I Love You This Big” was a country ballad sure to get the teenaged girl army swooning as the Country Beiber crooned into the microphone. The judges felt the song really exemplified Scotty’s range and how far he has grown in the competition. Lauren’s single, “Like My Mother Does” was a special homage to her mom. During the performance Lauren walked off stage with a Seacrest escort and found her mom in the audience, giving her a hug. Both Lauren and her very proud mama were moved to tears. The judges loved it with Randy announcing: “Lauren Alaina has arrived America!” Despite her vocal injury Lauren aced Round 3, as well, with the judges deciding she had won it hands down.

Tomorrow AI comes to a close with a live 2-hour Season Finale and the winner is confetti’d!

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