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Crystal Bowersox

Lee Dewyze American Idol Finale

The ninth season of American Idol came to a dramatic end last night as Lee DeWyze was crowned the Idol winner, beating out favorite Crystal Bowersox.

Lee, a shy 24-year-old painter from Chicago, appeared shell shocked after being announced the next winner of AI by host Ryan Seacrest.  “This is amazing!” said Lee. “Thank you guys so much for everything… I can’t believe this… I’m so happy right now. I’ve never been happier in my life!”

Lee continued, “Throughout the season, the word ‘confidence’ has come up with me a lot. I think looking confident and being confident are two different things for me,” he said. “If I wasn’t confident, I wouldn’t be able to do this.”

However the night wasn’t all about Lee, as it was also judge Simon Cowell’s last night on the hit show. Simon, who is leaving AI after eight years to become a producer and judge on the American version of The X Factor, set to debut in 2011, got a bit teary eyed during his farewell.

“I didn’t think I was going to be this emotional, but I genuinely am,” said Simon as he joined past AI contestants onstage. “The show will go forward, it’ll be different, but I just want to thank you for the support, the fun and… everyone, your sense of humor, thats what’s been the best part.”

Along with past Idol contestants, former judge Paula Abdul also returned to bid farewell to Simon.  The finale show also included a hot performances by Janet Jackson, Christina Aguilera, Alice Cooper, and Alanis Morisette, as well as a surprise performance by rocker Bret Michaels.

TELL US:  DID THE RIGHT CONTESTANT WIN AI? WHO DO YOU THINK WILL HAVE A BETTER SINGING CAREER?

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The final 2 battle has been set on American IdolCrystal Bowersox and Lee DeWyze are the last two standing and will battle each other for the “American Idol” title next week.

With over 47 million votes cast, eliminated last night was Casey James, a native of Forth Worth, Texas. “I never thought I’d get this far,” said Casey to Ryan Seacrest. “But to me, it’s like winning $10 million in the lottery and $100 million in the lottery. It’s so much more than I expected, so it can’t be bad.”

Lee was the first to be announced safe last night, which was no surprise judging by his amazing performance of Leonard Cohen’s classic “Hallelujah” on Monday night.  A performance which moved both the judges and the audience.

And while Crystal, 24, has been the front runner all season, Lee, 23, is steadily catching up. Judge Randy Jackson said Wednesday that Lee had “blossomed beyond belief” since the start of the season.

Next week is the two-part finale during which the 2010 “American Idol” will be crowned live on May 26, and will win a recording contract.

TELL US: WHO SHOULD WIN THE AMERICAN IDOL TITLE? CRYSTAL OR LEE?

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Michael Lynche found himself the latest hopeful to be eliminated from American Idol on Wednesday night.

The 26-year-old St. Petersburg, Fla. native also known as Big Mike was touted one of the early favorites to win the show. However his numerous appearances in the bottom two made his elimination not so surprising.  According to Ryan Seacrest, almost 37 million votes were cast this week, the most this season.

“It’s been unbelievable, man,” he said. “I just sit here right now and I think, ‘I wasn’t even supposed to be here.’ Thank God for the judges saving me, I got to spend more time here, and be with the people, perform for my wife, you know? It’s all good, man.”

Michael had performed Michael Jackson’s “Will You Be There” on Tuesday’s movie-themed performance night.

And this brings up to the final three.  Casey James, Lee DeWyze, and Crystal Bowersox now have a one in three chance of winning a $1 million recording contract. The three will also be filmed visiting their home towns and their fans next week.

TELL US: WHAT IS BIG MIKE’S TIME TO GO HOME?  WHO DO YOU THINK WILL WIN IT ALL?

AARON KELLY

17-year-old Aaron Kelly saw his luck run out Wednesday night as he was the latest hopeful to be eliminated from American Idol.

Aaron’s rendition of “Fly Me to the Moon” failed to impress the home viewers after a tough Frank Sinatra-themed week for the five remaining Idols. “I’ve had a great time. I’ve had a blast,” said a shocked Aaron upon hearing the news of his elimination.

Rounding up with bottom two with Aaron was surprisingly Michael Lynche, despite receiving praise from the judges for his performance of “The Way You Look Tonight.” Actor and singer Jamie Foxx will be on the show next week to mentor the 4 remaining finalists.

In other Idol news, ratings continue to dip for the show, in what some are calling the worst season ever. The ratings have dropped a drastic 20% in just the last three weeks.

That is not the worst news however, as a new report shows Tuesday’s episode brought in the lowest ratings for the show since 2002. The Tuesday night show averaged 17.1 million viewers, compared to Dancing With The Stars which averaged 19.6 million viewers this week.

Some are wondering whether the departure of longtime host Paula Abdul and the pending exit of Simon Cowell, might be part of the reason for the ratings dip. What a lot of people seem to agree on however is that this season has a lackluster of contestants.

The reason I can’t bring myself to like Idol is simply because I feel the judges nitpick the contestants’ performances. And then we have the four judges giving very conflicting criticism to the contestants. I mean hello, are they all not watching the same performances? But that’s not all. The judges also seem to play favoritism, giving constant, sometimes undeserved, praises to their favorite contestants. Think Crystal Bowersox and Michael Lynche this season. It seems these two were made to be the frontrunners very early on the season. So the question is why waste my time watching for 12 weeks if Crystal and Michael will likely be in the final 2?

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TELL US – WHAT DO YOU THINK IS TO BLAME FOR AMERICAN IDOL’S LOW RATINGS?

American Idol Siobhan Magnus

Despite being an early front runner, Siobhan Magnus is the latest singer to be eliminated from American Idol.

The quirky 20-year-old Massachusetts native found herself in the bottom three with Casey James and Michael Lynche, despite receiving praises from the judges Tuesday night for her rendition of Shania Twain’s ‘Any Man of Mine.’ She was the lowest vote-getter out of the 33 million votes cast via phone calls and text messages from across the nation.

Siobhan showed little emotion at being voted off, saying she had done her best before launching her farewell performance of “Think.”

And just like that, we are down to the final 5 on American Idol with Crystal Bowersox being the only female left on the show.

Harry Connick Jr. will be appearing on the show next week to mentor the remaining finalists for a Sinatra themed week.

TELL US – DID AMERICA GET IT RIGHT? DID SIOBHAN DESERVE TO GO HOME?

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Tim Urban is the latest American Idol hopeful to leave the show despite showing two weeks of continued improvement.

The 20 year-old Texan found himself in the bottom three alongside Aaron Kelly and Casey James. His cover of the Goo Goo Dolls failed to impress viewers and he was sent packing. Ryan Seacrest affectionately called him the Comeback Kid and Teflon Tim, as Tim has had to endure a ton of criticism this season, and has even been compared to season six’s Sanjaya.

Tim’s elimination came on “Idol Gives Back” charity night which included performances by Joss Stone, Carrie Underwood, Alicia Keys and Mary J. Blige.

In other Idol news, Crystal Bowersox made headlines last week when it was reported she tried to quit the show, and was talked out of it by Ryan Seacrest. Crystal’s friend and former Idol hopeful, Katelyn Epperly, then revealed in a radio interview that Crystal sent her the following text message: ‘Oh, yes, I’m fine, Betrayed by Seacrest,” when asked how she was doing by Katelyn.

Crystal however seems to be changing her tune, telling PEOPLE magazine that all is well between she and Seacrest. There is “no beef with me and Ryan…We were never angry with each other. We had a conversation. He gave me good advice and I highly respect him,” said Crystal.

But then again do we really expect her to say ‘Ryan’s a scumbag, I confided some things in him, and he went behind my back and leaked it to the media.’ She would never say that of course, and is actually smart to make the PC comment about all being well.

Next week, the six remaining contestants will have former guest judge Shania Twain as their mentor. They will all be singing her songs.

AI Crystal BowersoxRyan Seacrest

TMZ is reporting that American Idol contestant and front runner Crystal Bowersox tried to quit the show just 2 weeks ago.

According to TMZ, Crystal actually quit the show two weeks ago and was walking off when AI host Ryan Seacrest convinced her to change her mind.

Crystal’s reason for wanting off the show? Apparently the 24 year-old singer-songwriter from Elliston, Ohio told Ryan she couldn’t handle the competition, and that she hated the attention, at one point even saying to Ryan, “What’s the point?”

In addition to that, the single mother of one was also feeling very homesick and wanted to return to Ohio to be with her family.

Ryan was however able to convince Crystal to stay by telling her that being on “Idol” was like starting a business, and reminding her that a million dollar recording contract was at stake. Ryan then added that she could use her money to do some amazing things. “You can buy your mom a house,” said Ryan to Crystal.

So Crystal remains in the competition, for now at least.

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TELL US – DO YOU FEEL SORRY FOR CRYSTAL OR SHOULD SHE TOUGHEN UP?

American Idol Big Mike

Viewers watching American Idol last night were shocked to see Michael Lynche aka Big Mike in the bottom three, but what was even more shocking was when Ryan Seacrest announced Mike as the receiver of the lowest number of votes this week.

The 26-year-old singer from New York found himself in the bottom three with Aaron Kelly and Andrew Garcia, even he had an okay performance with his version of “Eleanor Rigby” by the Beatles.

In his plea to the judges for their save (a one time opportunity the AI judges have to save one contestant this season), Michael performed “This Woman’s Work” by Maxwell.

With the audience cheering on, Simon Cowell announced the judges would be using their save on him. “This is unanimous, Michael, if that’s any comfort. We have decided we’re going to see you next week,” said Simon.

Due to the judges’ save being used this week, two contestants will be eliminated next week.  One can only hope the judges’ other favorite, Crystal Bowersox, doesn’t get voted off anytime soon.  Season 8 runner-up Adam Lambert will return next week to mentor the group.

TELL US – DID THE JUDGES MAKE THE RIGHT DECISION IN SAVING MIKE?

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