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Casey Abrams ignored Jimmy Iovine's suggestions on Wednesday and went with his gut instinct.
By
TODAY contributor
updated 4/14/2011 7:25:45 AM ET 2011-04-14T11:25:45
recap

Jimmy Iovine had some advice for the remaining eight “American Idol” finalists on Wednesday. At this point in the competition, the mentor said, “Every performer has to do a song that makes them think, ‘This could make me win.’ ”

However, the singers did not exactly treat the advice with the reverence that the Interscope executive was likely expecting. Instead, this was a week of self indulgence for most of the performers. When faced with the song selection for movie night, they tended to go for the tunes that made them the most comfortable or spoke to their sense of themselves as artists rather than making strategic choices.

Did it work? According to the judges, of course it did. Though Jennifer Lopez acknowledged that “everybody wants us to be tough,” she said that was too difficult because everyone was just too darned good. With one exception, this was another week where the grading scale was curved down enough to get anyone into Harvard.

Story: Vote: Rate the 'Idol' performances
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But two singers took particularly big risks by flat out ignoring the mentor’s suggestions, as well as the current radio airplay stats. Casey Abrams and James Durbin were so confident in their genres of choice that they’re betting big on voters choosing an “American Idol” who’s a proponent of genres rarely heard on Top 40 stations.

Abrams stuck to Nat King Cole’s “Nature Boy,” blatantly disregarding Iovine’s preference for Phil Collins’ “In the Air Tonight.” Abrams rationale, not unreasonably, was that he wanted something that made him comfortable as an artist, and it was an elite vocal that would fit well in any jazz club in the country. Did it play well with the “Idol” audience? We’ll find out during the results show.

Durbin, meanwhile, urged America to “give metal a chance.” He had the aid of the legendary metal performer Zakk Wylde onstage with him and all the bells and whistles the crew could offer for his cover of Sammy Hagar’s “Heavy Metal” from the movie of the same name. Is heavy metal really poised for a comeback? It’s hard to imagine, but Durbin gave it his best shot and his instincts have served him well so far.

Was teen 'too heavy' for Idol's front row?

Scotty McCreery also took what passes for a risk for him, switching from “Everybody’s Talkin’” to George Strait’s “I Cross My Heart.” In other words, moving from one country song to a different country song that Iovine didn’t like as much. McCreery’s no George Strait, but of course he impressed the judges, and it’s hard to see him in danger at this point.

Nearly everyone else is at risk this week, some for reasons beyond their control.

Based on the attrition of women so far this season, neither Lauren Alaina nor Haley Reinhart would be a shocking elimination. Iovine set the bar very high for Alaina, saying that she was a better singer than Miley Cyrus and should therefore kill “The Climb.” That made her actual performance, which was merely OK, seem disappointing. Iovine told her she could capture the departed Pia Toscano’s votes with a strong performance, but she likely didn’t do that.

Of course, J.Lo told her she didn’t need them anyway. “You don't need to steal any of Pia's votes. You've got plenty of your own,” she said. But based on what’s happened to women so far this season, Alaina needs all the extra ammunition she can get.

Story: Sorry, ladies. 'Idol's' just not that into you

Reinhart’s version of Blondie’s “Call Me” received the only negative feedback of the night. She’s very comfortable onstage and is obviously enjoying herself immensely, but it was a step back from what she’s done over the past couple of weeks. Still, J.Lo mostly held her tongue because “I'm so afraid to say anything about any of the girls because I don't want the girls to go home.” She did not offer a reason for giving nothing but positive feedback to the six guys.

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Jacob Lusk sang “Bridge Over Troubled Water” by Simon & Garfunkel and did fine. But Clay Aiken nailed that song in a defining performance way back in season two, which judging by the reaction on Twitter, isn’t something that Claymates have forgotten. Of course, many of the “Idol” voters were in grade school back then, but considering Lusk was in the bottom three last week, he can’t feel secure.

Starting off the show is never a great slot, and Paul McDonald’s “Old Time Rock ‘n’ Roll” by Bob Seger won’t make anyone forget Tom Cruise’s moves to it in “Risky Business.” “America, you just witnessed the first number in a Paul McDonald concert,” Randy Jackson gushed afterward. If so, that’s a concert that anyone but a die-hard McDonald fan would skip.

Is 'Idol's' Pia dating 'Dancing's' Mark Ballas?

Finally, Stefano Langone would never have picked Boyz II Men’s “End of the Road” if Simon Cowell were still on the panel because he would have known the British judge could not have resisted linking the song title and Langone’s probable fate. If he does go this week, it will sadly come after one of Langone’s better performances.

He did credibly well, but it’s a tough song and he’s always in the bottom. One of these weeks, his nine lives will run out. Perhaps that will come during Thursday’s results show, but at this point, not much would be truly surprising.

Craig Berman is a frequent contributor to TODAY.com. Follow him on Twitter @CraigBermanas he live tweets each episode.

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Photos: Top 13

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  1. 'American Idol' season 10

    The final two

    16-year-old Lauren Alaina, left, and Scotty McCreery, 17, will compete for the "American Idol" crown on Tuesday, May 24. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Getting the bad news

    A stunned Haley Reinhart, center, learns from Ryan Seacrest, right, that her "American Idol" run is over on Thursday, May 19. Lauren Alaina, left, advances to the final. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Si!

    Italian singing sensation Il Volo perform on "American Idol" on Thursday, May 19. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. One more time

    Haley Reinhart sings her farewell song, "Bennie and the Jets," after being eliminated on Thursday, May 19. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Unlikely duo

    Nicole Scherzinger performs her new single, “Right There,” with 50 Cent on the show Thursday, May 19. Scherzinger will be one of the hosts on Simon Cowell's new show, "X Factor." (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Hometown girl

    Lauren Alaina appears at an AT&T superstore in Chattanooga, Tenn., during the homecoming celebration for "American Idol" finalist on Saturday, May 14. (Chris Mckay / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Smile, smile, smile

    Lauren Alaina waves to her many friends, fans and supporters as she rides by in a red convertible during a parade in Rossville, Ga., on Saturday, May 14. (Jenna Walker / Chattanooga Times Free Press via AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. She holds the key

    Finalist Haley Reinhart was given the key to the city of Wheeling, Ill., during her homecoming celebration on Saturday, May 14. (Timothy Hiatt / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Center of attention

    "American Idol" finalist Haley Reinhart is welcomed by her hometown with a parade and ceremony during Haley Reinhart Day in Wheeling, Ill., on Saturday, May 14. (Paul Beaty / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. Get to work!

    "American Idol" finalist Scotty McCreery bags groceries at Lowes Food Store in Garner, N.C., on Saturday, May 14. (Steve Exum / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Any requests?

    Scotty McCreery performs at an outdoor concert for local fans at his homecoming celebration at Buffaloe Park in Garner, N.C., on Saturday, May 14. (Steve Exum / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. The final 3

    After the Thursday, May 12 elimination on "American Idol," Haley Reinhart, left, Scotty McCreery, center, and Lauren Alaina remain in the competition. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. The bad news

    Ryan Seacrest, right, tells James Durbin, left, that he has been eliminated, as Scotty McCreery learns that he is safe for another week. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. Last song

    Following his elimination on Thursday, May 12, James Durbin sang the Paul McCartney song, "Maybe I'm Amazed," which he sang during the second week of the live finals. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. Enrique Iglesias

    Enrique Iglesias performs his new single, "Dirty Dancer," from the "American Idol" stage on Thursday, May 12. The singer announced his new tour, in support of his album, "Euphoria." (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  16. Jordin Sparks

    Former winner Jordin Sparks performed her single, "No Air," on "American Idol" on Thursday, May 13. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  17. The final four contestants on season 10 of "American Idol," from left, Haley Reinhart, Scotty McCreery, James Durbin and Lauren Alaina. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  18. Out of Lusk

    Jacob Lusk hugs judge Jennifer Lopez onstage after being eliminated on "American Idol" on Thursday, April 5. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  19. Look who's 'On the Floor'

    Jennifer Lopez shows the hopefuls how it's done as she performs her single "On the Floor" on Thursday, April 5. Her new album "Love?" debuted this week. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  20. Time to go

    Jacob Lusk sings his farewell song after being eliminated. CTODAY.com's Craig Berman says, as Mentor Jimmy Iovine saw it, Lusk looked and sounded nervous, and "when you lose confidence, everybody knows it." (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  21. Lady night

    Country trio Lady Antebellum performs the new single "Just a Kiss" on "American Idol" on Thursday, April 5. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  22. High five

    The final five contestants on season 10 of "American Idol," clockwise from top left, James Durbin, Lauren Alaina, Jacob Lusk, Scotty McCreery and Hayley Reinhart. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  23. Leave 'em wanting more

    Casey Abrams, left, gets the word from Ryan Seacrest that he's been eliminated from "American Idol" on Thursday, April 28. The recipient of the only judges' save this season, Abrams went out in style with a rendition of "I Put a Spell on You" that ranks as the best exit number ever, says TODAY.com's Craig Berman. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  24. Knock their Sox off

    Season nine runner-up Crystal Bowersox performs her new single "Riding With Radio" on "American Idol" on Thursday, April 28. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  25. Let's get 'Lazy'

    Singer Bruno Mars performs "Lazy Song" on 'Idol" on Thursday, April 28. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  26. Six shooting for the top

    The final six contestants on season 10 of "American Idol," from left: Haley Reinhart, Scotty McCreery, James Durbin, Lauren Alaina, Casey Abrams and Jacob Lusk. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  27. Last of the wild cards

    Stefano Langone sings his final song after being eliminated on "American Idol" on Thursday, April 21. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  28. What planet ... ?

    Kanye West, right, joins Katy Perry for her single "E.T." on "Idol" on Thursday, April 21. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  29. Hello, it's 'Goodbye'

    Season seven winner David Cook performs his new song "The Last Goodbye." (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  30. Lucky 7

    The final seven contestants on season 10 of "American Idol," clockwise from left: Haley Reinhart, James Durbin, Stefano Langone, Jacob Lusk, Scotty McCreery, Lauren Alaina and Casey Abrams. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  31. First guy to go

    Paul McDonald, center, waves goodbye as he is eliminated on "American Idol," marking the first time this season that a man was voted off the program. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  32. 'California' dreamin'

    Sporting long red locks again, Rihanna performs her new single "California King Bed" on "Idol" Thursday night. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  33. The champ is back

    Season one "Idol' winner Kelly Clarkson performs the duet "Don’t You Wanna Stay" with Jason Aldean. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  34. Is this eight enough?

    The final eight contestants on season 10 of "American Idol," clockwise from left, Jacob Lusk, Haley Reinhart, Paul McDonald, Srefano Langone, Casey Abrams, Scotty McCreery, Lauren Alaina and James Durbin. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  35. One for the judges

    Pia Toscano sings after being eliminated on "American Idol" on Thursday, April 7.

    The judges didn't take the cut from fans well. “I’m shocked. I’m angry. I don’t even know what to say,” J.Lo ranted.

    "I’m gutted. You’re one of the best singers in this. I’m never upset on this show, but this makes me mad. Really mad,” Randy Jackson told the tearful Toscano.

    "A mistake is one thing, but lack of passion is unforgivable. They’re wrong. She’s beautiful when she sings -- she’s a bird,” Steven Tyler added. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  36. Something off his chest

    Iggy Pop struts his stuff in front of the judges' table while performing on "Idol" on Thursday, April 7. (Michael Becker / FOX) Back to slideshow navigation
  37. Nine alive

    The final nine contestants on season 10 of "American Idol," clockwise from bottom right: Haley Reinhart, James Durbin, Pia Toscano, Casey Abrams, Jacob Lusk, Stefano Langone, Paul McDonald, Lauren Alaina and Scotty McCreery. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  38. Two not for the show

    Naima Adedapo, left, and Thia Megia bid farewell after being eliminated on Thursday, March 31. The first four singers eliminated this season have been women, thanks to the judges’ use of the save on Casey Abrams last week. (Michael Becker  / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  39. Diva style

    Fantasia returned to "Idol" stage and "took it back old school" for a performance of "Collard Greens and Cornbread" on Thursday, March 31. (Michael Becker  / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  40. 2 of out 3 ain't bad

    Thia Megia, left, Haley Reinhart, center, and Pia Toscano perform on "Idol" on Thursday, March 31. (Michael Becker  / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  41. Oh, 'Rio'

    Jamie Foxx and will.i.am perform "Hot Wings," a song of the soundtrack to the movie "Rio." (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  42. Strike up the band

    "Idol" contestants, from left, James Durbin, Paul McDonald, Casey Abrams and Stefano Langone perform on Thursday, March 31. MacDonald was among the lowest three vote-getters this week. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  43. Final 10 plus one

    Usually only the top 10 Idol contestants go on to perform on "American Idol's" Live tour, but this year there will be 11. The singers are (clockwise from top left): James Durbin, Paul McDonald, Pia Toscano, Scotty McCreery, Jacob Lusk, Stefano Langone, Lauren Alaina, Casey Abrams, Naima Adedapo, Haley Reinhart and Thia Megia. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  44. A Hulk-ing announcement

    Pro-wrestler Hulk Hogan makes a surprise appearance on "American Idol" to reveal the fates of James Durbin and Paul McDonald, who were both safe and going on tour. Hogan also gave Ryan Seacreast a pro-wrestling punch to the head, hurling him into the audience. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  45. Jennifer Hudson returns

    Jennifer Hudson was back on the stage that made her famous to perform her new song, "Where You At?" "It feels good to be home!" she exclaimed. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  46. Nail-biting time

    Ryan Seacrest reveals to Casey Abrams, left, and Stefano Langone who must "sing for their life." (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  47. Saved by the judges

    Casey Abrams, who was voted off "American Idol" Thursday, reacts after being saved by judges Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez and Randy Jackson. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  48. Sugarland

    "Sugarland" took to the stage to sing “Stuck Like Glue.” (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  49. Happy birthday, Steven

    Stevie Wonder sings to help celebrate Steven Tyler's 63rd birthday. “I’m speechless,” Tyler says. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  50. Eleven sent

    The final 11 contestants on "American Idol," clockwise from top left: Pia Toscano, Stefano Langone, Lauren Alaina, Paul McDonald, James Durbin, Scotty McCreery, Naima Adedapo, Jacob Lusk, Casey Abrams, Haley Reinhart and Thia Megia. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  51. No save tonight

    Karen Rodriguez gets the word, alongside host Ryan Seacrest, that she has been eliminated from season 10 of "American Idol" on Thursday, March 17. She did well enough in her last-chance performance to have judge Jennifer Lopez lobby the other judges for her, but not enough to earn the save. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  52. Have a seat

    Fergie and will.i.am of The Black Eyed Peas perform on "American Idol." (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  53. DeWyze man said ...

    Season nine winner Lee DeWyze performs on "Idol" on Thursday, March 17. Seacrest introduced him by noting that he’d gone from “salesman to superstar overnight.” (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  54. Dozen done good

    The final 12 contestants on season 10 of "American Idol." Top row, from left: Pia Toscano (holding a Casey Abrams mask), James Durbin, Paul McDonald, Jacob Lusk and Scotty McCreery. Bottom from left: Haley Reinhart, Karen Rodriguez, Stefano Langone, Naima Adedapo, Thia Megia and Laurn Alaina. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  55. Glow in the 'Aftermath'

    Former "American Idol" runner-up Adam Lambert performs "Aftermath" on the show on Thursday, March 10. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  56. A little Diddy

    Diddy-Dirty Money featuring Skylar Grey took the stage to perform "Coming Home" on Thursday night. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  57. First to go

    Ashton Jones, with Seacrest, is elimintaed on "Idol" on Thursday, March 10. Joining her in the bottom three were Karen Rodriguez and Haley Reinhart. (Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  58. The finalists

    "American Idol's" Top 13 are (bottom row from left) Paul McDonald, Ashthon Jones, Pia Toscano, Casey Abrams, Haley Reinhart and Scott McCreery. (Top row from left) James Durbin, Naima Adedapo, Jacob Lusk, Thia Megia, Karen Rodriguez, Stefano Langone and Lauren Alaina. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  59. Casey Abrams

    Casey, a 20-year-old from Idyllwild, Calif., has fought every step of the way to continue in the competition. He was nearly eliminated during semifinals week when he had to be hospitalized for a stomach ailment two days before taping. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  60. Thia Megia

    Thia, a 16-year-old from Mountain House, Calif., is one of the competition’s youngest hopefuls. During the semifinals, judge Steven Tyler said that her “pitch can be so perfect that it doesn’t matter what song” she sings. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  61. James Durbin

    James, a 22-year-old from Santa Cruz, Calif., is the only rocker in this season’s competition. His penchant for screams and his big stage personality have drawn comparisons to season eight runner-up Adam Lambert. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  62. Pia Toscano

    Pia, a 22-year-old from Howard Beach, N.Y., got a standing ovation during the semifinals for her performance of “I’ll Stand By You.” (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  63. Lauren Alaina

    Lauren, a 16-year-old from Rossville, Ga., brought the crowd to its feet with Reba McEntire’s “Turn on the Radio” during the semifinal round. She first ingrained herself in America’s memory by singing Aerosmith -- with Steven Tyler -- for her initial audition. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  64. Jacob Lusk

    Jacob, a 23-year-old from Compton, Calif., has a smooth, soothing voice that judge Jennifer Lopez compared to crooner Luther Vandross’s. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  65. Haley Reinhart

    Haley, a 20-year-old from Wheeling, Ill., sang “Fallin’” well, but J.Lo thought she was too stuck in her head. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  66. Paul McDonald

    Paul, a 26-year-old from Nashville, won high praise from the judges for his version of Rod Stewart’s “Maggie May.” Judge Steven Tyler loved his style (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  67. Karen Rodriguez

    Karen, a 21-year-old from New York, gave judge Jennifer Lopez goose bumps with her Spanish version of Mariah Carey’s “Hero.” It was a move that won America’s votes during the semifinals. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  68. Scott McCreery

    Scott, a 17-year-old country crooner from Garner, N.C., was the first of the guys to become a finalist. He performed “Letters From Home” during the semifinals to clinch his spot. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  69. Ashthon Jones

    Ashthon, a 24-year-old from Nashville, was one of the judges’ wild-card picks. She performed “I Am Telling You” to win them over one more time. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  70. Stefano Langon

    Stefano, a 21-year-old from Kent, Wash., was the only male singer the judges picked for a wild-card spot. He performed “I Need You Now” for his last-chance performance, and Steven Tyler declared that the young singer “gilded the lily of your own passion.” (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
  71. Naima Adedapo

    Naima, a 26-year-old Milwaukee native, was the last of the judges’ wild-card picks. Steven Tyler said she was the new Ella Fitzgerald after she performed “Summertime” during the semifinals. (Michael Becker / Fox) Back to slideshow navigation
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  1. Image: Lauren Alaina, Scotty McCreery
    Michael Becker / FOX
    Above: Slideshow (71) 'American Idol' Season 10 - Top 13
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Video: Toscano on ‘Idol’ elimination: ‘This was God’s plan’

  1. Closed captioning of: Toscano on ‘Idol’ elimination: ‘This was God’s plan’

    >>> " american idol " are up in arms after last week's surprising elimination of front-runner pia toscano. despite receiving praise from the judges week after week, she was voted off. now fans have even started a campaign to have her reinstated. she joins us on the sofa. good morning.

    >> good morning.

    >> we know the judges were shocked and america, hollywood was shocked, we were shocked. how shocked were you?

    >> you know, i had a feeling the night before. it was just a feeling in my stomach. i said, i think i'm going to be in the bottom three tomorrow. they said, why would you say that? i said, i have that feeling. so it didn't come as a shock to me when i was in the bottom three, but you never expect to get voted off so early.

    >> when you heard your name?

    >> it was hard. it was a tough night.

    >> after your elimination, steven tyler spoke out and -- trying to figure out why you didn't get the votes he said guys aren't voting and girls are jealous. do you agree with him?

    >> you know, you don't know. there are a lot of female fans voting for the boys, but you don't know. you have to go out every week, give 110% and be happy with your performance. that's all you can do.

    >> when did you realize getting voted off wasn't going to be the end of the road for you?

    >> that night, everything was hitting me. all i kept thinking of was my journey was over on the show. i never imagined i would get the support i have been getting from people i have looked up to my whole life.

    >> we're hearing about a record deal. can you confirm that?

    >> i have been so busy we haven't talked about anything yet. we're focused on the tour now and whatever opportunities come my way, i'll take.

    >> will.i.am said, i have been told "no" a lot and i have learned over time that doesn't mean it's the end. what has this taught you?

    >> i tried to spin it in a positive way that this was god's plan. maybe it's a blessing in disguise . it's opened so many doors for me. i have no regrets whatsoever.

    >> they are talking about changing the rules in the future so america votes on the bottom three but the judges decide who's going to leave the show. do you think that would be better? that probably would have saved you for sure?

    >> it may have. i can't say. the voting is -- you know, it's hard to say really. i think the judges should have a say. i think they should.

    >> we were talking during the break about what it takes to sing your good-bye song after knowing you have been eliminated. i imagine you feel you can handle anything, any venue, any crowd, any situation.

    >> i would have to say that was the toughest moment for me. that was the hardest thing i have done. i was trying to breathe the whole time, get through the song and i really couldn't. i was too emotional.

    >> you said your family is there as well. did you feel you had let them down?

    >> not that i let them down, but the last time they were out was my top 12 female performance, the girls performance. they kept giving the tickets to my family because i have a huge family. so i said, guys, please come out. that was the night they came out and saw me eliminated.

    >> it must be a compliment when tom hanks tweets about you.

    >> and others.

    >> jessica alba . i'm done for the season because it was an outrage.

    >> that's funny.

    >> jennifer hudson as well.

    >> i appreciate the support so much.

    >> what has the experience meant to you?

    >> it's opened so many doors. everybody from the staff to the contestants were amazing. it's a dream come true.

    >> have you had a chance to spend a night at home? have a home-cooked meal?

    >> i haven't yet. but after the tour probably.

    >> so you head back to l.a. to support the performers that are still in the running at this point.

    >> today i go back.

    >> two women left? do you think they could become the " american idol "?

    >> they are so strong and the boys are, too. i'm rooting for them all.

    >> do you have a pick?

    >> i love them all. they're all amazing.

    >> but you don't have a pick?

    >> i don't have a pick.

    >> we love you. you're just fantastic.

    >> thank you, guys.

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