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ChrisD4AI5
post Mar 10th 2006, 1:34 AM
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ChrisD4AI5
post Mar 10th 2006, 1:41 AM
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Cowell rips former Fluco, 'Idol' hopeful

Two out of three ain’t bad.

For the first time in three weeks, Chris Daughtry received less than rave reviews across the board after his performance on “American Idol.”

The Fluvanna County High School graduate stuck with his trademark styling with his take on Seether’s 2002 ballad “Broken,” from the “Disclaimer” album. For the prior two weeks, Daughtry had heard nothing but praise from the three “Idol” judges.

This week, Simon Cowell broke the trend.

But before Cowell could crash the party, judges Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul had their say.

Jackson expressed confidence in the 26-year-old’s decision to continue to make his name with rock songs. “Another good song, another good performance,” he said.

Jackson said he loves it when people know where they are and what they can do.

“You ready. You ready. You’re doing your thing. Rock on,” Jackson said.

As usual, Abdul poured on the sugar during her review. She told Daughtry that in the future, he is going to be selling out stadiums. “I can already hear you on the radio,” Abdul said.

“You get better and better,” she said.

She agreed with Jackson’s take on Daughtry’s choice to continue down the rock ’n’ roll path. Two weeks ago, Daughtry “wowed” judges with his version of Bon Jovi’s “Wanted Dead or Alive,” and last week, he got rave reviews after belting “Hemorrhage (In My Hands)” by Fuel.

And then there was Cowell.

He started off by proclaiming that Daughtry sang a boring song and that his performance was “a bit indulgent.”

“I wasn’t so impressed,” he said.

He encouraged Daughtry to be broader in his choices and to remember to be entertaining. He also advised the husband and stepfather of two not to take “Idol” too seriously; in other words, lighten up when performing.

“I would be careful. You’ve still got a long way to go,” Cowell said.

Jackson interrupted Cowell’s critique to add that while he agreed the song may have been boring, Daughtry is still great.

After the judges had their say, show host Ryan Seacrest asked Daughtry why he chose the song. He said he wanted to sing a softer song and show another side of himself.

“It’s about time that America gets to see what I do,” Daughtry said.

Source


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tifferoo
post Mar 10th 2006, 2:57 AM
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WRAL 2/15/06 Four N.C. Natives Make Final 24 On 'American Idol'

Four N.C. Natives Make Final 24 On 'American Idol'
What would “American Idol” be without North Carolina? This year's competition has four from the Tar Heel state in the final 24 singers.

The local finalists are Heather Cox of Jonesville, Kellie Pickler of Albermarle, Bucky Covington of Rockingham, and Chris Daughtry of McLeansville, who was born in Roanoke Rapids.

The competition and voting begins next week. The women sing on Tuesday; the men on Wednesday.


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tifferoo
post Mar 10th 2006, 3:09 AM
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Celebrity Spider 2/16/06 Top 24 American Idol Semifinalists Revealed

Top 24 American Idol Semifinalists Revealed 2/16/06

TOP 24 “AMERICAN IDOL” SEMIFINALISTS REVEALED AS TV’S HOTTEST SHOW HEATS UP! AMERICA BEGINS VOTING FOR FAVORITE CONTESTANTS; GIRLS COMPETE FOR FIRST TIME TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 21; AND BOYS COMPETE WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 22 First LIVE Results Show Airs Thursday, February 23, on FOX

The remarkable fifth season of AMERICAN IDOL hit a high note last night as the grueling Hollywood auditions ended and the judges’ Top 24 semifinalists were revealed. Next week, the 24 contestants will be split into two groups – 12 males and 12 females – with each performing a song of his or her choice for America. The fate of these 24 contestants – one of whom will be the next American Idol – now rests in the viewers’ hands. See what happens when the competition heats up, nerves rattle and contestants shine or fizzle out on the season’s first performance shows Tuesday, Feb. 21 (8:00–10:00 PM ET/PT) and Wednesday, Feb. 22 (8:00–10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. Then tune in to see who America chooses to continue in the competition. Two males and two females will be eliminated on the results show Thursday, Feb. 23 (8:00–9:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed).

The Top 12 female singers from around the nation will perform Tuesday, Feb. 21 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. At the end of the show, the phone lines will open for two hours and AMERICAN IDOL viewers will vote for their favorite female contestant(s). Fans can use the branded toll-free telephone numbers (1-866-IDOLS-01, -02, etc.) until 12:00 AM ET/PT (11:00 PM CT/MT), subject to time zone restrictions, or vote via text messaging from their Cingular Wireless phones. Cingular Wireless customers can send the word “vote” to the four-digit short number (5701, 5702, etc.) representing the contestant of their choice.

The Top 12 male singers from around the nation will perform Wednesday, Feb. 22 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. At the end of the show, the phone lines will again open for two hours and AMERICAN IDOL viewers will vote for their favorite male contestant(s) from Wednesday’s episode. As on Tuesday, fans can use the branded toll-free telephone numbers (1-866-IDOLS-01, -02, etc.) until 12:00 AM ET/PT (11:00 PM CT/MT), subject to time zone restrictions, or vote via text messaging from their Cingular Wireless phones. Cingular Wireless customers can send the word “vote” to the four-digit short number (5701, 5702, etc.) representing the contestant of their choice.

On Thursday’s LIVE results show, the semifinalists will take the stage to find out their fate. The two lowest vote-getters from each group will be eliminated from the competition live on Thursday, Feb. 23 (8:00-9:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed) on FOX.

Meet Your 24 Semifinalists:

Female singers scheduled to perform Tuesday, Feb. 21 (8:00–10:00 PM ET/PT) include:

PARIS BENNETT – (17) From Fayetteville, GA – (Auditioned in Greensboro) – Paris began singing at the age of 4. She has performed in numerous concerts and has opened for many groups, including Bow Wow. Paris is a skilled dancer in hip-hop, jazz and modern African dance.

AYLA BROWN – (17) From Wrentham, MA (Auditioned in Boston) – Ayla is currently a senior at Noble & Greenough High School. She is captain of her basketball team and has scored over 2,200 points. Ayla will be attending Boston College in the fall on a full basketball scholarship. She got her start in the world of music while singing along to Disney movies at the age of 6.

HEATHER COX – (22) From Jonesville, NC (Auditioned in Denver) – Heather currently lives in her hometown of Jonesville, NC, and recently graduated from Surry Community College with an accounting degree.

BRENNA GETHERS – (25) From Mt. Vernon, NY (Auditioned in Boston) – Born in the Bronx and raised in Mt. Vernon, NY, Brenna began singing at the tender age of 3. Brenna holds a black belt in Shotokan karate and is an avid Scrabble competitor.

MANDISA – (29) From Antioch, TN (Auditioned in Chicago) – Born and raised in Citrus Heights, CA, Mandisa moved to Nashville to study singing at Fisk University. She has performed with such artists as Shania Twain, Trisha Yearwood, Faith Hill and Charlie Daniels.

KINNIK SKY– (28) From Duluth, GA (Auditioned in Greensboro) – Born and raised in Columbia, SC, Kinnik began singing at the age of 4, and considers her singing style “old school soul.” For the past eight years, she has been living in Duluth, GA, where she works as a professional actress at various theaters.

MELISSA McGHEE – (21) From Tampa, FL (Auditioned in Denver) – Melissa was born and raised in Tampa. At the young age of 4 Melissa embarked on her performing career. A true romantic, Melissa enjoys singing, dancing and going to the beach in her free time.

KATHARINE McPHEE – (21) From Sherman Oaks, CA (Auditioned in San Francisco) – Katharine was born and raised in Los Angeles. She was exposed at an early age to the joy of singing by her mother, a vocal coach. After high school, Katharine attended the prestigious Boston Conservatory for one semester and majored in musical theater.

BECKY O’DONOHUE – (25) From Dobbs Ferry, NY (Auditioned in Boston) – Becky began singing at the age of 4. Becky attended Niagara University on a full scholarship and received her B.A. in Communications. Singing isn’t her only talent. Becky played Division I basketball for Niagara University. Currently, she is working for an entertainment company and as a waitress in City Island.

KELLIE PICKLER – (19) From Albemarle, NC (Auditioned in Greensboro) – Kellie is a waitress who currently lives in Albemarle, NC, and enjoys singing, dancing and shopping for shoes. Kellie has been singing for as long as she can remember, but only began performing for crowds four years ago.

STEVIE SCOTT – (19) From Fair Oaks, CA (Auditioned in Denver) – Stevie is currently a freshman at California State University, Sacramento, studying music. She is from a musical family, began performing at 10, and by the age of 15, began a recording career. A versatile musician who plays the guitar and piano, Stevie enjoys performing everything from R&B to opera.

LISA TUCKER – (16) From Anaheim, CA (Auditioned in Denver) – Lisa is currently a senior at Kennedy High School. She was the original “Young Nala” in Disney’s Los Angeles production of “The Lion King” and was voted by Variety as one of the “Top Ten Talents to Watch.” Lisa also plays the guitar and piano and is a songwriter.

Male singers scheduled to perform Wednesday, Feb. 22 (8:00–10:00 PM ET/PT) include:

BOBBY BENNETT – (19) From Denver, CO (Auditioned in Denver) – Bobby has been singing from the age of 7. He dreams of becoming a performer so he can make people forget about their troubles for a little while. Before making the Final 24, Bobby worked at Target.

KEVIN COVAIS – (16) From Levittown, NY (Auditioned in Boston) – Kevin is a junior at Island Trees High School in Levittown, NY. He has been performing since he was 10 years old and has appeared in productions such as “Guys and Dolls” and “Godspell.” Kevin also is a member of the Chorale in the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra and the Nassau/Suffolk Jazz ensemble.

BUCKY COVINGTON – (28) From Rockingham, NC (Auditioned in Greensboro) – Bucky lives in his hometown of Rockingham, NC. At the age of 19, he picked up a guitar for the first time and soon after joined his first band. About two years ago, Bucky switched to a country/beach/rock band and realized that his talent crosses many types of music.

CHRIS DAUGHTRY – (26) From McLeansville, NC (Auditioned in Denver) – Chris discovered his singing ability in algebra class. A gifted guitar player and songwriter, Chris has already recorded a CD with his band Absent Element. For the past three years, Chris has been a service advisor for a car dealership in Greensboro, NC. In 2000, Chris married his wife Deanna and became a stepfather of two.

PATRICK HALL – (27) From Gravette, AR (Auditioned in Las Vegas) – Patrick was born in a small town in Arkansas and began singing in church at age 4. Since then he has been pursuing his singing career while also working as a real estate manager. In 2005, Patrick married his longtime friend Laura, and they currently live with their two cats and a puppy.

TAYLOR HICKS – (29) From Birmingham, AL (Auditioned in Las Vegas) – Taylor is a blue-eyed soul singer who has played every honky-tonk imaginable. A talented writer and harmonica player, Taylor enters the competition with almost 29 years of singing experience, as he has been singing since he could crawl.

WILL MAKAR – (16) From The Woodlands, TX (Auditioned in Austin) – Will was born and raised in The Woodlands, TX. Will is currently a sophomore at The Woodlands College Park High School. He discovered his talent after his two sisters made him sing “Bare Necessities” for their friends. In 1999 and 2002, Will sang with the Houston Children’s Chorus for President Clinton and President Bush, respectively. People would be surprised to know that Will can impersonate Chewbacca from “Star Wars.”

GEDEON McKINNEY – (17) From Memphis, TN (Auditioned in Chicago) – Gedeon hails from a family of seven children (four boys and three girls). Too young to join the choir, Gedeon sang on the steps of a church for his first standing ovation. He is a senior at The Yo! Memphis Academy of Visual and Performing Arts.

JOSE “SWAY” PENALA – (28) From South San Francisco (Auditioned in San Francisco) – Sway enters the competition making his own music. Before joining IDOL, he was a member of the 6th Day singing group. Jose spends his days working in real estate and his nights entertaining crowds through song.

DAVID RADFORD – (17) From Crystal Lake, IL (Auditioned in Chicago) – David is currently a senior at Crystal Lake Central High School. He has been singing “his way” since he can remember. As a child, whenever there was a spotlight, David somehow found a way to its center. In addition to singing, David plays the trumpet as well as a mean game of Ping-Pong.

ELLIOTT YAMIN – (27) From Richmond, VA (Auditioned in Boston) – Elliott began singing at the ripe age of 5. His mother, who was a professional singer, is his inspiration and biggest fan. For Elliott, being on AMERICAN IDOL has allowed him to pursue his dream of singing professionally.

ACE YOUNG – (25) From Los Angeles, CA (Auditioned in Denver) – Ace is the youngest of five brothers. Ace grew up in Boulder, CO, and began his singing career at age 9. He started performing at 11 in local malls and recreation centers. Ace lives in Los Angeles and works in sales and home remodeling.

Fourteen-time Emmy-nominated AMERICAN IDOL is created and executive-produced by Simon Fuller, founder of 19 Entertainment, Ltd.; and executive-produced by Cecile Frot-Coutaz, CEO, FremantleMedia North America, Inc.; Nigel Lythgoe, President, 19 Television; and Ken Warwick, Executive Producer, FremantleMedia North America, Inc.

Go to AmericanIdol.com for all of your AMERICAN IDOL news. Check out the photos from the different audition cities, along with special, behind-the-scenes information on AMERICAN IDOL.

-FOX-

News & Observer 2/16/06 Two Tar Heels make 'American Idol' cut

Two Tar Heels make 'American Idol' cut

******

CORRECTION

An "American Idol" story on this page Thursday failed to mention two of the four North Carolina contestants among the 24 semifinalists. In addition to Chris Daughtry of McLeansville and Kellie Pickler of Albemarle, Bucky Covington of Rockingham and Heather Cox of Jonesville made the cut.

******

Fox's television audience learned Wednesday night that two North Carolinians have a serious shot at becoming the next "American Idol." The episode, shown locally at 8 p.m. on WRAZ Fox 50, was the last taped installment of a whittling process to determine which 24 contestants move on to live episodes.

They begin airing next week. Then it will be time for viewers to decide who stays on the show.

Chris Daughtry, 25, of McLeansville, got the thumbs-up from judges Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul. He is the lead singer of Absent Element, a North Carolina hard rock band.

Later, with a wink, Abdul gave Kellie Pickler of Albemarle her good news. "We'll be seeing you," Abdul told the blond roller-skating waitress, 19, who looked shocked. Pickler's poignant back story includes early abandonment by her mother and prison for her father.

Even the grouchy Cowell likes her. "That's a nice girl," he said at the Greensboro auditions in October. On Wednesday night he seemed to be containing a smile as the tearful Pickler asked the judges if her waterproof mascara was working.


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tifferoo
post Mar 10th 2006, 3:20 AM
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News Record 2/17/06 Guilford singer still an 'Idol' contender

Friday, February 17, 2006
Guilford singer still an 'Idol' contender

GREENSBORO -- Tune in Triad -- another homegrown "American Idol" may be in the making.

This week, the field of contestants on the Fox series was narrowed to just 24, including four North Carolinians. Among them are William "Bucky" Covington, 28, of Rockingham, and Chris Daughtry, 26, of McLeansville.

The pair each earned a ticket to the Hollywood auditions after outsinging thousands of people from across the nation who auditioned for the show.

Covington impressed judges in Greensboro, a last-minute addition to the tour after Hurricane Katrina evacuations canceled auditions in Memphis, Tenn. Daughtry auditioned in Denver.

The announcement of the final 24 contestants came Wednesday night, after two weeks of shows chronicling the drama that unfolded during the weeklong Hollywood audition. There, just under 200 people battled for a spot in the finals.

Both Daughtry and Covington said despite the tears -- and often shouting -- that viewers saw from other contestants, they had nothing but fun.

"I love it. I loved every minute of it," Daughtry said in a phone interview Thursday between rehearsals in Hollywood.

The husband and father of two said he was too nervous in the Denver auditions to really "show himself." In Hollywood, the rocker says, he put it all out there.

"I had so much fun with it," he said. "There was so much drama going on around us, but I couldn't relate to it."

Covington said it's been fun, if a little nerve-racking.

"Every night, I've slept like a baby -- a baby waking up every hour crying," he said with a laugh. "It's really a lot like back home, there's just a lot more concrete out here."

Concrete, press junkets, photo ops -- the pair said life in the limelight has been pretty cool so far, though Covington said he's already learned he'll never eat like a star.

"It's hard to read menus out here. I'm used to McDonald's and KFC, and everybody's trying to turn me on to calamari," he said. "I found out that was squid, and I'm not eating that."

The country crooner, who can usually be seen on screen sporting his cowboy hat, said his audition in Greensboro went smoothly. But in Hollywood, he said, "my nerves jumped on me a little.

"I've been working on my stage presence," he said. "I'm trying to stay a little more focused and not look at the big picture. Just take it one day at a time."

Next week, the field of contestants face the next elimination round. On Tuesday, the top 12 women will perform, including North Carolina residents Heather Cox, 22, of Jonesville, and Kellie Pickler, 19, of Albemarle. On Wednesday, the top 12 men will sing, including Covington and Daughtry. Viewers will be able to vote for their favorite performances each night.

On Thursday, votes will be tallied and the two lowest vote-getters in each group will be eliminated.

In 2004, Fantasia Barrino took home the title of "American Idol," and this year, she was nominated for four Grammy Awards.

Daughtry says he has his eye on the prize.

"It's an amazing opportunity," he said. "It's basically instant success. Who wouldn't want that?"


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tifferoo
post Mar 10th 2006, 3:26 AM
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Richmond Times Dispatch 2/17/06 Two on 'Idol' have ties to Virginia

Two on 'Idol' have ties to Virginia

BY DOUGLAS DURDEN
TIMES-DISPATCH STAFF WRITER Feb 17, 2006


Elliott Yamin remembers exactly what the principal told him when he was asked to leave Douglas Freeman High School as a sophomore:

You're taking up valuable learning space.

Yamin is now part of TV's most valuable space.

Yamin, 27, is one of two Virginians to make it to the semifinals of the latest "American Idol," America's favorite singing competition and highest-rated TV show.

Also among the 24 semifinalists is Chris Daughtry, a 1998 graduate of Fluvanna County High School in Palmyra.

Daughtry, 26, now lives in McLeansville, N.C., and works as a service adviser for a car dealership in nearby Greensboro.

Jason Davis, a math teacher at Fluvanna High, remembers Daughtry as a talented artist and musician -- and a young man with a lot of hair compared with his shaven look today.

"He had a full head of hair in high school," Davis said. "All the girls swooned over his long black hair."

Daughtry has already recorded a CD with his band, Absent Element.

Yamin, who earned his GED several years after leaving Freeman, said his musical ambitions have been less focused.

"I've always wanted to pursue a music career, but I didn't dedicate the time and effort," Yamin said yesterday in a telephone interview from California.

His biggest accomplishment to date was winning $1,000 in a local karaoke contest. He also sang the national anthem at a recent Richmond RiverDogs game.

Now, he's competing for a recording contract that will follow weeks of exposure on TV's most popular series.

"No matter what happens from this point, all the concerns I've had about a music career and my voice and where I fit in -- I think it's been totally validated. This has given me the confidence to pursue not just music, but anything in my life," said Yamin, whose most recent job has been as a clerk at Westbury Pharmacy.

Since making it past the Boston auditions for "American Idol" in August, Yamin has been back and forth to Los Angeles several times. Because the early rounds of the show are taped in advance, he's known he made it into the semifinals for several weeks.

Did he have trouble keeping it a secret?

"It's very hard, considering I have a huge mouth. You're so proud and you're so elated, you want to shout it to the world," said Yamin, who's already discovered that being an "American Idol" contestant means following a lot of rules.

Yamin describes his sound as raw R&B and soul. He says his musical influences are Stevie Wonder and Donny Hathaway.

Although he's confident in his abilities, Yamin said he was initially worried at the Boston auditions because of the sheer number of Idol wannabes. "I wasn't sure I was going to be heard."

He was heard. And now he's in the final 24, living in a hotel with other "American Idol" contestants (Patrick Hall from Gravette, Ark., is his roommate) and spending the day talking to the media.

"We've had a lot more downtime than I initially anticipated," said Yamin, asked about life as an "American Idol" contestant.

"We're definitely practicing and rehearsing. I'm sure our days will get longer and harder as the show progresses."

Yamin and Daughtry, along with the 10 other male semifinalists, will perform on Tuesday's two-hour show beginning at 8 p.m. on WRLH-Channel 35. The top 12 female singers will perform from 8 to 10 p.m. Wednesday. A live results show, which will eliminate two male singers and two female singers, will air at 8 p.m. Thursday.

"I've exceeded all my own goals and expectations," said Yamin, who remembers back to the unmet challenge of high school.

"I finally completed something. It's a wonderful sense of accomplishment I've seldom experienced. This is the biggest thing I've done in my life."


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post Mar 10th 2006, 3:32 AM
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Daily Progress 2/18/06 Fluvanna alumnus makes it on 'Idol'

Fluvanna alumnus makes it on 'Idol'

A former Fluvanna County boy has made it past cruel "American Idol" judge Simon Cowell - so far.
Chris Daughtry, who graduated from Fluvanna County High School in 1998, has successfully landed into the show's final 24.

Daughtry, 26, lives in McLeansville, N.C., with his wife and her two children from a previous marriage. He showed little interest in music until high school, said his mother, Sandra Daughtry.

He was more interested in drawing and artwork "up until maybe about a couple of years before he graduated," she said.

Ultimately, however, he and a few buddies formed a band in high school. The act split up after he got married and moved to North Carolina, where his family had lived previously, in 2000.

He then joined the alternative rock band Absent Element and wrote music and lyrics. But after the "American Idol" auditions, he had to quit the band. "Legally, you can't be involved in anything else," Sandra Daughtry said.

Her son performed Joe Cocker's "The Letter" at his audition and later on the show sang "The First Cut is the Deepest," originally recorded by Cat Stevens.

On Fox's "American Idol" Web site, Daughtry says if he wins, he would first thank God. Also on the site, he notes one of his proudest moments: "Teaching my son to ride a bike." And he mentions his most embarrassing experience: "Taking photos with my first band, and my leather pants ripped and my butt was showing. It was great."

Being away from his wife and son has been hard, Daughtry's mom said. "His wife was with him when he went to Denver [for the auditions]. They were fortunate where she could be with him there. But I think that was the hardest thing, was having to leave his family behind."

She couldn't talk about where her son is now. "Legally, we can't say anything that hasn't already been seen on TV," she said.

Daughtry will next perform on "American Idol" Wednesday with the other 11 men semifinalists. Two will be eliminated Thursday, along with two female semifinalists.


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post Mar 10th 2006, 3:48 AM
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Charlottesville Newsplex 2/22/06 Local Makes Final 24 on American Idol

Local Makes Final 24 on American Idol

February 22, 2006

Wednesday night, one of our area's very own sang for your votes as he battles to become the next American Idol. Chris Daughtry is one of the contestants you probably saw if you saw the show. He is originally from Fluvanna County, and all that know him are now extremely proud.

James and Sandra Daughtry live a pretty normal life in Fluvanna County. They have two adult sons and spend quiet nights at home alone. That was until their son was seen on millions of televisions screens as a contestant on American Idol.

"We've heard from some people that we haven't heard from in a long time, [who are] pit of state that had seen it," said Sandra, mother of American Idol Contestant, Chris Daughtry.

Their son is 27-year-old Idol contestant, Chris Daughtry. Wednesday night he sang for millions in hopes of becoming the next American Idol.

"He's up against twelve more guys, but we know he's going to do a good job," said James, Chris' father.

"It is very emotional. The first show I cried," laughed Sandra

Chris' parents weren't the only ones to notice when he was younger. While a student at Fluvanna High School, David Small directed Chris in the musical 'The Wiz'.

"He was a powerhouse then, full of energy," said Smalls.

Chris has been described as a person full of energy and talent and made classes exciting. That's just of the many reason why Small feels Chris always had that 'IT' factor to make it big.

"You know you could see signs of that when he graduated. I remember when he gave me his guitar pick that he autographed and said, 'Mr. Smalls keep this for when I'm big, you'll have my autograph,'" said Smalls as he mimicked Chris.

As David performed tonight, his mother predicted what anyone could expert her to do: "a lot of yelling."

WTKR 2/23/06 Virginia Contestants Earns Rave Reviews On ' American Idol'

Virginia Contestants Earns Rave Reviews On ' American Idol'

Richmond's own Elliott Yamin earned rave reviews from the judges on the hit TV show "American Idol" last night.

Notoriously hard-to-please judge Simon Cowell told Yamin he might be the best male vocalist the show has ever had in its five seasons.

Yamin sang Stevie Wonder's "If You Really Love Me." Yamin is among 12 male semifinalists on the show. He was born in Los Angeles but moved to Richmond when he was 9. He attended Douglas Freeman High School.

Another semifinalist, Chris Daughtry, is a 1998 graduate of Fluvanna County High School in Palmyra. Daughtry also earned high marks from the judges for his rendition of Bon Jovi's "Wanted Dead or Alive."

Both men will find out tonight if viewers voted to keep them in the competition. Four of the 24 semifinalists will be eliminated.


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Charlottesville Daily Progress 2/23/06 Daughtry wows 'American Idol' judges

Daughtry wows 'American Idol' judges

Although Chris Daughtry, 26, spent most of his childhood in North Carolina, he moved with his parents to Troy in 1994 and attended Fluvanna County High School.
There, he formed a band with a few friends, which lasted until he married and moved to McLeansville, N.C., in 2000.

He joined the alternative rock band Absent Element and tried his hand at writing music and lyrics. He wound up dropping out, however, so he could perform on "American Idol."

And Wednesday night, Daughtry "wowed" judge Paula Abdul with his version of Bon Jovi's "Wanted Dead or Alive."

Abdul gave him a standing ovation, Randy Jackson said, "You've got it," and curmudgeon Simon Cowell responded with praise. Cowell complemented Daughtry, saying he has potential and a great recording voice, but added that he needs more charisma.

Daughtry's critique turned out to be one of the best among the 12 performers, which must have pleased his parents, who still live in Fluvanna.

An hour before Wednesday night's show began, Daughtry's parents eagerly awaited his TV appearance, which they planned to watch from the Kents Store home they moved into last year.

They knew nothing of what their son would perform or even when, because Daughtry is prohibited from discussing much about the show.

"We watched last night's show with the girls, of course, but the real excitement is watching tonight," Sandra Daughtry said.

They were prepared for any criticism "American Idol" judges might throw at their son.

"I personally just think it's part of the show," the singer's father, Pete Daughtry, said. "He's mature enough to take the criticism. If it comes, you know, he'll learn from it. If he stays in it, next time we know he'll put extra effort into it."


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post Mar 10th 2006, 3:57 AM
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Great articles so far! Thanks for posting them.


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post Mar 10th 2006, 5:58 PM
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'American Idol' Final 12 Celebrate Making The Cut

'American Idol' Final 12 Celebrate Making The Cut
03.10.2006 7:09 AM EST

Kinnik Sky, Ayla Brown, Will Makar and Gedeon McKinney were eliminated Thursday night.

WEST HOLLYWOOD, California — Almost as challenging as predicting who's going to win the fifth season of "American Idol" was naming which contestant was the most excited to be the at the final 12 party Thursday night.

Perhaps it was 16-year-old Kevin Covais, who escaped the bottom three last week only get another lashing from Simon on Wednesday. "This is probably the greatest night of my life," he gushed as he and a giddy Paris Bennett walked the red carpet. " 'Incredible' is the only word I can think of."

Or maybe it was Rockingham, North Carolina, rocker Bucky Covington, a true fish out of water in Los Angeles. "Oh my God, this is a real red carpet," he marveled. "But heck, I'm game for any kind of party."

At the other end of the spectrum was local girl Katharine McPhee. "It's so cool being from L.A. and so close to all these events and now being able to be there," she said.

Then there was Taylor Hicks, a gray-haired 29-year-old who was told by Simon in his audition that he would never make even the semifinals. "I love proving people wrong," Hicks said, adding his signature "Wooh!" "This is a dream come true for me. If I can keep singing each week, I'll be doing good. I heard Ray Charles when I was 10 years old, and I've never looked back since. I've studied Sam & Dave and Otis Redding and James Brown. I'm trying to dance like James Brown, and I'm hoping it works."

Hicks worked the press line with Melissa McGhee, another contender for most-excited, considering the judges predicted she would be packing her bags. (For the record, Kinnik Sky, Ayla Brown, Will Makar and Gedeon McKinney were eliminated.) "This whole process hadn't sunk in until I sat down and looked over to Lisa [Tucker] and she was like, 'Oh my God, this is the top 12!' "

He's already been through the contest and did alright for himself, yet Bo Bice was quite thrilled to be at the Pacific Design Center soirée. He had just returned to the show to perform his single "The Real Thing," but even more memorable was meeting this season's rockers, Covington and Chris Daughtry.

"I told Bo he's the reason I auditioned," Daughtry said. "I always thought it was cheesy and pop-oriented, but he came on and did his rock thing and I was like, 'Alright there's nothing stopping me.' "

"That makes me feel good to know that maybe by taking a chance I inspired others to take a chance," Bo said.

Really, though, the most excited person at Thursday's party was probably Dean Banowetz, the "Idol" hairdresser.

"I can't wait to get my hands on these guys," he said. "They all have 'Dumb and Dumber' bangs. It's driving me crazy! Taylor, I want to give a cut and color, and I'm still trying to figure out what to do with Bucky."

Judges Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson certainly weren't vying for most-excited "Idol" player. The two downplayed the eliminations that took place a few hours earlier.

"It was nothing that mattered really," Cowell said. "No one was gonna win out of that group."

"Gedeon could've gone far, but he wouldn't have won," Jackson added.

The judges did sing the praises of Daughtry, Hicks, Kellie Pickler and Mandisa, but called most of the song choices during the semifinals terrible. And neither Cowell nor Jackson were optimistic about next week's Stevie Wonder theme.

"All the Stevie songs are hard to perform so it's going to be tough," Jackson said.

The judges also wondered whether "Idol" would crown its fifth straight Southerner, as eight of the 12 hail from the South.

So what's in the water down there?

"It's our Southern hospitality," Pickler theorized.

"I think it's the food," added Bucky, who has professed his love for biscuits and gravy on the show.

"The power of God is down there. We're bringing soul and sharing it with the world," Bennett said.

The other four finalists, however, are hoping to end the streak.

"I just do what I'm feeling, and if I can portray it you can feel it with me," Denver's Ace Young said.

"The North will prevail," Covais predicted.

The "American Idol" finals begin Tuesday.


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Greensboro News Record 2/24/06 'American Idol’ watch

'American Idol’ watch

WHO: Chris Daughtry, 26, of McLeansville

WHAT: “American Idol,” season five

WHERE: Women perform

WHEN: 8 p.m. Tuesdays, men 8 p.m. Wednesdays, vote results 8 p.m. Thursdays — all on Fox (WGHP, Channel 8)

WHAT DID HE SING? “Wanted Dead or Alive,” by Bon Jovi

WHAT DID THE JUDGES SAY?

— Randy Jackson: “... That was really, really good. You have a great recording voice. I love the performance. I thought it was the bomb. You’ve got it dude. You’ve got it. ...”

— Paula Abdul: “I don’t even know where to begin because I am so wowed by you and I’ve been wowed by you from Day One. ... You are going to go all the way.”

— Simon Cowell: “... Good choice of songs. For me, for the first time tonight, now I’m hearing somebody with potential ... now you’ve got to start believing in yourself and show charisma because you’ve actually got a great recording voice ....”

HOW HE DID HE RESPOND? Daughtry mouthed “thank you” to the judges and told show host Ryan Seacrest: “I think I understand where they’re coming from and I can do it.”

SHOW RESULTS: After a vote by viewers, four contestants were booted off the stage, but Daughtry and the other three singers from North Carolina — Heather Cox, of Jonesville; Bucky Covington, of Rockingham; and Kellie Pickler, of Albemarle — were safe. Leaving the show were Becky O’Donohue of New York; Bobby Bennett of Colorado; Patrick Hall of Arkansas; and Stevie Scott of California.

GRAND PRIZE: A $1 million recording contract.


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post Mar 10th 2006, 6:21 PM
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WCNC 2/24/06 Have You Heard? All 4 N.C. contestants survive 1st 'Idol' round

Have You Heard? All 4 N.C. contestants survive 1st 'Idol' round
National audience got to vote for favorites

08:38 AM EST on Friday, February 24, 2006

Kellie Pickler of Albemarle and the other North Carolinians made it through the first round of "American Idol" Thursday night and will be singing on Fox TV next week.

She gave the strongest performance of the N.C. contestants on Tuesday, despite a case of nerves. Pickler, 19, sang Martina McBride's "How Far."

Also in the running are Heather Cox, 22, of Jonesville; Bucky Covington, 28, of Rockingham; and Chris Daughtry, 26, of McLeansville.

Pickler has emerged as one of the most recognizable semifinalists, based largely on her personal hardships that include a father in prison and a mother who abandoned her, and her fresh innocence. She revealed that the trip to Hollywood was the first plane trip she has taken.

"You've got the likability factor up to here," judge Paula Abdul told her on Tuesday's show, raising a hand above her head.

"I'm really nervous," Pickler told host Ryan Seacrest.

This week's eliminations were the first time the national audience could vote after weeks of auditions. Cut were Becky O'Donohue, Stevie Scott, Bobby Bennett and Patrick Hall.

Next week, men will sing Tuesday, women on Wednesday. Another elimination of four contestants is Thursday.

Cox had been fighting a sore throat as late as last week.

She sang "When You Tell Me That You Love Me" Tuesday night and got lukewarm reviews. "It was forgettable. You just got it wrong, said judge Simon Cowell. "Your personality just evaporated."

Daughtry sang Bon Jovi's "Wanted Dead Or Alive." Abdul said: "You have the true making of a star."

And Covington, who sings in a band and works at a body shop in Hamlet, sang Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Simple Man." Judge Randy


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post Mar 10th 2006, 6:35 PM
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Daily Progress 2/24/06 Fluvanna alumnus survives 1st 'Idol' round

Fluvanna alumnus survives 1st 'Idol' round

By Christi Wampler / Daily Progress staff writer
February 24, 2006

Will Chris Daughtry win 'American Idol'?

Former Fluvanna County resident Chris Daughtry must have made a good impression on the nearly 40 million people who voted in this week's first round of "American Idol."
The 26-year-old performer has survived the first cut and stands among the remaining 20.

Daughtry, who makes his home with his wife and two stepchildren in McLeansville, N.C., attended Fluvanna County High School in the late '90s. Daughtry has performed with rock bands since high school, and before trying to make it on "Idol," he was a member of the alternative rock band Absent Element in North Carolina.

After his performance of Bon Jovi's 1986 hit "Wanted Dead or Alive" on Wednesday, the judges, including the brutally honest Simon Cowell, had plenty of praise to heap on the singer. Randy Jackson was first to speak, saying "That was really, really good."

Paula Abdul gushed about Daughtry's performance, crediting him with having confidence, artistry and a good stance during his rendition of the song.

Cowell added to the positive comments by saying that Daughtry has a great recording voice. And in typical Cowell fashion, he added something negative, although his criticism was more constructive than nasty. He advised Daughtry to work on his charisma, a comment he also made to the rocker during his original audition in front of the judges in Denver.

Jackson went on to say "You've got it," and Abdul concluded, "You're going to go all the way."

But Daughtry hasn't only caught the attention of Randy, Paula and Simon. Entertainment Weekly's Web site called Daughtry's performance the best of the night in its Thursday wrap-up of the show.

EW.com's Michael Slezak said, "You'd have to be deaf not to recognize that Chris's rough and ready 'Wanted Dead or Alive' not only was superior to all of his competitors' songs tonight but actually injected a needed jolt of soul into Jon Bon Jovi's original." Hundreds of readers posted their response to the article, and many agreed with Slezak's critique, or at least conceded that Daughtry is one of the top four performers.


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post Mar 10th 2006, 6:48 PM
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Times Dispatch 2/24/06 Two 'Idol' entrants advance

Two 'Idol' entrants advance

Safe!
Both Elliott Yamin and Chris Daughtry made it through the first round of viewer voting, announced live last night on Fox's "American Idol."

Not so lucky were Becky O'Donohue, Stevie Scott, Bobby Bennett and Patrick Hall, the first of the 24 semifinalists to be eliminated from the singing competition.

Yamin, 27, of Richmond and Daughtry, 26, who graduated from Fluvanna County High School before moving to North Carolina, were never in jeopardy during the hour-long results show.

Although most of the show was spent creating tension, Yamin did get the opportunity to comment on the compliments he got from Simon Cowell -- the most critical of the AI judges -- after his Wednesday performance.

"After five seasons, I think potentially you are the best male vocalist we've ever had," Cowell had told the fledgling singer.

"It was definitely a confidence booster," Yamin said last night, "but if you remember, I think the correct word was potential. . . . That means there's always room for improvement."


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GoTriad.com 3/1/06 Daughtry prepares for another round

Daughtry prepares for another round

Last week, the judges on "American Idol" had nothing but praise for McLeansville rocker Chris Daughtry.

But be certain, Daughtry, 26, has his eye on the singers he thinks are his strongest competitors.

"I've got some people in mind," he says of the other 19 singers vying for a seat on the show's top 12. He's hesitant, however, to whisper names.

Daughtry gets his next opportunity to rock out on the national stage tonight. He and the other nine male contestants sing at 8 tonight on Fox (WGHP, Channel 8). The 10 female contestants sang Tuesday night. On Thursday, the result of a national vote will be unveiled, and four people will head home.

Daughtry says he's there to win and is working hard.

"It's a lot of work, if you can call it work," he says. "I'm enjoying the whole aspect."

The former service adviser at Crown Honda in Greensboro now spends his days rehearsing, sitting for interviews and mingling with fans. He's flanked by security escorts wherever he goes.

"It takes some getting used to," he says. "At the mall, everybody recognizes you. It's cool. I feel like I was cut out for it."

Daughtry is one of four North Carolinians still in the running for the title of "American Idol" and a $1 million recording contract. The others are Heather Cox, of Jonesville; Bucky Covington, of Rockingham; and Kellie Pickler, of Albemarle.


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post Mar 10th 2006, 7:09 PM
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WCAV 3/1/06 Fluvanna Teachers Remember American Idol Hopeful

Fluvanna Teachers Remember American Idol Hopeful

March 1, 2006

Only ten male contestants remain on American Idol, and as you may already know, one of them is from our neck of the woods. But just how talented was the former Fluvanna County student back in high school?

In an old home video, the teen rocking with his band at the '98 "Fluco Fest" was none other than American Idol hopeful Christopher Daughtry.

Even back then, some teachers at Fluvanna County High School who knew the contestant, remember seeing something in Daughtry.

"I doesn't surprise me because I remember he had a lot of drive. He was always very focused. But it's always kind of a surprise to see someone on the show and recognize them I guess," said math teacher, Jason Davis.

Daughtry was also involved in the school play, The Wiz. Fluco choral director, Horace Scruggs, helped the senior prepare for the performance.

"Because he wasn't a choral student, it was the first time for him really singing. I know he had done some rock stuff with a band that they had in high school. So it was a little rough and I thing he still has the rough style, the rock style rather that I've seen on American Idol," said Scruggs.

Some however thought Daughtry may have been well known for another talent.

"I knew him more as an art student. He was very good and I kind of expected him to maybe do something with that," said art teacher, Diane Greenwood.

Davis actually keeps one of Daughtry's drawings in his classroom, and is holding on to the signed and dated piece.

"He actually used charcoal and pen and pencil, but he did a great job and I actually bought it from him at the art show for $50. So hopefully he'll win and it'll be worth a fortune," said Davis.

Many at the high school do believe Daughtry has a good shot at being the next American Idol.

"We'll talk about him at lunch. You're watching tonight, got to watch tonight. So, we're excited about him," said Greenwood.

"He's been real good. He's probably going to win it I think," said Michael Tolliver, who knew Daughtry as well.


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post Mar 10th 2006, 7:23 PM
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Mercury News 3/2/06 American Idol: Chris Daughtry a man among boys

American Idol: Chris Daughtry a man among boys
AEI Editors, 10:57 PM in Celebrities, Music, TV

The male singers had a much stronger showing this week than the females. But only Chris Daughtry, pictured at right, singing "Hemorrhage (In My Hands)" with his raspy, but powerful voice, really stepped up to show standout star power.

The other top performers:
Elliott Yamin ("Moody's Mood for Love") continued to impress with his R&B flow and is gaining confidence.
Gedeon McKinney ("Change is Gonna Come"): AEI has not liked Gedeon, but this week he was impressive with his throw-back style.
Jose "Sway" Penala ("Overjoyed"): AEI was stunned at how harsh the judges were to Sway. His voice seems pleasant to the ear and he seems likable.

Not bad:
Taylor Hicks ("Easy"): Just OK this week. Not inspiring as he has been.
Bucky "Mash potatoes are mash potatoes" Covington ("The Thunder Rolls"): Finding his niche.
Ace Young ("If I'm Not Made for You"): What the ... ?!

The bottom:
Will "Peter Brady"Makar ("Lady"): Like Simon said, he'd be great in "Cats" the musical.
David Radford ("The Way You Look Tonight"): Enough of the crooning already.
Kevin Covais ("I Heard it Through the Grapevine"): Uh... I don't think so.


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post Mar 10th 2006, 7:39 PM
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Reality TV Magazine 3/2/06 American Idol Boys – On A Boring Night, Chris Daughtry Sets The Place On Fire

American Idol Boys – On A Boring Night, Chris Daughtry Sets The Place On Fire

The America Idol boys picked up right where the American Idol girls left off and that’s not a good thing. While there were several ok performances, it was starting to look like no one was even going to get close to approaching some of the performances delivered last season on American Idol. That was until Chris Daughtry took the stage. In a performance that should put him on a fast train to the Final Twelve, Chris Daughtry set the place on fire. Chris’ performance was so far above the other performances that the other contestants probably should be worried that Chris might get 100% of the vote and send them all home.

The American Idol Top 10 boys show kicked off with Taylor Hicks singing “Easy Like Sunday Morning.” All three judges concur that it wasn’t one of Taylor’s best performances. However, it was still one of the better performances of the night. Hopefully, viewers won’t forget about Taylor because he had the dreaded first performance on the show, because Taylor definitely deserves to stay in the competition.

Elliott Yamin was up next, singing “Moody’s Mood For Love.” Randy Jackson gives Elliott a standing ovation for his performance, and Paula Abdul says Stevie Wonder would be proud (even though we don't know why he would care considering it was a James Moody song). However, Simon Cowell says “you can’t win a show like this with a song like that.” Elliott might not win with that song, but it definitely should be enough to keep him around for another week.

Ace Young sings “If I’m Not Made For You.” Randy Jackson says “I think you sing better than you let on.” Paula Abdul says “I really think that this is another good week for you.” However, Simon Cowell says “I think you struggle with the song tonight, and I think you are going to be very disappointed when you hear your vocal back on that.” Simon’s comments were actually surprising, because Ace was one of the stronger performances of the night. If one just looks at Ace, one might be tempted to think it was his looks that got him to this stage of the competition, but when Ace sings, it becomes obvious that his voice got him here. Ace is likely to get a record deal, win or lose on American Idol.

Gedeon McKinney sings “A Change I Gonna Come.” Randy Jackson says “You are a really great natural performer.” Paula Abdul says “You are a performer I feel we will see for decades.” Simon Cowell says “You are a funny little thing,” and adds “I thought it was a very good performance tonight.” Gedoen’s attitude in the Hollywood eliminations probably had many viewers labeling him as overconfident. Tonight, Gedeon proved he is not overconfident, but has the talent to back up his confidence.

Kevin Covais sings “I Heard It Through The Grapevine.” Randy Jackson says “I really thoroughly enjoyed that.” Paula Abdul says “You are infectious.” Simon Cowell says “The reality is that if I heard that on the radio I would turn it off.” American will likely concur with Simon and vote Kevin off. The only thing that might save Kevin is a sympathy vote over a joke by Ryan Seacrest comparing Kevin to Chicken Little that could come across as cruel to some viewers.

Sway Penala sings “Overjoyed.” Randy Jackson says “It wasn’t as good for me as last week.” Paula Abdul says “I feel like tonight you’re a little disconnected.” Simon Cowell says it “is exactly how not to do well on a show like this because that was nothing more than pure karaoke.” Sway could very well be on his way home unless his large fan base pulls him through.

Will Makar sings “Lady.” Randy Jackson says “It was just basically alright for me.” Paula Abdul says “too safe, a little bland.” Simon Cowell says “It was like an audition for Cats,” and adds “Eleven year old girls will love that.” In one of the funniest moments of the night, Ryan Seacrest starts undressing Will on stage, and Simon Cowell warns Will to “get off stage quick.” Normally the judges are right on target, but in our opinion, they got this one completely wrong. We felt Will actually made an excellent song choice that showed off his range.

Bucky Covington sings “Thunder Rolls.” Randy Jackson says “This was a great song choice for you.” Paula Abdul says “You hit every note right from the beginning.” Simon Cowell says “Bucky, I like you because I think you’re a very sincere guy,” but adds “I don’t see Bucky as the star attraction. I see him as the support for the stars.” Bucky did have a solid night, but his downfall could be that contestants need the support of their home states to thrive in the competition, and Bucky has the misfortune of sharing a home state with Chris Daughtry who wound up completely stealing the show.

David Radford sings “The Way You Look Tonight.” Randy Jackson says “I find myself being really bored.” Paula Abdul says “I feel like we’ve seen you perform better with other songs.” Simon Cowell says “It was uncomfortable.” This should have been David’s signature song, but unfortunately he did not deliver. David is at serious risk of being eliminated this week.

Chris Daughtry closes the show by singing “Hemorrhage.” Randy Jackson says “I loved it, loved it, loved it, loved it.” Paula Abdul says “Do you know how good you are?” Simon Cowell says “This was the only performance, remember this guys, which stands up in the real world.” Simon also adds “Tonight you are the standard every one of these guys should be looking toward, because it was in a different class.”

Our prediction for who is going home: Kevin Covais and Sway Penala. If one of these two squeaks through, then David Radford will likely fill the elimination spot. Post you opinion on who will be eliminated in the comments below.


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post Mar 10th 2006, 7:52 PM
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Extra 3/2/06 An 'Idol' Contestant Rocks the House

An 'Idol' Contestant Rocks the House
March 2, 2006

"American Idol" finalists Chris Daughtry brought down the house Wednesday night with his rendition of "Hemorrhage," a song from the multi-platinum rock group Fuel. And today, "Extra" discovered that his performance put him on radar with the band members themselves!

Fuel's very own bass player, Jeff Abercrombie, came only to "Extra" to declare what he truly thought of the performance. "Wow," he said. "What a great job. This guy delivered. And he delivered like he'd written the song himself."

The normally disagreeable judges unanimously sang Chris' praises Wednesday. Randy revealed he loved the performance, while Paula asked, "Do you know how good you are?"

Simon wouldn't comment on that, but he had plenty to say about the rest of the guys' performances. He took the "Extra" stage to sound off to his girlfriend (and "Extra's" own) Terri Seymour about the good, the bad and the downright inexplicable.

First, Terri asked how he really feels about Kevin. "Everybody roots for that guy because he has a sweet innocent little face," Simon revealed. "I mean, again, you can't listen to those vocals and go, 'We've found the next Luther Vandross here.'"

While the rest of America loves Kevin, the only thing Simon loves about him is his new nickname: "Mr. Potato Head."

While interpreting the King of Mean can be tricky business, Terri attempted to decipher the world according to Simon.

Simon revealed he looks up to Donald Trump because, "I like happy billionaires. Most of them are miserable."

And with the Oscars right around the corner, who will Simon root for? No one! "When you're at one of these things, you despise everybody there if they win something," he revealed. "And yet everybody's pretending to be happy when deep down they're not."

"I want to make the real awards show where everybody really shows how they feel," Simon continued. "Like when 'The Amazing Race,' which is a terrible show, beat 'American Idol,' I wanted to get up on the stage and say, 'I'm not being rude, but whoever voted for this, you're nuts.' Not that I'm bitter."

He may be a little bitter, but don't look for sarcastic Simon to run home crying! He's content with where he is in his life. "If you could trade places with anybody, who would it be?" asked Terri. "No one because I have you, darling," Simon said.

Looks like we caught a glimpse of Mr. Softy! But don't expect to see that side of Simon on "American Idol," every week of FOX!


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