May 20, 2010
Posted: 05:16 PM ET
Less than 24 hours after being voted off AMERICAN IDOL, semi-finalist Casey James says he’s feeling elated.
“I never really thought a guy like me would make it so far,” explains the 27-year-old Texan native. “I’m still soaking it all in, being grateful for all I experienced.”
Was he surprised to be eliminated? “Surprised?” he echoes. “Like I expected to be in the finals? No. You can’t really ‘expect’ results on AMERICAN IDOL. You’ve got to be prepared for anything. I went into a bunch of Wednesday nights thinking I might be packing up and going home.”
James cites his performance of John Lennon’s “Jealous Guy” as one of his favorites, partly because it let him show a different side of himself. He hesitates when asked which performance he’d most like to have as a do-over, then finally settles on “Blue Skies”, which he did during the Frank Sinatra theme week mentored by Harry Connick, Jr.
He says it was a challenge to put down his guitar and sing with a hand-held microphone, so he’d like a shot at trying it again. “But you know,” he laughs, “I could probably do it over a whole lot of times and still not get it right.”
As for what he’s learned from his IDOL experience, James is still working that through. “So much,” he says. “To have this kind of chance…I learned a whole lot.”
James drove all night to IDOL auditions in Denver at the prompting of his mom, Debra. When it comes to the stir he created during those auditions when he took off his shirt, he has no regrets. “I probably wouldn’t have made it through if I hadn’t done it,” he admits wryly. “I really hadn’t shown them much with my music.”
He claims he didn’t think much about shedding his shirt until hours later during a call to his mom as he was driving home. “She said, ‘You do know this is going to be on TV,’” he recalls. “And that’s when I when I realized…”
Next week’s showdown pits Crystal Bowersox against Lee DeWyze. It will be IDOL’s first mixed-gender finale in four seasons. Casey James sidesteps when asked for a prediction about who will win. According to him, there’s no way to tell what’s going to happen. But he adds, “I’m just looking forward to being there for a really great show.”
As for what’s he’s most looking forward to: “Making my music. Just making my music.”
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