They’re both 24 years old and were both discovered during the Chicago auditions. And on Wednesday night it was down to the wire as American Idol Season 9 Top 2 finalists Lee DeWyze and Crystal Bowersox waited (patiently!) to find out who would be the winner of American Idol. So who won American Idol 2010?
In a star studded 2-hour extravaganza- that included a goodbye tribute to longtime judge Simon Cowell- host Ryan Seacrest waited until the final minutes of the show to reveal the name of the American Idol winner.
The show was essentially a tribute to the 1970’s- and a celebrity roast for departing judge Simon Cowell.
The Top 12 Idol contestants were all on board, kicking off the show with a group rendition of the Alice Cooper anthem, “School’s Out” (complete with scary, black-eyed schoolgirls). Then Alice himself came out. In case you’re wondering how old Alice Cooper is, he’s 62.
Siobhan Magnus and Aaron Kelly sang a duet of the Bee Gees tune, “How Deep is Your Love”. And of course, the two remaining Bee Gees came out on stage to join them.
Michael “Big MIke” Lynche was joined onstage by Doobie Brothers lead singer Michael McDonald for the song “Takin’ It to the Street”.
Season 9 alums Lacey Brown, Didi Benami, Siobhan Magnus, Katie Stevens and Paige Miles sang the Christina Aguilera song, “Stronger”, before XTIna herself came out to belt out a ballad from her latest album, Bionic.
Then we had a group medley of some Hall and Oates songs, before H & O came out to sing “You Make My Dreams Come True”.
Crystal Bowersox dueted with singer Alannis Morrisette on the angry ex anthem, “You Oughta Know”, before Idol Season 4 winner Carrie Underwood performed her latest single, “Undo It”.
But the best kept secret of the night was Casey James’ performance. The Top 3 finalist began singing the Poison ballad, “Every Rose Has It’s Thorn” and was surprisingly joined onstage by Bret Michaels, who was recently hospitalized for a nearly-fatal brain hemorrhage. I was shocked to see Michaels, as his live appearance on Celebrity Apprentice on Sunday had him moving a little shakily. He looked like his old self tonight though, strumming his guitar and jamming with Casey.
Next up was a medley of songs with Lee DeWyze and the band Chicago.
Former Idol judge Paula Abdul couldn’t stay mad at the American Idol execs forever- she showed up to say goodbye to her longtime friend and coworker, Simon Cowell with a stand up routine.
Finally, a bevy of former Idol winners came out of the wood work- Kelly Clarkson, Reuben Studdard, Fantasia Barrino, Carrie Underwood, Taylor Hicks, Jordan Sparks, and Kris Allen. Hey– where was David Cook?
The final Top 12 medley featured Janet Jackson, and then Lee and Crystal were joined onstage by legendary rocker Joe Cocker.
Finally, Ryan Seacrest delivered the news that Lee DeWyze was the winner of American Idol Season 9.
An emotional Lee seemed extremely grateful, and frankly, he probably needed this break more than Crystal. Don’t feel too bad for Crystal. I’m sure she had a half dozen record deals before she even got back to her hotel room.
So there you have it– Lee DeWyze is your new American Idol 2010.
Check back for the latest news on American Idol Season 10, which is set to start auditioning later this year.
American Idol, FOX TV, May 26, 2010