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'American Idol' news conference: The Davids sing each other's praises

Dd2 "I didn't really know that [judge Simon Cowell's] apology was warranted," mused David Cook, during a news conference at the Nokia Theatre on Wednesday, just hours after being handed the "American Idol" crown. Cook wasn't expecting Simon Cowell's apology, but that doesn't mean he wasn't happy to take it. "An apology from Simon is a rare gem!" He chuckled. 

Cook was in his glory during the news conference, and rightfully so. He couldn't help but look back at how far he'd come over the course of his singing career, even recalling a grade school teacher who "made me sing at a Christmas pageant." 

It was Cook's moment of glory, but he still made sure to shower praise on his humble competitor, David Archuleta. "He has more talent at his age than I know what to do with at 25," marveled Cook.

When asked which of his performances was his favorite, Cook didn't miss a beat. "The last one," he said, still glowing from the rush of that final performance.  "Tonight was just about exhaling. "

As for what comes after the exhale, Cook seemed utterly clueless –- and content with that.  "I actually walked into this with no expectations and I'm walking out of this with no expectations," he stated simply.

But despite his calm, cool and collected approach to the future, Cook couldn't help but get emotional about the present.  Namely, that moment up on stage with his mother and brother. In August, Cook, his mother, and his brother all waited in line together "in Omaha, Nebraska, at 5:30 in the morning when it was raining." Then, nine months later, Cook's mother and brother stood beside him once more, as he won "American Idol."  It was like coming "full circle," he explained. 

After Cook was whisked away, Archuleta emerged, grinning from ear to ear. "Um, it's a big relief," he stammered. "Oh my gosh, no more getting judged after each performance!" 

The questions inevitably turned to that other, bigger David, and Archie lit up. "He's like my big brother!" he exclaimed.

On the subject of Cowell's apology to Cook, Archuleta was quick to take a stance. "I'm glad [Simon] apologized to Cook," emoted Archie, as though personally insulted by Cowell's comments. "Because I don't think anyone realizes how much work we put into this." Over the course of the conference, the sense of solidarity in Archie's tone was unmistakable; criticism of Cook was also criticism of Archie, and a win for Cook was also a win for Archie.

When the subject of Archuleta's own success in the competition came up, he was as modest as ever. "I didn't even know I'd make it past the first round, for Pete's sake!" he exclaimed.  As for making it, not just past the first round, but into the final two, Archuleta was utterly baffled. "I just can't believe that people have decided for me to be next to him of all people!" 

And Cook wasn't the only one Archuleta gushed over.  He couldn't say enough kind things about his "Idol" mentors, especially Mariah Carey. "Mariah had me doing things I was afraid of doing before, like using my head voice," recalled Archuleta.

The questions kept firing, and the young Archuleta fielded them with enthusiasm and sweetness, only halting once, to lick his lips. "Sorry," he muttered with his trademark bashful smile. "My lips are getting dry."

-- Stephanie Lysaght

Can't get enough of 'American Idol'? Join us for a chat at 11:30 a.m. PST.

 
Comments () | Archives (16)

Tuesday night's finals was very exciting television. Two guys - extremely talented - competing and entertaining. I hope "Daddy Rose" allows young David to return to his high school and experience a 'normal' senior year this fall. A word about the Wednesday show - what a piece of _______. Could have used a few more product placements and film plugs. Mike Meyers should be embarrassed.

Our entire family took great pleasure in speed dialing our votes for David Archuleta....our ages range from 8 to 61 ! We all gasped with disappointment and our 8 year old grandson was devastated....truly devastated ! He kept saying, " I voted for him 20 times " ! We assured him that although David (A) was not the winner, he WAS a winner! We also talked with him about how David (A) responded when David C's name was read. He is a very, very fine young man who is destined for nothing but great things as he continues to grow in his music. I told my grandson we will buy every single one of his songs. We can only pray he stays true to himself and surrounds himself with good people. Blessings and good luck to David Archuleta! We look so forward to seeing and hearing from him again soon !!!!!!

I am so sick of American Idol and all the other stupid reality shows - who cares!

Our entire family took great pleasure in speed dialing our votes for David Archuleta....our ages range from 8 to 61 ! We all gasped with disappointment and our 8 year old grandson was devastated....truly devastated ! He kept saying, " I voted for him 20 times " ! We assured him that although David (A) was not the winner, he WAS a winner! We also talked with him about how David (A) responded when David C's name was read. He is a very, very fine young man who is destined for nothing but great things as he continues to grow in his music. I told my grandson we will buy every single one of his songs. We can only pray he stays true to himself and surrounds himself with good people. Blessings and good luck to David Archuleta! We look so forward to seeing and hearing from him again soon !!!!!!

Congratulations to both the Davids! So glad they are so close... David A. can't wait for your CD to come out- I expect great things!

They are both such lovely people. I love David Cook's voice and music, but David Archuleta has an absolutely gorgeous voice and I hope that he finds enormous success doing what he loves. I hope that for both of them, actually.

Great article.. Nothing like basing your story on an apology that you never explain why it was warranted.

I am happy for both Davids. They will both see good long and successful (but probably different) careers i believe. I know the Archuleta famiy and David is a friend of my daughter. He won't be back to Murray HS i don't think. Too much to do and it really has nothing to do with his dad. Lay off the guy. He is doing his job as a father and working to protect his son and help him reach his dreams and goals. Nothing more or less than most any other dad (or mom) would do for their kid. David is lucky to have him and knows it.

If you are so sick of AI and all reality shows why are reading this, quit watching thats easy. What a couple of great guys they both will do well, I love DA and everything about him and I truly respect DC it couldn't have been a better twosome up there, now lets get on with life and wait for those cd's and good news about them.

i can't believe i didn't vote for archie tuesday night. ugh! with praise like that from the judges, i thought for sure david a. was going to win and i prompty went to a bowl of ice cream and my tivo-ed programs post "idol" on tuesday night. how disappointing. i can't imagine how david a. must feel putting all that hard work into the show and to get jipped in the final minute or two of the series, knowing he's the better singer in this SINGING competition. but the judges knew exactly what they were doing making david cook appear the underdog in the final moments. oh well. after three seasons, i'm done with american idol. i find sytycd so much more interesting, although their voting system is just as rigged... le grande sigh.

I, too, was devastated by the fact that David Archuleta did not win the title...I gasped with disbelief when I heard the announcement and have been grieving over it for the past 24 hours...not too embarrassed to say that I actually cried several times...and I am not a teenager! It was just so painful to watch the other David take the title that David Archuleta should have won. I read that this year more men between the ages of 26 and 35 voted than ever before, and that is why David Cook "won". David A. was obviously the superior singer and I think too many people assumed that the title was his and neglected to vote.

I was touched by David's breathtaking, pure vocals and his humble demeanor...aside from that, he is just adorable! I hope he will have the opportunity to finish his high school diploma (even if home schooled), attend university or a music conservatory to deepen his understanding and knowledge of music. It is obviously his love and life's purpose.

Too much has been made over his father's "interference". So many young entertainers have parents who are not involved enough in their children's careers. What a great family the Archuletas must be to have produced such a wonderful son!

I wish David all the best. He is truly worthy of the title "American Idol"....yet I believe that other, greater things lie in store for him.

Amazing! Simon Cowell apologizes to David Cook because he implied that David A had it in the bag therefore implying that maybe David C wasn't worthy? Simon has so many more people to apologize to for worse things, from outright rudeness to people to telling Americans what they do and don't like. Go back to England Simon!

I can't wait to see what David Archuleta does next! I dialed my 48 year old fingers off for him on Tuesday night, but alas ! Cook is a dynamic performer and I wish him all good things.

Nice to see David finally get some praise from the media. The scrutiny has been fierce and opinions have been skewed toward the negative. I don't think any 17 year old kid deserves the criticisms he's received, and David perhaps the least of all.

I'll be supporting David Archuleta's long-term career with my heart and my pocketbook.

Both David Cook and David Archuleta raised the bar with respect to talent and professional behavior in this year's American Idol competition. In contrast, Mr. Cowell and the producers lowered the bar in their manipulative behavior of these young hopefuls.
First, the producers included Michael Johns and Carly Smithson in order to provide depth to the talent field, then proceeded to cut them down falsely; i.e. Smithson's song choice week after week. If they do not want European talent on the show, include that in your rules upfront, but don't use the talent for your own purposes.
Second, Cowell's apology was warranted, but it came in order to save face. It was obvious that the producers knew the final vote count and hence the apology.
This is a rare television production incorporating a large viewing audience of all ages. The producers need to take stock of their decisions, and maybe take their cue from the sense of fair play exhibited by David Cook, David Archuleta, and their American Idol competitors.

There is no question the right David won. Both have great voices, but Archie showed very limited versatility. What he did, he did well, but any time he left his comfort zone (i.e., a non-ballad), he was strictly mediocre. I think it was really his immaturity speaking. He needs more left experience before he can really be an "american idol". Cook paid his dues by doing the shows for five people. He proved he could sing anything from rock to ballads to musical theatre. And he was a very upstanding, confident yet humble individual. He deserved the title.

The best thing that ever happened to Archuleta was not winning. He constantly looked like he was about to crumble under the pressure. The last thing he needs is more pressure from being the winner. Now hopefully he can be a teenager and get some life experience. He has plenty of time.

I will like to sing on your show please i,m 15 year old.


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