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'American Idol' results: And the eliminated contestant is ... Casey Abrams


At the beginning of Thursday night's "American Idol," in which Casey Abrams was (this time far less shockingly) eliminated to turn the top six into the top five, Ryan Seacrest gave us a hint about what was to come: "I can tell you this," he told us. "A lot of fans are going to be disappointed with tonight's result."

Well, count me among them, because Casey was one of my own personal favorites.

I liked his knack for surprising song choices and musical virtuosity. I liked his silly, self-deprecating humor and his wacky way with a stand-up bass. (He seemed like a stand-up guy with a stand-up bass.) I liked his tight little scoot around the stage and the peculiar way he had of slapping only one hand when he walked up to the throngs in the front row. I liked the audacity of his Jennifer Lopez kiss and its impetuous innocence. I even liked his shaggy 'do (before and after), his swoon the last time he was eliminated and his trademark growl, which, he explained Thursday night, stemmed from all his passion for music rushing to get out one very small aperture.

That curious theory was funny and honest and interesting and cute in a weird way. And that, right there, is the reason I like Casey.

Mentor Jimmy Iovine, who wrongly predicted that Casey would be safe this week, suggested that Casey's growl could get him into trouble. "Casey's got to realize that the family dog does not vote on this show," Jimmy quipped.

And maybe jazz fans don't vote either, because my guess is that it was Casey's refusal to play it safe (except for a few weeks there right after his remarkable save) and his stated desire to bring jazz to the masses that ultimately did him in.

If we had any doubt that Casey's "what the heck, I'm just milking this thing and having a blast" casual attitude had returned — especially after watching him nibble at his nails right there on live TV as the camera panned across him at the beginning of Thursday night's show (I know results shows are nerve-wracking, but ick, Casey!) — and that it might get him in trouble with voters, there could be little doubt after Ryan put a fan question to him: "If you could do a duet with anyone, living or dead, who would it be and what would you sing?"

Casey's answer: Oscar Peterson, the legendary jazz pianist and composer (an all-time great), who died in 2007. "He's a very famous jazz musician," Casey informed the millions of Americans who, very sadly, probably had no idea who he was talking about. Then he went on to explain that it was because of Peterson's remarkable chord progression, among other things. No amount of enthusiastically encouraging nods from Randy Jackson was going to save Professor Casey at that point.

Which will not make me miss him any less. Casey reminded us of all we were losing with his final number, "I Put a Spell on You." (Not that Ryan hadn't already reminded us: "This is what talent looks like, ladies and gentlemen," he said.) Casey kissed and hugged each judge, noisily bussed a whole row of women in the audience, embraced the family members of his fellow contestants and tackled a few of those contestants before ending by looking right into Haley Reinhart's eyes and singing, "because you're mine."

What a way to confirm that they're a couple. They're a couple, right?

Here's wishing those two crazy kids a long and happy and laughter-filled relationship — and long and happy (and healthy!) careers making music.

Because, as last year's runner-up pointedly sang on Thursday night's show, "If you want to sing a song, you just sing it." She also reminded us that the most talented contestant doesn't always win the "Idol" crown.

Casey's talent and passion for music will outlive his time on "Idol." And he'll assuredly find success, because dang if he didn't put a spell on many of us.

What do you think? Are you sad to see Casey go? Or did you feel it was his time?

'American Idol' recap: The top six take on Carole King

Full Show Tracker coverage of "American Idol"

— Amy Reiter

Photo: The final six, from left, Haley Reinhart, Scotty McCreery, James Durbin, Lauren Alaina, Casey Abrams and Jacob Lusk. Credit: Michael Becker / Fox.

Comments () | Archives (111)

I'm just glad it wasn't Haley...

But I really liked Casey. He was my Top 02. I will be sad next week without his creativity, his big bass, and even his crazy faces (okay, not the last one). But he is going to be missed...

Yes, I am very sad Casey left but not surprised. It is so evident this year that the voting system on American Idol is flawed leaving the winner in the hands of 13-15 year old girls who vote for the cutest guy or the girl they most relate to. Talent has nothing to do with it. Casey is the most talented contestant Idol has ever had.

"Because, as last year's runner-up pointedly sang on Thursday night's show, "If you want to sing a song, you just sing it." She also reminded us that the most talented contestant doesn't always win the "Idol" crown. "

Funny, Amy, I watched the show and Crystal gave no reminder about Lambert and Siobhan Magnus...
I do't think it is likely Haley Reinhart will win and right now it is a tossup on Haley-James-Scotty on talent and marketability.

It's hard to wish anyone to go at this point in the show. I think it's between the "rocker" and the "country boy" - love them both. Go James and Scott!

Sad to see Casey go, it was so refreshing to have some real musical talent on the show. Can't wait to see him on tour.

This is craziness! Casey Cool! went home! I am speechles!

What nice comments! I am very sad to see Casey go! He was my favorite! I did appreciate his talent and I enjoyed his dry sense of humor! I looked forward to what he would do next! He was interesting! I think he will have a successful future!

What is wrong with America....Jacob should have been voted off. Not Casey. What a voice, what a presence, Performer like no other!

this is soooooooooooooooooooooooooooo wrong. Jacob lust should have gone home a long time ago...his singing is ok but his vibrato is poor and he sings so many notes off key. he is a shouter not a singer. Casey is uber talented and always brings a fresh take with more than just singing...he is already a star.

i was truly hoping for james durbin and casey abrams in the final and then either would have been a great win.

Like Scotty and the girls but James Durbin is truly a star and has been since day one. I hope he wins the whole shebang!

Dang, I voted for Haley because I thought she needed the vote more than Casey. Boy was I wrong! I'll never do that again. Casey is my choice as the most artistic person in that contest. It's probably for the best that he didn't get voted all the way through because the fame and fortune that go along with the title would only tempt him to stray from the performer that he truely is. Cheers -J

The contestant to leave today would have been my second or third choice. I feel that although all of the conestants have had potential, most of them have no clue of what entertainment entails. Both the girls have great, but sporatic voice control. Love Scotty, James, Stephano, and Paul. Paul was already a contender and will be recording and performing......he has that Rod Stewart type of voice and presence. James has a wide variety of talents and I am predicting he will be the 2011 Idol winner. Scotty in a tight 2nd. No matter how you look at it, this season was full of potential stars and I do not envy the judges. The best nights have been the Beatles and Carol King nights.....two of my favorite entertainers!

I would love to hear the finalist left do some Journey, Starship, and Elvis!

I think Jacob should have gone before Casey. Casey is a music genious. Maybe not an American Idol....but seriously? His diversity made the show interesting...you never knew what he was going to do! That's what keeps you watching! Sad...really sad!

Casey wouldn't have been voted off if he had been able to receive the full support of all his followers. I am an Alabama resident. The tornado coverage was on all night yesterday and still today so we were unable to see the performances or the eliminations. We had no phones or internet until only shortly ago and a large portion of this state is still without power or phones due to substations being down and cell towers being knocked over. I log online only to find that one of the most talented people of our generation has been voted off. I am so saddened for not having had any way to do my part in ensuring his survival until the end and feel that if we hadn't been so ravaged here in the South Casey would still be there.

What an upset. The worst part of this whole thing is we have to put up with Jacob yet another week! He does have talent but he is soooo annoying! Sorry, but America got it wrong on this one. Casey is a very talented musician but as the article states he was too jazz for the younger voters. Haley is so amazing and I will remain hopeful she will hang in there. Next week let's see Jacob go home.

Casey going home ended the show for me this season. Thanks Casey, and keep bringing it on!! You are uniquely gifted and a wonderful person.

I'am very sad about Casey leaving. My husband and i enjoyed him very much, never knowing what he would come up with. It won't be nearly as entertaining to watch idol now. I hope he'll have a great career and show us more of his great talent in the future.

I was very sad to see Corey Go as he was my favorite. Are Haley and Him really a couple? I sure hope so, they are so cute! I am sure we will see him again because he is so talented and I would be a fan as I always have been :)

Casey was indeed one of the most talented musicians ever to compete in A.I., but he most certainly wasn't going to be in the top 4 because he was too different and his song selections were not really the best choices for the audience. Like any other artist who really "does his own thing", Casey has to accept the fact that a lot of people are going to LOVE what he does as well as a lot of people are Not going to like it. He will definitely go far performing in the right places (like night clubs and small theaters), but it was his time in A.I. to go now. He definitely was able to show off his talent.

well i'm not surprised, eventhough Casey was really a good singer,sad to say he doesn't have the looks and charisma to make it on the top...

I am very dissapointed casey is gone. he had a charisma, and charm about him that stood out. he seemed like a true artist, not needed to be "made" he will go on to do something great i'm sure, but will be missed!!!

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