An estimated 50 million viewers were watching as country crooner McCreery was revealed to be lip-syncing at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York.
Meanwhile, Alaina can now join the pantheon of singers -- yes, we mean you Christina Aguilera, Cyndia Lauper and ... um ... Scotty McCreery -- who've flubbed the national anthem on live TV.
After this year's 'American Idol' finalists Lauren Alaina and Scotty McCreery made the top two, life has changed for the teenagers in the last few months. Scotty was named this year's 'American Idol' winner, and Lauren the runner-up, and both have been focusing entirely on their careers ever since. First, they kicked off the American Idols LIVE! Tour with fellow finalists from the year, and now they're working on their debut albums. AOL TV's friends at The Boot sat down with both Scotty and Lauren before the Nashville stop of the trek to get the scoop on their rapid rise to fame, along with Lauren's recovery from her big fall.
Where were you this time last year?
Scotty: At this time last year, I would have been on the baseball field. We have spring ball for the school, and summer ball, getting ready for the school. So, I would have been on the baseball field pitching away.
And where are you a year later?
Scotty: Yesterday, I was in the studio, working away and recording some songs for the new album. We've got two or three done. I've definitely been writing. For this album, I don't think any of my original stuff will be on it, because it's happened so quick for me, and it's rapid-fire. We're definitely still writing and jamming out on the bus.
McCreery and Alaina appeared together on the show and were shown a photo of McCreery awkwardly kissing the side of Alaina's face. McCreery claimed he was trying to back away. Ann Curry asked them how they are staying grounded after becoming so successful so quickly. Alaina credited their faith.
"You kissed him," Philbin said. "How did it work now? If he won, you'd kiss him, if you won, he'd kiss you." Alaina said McCreery was too shy for that sort of thing. Philbin said that was because McCreery was from North Carolina, but Alaina is from Georgia, where perhaps the girls are a bit more forward. That made Alaina laugh. "Aw, you're cute," she told Philbin.
Alaina finished up her appearance with a performance of her new single, 'Like My Mother Does.' Next week, she and McCreery will appear together at the 2011 CMT Music Awards.
Host Jay Leno and fellow guest Piers Morgan began by asking Lauren about her relationship with 'Idol' champ Scotty McCreery. After insisting that they're just friends, Lauren summed-up the situation: "Everyone wants us to like each other but we just can't seem to do it!"
Then, discussing this week's 'American Idol' finale, Morgan spoke from experience as a veteran competition show judge and told Lauren: "I thought you were the better singer."
And that's when she landed the zinger. "I tried out for your show and didn't get it. Twice!" As Morgan reeled in surprise, she repeated that yes, she auditioned for 'America's Got Talent' -- not just once, but twice -- and "I didn't make it past the first round."
Lauren Alaina's final performance on 'American Idol' last night, a duet with her 'Idol' idol Carrie Underwood, wasn't short on emotions. The pair sang the country vixen's "Before He Cheats," showing that runner-up Alaina can hold her own with the biggest of stars.
Over the past few weeks, 16-year-old Chattanooga, Tenn. native has made a name for herself as quite the Southern chanteuse, pulling influence from Carrie Underwood to Faith Hill. The singer's stage presence and vocal prowess has been undeniable, as the teen can hit the highest notes with grace and precision. When she sang her country single 'Like My Mother Does,' she inspired judge Steven Tyler to say "The first time I saw you I thought you were my 'American Idol,' and now I think America will find it to be true." Take a listen to 'Like My Mother Does' below, premiering exclusively at AOL Music.
His performance of 'Gone' by Montgomery Gentry showed off the Carolinian's vocal range from Southern baritone to country-fried tenor. McCreery also hit all the right notes on his first single 'I Love You This Big,' a classic-sounding country tune, prompting Idol judge Jennifer Lopez to say McCreery was a "beautiful storyteller" and he facilitates the song with his heartfelt emotion.
Now McCreery is offering fans an exclusive first listen of his new single, 'I Love You This Big,' exclusively through AOL Music.
McCreery told 'Entertainment Weekly' that, "[It] feels absolutely amazing. I mean, I'm on top of the world right now. It's just a moment I'll never forget."
The 17-year old said that while he had allowed himself to dream of winning the title, he'd managed to push those thoughts to one side and concentrate instead on the competition.
"You've got to control that. You've got to focus on what's ahead and focus on the song you're singing that week. Luckily, it's gotten me here."
They both gave it all they had, bringing us two new songs at the end of the performance night that we could both see as hits in country music radio. In fact, as far as their career potential goes, this result almost doesn't matter.
The night was so packed with special guests and performances from all the Top 13 Idols from Season 10 that by the time Ryan said to dim the lights, we couldn't believe it was already time to find out who'd won.
The pair tackled Underwood's hit 'Before He Cheats,' but even in this performance, Alaina had to give more of the song to Underwood than was probably originally intended. Still, she was given her moments to shine, and it proved to be a very solid performance.
We couldn't help but think, while watching this finale, that the results almost don't matter. Both Lauren Alaina and Scotty McCreery have huge careers just waiting for them in country music. Alaina, however, has a better shot at the same crossover success Underwood has found in pop music.
Alaina is reportedly suffering from laryngitis, and producers were so concerned about the state of her voice yesterday that recently booted contestant Haley Reinhart was brought in as a last-minute substitute in case she couldn't perform.
Luckily, she didn't have to withdraw, but the show's on-site physician reported that she "blew out one of her vocal chords" during rehearsal, and that he "gave her a lot of medicine" to help her perform.
According to Access Hollywood, the strain placed on her voice meant that Alaina had to resort to communicating via pen and paper at the post-show press conference last night. Her rival, Scotty McCreery, gallantly lent a hand, reading her notes aloud to the assembled reporters.
The final round of singing featured new songs that would become the respective singles of Scotty McCreery and Lauren Alaina, should they win the competition. But we have a sneaking suspicion both songs will get released, anyway.
McCreery was given 'Love You This Big,' which was a little kitschy in the title and premise, but allowed him to showcase both the low end and the higher end of his register; a fact that was appreciated by judge Randy Jackson.
The 'American Idol' Season 10 finale airs Wednesday, 8PM ET on FOX.
For the third round, though, Alaina managed to do just that with a perfectly suited song: 'Like My Mother Does.' In-house mentor Jimmy Iovine chose the song, which we're told will become her single if she wins the season. We have a feeling it might just get released even if she comes in second, though.
Ironically, 'Like My Mother Does' was first released first on Season 7 finalist Kristy Lee Cook's album.
The 'American Idol' Season 10 finale airs Wednesday, 8PM ET on FOX.
'American Idol' Finale: Carrie Underwood and George Strait Picked the Songs, Bono and the Edge to Perform
Plus, veteran Irish rockers Bono and the Edge will take time out of their North American tour to perform on the results show Wednesday night with cast members from the Broadway musical, 'Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark.'
According to 'USA Today,' Lauren and Scotty will each perform one song chosen for them by their personal musical hero. Specific details haven't been released yet, but we do know that Season 4 winner Carrie Underwood chose one for Lauren, and that the legendary George Strait picked out Scotty's.
FOX was so excited about the record number of votes they recorded for this stage of the competition that they put out a press release touting it Thursday morning, which stole a little thunder from Ryan Seacrest's announcement that 'Idol' pulled in 95 million votes.
Of course, with the addition of online voting this season, shouldn't they be expected to reach new records each week in the voting? But it's not how many votes they racked up that mattered. It's who got the most votes. Which two move on to next week's finalists?
'American Idol' airs Wednesdays and Thursdays at 8PM ET on FOX.
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