It may have been the week of giving back on “American Idol,” but that didn’t stop the competition from sending another contender home on Thursday night.
Before the dreaded announcement was made, which reduced the number of remaining contestants to seven, Ryan Seacrest revealed that, thanks to donations from viewers and companies, “Idol Gives Back” had already raised over $60 million.
As for the status of the contenders, Brooke White (who struggled on Tuesday with her rendition of Carole King’s “You’ve Got A Friend”) actually made it to safety, followed by rocker David Cook and baby-faced favorite David Archuleta.
After a break and several pieces dedicated to their “Idol Gives Back” theme, Ryan also sent dreadlocked Jason Castro and country-loving chanteuse Kristy Lee Cook to the safe seats.
Syesha Mercado and Carly Smithson were left in bottom three, along with Australian Michael Johns – his first time he wasn’t sent to safety.
And unfortunately for Michael, he never returned to the safe side.
Michael was eliminated from the competition, as the audience and the Aussie rocker reacted in complete shock.
“I’m definitely surprised,” Michael told Ryan of his elimination. “I enjoyed singing that song [“Dream On” by Aerosmith, which he performed Tuesday]. It’s a song about dreams. If there’s a song to go out on, that’s definitely a good one.”
Before he sang his final song – “Dream On” once again — the judges gave Michael some advice.
“You gotta keep on rocking dude,” Randy Jackson said.
“Based on the performance, Michael, I think you know it wasn’t the right song, you have to learn a lesson from this,” Simon Cowell said. “You’re a very good singer and a very, very nice guy.”