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HOME > American Idol > American Idol 9

Casey James: I knew my 'American Idol' end was coming, ready to go

By Christopher Rocchio, 05/21/2010 

Not only was Casey James prepared to be eliminated from American Idol on the cusp of making the ninth-season finale, but he was also ready to be booted at any other point in the competition.

"I've been prepared at every single round from the beginning of the show. You never know, and you have to be prepared either way," James told reporters during a Friday conference call.

"Every single time that I made it through, obviously you're elated and you're happy. The other night when I didn't, I kind of knew that was coming, so I was definitely prepared that night."

The 27-year-old from Fort Worth, TX became the tenth finalist eliminated from American Idol's ninth season during Wednesday night's live results show on Fox -- setting up a battle between Crystal Bowersox and Lee Dewyze in next week's finale.

"I'm the kind of guy that accepts what happens and is always happy about it. Had I gotten second or first, obviously I would be happy. But I can tell you that I'm definitely happy with where I landed," James told reporters. "I'm going to make the most of it."

In addition, James said that none of the Top 3 finalists really discussed the impending voter results before they were revealed.

"Nobody really talks about things as far as that goes," he said.

"I think everybody understands anything can happen. Nobody really wants to talk about it. Obviously I'm happy for them. I think everything happens for a reason and I'm exactly when I should be. I have no doubt about that. I'm super-happy to be here."

James chose "OK, It's Alright with Me" by Eric Hutchinson for his first Tuesday night performance, and the selection was largely panned by the judges. However he said that's not the song he probably would have chosen if finalists were allotted more performance time.

"Time limitation is a real issue when you get to pick a song. There were so many songs that I wanted to do, and if I had three minutes, it would have opened a whole new realm of possibilities," he explained.

"But when you have a minute-and-a-half to work with, you have to use that to your advantage and best of your abilities. So it changes things up a little bit. I went with what I thought was best for the show in that time limitation. That's why I picked what I picked."

James was also told by judge Kara DioGuardi to stick to his "core demographic" of "young girls and women," and James told reporters he hopes he's a more well-rounded musician than that.

"I definitely am not offended. That's her opinion. I know nothing of demographics and my marketing skills are obviously poor or I wouldn't have been doing the same bar gigs for 11 years," he added.

"So I definitely don't take offense to it, but I would also like to think that I have a few more people out there that like what I'm doing."

DioGuardi was one of James' biggest supporters during the competition, beginning with when he auditioned in Denver, CO last summer and he took his shirt off.

"Who's to say I'd be here had I not done that? I think if you feel like you can back yourself up and not be the guy that took his short off -- because hopefully that's not what I am now -- than I would say do what you need to do to get the ball rolling," he told reporters, reflecting on the incident.

"There's a possibility had I not done that I might not have made it past that first round. It definitely wasn't something that I thought of or even realized was going to happen. But I'm so thankful it did because coming back, I really had that drive to knock it out the first chance that I could. I think I did surprise the judges. It obviously worked out."

James also overcame some personal odds by making it on American Idol after he was involved in an accident six years ago when a driver turned into him while James was doing "70 to 75 MPH" on his motorcycle. James told reporters he "broke a lot of bones and flew a long way."

"Nobody on the scene thought I would make it," he added. "But they did a really good job of taking care of me."

James said he's "honored, happy and proud" of making it as far as he did in the competition and is "elated" for what's next.

"Next is a record and going and doing music," he said. "The reason for the show was to allow us to do music, and that's what I intend on doing because that's what I love. Now I have the opportunity to do it, so it's go time."

As for Bowersox and Dewyze's impending battle, James declined to pick a favorite.

"They both have very unique and standout sounds. That pretty much says it," he told reporters.

"You can't say anything else other than that. They are who they are, and that's why people are voting for them. I think that's just going to continue and it's going to grow and I think it's going to be a crazy, crazy good show."

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