Charley Jenkins becomes the first finalist cut from 'Nashville Star'
By Christopher Rocchio, 06/10/2008
Charley Jenkins was revealed to be the first finalist eliminated from Nashville Star's sixth season during last night's premiere broadcast of the NBC reality series.
The 29-year-old from Roosevelt, UT who currently resides in Murray, UT was ousted from the competition by Nashville Star's sixth-season judging panel -- country singer, songwriter and producer John Rich; fifth-season host Jewel; and songwriter and producer Jeffrey Steele.
"I love country music," said Charley after his elimination was revealed. "I wish all these guys the best luck in the world. You guys are in for a heck of a show, so stay tuned to Nashville Star."
Charley performed Tim McGraw's "I Like It, I Love It" during last night's sixth-season debut -- which was filmed last Monday at Nashville's Acuff Theater in the Opry Entertainment Complex.
"I love that you're willing to come out here and work the crowd," said Jewel about Charley's performance. "I just don't buy it. I love your willingness to do it, but you're not quite in your body... It's just not all working together."
"I can make it real simple," said John. "First of all, I like you a lot, and I like your voice a lot -- when you're not running around like you're a Garth Brooks impersonator in Las Vegas or something like that."
"You've got a voice there," Jeffrey told Charley. "But I hate it, I hate it, I want no more of it. It kind of sounded like a karaoke machine to me... You've got a really cool voice, didn't see it in that performance. I hope you don't have to go."
After all the Top 12 sixth-season finalists performed, host Billy Ray Cyrus revealed either Charley or Alyson Gilbert, a 28-year-old from Crookstown, MN who currently resides in Jackson, TN, would be eliminated from the competition.
"This is the hardest part of the job obviously. But everybody brought some really great, great energy tonight," said Jeffrey. "Out of these two performers up here, my vote is for Charlie -- for you to go home."
"Well I disagree with Mr. Steele here," said John. "Alyson, I feel there are other girls on this cast that smoked you tonight. I did not see the progression that I wanted to see happen from the first time I saw you to tonight -- I saw the same mistakes again. It's been a little while since then, and this is all about progressing into something that can be a really superstar success. So my vote is for you to go home tonight."
With Charley and Alyson each receiving a vote from the first two judges, the decision was ultimately left up to Jewel.
"This is awful. I am so glad America votes after tonight. This is a huge struggle," said Jewel. "Alyson, I think that the first time I heard you sing you were a little bit pageanty. I didn't feel like it was coming from your heart. You came out a second time and you really made a great adjustment. I feel like tonight you went backwards. We're not looking for a great singer, we're looking for a great artist -- somebody that's going to stand out and have something to offer. Charley, same thing in a different way. Tonight the job really is to decide who has the best shot this year at becoming the nextNashville Star. I hate doing this... My vote is that Charlie we're going to send you home."
Nashville Star's Top 11 sixth-season finalists are Alyson; Ashlee Hewitt; Coffey; Gabe Garcia; Justin Gaston; Laura Fedor and Sophie Zalokar; Melissa Lawson; Pearl Heart, which consists of sisters Amy, Angela and Courtney Krechel; Shawn Mayer; Third Town, which consists of Jeffrey Fairchild, James A. Kouns and Tony "Little Tony" Mosti; and Tommy Stanley.
Nashville Star's next episode will air live on Monday, June 16 at 9PM ET/PT. One of the Top 11 sixth-season finalists will be eliminated and the remaining ten will perform. Home viewers will then be able to vote for their favorite Top 10 act immediately following the broadcast.
The Top 10 act that receives the lowest number of home viewer votes will then be eliminated during Nashville Star's live June 23 broadcast.