Candice Glover and Kree Harrison will compete in next week's "American Idol" season finale. Angie Miller was eliminated on the May 9 results show.
I'm a little surprised. I predicted that Angie, rather than Kree, would face Candice in the finale. It seems like Angie's been one of the producers' favorites since the early stages of the competition. Plus, I thought an ability to connect with younger voters would secure Angie's spot in the finale.
Yeah, that didn't happen.
But Kree's success isn't entirely shocking. Viewers obviously connected with Kree this week, thanks largely to the emotional footage from her hometown visit, when she discussed her deceased parents.
Plus, Kree's a country singer. I obviously overlooked the power of country music in the "Idol" universe. It seems like country music fans often get serious about voting at this stage of the competition.
Something else to consider: Angie's from the Northeast, which doesn't seem like a huge "Idol" voting bloc. Candice and Kree are both from the South, a region that's home to many "Idol" winners and runners-up.
After learning she was eliminated, Angie repeated her performance of "Never Gone." She got very emotional and couldn't make it through the song.
Discussion time: Was the right singer eliminated?
Thursday's results show came hours after judge Randy Jackson announced he's leaving the show after this season. He didn't directly address the news on the episode, though host Ryan Seacrest made a comment hinting at the announcement. Seacrest said someone was leaving the show Thursday -- meaning a contestant -- but he eyed Randy while uttering the line.
If that wasn't awkward enough, the group performance of "Who Says" was marred by apparent sound problems.
Also on the episode, "Idol" runner-up Lauren Alaina sang "Barefoot and Buckwild" and Alicia Keys sang "Tears Always Win."
We learned auditions for next season will start soon. Good news for local folks: For the first time in a few years, "Idol" will look for talent in Atlanta, when auditions are July 26. View a list of audition cities here.
Jimmy Iovine reiterated his comments from Wednesday night, and we had the pleasure of watching the video for Mariah Carey's new song, "#Beautiful." My favorite reaction to the video came from USA Today blogger Brian Mansfield, who compared it to a Hardee's/Carl Jr. commercial.
Want more "Idol" news? Listen to me talk about the show Fridays at 7:15 a.m. EST on 103.7 Lite FM. Click here to listen online. I'll also live-tweet Angie's conference call with reporters Friday afternoon. Follow me on Twitter: @ssorich