May 20, 9:19 AM TV Examiner Jackie Kass
Casey James was voted off American Idol last night, but he has no regrets. In fact, he compared his time on Idol to winning the lottery. “Winning $10 million in a lottery or $100 million, it can’t be bad,” he said. James referred to the fact that his life will be forever changed due to the exposure he received on American Idol. Below is a list of other third place finishers, many of whom have found success during their post-Idol careers:
* Season 1: Nikki McKibbin – Debut album: Unleashed
* Season 2: Kimberly Locke – Debut album: One Love
* Season 3: Jasmine Trias – Debut album: Jasmine Trias
* Season 4: Vonzell "Baby V" Solomon - My Struggle
* Season 5: Elliott Yamin – Debut album: Elliott Yamin
* Season 6: Melinda Doolittle – Debut album: Coming Back To You
* Season 7: Syesha Mercado
* Season 8: Danny Gokey – Debut album: My Best Days
* Season 9: Casey James
Of all the third place American Idol finishers, Kimberly Locke, Elliott Yamin, Melinda Doolittle and Danny Gokey have experienced the greatest degrees of success. Elliott Yamin’s album debuted on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart at #3, selling 90,000 copies in its first week. It was certified gold on October 12, 2007. Plus, on the Billboard.com's end of decade charts, Elliott Yamin's self-titled debut album was placed at #39 on the top independent albums of the decade list. Danny Gokey released his debut album just two months ago and he is currently the opening act on Sugarland’s Incredible Machine tour. Kimberly Locke was the first artist signed to Randy Jackson’s dance music label, Dream Merchant 21. Her latest single Strobelight continues to do well on iTunes. Melinda Doolittle’s debut album has sold over 53,000 copies. So even though he came in third place on season nine of American Idol, Casey James has a tremendous chance of securing a recording contract and launching a successful career. It’s just like winning the lottery.
Casey James reflects on his American Idol experience with good memories. “At first, I had no expectations of getting past the stadium. You make it past that level and you want to go to the next level and so on and so forth. It really sinks in when you go back home. You realize this is so much more than anything you ever expected,” James said. Fans should not be disappointed about his elimination. Casey James will be back in the spotlight very soon.
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