Scotty McCreery was named as the Season 10 American Idol at L.A.’s Nokia Theater on May 25, 2011, beating out fellow contestant Lauren Alaina. The newly chosen winner sang his new single “I Love You This Big” after the announcement, which came after a record-breaking 122 million votes.
Some of the biggest duets of the night included fourth place contestant James Durbin singing “Living After Midnight” and “Breaking the Law” with Judas Priest. The female contestants, including Alaina, Naima Adedapo, Ashthon Jones, Thia Megia, Haley Reinhart, Karen Rodriguez and Pia Toscano, sang melodys of Beyonce and TLC songs with the famous singers. Alaina paired up with Season 4 Idol winner Carrie Underwood to sing the latter’s hit single “Before He Cheats,” while McCreery performed with Tim McGraw during the song “LIve Like You Were Dying.”
McCreery’s win came after some of the biggest changes in the reality competition’s history were implemented this season. Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez replaced Simon Cowell, Ellen DeGeneres and Kara DioGuardi on the judges panel. Record industry mogul Jimmy Iovine mentored the Top 13 every week, instead of alternating different Hollywood singers. As a result, ‘American Idol’s executive producer Nigel Lythgoe said this season’s contestants were the most talented ever.
Written by: Karen Benardello