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It was interesting to hear David say what I said in that something was just "off" about him last night. It's true. He just wasn't clicking even though he was in key.
I didn't pick up on that because when he is not "on" he is still good. I think his power vocals are as clear and strong as anyone I have ever heard. But consider this: the mind is a complex unfathomable mystery- maybe he does not want to be the American Idol winner. Maybe he would rather be the "International Rock Journyman of the 21st Century"- I think he really loves his craft. I don't think the term "Idol" fits him very well- that the label could be a negative-something he might have to live down if he has ambitions to rise to the level of people with staying power like Eric Clapton or Bonnie Raitt.
I personally believe, with only two exceptions (Kelly and Carrie), the runners-up are usually better than the winner anyway. And I think being 3rd or 4th runner up can be even more advantageous - witness Daughtry. In other words, I agree with you. Perhaps David sees the advantages of not being the winner in the end.