American Idol semi-finalists were limited for the first time this year with their song selection, choosing a song from a list of 50, according to the show’s executive producer. However, one of the first eliminated contestants says that they weren’t exactly allowed to select their own song, and in his case, producers actually chose for him.
“We’re allowed to choose three songs from a list. Every contestant is for sure to get one of the songs, and I didn’t get to get any of my songs because they gave the songs out to all the contestants before that,” Garrett Haley said in his exit interview with MTV. Because his three songs were chosen, he says, “I just ended up with having to choose from the list again. And I didn’t really get to choose, they just threw the song at me and said, ‘Here, sing this one.’ [He laughs.] And I was like, ‘OK.’ It was a total surprise to me, but I took what I got, and I did what I could do with it.”
Meanwhile, the semi-finalists songs were on iTunes as part of Apple’s new sponsorship of the show, but to keep things “fair and balanced,” Apple said “sales of performances from American Idol contestants from the current season will not be reflected in the iTunes charts.”
Someone apparently forgot about the measurement of popularity, which was present for some time and captured by Vote for the Worst. It showed that Jason Castro and David Archuleta were by far the most popular contestants, followed by David Cook and Michael Johns. However, one of the eliminated contestants, Colton Berry, placed 12 of 24 in terms of popularity, so clearly song sales aren’t a good indication of votes, although eliminated contestant Amy Davis was the least popular, and Garrett Haley was 22 of 24.