BY: Lynn Elber
LOS ANGELES – The last four ‘American Idol’ contestants left standing say their rivalry is a friendly one.
The singers told a news conference Friday they’ve remained close even as they strive to win.
“We’re all friends,” said Lee Dewyze, 24, of Mount Prospect, Ill. “But as far as the show, at the end of the day, all of us do want to win. That’s why we’re here: We want that No. 1 spot … (but) we want it for ourselves, not because we don’t want anyone else to win.”
No matter the contest’s outcome, said Crystal Bowersox, 24, of Toledo, Ohio, they’re all champs who could end up with hit songs on the radio.
Casey James, 27, of Fort Worth, Texas, agreed, saying, “It’s really a matter of how badly you want to do this and how hard you push yourself.”
There is a sense of competition when song choices are made for their weekly performance, conceded Michael “Big Mike” Lynche, 26, from Queens, N.Y.
But when worry sets in about grabbing the best tune, Lynche said, “you realize nobody sings the songs that you sing” or has the same style.
Next week, the foursome will be mentored by singer-actor Jamie Foxx and will perform cinema-themed songs.
Asked if they’d change anything that’s happened during the contest, Dewyze offered a tongue-in-cheek reply: “More bagpipers,” he said. Dewyze performed “Hey Jude” last month with a bagpiper as his unlikely accompanist.
The news conference with the four finalists also was an unusual move for “American Idol.” It coincided with a ratings drop for the show and a loosening of its grip on the No. 1 spot, which has gone the past two weeks to ABC’s ‘Dancing with the Stars.’
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