VIDEO: Lee DeWyze Delivers A Knockout American Idol Performance

May 19 2010, Published 9:48 a.m. ET

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The competition may finally be catching up to frontrunner Crystal Bowersox. On Tuesday night, American Idol viewers were in for a treat as the last three contestants belted out not one, but two, songs with Lee DeWyze delivering a knockout final performance that proved he does have the chops to be the last person standing.

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DeWyze first started with Lynyrd Skynyrd's Simple Man. Before his performance, the Illinois-native told Ryan Seacrest that he "wanted to pick a song that he related to" and after putting his gritty and soulful voice to the track, the judges swooned. But it was his second solo- chosen specifically for him by Simon Cowell- that left the judges "stunned."  His take on Leonard Cohen's Halleleujah proved he had a voice worth the Idol title.  This was, as Randy Jackson suggested, the "the biggest moment" in DeWyze's career.

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Crystal Bowersox started off by attempting Melissa Etheridge's Come To My Window, which surprisingly fell just short of memorable. But the dreadlocked-mother clawed her way back to the limelight on her second song Maybe I'm Amazed picked by Ellen DeGeneres. Leaving behind her guitar for the number, Bowersox let loose the searing voice we've come to expect from true music idols. "I couldn't have asked for more," said a beaming DeGeneres shortly following the performance.

Kara DioGuardi

And though the final contestant, Casey James, wasn't able to floor the judges, he clocked in one of his best performances yet. His first song Ok, It's Alright With Me, was unanimously panned for lacking any spark to warrant him a place in next week's lineup.  But then, the curly-haired Texan took to John Mayer's Daughters - chosen by Randy and Kara DioGuardi - and shined from start to finish.

Unfortunately for James, when you're down to the wire and America's watching, almost doesn't count.

Look for Dewyze and Bowersox to make it through Idol's elimination (featuring Justin Bieber) Wednesday night at 8pm EST on FOX.



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