Lee DeWyze Makes Idol's Top Two

Mt. Prospect's Lee DeWyze rocks it out on "American Idol"'s semi-final

Mt. Prospects’ hometown crooner is one step away from becoming the "American Idol" champ.

America sent Casey James home Wednesday night, leaving Mount Prospect's own Lee DeWyze and Crystal Bowersox to battle it out for the top nod.

Following a trip home on May 14th -- complete with a parade, a concert and more than 41,000 fanatic fans --  DeWyze headed back to the idol stage and rocked Tuesday's semi-final.

Judges cooed over his rendition of “Simple Man” by Lynyrd Skynyrd (DeWyze’s choice) and Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” (judge Simon Cowell’s choice).

“Lee, you are what this show is all about… you are the heart of this show,” judge Kara DioGuardi commented. “You owned the entire night.”

DeWyze’s journey to Hollywood has been a remarkable one. Expelled from high school, then a worker in a local paint shop, DeWyze has used the support of his family and friends to live out his dream.

“I totally know this is what I’m supposed to do,” DeWyze told the Daily Herald. “There is no backup plan for me.”

DeWyze’s competition comes in the form of 24-year-old Crystal Bowersox and 27-year-old Casey James, both of whom struggled with their semi-final song choices. James will likely be eliminated tonight, carrying mere 20/1 odds of winning, according to Bodog.com. The betting site lists DeWyze’s odds for victory at 4/7.

“American Idol” airs tonight at 8 p.m. on Fox.

And if DeWyze makes it through, be prepared to vote like a mad person. Chicago certainly will be. 

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