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May 26, 2011  | by: Virginia Van de Wall

Scotty McCreery

“American Idol” always makes us wait two hours on finale night before announcing the winner of the “Idol” crown. This year, in those 120 minutes, legends and pop superstars including Beyonce and Tony Bennett shared the stage with the Top 13 before Scotty McCreery was announced as the winner.

Opening the show, the Top 13 belted to Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way.” Soon to follow, James Durbin sang with Judas Priest and Jacob Lusk teamed up with Kirk Franklin and Gladys Knight. It wasn’t until Casey Abrams showed up on stage with Jack Black and sang Queen’s “Fat Bottom Girls” that I was up off my couch dancing and in awe of the duet. Who knew Jack Black could sing that well!?! Check out the video below:

The ladies of the baker’s dozen (minus Lauren), sang a medley of Beyonce songs including, “Single Ladies,” “To The Left,” “Get Me Bodied,” “If I Were A Boy,” and “Déjà Vu.” Towards the end of the mash-up, Queen B herself joined the young women belting and dancing to “Crazy In Love.” It was nice to hear the diva sing one of her older hits rather than “Run the World (Girls),” as I expected her to.

Kaylee Rinehart was the next performer, sharing the stage with Tony Bennett as they sang “Steppin’ Out With My Baby.” Lil’ Jon made a small and insignificant appearance introducing TLC as they sang “No Scrubs” and “Waterfalls” with four of the Top 13 women. I was more than thrilled to hear these songs that were popular in the late ‘90s being sung on the show.

“Idol” winner, Scotty ‘McHottie,’ had an absolutely incredible performance singing “Live Like You’re Dying” with country star, Tim McGraw. Could this performance be any more perfect? Check it out:

Closing in on the second half of the night, J-Lo took the backseat on stage while she shook her booty to her hubby, Marc Anthony’s, beautiful performance of “Aguanile.”

The Top 13 gentlemen sang their medley of Tom Jones songs including “Kiss,” “She’s a Lady,” “What’s New Pussycat,” “Green Green Grass of Home,” “Love Me Tonight,” and “Delilah.” Legend Tom Jones joined the men on stage singing “It’s Not Unusual.”

Lady Gaga went big as she sang “Edge of Glory” on a large, mountain-like structure, jumping from ‘the edge’ as the song came to an end.  “American Idol” Season 4 winner, Carrie Underwood, belted “Before He Cheats” with runner up, Lauren Alaina.

The show managed to squeeze in three more performances before announcing ‘McHottie’ as the winner. Beyonce had an absolutely stunning vocal of “One Plus One,” and Reeve Carney joined Bono and The Edge to sing “Rise Above.”

The final performance was very fitting to this year’s season, as Steven Tyler took the stage and sang like everyone knows he can to “Dream On.” Watch below:

The two-hour finale was everything I was hoping it would be and more. Scotty McCreery was my favorite “Idol” contestant and I’m ecstatic that he won. Looks like the heart throb isn’t on the market, however, as he and Lauren seemed awfully friendly. I believe the camera panned off the two right as Lauren kissed ‘McHottie’ on the lips! As he sung his new single, “Love You This Big,” he hugged her and whispered in her ear, “I love you baby.” My heart melted. I think the two make a perfect couple.

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