OFFSTAGE: How Safe Is American Idol‘s Scotty McCreery?

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

Fans of the last country man standing on American Idol, Scotty McCreery, breathed a big sigh of relief when he was not eliminated on Thursday night’s (May 12) results show. James Durbin, 22, was the one sent home. But it was the duet between Durbin and North Carolina native McCreery that made me think that neither one is really ready to be thrust into the big time. Now, maybe they didn’t choose the song. So to whoever did? Big mistake. You don’t take the Brad Paisley and Keith Urban duet, “Start a Band,” and just assume two amateurs can pull it off. First of all, both McCreery and Durbin sounded downright bored. And, even worse, so unconvincing. I know not every singer can sing like he means it, but it would’ve been nice if this duet had been saved for two guys who really made you believe they were going to grow out their hair, get a guitar, cut up some jeans, find a few good buddies, scrape up some money, buy a van and learn “Freebird” and “Ramblin’ Man.” If that performance was any indication, my guess is that McCreery could be the next to go home.

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.