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American Idol Finalists Who Still Made it Big

Yes, though the first place winners of each American Idol season get all the glory, there are a select number of finalists who still managed to make it big in the music industry.

Gone were the days when only the winner takes it all, as even the finalists have found their place in the spotlight and launched singles that made it to the charts, and then some. Here are just a few examples:

Clay Aiken
Clay Aiken

Clay Aiken, the ever-familiar runner-up in AI season 2, has already garnered awards for hit singles he released in 2003.

It was in that year when Billboard awarded the now 30-year old pop rock artist the best selling single for “Bridge Over Troubled Water.”

After that, in 2004 and 2005, Clay received a Billboard award for best selling Christmas and Christian album, respectively, for his cover, “Merry Christmas with Love,” which sold more than 2 million copies worldwide.

Moving on to American Idol Season 3, who could forget Jennifer Hudson?

This now singer/actress was eliminated in the earlier half of the season, and even Simon Cowell himself said she was not talented enough for AI.

Jennifer Hudson
Jennifer Hudson

However, this Dreamgirl made her way to the silver screen and wowed audiences with her role as the headstrong Effie.

This big break for Jennifer bagged her an Oscar, Golden Globe, and Screen Actors’ Guild award.

The soundtrack of Dreamgirls didn’t do so bad, either, as it reached number 1 on US charts in 2006, and sold more than 1.25 million copies.

Season 4’s runner-up, the long-haired rocker Bo Bice also had his share of success, and had a pretty busy year in 2005 and onwards.

He launched his debut album in that year, entitled, “The Real Thing,” which was already ranked fourth in its opening week. “See the Light” was the second album, which was released in 2007.

A year after that, Bice toured for US troops in Afghanistan and Kuwait.

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