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American Idol Runners-Up Bios

Feb 19, 2015

What's happenned to all the runners-up from years past? Often they become even more successful than the winners themselves. Check out these bios on your fave second-place, singing sensations!

Season Seven :: David Archuleta

Birthdate: December 28, 1990
Birthplace: Miami, Florida
At the age of 17, David Archuleta has proved himself to be one of the best young phenoms to ever grace the Idol stage. Inspired by Les Miserables at the age of six, David began singing, and soon used his angelic voice to win the Junior Singers competition on Star Search. This led to him meeting some original Idol finalists including champ Kelly Clarkson and impressing them with his voice. Flash forward to 2008, DA’s performance of the Beatles Imagine, was arguably the most impressive vocal of the entire competition, and he has flown through the competition with the support of millions of fans across the country. Even though he fell short of the Idol title, David will definitely go down as one of the best male vocalists the show has ever seen. You're sure to hear a lot more from this young star.

Season Six :: Blake Lewis

Birthdate: March 25, 1984
Birthplace: Redmond, Washington
Blake Lewis' talent for beat boxing got him noticed at his American Idol audition, but his innate talent for entertaining is what got him through to the finals. Blake won praise from the judges for his contemporary sound and ability to stand out as an individual. Blake says he's looking forward to making a "jazzy hip hop" album in the future.

Season Five :: Katharine McPhee

Birthdate: July 21, 1981
Birthplace: Sherman Oaks, California
Katharine McPhee's mother is a cabaret singer and voice coach who Kat would imitate as a child. All that early practice paid off big time when Katharine sang God Bless the Child at the San Francisco American Idol audition and landed a spot on the show that would make her a household name. Never one to keep her enthusiasm to herself, Katharine kissed all three judges on the lips when she made it into the final 24. Kat's self-titled debut album hit shelves in early 2007, but she was later dropped by her label.

Season Four :: Bo Bice

Birthdate: November 1, 1975
Birthplace: Huntsville, Alabama
The long-haired rocker from Alabama may have finished second but he could still be on his way to musical stardom. During the fourth season of American Idol, Bo Bice's unique style made him a fan favorite and he outlasted heartthrob Constantine Maroulis in the "battle of the rockers". Before stepping on to the American Idol stage, Bo Bice had already performed at several large music festivals throughout the southeastern United States. Bo has a very loyal fan following, a strong vocal range and music mogul Clive Davis has already told Bice he looks forward to making an album with him. Bo signed to RCA Records and released his album, The Real Thing. He's since got married and had a son.

Season Three :: Diana DeGarmo

Birthdate: June 16, 1987
Birthplace: Snellville, Georgia
Before auditioning for season three of American Idol, Diana DeGarmo already had some showbiz work under her belt. She had appeared in productions of Annie and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, had become a finalist on the show America's Most Talented Kid and won the title of Miss Teen Georgia! She was one of the youngest contestants to ever audition for American Idol, but also one of the most talented. Just six months after becoming the runner-up on season three, Diana DeGarmo released her debut album, Blue Skies. Diana played Penny Pingleton in the musical Hairspray on Broadway from 2006 and 2007.

Season Two :: Clay Aiken

Birthdate: November 30, 1978
Birthplace: Even though he ended up being the runner-up of American Idol's second season, Clay Aiken managed to hold onto his star status by getting signed to RCA just weeks after AI wrapped up. Since then, Clay came out with his debut album, Measure of a Man, which went to number one on the Billboard Charts the first week it was released. Clay has also founded the Bubel/Aiken Foundation, which is a non-profit organization that hopes to bring awareness about people with disabilities and how important it is to include them in all aspects of everyday life. Clay released a Christmas album called Merry Christmas with Love in 2004. Recently, he has appeared in the Broadway stage production of Spamalot.

Season One :: Justin Guarini

Birthdate: October 28, 1978
Birthplace: Doylestown, PA
Justin Guarini became a fan favorite during the first season of American Idol. With his wild, curly locks and deep, soulful voice, he was an instant heartthrob. Despite coming in second place, Justin secured a recording contract with 19 Entertainment and a star role in a blockbuster movie. Unfortunately, due to poor box-office sales for his flick, From Justin to Kelly (which also starred American Idol sweetheart Kelly Clarkson), and differences of opinion on the direction his musical career should take, RCA cancelled his record deal in 2003. He's since chopped off those luscious locks and released his second album, Stranger Things Have Happened, under his own record label.

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