And just like that, the results from American Idol’s 2021 season finale are in — and your next American Idol is …. Chayce Beckham!
After a lively, star-studded finale on ABC Sunday night, host Ryan Seacrest announced that Chayce had received the most votes nationwide, beating out fellow finalists Willie Spence and Grace Kinstler.
During Sunday night’s show, Chayce showed off his talent multiple times, taking the stage to sing both solo and with some of the guest artists. Most notably, Chayce earned lots of praise for singing The Beatles’ “Blackbird.”
But well before the finale, Chayce was already proving to be a top contender in the competition. In the audition round, Chayce impressed all of the judges performing “What Brings Life Also Kills” by Kolton Moore and The Clever Few. Katy remarked at the time that Chayce sounded like “the heart of America.”
From there, Chayce continued to crush all of his performances, including when he sang “Hard Times” by Tyler Childers during Hollywood Week and Zac Brown Band’s “Colder Weather” during the live shows.
Over the course of the competition, Chayce amassed a dedicated fanbase, who seemed over the moon when he was announced as the winner. “CHAYCE WON IM SCREAMING IM SO HAPPY !!!!!!! #AmericanIdol CONGRATS @ChayceBeckham !!! BEEN VOTING FOR YOU SINCE DAY ONE,” one fan tweeted. “Wow! A ‘rocker’ actually won #AmericanIdol?!?! Never thought I’d actually see that happen! Way to go Chayce!!” someone else said. “grace and willie have INCREDIBLE voices but chayce was an all around artist and ive been rooting for him since day one i am SOOOO HAPPY TONIGHT WOOHOOOO,” another commented.
But of course, finalists Willie and Grace now also have fans — and they were understandably upset with Sunday’s results for obvious reasons. In particular, many thought Willie, who came in second place, would be crowned the champion instead. “I really like Chayce but let’s be real…Willie should’ve won,” one viewer said. “Willie was the best voice to ever sing on American Idol. Robbed,” a different fan remarked. “And this is why I don’t watch any competition shows, Willie was robbed! #epicfail #americanidolfinale #AmericanIdol,” another tweeted.
Of course, just because Willie didn’t end up on top doesn’t mean he won’t find success elsewhere. As longtime fans of American Idol know, finalists that don’t win often become just as successful as those that do — case in point with Adam Lambert, Chris Daughtry, Jennifer Hudson and Tori Kelly. We’re sure we’ll be seeing nothing but good things from Willie down the road.
But today, it’s all about Chayce, who is well on his way to creating smash hit after smash hit in the days to come.