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April 2, 2008
Idol Chatter: So long, Ramiele

There really can't be an "American Idol" fan out there who was shocked - shocked I tell you - that Ramiele Malubay, 20, was ousted at No. 9 on tonight's live results show.

The good news is that rocker David Cook, who was rushed to an L.A. hospital after Tuesday night's performance with heart palpitations, is OK.

"My high blood pressure just spiked. It's no big deal. I'm not going anywhere," he told host Ryan Seacrest. Dude, I know where you're coming from!

What did throw me for an "Idol" loop was country crooner Kristy Lee Cook being in the bottom three - again! Sorry dreadlocks fans, I had Jason Castro in that group, along with "Miss Popularity" Brooke White. Not because I don't think Brooke's a good singer. She's just too much of a goody two-shoes.

Even tonight, Brooke was pleading with judge Simon Cowell to apologize to the violin player who accompanied her on Tuesday night's Dolly Parton song fest. (She sang "Jolene.")

I just don't have that many good bones in my body.

Anyway, it was indeed Ramiele's turn to go, and she knew it - quivering and shaking until she got to sing at the end and, as most contestants do, she stepped up to the plate and performed admirably. As Ryan always says, "You've got a lot to be proud of."

However, I kept watching the clock during the show. The hourlong results was as jam-packed as my clothes closet:

There was the group sing-along to Dolly's "9 to 5," which last week's ousted Chikezie was going to perform; more stupid questions from viewers, though I liked the woman who asked Simon why he felt the need to apologize for being critical; an ear-splitting performance by country/rock group the Clark Brothers. (They looked like they were going to be eliminated.); a Ford music video featuring the Final 9 on a basketball court, performing to the strains of "It's Tricky"; a trip down memory lane to Nashville where we got updates on past "Idols" Bucky Covington, Phil Stacey and Bo Bice, and, of course, the judges weighing in on this week's performances. They were pretty much in agreement that it was Ramiele's turn to go.

Guest judge Dolly wowed -in a big way - with "Jesus & Gravity" off her new CD, complete with an "angelic" white costume and full gospel choir. She even quipped to Ryan: "I've got Jesus, you've got Simon. But you couldn't do it without him."

Amen.

To her credit, Kristy Lee came to the results prepared to be in the bottom three again. She walked out on stage with a silver throne "seat card."

But, she's safe for next week's "Idol Gives Back" show, which was promoted in a very moving video about two sisters in Africa who were separated in their Ethiopian city but were united because of funds raised from last year's show.

Maybe, if the producers take heart, Kristy Lee will be sitting pretty on that big sofa after next week's charity drive. The contestants likely will perform inspirational songs next Tuesday and all be safe next Wednesday. (Two will get the boot on April 16.)

If you think this contest isn't heating up for a dandy stretch run, you've been listening to too much of the "Clark Brothers."

And all that hugging and tears? It won't last!

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