Caleb Lee Hutchinson made it to the finals of American Idol in Season 16 and then he lost to Maddie Poppe.
After his loss, he revealed to the world that he and Maddie had started dating. He also said he was happy about her winning.
While this might sound like something a boyfriend would say – even when he was the one losing – there was more to it than that.
In a recent interview, Caleb said he was glad he lost because of the commitments that the winners have to put into American Idol.
Caleb Lee Hutchinson happy he lost American Idol
Caleb Lee Hutchinson spoke to Insider about coming in second place on American Idol and he said he is glad that it happened.
Caleb talked about the many obligations that the winner has to take on after the season ends. They have to make an album in the next four months for the record label that American Idol chose. They have to tour with American Idol, and Idol’s label will control their careers for a time.
Caleb also said that Maddie Poppe had to take the Disney deals and roles because of her American Idol contract after the win.
“It’s not some ‘I lost, but I’m going to look good losing’ thing. I wanted her to win so bad. I was silently going, ‘Thank God it wasn’t me,’” Caleb said, saying he “wouldn’t have looked as cute with Mickey Mouse ears.”
Caleb Lee Hutchinson after American Idol
Caleb said after American Idol, it was hard to get back into his own life because he had so many people cheering for him and he had what he called a “weird transitional phase” where he focused on his image.
“Going from no one caring, to a lot of eyes on you and Twitter fingers pointed at you, it was weird,” Caleb said.
However, Caleb said he also had the culture shock of realizing that, after the show was over, people stopped caring as much because they only wanted to be on TV.
Unlike many American Idol finalists, Caleb has been mostly quiet since he appeared on the show in 2018.
While on the show, he sang his song, Johnny Cash Heart, which reached 16th on the Country Digital Song Sales chart. However, outside of that, he only has a self-titled EP to his name, which he released in 2019.
He has also released four singles over the years, with his last two coming in 2021.
Caleb and Maddie returned to American Idol this season for the reunion show to sing a duet, Islands in the Stream.
American Idol is on hiatus. The singing competition reality series will return to ABC in 2023.