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Why Isn't Josh Gracin On The 'American Idol' Finale? The Contestant Was Noticeably Absent

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American Idol is great at producing a variety of talented singers and performers from a variety of musical backgrounds and genres. From fantastic pop singers like Season 1 winner Kelly Clarkson, to soul and gospel singers, like Season 3 winner Fantasia Barrino, American Idol has always been a go-to for their eclectic group of singers. One popular genres on the show has always been country — and one of my favorites. After all, it is the show that made Carrie Underwood a huge star. So, when the American Idol finale featured their former country singers in a segment on the show, I was incredibly happy to see them, but why wasn't Josh Gracin on the American Idol finale? He was, after all, one of the show's first country singers. UPDATE: Gracin has addressed his absence on his Facebook page in a statement.

If you've forgotten who Gracin is, here is a primer. Josh Gracin was a contestant on Season 2 of American Idol in 2003. Season 2 was the great season that brought us contestants like Clay Aiken, Ruben Studdard, and Kimberly Locke. It also brought us Josh Gracin, who at the time, was marine in the U.S. Marine Corps. Gracin came in 4th place during Season 2.

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LOS ANGELES - APRIL 28: American Idol finalists (L-R) Clay Aiken, Kimberley locke, Trenyce, Ruben Studdard and Joshua Gracin arrive at the premiere of 'X2: X-MEN UNITED' at the Chinese Theatre on April 28, 2003 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Gracin, however, doesn't seem to have too many positive feelings towards Idol now. Gracin told the Washington Post that he did not want to be a part of the group performance on Thursday night's finale. The group performance, who featured Idol country singers like Kellie Pickler, Scotty McCreery, and Bucky Covington, had the former contestants singing with each other and having a great time. But Gracin wanted no part in that, feeling like it insulted his post-Idol career.  

"If American Idol doesn't want to acknowledge what I've been able to do without their help...if they can't even acknowledge the success that I've had and what I've been able to do, how am I going to get Nashville to acknowledge that and get past that stigma?" Gracin told the Washington Post.

I can respect his decision — it is hard to be taken seriously as an artist when you see the American Idol label as a hinderance to your career and not help. However, I have to disagree with Gracin.  It has been 13 years since Gracin has been on the show and it is the show's last ever episode.

The least he could have done is sing a minute or two of song to show his appreciation for the show and all it did for him and his career.