Scotty tries to bring 'Idol' title to Garner

Posted May 24, 2011 4:51 p.m. EDT
Updated May 24, 2011 6:10 p.m. EDT

— Garner teen Scotty McCreery will take the stage on Tuesday night vying for the title of "American Idol." It has been a long road for the 17-year-old baseball player-turned-reality star, but he is trying to stay humble.

"To all the people back home, I'm going to give it my best. I'm going to try to bring it back home to Garner. I'm doing all this for them. They are the ones (who) got me here," McCreery said Monday alongside fellow finalist Lauren Alaina.

McCreery and Alaina, a 16-year-old cheerleader from Rossville, Ga., have become very close during the series and performed several duets together.

"We tried out to win the show, and we're so close now. Either way, I feel like I'm going to win. If I lost to Scotty, I'd still be winning because he is the bomb," Alaina said.

McCreery feels the same way, responding to her, "You're too nice. You're the bomb too."

The two have a lot in common. They are both young, country singers from small towns. With one of the biggest nights of their young lives ahead of them, they are helping calm each other's nerves.

"It's tough for us because we're both from small towns from nowhere around L.A. We just try to stay true to ourselves, stay in our boots – that's what I like to tell myself – and stay grounded," McCreery said.

Although McCreery played for 30,000 fans at a homecoming celebration in Garner on May 14, he said the 8,000 people in the Nokia Theater on Tuesday night are much more intimidating.

"They have pictures all around here of the past people (who) have performed on stage, like David Cook in the finale, and it's weird to think, wow, that's me and Lauren right now," McCreery said.

McCreery said he is still undecided if he will cut his hair before Wednesday night's finale. Last week, "American Idol" judge Jennifer Lopez requested he buzz cut his hair to the same length it was when he originally tried out for the show.

"Every time I look in the mirror, I'm saying, 'Should I? Should I not?' I don't know. I used to have short hair. Me and boys back in Garner would say, 'Short hair don't care,'" McCreery said. "I'm torn. If J-Lo cuts it, I might."

Alaina voiced her opposition to the cut with a resounding "No."

A viewing party for Tuesday night's episode of "American Idol" is being held at Garner Magnet High School, 2101 Spring Drive. Doors open at 7 p.m.

On Wednesday, a viewing party will be held at the RBC Center. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Admission to the event is free. Parking is $10.