04/24/2008 at 12:00 AM EDT
So much for the luck of the Irish -- or for that matter, that lucky number seven she tattooed on her finger.
Even though she pleased the judges with her performance of Andrew Lloyd Webber'
s "Jesus Christ Superstar," Carly Smithson
was voted off American Idol
"Through the competition I've been choosing the song that showcases singing ability," she said of her season seven song choice. "From now forward, I'm going to have fun." Unfortunately, it just won't be on Idol.
It was a bit of a shocker that Carly, joined by Syesha Mercado
, was in the bottom two. Both singers heard praise from the judges when other contestants fumbled with Lloyd Webber's songs. Randy Jackson
called Jason Castro'
s version of "Memory" from Cats
a "train wreck," and Brooke White had to start over her version
of "You Must Love Me" from the musical Evita.
Meanwhile, Simon Cowell,
who said Carly's performance was one of his "favorites of the night," had more encouraging words for the departing singer, telling her, " I apologize for giving you a compliment, the kiss of death. You can leave with your head held high."
And she certainly did. "I'm very proud of myself and I'm very happy," she gushed to the judges after hearing the news. "I'm not upset that I'm going home. I'm okay. I've had the best time here. "
That leaves just five contestants in the competition: White, Mercado, Castro and the two Davids -- Archuleta
and Cook.Tell us: Did America make the right decision in voting Carly Smithson off American Idol?Plus: Watch Carly's Most Memorable Idol Songs