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And the winner of ‘American Idol’ is ...

Chayce Beckham was pushed by his family to audition after a ‘roller coaster’ of a year where he struggled with alcoholism and self-worth

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Chayce Beckham is pictured during the 2021 season finale of “American Idol,” where he was crowned the winner.

On Sunday night, Chayce Beckham was declared the winner of “American Idol.”


American Idol” has crowned a new winner.

Who won ‘American Idol’ 2021?

On Sunday night, after a three-hour season finale, “American Idol” announced that Chayce Beckham is the newest champion of the singing competition.

“American Idol” judge Katy Perry predicted from the start that Beckham would go far in the competition, going as far as to call the 24-year-old singer from Apple Valley, California, a top five contestant during his audition.

Beckham — who has drawn comparison to Bruce Springsteen during his time on “Idol” — was working as a heavy machinery operator when he auditioned for the competition. He said he was pushed by his family to audition after a “roller coaster” of a year where he struggled with alcoholism and self-worth.

“Whenever everything else was bad, music was always there, and that would just kind of keep me grounded at all times. For me, it’s everything.” the singer said during his audition. “I’m grateful for all the negatives, all the positives, everything that’s happened in my life that’s added up to this. So I’m going to take this shot, and I don’t think I’ll miss.”

What did Chayce Beckham perform during the ‘American Idol’ 2021 finale?

After being crowned the winner — with 21-year-old singer Willie Spence as runner-up — Beckham performed his winner’s single, “23,” which chronicles his struggles with alcohol abuse and his path to sobriety, the Deseret News reported.

The song was also the best performing single from the top three finalists, reaching the No. 1 spot on the iTunes country chart, according to Country Now.

During Sunday night’s finale, Beckham also performed the Beatles classic “Blackbird” — the judges’ pick for him — Chris Stapleton’s “Fire Away,” and Ed Sheeran’s “Afterglow,” which Beckham had previously performed during the competition.

“Congratulations — twice,” “Idol” judge Lionel Richie said after Beckham performed “Afterglow.” “One for surviving this amazing class of 2021, and secondly, welcome to your career. You’ve got an amazing future, my friend.”

Watch Beckham’s performances from Sunday night below: