South Carolina singer Caleb Kennedy leaving “American Idol” after a controversial video of him emerged has apparently not phased his fans.
His EP reached No.2 in the iTunes Country Chart and No.7 among All Genres this week. Her mother, Anita Guy, posted the news on her Facebook page on Tuesday, and the Spartanburg Herald-Journal was the first to report it.
Kennedy returned home to Roebuck in Spartanburg County a week ago, with two weeks left in the “Idol” competition. He had reached the top 5 and was aiming for the top 3.
But a 2-second Snapchat video from years ago appeared online, showing Kennedy sitting next to someone in what looked like a Ku Klux Klan robe. It was distributed to Dorman High, where he is a sophomore, and passed on to Guy. She said she also sent it to her son, and they told the producers of “Idol” about it.
The next day Kennedy was going home.
Guy said the video was taken when his son was 12 and the person in the costume was imitating a character from a movie she had watched.
Kennedy said on Instagram: “It showed actions that weren’t meant to be taken in this way. I was younger and didn’t think about stocks, but that’s no excuse.
He said he takes time away from social media “to get better.”
He said he knew he had hurt and disappointed many people and lost their respect.
“I’m so sorry! I pray that one day I can regain your trust in who I am and have your respect!” He said.
On Sunday’s show, host Ryan Seacrest said only that Kennedy is not continuing the competition.
People magazine reported that judges Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie commented on Kennedy’s exit following the Sunday show.
“First and foremost, as judges we love these kids,” Bryan told People magazine. “We get emotionally involved in these children. We want the best for Caleb. ”
He said he couldn’t speak for ABC or for Kennedy’s decision to leave.
“It’s our job as judges to come forward and do our best and comment on the kids in front of us,” he told the magazine.
He said the week had been “very, very difficult and overwhelming.”
Richie told People: “A lot of times we think about it and we grow up and we make mistakes and we look at our life behind us a few times and we say, ‘God, what was I thinking when I did that? ? ‘ It was one of those situations where we kind of gave her a big hug from the three of us.
“He’s definitely talented. Problem is, it’s one of those unfortunate decisions that had to be made and we’re moving on. But it will remain in his memories during his lifetime and he will know what it is.