Bucky Covington, <EM>American Idol</EM> Bucky Covington, American Idol

Despite some rockin' country (or is it countrified rock?) performances, North Carolinian Bucky Covington bottomed out last week on Fox's American Idol (Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 9 pm/ET) despite serving up a solid spin on Queen's "Fat Bottomed Girls." "I'd rather leave on a high note than a low note," Bucky shared the day after his swan song. "If I'm not going to win it, eighth is just as good as fourth to me, do you know what I mean?"

One of the many ladies surely sad to see Bucky say goodbye is none other than Paula Abdul, who was often spied boogying and bopping behind the judges' table during his performances. "Anytime you can make somebody dance, it's going to make you feel good. If you can make Paula dance, all the better," smiles Bucky. "It's a very comforting feeling, because you know Simon [Cowell] isn't going to get up and cut a rug."

Idol's newest castoff actually had a lot to say about what the show's famously nasty judge is and isn't doing. Speaking to the haughty if not helpful critiques coming from Cowell this season, Bucky shares, "A lot of people are starting to say, 'Simon just likes to make money, so he says whatever he says to make a good show,' which he does" but at the cost of actually proffering anything useful to the wannabes. "It seems like he used to give advice, but now he doesn't so much give advice as try to put you down and make the show [about] 'I can't believe you said that!' Like, he told Paris [her performance was] 'weird.' What is that supposed to mean?

"That tells her nothing. 'You did not help her none with your comment,'" Bucky tells Cowell. "'You should have just kept your mouth shut.' I don't mean to sound rude about it, but you can help [the contestants] and then you can just sell the show. He does a good job of selling the show."

In a conference call with reporters, Bucky also had this to say about...

... whom he will miss most from the competition:
"Buddy-wise, definitely Elliott Yamin. That was my best buddy through this thing, so I'm going to miss him."

... not getting to Kid around:
"I actually entered some [songs from Kid Rock, his idol, to sing on the show], but [the rights] didn't clear. That's cool, though."

... the theme that threw him the most:
"The main one actually was Stevie Wonder [week], but I came across 'Superstition' and was like, 'Hey, we can knock this out.' That's going to be on the [American Idol Season 5] compilation album."

... his brief (and yes, disturbing) bout of "Jessica Simpson hair":
"It was like all or nothing. I needed a happy medium and I couldn't get [that from Idol's hairstylists], so I went back and tried doing it myself. I actually wear cowboy hats all the time back home, but on the TV show, they always want to see your eyes."

... telling him apart from his twin brother, Rocky:
"I have more earrings."

... not being twin-piqued:
"Rocky did try out for Idol, but he got cut in the first round. He wanted us to try out together, but I didn't want to come into this thing with a gimmick."

... his Idol idols:
"Constantine [Maroulis] is good, but mainly Bo [Bice] opened up a lot of doors for a lot of people like me and Chris Daughtry, and Taylor Hicks, even. I thank both of them very much for that."

Why do so many people risk making fools of themselves on shows like American Idol? Find out.