Caleb Kennedy departed from American Idol due to a controversial video that surfaced online.
On Wednesday, May 12, a video surfaced on social media which allegedly shows Kennedy sitting on a couch next to someone wearing racist attire. The very brief clip first appeared on Snapchat of Kennedy sitting with someone wearing a white KKK hood with a caption that reads, “bow, oh my.”
The fan-favorite 16-year-old Idol contestant addressed the situation in a lengthy message to fans on the reason for his departure from the popular singing competition show.
“Hey y’all, this is gonna be a bit of a surprise, but I am no longer gonna be on American Idol,” Kennedy explained. “There was a video that surfaced on the internet and it displayed actions that were not meant to be taken in that way. I was younger and did not think about the actions, but that’s not an excuse.”
Kennedy then apologized to his supporters and everyone who has voted for him during his Idol journey.
“I wanna say sorry to all my fans and everyone who I have let down,” Kennedy added. “I’ll be taking a little time off social media to better myself, but saying that, I know this has hurt and disappointed a lot of people and made people lose respect for me. I’m so sorry! I pray that I can one day regain your trust in who I am and have your respect! Thank you for supporting me.”
An update from me, about American Idol. pic.twitter.com/uuHc2sSiM4
— Caleb Kennedy (@calebkennedy) May 12, 2021
Caleb Kennedy landed a slot in the Top 5 of the show earlier this week. During the season, he performed songs such as “Midnight Train to Memphis” by Chris Stapleton, “On the Road, Again” by Willie Nelson and even sang a duet with country superstar Jason Aldean.
A source close to American Idol told Music Mayhem that contestant Caleb Kennedy will no longer be moving forward in the competition and Sunday’s episode will feature the Top 4 with one contestant elimination.
No official statement has been released by American Idol as of yet.