What Makes 'American Idol' Finalist Zachariah Smith a Fan Favorite?


May 13 2023, Published 2:44 p.m. ET

Fact: American Idol finalist Zachariah Smith instantly became a fan favorite on Season 21 of the long-running competition reality series, and is among the top five finalists to take the stage in hopes of landing a recording contract, and $250,000 cash prize.

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One interesting detail that immediately stuck out to fans about the Armory, Miss. native is his relationship with 32-year-old mother-of-three Crysta Wilkerson – who filed for divorce from her ex-husband in April 2022, and married Zachariah while he was 19 years old, and just a few months after finalizing her separation.

Read on for more details about him.

‘American Idol’ finalist Zachariah Smith and his wife, Crysta Wilkerson, have quite an interesting history.

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Zachariah is among the top 5 American Idol finalists for Season 21 – which also includes the likes of Iam Tongi, Wé Ani, Megan Danielle, and Colin Stough.

Crysta was introduced as his wife at his audition in November and it was revealed she worked as the manager at the restaurant the young star was working in, Bill’s Hamburgers – which happened to be her family’s business.

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Judge Luke Bryan famously told the contestant after a recent performance to, “Go back to Amory, get your damn apron, get a little lighter fluid, burn the apron.”

Source: YouTube
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Per the U.S. Sun, the duo wed around September 2022 and the outlet also reports Crysta's children are all under the age of 10. It is unclear when exactly Zachariah and Crysta became romantically involved, however her divorce documents stated she and her former spouse faced "irreconcilable differences" leading up to their split.

Zachariah has spent most of his life pursuing his passion for music.

As for Zachariah's music career, the Idol fan favorite singing at age six, and two years later, learned how to play the guitar, according to World Wide Tune.

On top of his restaurant job, the stepfather performed both cover songs and his original work in local spots in his area before making it big on TV.

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It's been a long-time dream for the former burger flipper to audition for the ABC series.

So far, Zachariah has wowed both the judges, Katy Perry, Lionel Richie, and Luke, and audiences alike with his performances of Alanis Morissette's "Ironic", Electric Light Orchestra's "Don't Bring Me Down", and John Mellencamp's "Hurts So Good".

Having lost his father at a young age, Zachariah credits his motivation to his family.

Source: Instagram.
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"I would never be where I am today, pursuing my dreams, without my family!" he previously shared on Instagram. "My mom has always been my rock through life always supporting my love for music. Lord knows it was not an easy road. She raised three boys by herself after my dad passed away when I was eight. She is truly my biggest blessing."

American Idol airs on Sunday nights at 8 p.m. EST and Monday nights at 9 p.m. EST on ABC.

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