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American Idol Backstage: Hear From the Top 13! Plus, Randy Jackson Thinks Who Tried Too Hard?

American Idol, Top 13 Michael Becker / FOX

America, you've finally got your top 13 on American Idol!

After grueling auditions and nail-biting eliminations, 13 Idols are left to battle for the title of the next American Idol. We chatted with all the contestants, plus judges Randy Jackson and Steven Tyler revealed who they thought sealed their own fate…

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"I think this was our most emotional, toughest of these shows because there were so many talented kids we loved on the road," Jackson tells us. "And to see America get it right and pick those 10 but to leave a bunch of others on the side, we were like, 'Oh my god, we got to figure out what to do here.' And I think we got it right."

Of course the judges were responsible for saving three contestants in the Wild Card round, and while they certainly wanted the kids to sing for their lives, one contestant showed them too much desperation.

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"In some cases they dug too deep," Tyler noted. Jackson nodded his head and added: "I think Reed (Grimm) kind of blew himself out. But I gotta tell you, Erika Van Pelt, I could feel it in her soul how bad she wanted it."

Van Pelt definitely gave it all she got, because she even choked up on camera while she talked to us! "[Singing] drew everything out of me," she says. "Obviously people saw I had pretty raw emotions on that stage."

To get to know the top 13 a little bit better, plus how the judges feel about next week, check out all our interviews below!

—Reporting by Will Marfuggi

What do you guys make of the top 13? Any frontrunners?

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