Some were shown playing the keyboard, guitar, or even the drums.
In 2003, at the age of 12, he sang on several episodes of the television show Star Search In one episode, he competed against Alexandréa Lushington, who was a fellow semi-finalist this season.
He suffered from vocal paralysis after that show which affected one of his vocal cords.
Unlike previous seasons, contestants whose performances not considered good enough were given a second chance in the second round.
They lined up on stage in groups of 10 and each sang a short segment of a song "a cappella." After each group had finished, the judges cut those they felt not talented enough. In the final round, all the remaining contestants performed individually a song chosen from a large list of songs provided accompanied by the band and three backup singers.
He impressed the judges with his performance of Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy" and Bryan Adams's "Heaven" during the Hollywood round.
He was never in the "bottom three" and finished as the season seven runner-up. Syesha Mercado (born January 2, 1987 in Bridgeport, Connecticut, 21 at the time of the show) is from Sarasota, Florida who auditioned in Miami with Aretha Franklin's "Think".
The first round of individual performance lasted two days.
For the first time ever, contestants had the option of either being accompanied by the band or playing an instrument themselves.
For Season 7, auditions began in San Diego, California on July 30, 2007, and continued in the following cities: Contestants were required to be between the ages of 16 and 28 on July 28, 2007, and eligible to work in the United States.