Carly Smithson is an Irish singer who tried out for American Idol - and released an album - under the name of Carly Hennessy. She's returned for the seventh season, following a disastrous showing by said album and has advanced to Hollywood under a cloud of controversy.

However, as she made her way through the finals, Smithson forced critics to focus more on her personality and her talent than her background. In the end, Carly finished sixth on the season, voted out in a controversial decision by fans.