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Katharine McPhee Is No Loser

Though only 22, the future already looks very bright for "American Idol" runner-up Katharine McPhee.

Her first single, coming out soon, is a new version of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow."

She impressed many people inside and outside show business with her sultry sound throughout the "Idol" competition, ultimately finishing in the No. 2 spot, behind Taylor Hicks.

And, on The Early Show Monday, McPhee told co-anchor Hannah Storm she's "totally" at peace with the runner-up status.

"I think I came to terms with that even before the finale," McPhee said. "It wasn't that I didn't think I could win. I just didn't think that winning was the ultimate, you know, thing out of the competition. I thought that just being in the top two was, was such an accomplishment.

"And, really, that whole finale is about the top two. You know, celebrating the other contestants that have been on the show. And so, you know, the last five minutes of the show is really about the winner. … But, really, the whole show is two hours long and I just didn't feel like a loser."

McPhee said that the entire experience was well worth it.

"It really was," she said. "I mean, definitely, you know, there's times when, you know, you're like so stressed out, you don't want to do it anymore. You're like. 'Oh, my gosh, I can't get through this anymore. But just, you forget all of the bad memories and all you remember are the great people you have to work with and the people who, you know, worked behind the scenes, and all the other contestants you become so close with."

McPhee was actually under the weather for the "Idol" finale, suffering from such a bad allergy attack that she needed cortisone shot.

But she did well enough throughout "Idol" to draw the interest of the likes of Andrea Bocelli with whom, she confirmed, she'll be doing "a couple" of songs in the near future.

McPhee diplomatically fielded Storm's question about rumors that John Mayer has asked her out, saying, "That's the question I get all the time. I met him in a recording studio. And that's pretty much all I can say. He's very nice."

How is her boyfriend in Los Angeles handling her sudden fame and popularity with the males of the world?

"Everyone's handling everything great. My family, friends, everyone's been fantastic," McPhee answered.