Michael Johns was widely considered to be the most shocking early elimination in the last season of American Idol.

Fans adored him, and even cold-hearted Simon Cowell said he’d miss the hunky Australian rocker after his untimely departure.

But now he’s back, and it sounds like his premature eviction hasn’t done him too much harm after all.

In fact, OK! has learned that his first post-Idol album, Hold Back My Heart, is set for release on Downtown records in June.

“It’s a rock and soul record,” he told us at a private Seal concert at the W Hotel in Westwood March 24. 


"We stripped it down so that it sounds like Otis Redding," the Australian said.

"I was bummed at the time when I got kicked off Idol, but now I’m just so happy," he said.  "My wife and I are doing well [now that Idol is over]."

Expect Johns to take his band on the road this summer for at least a few promotional dates. First off, the singer will appear this weekend at the Fight Night event in Phoenix, Arizona alongside featuring Jon Bon Jovi, Muhammad Ali, Michael Phelps and Reba McEntire. Tickets start at $1500 for the charity event.

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