Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Top 4 Perform

Welcome back. In only 2 short weeks the Season 10 American Idol winner will be crowned. We are down to the Final 4, Haley, Scotty, James and Lauren. We know that only 3 will be able to visit their hometowns next week, and one will go home, we just don't know who yet. Although it has seemed that Scotty has been the favorite week after week, it really now comes down to who out performs who, because it's possible that even though Scotty and James haven't been in Bottom 3 once, that if they don't outperform the ladies that they could go.

Lady Gaga will help mentor the contestants tonight with Jimmy Iovine. They will be singing songs that inspire them and then sing songs from famed songwriters Leiber and Stoller. This seems like it would be up Scotty's alley, and maybe not James, but how the contestants interpret and change up the songs could make all the difference in the world. Creativity is key at this point. Should be good, so let's get to it:

How Did The Contestants Do?

James (Inspirational Song-Don't Stop Believin'): We don't get a peek into the mentor session this week for the inspirational song. This is the ultimate karaoke song, so it's tough to put your own spin on it without making it seem like the original. James sings those high notes as good as anyone and he was pretty controlled. It wasn't ultra amazing or creative, he just sang the song well, at this point in the competition you would hope that the contestants can sing a song pretty well and he did. Grade=B
Steven: Thought he picked a perfect song.
Jennifer: Thinks he pulled off hitting those high notes, and calls it a great performance.
Randy: Before giving James any credit Randy gives credit to his former band Journey and bandmates. Then remembering what his job it he tells James that he thinks he reached the highest level of difficulty with ease.
Do The Judges Agree With Me?: Kinda. They definitely enjoyed it more than I did. I didn't think it was anything special, but it was a solid performance nonetheless.

Haley(Inspirational Song-Earth Song): This is one of my favorite songs ever, it is such an epic song. Haley starts off pretty rocky, kinda pitchy in spots and flat in others. But when the chorus and band kicks in she definitely starts to hit her stride a bit more. She even gets a choir to help her out in the chorus. She really picks it up and makes you almost forget about the beginning. Definitely a step or two below last week's crazy amazing performance, but still really really well done. Grade=B
Jennifer: Can feel all the feelings that Haley is feeling. Doesn't know if she chose the right song and doesn't think it stacked up against James' performance.
Randy: Confused him about who Haley is as a performer. Doesn't think that she hit the top of her range and the song needed her to deliver and she didn't. He continues to go on and on about why he didn't like it.
Steven: Thinks that Jennifer and Randy are both wrong. Thinks she nailed it with feeling and pushed it over the top.
Do The Judges Agree With Me?: Steven does. Randy and Jennifer just don't think that was a good song choice at all. Luckily(and it's the first time I've said it all season) Steven was able to calm everyone down and tell Haley she nailed it. Haley is pissed that they didn't like it, even Jennifer mentions that Randy went on too long with his comments. Not a great start for Haley in regards to judges comments.

Scotty(Inspirational Song-Where Were You When The World Stop Turning): Obviously this song was written and performed originally by Alan Jackson and was about 9/11. It's tough to say anything wrong about the song given the content and feeling behind it. The performance was solid. It's the same old same old with Scotty. He didn't do too much with it and make it creative, but it's tough to do with the lyrics and content of the song. Grade=B+
Randy: Thought it was the perfect song choice for Scotty. Thinks singing a simple song with simple lyrics was perfect. Thinks Scotty is ready to be a star.
Steven: Loves Scotty's passion and thought it was all beautiful.
Jennifer: Is in love with Scotty. Loves what he stands for, and what he brings to his music and loves that he knows himself and how to perform to the audience. Loves that she is able to witness such greatness.
Do The Judges Agree With Me?: Sure. Though I am sure if they had their wish Scotty would be crowned Idol winner already and they can go on to other things. They are so in love with this kid, that it makes it hard for the other contestants to stack up against him. The comments that he got were as good as you can get.

Lauren(Inspirational Song=Do It Anyway): After a very emotional results show, Lauren has got to pick it up. She was easily the favorite contestant going into this competition but has fallen under expectations greatly in recent weeks. Singing a Martina McBride song is a wise choice. You could tell that Lauren wanted to push her vocals this week, she didn't hold back on the high notes and hit them really well. When she goes all out she really does a beautiful job. I don't think it was her moment, but much better than last week. Grade=B
Steven: Thought it was the most beautiful thing. She delivers the song like a "blue plate special". Thinks she is the whole package.
Jennifer: Is so proud of her for growing and pushing her to be at the final. Was a great great vocal performance.
Randy: Thinks that Lauren is in it to win it. Thinks Lauren is back(I don't remember her really going anywhere) Didn't think there was thing wrong with the performance.
Do The Judges Agree With Me?: Sorta. They liked it a bit more than I did. I don't understand Randy's comment that Lauren is back. I honestly think he has said that to her 10 times this season.

After Round 1, Ryan asks Jennifer who she thinks won the first Round, she doesn't answer, but is able to tell Haley that it wasn't a good song choice. Ryan asks Randy who needs to step it up, and for some reason Randy answers Jennifer's question and says that first round goes to a tie between Lauren, Scotty and James. Wow! Then he says that Haley needs to step it up, but that they believe in her. Right Randy, I'm sure you do.

I didn't realize it was dump on Haley day. Honestly was any of that necessary? We know Haley didn't do her best, but she wasn't horrible. The way that Randy was speaking it made it seem like Haley was that contestant from last year who sang with his pants on the ground. Haley is much more than that, and didn't really deserve to get ganged up on again from Randy. One time was more than plenty.

Haley(Leiber/Stoller Song=I Who Have Nothing): With the help of Lady Gaga as mentor Haley goes for this very well known Idol song. If everyone can recall this was by far Season 6 winner Jordin Sparks best song and performance, and helped her win the crown. So it's chancy. Lady Gaga calls her amazing and wants Haley to add to the drama of the song and make the song more emotional to connect to the audience. I love how different Haley made the song from the Jordin Sparks' version. She adds so much to the performance and just kills the song. Last week was crazy amazing, but tonight was just unbelievable. The judges again give Haley another very deserved standing ovation. Grade=A
Jennifer: Says they will never take it easy on Haley because this is what she is capable of. Thinks it was amazing, one of the best performances of the year.
Randy: Thinks that this was Haley's moment. Thinks that Haley is in it to win it. One of her best vocals ever.
Steven: Classic moment, with classic Haley. Thinks she Reinharted herself into the middle of next. Don't know what that means, but it was really funny.
Do The Judges Agree With Me?: Definitely. This was one of, if not the best performance of the year. Haley has given herself a shot to make Top 3 with this performance.

Scotty(Leiber/Stoller Song=Young Blood): Lady Gaga loves the humor of his voice and performance. Gaga wants Scotty to make love to the microphone. Scotty definitely has a good time with his performance and playing with the audience. Not sure if this was the best song choice. It didn't really do too much with or for his voice. I think his uptempo performance last week with "Gone" was a whole lot better. Grade=B
Randy: Loved that he had fun with the song. Thinks we saw both sides of a Scotty concert.
Steven: Thought it was good, he liked it overall but really loved the humor of the song.
Jennifer: Thinks he is really hitting his stride, enjoyed that it showed another side to him, but wants him to keep switching it up if he sticks around next week.
Do The Judges Agree With Me?: Not really. I really disliked the song choice, not one of my favorites for Scotty at all. I haven't looked at the Leiber and Stoller song book, but there has to have been another, better song for Scotty to sing.

Lauren(Leiber/Stoller Song=Trouble): Lauren is concerned over one of the lyrics in the song being the word "Evil". She doesn't want the public to think she is evil. Lauren doesn't really give the audience a lot of credit for being able to disassociate the song to the person. Gaga wants Lauren to realize that nobody thinks she is evil and wants her to get past her insecurities. You could see a huge difference from Lauren last week and the past few weeks to her performances tonight. She really pushes herself and makes her voice go places that it really hasn't in a really long time. She makes her voice go on these really funky runs and she has so much fun with her performance. Grade=A-
Steven: Thinks it was well done and just loves her.
Jennifer: Saw a lot of maturity and an ability to attack the song. Loved the performance and thought vocally it was great.
Randy: Loved this fun side of her and her really changing it up and getting into the song.
Do The Judges Agree With Me?: Yep. Lauren definitely showed a different side of herself and nailed it. I definetly haven't seen this side of Lauren in a long time, hope she continues upping it every time out there.

James(Leiber/Stoller Song-Love Potion #9): Gaga was not happy at how subdued James was during his rehearsal. She gets up out of her chair to help James move his body some more. James definitely adds his own rock and metal genre to this song. Definitely never heard this song sung this way before. The performance and vocals were kind of average for me, but the last note and the way that he carried it out and made the audience get really low and then he went crazy for the last note was really well done. Grade=B+
Jennifer: Proves he can sing anything and is able to take any song and put his own spin on it.
Randy: Thinks he is peaking at the right moment, and thinks it was hot.
Steven: Thinks his voice is incredible and calls it a beautiful thing.
Do The Judges Agree With Me?: Pretty much. Don't really get the fact that he got the best spot of the night, but he did well in it.

How Was The Show/Judges?:

*I don't understand the shakeup of the order of performances. Usually if you go first in the first round you go first in the second round. James actually went from singing first on the show to singing last. I don't get that. It's a bit unfair to Lauren, who thought she was getting the best slot of the night, the last spot. Haley had to go from getting harsh criticisms to immediately singing. And James gets the best spot of the night. Just don't understand the fairness of all that. Plus if people aren't paying attention it could mess up the voting a bit.

*Randy going on and on over Haley's first performance being bad, as well as asking the judges who won the first round and who needs to step it up was very strange and a bit unfair.

*Odd that we didn't see the mentoring session between Jimmy Iovine and the contestants for their first performances. They have sung 2 songs before in the same allotted time, so it has nothing to do with time restraints. I wish that Lady Gaga mentored them on both performances. If they are singing 2 songs why not have her help out with both. She's there, utilize her.

Bottom 2 Predictions/Who's Going Home:
This is one of my hardest predictions of the entire season.

Bottom 2?=Haley & Lauren. Until those that are voting prove to me that they are not voting for boys, I can't see these 2 girls escaping the Bottom 2. Especially since Lauren was in Bottom 2 last week, Haley has been there plenty of times, and neither James or Scotty have been in Bottom 3 or 2.

Going Home?= Haley.  I want to be wrong, I feel she had one of, if not the best performances of the entire year tonight, but she got hammered by Randy and Jennifer for that first performance, and with the other 3 contestants not getting really any negative feedback, I don't know if she can escape going home. Again, I hope I am wrong, but don't know if I am.

Come back tomorrow to learn which contestant falls just short of the Top 3. It was a very interesting night. Tomorrow's results show should be just as interesting. See you soon.

1 comment:

  1. I am so hoping Lauren goes home. There's just something about her that I don't care for. I still think she's immature and would be swallowed up if she wins. Having said that, I think she was better this week than last week. Scotty is really getting on my nerves. I think Haley was awesome this week, but I'm rooting for James to win it all. He has been consistently good every week, and he's made no bones that he REALLY wants it. Bottom 2 Haley and Lauren, and as much as I want Lauren to go, I think it will be Haley.