Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Top 12/11 Perform: Songs From The Year You Were Born

Welcome back. This episode will be a little different to begin with. If you have been keeping up with this blog or any other American Idol information site, you'll know that Jermaine Jones was disqualified from the competition. For some reason*cough*dramatic effect*cough, Ryan doesn't want to tell us who the eliminated contestant is right at the start of the show. So we'll address the Jermaine elimination when they do, later in the show. This whole performance night could be for naught, because it's very possible that they do not eliminate anyone tomorrow, due to Jermaine's elimination. Or if they bring back the "Judge's Save" they just wouldn't eliminate two people the following week. That's the only two options they have to ensure that they don't go off schedule. I don't know if we'll learn that today or tomorrow. I'll keep you posted, until then let's get to the show:

 Phillip Phillip 
Born in 1990(Hard To Handle)
We learn that after rehearsing with Jimmy Iovine and guest mentor,  he will be getting a Kidney stone operation. So tonight he is coming off of only a couple days of recuperation. Sans guitar, it was just a straight vocal, and although he yelled a little at the end, the overall performance was very solid, another really nice performance.
Randy= Sounds amazing, especially considering he just came off of surgery. Great song choice.
Jennifer= This whole thing is so natural for him. It was a great song, perfect.
Steven=Pick songs that match his character. Watch the melody, but keep it up.

Jessica Sanchez
Born in 1995(Turn The Beat Around)
After an amazing performance performing one of the most classic ballads ever last week (and amazing is an understatement), Jessica goes for this Gloria Estefan number. I love that it is completely opposite of last week. It's uptempo, it gets Jessica moving around the stage, but you can still hear all the nuances in her voice. She plays a lot on stage with the band, and with the lyrics. She owned the stage. I obviously prefer last week to this, but another great job by her.
Steven=I love your voice, but don't stray too far from ballads. The rhythm was a little shady, but I love your voice and pants.
Jennifer=Your voice lagged a little behind during the uptempo-ness of the song. Not her favorite, but good job.
Randy=One of the greatest in the competition, the song choice didn't allow her big voice to come through, and she didn't change it enough to make it her own.

Heejun Han
Born in 1989(Right Here Waiting)
Was this a very safe performance? Sure. But did he sing it pretty well? Sure. Nothing too exciting, I've seen him better. But definitely wasn't the worse thing I have heard. Not much more to say about it.
Randy=I didn't enjoy it, was pitchy all over the place. Sounded out of breath the whole time. Wrong song choice.
Jennifer=Tone was special and gorgeous. Could tell he was struggling, but could feel he was fighting through it.
Steven=Stepped too far out his circle. Wasn't a great choice, but he has a special voice anyways.

Elise Testone
Born in 1983(Let's Stay Together)
Elise's voice is so distinct and different from everyone else. I like this performance more than last week, even though last week's wasn't as bad as it people thought it was. I liked the slowed down aspect of the beginning of the song, I wish it went on a little longer. When the big band came in it wasn't bad or anything, I just liked the slowed down more. But really well done tonight.
Steven=Everyone loves your voice. So natural, and raspy. Love the voice.
Jennifer=All right on every single level. Made it her own. A Beautiful beautiful thing.
Randy=Elise is back. This is why we loved her from the beginning. The run at the end was beautiful. Like butter.

 Deandre Bracksick
Born in 1994(Endless Love)
He came in wanting to sing "Can You Feel The Love Tonight", but Jimmy and changed it. I actually would have loved hearing him sing that but this was a good choice as well. He was able to hit his runs, and those falsetto notes. He didn't hit the high notes in his regular voice like I hoped he would have. It was a little boring to me overall. Last week's performance was much more enjoyable.
Jennifer=Can sing anything, and sang it beautifully, but Jimmy steered you wrong. Didn't like the song choice.
Steven= This was not the right song for him. But he will find a better song eventually.
Randy=Wrong song choice. Paled in comparison to last week. Boring and safe at the same time, which is a bad combination.

Shannon Magrane
Born in 1995(One Sweet Day)
This is a huge song by 2 powerhouses, Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men, so Shannon singing this is tough. She obviously definitely doesn't compare anywhere close to the original, but she had a better overall performance than last week. She still hit a few bad notes, but was overall much more enjoyable and solid thorouhout.
Jennifer=Terrified about the song choice, but did a beautiful job with it. Beautiful runs and great job.
Steven= Sing best when she doesn't try as hard. Did a beautiful job with it.
Randy= Really like you, and is fearless. She has something going on. Considering the mountain she was going to climb, it was really well done.

Colton Dixon
Born in 1991(Broken Heart)
Never heard the song, nor who the band White Lion is, but Colton definitely knows this song. There's good and bad about singing a song no one knows, you can put your own spin on it, but it also can be hard for the audience to connect to. He said in his rehearsal with that he was going to make it more of a hard rock song, I wish it went even harder. I liked the performance, don't get me wrong, but I wish it went further. It's definitely Colton's song now. He sang it well, and probably helped the band sell a few thousand albums, so that was nice of him, they probably haven't sold that many since 1991.
Jennifer=Loved the beginning. Loved the relatability of him. His face looks nice when he sings.
Steven= Wrong song choice for his voice and his passion. Didn't think the song went anymore.
Randy= The song didn't matter, he performed it dope. Consistent and always in the zone.

Erika Van Pelt
Born in 1985(Heaven)
This was a very entertaining performance. She changed it up just enough to make it her own, but it still sounded like the original and let her voice really come through. I also like the fact that she didn't dress in a prom dress this week.
Steven=Too busy all over it. Stay with the melody, but still like her voice.
Jennifer=She can give us everything, but the arrangement left us wanting more. She looks great though.
Randy=Kinda liked it. 8 out of 10. Great song choice. Be careful not to do too much. If ain't broke don't fix it.
 Skylar Laine
Born in 1994(Love Sneaking Up On You)
Jimmy and tried to change Skylar from singing this song, but she stuck with her first thought. I can see their and her trepidation, the song wasn't that great for her. Definitely a weaker performance, her vocals were still solid and she has a lot of energy as always. Just another decent performance, nothing unbelievable.
Steven=Loves her heart and soul. Hasn't heard her sing bad yet.
Jennifer=Really killed that. Didn't love that the song didn't have a chorus but did her thing.
Randy=Did it well. Picked a good song and sang well.  

Joshua Ledet
Born in 1992(When A Man Loves A Woman)
Last week was a little shocking that Josh was in the Bottom 3 guys. Josh sticks to more of a ballad this week, and it's a good choice. He sang the crap out of the song. He feels the song so much that he takes off his jacket and the judges stand up. He definitely brought the song to church, like he said was going to do.
Steven= So good, no words. Most beautiful performance he ever saw.
RandyWe need a moment, and Joshua did that. That was phenomenal, incredible on every level.
Jennifer=Best thing she ever saw on American Idol. Wow

Hollie Cavanagh
Born in1993(The Power of Love)
Singing Celine Dion is always tough, but if Jessica can do Whitney Houston last week, like she did, then Hollie can try Celine Dion. This girl's voice is killer, she hits those big notes like nothing. She's little but her voice is far from it. Beautiful job by her tonight. She did it justice, I gotta admit.
Jennifer=Saved the best for last. One or two tiny bad things, but to criticize them would be silly.
Steven= A little pitchy here and there, but it was beautiful, voice comes from heaven above.
Randy= In your wheelhouse. This song blew it out the box. Another moment. Very well done.

Jermaine Jones Update:
*He was eliminated last night(Tuesday). The 2 executive producers sat down with Jermaine. In March last year he was criminally charged with giving a fake name to the police. November last year, he was criminally charged with giving a fake name. Didn't disclose the charges to the producers. There are actually 4 warrants out for him.  If contestants come clean, they can help, but he didn't tell the truth. Nonetheless, they are not allowed to have anyone that has an outstanding warrant on the program, and he has 4 of them. He is eliminated from the show. I actually love and I mean love the song that Jermaine was going to sing "Somewhere Out There". Too bad.

*Ryan announces that the person with the lowest votes will still go home tomorrow. No announcement about a Judge's Save. We just know that the Top 10 will be determined tomorrow, this also means that the person leaving will be leaving this close to making the Summer Tour.

Bottom 3?
Heejun Han
Erika Van Pelt
Deandre Brackensick

Going Home?
Heejun Han, This is a tough call. It's still very early to tell because we don't even know who was Bottom 3 last week. But this is just a shot in the dark. We'll see. I prefer Shannon, but I don't think Heejun is that long for the competition anyways.

Final Thoughts:
*If Jermaine didn't have active warrants out for him he would have stayed on the show. But the guy has 4, not even 1, 4. I mean c'mon. It's ridiculous that the producers didn't catch this months and months ago, but they did it now. If they had found this last week Jeremy probably would still be around, but thems the breaks. 
*A lot of solid "B" performances tonight. I think the theme of  "Songs From the Year You Were Born" is a tough theme. You are forced to pick only songs from that year, then Idol only gets permission for a select number of songs, so the number of choices they get is rather limited.

*I get such bad de ja vu with Jessica Sanchez and Pia Toscano from last year. One week Pia is getting a standing ovation after singing a major ballad, being dubbed the best in the competition, and then the next week she goes up tempo and gets a little criticism and Boom! she's gone. Jessica killed it last week, got some critical feedback, nothing bad, but constructive feedback this week. I am just nervous, I sure hope people learned their lesson.Of course the judge's wasted their "Judge's Save" last season on Casey Abrams a week earlier so they didn't have it at their disposal, so if something crazy happens this year they at least have a "Judge's Save". They would never let Jessica leave this early. She's still a front runner.

That's it. Please check out our poll at the end of this blog and vote and tell us who you think was the Best of the Night, and who was the worst. Until tomorrow, see ya!

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