I like Elton John, don’t get me wrong. But listening to 11 of his songs performed by this year’s crop of Idols just might send me over the Rocket Man’s top.
Nonetheless, I’ll give it a shot. What I really would like to see tonight is a return of Steven Tyler. He has been out to lunch mostly since the show went live. Seemingly, he is has become afraid to be himself, scared to even slightly criticize contestants and otherwise a non-factor.
Thank goodness J-Lo has picked up the slack.
But, come on, Steven and kick it up a notch. Where is the old Steven, the old outrageous Steven who carried the show at the beginning of the season.
Scotty McCreary – “Country Comfort” –
He picked the right song, for sure. Shouted out to grandma who was in the audience. Perfect. You can bet that will get him some votes. Hadn’t heard the song before but it was almost as if Elton wrote it for Scottie.
Steven: “You did it again for me.”
Jennifer: “You have amazing instincts. I encourage you to always stay grounded. Never doubt yourself.”
Randy: “You have seasoned so fast on this show. You’re already there. You are so much in the zone right now. It could be on your record. Very nice.”
Naima Adedapo – “I’m Still Standing” –
Reggae style … naturally. Wouldn’t expect anything else from Naima.
She picked the song cause she related to the title. Seriously, the thought was OK, the fake Jamaican accent wasn’t. Nice try, but no. Really, no. Flattened out midway through and then got worse. She will be lucky to stick around.
Jennifer: “I believe that you’re supposed to still be standing. Not sure this song was suited for that. It was a better idea than payoff for me. I love the way you perform.”
Randy: “I agree. For me, it kind of came off corny. That’s not who you are. You weren’t quite into it. I didn’t love it for you. “
Steven: “Good for you for picking a song that fits you.”
Paul McDonald – “Rocket Man” –
There is something about this guy’s voice and his performance. He’s unique and professional. You can just tell he has “been there, done this” before.
Perfect song for him. I just hope he takes his original band members along with him after the show and after the tour.
Randy: “There were a couple of things that were a little pitchy. Your quiet voice is very infectious. But you’re holding back.”
Jennifer: “There’s a little bit more to your voice than you even know. And you haven’t gone there.”
Steven: “You always do a little something… I like the character where you sometimes hit a note and sometimes you don’t. You been watering that suit cause there are a lot more flowers on it now.”
Pia Toscano – “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down On Me” –
Pia being Pia. Another ballad.
Great. But why???? She is still singing to her strength and eventually she’ll have to perform else. Won’t she have to shake things up? For Pia’s sake, do it Pia!
Steven: “Pia you’ve done it again. That’s what you are. You nailed. it. Just about as good as it gets. Some people up here might be wrong asking you not to sing ballads anymore.”
Jennifer: “The notes take us to another worldly place. I felt you more than I have before. I feel you trying to break the barrier. It’s crazy what you do up there.”
Randy: “I don’t know what’s going on. You sung a ballad every time. You slayed them every time. The world knows you can sing.”
NOTE: Pia says she’ll perform “River Deep, Mountain High” next week.
Stefano Langone – “Tiny Dancer” –
Better than last week, but was it enough to escape elimination? I don’t know.
He did realize that he had to step it up to avoid elimination on Thursday night.
Holding hands with JLo at the end was laughable.
Jennifer: “I could really feel you taking our notes, connecting with the audience. You moved the crowd today. Amazing.”
Randy: “What I loved, you started connecting with the audience. I liked that you were moving around the stage. You were right on the money notes. Nice job.”
Steven: “There’s a real sweet thing to your voice. Tonight, you just connected with the audience. I saw it. You nailed it.”
Lauren Alaina – “Candle in the Wind” –
Kinda her song. Jimmy really seems to be the right guy as a coach for these kids, all of them. And the song does have a slight country feel to it and that is right in Lauren’s wheelhouse. One of her best efforts on the show, My original pick to win it, and now I think she is back in a big way.
Randy: “That’s one of the greatest Lauren Alaina songs ever on the Idol stage. Very hot. Very sensitive.”
Steven: “I’ve loved you since the first moment you laid eyes on me. That was just perfect. You keep singing like that and you’ll be able to afford the rest of that dress.”
Jennifer: That was amazing. You were gorgeous, you sounded gorgeous. That was it baby. That was amazing. Best of the night.”
James Durbin – “Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting” –
He refused to change anything and used the audience as a prop in a way.
Perfect song, pro performance. Don’t think the piano on fire worked all that well. Started too soon really. But it was quite a production.
Steven: “You brought the heat, didn’t you. You got a really good rock voice. Don’t wear out your welcome. Don’t be up there too long. You’ll wind up like me. When you’re up there, I forget that I’m in a competition show. It was a really full performance of a great song.”
Jennifer: “It’s like a performance.”
Randy: “You enjoy yourself. I really felt like you were having a great time. Great, great great performance.”
NOTE: Said he was worried about all the hairspray in his hair, He was afraid of having a “Pepsi moment.”
Thia Megia – “Daniel –
Thia is in the Top 11, she’s goin on Tour and she isn’t going to win this thing so why not loosen up now and try something different? Here’s one theory – she can’t!
Guarantee you she will go back home on Thursday to Mountain House.
Jennifer: “That was beautiful. It was a beautiful moment for you. This was very well suited for your voice.”
Randy: “I liked that it was a very relaxed side of you. It was still very safe. I don’t know how that’s going to help you in the voting.”
Steven: “When you find the right song, the voice appears. You sang a great Elton John song well.”
Casey Abrams – “Your Song” –
Casey gets a makeover and he probably needed it. Haircut and hair trim. Jimmy said everything was wrong with his performance last week. Way, way better this week. Toned it way down and that was the right approach. Still has a little DeWyze in him and that isn’t all bad.
Randy: “One of the greatest saves we’ve had on the show, saving you. Very tender. Well done man.”
Steven: “One of the finest moments of this show was saving you. You sing different every time and that shows a true artist.”
Jennifer: “One decision I didn’t lose one ounce of sleep over was saving you. I slept like a baby. You proved why tonight. It was very Casey.”
Jacob Lusk – “Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word” –
Mary J. Blige hung out in the room during rehearsals. Just thought you’d like to know. One word – oversung. Too much. Too much Jacob is too much … if that makes sense.
Steven: “You slayed me First half of the song blew me away.”
Jennifer: “Tricky, the arrangement of that song was amazing. Last note you don’t see that every day. You made it your own.”
Randy: “You know I love you. I liked the arrangement. The first half was brilliant. Give me one spot where you go all the way up. Say yo this is my Jacob spot.”
NOTE: Steven almost called him out on the second part of the song, but stopped just short.
Haley Reinhart – “Benny and the Jets” –
Better for her, but still not good. The bbbbbbbBenny part was juvenile at best. How this girl is ever going on Tour is beyond me. She’s cute but it begins and ends right there.
Jennifer: “That was it Haley! It all came together. It was amazing.”
Randy: “For me, best performance of the night.”
Steven: “You sing sexy.”