Ten girls are left in the running for the ‘American Idol’ title, but only five of them (and te inevitable wild cards) will get through the unkindest cut of all, to gain their place in the live finals. Which of the girls deserves their place?
Zoanette Johnson sang Tina Turner’s “What’s Love Got to Do with It”. Well actually she murdered t, and not in a good way. Out of tune. Crazy. Just awful. I’m hoping we won’t have to listen to any more of this after tonight, even though she is quite funny when she says things like “Put the icing on the freaking peach cobbler.” Like Nicki Minaj said, “with this particular song, you gotta be on key and stuff.” Personally I thought that was meant to happen every song but maybe Nicki knows better than me. Randy had it right when he said “what a mess” while reminding Zoanette how much love and respect we have for her.
Breanna Steer sang Beyoncé’s “Flaws & All.” Her performance split the judges. First, Keith Urban went on and on about her control, poise, and knack for choosing good songs, but Nicki thought it was the wrong song choice and warned her not to get too comfortable based on Keith’s glowing review. Ouch! Mariah loved Breanna’s performance, but Randy said there was a lack of moments, Randy’s particular catchphrase this season.
Aubrey Cleland sang Fergie’s “Big Girls Don’t Cry.” Keith and Nicki both complimented her vibrato and as Randy said, she is current, but I wouldn’t go as far as Mariah who told her, “You so obviously have multi-platinum potential.” Something about this performance didn’t sound quite right to me, except for the very last line, which was amazing. All along she seemed to be running to catch up with the song.
Janelle Arthur sang Elvis Presley’s “If I Can Dream,” which is one of my favorite classic songs of all time. So it was always going to be hard for her to impress me on this one and she didn’t. At all. But the judges seemed impressed. Nicki said, “You’re a little marshmallow that I want to eat. I just want some good old country writers and producers to get a hold of you.” Mariah praised Janelle for a job well done but for me there were bum notes all over the place.
Tenna Torres sang Faith Hill’s “Lost” and I’d be happy if we lost her from this season. Nicki complimented her looks and Mariah liked Tenna’s song choice and low register. But I agree with Keith’s words of caution: “Don’t let the camera pull you off the emotion of the song.” She’s very aware of the cameras and hammed up her performance like a bad cabaret act.
Angela Miller sang Colton Dixon’s “Never Gone.” I seemed odd to hear something from a Top 10 finisher from just last season. Maybe that’s how you know you’ve made it, Colton. But at least she runs less chance of being compared to the original artist this way. This lady’s smart. “Trumpets should sound when you walk into a room,” said Nicki, clearly impressed. “Can I just get your album?” Randy calls Angie a star, and Mariah adds, “All of us, I think, are blown away by what you do.”
Amber Holcomb sang “I Believe In You and Me” and she took us to a whole other level, in my opinion. She got a stand O from the judges and I think she deserved it. Her runs got a little tiresome but in the weeks to come, hopefully she will tone those down. Keith mentioned them but also complimented her undeniably nice tone. Nicki told her, “your vocals are surpassing this competition.” Amber’s in it to win it, according to Randy, and was one of Mariah’s favorite contestants.
Kree Harrison looks pretty certain to go through to the next round after her rendition of Faith Hill’s “Stronger.” She made this look effortless. and does it beautifully Keith compared Kree to Trisha Yearwood, Carrie Underwood, Martina McBride, and Patsy Cline, adding, “The first two words in Idol are I Do, and I Do love to hear you sing.” Nicki said she’s obsessed. “Another one that’s in it to win it,” Randy says. “But you’re kind of sneaky with it!” No, I think you’ll fid she quite upfront about wanting to win but she’s natural and she definitely has the likeability factor.
Adriana Latonio failed to impress the judges with her take on ‘Stand Up For Love’ by Destiny’s Child. Keith blamed the song choice, noting that it took too long for Adriana to reach her full potential. Nicki said she needs to gain more life experience and try out again next year. Randy said it’s too safe, boring, and pageant-y. Mariah talked about Adriana’s performance from last week so she clearly hated this one. It was off-key almost the whole way through. She’s cute, but that shouldn’t be enough to keep her in with much better singers.
Candice Glover sang John Legend’s “Ordinary People” and wowed the judges. Keith raved about Candice’s unique blend of a current vibe with an old soul sound. Randy said, “That was ridiculous” and you just know he means it was amazing. “You sang notes that people don’t even understand.” Mariah simply thanked Candice for sharing her gift with the world.
And now it’s over to the good folks of America to vote to keep in their favorites. Who would you spend your phone bill on?