|The Top 12 girls of 'American Idol 10'|
The entire Top 24 is on the stage for the opening. "Who do you love," Ryan asks. Scary voiceover man introduces the judges and Ryan Seacrest. People are jumping up and down in the audience holding up a myriad of signs. This audience is seriously pumped.
The guys are chillin' in their seats on the side of the stage. Ryan asks JLo what is so special about this group of girls. She says they're supremely talented inside, and beautiful inside and out. Randy says this is the final chance for America to pick the Top 10. We should be asking ourselves, "Is this the American Idol?"
Steven gets lots of screams from the audience. He says he sensed a little nervousness, but they have to sing for their lives today... like there's no tomorrow. The ladies co,e out on the stage
Ta-Tynisa Wilson – “Only Girl (In The World)” (Rihanna)
Taty wearingi what looks to be a ballerina outfit and white booties. She's off both the key and the melody, and isn't singing with the music. Awful, just awful. No other way to say it.
Steven says the song sang her and she sang beautifully. JLo says she started off a little bit shaky, but brought it all the way home. Really? Randy totally differs. "It was just okay," he says. "It kind of paled in comparison to Rihanna's version. Randy = Simon this year. JLo says, "Being a performer is about moving the crowd and she moved the crowd." Randy says he was part of the crowd and wasn't moved. So there.
Naima Adedapo – “Summertime”
Fantasia killed this one during Season 3 and that's a tough act to follow. I'm sure Randy won't miss a chance to remind us once again that he's been here all ten seasons! Naima is wearing a yellow dress she designed herself. She looks beautiful. Her interpretation is very jazzy, almost a throwback. She doesn't miss a trick. It's outstanding. Girl's a pro.
JLo says, "You're like an exotic flower in a rose garden." Randy thinks it was loungey and brings up the Fantasia reference. He does like that she acted it out and enjoyed the second half more than the first. Steven says it was like early Ella Fitzgerald. "I love you a lot and I liked it a lot tonight."
Kendra Chantelle – “Impossible” (Christina Aguilera)
Kendra has a bit too much of the nasally thing going on. She does manage to stay in tune and hits the high notes rather well. But it's a bit too generic. Not bad, but not real memorable. By the end of the night, I'll have forgotten this one.
Randy says he was worried when he saw that she picked this song. He loved the vibrato, though, cuz it makes him feel warm and connected. Steven says she has the whole package. JLo loves that Kendra has heart, but feels there's more of her. "We're just scratching the surface with you... amazing."
Rachel Zevita – “Criminal” (Fiona Apple)
Rachel starts out wearing a black cape and sheds it. She prances off the stage and sings on the podium behind the judges. She's making a lot of very strange faces too. Thing is, she has an interesting voice and really pulls it off. I like this girl. A little old-school, but I think that's her thang.
Steven says he loved her swagger and strut, but it was a little "Broadway" for him. JLo wonders how Rachel wants America to see her as an artist. She wishes Rachel had picked something different to sing. Randy says it wasn't good and didn't work. She starts talking back and makes a rather nasty face. Girl's pure love!!!
Karen Rodriguez – “Hero” (Mariah Carey)
The sole surviving MySpace auditioner mixes up English and Spanish. We get it Karen. Her singing is fine, but it's a tiny bit cabaret. The song is a bit too easy for her and doesn't really challenge her vocally, but I suppose it's a good idea to play it a bit safe on a night that is so important.. She's a cutie, though, and by the end of the performance, she sold me. Very nice. Best so far.
JLo says, "Wow, wow, wow." She has goosebumps. She loves that Karen changed from English to Spanish and showed who she is. Randy says she made it her own and that the Spanish was better than English. Steven says she's a one of a kind singer and she should get together with Jacob Lusk and sing it together. I love Jacob.
Lauren Turner - “Seven Day Fool” (Etta James/Jully Black)
As Lauren started singing, the video feed went out, so I can't comment on what she's doing. But her singing isn't half bad. She really digs into it and sings with conviction. She's in tune too!
Randy says, "That's how you do it, man." He thinks she could do something new. "Very nice." Steven says it was spectacular. "It was a perfect, full complete sentence." JLo thinks she was holding back a little and wishes Lauren had gotten into the face of the camera.
So far, I think the girls are killing the guys!
The Seroquel commercial is almost entirely about the hideous side effects. Yikes.
Ashton Jones – “Love Over Me” (Monica)
Ashton's a bit shrill, but she has a real nice tone to her voice. She is very polished, though. I'm not crazy about this song choice, but her confidence is pretty amazing. She commands the stage. Seriously,
Steven says she has the confidence of a queen and sings sweet. "We found one." JLo thinks she has all the makings of a diva. Ashton says she gets it from Jennifer. Randy doesn't love the song and thinks she can take on more challenges. He likes her and wants her to think Diana Ross.
Julie Zorrilla – “Breakaway” (Kelly Clarkson)
Dangerous stuff singing Kelly Clarkson. This is actually very karaoke. She does change it up, but it doesn't really work at all. She misses notes and oversings like mad. And she knows it.
JLo says this wasn't the best Julie's done. She says she didn't feel it all the way and didn't really connect to the lyrics. Randy says Kelly sang that song, but Julie didn't bring anything different or new to it. Kelly sang it better, he says. He says she needs to think what will make her special and stand out. Steven says it wasn't the right song and she should have taken it up a couple of keys. I don't think she needs to worry though.
Haley Reinhart – “Fallin” (Alicia Keyes)
This is another one of those songs no one should ever sing on this show. She sounds like a little girl trying to imitate Alicia Keys. On second thought - her voice is like Minnie Ripperton's. She changes it up enough so that it's a little different. She didn't have to get so gutteral, but I will say it's the best I've ever heard anyone sing this.
Randy doesn't think the song did anything for Haley. He calls it karaoke and says he didn't get it. Steven says he heard just the right amount of style and sexy. "I really liked it a lot." JLo says Haley showed a lot of different colors in her voice. She thinks Haley needs to get a little bit out of her head. JLo's got this down.
Thia Megia – “Out Here On My Own” (Irene Cara)
Thia starts out a cappela. Very brave. She has a rich voice (OMG she's only 15) and amazing tone. Pitch perfect. Of all the girls, she actually is the most in tune. Too bad the song is so dull.
Steven says, "Sometimes a person's pitch can be so perfect, it doesn't matter what you sing." JLo agrees with Steven. She calls it a moment and special. Randy says the mark of a great singer is the quality of the tone of the singer. He compares her voice with Michael Jackson. "This is what hot singing is about."
Lauren Alaina – “Turn on the Radio” (Reba McEntire)
Of course Lauren is singing a country song. I'm betting visions of Carrie Underwood are dancing in her head. She has a nice voice, but again, I'm thinking this might not have been the best song choice. She's good, though, I'm not going to say she isn't.
JLo says, "My little Lauren... you don't even have to try... the voice is so effortless." Randy says Lauren has a natural gift and doesn't know how good she is. She reminds him of a combination of Kelly and Carrie. Steven says she shouldn't sing into the stratosphere everytime. "They haven't seen the best of you yet." Boy, they really want her to win, don't they. Lauren calls Ryan "Peaches" cuz he's from Georgia too.
Pia Toscano – “I’ll Stand By You” (The Pretenders)
This song usually makes me tear up. Carrie did it beautifully. Pia does it well and probably connects to the lyrics better than anyone else tonight. As she gets into it, she relaxes and really nails it. Best of the night, for sure. She gets a standing ovation from the audience. The girls are in tears. Pia's mother is in tears, and I feel a teeny tiny tear forming as well.
Randy says this is the first standing "O." He says she just put herself in the top. "That was unbelievable." Steven says, "After Monday and Tuesday, even a week says WTF." Not sure what that means, but he finishes up telling her, "That was gorgeous, congrats." JLo says she knew Pia was a standout, but that she was saving this for when it really counts.
Ryan says now we have a problem picking your favorite.
Best and worst
My Top 5 - Pia, Haley, Ashton, Thia, and Karen. Middle of the pack - Naima, Lauren Alaina, Lauren Turner, and Julie. Bottom of the leader board - Rachel, Ta-Tynisa, and Kendra. I think Julie will trump Karen though and Lauren Alaina will bump Ashton. Too bad.
Results Thursday featuring JLo's new video. Yay.