Danny Gokey — Stand By Me by Ben E King
This song is a bit of a stretch for the whole ‘year you were born’ thing. The song was written about 20 years before Danny Gokey was born. Ok, so he’s doing the version from the movie. Whatever, it’s still a stretch. Danny does not start off well. I’m not sure if he’s ever gone first before, so he may not be ready for it. He also does this really slow drawn-out beginning and moves into a really boring adult contemporary middle. Yawn. I may be the target demo for adult contemporary, but I don’t want to hear it on American Idol. Kathy calls it the Ashford & Simpson version of “Stand By Me.” Randy did not love the arrangement, but he loves Danny. Kara thinks he killed it at the end. Meh. Paula thinks Danny has set the bar high for tonight. Simon thought overall it was great.
Kris Allen — All She Wants To Do Is Dance by Don Henley
Kris has decided to put a funky spin on the song. Kathy thinks George Clinton must’ve done this version. Kris is in the ‘mosh pit’ and the girls & one gay guy look like they were told to look less than interested. They get more interested when they can tell that they’re on camera. Kara thinks his take was like jazz class school homework. Paula thinks Kris is one of the most likable contestants, which is kind of like saying ‘you look pretty’ to the girl contestants. Simon lays it out & calls it boring and lazy. Stupid song choice because he looked like a guitarist who wanted to sing, rather than a singer. Randy lost Kris in all of this with the horns & all the other stuff going on.
Lil Rounds — What’s Love Got To Do With It by Tina Turner
Well finally Lil goes back to being funky. Too bad she’s dressed more like the Mad Max style Tina was rocking later in the ’80s. I think Tina was a good choice for Lil, but I’m not sure if this was the best Tina Turner song to pick. I’d have rather heard “Private Dancer.” Paula begins by saying that Lil looks great. Uh-oh. Paula dings Lil for not putting her stamp on the song. Simon says they’re not looking for a second- or third-rate Tina Turner. Randy concurs that it’s not clicking for Lil. Kara talks about artistry, and I would totally take a drink if I could do so without spilling. Lil promises to make a major leap next week if she’s able. Oh, Lil, we’ve heard that for the past three or four weeks…
Anoop Desai — True Colors by Cyndi Lauper
Anoop was very happy about the Tarheels win the other night, but disappointed because he got snippy with Kara last week. I wasn’t mad at you, Anoop. Kara needs to be snipped at every once & awhile. I’m crossing my fingers for him with this song. I think he could do a great job with it, but he’s been in the bottom, so he’s got to do great with it. He does a fairly decent job, even if he doesn’t do too much new with it. Randy congrats the Tarheels for Anoop. He also gives him props for his singing. Kara says that Anoop controlled the song instead of letting the song control him. Paula thinks his choice was brilliant and that he did show his true colors like a rainbow. Simon calls him a singing yo-yo. He was bad last week, and good this week. Simon also says the judges are mean to them, so the contestants have carte blanche to be mean back. Sweet!
Scott MacIntyre — The Search Is Over by Survivor
Why does Scott deliberately select songs that I absolutely, completely hate? Why, Scott, why? This song is a complete piece of crap, and he’ll talk about how meaningful it is to him. Blech. This time Scott’s got a guitar. It takes awhile for him to actually start playing it. And by playing, I mean strumming a few chords. Like I should talk, because I can’t play at all, but come on. He’s got no stage presence and a mediocre voice. He’s going on tour, let the kid go already. Kara commends him for taking on a very difficult song. Survivor? Difficult? Really? There are parts Kara liked, and parts she thought were overambitious. Paula gives him credit for stepping away from the piano. She questions his choice of an electric guitar, and he says it’s his punk side coming out. Punk side? Survivor? Really? Simon suggests he goes back to the piano next week & calls the song horrible. Randy thought it was all ok, but nothing exciting.
Allison Iraheta — I Can’t Make You Love Me by Bonnie Raitt
Allison was born in 1992. 1992. Sigh. I was in college in 1992. I feel really, really old, but I love this song. Not sure about this song for 16-year-old Allison, though. She does regularly channel 40-year-old Allison. 40-year-old Allison dressed like Madonna in her La Isla Bonita days. Allison doesn’t really do much with the song, and it’s obvious to me that she hasn’t been crushed enough to really deliver the song. Paula knows that when Allison opens her mouth, it’s Allison. Simon thought it was very good, but Allison needs to bring her personality over so that she’s more likable. Randy brings up the Kelly Clarkson comparison. Kara thinks Allison made the song believable. Really, Kara? Did you really believe it, ’cause I didn’t. I like Allison, but I didn’t believe she’s pining for someone who just doesn’t give a crap. Sing that one again in 15 years, Allison.
Matt Giraud — Part Time Lover by Stevie Wonder
I’m scared. This could be so cheesy. Matt starts out slow & seems like he’s going to stick with a funky interpretation. Whew. He puts a bunch of crazy runs in it, and I think he’s wearing a rosary around his neck. His jacket is also very close to a Member’s Only jacket. Randy calls it vocally one of the best of the night. Kara calls it incredible, Paula gives a standing O and Simon says a million times better than last week. Ok, yes, it was better than last week, but I was kinda ‘meh’ about it. I didn’t think he hit the power notes, but what do I know.
Adam Lambert — Mad World by Tears for Fears
Tell me he’s doing the Gary Jules version from Donnie Darko. Please tell me he’s doing the Gary Jules version from Donnie Darko…. Adam and I share a birthday. Granted I was born a full decade before Adam, but Oprah’s older than me, so I guess I’m ok with it. Oh, he’s so doing the Gary Jules version. Sweet. Ok, the choice of up lighting his seat makes it look like he’s got a glowing butt. Otherwise the lighting designers are just loving this kid. He’s killing this song. Can we give him the title now? Simon is the only one who gets to speak. All he does is give him a standing O. Has Simon ever done that? I can’t remember if he has. Anyone? Has Simon ever done that before?
Well, I would guess that Scott might be going home this week, but he’s survived weak performances past. Who will get the axe tomorrow night? America, you decide. Tomorrow night we get the Pickle. Pick Pickler!