Top 13. Woo hoo! I hope it’s more inspiring than last season was, I really do.
1. Lauren Alaina – Shania Twain. That seems like a good choice for her, actually. It’s a good song, too, though I expect her to be a little more high energy on it for some reason rather than just pacing back and forth on the stage. With this kind of rolling beat, you want people to get up on their feet, and I just never felt that. The vocals were strong, though.
2. Casey Abrams – Casey makes me grin, and this is another great inspiration since Cocker is such an unconventional kind of performer. Yes, he shouted parts of the song, but that’s what the song is, and it’s completely Casey’s style. What a great fit.
3. Ashthon Jones – She sounded very nervous at the beginning, with a vibrato in her voice that flattened a lot of her notes. I still don’t understand why they saved her.
4. Paul McDonald – I can’t decide if he’s doing himself any favors with this song choice. I’ll bet a lot of people don’t know it, but he’s so joyful up there, it’s hard not to get caught up with him. The beginning was too low for him, but he brought it around for the chorus and end. I wonder if Simon was here if he’d compare him to Taylor Hicks with the way he moves around, because I had flashes of him (which isn’t necessarily a good thing for me because I wasn’t a Taylor fan).
5. Pia Toscano – I’m not a Celine fan, but I do love this song. I get goosebumps when I listen to the Celine recording, and though I didn’t necessarily get it with Pia, it’s a powerful performance, and she certainly has the chops to blast it.
6. James Durbin – Paul McCartney seems like an odd choice for James, but I love this song, and when he started, I got excited. He had the strength and control to power through the chorus. Plus, I think it really helped to remind the AI audience that this boy can sing. His high notes are just as effortless as the ones solidly within his normal range. My favorite performance of the night so far.
7. Haley Reinhart – That first note was painful. It sorted itself out, but she seemed very nasal to me tonight. The entire performance felt uninspiring and flat.
8. Jacob Lusk – I’ve said it before. I don’t understand Jacob’s appeal, and I know I’m in the minority there. When he said he was singing R. Kelly, though, I wondered if he’d change my mind. I love this song. But…no. I can appreciate the breath support it takes to sustain that one section, and I can see that he’s obviously feeling it, but…it just leaves me cold. I don’t get it.
9. Thia Megia – Oh, the poor girl is so nervous. She was shaking so badly at the start of the song that I felt bad for her. She found her place when the tempo picked up, though. Some of the notes weren’t quite there, but only a few.
10. Stefano Langone – What are these funny faces he keeps making while he’s singing? I don’t remember it being so bad before. He sounded really out of breath through the whole thing, too. The chorus got better, but nowhere near as good as he was last week.
11. Karen Rodriguez – Gee, Selena? How not a surprise. She’s far more comfortable with the higher notes than the lower ones. She kept swallowing the beginnings. Did she get ahead of the band? Did they really end that much sooner than her? I’m not familiar enough with the song to know for sure if that’s a part of the song or a choice she made.
12. Scotty McCreery – Yuck. Of all the country artists he could have chosen, he picked one I hate. I never understood his popularity at all. I can’t fault the vocal in this, but honestly, it sounded a lot like most of his previous performances. Kind of safe and dull. I have a small confession, too. I’ve been a fan of his for a while, but I talked to my sister last week about who made and who didn’t. She actually lives in North Carolina and had seen Scotty at his job in the interim before the semi-finals. But she pointed out that she can’t see him without seeing Alfred E. Neuman, and now I can’t either, lol.
13. Naima Adedapo – Whoa, girl’s got moves. They really added to the performance, too, because it gave her a whole new vibe she’s never quite had before. I’ve always thought of her as more bluesy, but this proves she can do something else. She was losing the music when she was moving, and maybe the song doesn’t provide a lot to do vocally, but I think it was different enough and energetic enough to keep her around.
MY TOP THREE
MY BOTTOM THREE
Who do I think will be in the bottom three? Ashthon, Stefano, and Haley. I would love for Ashthon to go home.