- Rayvon Owen - "Burn" by Ellie Goulding - Ugh. Not a very good performance. I think Rayon's time on this show might be limited. As Harry said, he has a pattern of building to a climax and high notes. He had already lost me in the beginning of the performance. He was breathing heavily and throwing in whispery (is it a word?) high notes for no reason. It was a mess.
- Maddie Walker - "She's Country" by Jason Aldean - But not as big a mess as this performance was! I'm not sure how a Jason Aldean song could turn into looking like a Pageant performance! But, Maddie pulled it off. Every choreographed move was felt in the performance. I'm sure the new mentor guy (that brought us Taylor Swift! don't you forget it!) determined all of these moves. And yes, she probably wasn't comfortable adding that into her show, but it all felt so forced. The judges tried to give her a pass saying her amazing voice will come out. She may not have the gift of time on her side for that to happen.
- Joey Cook- "Fancy" by Iggy Azalea - And the girl we referred to as Ronald McDonald a few weeks ago continues to impress me. What is happening to this world?? We found out by the end that she did not come up with the arrangement and it was by a band called Post Modern Jukebox. Eh, who cares? At least she owned up to it unlike some of the people in the past (even Nick Fradiani with "In Your Eyes" being totally the Jeffrey Gaines version). It was still a crazy good performance and a smart choice for her. We all questioned if her schtick would get old. It was a smart move to take a popular song and turn it inside out. I wondered if she could survive in the mainstream market. Then I thought about Adele (no I'm not comparing the 2. Adele is one of a kind.). She brings a sort of old fashioned vibe to the modern era and excels at it. So, maybe there is room for someone like Joey Cook to find a niche in the market.
- Clark Beckham - "Taking It To The Streets" by The Doobie Brothers - Whenever I hear this song on this show, I just think of Taylor Hicks with that speeding highway video background behind him and can't help but laugh. I like Clark, but I don't know about this one. It sounded like a carbon copy of Michael McDonald with a couple ad-libbed sing-screams at the end. I'm sure he'll be fine. Harry compared the dude to Ray Charles in how he's introspective and to keep doing that. Hmm, not sure if that's good advice for this show, where you need to win over America. But we shall see.
- Jax - "Blank Space" by Taylor Swift - So, it's a fine line to walk. If you build a reputation of changing up songs and putting your own spin on it, it's probably not advisable to take one of the most popular songs out there right now and sing a sub-par karaoke rendition of it. If she came out and nailed the performance, that would've been one thing. But the song ate her alive. As J-Lo said, the special quality of her voice got lost in the song. I'm sure she'll survive, but she better rethink those song choices!
- Qaasim Middleton - "Jet" by Paul McCartney and Wings - Well, we wanted to see another side of Qaasim and aren't we all terrified that it happened? Everyone acknowledged that his voice is not the greatest and that certainly was on display in this performance. The whole conversation about Suffragettes vs. Giraffes was comical but the point was he didn't feel connected to the song. He'll probably resort to the antics again next week. He might not be the talent I thought he was!
- Adanna Duru - "Runaway Baby" by Bruno Mars - Scotty P (who brought us T. Swizzle y'all!) said that Adanna and her Duru Nation have a chance to win this thing because she has "EDGE". Woaaaa. I've tried to kick her off the show a couple times now, but maybe there's a little bit right about what he's saying. She is a very manic performer, but she was able to get some control over the performance last night. And with a Bruno Mars song like "Runaway Baby" there is huge potential of overdoing it. She somehow made it work. Love that song too.
- Tyanna Jones - "Tightrope" by Jangle Monae - I'm not very familiar with the song but Tyanna certainly knows how to handle a stage and work the crowd. Her singing chops are pretty good too. I don't think she's in any danger of going anywhere just yet.
- Daniel Seavey - "Happy" by Pharell - Ugh, it's happening again. The cute kid keeps getting a pass. Even worse? He knows it! The pre-performance clips had him saying "I can't keep relying on being cute." I mean, he tells himself he's cute too? Maybe that'll lose some of his appeal. Because now I'm just seeing some punk kid with an ego that needs to be knocked off his pedestal. We all know he's not winning the show, so it's just a question of when America will wake up. I have nothing else to say.
- Quentin Alexander - "Rolling in the Deep" by Adele - He sang it well, changed it up just enough to distance it from the original, worked the crowd. Good performance. Nothing spectacular, but he's fine for now just wearing weird things and singing well.
- Nick Fradiani - "Wake Me Up" by Aloe Blacc - You'll be hearing this a lot from me. I just don't get it. He's an average performer with average looks (I got confirmation from the wife that he's just flat out creepy). It was informative to know he used to be in a band. I'm sure I could've guessed. But standing out there with no band surround him certainly could affect his performance. Because the stage was definitely swallowing him whole. But even the vocal is a little much. Lots of extra vibrato where it's not needed. Harry wants to feel the weight of the world when he sings lyrics with those words. I'm not sure it'll do it for me, but I'm sure he'll be back again next week. Sidenote: I don't think because he went last means he was necessarily in the bottom 2. I think the whole concept of bottom performances is gone with this new format.
The curse of going first returned and claimed Sarina-Joi Crowe after a crazy quick and rushed hour show where she didn't have time to get her bearings. I did feel bad for her, and maybe still do a little. But she had a commercial break last night to get her composure and sing for a save. If she had the right song picked, she probably could've impressed the judges. The problem was, it was PARTY SONGS night and she unfortunately had Demi Lovato's "Neon Lights" in her arsenal. That and the One Republic song were not well suited for her voice. And just like that....she's gone. Farewell Sarina-Joi!
Okay, onto the pick from the Top 11!
Safe: Joey, Clark, Qaasim (for now), Adanna, Tyanna, Daniel (ugh), Quentin, Nick
My bottom 3: Rayvon, Maddie, Jax
Elimination Pick: Maddie Walker - Just when I thought she was turning things around on Wednesday, she lost all of that redemption value with the Thursday performance. She's the next logical pick.
Jax had a bad night, but I'm sure she'll bounce back. She is certainly one of the more interesting characters this season.
That's all I have for now, except we all must prepare for April 1st! It better not be an April Fool's Joke but it's going to be Kelly Clarkson night on Idol! She'll be arriving with her new #1 album in her back pocket (Good album, not her best, but still full of catchy and powerful anthems) to guest mentor the kids. She even suggested in a recent interview that she'd be totally up for being a judge on American Idol one day. Judging by her performance on the ill-conceived Duets show on ABC, she could totally pull it off if it ever happened.
Okay I'm really done now. Hope you enjoyed my ramblings and I'll see you next week!