Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Top 11...Again

Y'all, I was about to throw my TV out the window when they said Casey had been voted off. But then I thought about who bought that TV and I heard the judges say that they were going to use the save. And all was right with the world again.

This week two go. I don't know that I can take it. Last week was one of the best Top 11 shows in the history of AI.

Let's see what happens.

(BTW, what is with Seacrest's hair. He sort of looks like Leonardo DiCaprio from Catch Me If You Can.)

Scotty McCreery - "Country Comfort"
I was a little worried about this one because well, Elton John and country music aren't very "alike" terms. However, Scotty did his thang again. When Jimmy Iovine said in the intro that he was worried that Scotty would become a one-trick pony, I had to agree. But then he said that it was the be one trick he's seen from a 17-year old, and I had to second that as well. The thing I like about Scotty is that he knows who he is and you always know what you are going to get from him. This could come back and bite him in the long run but for now, I think it's working for him. And wow, at the low note at the end. I also loved him and the guitar.

Naima Adedapo - "I'm Still Standing"
This is the first performance of Naima's that I have actually liked. The arrangement was kinda brilliant. There's still something about her that I just can't connect to and I still think that she's one of the weaker ones on the show but, I liked it.

(The judges didn't love it, though. I guess I just like reggae then.)

Paul McDonald - "Rocket Man"
Somehow I knew Paul would do this song. I loved the verse but when he hit the chorus it was kind of all over the place. He reined it in and got it back towards the bridge and I liked the ending, but I don't know. I don't know that it's going to hurt him this week but he probably should have a great week next week if he wants to stay in it.

Pia Toscano - "Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me"
She is incredible. This was brilliant. And even though it was another ballad, it was a soulful change and I loved it. But next week? Give me an upbeat number, puh-puh-puh please?!?

(P.S. Steven just said something about the notes that she chose to sing in that song. He was right. It couldn't have been more perfect and it might have been better than the original IMO.)

Stefano Langone - "Tiny Dancer"
I love this song. I love him. I don't know what it was about the audience -- I guess they were mesmerized because they reacted afterward. He sang it brilliantly. We all know he sings brilliantly. I think it was a good moment for him after last week. I hope people go vote for him because he deserves to be there for a few more weeks.

Lauren Alaina - "Candle In The Wind"
This was incredible and I think she just had an AI moment on that stage just now. She looked like a pro. Lauren reminds me of Natalie, the lead singer of the Dixie Chicks (who were my favorite group until they got on their political high horse). She's got this originality to her country voice, something that you don't find much of in country music. This was the perfect song for her. She killed it, IMO.

James Durbin - "Saturday Night's Alright"
When I heard this song in the open of the show, I knew that James would be the one to do it. And y'all, I loved it. I don't usually love Yelly McScreamy performances (a la Adam Lambert) but I was very much entertained with this one. It was one of his best performances, maybe his best. And Randy made a good point that he comes out and enjoys himself on stage which makes the audience enjoy the performance that much more.

Thia Megia - "Daniel"
I think she accomplished what she wanted with this song. I felt her heart when she was singing this song and it wasn't a drama performance like her last weeks have been. She is such a good singer for 17 years old. The song was really good for her too. Randy's right. It was still a little safe. I just wish she would do something FUN!

Casey Abrams - "Your Song"
Redemption. This song was redemption for Casey. This performance showed everything that we have come to love about Casey. The soft, sweet side for most of the song and the gritty soul towards the end. This was a great change from the past week. Perfection.

Jacob Lusk - "Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word"
Jimmy Iovine was right. This could've been over-dramatized to the nth degree by Jacob but I really felt like he kept it under control. We all know Jacob can sing a heartfelt ballad by now. Now, he's got to figure out another way to get to us. This is a good performance, just not great for me. Would've been a good way to end the show, though.

Haley Reinhardt - "Bennie And The Jets"
I've called a lot of these songs for these people and I called this one for Haley. I really liked how she did this. It started out a little iffy for me but she rocked it at the end, man. I was head-banging and nose-scrunching along with J-Lo. I think this was one of her best performances, maybe her best since she been on this stage. I really did all come together tonight for her. I'm glad for her.

Y'all, this week is going to be HARD! Every single person did a really good job.

Best of the night: Haley, Lauren and James
Worst of the night: Paul and Naima
Probably in trouble: Paul, Naima and (ouch!) Stefano


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

American Idol - Top 11

It's Motown night! I love it!

Casey Abrams - "I Heard It Through The Grapevine"
Other than the screechy parts at the beginning and the end where he tries to go up into his higher register, I loved everything about this performance. For me, Casey Abrams can do no wrong. Loved the BGVs, loved the strings, LOVED how he played to the audience. J-Lo said that she was trying to figure out if there was anyone out there like Casey Abrams right now and to be honest, I was thinking that too throughout this whole performance. I was trying to figure out who he sounded like and who he reminded me of, but I couldn't come up with anyone. That's fantastic. He knows who he is and he stays true to that, and everyone also knows exactly what they are getting with Casey. Casey said that this is where he was most comfortable, and it definitely showed tonight. Great way to start the show.

Thia Megia - "Heat Wave"
I enjoyed seeing this side of Thia. She looked more comfortable and I think it was a nice change for her. I still think she's got a lot of work to do when it comes to connecting with the audience right now. (And she missed a few lyrics too.) It's sad because she's got an INCREDIBLE voice. There was not one bad note in that performance, but I feel like she played it a little safe. She could've taken that song on a ride, belted a little bit and added some Diana Ross-type runs, but she didn't. And I know it's just because she's just a shy girl. I want her to do so well and I feel like AI just needs to crack that shell of hers. But she did look precious.

(Does anyone else get the feeling that Steven Tyler is just there for the front row seat and to make funny (and sometimes inappropriate) jokes? He loves every performance and never has anything bad to say. Dear Steven, judge already!)

Jacob Lusk - "You're All I Need"
Ok, y'all know that Jacob Lusk has been disappointing me lately with all the crazy runs and high notes and stuff. Well, tonight, Jacob won me over. I loved the restraint that he showed without losing himself and his style. Jacob took the critique that he has been getting and applied it this week and it paid off. This song was pitch-perfect and performance-perfect. What I love about Jacob is that he puts all of himself into every song that he sings, and I loved when he said that he doesn't just want to go out and sing a song that everyone knows but that he wants to sing something that is going to inspire someone. I wish that y'all could've seen my face during this performance because my eyes were as wide and my smile was as big as it gets. I love love loved this performance!

Lauren Alaina - "Keep Me Hanging On"
First of all, I'm not an animal print person but I LOVED her dress! Second of all, I loved this performance. She brought every single bit of confidence out there on the stage and left it out there. I think this was one of her better performances and I loved how she fused her little country twang swag into it. It was really good, and I'm glad that she did well this week. I hope this will be a confidence boost for her.

Stefano Langone - "Hello"
Y'all know I have a slight TV crush on Stefano. He is precious and his voice is like "butta" to me. I never really liked this song until they did it on Glee. Then I fell in love with it. Now, I'll probably buy it on iTunes and play it over and over again. Stefano has incredible pitch and feels his songs a lot like Jacob does. He did better with the closing of the eyes issue that everyone seems to be preoccupied with, but my stance on that is if you are feeling a song, you can't help but close your eyes. Either way, it was one of my favorites of the night.

(P.S. I don't understand what they aren't seeing emotionally. I'm feeling his passion from my living room so I don't see what they are missing.)

Haley Reinhart - "You Really Got A Hold On Me"
There's no denying that Haley can sing. We all know that and we all know that she can belt and do runs and all that. I just don't think that this was the right song for her. I think she could've KILLED some Aretha, and that's saying a lot. But then again, Aretha may have been too predictable. I'm not saying it was a bad performance by any means either, I just don't think that it did anything to indicate what kind of artist she will be. I can see her as an Adele/Alicia Keys-type artist but this wasn't it.

Scotty McCreery - "For Once In My Life"
Ok, Scotty's already got a record deal waiting for him. The kid is pure country music. I really actually liked the arrangement and it fit pretty well as a country song. My problem was that Scotty was a little awkward. I feel like maybe he tried to rock it a little to hard where the song just wasn't rockable. There was nothing else wrong with the song except for that. Scotty knows how to play to an audience, probably more than anyone else on the show. That alone will probably save him. I just didn't like the awkwardness of the non-rockable parts of the song.

Pia Toscano - "All In Love Is Fair"
I was really hoping that she would do an upbeat song but it didn't matter because she just killed that song. She had a nice little Celine Dion vibe going there. The way that she transitions from her chest voice to her head voice is fuh-law-less. She's just so good. I hope that this ballad deal doesn't get too old for people but I think that if she continues to kill songs like that, it won't even matter.

Paul McDonald - "Tracks Of My Tears"
I can't hear this song without thinking of my Dad's performance of it at my sister's rehearsal dinner. I wish I had video because it was incredible, complete with handmade props. But I digress. I loved the singer-songwriter vibe that Paul put on this song. That is totally his element and he seemed much more comfortable up there with his guitar. Also, the guitar prevent the herky-jerky moves that he's been laying out on stage lately too. This really showed what kind of artist Paul is going to be.

Naima Adedapo - "Dancing In The Street"
I thought this was one of Naima's better performances. She wasn't as pitchy as she usually is. I think she did make it a performance with the African vibe added to it but I could've done without the dancing. I think she could've done a lot more vocally with this song but maybe she played it a little safe this time so that she wouldn't be called out for being pitchy this week. I still haven't found what I'm looking for with Naima. She's just okay for me.

James Durbin - "Livin' For The City"
Ok, I've been comparing James to Adam Lambert for a while. I now think that he's nothing like Adam Lambert. Why? Because Adam Lambert was a showy fake rocker. He became what his voice sounded like. James' voice is who he is. He's a true blue rock 'n' roller. He's got the soulful sound that Steven Tyler has that makes him who he is. I'm actually starting to like James. I think this was a good performance for him.

Best of the night: Jacob and Lauren Alaina
Worst of the night: (This is a hard one because I enjoyed them all) For me, it was Hailey.
In trouble: Hailey, Naima and Paul

What do you think?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

American Idol - Top 12

I promise one day I'm going to write about actual life on this here blog one day soon, but for now, I'll just keep to my couch-potato judging ways.

Naima Adedapo - "What's Love Got To Do With It"
I didn't think that warranted a standing ovation but it was just okay for me. (I wish Steven could be mean, just once.) It was very pitchy. (Thanks, J-Lo.) She's definitely a good entertainer. But she's got some work to do when it comes to the actual singing part. Her pitch is off. I think if she gets that, I might like her a little more.

Paul McDonald - "I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blue"
This makes me sad. I didn't really know how this song would go off with him and I didn't really like it much. I just don't think it was the right song. I still love his voice and his charisma. He definitely made it sound original but I just don't think it was his best performance.

Thia Megia - "Colors Of The Wind"
I think this song was perfect for her because she fits the Disney pop princess mold to a T. She's got an incredible voice for a 16 year old. And she wrote her first song at 6? I wrote a song when I was 8 but it wasn't as good as that one. And I kind of ripped off "White Christmas" too. However, I'm a little concerned that she doesn't really know what type of artist she is (ballads) and I'm also concerned that she's losing her luster a little.

James Durbin - "I'll Be There For You"
The first line of this was kind of horrible but he totally redeemed himself afterwards. This was the first GOOD performance of the night. He's a great performer and this definitely the genre of music for him. But we've always known that. He's going to be one of those that will always put his spin on a song . And that's good for someone like him. He's growing on me.

Hailey Reinhart - I'm Your Baby Tonight"
When I heard she was doing Whitney Houston, I was hoping she would pick this song. It's not as well known as the others so she doesn't have so much to live up to but it's a different vibe for her. I thought this was great and I thought it was her best performance since she's been on this stage. She definitely brought originality to the song with the awesome bluesy-jazzy tone of her voice. She really relaxed up there and kind of rocked it, and I was glad to see this side of her. Good job. She also looked fantastic (except did anyone else catch that she had a spot of lipstick on her chin and her cheek where she must've rubbed the microphone over it? Ha. And now that Ryan pointed out, I guess you did.).

Stefano Langone - "If You Don't Know Me Be Know"
Stefano, I feel, has incredible pitch. The kid could sing the ABC song and it was sell records. He is mad talented and feels every single word he is singing. I definitely agree that this was the best performance of the night so far. It was a hard song for someone to sing because of many different reason, two of which are that it's iconic and two because it has the potential to be slow and boring. Stefano put so much soul into that and I expect nothing less. He's still my second favorite boy in this competition.

Pia Toscano - "Where Do Broken Hearts Go"
Y'all, PIa Toscano has come out of nowhere and has become a front-runner of this competition. I was glad this wasn't another ballad and I was a little worried when she said she was doing this song. But she nailed it. Nailed. It.

Scott McCreery - "Can I Trust You With My Heart"
This was a great performance by Scotty. He knows who he his and where he wants to go with it. Nothing more to say except the girls really like him.

Karen Rodriguez - "Love Will Lead You Back"
This is the first night that she looks like an actual performer and not a pageant contestant. I believed her as an artist tonight for the first time. I feel like her voice is still one of the weaker ones in the competition. I want to believe that she has more power in that voice of her but every time she gets to a powerful peak in her voice, she doesn't go with it. She falls back on it. But it was a great performance.

Casey Abrams - "Smells Like Teen Spirit"
This was a gutsy move for Casey Abrams. He either just gained a lot of fans or lots a lot. I loved this performance. It's one-of-a-kind for this show. I think he killed it.

Lauren Alaina - "I'm The Only One"
REDEMPTION. This was the perfect song for her and for someone who is battling the flu, she killed it. SO GOOD.

Jacob Lusk - "Alone"
I really thought he would kill this. And some people probably thought he did. I feel like he was sharp throughout a lot of this performance. He's got to tone it down a little because when he over-sings is where he really starts to get sharp. He's still great and I love the way he pours his soul into every song he sings. That's what a gospel singer does. But I don't think it was his best. still better than "I Believe I Can Fly".

Best of the night: Stefano and Lauren Alaina
Worst of the night: Paul and Karen
In Jeopardy: Paul because I don't how many people he's connecting with and Karen because I don't think she has stepped it up as much as everyone else has. I mean who would you send home over her?

What are your thoughts?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

American Idol - Top 13

In a season with all the twists and the turns, I would expect nothing less than a Top 13.

Let's do this.

Lauren Alaina - "Any Man Of Mine"
This song takes me back to Paige Flanagan's bedroom and our feeble attempts at country line dancing. That's right, I said, country. line. dancing. But I digress. I think Lauren could sing the phonebook and I'd love it. This girl's voice is so effortless. But I don't think the song was just right. I love the song but I think it was a little weak to open the show. With that said, she is a pure country talent and she will have a great career whether she wins American Idol or not. And she's cute as a button.

Casey Abrams - "With A Little Help From My Friends"
Casey Abrams could be Brody Jenner's long lost homeless twin brother. Look it up, people. It's the truth. Anyway, Casey just killed that song. I would by a ticket to his concert tomorrow. They talked about feeling and being felt and stuff, Casey Abrams makes me feel what he sings every time. I love him. I hope he goes very far.

Ashthon Jones - "When You Tell Me That You Love Me"
This girl could've killed this song but she didn't. It was just okay for me. I hope everyone else liked it because I like her. She's got the IT factor. Of course she reminds me of Beyonce, but I see a lot of Jennifer Hudson in her. She a D-I-V-A, fo sho.

Paul McDonald - "Come Pick Me Up"
I know a lot of people may not like Paul because, well, he's a little awkward on stage. I think he's very natural and raw. When he sings, it's not premeditated. I felt like this may not have been the best song for him. It possibly started a little low because he would just go flat on the last notes of the phrases in the first verse. But like homeboy said on the intro package, Paul's voice is something AI's needed for a while so I hope this performance didn't hurt him too much. Maybe all of the girls will just remember his beautiful smile.

Pia Toscano - "All By Myself"
Wow. That is all.

James Durbin - "Maybe I'm A Man"
I still can't get over how he reminds me of Adam Lambert and, well, we all know how I feel about him. With that said, I thought James reined in the yelly-voice and did this song justice. He did well.

Haley Reinhart - "Blue"
That was really good. Not too many people can do those yodel-y parts that well and she did. I think she did it better than LeAnn. But, well, I'm not a big LeAnn fan anyway.

Jacob Lusk - "I Believe I Can Fly"
I called this song from last Tuesday. I did y'all. But he ripped the song apart when he started to over sing it and it was not good. The beginning and the end were great. The middle? Horrid. I wish he would realize that he doesn't have to over sing to make something great.

Thia Megia - " Smile"
This was very good. She's ridiculously talented for a 15-year-old. I wish she hadn't done the jazzy bit (as Randy just said) but her voice is incredible.

Stefano Langone - "Lately"
Stefano Langone could be the next Bruno Mars. That's who he sounds like to me. I love his voice. He is so cute. And he's definitely got the girl vote. I was worried when he started the double-time but I liked it in the end.

Karen Rodriguez - "I Could Fall In Love"
I am just not a big fan of Karen. She's too pageant-y for me. I think there are better singers on the show than her. I'm just glad she stuck to the American language tonight.

Scotty McCreery - "The River"
I think Scotty is precious and saw him get comfortable on the stage for the first time tonight. I'll be interested to see how far he goes. He's going to grow up on that stage.

Naima Adedapo - "Umbrella"
She was pitchy, very pitchy. I think she was trying to push it too hard. I think my favorite part was where she rapped actually. Ha. It was a performance, indeed, but I don't think it was a very good performance. But the judges have a lovefest with her so we'll see.

Best of the night: Pia and Casey
Worst of the night: Karen and Naima
Probably going home: Karen


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

American Idol: Top 12 Girls

1. Ta-tynisa Wilson - "Only Girl In The World"
Y'all, the music is just a tad LOUD, don'tcha think? Her notes weren't really hitting for me and it took a little while for her to show some originality. She did towards the end. It was a good way to open the show. She definitely played to the crowd but I think maybe that was the best part of it.

2. Naima Adedapo - "Summertime"
This a bold choice of song considering that this song basically belongs to Fantasia in the realm of American Idol. I liked the arrangement she used and it sounded good. There were a few spots that she didn't hit just right and then there was the one time she turned her back to the audience to walk back up the steps and I heard my mom circa 1999 in musical practice yelling,"NEVER TURN YOUR BACK TO THE AUDIENCE! NEVER!" Anyhoo, I do like her sound. It was a little "lounge-acty" as Randy said, but I totally think that's her vibe. I haven't been a big fan of Naima but she might just be growing on me.

3. Kendra Chantelle - "Impossible"
Y'all, that white girl just pulled off some Christina Aguilera. I think Randy and I are using the same brain tonight because I definitely just said she has a little Lauryn Hill sound. Kendra is good. Is she the American Idol? I don't think so but I see her staying around for a while.

4. Rachel Zevita - "Criminal"
Wow. This is a completely original take on a Fiona Apple song. I'm not sure how it went off. The audience seemed to like it. It was bold. And yes, it was a little show girl-y. I don't know that it really worked for the show.

5. Karen Rodriguez - "Hero"
Pageant. Karen Rodriguez is on the wrong show. Miss America was back in January and Karen, you might have given Miss Arkansas and her dummies a run for their money. Karen Rodriguez can sing. No doubt. However, the whole bilingual thing turned me off a little bit because it's um...AMERICAN Idol. With that said, though, she made it her own. It was one of a kind.

6. Lauren Turner - "Seven Day Fool"
Homegirl can sing. I loved this performance. She turned it around for me. A breath of fresh air, she was.

7. Ashthon Jones - "Love All Over Me"
This girl is a diva. She's got mad confidence. And if Destiny's Child decided to give it another go 'round, this girl would fit right in. She was good, and considering that I've never heard this song, it was as original as you can get in my book. The judges say she's Diana Ross confidence. I believe she could be the lost Knowles sister.

8. Julie Zorrilla - "Breakaway"
I really didn't like this song for her. I think she strayed too far away from the melody for me. I truly think she can sing because she rocked Hollywood week, but this song did not show it off. I think she tried to over do it.

9. Haley Reinhart - "Fallin'"
I love the sound of this girl's voice. She's so soulful. And at the same time, I think she has musical bipolar syndrome. That's when someone seems one way and then they are handed a mic and told to sing and they become this completely different person. Randy and I are not using the same brain anymore. I loved this. I think Randy feels a little pressure to be the hard judge because he knows that neither Steven nor J-Lo are going to say anything remotely negative.

10. Thia Megia - "Out Here On My Own"
Y'all, I couldn't even type during this performance, I was so captivated. From the first note, I was. That was incredibly brave and incredibly good. Pitch-perfect. I have nothing more to say.

11. Lauren Alaina - "Turn On The Radio"
This girl will be a country music star in a year and she will be successful. Why? Because country music fans are some of the most loyal fans in the world. There's nothing more to say than she can sing. It's natural and effortless. For realz. And she's got the "it" factor.

12. Pia Toscano - "I'll Stand By You"
One of the best vocals tonight. I was afraid for her to follow Thia and Lauren but seriously, the bottom of the order ripped back-to-back home runs. Completely deserving of a standing ovation. She worried me at the beginning but busted it at the end.

Best of the night: Thia, Lauren Alaina and Pia
Worst of the night: Rachel

What did you think?

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

American Idol: Top 12 Guys

It's back. The new season of American Idol, so it can only mean that I must indulge myself as a Couch Potato Judge.

I'm channeling my inner J-Lo. (Ahem, a girl can dream right?)

Tonight was the first live show, with the top 12 guys performing. Here are my thoughts.

1. Clint Jun Gamboa - "Superstitious"
I've got to say that when Ryan Seacrest was saying this kid's entire name I thought he was saying Clint "June" Gamboa. I was perplexed as to why a guy would have the nickname "June", and then I tried to hold back any judgement until further review. Then I saw the name graphic on the show tonight. I stand corrected.

I still don't get the glasses though.

Now about the performance, I believe the term "karaoke" is appropriate here. Steven Tyler just used the term "brilliant" and I suddenly find myself missing Simon Cowell.

2. Jovany Baretto - "I'll Be"
First, I've got to admit that this guy isn't horrible to look at. I think what makes me like him is the fact that he is just so unassuming. He doesn't look like a singer, and the minute he opens his mouth, you're like "Whaaaa?" His voice is like butta.

Randy does have point that there wasn't anything unique brought to it but it still was good enough for me. It wasn't any more karaoke than Clint's performance.

3. Jordan Dorsey - "OMG"
This guy is too cocky for his own good. You can't come out of the gate with an URSHER song! What is this? It doesn't even sound good. Jordan Dorsey, we are done here. Also, if Usher is not the type of artist you want to be, then why did you chose that song to sing?

(Has anyone noticed that J-Lo has got the palms-only Paula clap down?)

4. Tim Halperin - "Come On Over"
I've gotta say that I didn't notice Tim until the duet he did with the other girl and the piano during Hollywood week. But when I noticed him, I NOTICED him. Kid's got soul.

With that said, this wasn't his best performance. I'm sure nerves played a big part in it and he probably pushed it a little bit. And also, his stage presence could use a boost. I still think he could do great things on this show.

He's got a winning smile though.

5. Brett Loewenstern - "Come On Baby Light My Fire"
I still don't understand how that voice comes out of that body. This is the first performance of the night that showed some originality, which kind of hurts me to say because I've not been a big fan of his. But I was just thinking, it's going to be long night if the first three performances are any indication of how this night will go. Brett picked it up. He was definitely a "little pitchy", as Randy would say, but it got better.

6. James Durbin - "You've Got Another Thing Comin'"
I just guessed on the title of the song because I'd never heard it before and well, he said that phrase a lot. This guy reminds me to much of Adam Lambert which is sadly a strike and a half against him. He's definitely a performer and you can tell that he knows what kind of artist he is and wants to be. And also he sings from deep down and I do like his story. It'll be interesting to see how far he goes in the competition. It was definitely the best performance so far.

7. Robbie Rosen - "Arms Of An Angel"
I love this kid, first because he reminds me of one of my student workers who is just precious, but second because the kid can just sing. I did feel like he never got with the music but his voice just can't be denied. He definitely put his originality in it, and I hope he goes far because his talent is one in a million.

8. Scotty McCreery - "Letter From Home"
I guessed on the title again because well, I think I've made it clear that I'm not a huge country fan. With that said though, I've loved this kid from his first audition. The guy can sing. No doubt. He's got amazing stage presence too and he knows exactly who he is and is proud of it.

9. Stepfano Langone - "Just The Way You Are"
This was the perfect song for him to sing and that shows that he knows exactly what kind of artist he wants to be. He could be a great R&B artist. He's still got some growing to do as evidenced by the high note he tried at the end. But I love this kid. And he's definitely got the girl vote. I hope he stays around for a while because I think it would be fun to see how much better he gets.

10. Paul McDonald - "Wake Up Maggie"
Perfect song for him. Some people may not like his style but this style is the exact thing that is trending right now. I love what he brings to the competition. He's so sincere. He's not trying to put on a show or be something he's not. He's doing him and that's great. That smile is perfect too. (Can I find out how he gets his teeth so white?) I hope he's around for a long time.

11. Jacob Lusk - "A House Is Not A Home"
If Diana Ross died and came back as a man, it would be Jacob Lusk. He's got great stage presence and he can definitely sing. He's got a bold voice. He's going to stay around for a while for the sheer fact that the kid can wail. However, I don't know how long it will take before the audience starts to get annoyed with him. He may be a one-trick pony. I hope not. But we will see. He's good. His notes are en pointe.

12. Casey Abrams - "I Put A Spell On You"
Y'all, this kid emanates soul and talent. He surprises me every week. Last week, never would I have thought he would pull out "Why Don't You Do Right". This week, he's sans instrument and completely rocks "I Put A Spell On You". This guy is the REAL DEAL.

(And I'm so glad to see that he cleans up well. I was starting to wonder.)

So, my faves are Casey and Stefano. Not-so-faves are Clint and Jordan.

What do you think?