Seven thousand American Idol fans packed the Nokia Theater in downtown Los Angeles to witness the final showdown between Lee DeWyze and Crystal Bowersox. They’re both great. They both have star quality. They’ll both be rich shortly. However, Crystal Bowersox blew Lee out of the water with her performances tonight on American Idol. Lee’s nerves got the best of him, but Crystal proved once and for all that she should be the one walking away with the prize on Wednesday, May 26th.
Lee DeWyze is the ex-painter-a shy, raspy-voiced, powerful singer from Illinois who can connect with a song and really belt it out. He has a personable quality that endears him to an audience. I love his voice and his style.
Crystal Bowersox is the mother from Ohio-a bluesy rock-chic with big pipes, a distinctive flair, and a voice that can make any audience get up on their feet. She’s not your typical American Idol contestant…and that’s just one of many reasons I’ve liked her from the start.
The two contestants competed in three rounds on tonight’s American Idol. Crystal won a previous coin toss; therefore, she chose to perform after Lee.
Lee sang Simon and Garfunkel’s “The Boxer”, the song he performed so well during ‘Inspirational Week’. It was a solid performance, but Lee looked scared the entire night. I think it hurt his chances.
Crystal chose Janis Joplin’s “Me and Bobby McGee” from the ‘#1 Billboard Hits Week’. She was on fire and out to win. Her voice is crisp, clear and emotional.
Round 1 went to Crystal.
Executive producer Simon Fuller picked the songs for round two. Lee sang R.E.M.’s “Everybody Hurts”. He seemed to be holding back. Maybe looking out at those 7,000 fans was getting to him. I don’t blame him.
Crystal sang “Black Velvet”, a song recorded by Alannah Miles in 1989. Crystal had some trouble maneuvering the stairway…but not the music.
Round 2 went to Crystal.
For the final round of the night, the contestants each sang a song designed to be their first recording if chosen the American Idol of 2010.
Lee’s song was “A Beautiful Day”. I wanted to give a round to Lee, but Crystal was just hot tonight and Lee was good, but not great. The judges all had high praise for him, yet they seemed to be saying, “You’re a great guy, but you won’t win.”
Crystal’s last song was “Up to the Mountain”. It was powerful and emotional. The competition ended on a high note with that performance. Simon Cowell gave his final critique on American Idol by telling Crystal her performance was “outstanding”. He said it all.
Round 3 went to Crystal.
Simon Cowell’s days of judging American Idol have come to a close. Like him or not, it won’t be the same without him.
Now America votes, and the winner will be announced on Wednesday, May 26th’s American Idol. Rumor has it there will be lots of great entertainment in store.