Down to the final seven on American Idol and this week was a big change from last. After last week’s show it was so hard to call because everyone seemed to perform so well. As always, some were slightly better than others but everyone did a commendable job.
This week, though, it was just the opposite. Casey started off with his rendition of a time-honored Fleetwood Mac song (I’ll always think of them as, “Meatwood Flack” for some reason), which didn’t excite me and, apparently not the judges either.
Then came Lee with his version of S&G’s, “The Boxer,” which all the judges liked. Kara said it was the best so far, to which Simon agreed, “Even though we’re only 2 songs in.” Simon said the difference between the first two numbers of the night was ‘staggering,’ and Ellen added that it was Lee’s best performance to date.
Tim did the Goo-Goo Dolls, which Randy classified as, “OK Karaoke,” and Ellen compared to the “soup of the day,’ which she didn’t want and didn’t like. Simon called it a letdown.
Aaron Kelly did well with his performance of, “I believe I Can Fly,” and, while everyone agreed it was a really big song to take on, he made it believable and, perhaps, he really CAN fly. No way Aaron’s going out after that performance!
Siobhan was next, and while this week’s mentor, Alicia Keyes seemed very impressed with her voice (especially the high notes, which Alicia called her ‘money spot’), the judges thought the performance lackluster. Simon was obviously disappointed and opined, “It’s a shame.”
Big Mike (Lynche) did, “Hero.” Like always, Mike seemed focused and as though he was giving it his all. I LIKE MIKE. The judges comments weren’t sterling, but most thought it was ‘okay’. Kara said it wasn’t her favorite. Simon told Mike he thinks he’ll be around for another week.
Then Crystal took the stage. Her song choice was, “People Get Ready,” which has probably been recorded at least a million times, but I always remember it from the old Chambers Brothers version back in the Sixties. She sang the first verse a capella, clean and pure. When the band and backup singers joined in it was moving and powerful. At the end Crystal got choked up, teary eyed and appeared totally vulnerable. The judges loved it!
Randy gave her a personal standing Ovation. Ellen said Crystal had never looked more beautiful and that she just kept getting better and better. Kara thanked her for taking the risk (first song Crystal’s done without her musical instrument to hold onto). She told ‘Momma Sox’ that she had, “just schooled all those other contestants.” Simon was both inspired and impressed. He said the performance was in a, “completely different class to everything else we heard tonight.”
Nice going, Ms. Bowersox. We may be talking about our next American Idol. Six more shows to go!