Down to three singers. New rules. Three phone numbers dedicated for their fans to use to vote. Three songs a piece to show their strengths. No mentors. The judges and AI producers each picked a song. And the contestants did too.
Who is the true original? THE main act? The master of the box office ticket sales?
Blake did his thing... and pulled out some surprises. 3 Great performances. The song Blake hand picked for himself was, "When I Get You Alone." Simon really enjoyed it... complimenting Blake on his strategy of being a risk taker and not playing it safe. Both Melinda (with "I'm a Woman") and Jordin (with "I Who Have Nothing") chose songs they have already performed this season on American Idol. Whether they sing it well or not, how boring is that?
Although they are trying to avoid "going home" week by week, the idol hopefuls were eager to go back this time to be gushed over by thousands of hometown fans. They had the opportunity to return home to: Arizona (where Jordin gets her very own walk of fame-like "star" -- on the floor of a mall), Tennessee (where a street was named, Melinda Doolittle Way) and Washington (where Blake beatboxed to "Baby's Got Back" with Sir Mix-a-Lot -- who called Blake the "new king of Seatown"). At rallies back home, that's where the contestants learned which songs the judges envisioned for them.
Kudos to the judges for their excellent song selections.
Melinda got word through the Gov. of Tennessee. It was really funny how it all went down. The Governor, all straight-laced, joked how he never receives a fax that starts off with "check it out." Then he reads the letter from Randy out loud, "Check it out. I picked a hot one for Melinda to sing this week." It was a song from Whitney Houston, who he calls "one of the best in the known world." And of course, being the ultimate name dropper, he also included in his letter that he's "worked with her before."
Randy always tells contestants not to attempt someone like Whitney, but this was what he picked to challenge the singer who seems to nail it every time. She blew "I Believe In You And Me" out the box. A chilling performance.
Paula wanted Blake to sing "Roxanne" and he did her proud. That boy was on his knees when he was finished that song. He's an entertainer through and through.
Simon picked "Wishing on a Star" for Jordin. Great fit. She "sang it brilliantly," Simon said. But then... the twist, "Even though I chose the song, it wasn't one of her better performances." He didn't like the jazz arrangement put into it.
There was another sort of awkward moment between Jordin and Simon. It was after she sang "I Who Have Nothing." Simon praised her for singing it well, but added that part of him "hated the fact" such a young girl was singing such an old song. He called it a "60 year old song" actually.
In a sarcastic tone, Jordin corrected him through Ryan.. saying the judge was off by 10 years. There was an tense silence, a camera shot of Simon showed a peeved/confused look. Could that portrayal have turned off some voters in this crucial time? I know I was kind of like, what?
The producers' pick for the 17-year-old spunky girl was "She Works Hard for the Money." She worked it, but it doesn't seem like many things come hard to her.
I was impressed how quickly an answer came to Blake after a viewer asked him -- to make up a title to a movie about his life. He was also asked which actor would play him. He responded with Jim Carey in "Organized Chaos." The producers gave Blake "This Love" and he did with a smooth vibe and looked/sounded very comfortable.
When Melinda brings out the Tina Turner in her -- she's on fire. "Nutbush City Limits" was a wise decision on behalf of the producers and an electrifying performance on behalf of the contestant. Simon gave her props for being the most consistent of all singers throughout the entire competition.
So who of these three are getting me out to the box office? Blake hands down. Jordin, nah. I bet I'd like a couple of her songs though. Melinda, I'd go see Melinda, I guess. Maybe at a nice, intimate theatre or something. She's quality, but I can't see myself being too excited about it. I can actually picture myself strolling in... whenever... no rush!
Blake is the sure thing.
Other than the next one out -- singing in this results show are: Maroon 5 and last year's AI's 3rd place contestant, Elliott Yamin.