It isn’t often these days that a television show knows exactly when it is going to end; but “American Idol” does and in its last season the show has chosen to wind up 15 seasons of scouring the country for the best singers with some special first time events.
On Wednesday’s show 12 of the top 24 singers performed a solo of their choosing. On the Thursday show in an Idol first, those 12 singers are being paired with some of the best from seasons past on Idol to perform a duet. By the end of the night only seven of the 12 will survive the week to move on to the next round.
Emily Brooke and season 10 runner up Lauren Alaina get the night of singing off with “Flat on the Floor” by season four winner Carrie Underwood. Harry noted that he learned a lot from the performance like he could hear the difference in their ages; harry added that while it may not have been the best song for Emily, she held her own and gung in well. Agreeing with Harry, Keith noted that it was interesting to watch the two girls. Jennifer noted that it was going to be interesting watching the former Idols come back. Saying that Emily did very good, Jennifer said that Emily had the makings of something.
Thomas Stringfellow pairs up with the reigning “American Idol” winner Nicke Fradiani for the Michael Jackson hit “Man in the Mirror”. Saying that Thomas seemed to struggle a little bit, Keith noted that it was hard to separate the two singers. Saying that the performance felt very Nick, Jennifer said the song didn’t feel right for Thomas. Noting that Thomas’ performance of “Creep” last night was very strong, Harry, said that it wasn’t Thomas’ best performance
Stephanie Negrete pairs up the season two winner Ruben Stoddard for a performance of “Superstar”. Saying that it brought tears to her eyes, Jennifer said they blended well together and sounded beautiful. Harry noted some note issues but felt the performance was strong. Saying that it was a gorgeous song to do, Keith said the voices blended together well.
Sonika Vaid and season 13 winner Caleb Johnson teamed up for a performance of “Skyfall” by Adele. Harry enjoyed the performance a lot; adding that Sonika is an incredible singer and held her own. Saying that he loved hearing Caleb sing again, Keith said that it was a great song choice for Sonika and the two sounded great together. Jennifer agreed that the song was well suited for Sonika.
Jenna Renae and season 10 winner Scotty McCreery performed Scotty’s song “See You Tonight”. Keith noted that the song was tricky for Jenna but found it hard to make any critiques. Jennifer said the song suited Jenna well. Harry said that it was a fun song that sounded great; adding it was an entertaining and solid performance.
La’Porsha Renae and season three winner Fantasia performed “Sumertime” from “Porgy and Bess”. Calling the performance mindblowing, Jennifer said that ti was fun to see things like that (the duet) and La’Porsha did a fantastic job. Saying that they killed it, Harry noted that it wasn’t as much about the song as it was the performance itself. Keith noted that it was the first pairing that the pair was so beautifully matched; adding that the performance was fantastic.
Lauren returns to perform the Lee Ann Womack hit “I Hope You Dance” with McKenzie Bourg. After taking a moment to aknowledge the amount of talent that “American Idol” had brought to the stage over the past 14 years, Harry called the performance sweet and nice; adding that McKenie’s performance last night of “Say Something” was very strong. Keith noted that sparks were fling up on the stage; adding that Lauren likes McKenzie. Keith said htat he loves what McKenzie does with songs and how he always makes them his own. Saying that they seemed a bit mismatched together, Jennifer noted that McKenzie held his own and the performance felt really nice.
Nick and Gianna Isabella performed Nick’s winning single “Beautiful Life”. Keith asked Gianna what it was like to perform with Nick and then noted that she did a good job. Jennifer noted that it was a nice song for them to sing together. Harry said that he was still trying to figure Gianna out; adding that she has a special gift with her incredible voice.
Ruben returns to perform his final song that helped him to win season two with Avalon – “Flying without Wings”. Calling it a great song, Jennifer said that the pair was equally matched and of all the pairings that they have seen so far, it was the performance that seemed the most like a real duet. Noting that there is something so incredibly likable about Avalon; adding that it was a really strong duet. Keith called the performance so real and pleasing to see; adding that it was a great performance.
James VIII was the only performer who played his instrument – guitar – onstage when he and Caleb performed The Rolling Stones hit “Gimme Shelter”. Caleb called James an incredible musician. Noting that it had to be tough since the song was in the center of Caleb’s wheelhouse, Harry said that James did a pretty good job of hanging with Caleb. Noting that Harry said it all, Keith added that he liked the way James performed. Calling it a really good performance, Jennifer noted that the two guys complimented each other.
Scotty and Jeneve Rose Mitchell performed the Montgomery Gentry hit “Gone”. Calling it bizarre, Keith said that he had no idea how Jeneve got saddled with the song because it did nothing for her. Calling her extraordinarily musical, Harry noted that there is no one in the competition like Jeneve. Jennifer said that Jeneve won her over on solo night and reinforced it in her duet; adding that she gets into the lyrics.
Fantasia and Jordan Sasser finish out the night of performances with Fantasia’s winning single “I Believe”. During the performance Jordan lost his monitor but kept going. Saying that Fantasia’s voice brings tears to her eyes, Jennifer noted that Jordan was very lucky to sing with Fantasia; adding that Jordan held his own…which was no easy task. Harry just told Jordan to be careful about upstaging his partner – he walked over and stood in front of Fantasia. Noting that the duets were interesting, Keith said that Fantasia was strong and he would have believed Jordan more if he had reined it in a bit.
After deliberations, the judges chose:
and Jeneve as the singers moving on to the next round.
Emily, Stephanie, Jenna, Jordan, and James were all eliminated from the competition.
photo credit: American Idol group round. (Photo by YouTube)\
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