Wed, Feb 24th, 2010 by VIE® Magazine
Photo of the Top 12 Girls by americanidol.com
American Idol Blogger
I acquired the love of good R&B music in my teens, growing up in the suburbs of Detroit. I am talking about classic R&B – Smokey Robinson is the cousin of one of my former neighbors and his music is the epitome of R&B. It is the music that makes me feel something deep down in my heart. Throw in a little Gospel flavor and I am set!
After moving down to Florida seven years ago, I was exposed to Country music, which I never listened to in Michigan. Gosh darn it, I discovered I liked it! Maybe it was the stories behind the music or the fact that the Country station here comes in very clear, but regardless, I found myself enjoying a new genre.
Which leads me to my favorite girls from the Top 24 of Season 9 on American Idol – Michelle Delamor and Janell Wheeler, both of Florida. Michelle, is my R&B smooth singing girl and Janell, is the Country singer.
Last night on American Idol, the Top 12 girls performed live for the first time. There were some great performances and not-so-great. The mantra that never dies is “song choice, song choice, song choice.”
I am afraid that my two girls might be in danger of going home. Michelle chose “Fallin” by Alicia Keyes. She looked great, sounded great but the judges thought the song choice was too safe – that she had more in her to give. I agree but she wasn’t shown that much previous to this show, so she does not have the fan base established that can vote her through. Based on that, we might not get to hear more from her on Idol.
There are two country girls in the Top 24, Janell and Haeley Vaughn. Haeley is the African-American Taylor Swift; her vocals are not on par with the rest of the Top 12 but she is bubbly and does light up the stage with her smile. Her rendition of “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” by the Beatles, was a fresh take but “pitchy.” Janell, is more of the traditional Country singer – so why did she pick “What About Love” by Heart? Nerves played a factor last night for quite a few of the performers and she was one of them. Judge Ellen DeGeneres was the only judge who liked her song choice but Simon thought she would stay. I hope he is right because while she fits the bill of pretty blonde who can sing, there are several blondes who gave stronger performances.
Speaking of the judges, a few observations: “Simon and Kara” do not equate “Simon and Pauler.” The touching between them looked manufactured not genuine. Ellen, on the other hand, was genuine in giving feedback, which I was looking forward to each time she spoke.
The stand-outs of the night were Crystal Bowersox, who sang Alanis Morissette’s “Hand in My Pocket,” playing the guitar and harmonica. She is a natural performer and sang the heck out of that song. Katie Stevens, even choosing the wrong song “Feeling Good” by Michael Buble, showed why the producers gave her the coveted closer spot and Siobhan Magnus, now known as the “dark horse” for her performance of “Wicked Game” by Chris Isaak.
Surprising me was Katelyn Epperly and her bluesy voice. She has been shown with a guitar and keyboard, so I think there is more to her than meets the eye right now. I loved her “Oh Darlin” by the Beatles. Lilly Scott also chose an obscure Beatles song, “Fixin a Hole.” It was an interesting and quirky performance.
Of the rest, Didi Benami, Lacey Brown and Paige Miles (even though Simon said she had the best voice of the girls) were forgettable to me but the biggest disappointment was Ashley Rodriguez, who gave a poor imitation of Leona Lewis’ “Happy.” It was flat and unemotional in her delivery. I am biased, since I just saw Leona sing that song about two months ago in Orlando and she brought the house down. I think I expected more from Ashley as she is a student at the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston.
Two girls will be sent home on Thursday. I think it will be Janell Wheeler and Paige Miles.
Which two do you think are leaving? Please comment!
Make A Comment