About LauraBelle

Freelance entertainment writer, martial arts instructor, and mother of two.

American Idol 9, Mar. 9 – Gap Widening Between Contestants


So far tonight we haven’t heard anything about a change in plans, so I assume it will go off without a hitch and the top eight girls will be singing. It’s an important week for them. If they make it through, they’ll be in the top 12. There are some that seem like they can coast this week and still make it, and others that seem like they’ll need a miracle, so it’ll be interesting to see how they work it out.

As Ryan Seacrest starts the show, Ellen DeGeneres is sitting on Simon Cowell’s lap making out with him. I imagine this is to beat down the talk of Kara DioGuardi getting too cozy with him. Ryan mentions the guys will be on tomorrow night, and as they pan over to them, Alex Lambert is yawning. A long week for him assumably. Simon thinks this is the worst week to get eliminated, as you’re so close. The stakes are the highest they’ve ever been.

Up first is Katie Stevens with Breakaway, and from the outset, she’s trying too hard to sound like Kelly, instead of making the song her own. Again, this isn’t about singing songs you like from the radio. If we wanted to hear this, we’d just put Kelly Clarkson on our iPods, and I have. Luckily for her she’s the youngest girl still there after Haeley Vaughn left, but this isn’t boding well for her.

Randy Jackson admits they say it a lot, the whole thing about taking songs that are too big for you. But Kelly is one of the greatest contestants they’ve ever had, and this is one of his favorite songs written today, and Katie’s performance paled in comparison, sounding karaoke, as Kelly is so good and so stylized. Ellen loves that Katie listened and did a younger song choice. She thinks it was the right choice, and Katie does have a great voice, but she’s young, so she didn’t feel her breaking away and taking a risk. It’s about personality, even though it’s a singing competition.

Kara tells Katie she has a great radio voice, but what’s going on this year is some people know themselves and some people don’t. She doesn’t think Haeley knows who she is yet, and that’s what we’re seeing week to week, her stumbling and trying to figure it out. She does have talent, and the sound of her voice is almost years older than her. She needs the experience, and she’ll get it, but the singing needed to be perfect and wasn’t. Simon thinks it’s been confusing for Katie, as she’s gotten a lot of advice, and to be fair, has taken the advice. She looks 100% better than a few weeks ago and chose a younger song, but she hasn’t worked out the type of artist she wants to be. To start again with her, he would have chosen a different type of song. She sucked the energy out of the song a bit, making it gloomy, but he gives her a 10 out of 10 for trying.

By the way, Katie’s mom looks like Lisa Kudrow. Maybe she turned up in Lisa’s search on Who Do You Think You Are. Katie mentions she was only 8 years old when Kelly won American Idol. She took a bigger song which Randy asked her to do and did a younger song like Ellen asked her to do. The song does mean a lot to her, as she does come from a small town and is trying to break away. It’s also the type of artist she wants to be. The problem is, Katie, Idol already has one Kelly Clarkson. You have to carve your own path.

Siobhan Mangus has chosen to sing House of the Rising Sun, because it’s a special surprise for her dad. She grew up listening to him sing the song and play it on the piano. He’s the first one to ever teach her about singing. Comparing them, she thinks he’s the best singer she has ever heard, yet he thinks she’s the best he’s heard. This has to sound good with that big ole voice of hers. She starts singing it a cappella and shows great restraint in not totally belting it out. As the music comes in, she picks it up a little more, but still isn’t belting it out. This has always been a favorite song of mine, and I can say without question, it’s the best I’ve heard it.

Randy tells Siobhan that she knows he’s already a fan, but he likes that she comes out every week surprising them. He loves what she does, because she takes every risk and every chance. They give her guidance, and she doesn’t listen, but that’s okay, as it’s hot, and she needs to keep doing it. Ellen notes she’s from New Orleans and knows that house. She tells Siobhan she is the reason she loves music, because it’s supposed to move you and do what Siobhan just did to her. She was captivating and made Ellen love that she made it current.

Kara loved the a cappella at the beginning and found it to be a brilliant choice. She likes that Siobhan is so so unique and different, and week to week she’s surprised. For someone who is an unlikely character on the show, she’s doing great. Simon wasn’t quite the fan of that, as he found the interview to what she’s wearing to the performance to be a little bit weird. She didn’t do anything different with the song, and he found her to be so much different last week. It was all a bit boring and dark.

Lacey Brown takes the stage singing The Story, and she really needs to show us who she is and what she can do, and do it well. I think she has the perfect voice for this song and seems to have finally have gotten more comfortable. Although her voice is going to need a specific genre every week, yet this is the most I’ve liked her, and much of that comes from her comfortability.

Randy tells Lacey that what’s cool about this is while the song is a little boring and sleepy, it’s her best performance for him in a long time. She gets big ole props and congrats on that. He forgot she had that break in her voice with the falsetto, but it was cool. Ellen agrees that it’s Lacey’s best performance to date, and it almost sound like it was written for her. She has such a distinctive voice.


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