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

American Idol 10, April 6 – Either You Get It or You Don't


James Durbin is singing While My Guitar Gently Weeps by George Harrison, as he thinks it’s unexpected. will.i.am was expecting the danger, and feels if James does that song, no matter how great it is, it’ll bring the energy of the audience down. Jimmy compares it to While My Guitar Gently Sinks. James still feels it’s a perfect time to take a chance. I do like him slowing it down like this, but what I miss is that patented James Durbin range. Apparently from this song George Harrison has no range. Ah, there it is at the end. James wipes away his tears, and it’s so good to see him connect at the end.

Jennifer liked seeing that side of James, as they’re used to seeing him running around all the time. It’s what makes that other side of him really work. That and that pain that lives so deeply insie of him is so special to watch. What Randy really loved was seeing that true emotional side of James, seeing him enngage and emotionally connect. You have to take chances in order to be an artist. Steven tells James it’s good to see not only his guitar gently weep, but him as well. It was a really proud moment for him. Ryan, looking up at James, asks what he was feeling. He recalls it was his family. He’s worked on the song for five years, as it shows his struggles.

Scotty McCreery is singing That’s Alright Mama by Elvis. He was a huge fan as a kid, so this seems fitting. will.i.am can’t make a cool word for this one. It’s just country rock. He tells him to figure out how to put these two things together. Scotty thinks he’s looking for him to bring and edge to it. It won’t be country Scotty, but Scotty with a rock feel. He brings a sly smile out of me with this song. His attitutde is contagious. A bunch of girls run up afterwards and molest him on the stage. An obvoius setup, but still fun.

Randy pronounces Scotty in it to win it. Anybody that thought he was a one-trick pony, will see he can perform. It was amazing, like a new scotty. We’ve never seen this side. Steven agrees, saying he thought it was all hat and no cattle, but he rode Elvis into the house. He heard girls screaming in the audience, and he hopes that old nostalgia comes back. Jennifer agrees with the guys, and says he’s funny, and entertainment should be. Jennifer asks him if he watches rap or hip hop, as she feels a little bit of flavor in it. He tells her it’s the Puerto Rican blood in him.

Pia Toscano is singing River Deep Mountain High, doing the uptempo finally. Jimmy talks about Tina Turner being so out of her mind when she sings it, and will.i.am advises her not to do it like Madonna singing Tina Turner, but turn that personality on and wow everyone. Pia can’t wait to show that other side of her. Jimmy wants her to get pissed off and shut everyone else up. She gets more screamy with it and shows she does ballads because she’s better at them than uptempo. By the end of the song she finds her comfort with it.

Steven calls Pia a murdereer and tells her she killed it. He wants her to know there’s a million guys in a million bars having a million drinks about her tonight. Jennifer thought it was amazing and proved to eveyrone she could sing uptempo. She’s going to keep pushing her, as when you see greatness, it needs to be pushed more. Michael Jackson studied others, and that helped form his style. Steven thinks Pia needs to do that as well. Randy and everyone believe in her, but what she showed was the Mariahs and Whitneys had uptempo hits as well. All she needs to do now is work on the movement.

Stefano Langone is singing When a Man Loves a Woman. He enjoyed working with Jimmy and will.i.am, as they showed him another perspective of the song and how it was delivered. will.ia.am tells him to get in front of the song and be in control if it, to the point of stopping in the middle of it. Stefano can see where he wants him to go with it. He’s back to closing his eyes tonight, but he’s nailing the song along the way.

Jennifer tells Stefano she knew he had it in him. It was beautiful. She felt for the first time it had another layer of emotion to it where it felt like he was singing to and about somebody. Randy liked it too, and while the first part seemed a little jerky to him, it’s what will.i.am was trying to say, to take his time with something before he jumps in with the R&B stuff. Sometimes it doesn’t need to counterpunch, just to marinate and to that at the end. Steven liked the old-timey part and thinks he has a great range. He wants him to keep playing it.

Paul McDonald is singing Folsom Prison Blues. He’s just going through the song nicely in front of Jimmy and will.i.am, then is advised to sing it like he’s doing a concert. He totally lays it out there. Jimmy doesn’t think there’s anyone cooler than Johnny Cash, and with such a passionate, push-the-boundaries guy, he has to go there. He offers to tone it down, and they thinks he’s nuts. This is what Randy was getting at last week, wanting him to let it out. He takes unique and puts a little crazy in with it. It’s fun. I dont hink he’ll be bottom three this week.

Rrandy has three worlds for Paul. “I loved it.” Steven calls him a crazy character, a perfect imperfect boy. He loved it as he rocked the house. Jennifer calls it a perfect way to end the show, in his lane. Ryan starts dancing crazy with him, and after a quick recap of all the numbers, they go back to the stage, and now everyone is dancing crazy and letting loose. Well, all but Pia. She’s dancing, but staying refined.

I’m going out on a limb here and predicting the bottom three will be Lauren, Pia, and Stefano. Jacob might end up there as well, because of his comment telling people how they should feel about his performance. I’m probably alone on that limb predicting it, but I know I’m not on the limb as far as who belongs there. At this point in the season, either you get it or you don’t, and Stefano and Pia don’t. Lauren does, but just when she was showing she did, she went and sang what is known by fans to be a Kelly Clarkson song. It could hurt her.

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