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

American Idol, Feb. 16 – J-Lo’s Goosebumps for a Stellar Top 40

Jermaine and Richie are the only duo. They didn’t know each other before, but had a hard time forming a group. It’s unknown whether MIT refused to allow Richie in this time, or whether he refused to have them. Jermaine had similar problems, and it forced the two of them to pair up. HeeJun feels bad for Jermaine. They didn’t rehearse the song together until they got together with Byrd, and she tells them they have to learn the right melody. Yeah, that would help. Good advice there. It’s obvious why she makes the big bucks. Jermaine states the obvious that they are two very different people socially and personality-wise. Debra tries to help them out, and Richie is copping a ‘tude, saying he didn’t come there to recycle music; he came there to make it.

Jermaine Jones, 25, of Pine Hill, NJ, and Richie Law, 19, of Centennial, CO sing Make It Easy on Yourself, and these two really deep voices combine really interestingly. I couldn’t place the song, so went and listened to it on iTunes, and found they did a pretty accurate version of it, lower voices and all.

Randy calls the duo “Brothers Righteous,” tells Jermaine it was the right song, and Richie that he’s the country man with the tall long black hat with the long stroke. Jennifer admits it was so perfect, yet she wouldn’t have thought the pairing would work. She asks where would you see something like this other than American Idol. Steven asks whose idea it was to pair up, and they admit they were the last two. They’re both through. Jermaine has about had it, though with Richie hitting him.

Hallie Day, 24, a waitress from Baltimore, MD, shines as well, with Randy telling her she seemed more in her comfort zone. Baylie Brown, 21, a nanny from Krum, TX, and Chelsea Sorrell, 23, a caregiver from Storesdale, NC, also do well with all three getting passed through.

The last group up for the day are Jessica Sanchez, 16, from San Diego, CA, Deandre Brackensick, 17, from San Jose, and Candice Glober, 22, an administrative assistant from St. Helena Island, SC. They don’t think the song is in their style. Michael Orland suggests they update it, while still being respectful to the style of the song. Deandre has a terrific falsetto, and the two ladies have some powerful vocals. For a song they don’t think fit them, they managed to find a way to make it seem perfect.

After, Steven issues a “Praise the Lord!” This group definitely took it to church. Randy tells them they all blew it out. He asks Jessica, “Really?” They all got to show off what their voices could do, as Jennifer reminds them they were three very different voices coming together. Randy wants to deliberate, while Jennifer thinks they can make it easy. Steven agrees. “Oh man, are you so going through!” That applies to all three.

Everyone who performed and made it through this day are then brought back onstage. Randy gives them another word of caution, telling them that if they find the groups that perform the following day are better, they may make more cuts in this group at the end of the day. Some of them might not be completely safe. Suddenly the group is silent and not celebrating anymore.

On the way to Vegas, Adam Lee Decker, 28, a bartender from Durhan, NC spelled it out for us, “Vagas.” It’s a good thing he’s cute. He, and the others in his group, Clayton Farhat, 23, from Dallas, Scott Dangerfield, 23, from Milwaukee, and Curtis Gray, 28, a server from Spring Hill, FL, are singing Elvis’ Jailhouse Rock, taking the stage dressed in black leather, and walking out with an Army cadence.

Randy calls it defimitely fun and says they worked it out. Scott lost a little tempo, but he liked Clayton’s key change. He was impressed with Adam, and Curtis’ solo was cool, but the rest of it was a little sharp. Jennifer tells them when you have big voices like that, you have to know how to hold back a little sometimes. After the deliberations, Scott, Clayton, and Adam make it through, but Curtis is sent home. Man that’s tough at that point. Curtis encourages the others and they all exchange “I love yous.”

It’s more Elvis from Caleb Johnson, 20, a student/musician from Asheville, NC, and Joshua Sanders, 23, a music store clerk, from Kannapolis, NC, sing Burning Love. Steven likes Josh’s hair styled in the pompadour. The other two in the group are through as well, but we don’t see their names. Nevertheless they all make it through.

Another group with Curtis Finch Jr., 23, from St. Louis, and Joshua Ledet, 19, of Westlake, LA, sings Blue Suede Shoes. Steven knows this song isn’t normally in Curtis’ musical vocabulary, and Joshua only hears “Oh my God” from Randy and J-Lo. We don’t see the full info on Janet and Amber, yet Janet and Joshua are moving on, while Curtis and Amber are going home.

Instead of stressing out, one group, that includes Johnny Keyser, is just sitting in the hot tub chilling and swimming in the pool. Hopefullly that works out for them.

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