Tonight on Rising Star on ABC, it is Finals Night! The field of competitors has been narrowed down to just four, Jeese Kinch, Austin French, Dana Williams and — thanks to a West Coast save — Audrey Kate Geiger. Each of the four will perform for the final time this season and, by the end of the show, one of the four will be crowned this season’s Rising Star!
Rising Star opened up with Brad Paisley, one of the panel of three Experts, performing one of his hit songs in front of a packed house. The audience clapped their hands enthusiastically and stood all during the song. Then, Austin French, Jesse Kinch, Dana Williams and Audrey Kate Geiger also joined in singing with him. It was a pretty cool opening number, with Paisley showing off his skills on the electric guitar as well as his great singing.
“Give it up for Brad Paisley and your Top Four!” host Josh Groban said.
Then, we saw footage of the Top Four talking about the dreams that each had of becoming the next Rising Star. They will either “take it home, or go home,” in the words of the finalists at the start of the episode of Rising Star.
“Only four artists remain! One of these artists is about to land a recording contract with Capital Records!” Josh said. Then, he introduced the panel of three Experts, Ludacris, Kesha and Brad Paisley. Tonight, the votes of the Experts will just count the same as the votes of anyone else in America.
“We seeded each of the four artists based on how they’ve done on both the East Coast and the West Coast,” Josh stated. Before Rising Star went to a commercial break, he added that the competitors would first go head-to-head based on the seeding, and that Jesse Kinch and Dana Williams would be the first pair to duel each other.
Back from the break, Rising Star on ABC had the first duel of the evening. “Tonight’s finalists tossed a coin to determine who would be going first,” Josh said. In the first head-to-head duel, Dana Williams will be singing first.
“Dana needs to feel like a million bucks going into tonight,” Kesha said to the camera. Kesha gave her advice and helped her pick out the dress that she will be wearing, a pretty red one. The song that she will be singing is At Last by the great Etta James.
Dana did a tremendous job singing this classic song. She has a beautiful voice and had the crowd into the song right from the beginning, but will she do good enough to beat Jesse kinch? She only got the votes of 30 percent of America.
Jesse Kinch was next up. He needs to get above 30 percent to move on. “It really comes down to the music, it comes down to the songs,” Brad Paisley said. He added “I don’t see this as the last performances for any of you. I see it as the beginning of your careers.”
Jesse Kinch sang Fortunate Son, WAILING on it. He ROCKED the song OUT! He easily beat the 30 percent mark and went on The numbers kept climbing as America’s votes poured in. He eventually ended up with 87 percent of America’s votes!
“Alright! The audience has spoken!” Josh said.
Kesha said that she loved Dana, but that Jesse “slaughtered my face.”
Brad said to Dana “I can’t wait to hear the album you make. “
Ludacris said “This is what the other singing shows should be like.”
Dana thanked each of the Experts, especially Kesha. She thanked Kesha “for showing me the ropes.” The next head-to-head duel will be Audrey Kate Geiger and Austin French. First, there is another commercial break to wait through, though.
“Austin French versus Audrey Kate Geiger — this duel starts right now!” Josh said after the break. Austin French won the coin toss and will be going first. Austin said that his fan base are called “the French Fries.”
Austin French will be performing the song In Love With a Girl. He had the audience clapping right from the start as he sang and he walked about the stage, showing great stage presence, acting as if he was singing to all the women there. The votes kept climbing, but not quite as fast as with Jesse. He got 70 percent of America’s votes. If Audrey Kate Geiger gets over 70 percent, she will raise the Wall and beat Austin.
Ludacris brought Audrey Kate Geiger to his house. “I think you were born for this. I think that you could win this,” Ludacris tells her.
“I am experiencing this sanctuary of his. I think I could win this,” she said.
Audrey Kate Geiger will be singing Love Me Like a Man. She sings very sultrily and smokily, KILLING this song. Of course, Ludacris voted for her. Still, Audrey just managed to get 49 percent of america’s votes.
“What a great run!” Josh said.
Ludacris said “I love the way she fought for every point!” He stood up and walked over to give her a hug.
“All along, I think you’ve been my favorite voice. I want to hear the album you make,” Brad Paisley said.
“Austin, congratulations! You’re moving on to the head-to-head battle against Jesse Kinch!” Josh tells Ausitn. Then, he has both Austin and Jesse stand side-by-side, telling them that “the game is about to change. For the first time ever, you will not see the bar with the votes on it. The votes won’t be revealed until the end. This coin has both of your faces on it. If it lands with your face showing, you can decide if you want to perform first of second.”
The coin landed showing Austin’s face. Austin said “I want to perform second.” After yet more commercials, Rising Star on ABC will return with Jesse Kinch singing the last time he will be singing on Rising Star. He and Austin are friends and have been relatively evenly matched; can Jesse manage to defeat Austin, or will French pull off the win?
“America, the power is in your hands!” Jsoh said after the break. Then, we got to see scenes of Jesse during the season. “I’ve come to far to seeing it all go to waste,” he said.
Jess Kinch sang a song by The Who, Love O’er Me. He ROCKS THE CRAP out of this song! Brad Paisley clapped as he sang. Jesse Kinch called on his Inner Roger Daltry (The Who’s lead singer) to KNOCK THIS SONG OUT OF THE PARK!
Next, Austin French sang his final performance of the season. “No matter what happens, I’ll always be by your side!” said his wife.
Austin French sang the Rascal Flatts song Bless the Broken Road. He did a fantastic job singing this song, but it will be very difficult to beat the killer performance that Jesse Kinch gave.
“Alright! Austin French, everybody! Your votes have been cast, America! Your votes will be revealed when Rising Star comes back on ABC!” Josh Groban said, then Rising Star went to another commercial break.
“Welcome back to the Rising Star finale! This is it, America! I have the voting results in my hand!” Josh asked the Experts who they think that the winner will be. None of the Experts wanted to come right out and say that one or the other would probably be the winner. The scores were 76 percent to 61 percent. The winner of Rising Star is — Jesse Kinch!” Josh Groban said.
The three Experts all stood up and applauded. Jesse put both of his thumbs up and he came up onto the stage and thanked the experts and everybody who voted for him. Confetti fell from the ceiling as the show concluded, and we were treated to Jesse singing I Put a Spell On You from earlier in the season during his audition.
Tonight was the final night of Rising Star for this season. There were a lot of great performances and awesome competitors who entertained America, but now, the first season has drawn to an end with Jesse Kinch’s victory over Austin French. Each of the Top Four on Rising Star on ABC will likely move on and get record deals, though Jesse Kinch won his with Capital Records tonight. Congratulations to all of the Top Four!
Written By Douglas Cobb