‘American Idol’: Hometown Faves of the Judges With a Touch of Soul

American Idol

Tonight on American Idol, the Top Five musical artists remaining chose the first songs that they sang based on the hometowns of each of the judges, and the second songs based on songs that touched their souls. With the season getting down to the wire, the musical artists strove to give the performances of their lifetimes, and get enough votes from the viewers of America to stay in the competition.

At the start of the show, the five remaining artists were flown in record producer, Scott Borchetta’s private jet, to Big Machine Recording Group in Nashville. They got the chance to check out the label that one of them might land a recording contract with.

American Idol host, Ryan Seacrest, began the episode by introducing the three judges. He said “Our star-studded finale is two weeks from now!” Seacrest then introduced the five remaining musical artists and asked them if they “were ready for tonight.” He added that someone would be going home tonight, and that the competitors will be singing songs based on the hometowns of the judges, and then one based on what touches their souls.

Ryan Seacrest had the envelope brought out with the results. Actor Russell Crowe walked onto the stage with them. He said he had ridden his bicycle there.

Clark Beckham was the first performer declared safe. He met with a team of people who were there to help him mold the image he would be portraying, if he won. Beckham sang the song Living for the City. He WAILED on it, making the song his OWN. Then, he took to the piano and jazzed it up a bit, and a chorus of singers behind him also sang. He hit and sustained an impressively high note towards the end of the song.

Keith said “You’re a powerhouse singer. I loved when you played the piano.”

Jennifer said “I thought you did a really good job, too. Everything you choose gets the audience going. It was a really good start to the show.”

Harry told him “I thought it was a solid performance. I was glad to see you sing without the piano. You need to sink into the pocket, the groove. We’re nitpicking, now.”

Ryan said that “the next person to get the green light is…” The person was Jax, 18. She met up with people that might represent her and help get the right sort of songs to her to sing. She sang the Alicia Keys song Empire State of Mind. Jax sounded INCREDIBLE! She had the audience clapping along as she sang, and her voice sounded terrific!

Jennifer said “Here’s the good news — I think that you really mean business, but was this the best song? I don’t know.”

Harry said “Was you voice hoarse? You just sang through it, and nobody cared, and it was great.”

Keith said “I thought it was a great song choice and your talent just powered through.”

“Next person in the green chair after the nation wide vote will be…” The musical artist that sang next was Nick Fradiani. The song that he performed was Bright Lights. Nick give an exhilarating, AMAZING performance, really getting the audience and the judges into it. Jennifer was bobbing her head along as Nick sang.

Harry told him “I was glad to hear you sing a Matchbox 20 song. It was great.”

Jennifer agreed, as did Keith. Jennifer said “You’re peaking! That was a great song choice.”

After another commercial break, host Ryan Seacrest was sitting in Harry’s chair. He introduced Harry Connick Jr., playing the piano and singing one of his own songs, City Beneath the Sea. Harry sang deep, deep in the pocket, and the studio audience applauded enthusiastically as he finished singing.

Then, American Idol headed to another commercial break, and when it returned, host Ryan Seacrest announced that the Bottom Two vote-getters were Tyanna Jones and Rayvon Owen. Rayvon edged out Tyanna Jones and will be moving on. Tyanna gave some remarkable and memorable musical performances this season, and she will be missed.

American Idol host, Ryan Seacrest, then introduced a video of some of Tyanna’s performances that were highlights of this season. After that, she sang the song Run the World (Girls), by Beyonce, and she NAILED it.

Harry said that she was “incredible” and “spectacular.” Jennifer added “You have a long career ahead of you.”

Following another break, Rayvon Owen got his opportunity to meet with Scott and others from Big Machine Records. Then, he took the American Idol stage and sang Need You Now. Rayvon gave an emotional, heart-felt performance of this song. The audience cheered and applauded wildly as he finished singing it.

Martina McBride then sang the iconic classic, Somewhere Over the Rainbow, on American Idol. She gave an incredible performance of it, and held the audience spellbound.

Clark Beckham’s turn was next and he chose to sing Your Man. He gave a fantastic performance of it, and the audience seemed to really get into the song, as well, but the judges were not as enthusiastic. Jennifer did not appear convinced that it came from his heart, that he sang it with enough emotion. She told him “I think the argument is, is that the type of song for American Idol?”

Clark said he did not regret singing the song. Harry told him he should sing it “more sexily, then — sing it to J-Lo, man!”

Beckham said “I think that America really likes the kind of music I sing.”

Keith said “Don’t confuse people liking you with liking the music you’re playing.”

More commercials ensued, then Jax took the stage on American Idol. She will be singing Human. Martina McBride gave her some great advice, and then…Jax gave one of her best performances yet of the season on American Idol. She KILLED this song, singing it as fog swirled on the stage. She packed a lot of emotion into her performance, and the audience gave her a standing ovation.

Harry said “This is a perfect example of the technical versus the emotional. You let yourself go, and ultimately, that trumps everything.”

Keith said “You KILLED it, Jax! It was really, really good!

Jennifer said “Your tone was so great!”

Record producer, Scott Borchetta, took the musical artists to Blackbird Studios in Nashville to tour it. Steven Tyler of Aerosmith was there, recording a country album, and the competitors got to meet him. Jax said that Steve Tyler asked to sing with her at the finale.

Back from another break, American Idol host Ryan Seacrest introduced Rayvon, once again. For the song that touches his soul, he will be singing a Justin Bieber song, Believe, and he said he was dedicating it to his mom.

Rayvon touched everybody in the studio audience, and many of his fans across America, with his emotional version of Believe. As Scott told him, if he sang it like he was in front of him, Rayvon would not be in the Bottom Two next week.

Keith said “You sang phenomenally just then! It was beautiful, Rayvon!”

Jennifer said “You have to do that every single time, Rayvon! I was crying!”

Harry told him “I think that every single one of the 15 or so people who wrote that song would be glad to hear you sing it.”

Rayvon’s mom came onto the stage and gave her son a big hug. Then, American Idol went to yet more commercials.

Then, it was time for Nick Fradiani to sing a song that really touched his soul. He chose to sing the Rascal Flatts song, What Hurts the Most. He sang a passionate, emotional version of the song, and the audience cheered and screamed for him as he finished singing.

Jennifer said “For me, you’re the star of the night. That was really, really great.”

Harry said “I’d love to hear that on your album.”

Keith said that his version would go to the top of the iTunes chart. That could very well be, though all of the Top Four musical artists gave terrific performances tonight.

On American Idol tonight, the Top Five musical artists became the Top Four, and they sang two songs each, the first one being a song that had something to do with the hometown of one of the judges. The second song that the competitors sang was a song that, in some way, touched their souls and meant something important to them. Sadly, Tyanna Jones was eliminated from the season, but she gave a wonderful and classy performance of Beyonce’s hit, Run the World (Girls).

Written By Douglas Cobb

Sources:
American Idol.com
American Idol Net.com

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