Ryan Seacrest opened Thursday’s results show on “American Idol” with the announcement that 250 million song downloads from “Idol” performances were done in its decade stretch on American screens, and to celebrate the success, the commemorative 10th anniversary CD was gifted to the audience, as the dozen remaining performers could only hope for the gift of grace in the voting! Joining in a Lady Gaga meets glory days of heavy metal with a medley of “Born This Way” and “Born to Be Wild”, they set the tone in for the holiday vote in spirited fashion, before those endless silences in waiting for the votes began.
Jacob Lusk, Lauren Alaina, and Casey Abrams faced the music first, and all were free to do the Safety Dance, and return to those comfy couch cushions. Next came Haley Reinhart and Paul McDonald, both of whom were under the weather on Wednesday, but still held their own. Paul is safe, but Haley was sentenced to the wait on the stools.
Last season’s “Idol”, Lee DeWyze dropped in to perform his song “Beautiful Like You” from his Live It Up CD, which has yet to light up the charts, but the former paint salesman us finding his way as a performer, and finding an audience, too. He reminded the hopefuls to always remember the reason they tried out in the first place, and that is very grounded wisdom, because whatever the level of success, to be able to earn a living through one’s gifts and passion is a blessing.
Another trio got good news, as Scott McCreery, Pia Toscano, and James Durbin all were safely seated on the sofas. Stefano Langone and Naima Adedapo were called up, and Naima stated it was “all about love” despite singing “What’s Love Got to Do with It?” last night! Stefano was rewarded for his sparkling performance with a safe vote, while Naima went to join Haley and ponder her love-hate relationship with the “pitchy” word some more! Karen Rodriguez and Thia Megia were last to face the silence, and it was Karen was to complete the stool seated set.
The Black-eyed Peas popped in to debut their “Just Can’t Get Enough” song, and while I realize they are a hugely popular, hugely selling group these days, the Autotune overload of the song drove me insane, and made me realize further that popularity does not measure with artistry. I remember the first albums from them, with songs with themes, sans the necessity of remix, not that many years ago.
Ryan Seacrest relieved the pressure for Naima, sending her to safety for another week. Karen and Haley stood for the final vote, and it was Karen who had to sing for the hope of a save. She reprised her performance of “Hero” in a strong effort, and it truly seemed the judges’ panel was in heavy deliberation, but no save was to come. The judges joined in Karen’s farewell onstage, reminding her that this was a new beginning, not an end, for her future.
Which of the 11 will be elevated next week? Tune in and see at 8 PM ET on FOX.
“American Idol” telecast, March 17, 2011 FOX TV.