March 16, 2011 07:43 PM by Lisa Princ
American Idol on FOX is back tonight after Ashton Jones was eliminated last week and the top 12 will take the stage to perform songs from the year that they were born. On a night with very few bad performances, just who rocked the stage tonight and who had us bored to tears? Keep reading for all the exciting details of tonight’s episode!
American Idol on FOX is back tonight with the top twelve performances. But before they take the stage, Ryan Seacrest announces that all of the songs from tonight’s show will be available on iTunes after the show with the proceeds going to The Red Cross for Japan’s earthquake victims. Then it was straight to the performances – what did your favorite perform and how did they do? Read on to see how your favorites fared this and then be sure to vote, vote vote!
Naima was first up tonight with “What’s love got to do with it?” by Tina Turner from 1984. As we learned that Naima grew up in a family surrounded with music, she broke down about having to be away from her children. Her performance was good and she looked like a rock star but her vocals were not at their best this week. Steven asked her why she was wearing his shirt while Randy told her although she looked hot her vocals were all over the place and her pitch was off. Jennifer loved that she brought her own style into everything she does, but also commented on her pitch and told her she needs to work on it.
Born in 1984 also, Paul chose to perform “I guess that’s why they call it the blues” by Elton John but not before throwing some digs at his dad, who claims Paul got his talent from him as he performed in a 7th grade band. Paul brought his his own spin to the tune and once again had the crowd going with him, this guy is definitely a keeper. The judges noticed his pitchiness however as Randy told him he would not give him a pass for the cold he was suffering from but he loved how he makes whatever he sings his own. Steven agreed and Jennifer told Paul that he sounded good and gushed about how much soul and star quality he has.
Our youngest performer was up next with her 1995 song “Colors of the wind” by Vanessa Williams. Thia looked elegant and her voice is so beautiful but the song and performance fell flat and was a tad bit boring for me. The judges seemed to be in agreement as well with Randy calling her vocals ok, but he found it boring and pageant like with nothing special. After an array of boo’s from the crowd, Jennifer told Thia she loved her voice while Steven asked her if that song was who she thinks she is to which Thia commented that she thought the song fit.
American Idol’s resident rocker was up next and being born in 1989 gave him the opportunity to sing “I’ll be there for you” by Bon Jovi but not before we heard his mom gush about him having the perfect pitch as a toddler, to which James disagreed. James had the crowd going with him as well in this unique and powerful performance – as usual he rocked the stage. Steven asked him not to get too “poppy” on him and then later when asked if he would perform on the show, Steven replied by saying James had a rich vain of inner crazy and he would be glad to join him – whatever that means! Both Randy and Jennifer loved him as well, although Randy did point out a few pitch issues with this performance.
Haley was next with “I’m your baby tonight” by Whitney Houston from her birth year of 1990. Haley stated she got her gift from her parents who still sing in a band and then said she was doing this all for them. For me, her version sounded odd and unlike her, but she looked beautiful if that counts! Randy told her it was not a great performance and that she had him confused as to who she was trying to be. Steven called it sweet and tough and then told her to sing more blues while Jennifer was certain that Haley was still unsure of her movements and told her not to force anything.
After giving us the lowdown on his Italian family, Stefano joked that being born in 1989 gave him such a great amount of song choices such as Milli Vanilla, New Kids On The Block and Vanilla Ice that he finally found a great song in “If you don’t know me by now” by Simply Red and wow what a choice it was for him. Stefano for the first time this season has risen above everyone else and blew this one out of the water. The judges loved him and Randy deemed his performance the best one of the night since he took a difficult song and slayed it. Steven called it wonderful and over the top while Jennifer told him she loved it and that he could take the entire competition if he stayed right there with his performances.
Pia was up next on American Idol and took us for a trip down memory lane to 1988 as she reminisced about her grandfather and how he is her inspiration. She performed “Where do broken hearts go?” by Whitney Houston and as usual she nailed it and put her own twist on it. Randy claimed that she was in it to win it while Steven told her she nailed it and was over the top. Jennifer was thrilled to hear that she did something up tempo and we watched as Jennifer sang along during the performance.
Next it was time for some country as Scotty was up and born in 1993 he mother boasted about what a chubby baby he was and how much he loved Elvis as a kid. Scotty decided to perform Travis Tritt’s “Can I trust you with my heart” and once again he was perfect and is showing what a true star he is – I have never even heard this song and I love it now. The audience loved him as well as they were on their feet and so did the judges. Randy told Scotty that he did Travis proud and again told him that he loves that he knows who he is. Jennifer loved how he pushed it out at the end and wants more of that while Steven told him to keep it up and he’ll be going places.
After her poor performance last week Karen was back with 1989 hit “Love will lead you back” by Taylor Dane but not until her mom told a story about putting a radio on her stomach while she was pregnant and how she always wanted to be a singer so now Karen was living her dream out. It was definitely better than last week, but I am growing old of her “twist” being a few lyrics in Spanish and I think she needs to do something different. Randy liked it better than last week while Steven loved the Spanish. Jennifer noticed she looked a little scared but loved how Karen attacked it.
Casey after recovering from his hospital visit was back to perform tonight and he took a risk with a band never sung on American Idol before. Casey chose 1991 Nirvana hit “Smells like teen spirit” after he told how his parents had him in their 40′s and joked that he would have his children in his 60′s. His performance was great, very entertaining and he almost looked scary at one point but it rocked the house, leaving the crowd cheering more than they had all night. Steven called him so good, so crazy and so talented and then went on to say that was the goop that great stuff is made of and Casey got it. Jennifer liked it but would have preferred less screechy in some of the notes while Randy was impressed with the fearless risks that Casey takes.
Born in 1994, Lauren’s parents told us how she was always singing, even to strangers. Lauren chose to sing “I’m the only one” by Melissa Etheridge and we got to hear some of her strong voice again, but she was also suffering from some sort of cold. Randy said that was very nice and told Lauren she’s back. Steven told her that he loved her the first time he heard her and she did it again while Jennifer was happy to hear her strong voice despite being sick and loved that she put a country twist on it.
Last for the evening but definitely not least was Jacob Lusk, who was shown debating with his mom about her singing – she claims to sing well and he does not agree. Jacob, born in 1987 chose the hit “Alone” by Heart and I have to say I was surprised and excited to hear him perform this and it was definitely worth the wait. Jacob put his own spin on it and gave me chills listening to it, it was sweet yet powerful. The judges loved it as Randy called it a tough one for him and said it was genius. Steven giggled that Gospel had a baby and named it Jacob Lusk while Jennifer loved how Jacob gives himself into every performance and that we can all feel it.
Now, don’t forget to vote, vote, vote and then be sure to tune in tomorrow at 8 pm EST to find out who will be eliminated!
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Photo Credit: FOX