Tonight’s episode of American Idol was the very last Las Vegas episode of the season. The top 10 guys took to the stage to fight their way into the overall top 10.
Elijah Liu opened the show with Rihanna’s “Stay.” Keith thought it suited his voice well and showed good control. Nicki said she would be willing to stay, and he is very marketable. Randy liked it more than last week, but he never thought it got out of first gear. Mariah really liked the song choice and thought it was one of his best performances.
Cortez Shaw sang Bruno Mars’ “Locked Out Of Heaven.” Keith loved the song and his spirit, but he wasn’t sure that was the best song for him and what he does. Nicki wanted to see Cortez styled better, and she thought he was straining at times. Randy agreed, he kind of liked the song, and he knew where he was going, but he didn’t know if Cortez knew. Mariah liked the up-tempo song and hoped people watching saw his previous performances.
Charlie Askew sported a feather earring and a tank top and sang “Mama,” by Genesis. Keith wondered what the people at home were thinking and complimented Charlie on his range. He saw him singing more with a band and felt tonight’s performance was disconnected. Nicki wondered where her little baby was – she didn’t want to see the arms, the earring, or the ponytail and wanted her cute Charlie back. Randy wasn’t upset, but he was worried. He thought the beginning was terrible, but he was screaming by the end. Mariah said Charlie had already gotten an earful, she enjoys him as a person, and it was up to America.
Nick Boddington sat at the piano for his rendition of the Goo Goo Dolls’ “Iris.” Keith thought that was the perfect song, and he loved that he played the piano and sang. Nicki wanted him to keep the melody, but the performance was in his comfort zone. Randy didn’t think it was his strongest performance and was happy to see him go back to himself instead of trying to be someone else. Mariah thought Nick really kicked in at the end and hoped people would take the time to look at his other performances when voting.
Burnell Taylor sang “I’m Here,” from The Color Purple, which he sang during his very first audition. Keith gave him a standing ovation and said he has an instantly recognizable voice. He loved it. Nicki asked what he did differently, and Burnell said he wanted everyone to hear the song in its entirety, since his audition had been chopped up. She added that he was born to do this and has an undeniable struggle and pain in his voice. Randy loved that Burnell grabbed everyone’s attention from the moment he started singing. Mariah was proud and so happy he chose to do the same song again.
Paul Jolley was up next, with Christina Aguilera and Blake Shelton’s “Just A Fool.” Keith asked what Paul saw himself as if he became an artist. Paul basically said he wanted to be the male version of Taylor Swift. Keith thought he could ease it in a little more and is underestimating the quality of his voice. Nicki told Keith it was an interesting comment and asked if he thought it was believable. She thought it was a solid performance and told Paul to take Keith’s critique seriously. Randy thought it started out well, but he changed his tone during the middle and end. Mariah hadn’t realized he wanted to do pop country and agreed with Jimmy Iovine’s comments from last week when he chose to keep Paul. She also told Paul to listen to Keith.
Lazaro Arbos sang “Feeling Good.” Keith said everyone in the theater connected with him when he started singing. Nicki loved it and thought it was a very strong vocal. Randy said he is in it to win it and loves when he hits his sweet spot. Mariah thought some of the song was too low, but at other times, he hit it dead on, if she was going to critique anything.
Curtis Finch, Jr. took on “I Believe I Can Fly.” Keith said he believed he could fly, and Curtis has so much hope in him. Nicki told Curtis he raises the bar every single time, and what he has is something that can’t be measured. Randy thought the competition started right there. Mariah said that was just what she needed and thanked him for the positive energy.
Devin Velez stayed true and sang part of his song, “It’s Impossible,” in Spanish. Keith said it was really good, and he liked a run in the middle. Nicki tried to critique in Spanish and gave up after a few words, congratulated him, and compared him to a little Spanish Ken doll. Randy loves Devin and thought it was effortless. Mariah thought the performance was incredible.
Vincent Powell closed out the show with Boys II Men’s “End of the Road.” Keith thought nerves got on top of his talent and hoped America would put him through. Nicki loved the song choice, but she didn’t think it really helped his voice. Randy didn’t think it was Vincent’s best performance, but it was still good. Mariah agreed and said there were moments of brilliance in the performance.
Tune into American Idol tomorrow night on FOX at 8/7 p.m. central to see who will officially make it into this season’s top 10…or 12…or 13…whatever number they decide to end up going with this year. What was your favorite performance tonight? Who do you think will make it through or go home Thursday night? Leave a comment below!