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“American Idol XIII”: Auditions Redux

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If the previous weeks on Idol have shown, anyone (early frontrunner or not) could go home!

After saying goodbye to Majesty Rose last week, it was up to Malaya Watson, Jena Irene and Jessica Meuse from stopping this losing streak.

Were they able to prove themselves worthy to keep the Idol crown and stash with the ladies? Or did Caleb Johnson, C.J. Harris, Sam Wolff, Alex Preston or Dexter Roberts continue to cement their own path to Idol victory? Read on to find out….

Jessica Meuse performed her original song, “Blue Eyed Lie,” on the American Idol stage. This is the Jessica I have been waiting to see for weeks. I loved hearing her powerhouse vocals and her eyes pierced the audience. I hope the Idol’s PTB let her perform some of originals in the upcoming weeks. It was a great start to the show! B+

C.J. Harris has been on a downward track in the past couple weeks. When the show first met him back in Salt Lake City, he had a huge problem connecting with the song. I am so glad that C.J. bounced back with his cover of the Allman Brothers’ “Soul Shine.” It was so heartfelt and I hope he does not fall off the wagon again. B

The first duet of the night belonged to Jena Irene and Alex Preston. Their cover of P!nk & Nate Reuss’s “Just Give Me a Reason” was average. It seemed more of a Battle Round than a duet. Jena just slayed with her vocals and left Alex in the dust! In addition, Alex’s outfit distracted me and his vocals were very sharp. (Jena: A-/Alex: C)

Viewers first met heartbreaker Sam Wolff back in Beantown, while he put his head down throughout his audition. His stage presence has improved…but like C.J., his vocal performance went down the toilet. It seemed that he had problems with his pitch and the guitar during the first few bars of Ed Sheeran’s “Lego House.” He needs to go this week. D+

Over the past few years, Idol has delivered impeccable duets…From Adam Lambert and Allison Iraheta’s “Slow Ride” to Joshua Ledet & Jessica Sanchez’s “I Knew You Were Waiting For Me,” they continue to set the standard for other contestants. For Jessica and Caleb, they slayed “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around” and it gave me chills! Great job, guys! (Caleb & Jessica: A)

I was very worried about Malaya tonight. At her Detroit audition, she tackled the monstrous song known as “Ain’t No Way.” While there were Malaya’s pitch issues that were sprinkled throughout the performance, I think fans would be excited to some growth from her. However, I hope after the show…she has a chance to watch Sisaundra Lewis’s Blind Audition to see how to improve her tone and stage presence. C+

There is something about Dexter Roberts that I do not like. He seems very humble and honest. However, his vocals and delivery have been subpar in past weeks. Tonight, I think he delivered a solid performance with Brett Eldridge’s “One Mississippi.” It was definitely the surprise of the night. B+

When I watched Sam and Malaya sing “Lucky” by Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillet, it was like watching a train wreck. The vocals were all over the place and I think the Dawg should have worked with both Sam and Malaya on vocal harmonies. D-

There is a part of me that wants PB and the Idol crew to hand the trophy to Jena Irene. Her unique twist on Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” showcased excellent vocal runs and outstanding conviction… that made it a master vocal class performance. I hope she makes all the way to the finale. A

At this point, I tuned out to the C.J. and Dexter duet! I think Darius Rucker’s ears would have bleed from listening to the country singers’ version of “Alright.” There were pitch issues galore and I desperately wanted Nicki Minaj to come up and state: “Get off the stage!” F

For three seasons, Caleb Johnson has been trying to get that title. So far, this season…he could the one receiving the confetti shower at the Nokia Theatre in L.A. Live. His soul rock cover of the Queen of Soul’s signature song took everyone to the Church of Rock and Roll! That was the best performance of the night!!!! A+

Alex Preston closed the show with his original song: “Fairy Tales.” Like Jessica, Alex was definitely in his element! He looked very invested with his performance and in turn, he kept the audience (in the Idol Dome and at home) at attention. Overall, Alex could be one of the artists that will be in this season’s Final Three. A-

Tomorrow night, Daughtry performs & someone might go home!

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