Tonight we enter the Hollywood Week episodes! This is like my Idol Christmas – I look forward to Hollywood Week every year. While you are watching throughout these episodes, which are sure to be both awful and awesome, keep an eye out for these contestants in my “Twelve Ones to Watch” list (in no particular order).
Syrup and Honey by Duffy
She auditioned last year and had a famous rockin’ performance with Ms. Jessica Sanchez and Deandre where they all Rocked. It. Out. Remember? Well, she’s back, and she is a major contender. This time around she sang a Duffy number and sounded phenomenal. Nicki said she wanted to skin her and wear her–they should just advance her to the voting rounds right now, to save her from Nicki’s prowling ways.
Pinocchio and Original Music
I admit it, I was fooled by the Idol producers. Fire twirling and combat boots does normally not precede a good audition, but that does not apply here. She is a little bit of a strange one, but is amazingly awesome. And she gets props for complaining to Seacrest about having to fill out paperwork. Her authenticity cracks me up!
God is Able by Smokey Norville
Idol is always in need of the requisite male gospel singer, and Curtis is one of my favorites this season. Most of the time these guys are so inside the song that they lose concentration or pitch or control, but Curtis seems like he can maintain control and had perfect pitch. Hopefully he will have a good group performance.
Fresh Prince Theme Song
I mean really, who sings The Fresh Prince theme song at an audition? Better yet, who sings it and makes it sound original, fresh, and current? Seretha, apparently. I like her originality – something idol always needs. I hope she doesn’t get lost in the shuffle.
Cowboy Cassanova by Carrie Underwood
Nicki nicknamed her blondie, and she gave another unexpected performance that was solid. I hope she continues to make unexpected performance choices. Plus she’s a tad bit cray cray, which keeps it interesting.
Gimme Shelter by the Stones
A good rock voice is always a welcome addition to the idol cast, and Gabe gets the award for craziest rocker shown on the auditions. Nicki called him curly. His voice needs to be honed a bit, but he has awesome potential.
The Prayer by Celine Dion
Big song, big voice, great dynamics and great control. She is obviously well trained. Plus she is cute and has great style. I cannot wait to hear more from this one.
Something’s Got A Hold On Me by Xtina
Miss Baton Rouge who needed knee surgery hobbled her way to the audition. She sang some Xtina, and while I don’t think she will win the competition, I think she would fill a nice role in the top 12. She has a solid voice and is well versed in being on stage.
If I Ain’t Got You by Alicia Keys
She is seasoned, serious, and sassy (her look is, anyway.) She has major vocal talent and her pitch was spot on. I mean, she nailed Alicia Keys, so props for that! I hope she stands out in Hollywood Week.
Who’s Loving You by MJ
This kid is so happy! How can you not smile when he walks in the room. Nicki said he was sunshine and rainbows. And he has huge potential and maybe needs a bit of guidance? I am rooting for him to get some good vocal coaching and take some risks to get him through hollywood week.
Mama Knows Best by Jessie J
Her voice has a great smooth tone and she controls it well. Plus I loved that she picked a current artist. She could do well in Hollywood if she continues to make innovative and unique choices.
Chicken Fried by Zac Brown Band
Despite having a speech impediment as a result of a tonsilectomy (scary!) it doesn’t affect his singing. He would be fantastic even without the sob story. I’m rooting for this one, and I hope America is, too.
Stay tuned for an episode recap coming at you tomorrow morning! And for live commentary, follow me on twitter: @idolreview18.