American Idol – Recap & Review – Solo Round I

photo: fox

photo: fox

American Idol
Solo Round I

Original Air Date: Mar 5, 2013

Patricia Morris Buckley — Sr. Staff Writer
pmb@thetwocentscorp.com

Finally, the judges aren’t the ones in control anymore. For better or worse, the Idol Top 10 will be decided by America as the contestants perform over two days with a results show Thursday. Once again, the cuts will be brutal.

Tuesday it was the women’s turn for their first live show. So 10 contestants sang, but only five will go on after Thursday. Unless… the judges get their yearly wild card vote. We’ll see…

Contestant: ZOANETTE JOHNSON
Song: “What’s Love Got to do With It?”
My Impression: She makes up words and misses more notes than she hits. It’s obvious that a stylist has pulled her back from her previous clownish outfits. Toward the end she picks up steam and has a few good moments.
Judges: KEITH praised her unbridled ferocity, but didn’t care for the song choice. NICKI said, “that wasn’t it” and that with this song, she had to be on key. RANDY called her a spirit leader but it was a mess with the pitch all over the place. MARIAH said it wasn’t her favorite performance.

Contestant: BREANNA STEER
Song: “Flaws and All”
My Impression: She struggles with the rhythm and pitch throughout. Her hand waving is distracting. But what a wonderful tone she has.
Judges: KEITH loves her song choices but warned her not to be Beyonce. NICKI thought it was the wrong song for her and that she strained through the performance. RANDY thought it was safe song choice but he liked her tenderness. MARIAH thought she didn’t have a chance to show off her voice.

Contestant: AUBREY CLELAND
Song: “Big Girls Don’t Cry”
Impression: She flubs on some noticeable notes. It’s good, but not great. There are no big notes, which shows that she’s not a belter.
Judges: KEITH thought she looked fantastic but wished song allowed her to soar more. NICKI loved her vibrato and loved her. RANDY agreed with Nicki and Keith and noted there’s something current and infectious about her. MARIAH said she has multiplatinum potential.

Contestant: JANELLE ARTHUR
Song: “If I Can Dream”
My Impression: She starts singing seated on a stool, which probably makes her taller! She has a nice, unforced sound to her voice. She also mostly hits the notes solidly.
Judges: KEITH loved that she has a classic country voice blended with contemporary runs. NICKI said she is back and that it was the best vocal of night “so far.” RANDY liked the old throw back thing in her voice and that’s missing now. MARIAH said she did what she set out to do and did it well.

Contestant: TENNA TORRES
Song: “Lost”
My Impression: It’s a nice showy tune with nice money notes. Nice, but not great. Better than she’s done before.
Judges: KEITH thought she did a good job, but advised her not to let camera sweep her away from the emotion. NICKI said she looked pretty, especially her boobs (!), and liked her emotional connection. RANDY liked that she made the song her own but restrained from over singing. MARIAH applauded the song choices and her changes to it.

Contestant: ANGIE MILLER (last week she was Angela Miller.)
Song: “Never Gone”
My Impression: I feel like I’m at her concert. She plays the piano and imbibes the story with huge emotion. She was right on pitch and had beautiful tonal quality. BTW, the song was written by Season 11 singer Colton Dixon.
Judges: KEITH called it beautiful. NICKI thought she would definitely go through and praised her “signature sound.” RANDY said a star has been born and she was born to do this. MARIAH was so happy to hear her back at the piano and loved her song choice.

Contestant: AMBER HOLCOMB
Song: “I Believe in You and Me”
My Impression: She reminds me a bit of Jessica Sanchez. She has such command of her instrument. Her sound is so pretty.
Judges: KEITH said she had no shortage of confidence and loved her exquisite tone. NICKI awarded it a 10, saying her vocals are surpassing the competition. RANDY said she took on Whitney and she worked it out. MARIAH called her one of her favorites

Contestant: KREE HARRISON
Song: “Stronger”
My Impression: She nails it. What an effortless voice she has – so full and rich.
Judges: KEITH loved hearing her sing and compared her to Faith Hill and Martina McBride. NICKI said her sexiness level went up and her tone is rich – it’s her favorite tone among the girls. RANDY had no idea that her range was that big and she could sing anything. MARIAH said it was un-toppable and she has an undeniable thing she has.

Contestant: ADRIANA LATONIO
Song: “Stand Up for Love”
My Impression: It’s kind of pageant-y. The long dress doesn’t help. It never really soared despite her best efforts.
Judges: KEITH thought it wasn’t the best song choice because it took too long to get to the big notes. NICKI suggested she work more and come back next year as the song was too big for her. RANDY said it wasn’t “it” for him. MARIAH thought it was something you’d hear at an event.

Contestant: CANDICE GLOVER
Song: “Ordinary People”
My Impression: She not as good as last week. I hear her strain to hit some notes and the song just isn’t memorable the way she arranged it. But she’s still in the top 5.
Judges: KEITH liked her blend, which made her sound current. NICKI just saluted her.
RANDY said it was ridiculous and called her one of the best singers in the competition. He also said they may need a wild card. MARIAH thanked her for sharing her gift with everyone.

My Top 5 – Angie Miller, Amber Holcomb, Kree Harrison and Candice Glover. I’m split over Janelle Arthur and Breanna Steer for the last spot.

Wednesday night it’s the guys’ turn. I’m excited to see what Charlie Askew will do.

Which female singers do you think will go through? Do you think that anyone outright bombed? Do you think the producers want Adriana to get cut because she looks so much like Jessica Sanchez? Give us your TwoCents…

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