American Idol: Bye Heejun
Billy Joel night provided a lot of excellent opportunities for the Idols to shine, with the notable exception of Heejun Han, who provided comic relief by not enough vocal ability to stay in the competition with his “funny” take on “My Life.”
Someone who should stay is Erika Van Pelt complete with a new haircut and dark hair, who presented a wonderful, sensual rendition of Joel’s “New York State of Mind.”
I didn’t get DeAndre Brackensick’s slick and bouncy take on “Only the Good Die Young.” He didn’t understand the song. Joshua Ledet seemed a bit out of his element when he started singing’s “She’s Got A Way,” but he found his gospel sweet spot, complete with choir, for the finish.
Skylar Laine’s “Shameless” began badly, since the key was obviously too low for her and she struggled to find the notes. However, the country rock gal found her groove later on and that should be enough to keep her safe tonight.
Elise Testone presented her usual jazzy inflections to “Vienna,” but I thought she had a few rough spots when she over sang to the point of nearly yelling. None of the judges agreed with me.
I love Phil Phillips, but I guess I’m more of a Billy Joel purist than I realized because I thought “Movin’ Out” didn’t need to be changed so radically, especially PP’s wacky tempo change. Hey Phil squared, sometimes a song is great just the way it is.
Hollie Cavanagh’s makeover was terrific but her version of “Honesty” was, as Randy noted, “Pitchy.” This night was made for Hollie’s big voice but she was distracted or something.
Jessica Sanchez did deliver all the right notes with “Everybody Has A Dream,” a song that really does sum up what Idol is all about. Still, she seemed less engaging than usual last night.
Colton Dixon wrapped up the evening at the piano with one of his best performances to date on “Piano Man.” On this night he was better than James Durbin lite.
My top ten: