Well the talent must be good this year as evidenced by so many good duets tonight. What I’m looking for in the duets is to find Idolists who don’t look like they’re being helped by the star or that they’re merely singing along with them. In the brief time of their performance, I want the Idolists to look and sound like a peer with their star partners. Tonight, those that were able to accomplish that were rewarded with A- grades or better.
They Could Be The Last Two Standing
- Laci Kaye Booth/Mercy Brett Young – This duet was as amazing as I forecast in my previous blog. I would download this in a heartbeat. Moreover, her and Brett delivered a truly authentic performance that sold the song to the audience. As I’ve said repeatedly, she could win this thing. Katy must think so too, by saying, “I don’t want to play favorites but . . .” A+
- Laine Hardy/Elle King The Weight The Band – This, too, lived up to my expectations. Maybe even surpassed them as high as they were. He looks like the most seasoned performer of all the Idolists – well maybe except for the over-the-topness of Uche´ – and so far every song he’s done sounds like they’ve come right out of the gigs he was busy doing before this season. A
I could easily see a Finale with these two and I’m really looking forward to see how I feel about Alejandro and Jeremiah after tomorrow night.
I Felt Badly for Them
There are stars and there are STARS. As in icons. Pat Benatar is the latter along with her iconic songbook. When Pat is singing her songs, they’re hers even if she’s singing them with somebody else. The other people pretty much become irrelevant.
That said, I felt like both Kate Barnette and Madison Vandenburg got swallowed up by Her Benatarness despite them both giving solid performances. Madison (We Belong) held her big voice back a bit when it was needed; and I’m convinced that Kate’s Heartbreaker wasn’t a good song choice for her style and vibe even though I liked The Bangles meets Heart sound of her and Pat together. I gave a B to both.
I’m Legit Angry About This
Poor Shawn Robinson never had a chance. While I thought that Ike and Tina Turner’s uptempo version of Proud Mary would be awful for him, I still believed it would be the best possible version. Elle King’s last-minute change-up from that to a weak midtempo arrangement that nobody could make sound good was a disaster not to mention that he screwed up an entry point during their performance. We knew about that because she outright threw him under the bus for that after the performance! He gets an incomplete while she gets an F for a “star” behaving badly. And she hasn’t been around long enough to have “earned” the right to be a diva.
Coming into tonight I thought that Riley Thompson and Ashley Hess might be candidates for being cut. Both stepped up and gave wonderful performances tonight.
- Riley Thompson/Like I Loved You Brett Young – This was a real duet. They sounded great together and unlike when she sang Jolene, she really got and sold the feeling of the song. A-
- Ashley Hess/I’m Yours Jason Mraz – This was the cleverest duet of the evening. I loved that they each basically performed different arrangements of the song when they were singing solo and then added a third arrangement when they sang together. A
- Walker Burroughs/Have It All Jason Mraz – Pleasant. B
- Uche´/I Need Your Love Shaggy – Great energy. A-
- Bumbly/Angel Shaggy – She sounded good on this as if she was the featured female singer on a Shaggy single. B+
Cut From The Show
Kate Barnette, Shawn, and Bumbly. I can’t argue with these choices by the judges.
I’m looking forward to seeing how Jeremiah, Alejandro, Evelyn Cormier and Wade Cota do. I could also easily see Alyssa Raghu, Logan Johnson and Raquel Trinidad being cut so I’m wondering if they can come up with performances to save themselves like Riley and Ashley did tonight.
In the meantime, I hope you enjoy some good music. I finally listened to the phenomenon that is Old Town Road by Lil Nas X and the remix of it with Billy Ray Cyrus. Pretty catchy.