We are down to the Top 11 on American Idol Season 8 and all six Christian music artists are still in the mix. The performers left standing after this Wednesday night’s results show will join the American Idol tour, achieve a new level of financial success with American Idol and generally set themselves up well for a career in the music industry.
Tonight Randy Travis will coach the American Idol performers as they perform songs made famous by members of the Grand Ole’ Opry. What does that mean? I cannot begin to predict, suggest, imagine what the contestants will sing, but it will be interesting. None of the American Idol Season 8 contestants have shown any interest in country music.
Based on their regional base, it would seem that Michael Sarver and Kris Allen would seem to have an advantage. In Texas and Arkansas you are never more than 10 minutes from a country song. Alexis Grace and Lil Rounds are from Memphis, which you would think is in the South, but the blues and soul of Memphis drowns out the country, so I think they could struggle.
We will see if Danny Gokey, Scott MacIntyre and Matt Giraud are as skilled at musical arrangement as we think they are. I anticipate that Allison Iraheta, Anoop Desai, Megan Corkery and Adam Lambert could struggle mightily.
My American Idol power rankings have changed slightly since last week, with Lil Rounds and Kris Allen making big moves and Matt Giraud and Anoop Desai dropping.
- Danny Gokey showed his fun side last week and he did it well. This week will be a big test but I think he is much more popular than Internet bloggers would like to think.
- Lil Rounds just dominated her performance last week. She is emerging as a formidable soul singer.
- Allison Iraheta wrapped her big voice around Michael Jackson last week showing she can do more than rock.
- Kris Allen is showing more and more soul every week. This week should work well for him.
- Meagan Corkery was comical last week and she should never, ever dance again, but she showed more singing chops than I have seen throughout Season 8.
- Matt Giraud still has not justified his status as an early forerunner. He needs a few weeks of outstanding performances or he will begin to fall behind.
- Scott MacIntyre, I think, is touching a cord in America even though he is not a great singer.
- Alexis Grace delivered another raucous performance last week and I don’t think she likes the personae the judges are molding for her. Look for her to tone down her image this week.
- Michael Sarver is rated this low because he is probably the weakest musician remaining in the competition. However, Michael Sarver seems to have some magic on television. Let’s see how long his tele-charm holds up.
- Adam Lambert will probably be the American Idol performer for which the judges use their “save”. I just don’t get his over-the-top screaming performances.
- Anoop Desai has received three chances to impress on live television. He has failed to deliver. He is one more poor performance from missing the American Idol tour.
American Idol contestants, remember that country music wandered out of the country into the city and melded with soul to create rock and roll. If you can sing soul music, you can sing country and the best country has a heavy dose of soul. That really comes to light on the compilation CD Rhythm, Country and Blues. This CD features soul singers and country singers such as Sam Moore (Sam & Dave) and Conway Twitty and Vince Gill and Gladys Knight singing classic soul and country songs. The results are spectacular.
Tonight’s episode of American Idol should go a long way toward separating the favorites from the really good singers. I can’t wait.
Join us as we live blog American Idol’s episode tonight.
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