Reflecting on the American Idol Season 10 Top 7 performances and the results show…we didn’t learn anything this week, did we? Yes, saw Haley Reinhart confirm our suspicions that she is a really terrific singer. But that was about it. Everyone else showed us nothing new. As good as last week’s Top 8 results show was, see our American Idol Season 10 Top 7 Power Rankings, this week’s results show was bad. The two small group numbers were clumsy and poorly arranged. David Cook was good but Katy Perry was horrific. This week was the worst of Season 10.
We are down to six on American Idol Season 10. I am not a huge Casey Abrams fan but everyone else has a real, legitimate chance to win American Idol. As good as the guys have been all season, the winner will be the performer who steps it up from here. Over the next five weeks the Idols will need to deliver more exilerating visual performances and create emotional bonds to the songs that pull us deeply into the joy, despair or rage of the songs. They need to do this while singing perfectly and appearing confident.
We start that quest with the songs of Carol King and that is going to be a challenge. She is a terrific songwriter and her catalogue of troubadour songs are an integral part of our musical lexicon. Tapestry remains one of the great albums of the 70′s. “Natural Woman”, “You’ve Got A Friend”, So Far Away” and the rest of the songs from Carol King’s catalogue are intimate and emotionally complex. But these are not big songs and these performers need big songs. If the Idols can extract the firewaorks and impact necessary to get America’s attention this week, I will be awestruck. I think Jacob Lusk and James Durbin have their work cut out for them this week.
American Idol Season 10 Top 6 Power Rankings
This is the first year since I have watched that I cannot predict a winner this late in the season. All six of the remaining performers can win American Idol Season 10. The competition is close enough that it will be decided in the next five weeks. Our power rankings are not a prediction about who will win. The rankings are a combination of who I think will win, who I think is the best singer/performer and my personal preference. The Top 5 are almost interchangeble for me.
1) Jacob Lusk- I know, he was in the bottom 2 this week. I know he is an acquired taste for many. Christian musician Jacob Lusk is my favorite. I doubt he will win but he has the most unique talent on American Idol Season 10. I have been listening to Jacob in a mix with Jennifer Hudson, Melinda Doolittle, Lakisha Jones and Rueben Studdard. His singing still needs a little training but he has superior talent to all of them and I do not say that lightly. Jacob Lusk needs to now take all of the advice he has received lately about emotional control as a launching pad for the full on Jacob Lusk gospel throw downs for as long as he remains.
2) James Durbin- This past week’s performance of “Uprising” was his first misstep of the season. The judges loved James’s staging of this Muse favorite. I found it shrill and indulgent. It is beginning to feel like James Durbin is treating American Idol Season 10 as his personal playground more than laboratory to develop himself as a future superstar. While appreciate his youthful exuberance, he does need to work on his craft.
3) Scott McCreery-I think Christian musician Scott McCreey is the frontrunner to win American Idol Season 10. However, Scott really needs to show some variety in his song selection. I understand he is a seventeen year-old high school student. I also understand that, after he wins American Idol, we will probably never hear him sing anything but country music. However, if Scott McCreery walks through Season 10 doing nothing but country music, his victory will be as shallow as some of the worst results we have seen on American Idol. This show should just demand more of the winner. Let’s be clear though, I am a fan of Scott McCreery.
4) Haley Reinhart- She may have waited too long to find herself and I wait to see it she can emotionally connect to her songs each week, but she ranks with Jacob and James as a singer. Here voice is strong, pure with range and flexibility. She loves the growl, she overuses it but she does not need it. Haley Reinhart could be the Idol who wandered through the competition the first six weeks, connected with herself as an artist and blows us away over the back-end of the season to win. She can do that if she continues to perform as she did last week with Adele’s “Rolling In The Deep.”
5) Lauren Alaina- Christian musician Lauren Alaina, with her talent, personality, humor and charisma, has the best chance to be a star. She reminds me of Reba or Dolly or maybe even a country Cher. She will be the first to host her own Christmas special and she will be a hit in Vegas. To win American Idol Season 10 she needs to let go and allow her talent to shine. This stage seems to intimidate her a bit and it should not. If she continues to hold back as she has all season, she will fall short of the top 3.
6) Casey Abrams- I think I am just over Casey Abrams. I enjoyed him through Hollywood week, but watching him week in and week out his act has grown tiring. His performance this week was out of control, unfocused and almost manic. I think Casey has an interesting musical vision, he just needs to refine his craft to realize that vision.
I hope you are enjoying American Idol Season 10 as much as we are. Join us on Wednesday to continue the journey as we live blog the Top 6 performances.