Would it be alright this season if we just had an all-male American Idol?
No one wanted to see a girl win Season 10 more than I did. We haven't seen a female win Idol since Jordin Sparks four seasons ago -- an eternity in pop music. But after 12 uninspiring song choices and/or bland, ordinary, forgettable or off-key performances from the Top 12 girls, I'm convinced a guy's winning Idol again.
I'd hate to be stuck on a long car ride with any of these girls if they had control of the radio. Their taste in music is awful. A bilingual Hero. ¡Que horror! Alicia Keys' banal Fallin' on the Idol stage. Again. Zzzz. The Pretenders' sappy I'll Stand By You. An unrecognizable Fiona Apple song. (Natalie Cole did a good cover of Criminal on one of her CDs. Listen to that one instead.) Christina Aguilera. It's 12 Steps Into Musical Hell.
Of the 12, five automatically make the finals based on viewers' votes. That should mean Lauren Turner, America's Got Talent contestant Thea Megia, Naima Adedapo, Lauren Alaina and Pia Toscana move forward. No one else deserves a Wild Card save. The judges should give two of the guys the Wild Cards if they must use them.
Of those five, Naima has the most imagination. She chose the overdone Summertime, forever owned by Fantasia on the Idol stage, but she did it as an uptempo, jaunty swing number and it was at least fresh. She has some flair.
Thea, the youngest at 15, has the best voice. She chose the tired 1980 Fame ballad, Out Here on My Own (a song her parents probably slow danced to in junior high) and she sang it sweetly and in tune and with some nuance. Still, it wasn't exciting. She's talented, though.
Turner has the most potential if she can really tap into her inner Bette Midler. J.Lo had compared her to the younger Divine Miss M, but she needs to own it considerably more than she revealed tonight. Her jazzy cabaret-like number, Seven Day Fool, was the right kind of song for her voice but it lacked sass and attitude. If Turner can tear the inner bawdy babe from within, she'll be worthy.
Pia sang that godawful Pretenders ballad I'll Stand By You and Alaina chose the all-time worst Reba single, Turn On Your Radio, and both were major step backs from the huge promise shown in the audition rounds.
The rest of the contestants really don't merit a mention. What does merit mention, however, is the much improved performance of Randy Jackson as a judge. Randy's bringing it this season. The dawg's a JUDGE! His criticism is constructive. He's really listening and he's demanding. Steven Tyler, however, proved he can't say no to a lady. He was useless tonight.
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