Oooh, Crystal looks all sparkly and pretty tonight! Fun. And hello there, Harry Connick, Jr. Nice to see you.
Kara finally doesn't look like she spent the previous night on a bender. Simon's shirt is precariously low cut. It's a little awkward.
I love Frank, so tonight could be fun. And Harry Connick, Jr. wrote the arrangements for them. That could be a very good idea.
No random camera shots in the audience for HCJ, noooo, he got the grand entrance down the stairs. He will be playing piano for the contestants, too. Very nice.
Sinatra's daughters, Nancy and Tina are in attendance. And they gave a monogrammed hankie of Frank's to Simon. Fun. He couldn't wait to tear into it.
02) & 07) Casey James (Blue Skies) Hilariously, one of Casey's friends thought he could be swayed away from AI with $50 and a free dinner. His friend apparently doesn't watch tv and has no idea about the whole AI thing. Casey told him he was kind of busy. Harry said that this is less about the lyrics for Casey than bringing the right vibe. I thought the first notes were really rough, but when the band came in, he got better. He's still sooooo bleating, and it is glaringly obvious without his grand guitar. He pulled some weird faces, too. Now, he had some nice long notes that the vibrato stayed out of for a good long time, and then snuck into at the end. Not my favorite, but he did a serviceable job. Yo, uhhhh, Randy thought it was his worst performance, pitchy from beginning to end. He said when he was singing, the orchestra sounded out of key. And you know that's bad. Ellen made a crack about HCJ, and said that his performance felt very stiff, and he did not have the required swagger. Kara thought he started loosening up by the end, and said it was nice to hear him hold notes... but what's this? She said he sounds like a lamb and needs to work on his vibrato. Is she just noticing that? Simon said the good news was that the band was great, but the bad news was that Casey wasn't that great, and came across as embarrassed. Casey admitted to being uncomfortable without his guitar, and HCJ said that he sang better in rehearsal, and admits that it's hard to hear on the stage. "You killed it about two hours ago. Not that that's going to help you." Bwah ha ha.
03) & 08) Crystal Bowersox (Summer Wind) HCJ had no advice for Crystal, who made vague and enigmatic references to the song's meaning for her. She looks beautiful. Her voice sounds astounding. Seriously. This is a good style for her. I love Crystal so so much. Randy thought it was a great arrangement and one of her more subdued performances. He thought it was sleepy. Ellen thought at first, it was like she was swallowing words, but then she opened up and did a great job. Ellen called her really impressive. Kara says it's out of her element, but loved her phrasing and kind of liked it. Simon loves the song, wasn't in love with the song choice for her in his mind. He thought it was indulgent. He said this is her second "ok" week. I still loved it and will be voting for her. Crystal said that it is a sweet love song and doesn't need to be sung big all the time, and doesn't think that she should sing big notes because she is on AI, it should be about the music. Simon just wants her to present herself in the best possible way.
04) & 09) Michael Lynche (The Way You Look Tonight) I think vocally, he is spot on. I get annoyed by singers who lick their lips while they sing. I predict that this will be yet another forgettable Michael performance. He's good, but I just can't get excited about him. He seems so schmaltzy. Randy, yo, thought it was an unbelievable arrangement and declares that Michael is in it to win it. Ellen thinks that he is the most comfortable on stage and loves his look and his sound. Kara thought he found the drama in the song and did everything right, and didn't lose himself. Simon thought that Michael had the best performance of the night so far, and felt that he listened and everyone worked together, and applauded the arrangement. I like him better on this than in previous weeks, but will I remember him tomorrow? Not sure.
05) & 10) Lee Dewyze (That's Life) HCJ says that his wife thinks Lee is cute, and after meeting him thinks that he's a new and improved version of himself. That's funny. Great song choice for Lee. I think this is the most relaxed Lee has looked on stage, and he really has a great voice for this kind of music. I think this might be my favorite Lee performance. Well, except for the Epic Bagpipes. That can't be topped. But, great great job. Randy also applauded the arrangement, and loved how Lee stayed true to himself. Ellen was distracted at first by Harry's organ (bwah ha ha, go Ellen), and thinks that if this was the last night of performances, he would have won the whole thing. Kara asked him if he believes he can win, and told him to go write it 100 times later tonight. Simon applauded HCJ and thinks that he has brought Lee's personality and confidence out. He loves that Lee gave it 110% and said it was by far the best of the night.
I would have to agree - Lee is on top tonight, followed by Crystal for me (I really loved her performance), with Michael next, and then Aaron and Casey. One of them ought to go. I am left wishing that Siobahn had gotten her chance at this theme. She could have killed it.
What do you think?