AMERICAN IDOL 7: TOP 20 – THE GUYS

Let’s see, if we had Sixties Night last week and Seventies Night this week, does that mean we can expect Eighties Night next week? Maybe, which is why I’m listing an eighties song suggestion for each of the contestants after each review. So like The Cars say, “Let’s Go”!

MICHAEL JOHNS: “Go Your Own Way”

Unfortunately much of the power of the Fleetwood Mac original comes from the guitars and powerhouse drumming, not the singing. That said, Michael doesn’t come close to matching the wild passion and sheer desperation that Lindsey Buckingham brought to the song, plus Johns was a little off key at times during the chorus. Still, I’d be surprised if he doesn’t stick around.

EIGHTIES PICK:  “Biggest Part of Me” by Ambrosia

JASON CASTRO: “I Just Want to Be Your Everything”

Whenever I’m in Burbank at night, I can hear whatever classic rock songs the singer/guitarist is playing at the Burbank Bar & Grill. Well, Jason would fit right in there tonight. Although he brought some emotion to the song, his vocals weren’t up to par and it seemed like the background vocalists were bearing much of the load. He should have tackled one of the jazzy Paul Simon songs of the seventies, like “Me And Julio Down By The Schoolyard.”

EIGHTIES PICK:  “Don’t Dream It’s Over” by Crowded House

LUKE MENARD: “Killer Queen”

A little weird seeing that falsetto coming out of such a masculine looking guy. While a fun performance, he should have performed a song that would let him really dig into the lyrics (say Marvin Gaye’s”Let’s Get It On”) or one that allowed him to play to the ladies (like Exile’s “Kiss You All Over”). I can hear him doing a good job with something by George Michael.

EIGHTIES PICK:  “Broken Wings” by Mr. Mister

ROBBIE CARRICO: “Hot Blooded”

I agree with the judges… he’s no Lou Gramm. Still, it was well sung. Robbie should try some country rock. He has the voice for it and he already looks like Travis Tritt.

EIGHTIES PICK:   “Higher Love” by Steve Winwood for soul, “Drivin’ My Life Away” by Eddie Rabbitt for country or if he insists on sticking to rock, “Here I Go Again” by Whitesnake

DANNY NORIEGA: “Superstar”

Danny’s obviously better playing things serious (unlike last week’s debacle) and he has the teen idol look down. Not bad tonight, but not great either.

EIGHTIES PICK:  “Missing You” by John Waite (perhaps in a more dramatic slowed down arrangement)

DAVID HERNANDEZ – “Poppa Was A Rollin’ Stone”

I’ve always thought this was one of the more boring classic hits, probably because of the drawn out intro. David showed off a fine growling vocal, but really, this is only one of the top performances of the night because the competition wasn’t exactly fierce.

EIGHTIES PICK:  “I Want to Know What Love Is” by Foreigner

JASON YEAGER: “Long Train Runnin'”

Jason’s no rocker. He has a good voice, but he’s obviously more of a pop guy, so this song didn’t do him any favors. Plus, did anyone else think his shirt looked a bit tight on him?

EIGHTIES PICK:  “Into The Night” by Benny Mardones

CHIKEZIE: “I Believe To My Soul”

Kind of a fun performance. Somewhere Elliott Yamin is screaming at the TV, “Why didn’t they like the song when I did it?”

EIGHTIES PICK:  “Lean On Me” by Club Nouveau

DAVID COOK: “All Right Now”

One of the alltime greatest rock songs and David did it justice vocally. I just wish he looked like he was having fun during the performance. It also didn’t work when he took the mike off the stand and then put it back on so quickly.

EIGHTIES PICK:  “Centerfold” by the J. Geils Band (hopefully such a fun song would help David open up a bit)

DAVID ARCHULETA: “Imagine”

I think this is a hard song to give a special performance of because the melody is so simple (take a look at Blake Lewis’ try last year). It probably works better as a sing along. But David did indeed give it some drama. You could see this performance closing a concert someday.

Obviously the contest is David’s to lose and unlike some early frontrunners in the past, he won’t be stumbling. That will make for a very boring season, although things should pick up once we’re into the Top 12 and the shows are an hour long.

EIGHTIES PICK: Really, the kid could sing anything. But I’ll recommend “Lady” by Kenny Rogers.

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