After taking a bite out of the Big Apple, the American Idol entourage headed off to the Windy City. Will lightning strike twice and will production discover another Jennifer Hudson in Chicago? Perhaps not, but the audition stop gave Nigel Lythgoe a contestant with one of the most touching backstories in Idol history. No lie, but tears came out of this cold heart.
When Seacrest kept hyping Lazaro Arbos as a watercooler performance, I had my doubts. Was this just a case of overpromising and under-delivering? His claims sounded a lot like Chris Harrison’s “most dramatic rose ceremony” empty promises. To my surprise, Seacrest was bang on, Arbos’ audition made me revel at his miraculous voice and gave me my first tears of the season. Yup, I’m a sucker for a touching sob story and this one delivers. You simply have to watch it below.
Before we get to the auditions, I have to quickly comment on Keith Urban’s judging style. Given all the distractions (clowns to the left, and jokers to the right), the Aussie country singer has a knack for delivering concise, intelligent and constructive critics. I think Urban might emerge as the true winner of the season after all is said and done.
Speaking of distractions, was it me or did Nicki’s eyes seemed a little glazed over? Just sayin’. While Minaj and Carey continued to escalate their beef, there actually was a touching moment between them tonight. Nicki gave Mariah a genuine compliment, saying meeting her for the first time was monumental. Hopefully, by the live rounds these two have a détente. I already get my fill of screaming ladies during my Real Housewives fix. Enough about that… let’s get to Chicago’s most memorable auditions, especially the closing one by Lazaro Arbos.
When was the last time a white boy with soul made the Top 10? For the past few years, it’s been the folksy bluesy rocker type that’s advanced on the main stage. To my recollection, was Elliot Yamin the last one? Refresh my memory Idol fans. I really liked Josh’s soulful R&B sound. Here’s hoping the Texan makes it far.
Is it me or is Johnny not only better this year, but also cuter? The Florida hottie definitely made an impression on horned up Nicki. Good eye candy, but I just don’t see that X factor. Ooops, wrong show.
How adorable is she? Loved her tender sweet voice. Props for having the balls to ask Keith Urban to duet with her on a classic Christmas track. Gave me an Ellie Goulding meets Colbie Caillat vibe.
She claims she’s from Planet Earth, but I beg to differ. Kez is a little cray cray. Was pleasantly surprised that she actually had a decent voice. After her audition ended, Kez returned to crazy town and had the chutzpah to ask Seacrest if she could sign documents on a another day. Is she for real? I can’t wait to see her on group day in Hollywood. Epic meltdown.
This cutie once performed for President Obama at his birthday fundraiser. Loved her vibe and look. A little too much vibrato for my taste, but a solid audition.
Mariah fought back the tears as she told the judges about her past anorexia. Such a gorgeous girl. Gave a really emotional performance that moved the judges. Really rooting for this chick.
Even watching it the second time around, I was moved and found myself misty-eyed. It’s amazing how he can sing without hesitation but yet be inflicted with a serious speech impediment. The human body and mind is mystifying. If Lazaro makes it to the voting rounds, he’s going to be tough to beat. I think the whole country fell in love with this kid after this.
Talk about sexual harassment. Nicki practically molests the following parade of male hotties. Watching this though, inspired me to use the word ‘playboy‘ more often. It’s kinda fun in the right context.
Who was your favorite during the Chicago auditions? Should we save time and just crown Lazaro Arbos the winner now? If it’s not him, have we already seen this season’s winner? If so, who? Sound off below.