American Idol 9: Top 9 Performances Ranked Redux


Welcome to American Idol “Groundhog Day” style. With the judges saving Michael Lynche last week, we were once again entertained with nine spectacular so-so performances. Granted, no one completely embarrassed themselves on stage, but I wasn’t entirely wowed either.

This week, the Idols tackled Elvis Presley’s catalogue of songs with Adam Lambert as a mentor. While I’m a huge fan of the season eight finalist, I’m on the fence with him being a mentor. Why, him? Besides physically resembling the rock-n-roll legend, I’m not sure if he was the smartest choice to pick as a mentor.

Considering it was the first time Idol has chosen a previous contestant to mentor the kids, I wish they had gone with an Idol alum who’s more of an established artist with a proven track record at selling records like Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood. I digress. Let’s get to this week’s rankings.

9. Andrew Garcia

Performance: Hound Dog by Elvis Presley
I had such high hopes with Andrew making the Top 24, but since then he’s pretty much disappointed every week with one notable exception- Chris Brown’s “Forever”. When he’s not playing his acoustic guitar, he comes off very cheesy and sounds like a poor-man’s Danny Gokey. OUCH. No one deserves that harsh a comment. He wasn’t God awful tonight, but in a sea of mediocrity… he was the worst. Adios Garcia.

8. Siobhan Magnus

Performance: Suspicious Minds by Elvis Presley
I agree with Simon that the first half was a hot mess. When she’s singing calmly and in her lower register, she’s far from impressive. But when she belts it out, she’s amazing. Unfortunately, you can’t always be screeching throughout your entire career. Even Whitney and Mariah tone it down every once in a while.

7. Aaron Kelly

Performance: Blue Suede Shoes by Elvis Presley
Was I the only one uncomfortable when he walked over to the judges and sang directly to Kara whilst moving his hips side-to-side. It was like watching a bad episode (and less hot version) of “Cougar Town”. There was something very unnatural watching him grind his hips on stage. The one positive thing I will point out is, Aaron finally wore a decent outfit. Well, I guess that credit goes to the stylist rather than him. Oh well, I tried.

6. Casey James

Performance: Lawdy Miss Clawdy by Elvis Presley
When he’s not singing a slow ballad, Casey loses his entire appeal with me and transforms into your local amateur blues singer. Speaking of the blues, why did most of the contestants blues-ify their performances tonight? It was giving me the blues and I was over it real fast.

5. Tim Urban

Performance: Can’t Help Falling in Love by Elvis Presley
How in the heck did Tim make it this high on my list? Is it due to my lowered expectations of him? Who knows? Whatever it is, Tim sounded pretty good tonight. His performance was reminiscent of his high point of the season- Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”. At this point, a Tim win is becoming a valid possibility. Could he pull off what Sanjaya couldn’t do?

4. Lee DeWyze

Performance: A Little Less Conversation by Elvis Presley
I don’t know what it is, but as good as the judges say Lee is, he never takes the top spot on my list. Normally a cute guy with a guitar has me written all over it, but for some reason or another I can’t get on the Lee bandwagon. For all the Crystal haters who complain she’s a one-trick pony, Lee is even more so. At least Crystal’s played the piano for a couple of bars a couple of weeks ago.

3. Katie Stevens

Performance: Baby, What You Want Me to Do by Elvis Presley
If Katie had only sported her new-found-confidence earlier in the season she’d have a strong shot at the title. At this point it’s a little too little too late. Having said that, she did a pretty good job and I can’t believe I’m saying this… but during her performance she reminded me of a young Kelly Clarkson- complete with her sassy vocals and sassier head shakes.

2. Crystal Bowersox

Performance: Saved by Elvis Presley
Another week. Another solid performance. I’m glad she mixed it up this week and picked up an electric guitar. During moments in her performance, I found myself really getting into it. At times I felt I was at a gospel church wanting to praise the Lord and raise the roof. With her consistent showings, I fear she might get blindsided and leave us like Melinda Doolittle did a few seasons ago. She needs to have a bad week so we can root for a “semi-underdog”.

1. Michael Lynche

Performance: In the Ghetto by Elvis Presley
Last week I wasn’t impressed with the judges using their save to give Michael a second chance. But after tonight’s impressive turn, I take it all back. Michael, much like Casey, is at his best when he’s vulnerable and stripping down a track to its bare bones. Hopefully he’ll stick to this line of performance instead of the over-dramatic “Eleanor Rigby” he massacred last week.



With no one eliminated last week, this week we get to bid adieu to two Idol contestants- TGIF. Since Tim did quite well, he’s saved his neck once again thus putting another Idol in jeopardy. I predict the two eliminated will come from a combination of Andrew, Aaron and sadly Siobhan. Unfortunately for her, Magnus didn’t receive positive feedback from the judges and she’s losing momentum rapidly since “Paint It Black”. Hopefully she’ll be safe, but I highly doubt it.

SHOULD GO: Aaron Kelly, Andrew Garcia
WILL GO: Andrew Garcia, Siobhan Magnus

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  • Anthony

    Donovan, I really like you and all… but if you compare Katie to Kelly even one more time, I’m going to have to flip a couch.

  • HAHA. I totally understand. Maybe I’m still suffering from sleep deprivation and jet lag. Promise I’ll never do it again. haha

  • EZ

    I don’t get how you ranked Michael above Crystal again. He is good, aint better than Crystal.

  • kodie

    Uggh i’m over most of the contestants this season. I’m not a huge michael or crystal fan i think both of their albums would flop..crystal would be another taylor hicks and michael has ruben written all over him.