‘American Idol’ Recap: Top 10 Perform Billy Joel Songs
On tonight’s (March 21) episode of ‘American Idol,’ the Top 10 were asked to sample from Billy Joel‘s songbook, with Diddy serving as the mentor. While many of the songs came out when the contestants were young (or not even born yet), they all rose to the occasion and did interesting things with Joel’s songs.
Randy Jackson’s mantra for the evening was “Those who can, should!”
Designer Tommy Hilfiger was there during rehearsals, dispensing fashion and imaging advice, helping hopefuls improve their styles.
Here’s PopCrush’s breakdown of Billy Joel night, which was full of ballads.
Deandre Brackensick: The wild-haired one sang ‘Only the Good Die Young,’ a song so fun that you must not have a pulse if you don’t enjoy singing it. It was upbeat and island-y, as we expect from Deandre, but it was not great. [Watch it here]
Joshua Ledet: Last week’s runaway superstar put his stamp on ‘She’s Got a Way,’ looking like a dapper gentlemen in his black suit. The judges were split on the performance, with J Lo saying it didn’t feel like his own, while Steven Tyler said he sang the “sweat” out of it. [Watch it here]
Phillip Phillips: The always unique Phillips sang ‘Movin’ Out,’ delivering a raspy vocal while strumming his guitar. It was yet another quality gig for him and his guitar, which is a part of him. He ignored Diddy’s suggestion to strip away the guitar and Hilfiger’s advice to dress up. Even so, he “Phillip Phillipsed” that jam and everyone loved it. [Watch it here]
Heejun Han: The resident comedian performed ‘My Life,’ in one of the episode’s few upbeat numbers. He added his lively charm, and his voice sounded okay, but again, he doesn’t shatter the earth. He was actually most entertaining during his pre-performance, saying that Madonna and Michael Bolton were his style icons. The judges sense that he isn’t taking it seriously and needs to eventually. [Watch it here]
Erika Van Pelt: EVP tackled ‘New York State of Mind’ and this native Rhode Islander needed to sing it like she was a New Yorker in Yankee Stadium. She chopped off her hair to show off her face at Tommy Hilfiger’s advice and she exercised restraint, without over-singing the song. She can, so she did. [Watch it here]
Elise Testone: The perennial bottom-dweller chose an obscure song in the form of ‘Vienna,’ with Diddy suggesting she start with the mic on the stand and then take it off to create some magic. Her smoky pipes were top quality on a song that was not easily recognizable and she got a judge’s panel standing “O.” [Watch it here]
Hollie Cavanagh: The balladeer sang ‘Honesty,’ which she needed to click with, given the heft of the material. She was a bit pitchy, likely a result of overthinking but the judges like her choices, which are big songs. [Watch it here]
Jessica Sanchez: The odds-on favorite sang ‘Everybody Has a Dream,’ and Diddy said he didn’t believe her and she needs to stop over singing. Well, the mini-diva took those words to heart and nailed it when she performed. It was pure power. [Watch it here]