'American Idol' Recap: Top 9 Perform

By Daniela Duron,

The final 9 contestants on American Idol took the stage to perform Wednesday night, and this week they had to take on Beatles songs.

Before the performances get started, Aubrey Cleland and Charlie Askew come out on stage to learn the voting results of their sing-off. Cleland learns she is the winner, which means she will be a part of the Idol summer tour.

Kree Harrison is up first, and she sings “With A Little Help From My Friends.” All four judges love it, with Randy Jackson saying, “It was a great way to start the show, you came out and you blew the vocals out of the water. You said, ‘Hey guys, whoever comes after me, y’all gotta work.’” Mariah Carey also adds, “I didn’t think it was good. I thought it was fan-freakin-tastic. It was kreely amazing.”

Burnell Taylor then sings “Let It Be,” and although he says he isn’t very familiar with the song, he still ends up wowing the judges. Nicki Minaj says, “You didn’t even sing the song. You caressed it. You treated it like it was newborn baby. You were so delicate with it … I think this has to be said again about both you and Kree. The fact that you guys are such new artists but you are keeping your own artistry even when you are doing these big songs is amazing. That is amazing. That shows that you are really smart artists.”

Amber Holcomb is next with her performance of “She’s Leaving Home.” Carey, who along with Holcomb admits she didn’t know the song, tells her, “For someone who didn’t know the song and to come perform it in such a fearless way is fantastic.” Meanwhile, Keith Urban says that’s his all-time favorite Beatles song and that she performed it “beautifully.”

Lazaro Arbos then performs “In My Life,” but it’s not a big hit with the judges. Jackson tells him, “Honestly, for me, I think that was your worst performance ever. It was out of tune from beginning to end. I’m just starting to wonder, where did the vocals go?” Minaj also adds that the confidence he once had is gone, and the critique from all judges has Arbos end up in tears.

Candice Glover is next, and she sings “Come Together.” Urban says, “I love seeing you in this whole over side tonight. We saw some rock chick side of you that was really cool tonight. You could’ve gone even crazier with it vocally because your range is off in the stratosphere.” Jackson adds, “I was so happy to see you do an up-tempo because a lot of singers like you with big voices are always doing ballads so people think people with big voices can’t do up-tempos … You can own because you got it.”

Paul Jolley follows by singing “Eleanor Rigby.” Minaj says, “I did not like your performance. You know why? Very, very safe, very bland and forgettable.” Jackson adds, “My thing, for me, is I thought you were disconnected from the song. You never really connected vocally to it.”

Angie Miller then sings “Yesterday.” Carey says, “I feel like you did a very respectful version of the song, if that makes sense. But I felt like what you did was very respectful, you showed your voice. You showed simplicity. But, like Randy said, there’s that rock side, I would love to see that part more.” Minaj also adds, “Unbelievably amazing. What I thought was you had really, really, really good key all the way through. You’re amazing.”

Devin Velez then sings “The Long and Winding Road.” Carey tells him, “You really never cease to amaze. I don’t have words for this. That was just so good, you’ve sung so many different types of music and I don’t feel like you’ve disappointed us, ever. It would really be a travesty if you did not go through.” Jackson adds, “I think Devin is back tonight. I’ve been wondering where that swagger was. Because you got that R&B flavor in your voice. That was great tonight, very nice.”

Janelle Arthur then finishes the night with her performance of “I Will.” Urban says, “I loved that you chose that. Much like with Kree, you have this country thing in your voice that’s present in the most beautiful way. You know who you are, you’re pure, you’re true, that was really, really beautiful.” Minaj also says, “You are great, little girl. You are great. You don’t have to yell and scream. You pulled us in with such a subtle performance. Everything is so honest about you, I love it.” Jackson also adds that it was “one of the best performances of the night.”

After another week of performances from the finalists, it’s again apparent that the girls are much stronger than the guys. Tomorrow one contestant will go home based on America’s votes. Who do you think it will be?



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