Sorry I’m so late on this but I was helping out my wife with a fundraiser for her nonprofit.
Joshua Ledet was eliminated tonight, creating a Jessica Sanchez/Phillip Phillips showdown for victory.
There were 90 million votes cast, which is pretty impressive.
This is the third year in a row we have a male/female combo. The past two years, the male won. A woman has not won since Jordin Sparks season six.
Why did Ledet get the fewest votes? My blog is not necessarily representative of the voters but his fans were not nearly as rabid as those for Jessica or Phillip.
The three judges and Jimmy Iovine seemed to favor Joshua. Jennifer Lopez will go down in “Idol” history with the most hyperbolic comment by saying Joshua had the best voice of the past half century. Nigel Lythgoe Friday morning admitted on Twitter that Joshua was his favorite, too. The judges gave him absurd numbers of standing ovations, lavishing praise over his voice, his stage presence, his ability to attack a song and really feel it. He had been in the bottom three once before but has generally stayed out of trouble. He was arguably the most consistent Wednesday night.
But as we talked about here time and time again, his gospel stylings (which some deemed “screaming”) turned a significant portion of the viewers off. With just three singers left, he was least able to build enough of a voter pool to overcome what has presumably been a Phillip’s lead (since he is the only singer who has not been identified as being in the bottom two. Note that last week, he may have stood next to Hollie Cavanagh but Ryan Seacrest never said he had the second fewest votes.)
[UPDATE: Lythgoe in a Twitter message Friday surprisingly noted that there was no clearcut leader throughout the competition, despite the fact Phillip has never appeared to be close to being eliminated. And the themes for next week:
1.The contestant’s favorite song of the series.
2. A song chosen by Simon Fuller.
3.The contestant’s individual winner’s single]
While I generally prefer Phillip, I am hoping Jessica wins for “Idol’s” sake. They need to stop the WGWG train, which has been dominant since season seven. I think winning is more beneficial for her than Phillip anyway.
Jimmy Iovine’s comments on each song:
Joshua “I’d Rather Go Blind”: Joshua had a good night last night. Not his best night but a good night. I think the judges were very generous on ‘I’d Rather Go Blind.” It was kind of right down the middle.. but didn’t show me where Joshua’s career might be going. Would I have given it a standing ovation? No.”
Joshua “Imagine:” I believe Joshua is the best showman we have in the competition right now. Tonight, he picked ‘Imagine’ by John Lennon which has a brilliant lyric but has a very simple melody. What he had to do was overcompensate with riffs and runs. To me, that didn’t work. It was slightly overblown. The song rests on its subtlety. It’s like putting a Ferrari on a racetrack and leaving it in first gear. It was not the right song for him.”
Joshua “No More Drama”: He needs the big moment. Last night, it was something missing. In fairness, I gave him a song that didn’t have enough melody. Joshua needs melody. I take 100 percent responsibility for that. Does Joshua belong in the finale? 100 percent. He should be in anyone’s finale
Jessica “My All”: I don’t think it came together enough.
Jessica “I Don’t Want To Miss a Thing”: The judges seemed to feel it came together at that moment. To be frank, I needed more than that… To win, she has to have the most magical moment so far.
Jessica “I’ll Be There”: Last night, I chose ‘I’ll Be There’ by Jackson 5… Jessica’s voice reminds me of one of the greatest voices in pop history in Michael Jackson. What I didn’t think of in choosing this song was that it was going to be two minutes and that in order to build it to a peak, she’d have to be two different people. She had to sing Jermaine’s part, then Michael’s part. I should have caught that. I think that hurt her. Does she deserve to be in the finals? I think she deserves to sing on the Grammys. She’s got an incredibly gift. If she gets in the finale, it’s about the songs.”
Philip “Beggin’ ” : Originally the Four Seasons, covered by MadCon. It was entertaining and fun. At this point, Phillip’s sound is becoming more and more original and less derivative of other artists. Did it steal the show? As one of three songs, it was no harm, no foul.
Phillip “Disease”: What I like about Phillip is he’s willing to risk everything and go down in flames just to experiment. I give it up for him for that. Last night, I agreed with the judges. It was a snoozefest. That song was not a strong enough song to sing at this point in this competition.
Phillip “We’ve Got Tonight”: Phillip won the night with Bob Seger’s “We’ve Got Tonight.” Hands down, it was his best performance he’s done in the entire contest. It was the best performance of anyone last night. He hit notes I never thought he could hit. I don’t think he thought he could hit them. But he was flawless. There is a dark mood and aching soul that he pulled out. I was genuinely knocked out. There was a depth I hadn’t seen all year.
“Idol” named three of the season 12 audition cities: Los Angeles, Chicago and Newark, N.J. Will they come back to Atlanta? Don’t know yet.
The Ford ads have not had Phillip in them for weeks. Word is: it’s doctor’s orders given his medical problems. He needs a day of rest.
By Rodney Ho, Radio & TV Talk