When Aaron Kelly began the night with his Long and Winding Road, some of us die hard Beatle loyalists, no doubt began to have furrowed brows. His vocals were on target has ever, but there was not enough emotion in the delivery to keep his long from being slow enough to try even the patience of Lawrence Welk.
Things soon got brighter though, as Katie Stevens gave herself a needed shot of redemption with her moving Let It Be. Andrew Garcia belted out a bubbly Can’t Buy Me Love that out played to his strengths, and even Kara DioGuardi noted the nice change ups on his guitar accompaniment. Soon no one was brushing sleep from his or her eyes!
The shining performances of the night, though, began with Michael Lynche performing the classic Eleanor Rigby with such a sharp, biting arrangement and heartfelt conviction that the song could be a hit next week. The man has soul in more ways than one, for sure.
The resounding tones of the didgeridoo introduced front-runner Crystal Bowersox’s Come Together, and head cold notwithstanding, she gave the hippie anthem her own brand of passion and grace. I hope the guy recovers from all that blowing!
Casey James was vulnerable and authentic in his take of John Lennon’s Jealous Guy, a gem of a song that I felt proud of him for choosing. His stripped acoustic picking without any orchestration only made his performance more moving and valid, and the judges concurred.
Siobhan Magnus, too, went off the beaten trail with her choice of Across the Universe, a selection she was forced to defend to Simon Cowell, which she did with graceful honesty.
Her performance was solid, but it is another song that is hard to hear in its intent from anyone other than John Lennon, although Ellen pointed out another remix version by Rufus Wainwright.
Tim Urban pulled out every stop to hearken back to re-create the Beatlemania image of Paul McCartney with All My Loving, and likely squeezed out just enough votes from his followers for another week of salvation.
Lee Dewyze was powerful in his guitar version of Hey Jude, showing more confidence and exuberance than anyone had fell from him before, but the showmanship of a impromptu bagpiper descending the lighted staircase distracted from the performance rather than cap it as the show closer for the night.
American Idol telecast, April 6, 2010 Fox TV