Paula Abdul. Randy Jackson

American Idol Recap: Motown Night

The top 11 American Idol contestants took on Motown this week. It is an important week for the contestants because the 10 who make it to the next round will go on the summer tour.
Casey Abrams took the stage first and sang ‘I Heard It Through the Grapevine.’ Randy Jackson called him a “true original” and Steven Jackson praised his perfect pitch.
Thia Megia stepped up her game with ‘Heat Wave.’ Randy loved that she took a chance with something different. Jennifer Love urged her to connect with the lyrics and put on more of a performance.
Jacob Lusk earned a hug from Steven for his rendition of ‘You’re All I Need to Get By.’ Randy called it his best performance yet.
Jacob may have gotten a hug from Steven, but Lauren Alaina earned one of his creative phrases. After her rendition of ‘You Keep Me Hanging On,’ Steven declared she “ripped that song another beauty mark.” Jennifer and Randy loved the attitude she put into the performance.
Stefano Langone sang ‘Hello’ and judges had no complaints about his vocals, but they urged him to connect with the lyrics emotionally next time.
Hailey Reinhart bounced back with ‘You Really Got a Hold On Me.’ Randy thought the start was a little rough and the middle got better. Jennifer said she has the most soulful voice of the girls.
Judges loved when Scotty McCreery hit low notes in his rendition of ‘For Once In My Life.’ Randy dubbed him a “young lady killer.”
Pia Toscano delivered another perfect ballad this week. She sang ‘All In Love Is Fair.’ Judges had no criticism for the vocals, but they want her to try something different. Randy hopes she will try something more up tempo next week. Jennifer encouraged her to “own” the stage.
Paul MacDonald sang ‘The Tracks Of My Tears.’ Jennifer called him the “complete package” while Randy praised his distinctive voice and unique tone.
Naima Adedapo impressed judges with her rendition of ‘Dancing In the Street.’ Jennifer loved the dancing and Randy agreed that everything worked this week.
James Durbin gave another impressive performance. He sang ‘Living For The City.’ Randy thought he was “unbelievable” by the end of the song. Jennifer said the performance left her speechless.

Simon Cowell is a Fan of New-Look American Idol

Movie mogul Simon Cowell has broken his silence about the new season of American Idol – and he’s a big fan.

The Brit quit as a judge on the show last May (10) and his departure prompted an overhaul of the talent contest.
Rocker Steven Tyler and singer/actress Jennifer Lopez were hired and, together with fellow judge Randy Jackson, they’ve spiked ratings and become a critical sensation.
And now Cowell admits J.Lo and Tyler have revamped the talent contest – and he likes what he sees.
In a taped interview with newsman Piers Morgan, which will air on CNN next week (14Mar11), Cowell says, “I personally think it is a better show than last year. I genuinely do. I think what they’ve got is that it feels to me that they’ve got their energy back, that they’re confident, that they’re competitive.”
And he admits the show was slowly dying when he decided it was time to quit, because it no longer featured the original three judges – himself, Jackson and Paula Abdul.
He adds, “I always think of Idol really as me, Paula, and Randy, and I think when other people were brought in, and Paula wasn’t there, it was, to me, like being on a different show… weird atmosphere.”
Cowell is now planning to take over TV again with a version of his hit British show The X Factor, which will launch later this year (11).