‘Idol’ kicked off its second week Jan. 22 with more unforgettable auditions — including a few that really blew us, and the judges, away! Jennifer Lopez, in particular, was left speechless by Bryan Watt and nearly in tears by Maurice Townsend!
Another week, another fantastic round of American Idol auditions! As ever, Jennifer Lopez looked radiant, Harry Connick Jr. was hilarious, and Keith Urban had delicately-highlighted hair and a New Zealand accent. There were some truly fantastic performances this week, including one that left Jennifer speechless and another one that nearly moved her to tears! See below for our top 5 most memorable performances of the night, and weigh in with your own picks!
‘American Idol’: Top 5 Auditions From January 22
1. Malaya Watson belted out a soulful performance of Aretha Franklin‘s “Ain’t No Way” that felt far older and more soulful than her scant 15 years. The judges actually thanked her for her performance! American Idol viewers certainly don’t see that happen very often. (Fun fact: Malaya plays the tuba in her school marching band! Her breath control will certainly be a big help to her in this competition.)
2. When Bryan Watt, 29, finished his rendition of Carrie Underwood‘s “So Small,” Jennifer couldn’t even speak she was so blown away! “I needed him to sing that song that way right now,” she told her fellow judges once Bryan left the room, golden ticket in hand. Bryan’s a bit older than a lot of the memorable contestants we’ve seen, and it was so refreshing to hear such an easy, confident performance from a person who clearly feels that they’re ready for the American Idol stage. Good luck, Bryan!
3. Melanie Porras, 19, opened with Michael Buble‘s “Fever”. Jennifer thought that her first song was a bit of a safe choice, and so Melanie decided to sing Bon Jovi‘s “Dead Or Alive!” Definitely not the safe route, but she rocked it. Keith made the point that most people would sing “Dead Or Alive” on guitar and “Fever” a cappella, but she did it the other way around! She must have done the right thing, though, since Harry told her that she already has “the seeds” and that she’s “on her way” to becoming a fantastic performer. Off to Hollywood!
4. “I don’t want to patronize you, but you’re absolutely adorable,” Harry told Jade Lathan, 20, after her performance of Amy Winehouse‘s “Back To Black.” Rocking a floral dress and a floral crown, we’re not sure that anybody was expecting the powerful performance she brought to the Idol stage. The judges sent Jade and her adorable self through to Hollywood, and we look forward to hearing what she sings next! (And whether she’ll keep the flower crown thing up. That’s quite a gimmick to keep going.)
5. Jennifer looked like she was nearly moved to tears by Maurice Townsend, 26, after a (literally!) breathtaking performance of John Legend‘s “So High.” The judges invited Maurice’s wife and four (!) children onto the Idol stage and Jennifer and Harry had one of Maurice’s sons give their father the good news — that he’s going to Hollywood! (Gosh, we really hope this works out for him. Not only does he deserve it, but four kids at 26? Four?? At 26???? Somebody cut him a cheque, please.)
Honorable non-performance mention: the interlude in which Harry played the part of an Idol hopeful to judge Keith, who sang “The Star Spangled Banner” and got Keith to sign his ankle before Harry hopped off the stage, ankle in hand, calling for his imaginary mother. The boys must get pretty bored as they wait for the habitually late Jennifer, but the viewers reap the rewards in more ways than one! Jennifer looks stunning every episode — let the girl have her time in hair & makeup!
HollywoodLifers, which of tonight’s auditions were your favorites? (You can tell us if it was Harry for his rendition of “Star Spangled Banner.”) Drop a comment with your thoughts below!
— Amanda Michelle Steiner