* American Idol S06E34

Erik’s American Idol Stock Picks.

My AI stock picks (explained here) for yesterday’s episode (in singing order):

  1. Phil Stacey – hold
  2. Jordin Sparks – hold
  3. Lakisha Jones – hold
  4. Blake Lewis – buy
  5. Chris Richardson – sell
  6. Melinda Doolittle – hold

And now, since the American Idol producers threw a wrench in the works with last week’s non-elimination show, I feel compelled to explain who I think is going home and why. Last week’s performance was part of the American Idol Gives Back special. As a result, about twice as many votes were cast. So this week’s results will be combined with last week’s results, and the contestants with the two lowest vote totals will be eliminated.

Giving each “sell” a -1, each hold a zero, and each “buy” a +1, my scores for last week were:

S06E32 Raw Scores

  1. Jordin Sparks = +1
  2. Blake Lewis = +1
  3. Melinda Doolittle = +1
  4. Chris Richardson = 0
  5. Lakisha Jones = 0
  6. Phil Stacey = -1

Now double those score to get my weighted total for last week:

S06E32 Weighted Scores

  • Jordin Sparks = +2
  • Blake Lewis = +2
  • Melinda Doolittle = +2
  • Chris Richardson = 0
  • Lakisha Jones = 0
  • Phil Stacey = -2

Doing the same for yesterday’s performance, we get this result:

S06E34 Raw Scores

  1. Phil Stacey = 0
  2. Jordin Sparks = 0
  3. Lakisha Jones = 0
  4. Blake Lewis = +1
  5. Chris Richardson = -1
  6. Melinda Doolittle = 0

Combining the last two weeks, we get this result:

S06E32 + S06E34 Weighted Scores

  1. Blake Lewis = +3
  2. Melinda Doolittle = +2
  3. Jordin Sparks = +2
  4. Lakisha Jones = 0
  5. Chris Richardson = -1
  6. Phil Stacey = -2

So I predict that Phil and Chris will be going home tonight. I would also not be surprised to see Lakisha going home.

And now some commentary on the performances themselves.

Phil Stacey – hold. I am not a Phil fan. I was shocked that he even made it to the Hollywood round, and I suspect that he did merely because it made for good television. Navy singer turned absentee dad makes it to next round on American Idol. But he has this odd, grating tone to his voice, the kind that made the judges say (during his audition) that he doesn’t start songs well. I would add that he doesn’t sing songs well, but that’s just me. Is he marketable? In what genre? I don’t think that Phil is what the AI producers had in mind when they envisioned the ideal American Idol. He sang better than I expected last night, so that’s why I gave him a “hold.” But he wasn’t great. Never has been.

Jordin Sparks – hold. Jordan didn’t sing her Bon Jovi song well, but she took the criticism well and was smiling the entire time. Plus during her taped segment with Jon Bon Jovi, she said that her mom grew up listening to Bon Jovi music, which was simultaneously hilarious and adorable. She sang great last week, and even if you think she deserves a “sell” this week, that would still leave her in the top three. Unlike the others, Jordin is the embodiment of what one would consider the ideal American Idol: young, talented, personable, and marketable.

Lakisha Jones – hold. I think Lakisha is a very good singer, but she has consistently proven that she is unwilling or unable to take the advice of the judges or the celebrity coaches. She sang a ballad and was off key for much of it. Only Randy pointed this out. She is a strong singer, but she is not the strongest singer or performer in this group.

Blake Lewis – buy. Last week, I finally figured out who Blake Lewis reminds me of: Beaker from The Muppet Show. I liked The Muppet Show. I liked Beaker. I like Blake. I liked his modern spin on the Bon Jovi classic “You Give Love A Bad Name.” During rehearsal, it was not clear than Jon thought this was a good idea. But during the performance, it was clear that Blake hit a home run. A completely original, memorable, modern performance of an 80s classic. The morning after the performance, Blake’s is the only one I can remember.

Chris Richardson – hold. I don’t dislike Chris’s singing style, but I don’t like it either. During his audition, Simon said “The girls are going to love him.” I think they ended up loving Sanjaya more. So Chris sang a song and it was OK.

Melinda Doolittle – hold. Melinda is an enigma, wrapped in a riddle, shrouded in mystery. She consistently sings her songs in key but is somewhat predictable in how she emotes. As a result, I don’t remember last night’s performance, except that she was off-tempo (a first for her) in the final portion of the song (either ahead or behind by about a quarter beat), something which none of the judges picked up on. Yes, that’s a small complaint. So it was good but not great. I’m sure she will have a successful recording career.

Since the AI producers seem to love theme nights, I think that they should reprise the classic episode of the 1970s “The Gong Show” where every single contestant sang (or attempted to sing) the schmaltzy ballad “Feelings” by Morris Albert. Now that was a funny show!

I think that my friend Rick Klau from FeedBurner will like this post. Hello Rick!

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