After James' somewhat surprising elimination, it was down to the final 3 and 3 songs ... the contestant's pick, Jimmy Iovine's pick, and the judges' pick. I am hoping that Haley did enough to squeak herself into the final, if not it is going to the be the most snoozy/vanilla IDOL finale in history if it's Scotty and Lauren. That said, of these three... and pretty much of the entire cast this year... think Scotty has the best chance at a successful career.
#1/#4/#7 - Haley (What Is and What Never Should Be/You Ought Know/Rhiannon): Haley was a breath of fresh air in a fairly snoozy night of country music. Her first song, that Led Zeppelin number (which I have to admit I was not familiar with), was certainly her best as I thought she struggled on her lower register with the other two songs, getting a bit mumbly... but when she opened up, she kicked butt.
#2/#3/#6 - Scotty (Amazed/She Believes in Me/Are You Gonna Kiss Me or Not): Scotty is Mr. Slow (and Low) and Steady, Mr. Dependable, Mr. Consistent and continued to churn out those performances... not sure he's going to reach Carrie Underwood heights in the country arena, but I think he might make a bit more of an impact than folks have been doing the past few years. All the songs were a bit schmaltzy, but heck that's Scotty!
#5/#8/#9 - Lauren (If I Die Young/Wild One/I Hope You Dance): Will continue to beat a dead horse, and say that Lauren is just a few years removed from being one of the kiddie pageant kids with her hair all teased up and the make-up on and trying to act like an adult. Now she is a genuine and sweet girl, but as I kept saying think she needed as few more years to develop. Heck, at the audition that the re-showed she had more edge than the goop she's been doing on the show. I thought "Die Young" was best since she had a moment, but the others were too put-on... and while she sang "Dance" pretty nicely, my pet peeve was that it's a song you sing TO a 16-year old, not a song sung BY a 16-year old (but then again, she's been waiting all her life for this).
Elimination prediction: Think I have made it clear, Scotty seems a sure thing... and we need to keep the Growler to keep things interesting...