by Lyn Jensen
Since American Idol quit having results shows, the format changed so that the field is now reduced mid-program. Wednesday night the top three singers introduced their debut singles–should they win–and then Ryan Seacrest announced the final two:
1/1. Trent Harmon sings “Falling,” a cool jazz piece.
1/2. Dalton Rapattoni gets the girls screaming at his performance of “Strike a Match,” which rocks in a 1985-MTV way.
1/3. La Porsha Renae sings “Some Days,” contemporary R&B, and proclaims, “A woman started it and a woman’s gonna finish it.” The woman that started it being Kelly Clarkson, could La Porsha be the woman who finishes it?
She gets closer to finishing it when Seacrest reads the name of the third place finisher: Dalton. That means La Porsha jumped a slot from last week, when Dalton was in the top two and she was in the bottom two.
Some Internet bloggers are absolutely certain the last American Idol is going to be Trent, but others are absolutely sure it’s going to be La Porsha. Both have sentimental backstories–she’s a young mother with a troubled past, he’s a farmhand and waiter who needs his big break. Several white Southern guys have won Idol but so have several black R&B diva types. Which will get the most votes? Maybe their final Idol performances will offer a clue?
2/1. Trent sings, “If You Don’t Know me by now,” a song Idol producer Simon Fuller selected for him. It exactly matches his jazzy, bluesy, white-soul style. The judges agree there’s a battle starting.
2/2. La Porsha sings Fuller’s selection for her, Dionne Warwick’s “A House is Not a Home.” She does measure up to Warwick’s vocals. Harry says, “Great lyric and interpretation.” Keith tells her it’s the kind of song he needs a drink and cigarette for.
The episode that cuts the top three to the top two lasts an hour. There’s time left for two more songs, and the top two are asked to revive songs they sang earlier in the season:
3/1. Trent goes back to his performance of Sia’s “Chandelier.” He demonstrates roughly the same vocal appeal as Season 10 winner Scotty McCreery, except McCreery was a country baritone and Harmon’s a white-soul tenor. Harry comments voters have the hardest decision in Idol history. Keith counters that maybe, given the way Trent moved between chest and head notes, maybe the decision is easy.
3/2. La Porsha sings a Rhianna song, and the judges praise her control and composure. “Beautiful job!” says Keith. Should she have sung her very memorable version of “No More Drama” instead? We’ll find out when the final announcement happens tonight.
I was going to vote for La Porsha but the line was busy, busy, busy. I have no idea if Trent’s phone line was the same way or not.