March 17, 2011 03:16:12 GMT
Meanwhile, Pia Toscano continued to shine with a Whitney Houston song and Stefano Langone was given 'best performance of the night' comment from the judge.
"American Idol" Top 12 sang the songs from the year they were born. Naima Adepapo, born 1984, was the first to take the stage, selecting a rather bold song by Aretha Franklin. Her rendition of "What's Love Got to Do With It" was loved by Steven Tyler but deemed pitchy by Jennifer Lopez and Randy Jackson.
Paul McDonald was also born in the same year of Naima and he picked "I Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues" by Elton John. Jennifer is still loving his star quality but sensed that he was struggling on the performance. Randy advised him to get the notes right and Steven agreed with him.
Thia Megia, born 1995, once again threw a ballad performance by singing Vanessa Williams' "Colors of the Wind". Randy was bored and told her to do something different. Steven thought it was beautiful but did not show who she is as an artist. Jennifer went to the length of giving her tips on what to do next so that it won't feel too safe.
James Durbin was born in 1989 and according to his mom, he sang the "ABC" in a perfect pitch. James performed Bon Jovi's "I'll Be There for You" accompanied by a guitarist. Steven warned him not to get too "pop-y" while Jennifer said he was great enough to make her sing along. Randy praised him for making it his own version.
Haley Reinhart, born 1990, picked "I'm Your Baby Tonight" by Whitney Houston. Jennifer loved the singing but not the stage presence. Randy disagreed on her choice of song and said her vocal was just okay. Steven was itching to hear more bluesy tone from her.
Stefano Langone from 1989 blew away the judges with his rendition of Simply Red's "If You Don't Know Me by Now". Randy called it "best performance of the night" while Steven called it over the top beautiful. Jennifer gushed, "You could take this thing ...if you stay right there."
Pia Toscano was born in 1998 when Whitney Houston's "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" was a smash hit. Steven loved it so much that he said, "You are why the show is called American Idol." Randy even warned the others that Pia is in it to win it. Jennifer said Pia has an angel watching over her.
Scotty McCreery, born 1993, crooned to Travis Tritt's song "Can I Trust You With My Heart?". Jennifer said it was amazing and he "pushed it out there". Randy and Steven believed that he stayed true to himself and would be going places.
Karen Rodriguez from 1989 recovered from last week's critically-panned performance with Taylor Dayne's "Love Will Lead You Back". Randy said she was better than last week although it was a bit jumpy. Steven liked it when she played to her ethnicity while Jennifer thought Karen "attacked" it.
Casey Abrams, born 1991, screamed through "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana. Randy praised him as a crazy good artist but Jennifer thought it was a bit screamy. Steven said Abrams is "the goop the great stuff is made from."
Lauren Alaina, born 1994, sang "I'm The Only One" by Melissa Etheridge while battling flu. Randy thought the cold just made her voice sound better. Jennifer liked the fact that Lauren made it country and Steven called her a shining star.
The last act of the day was 1987-born Jacob Lusk who did a cross-gender version of Heart's "Alone". Randy noticed some missteps but called the performance genius. Steven said gospel has a baby named Jacob while Jennifer said Jacob is amazing to watch.
At the end of the episode, Ryan Seacrest said songs performed this week would be sold with the profits going to the Red Cross to help the people of Japan.