From now to the finale the American Idol contestants will be making an effort to put their best foot forward. Some will do well and some will falter. This list is just my way of sharing the way I believe the rankings should fall out from week to week. Adam Lambert’s consummate performance in the Motown show puts him soundly atop the leader board, in my estimation, this week. However, he may stumble in a future performance and tumble back a few steps. There’s a great deal of talent in this season’s Top 9 so any one could come and wrest control of the top spot.
(1) Adam Lambert
Adam Lambert takes the top spot, this week, for obvious reasons. His performance of the, Smokey Robinson, classic “Tracks of My Tears” put him in a class by himself. While others were less than certain about his version of “Ring of Fire”, I thought it was handily done and reminiscent of The Doors. Adam does have a penchant for theatricality which Simon has pointed out on occasion. Though several questionable choices in Adam’s private life have come to light since he began his stint on Idol, I figure what he does on his time is his business. His willingness to get out of his comfort zone by playing it like the rat pack made his performance this past week both retro and contemporary. I admire Adam for pushing the envelope and delivering the goods. I am coming late to the Adam Lambert party so I’m anxious to see if he retains the top spot in my rankings as the contest progresses.
(2) Matt Giraud
Number 2 on my list but Number 1 in my heart is Matt Giraud. Sexy with a soulful swagger, Matt has been giving top notch performances each week. His ending up in the bottom three, last week, just shows how important it is to vote for your favorites. Having made the Top 10 secures him a spot on the Idol tour. His solid showmanship, confidence and stage presence make him a sure bet to be a favorite, especially with the ladies. He is either a master at making great song choices or he’s so talented that he makes singing whatever he’s given look effortless. Matt has delivered consistently great performances. If he continues to deliver the goods, he could definitely be a contender for the whole thing.
(3) Danny Gokey
Danny Gokey has to be the sentimental favorite. Coming to the show after the sudden death of his wife does engender a special place in the heart for him. However, Danny has talent and he delivers the goods most of the time. He’s got a great blued eyed soul style and when he’s on it’s hard to touch him. Just recently his focus seems to be off. This has been evident, the past two performances. During Grand Ol’ Opry week, he was aces on the chorus of “Jesus Take the Wheel” but seemed to founder during the verses. Even though his performance for Motown Week was better, it was still not up to my expectations for Danny. In order to remain a viable contender in the competition he needs to get back on track.
(4) Allison Iraheta
Allison Iraheta is a gem. At 16, she has the voice and presence of an old syle rock goddess. Her vocal style is reminiscent of Heart with a contemporary spin. She’s a throwback with great music sensibilities and the ability to make whatever song she chooses, her own. While rocker’s have advanced in the competition, they have yet to take the whole enchilada. Of course with the success of Daughtry, the whole enchilada might be a bit overrated. The exposure she’s getting as part of the Top 10 as well as the tour which will be kicking off shortly after Idol wraps, bodes really well for her chance at having a career in the music business. I’m anxious to see how she handles some of the upcoming Idol challenges.
(5) Anoop Desai
Anoop’s name is just cool. Anoop Dog in the house. With two solid performances since the “Beat It” debacle, has him showing that he’s a contender. A great hip hop style and a pure clear voice make Anoop a threat to the rest of the field. If he’s not careful, he can come sounding a little karaoke. To his credit, he’s been able to take the criticism and use to his benefit. If he’s successful with his song choice from here on, he’ll definitely be in the finals.
(6) Kris Allen
Kris is smart cookie. Quietly he’s been delivering performances that are true to his musical style. Because he’s an unassuming everyman, Simon tends to pick on him, but he’s extremely popular. Kris maintains a solid fan base and was number 1 on the American Idol facebook application rankings recently. Kris doesn’t have the swagger of Matt or edginess of Adam but he delivers songs that are contemporary and is as cute as a button. He could be the one to watch for the finals.
(7) Lil Rounds
Lil is an old school rhythm and blues belter. She’s what American Idol lives for. The fact that she’s this far down the list has a lot to do with poor song choice. Either that or she hasn’t prepared as well as she should. Whatever the case, Lil should be at the top of this list. She should be knocking the bottom out every week. She’s Simon’s favorite kind of singer and he’s been disappointed in her less than stellar showings. The fact that she didn’t shine during Motown Week was a shock. She has time to regain her momentum but things are getting tight and some of the performers are bringing their A games every show.
(8) Scott MacIntyre
Scott is an inspiration and a talent to be sure, but his mediocre showings in past weeks has his drive toward the finals in jeopardy. Scott has a musical style and in much the same way as Brooke White did last year, he’s remaining true to that musical vision. While remaining true to oneself is commendable, part of the show is about stretching to show versatility. Of course winning isn’t everything. However, if Scott is interested in staying in the competition he’s going to need to amp up his performance.
(9) Megan Joy
Megan has gone through several name changes. Perhaps now that she’s settled on a name she can adopt a style instead of the mish mash of cabaret meets camp that her performances have devolved into of late. She’s got a unique style and dares to be different. This wouldn’t be a bad thing if she was fulfilling the promise she had during earlier performances. Megan has some things going for her. She has a solid fan base and they are keeping her in the competition.
Tags:Adam Lambert Leads American Idol’s Top 9 Rankings