Y’all watched, right?
Byron Cage opened the show with “I Will Bless the Lord.” He looked all cool and casual with his jeans and blazer. I see you, dude! Too bad the contestants wore those cliché blue choir robes behind him.
As for the contestants’ performances, I think they were collectively weaker than last week’s contestants, but there were a few REAL gems in there. My thoughts:
Pete Robinson – “Through It All”: He was one of my faves from the auditions cuz I love his sincerity, but he sang the entire song a half-note higher than the melody. That may have been nerves, but it’s a problem. Nice dude, though, and I hope he gets more opportunities.
Y’anna Crawley – “For Every Mountain”: Though the arrangement never got around to the “for every mountain” part of it, it was a good performance that allowed her to showcase her INCREDIBLE vocal prowess. She gave it to the people and there’s no denying it. Me likey.
Maurice Griffin – “In The Midst Of It All”: ummmm. YESSIR! Reminds me of Micah Stampley, timbre-wise. I agree with the judges on his needing to connect more, but I think he’s reaaaally good.
Sharon Gomez – “Great Is Thy Faithfulness”: She seems like such a sweetheart, but this particular performance was just not on par with the other singers there. Still, I think there may be a place for her in the marketplace.
John McClure – “I’m Lost Without You”: I’ve always adored that song, so when I heard the opening CHORDS, I thought “please please please don’t mess this up.” And he didn’t! He had a really beautiful voice for it. I wasn’t thrilled with his ad libs, but he’s solid for sure.
And when Kirk had BeBe sing the first line real quick– dang it!!! THAT man. *rushin’ to listen to the original recording*
Crystal Holland – “Melodies From Heaven”: She did a really smooth, jazzy arrangement, and I LOVED it. But it didn’t feel like she meant it. That said, I like her a lot– great style, artist appeal, nice voice. I wanna see her again.
Ian Knighton – “The Presence Of The Lord Is Here”: The audience and the judges raved, but it felt kinda “Broadway showtune” to me. That’s probably a result of his vocal training, but it seemed scripted in a way. Still, he’s got a great voice and he’s got a lot of appeal, so we may see more of him.
Cekoya Burch – “In The Morning”: It’s a harder song to sing than many would think. The tempo of this particular performance seemed too fast for her because she seemed rushed and a bit pitchy, especially through the bridge. But she looked great and I really wanted it for her…
Dontavies Boatwright – “What The World Needs Now”: If the producers really are picking these songs for the contestants, I think they owe Dontavies a BIG apology. He wasn’t bad AT ALL– just didn’t like the song. But, he’s got a really nice voice and I’m excited to hear him do other songs.
Carolyn Johnson-White – “I Know I’ve Been Changed”: I was finna snooze until she modulated at that vamp and hit that high note at the end… Ma’am?? Ma’am!! And when she got to testifyin’, yooo… Good ministry there. We like you!
Twenty were chopped to ten, and they are:
Dontavies Boatwright, Latice Crawford, Y’Anna Crawley, Zebulon Ellis, Kalind Haynes, John McClure, Jessica Reedy, Clifton Ross III, Jeff Spain, Carolyn Johnson-White
My 5 faves: Jessica Reedy, Clifton Ross III, Y’Anna Crawley, John McClure, Latice Crawford