This time I took notes. See?
I’m going to leave out a lot of the shenanigans.
Opening medley was just Jena and Caleb. Caleb started with We Are The Champions, and I kinda lost it. Because Queen sang that with Adam and Kris on that stage. And while I don’t care about competition performances, it’s just wrong for the finale. Also, hearkens back to another rocker. There will be more of that.
Jena sings “I’m Just a Girl” and they join together with “It’s Only Love.” And it was fun.
Judges arrive, Ryan worships at the altar of JLo. Keith is wearing a suit.
Sam arrives on stage, playing Phillip Phillips’ “Home.” P2 joins him, and segues into his current single “Raging Fire,” which he actually debuted on Idol this year. I have to admit, I didn’t notice the song changed for at least a verse.
Jennifer Nettles takes the stage to sing “That Girl,” and is joined by Jessica to sing Miley Cyrus’ ”Wrecking Ball.” It was good.
Then Jlo took the stage, meaning they showed her performance that she taped the night before. She pretended to sing and she danced.
KISS. Singing with Caleb. And I can’t help comparing it to their performance five years ago. Adam, in a brown leather outfit with a studded shoulder frame work, rhinestones around his eyes and his own six inch platform boots, sang “Beth” with a saucy eyebrow lift. And when he joined the band, he fit in visually – not an imitation or a parody, very much still Adam – and vocally.
Visually, Caleb looked like a mascot (from my Twitter feed). Flat shoes, jeans and a jacket. I think black leather would have made a difference. And vocally – I don’t know. Didn’t work for me. They sang “Love Gun” and a song I didn’t get.
Aloe Blacc is to sing with the Top 13 guys minus Caleb. He starts alone with “I’m the Man,” and continues with the boys. It’s really off, especially CJ.
Jena and Caleb each get Mustangs, plus their musical mentors get Fusions.
Demi Lovato appears to sing with the girls minus Jena and MK. MK is too ill to perform. I honestly don’t recognize two of the women. They sing “I’m Really Gone” and “Neon Lights.” They’re better than the boys.
Jena starts singing Paramore’s “Decode” with the piano, and is joined by the band, with “Ain’t It Fun” plus a lot of very large yellow balloons. They sound fine, but we can’t see them.
John Legend appears with a piano to sing “You and I,” and then “All of Me” with Malaya. She is very off, but she looks very pretty with long hair and no braces.
Alex and Jason Mraz join up to sing Jason’s “Love Someone” and it’s really lovely, with beautiful harmonies. Highlight of the night, I think.
This next is shenanigans, but I can’t leave it out. Ryan – yes, Ryan – sings “Right Here Waiting For You.” Badly. And then he’s joined by Richard Marx. Who sings it very well.
Darius Rucker (aka Hootie) sings “True Believer” by himself, and is joined with Dexter and CJ to sing “Alright.” As a product of the seventies, that pains me. Should be “All Right.” Anyway, it was fine.
Jena and Caleb introduce Lady Antebellum with an a cappella lyric of “Need You Now.” The band, singing by themselves, perform “Bartender.”
Then we see the judges and Randy perform (or at least their recording from the previous night). Harry on baby grand piano, Keith on guitar, Randy on bass. Jlo sits on the piano to sing “True Colors” in a high voice. Then Harry switches to electric keys, Jlo grabs a tambourine and they sing “Go Your Own Way.”
I expected a train wreck, but it really wasn’t. It was fun.
We return to see the judges in their performance clothes, to get the results.
And it’s Caleb.
I was kinda hoping for Jena. He’s very talented, but in a specific genre. She’s still growing, but very versatile. Could have gone either way, and I wasn’t invested in anyone. So, congratulations, Caleb. You’ll do fine. Especially if they actually release your album August 12 as promised. They promised Candice that, too.