American Idol Recap 3/6/13: Curtis Believes He Can Fly

Curtis Finch, Jr. leaves everyone eating dust with a falsettoed, aggressive, note-holding “I Believe I Can Fly.” He gets four standing ovations from the judges, which weakens him with happiness. The guys’ semifinals’ night becomes old-fashioned night, as Devin Velez wins with  Spanified “It’s Impossible;” Lazaro Arbos, “Feeling Good;” and even last week’s front-runner Vincent Powell, the more current “End of the Road” by Boyz II Men. Elijah will get the tweenish 5th spot, although I’d rather give it to Nick.

The top 20 are:


  •  unemployed 19-year-old  Burnell Taylor of New Orleans, Louisiana
  • 17-year-old Student Charlie Askew of Little Rock, Arkansas
  • Sales Rep Cortez Shaw, 22, of Dallas, Texas
  • 24-year-old Choir Director Curtis Finch, Jr. of St. Louis, Missouri
  • Devin Velez
  • Elijah Liu
  • 21-year-old Ice Cream Scooper Lazaro Arbos, a stutterer from Naples, Florida, can hardly talk but sung seamlessly.
  • Nick Boddington
  • 22-year-old Paul Jolley of Palmersville, Tennessee, who was in Retail Sales
  • 29-year-old Praise Leader/Teacher Vincent Powell of Austin, Texas


  • Fil-Am Adriana Latonio
  • Amber Holcomb, 18
  • Angela Miller
  • College Student Aubrey Cleland of Westland, Oregon
  • Breanna Steer
  • From South Carolina, 22-year-old Adminstrative Assistant Candice Glover of Helena Island, who was cut in Vegas last year
  • 23-year-old Fitness Instructor Janelle Arthur of Oliver Springs, Tennessee
  • Demo Singer Kree Harrison, 22, of Woodville, TX
  • 28-year-old Promotional Model Tenna Torres of Queens
  • Habilitation Health Specialist Zoanette Johnson, 19. of Tulsa, OK (Oklahoma)

Tonight, the guys perform. 5 out of 10 make the Finals and on to the Summer Tour.

Judge Nicki Minaj sees Elijah Liu going the Kids on the Blockish route, with the appropriate merchandise: pillowcases, mugs and all. I agree with Judge Randy Jackson. Elijah’s “Stay,” which he was inspired to sing because of Rihanna’s Grammy performance, never quite got off first gear.

Cortez Shaw thought of doing “Locked Out of Heaven” by Bruno Mars after he saw Nick Boddington do it in Hollywood Week. Give the guy points for originality. And call me a racist, but black guys got the moves.

Charlie Askew teared up and headed backstage even before Host Ryan Seacrest could ask America to vote for him. He was a rock star with his classic rock song. I thought it strange that I enjoyed Cortez’s song and didn’t enjoy Charlie’s, until the judges gave Charlie what Judge Mariah Carey called “an earful.” Nicki reminded Charlie that she had told him not to change from his suit-and-sneakers image. He wears a tank top, earrings and sports a ponytail that makes him look an actress who I can’t put a finger on now.

Judge Keith Urban and I agree that Nick Boddington’s “Iris” by Goo Goo Dolls is beautiful. Wow. It would be wonderful to hear him on the piano in a 10-table hotel lounge overlooking the city lights. We really connected, but the other judges don’t like it. Mariah thinks that Nick’s Freddie Mercury was better. And one more thing: Ditch the feather, Boddington.

I was disappointed when I heard that Burnell Taylor was singing his audition song “I’m Here” From The Color Purple again, but I bite my tongue when I focus on him throughout the song. He gets a standing o from Keith and tears up Mariah again. Keith says that Burnell is believable and that if Keith were to hear Burnell on the radio, Keith would know that it is Burnell, who has a kiddie voice  mostly throughout the song, but has a low register as well. He is one of the worst-dressed contestant in Idol history, but that’s easy to fix.

I have nothing against gays, but I’m not ditching my boyfriend Jude Law for Paul Jolley, even though tonight’s performance is probably his macho-est. I really don’t mind emo, because I love Adam Lambert, despite Simon Cowell’s complaint that he was too theatrical. But there’s emotional tug, and there’s whiny. I don’t get how Nicki and Ryan bugging Keith to come right out and say what he thinks of Jolley’s performance. He obviously didn’t. Don’t you guys know him by now? He doesn’t spit it out. Mariah says that she didn’t know until tonight that Paul was going for pop-country.

Nicki and I didn’t like the idea of “Feeling Good” by Nina Simone, the death knell song of AJ Tabaldo and Leslie Hunt in Season 6. But the song suits Lazaro Arbos just fine.

R. Kelly’s “I Believe I Can Fly” is an auto-wince-tro for me, but I should have given Curtis Finch, Jr. a bit more credit. He gets a standing o from all four judges, leaving him teary and looking beaten, like someone had cleaned out his life’s savings. He pulls out all the stops: falsettos, aggression, note-holding, and puts a nail on the coffin of all other contestants. It’s time for everyone to pack up their bags, this is not working out, guys. And girls.

I don’t feel sorry for Devin Velez, coming after Curtis, because Devin always brings it. But his singing “It’s Impossible” makes me think that his mom picked his song. I get it when he code-switches to Spanish. Mariah thinks that he can tap an international audience. Like J. Lo and ex Marc Anthony? Nicki likes his Spanish Ken doll stance, and puts out all the Spanish words she knows.

I agree with Randy, Vincent Powell overshot “End of the Road” a bit. He was a bit off-key in the end, but the middle was smiley-smiley.

Voting starts at the end of the show, at (Voting is probably just available in the US, as I could not access the vote page):

Elijah Liu                 Call 1866 IDOLS 01 or 1866 43657 01 or text “VOTE” to 5701

Cortez Shaw            Call 1866 IDOLS 02 or 1866 43657 02 or text “VOTE” to 5702

Charlie Askew       Call 1866 IDOLS 03 or 1866 43657 03 or text “VOTE” to 5703

Nick Boddington Call 1866 IDOLS 04 or 1866 43657 04 or text “VOTE” to 5704

Burnell Taylor       Call 1866 IDOLS 05 or 1866 43657 05 or text “VOTE” to 5705

Paul Jolley                Call 1866 IDOLS 06 or 1866 43657 06 or text “VOTE” to 5706

Lazaro Arbos           Call 1866 IDOLS 07 or 1866 43657 07 or text “VOTE” to 5707

Curtis Finch, Jr.    Call 1866 IDOLS 08 or 1866 43657 08 or text “VOTE” to 5708

Devin Velez               Call 1866 IDOLS 09 or 1866 43657 09 or text “VOTE” to 5709

Vincent Powell        Call 1866 IDOLS 10 or 1866 43657 10 or text “VOTE” to 5710

That’s our recap of American Idol show today, 3/6/13. We’ll have another recap tomorrow. Check out our American Idol archive HERE.

Image Credit: American Idol