Nick Fradiani proves he can perform Arena Anthems on American Idol and might be able to win the show while proving extra small T-shirts aren’t just for kids either
A very revealing night on American Idol tonight, and I’m not talking about J-Lo’s dress.
Just when I think Clark Beckham and Tyanna Jones are running away with the show, Jax comes up with one of the best performances of the season, Rayvon Owen upsets Quentin Alexander in the Idol Sing Off and Nick Fradiani has suddenly become the hottest thing on the show, and I’m not talking about his HUNK CITY face teamed with a body that looked super jacked thanks to his schmedium T-shirt.
My story of the night it easy – it’s Fradiani.
He’s more than eye candy. He’s playing Idol better than anyone else on the show right now and he’s doing it without a “moment.” Wednesday he stepped up and performed the hell out of two very likable songs, did enough to change them so they didn’t sound like ripoffs and did so while making people more aroused than the 80 percent of breasts that J-Lo was showing.
At this point of the show, it’s about consistency. If you’re doing two songs, they both need to be good or you’re in trouble (or you’re Rayvon. More on that later). Nick, maybe more than anybody except Jax, is performing the exact type of music he’d record and that makes performing live way easier, or at least it looks that way.
He looked so smooth Wednesday night. He opened with such a cliché of a song – only cliché because I’ve been saying he’s a welfare Adam Levine since Week 1 and, of course, he did Levine (which I 100 percent guarantee he did because I Inceptioned him just like I did to Clark Beckham) – and something awful happened on the first note, the band and Fradiani recovered and boom, awesome performance of a song that normally makes me want to throw my head through a pane of glass became enjoyable.
And just in case that performance didn’t get the mommy crowd going the way he wanted them to go, Fradiani comes out and does “Maggie May” – just call it the Silver Bullet because it’s a guaranteed woman pleaser – and performs the hell out of it. He wasn’t Paul McDonald good, but that’s mainly because instead of a faux British accent he spent most of his budget on a dope hairstyle.
If you’ve been reading me, I’ve said this is how Fradiani is going to go deep on the show. He’s going to keep playing it safe, doing just enough to move up each week until he really needs to perform. Tonight he just stepped on the gas a little bit.
Give him the gold for the night ever-so-slightly above my BFF Clark Beckham – who was glorious covering a song that had nothing to do with the theme and then straight murdering Bieber – because the rest of the crew didn’t nail both performances the way the FradiCat did, unless you’re counting J-Lo’s boobs.
(It should be noted I may have to reconsider being BFF’s with Clark. For one, he’s super religious and I think he only likes me because I make him blush. I think I could hang out with Nick because we’re closer in age and I am an awesome wingman. Plus we live closer together and he seems down to try and drink 30 beers and listen to DMB on Spotify)
So Nick is flying high right now. He’s got a huge fanbase behind him – all the mommies want to bang him (can’t blame them) and he’s picking VERY neutral songs because dudes don’t mind what he’s bringing to the table because it’s the same stuff bar bands play. To stake a claim on a drunk older white women vote is a big deal.
He’s surviving the week, as is Clark and, if I had to guess, Jax. That leaves Rayvon and Tyanna Jones in the Bottom 2 and if there was a Twitter Fan Save Tyanna would go home because Rayvon is more unstoppable than Bo Jackson on Tecmo Bowl. No save, Tyanna is the Final 4.
And that sets up favorably for Nick. Rayvon’s fans are going to gravitate toward Tyanna and Nick (black folk and the adult contempary crowd) which means Jax or Tyanna is cooked. Jax’s votes are going to Nick but I think Tyanna’s would split between Nick and Clark (white dude with soul). All of a sudden Nick is Final 3, with momentum, and if he pulls a Kris Allen-type performance, he’s in the final. If he’s in the final, he wins.
Do I think Nick deserves to win? Depends.
Based on straight vocal and performance, Clark should win this thing running away but Nick proved he’s a much better contestant. I loved Clark doing something a little different Wednesday with the Bieber tune and despite the criticism – which I believe to be a result of producers saying “hey, let’s not let this guy run away with the title here” – he’s still in control. If Clark decides he wants to win, he’s got too much range to not win the damn thing.
The next biggest story of the night was the final Twitter Fan Save of the season. It was a welcomed addition to the show – unless you’re some wussy-boy entertainment weirdo who thinks everyone deserves a medal and you should never tell kids “no” – and really helped make sure better contestants didn’t get canned early.
Tonight wasn’t an easy call because after Rayvon put together one of the season’s better performances covering Sam Smith, then completely ruined Fleetwood Mac’s “Go Your Own Way.” I don’t think Quentin was outstanding with “Light My Fire” and while I appreciated his effort chasing “Shake It Out” by Florence and the Machine, you can’t try to sing a song done by the best voice on the planet.
I was all about #SaveQuentin because he showed more consistency. I didn’t love his second song, but it wasn’t bad; it just wasn’t good. He managed to have a good and a mediocre showing and for me, that was better than Rayvon’s awesome and horrible performances.
While he’s clearly unstoppable in Twitter Fan Saves, I don’t see Rayvon surviving next week. Tyanna was good enough – Heaven was beautiful; she hid a missed lyric on “Party in the USA” so well no one except this guy noticed – and Jax’s “White Flag” was so good I wish she saved it for later in the show (PS if she doesn’t sing “Empire State of Mind” next week she’s cooked; but if she survived and gets to the final three, then sings it? She wins Idol. Lock).
We’re headed for the best Final Four in American Idol history and tonight gave us a glimpse of what we’re looking at. As soon as I find out what the theme is, I’ll get to work on what the Idols should sing, but it would be much easier if one of my Idol followers (ahem) would just DM me the rest of the schedule.
Song by song review coming tomorrow. Friday I have a wedding (DRUNK CITY) and I’ll do a song selection blog Saturday.