American Idol always adores a dramatic ending, and for the second set of trims to get to Season 13s Top 30, the drama came in the first minutes, as Alabama “brothers from another mother” Casey Thrasher and CJ Harris heard the decision after the deliberation after their “sing off” for a spot. The panel said they had picked Casey, a warm hug, but dejected face showing from CJ, before revealing that both would be going through to the top. Casey joyfully disclosed that he had enough of “your tricks” from the panel, but both young fathers have futures staked on this journey. Some were keeping tallies of those two made it through, but tensions got too tight for mathematics. Rejection and rejoicing were hand-in-hand through the doors of the holding room.
Marrialle Sellars had wowed the panel from her first audition in Detroit, and did a very decent job with her solo “sing for survival” rendition of “Wrecking Ball,” but that didn’t keep Harry Connick, Jr. from pointing out that “inconsistency” had plagued some of her performances. Still, her walk-in high heels across that hardwood floor got sweet from the news that she was Top 30. Jena Asciutto, that’s Jeeena with a long E, stuck with her original song, sung strong. Harry Connick, Jr. gave her news that she had a place at the top, calling her a sleeper, and she thought that was because she took a nap! Confidence and a voice that fills the auditorium have been part of the Caleb Johnson persona every since he showed up in Atlanta for his second try at an Idol run, But Keith Urban said he was “very Rock of Ages,” wondering if he was relevant in this competition. Caleb stood his ground as a singer, and took the 12th spot for the guys, and maybe offered too much information about his pants problem. Boyish Ethan Harris was another Atlanta hopeful, choosing Lonestar for his solo. Despite “tough moments” pointed out by the panel, Ethan is headed onward to LA. The hurt had hard for Sarina Joi Crowe, Nalani Quintalo, and David Oliver Willis, who was sure he had given his best, but it was not good enough.
Majesty Rose York has stood out to the panel since her Atlanta audition, and she’ll have the chance to shine in the Top 30 now. Briston Maroney wants to make every performance “count,” even when fearing that Harry Connick, Jr.’s tale of his failed plea as a 14-year-old to move to New York might mean he wasn’t moving on. Those fears were for naught, because Harry said he would be going for his big-city dream. Jennifer Lopez scolded “you are mean man” to her co-judge. Brandy Neally and Briana Oakley had delivered emotional, soul pouring performances, and both looked like princesses receiving news that they were going forward, declaring, “The ‘yes’ feels so good!” Kenzie Hall will be part of the Top 15 girls, her jazzy rap vibe proving a positive difference. Savion Wright has been a standout as a voice, and universal supporter of friends throughout the process. He waited seven years to make himself “ready” for this journey. Keith Urban praised that he came out as an original artist and “came walking in playing” from the start, but this time would not be his time to go for his dream. Heartbreak flowed through his tears and frustration, as he declared “I thought this was my time.” A bright future will come for this talented man with a beaming smile, and Ryan Seacrest was right in saying that he will be missed.
Austin Wolfe and Sandie Lee were called together to hear their verdict, good news for Austin, but so long for Sandie. The bittersweet of the moment added sour to the joy. Ben Briley , and Neco Starr have been joined since the Atlanta auditions, and both chose big songs for their solos-Briley doing “Stars,” and Starr taking on “Halo.” The choice for the panel was just too tough, and both voices definitely worthy of a spot, but very different. The last announcement of the night came, giving America the chance to vote for the final spot of the Top 30 between the two. The revelation will come next week, when the show will be aired Tuesday, Wednesday, and vote results Thursday. The climbing gets truly tough now!
American Idol broadcast, Thursday, February 13, 2014 FOX Networks.