The January 7 episode showed the auditions that took place in Little Rock and San Francisco. The mother lode of talent proved to be in Little Rock.
Cameron Richard - A cajun kid who overcame a cleft palate, he sang "Give Me Love" by Ed Sheeran. J Lo loved the voice and passion. Something about his tone annoyed me. Not sure he'll get out of Hollywood Week.
Daniel Farmer - A student from Memphis, he declared he wanted to seduce J Lo. The build up made it seem like he would bomb, but he showed a lot of vocal control when he sang D'Angelo's "How Does It Feel." J Lo felt he was funny and sexy. I think he needs to ditch the grinding and tone down the antics.
Dalton Rapattoni - Wow, I found my new Idol crush! Dalton is a vocal coach at the School of Rock in Dallas. He was super cute with his big blue eyes, eyeliner and flowered Doc Martens. He sang "Phantom of the Opera" and played guitar, delivering a unique arrangement. Even Harry Connick Jr had to admit - "That guy was pretty." He looked like a new wave boy and definitely has teen idol potential.
La'Porsha Renae - She has an amazing afro and a voice that's just as big. She brought her baby to the audition and has escaped an abusive relationship. She sang "Creep" by Radiohead and put her own spin on it. She reminds me of Macy Gray. Harry called her "an assassin with runs."
Trent Harmon - He grew up on a farm that features its own farm-to-table restaurant. He sang "Unaware" by Allen Stone. The judges annoyingly talked through the beginning of his audition, expressing their disbelief that the country boy is actually an R&B signer. Harry said it was his favorite audition so far. I wasn't that blown away but he's good.
Brook Sample - This waitress from Tucson couldn't have been more irritating. They did a montage of her saying "Sorry" over and over while flubbing her interview segments. She sang "Cold Day in July" by The Dixie Chicks. Her nerves subsided when she sang, and the judges liked her. Harry told her she needs to stop apologizing, I hope she listens. Overuse of Sorry is really a very typical self-sabotaging habit for women.
Olivia Rox - A cute girl whose parents are musicians. She sang "When I Was Your Man" by Bruno Mars. She's likable and cute, with pink highlights in her hair, but I think she may be overshadowed by the larger voices in the competition.
Jessica Clark, Ameet Kanon, and Kayla Mickelson - These 3 were in a quick montage demonstrating that a lot of talented women were making it to Hollywood.
Melanie Tierce - This was a weird audition. Harry interrupted it by walking out after she sang a few notes, saying it was a yes from him but he needed a break. Keith got choked up. Harry returned to say it was one of best auditions in his 3 years. I don't like the tendency of these judges to interrupt or talk over the contestants.
Malie Delgado - She was Miss Alaska 2014 and is a radio morning show personality. She did a Gretchen Wilson song and showed that she was confident and likable. Judges felt she was already a star.
Brandyn Burnette - He played piano and sang an original song called "Lost." He's a cute kid from St Louis, who reminded me a bit of Bruno Mars. Harry snuck up and hugged him while he sang the final notes. Ryan Seacrest was filling in for Harry who was on yet another break, so Brandyn ended up getting 4 yes votes.
Kyrsti Jewel - Her family are idol groupies who have attended TV tapings and who for some reason still use a VCR and have a videocassette library of all the Idol shows through the years (come on, the show doesn't go back THAT far!). Lee DeWyze gave her a pep talk before she went in. The girl can really belt. I may have to forgive the weird spelling of her name.
Tristan McIntosh - They saved the most heartwarming audition for last. Tristan's mom is deployed overseas. She is only 15, but she displayed great maturity and talent, playing piano and singing "Why Baby Why" by Mickey Guyton. She's a pretty girl and J Lo pointed out her resemblance to Alicia Keyes, both in looks and in heart. Harry read an email from her mom and she started to cry and then they brought her mom out to surprise her. Keith cried. Everyone watching at home cried. J Lo said she might win.
Again, there was very little focus on bad auditions, and I'm glad.
Maddie McAllister - A cute girl who brought her state fair chicken to her audition and declared, "My chickens have the biggest breasts in Arkansas." She is only 16 and the judges felt she needed more practice.
Sarah Hayes - This girl seemed like she had a good voice but she was totally discombobulated. She sang "Hero" by Bonnie Tyler but quickly forgot the lyrics. She tried "Invincible" and stopped herself and apologized. Harry wanted to put her through anyway and, in a rare moment of self-awareness, blamed himself and the other judges for goofing around with her too much at the start of the audition, but the Keith and J Lo said no. I don't think she could have handled the pressure.
This episode got me excited as some definite talent was revealed. Plus Dalton is so dreamy!