Tonight’s songs were California Dreaming (anything involving California, song or artist), and songs the last four  contestants wish they had written.

Phillip sans guitar started things off with Credence Clearwater Revival’s “Have You Ever Seen the Rain?”  Sounding good, it fit his style and the judges gave him high praise.

Journey’s epic ballad, “Faithfully” was sung by a nervous Hollie.  It was not her best, which may spell trouble.  The judges disagreed with my opinion, so perhaps she’ll be able to reel in the votes.

After a quick word about the lyric contest with Jason DeRulo, (check the American Idol website for more info), Joshua took on one of the most make-you-cry-in-an-instant songs, Josh Groban’s “You Raise Me Up”.  Though no one compares to Groban’s version, Joshua did an amazing job.  The beginning was a bit rushed, but it worked itself out.  The judges enjoyed it.

Jessica sang legendary jazz great Etta James with her rendition of “Steal Away”.  The song seemed way too old for her, but her vocals were on point.  The trio of judges loved it.

Phillip and Joshua were once again teamed up for a duet, performing Maroon 5’s “This Love”.  One thing was clear, the girls LOVE Phillip, screaming for him whenever it was his turn.

Hollie and Jessica sang the duet “Eternal Flame” by the Bangles.  You could tell the friendship that Phillip and Joshua shared on stage was missing from these two and both tried to outshine each other resulting in an awkward performance.

A preview of the promising movie Rock of Ages was shown, (see the musical!  It was EXCELLENT!) followed by the remaining four idol hopefuls singing “Waiting For A Girl Like You” by Foreigner.  The performance was messy as the vocals didn’t blend well at all.

“Volcano” by Damien Rice was Phillip’s song wish, and he did a great job.  He played the instrument this time around, showing how much more comfortable he is with the guitar.  He appeared to feel the lyrics and melody and the female guest vocalist added a nice tone to the song.  High praises were given from the judges, with Jennifer Lopez saying it was one of the most poignant moments of American Idol.

Hollie puzzlingly picked Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me”.  She did a sweet job, but the judges disagreed.  Randi Jackson gave the obvious criticism, saying it was the wrong kind of song and she was a different kind of singer from Bonnie Raitt.

Joshua’s gift to his mother was “It’s A Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World” by the Godfather of Soul, James Brown.  Barring any disastrous results, the kid is mere weeks away from taking the title of American Idol.  Steven Tyler declared his performance to be the most passionate rendition of that song of all time.

Determined to have the night’s spotlight, Jessica took on the Dream Girls’ mega-hit by Jennifer Holiday, “You’re Gonna Love Me”.  I still don’t, but others do, like the judges.  It fell short of Jennifer Hudson’s Oscar show-stopper, however, feelings of arrogance aside, Jessica deserves to be in the final two for sure.  Like J.Lo said, it will be a race to the finish.

 
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