It’s a good thing I’m not a betting man.
Because yesterday morning, when I suggested what songs the “American Idol” top 8 might — or should, or could — sing that night, I was a dismal two for eight. OK, technically I was 2.5 for eight, but man, the ones I got right were sooooo right.
I correctly predicted that preternaturally grizzled teenager Allison Iraheta might pick Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me,” and she did — and she killed it! I also speculated that if Lil Rounds were smart, she’d wrap those powerful pipes around Tina Turner’s titanic 1984 comeback hit, “What’s Love Got to Do With It.” It was the right call, but she failed to make it her own, which might have punched her ticket back home.
Now, I won’t lie — I was psyched that out of the thousands of songs these kids could have picked, I got even two right. But I’m also not going to tell you I think the ones I missed were necessarily the wrong call.
For my taste, Danny Gokey blew it by picking Mickey Gilley’s tame remake of Ben E. King’s classic “Stand by Me.” He totally should have taken my advice and done Prince’s “I Wanna Be Your Lover” and shown us a more dangerous side. Ditto to Kris Allen, who went with what Kara called a “jazz-funk homework” version of Don Henley’s “All She Wants to Do Is Dance,” when he would have brought down the house with my suggestion: Paul Young’s “Everytime You Go Away.”
Anoop did a’ight with Cyndi Lauper’s “True Colors,” but he would have impressed even more with something slinky, like Prince’s “Kiss” or Simply Red’s touching “Holding Back the Years.” And Scott MacIntyre? I can’t help you, bro. I don’t know why he’s still in the competition, what with the terrible singing and the even worse guitar playing and that terrible wedge ‘fro, but a Survivor ballad? Really? I would have taken REO Speedwagon or Phil Collins’ insipid faux-soul “Easy Lover” over that drivel.
I had picked Stevie Wonder’s “Part Time Lover” for Scotty Mac, but Matt Giraud did a nice job (do I get half a point for that one, since they were born in the same year?), so we’ll call that a push.
And then there’s the always unpredictable Adam Lambert. I would never have guessed he’d choose Tears for Fears’ “Mad World” (well, actually the “Donnie Darko” soundtrack cover by Gary Jules), but that dude just plain murdered it and I’m relieved he didn’t sing “Tainted Love” or Joan Jett’s “I Love Rock N’ Roll.” I’m happy to have missed that call.
So, 2.5 for eight. Not great, but hell, that still qualifies me to bat fourth for the Cincinnati Reds.