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American Idol Elimination Shocker

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Be aware, there are spoilers below (like immediately below).

Murfreesboro, Tenn. native Colton Dixon was revealed to be the lowest vote-getter during last night’s American Idol results show.

Well, that was certainly unexpected.

AMERICAN IDOL: Eliminated contestant Colton Dixon performs on AMERICAN IDOL airing Thursday, April 19 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. CR: Michael Becker / FOX.The 20-year-old singer who performed Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance” and Earth Wind & Fire’s “September” Wednesday night told the judges after his elimination, “I wasn’t myself last night, and I get it, and I appreciate what you told me last night. I’ll take that when I’m making a record.”

I thought Colton would be going all the way to the finale with either Phillip Phillips or Jessica Sanchez. The conspiracy theorist in me can’t help but to think that he got the boot to make way for one of the ladies to win it this season. How else can you explain a contestant that has been building a solid fan base since season 10 and was considered a season 11 front-runner getting ousted in the Top 7?

I’ll admit that I was really surprised to learn Wednesday afternoon that Colton would be performing a Lady Gaga song that night, but I thought he really pulled off a solid performance. It was a different kind of song than what most would expect from Colton, but I actually kind of appreciated that he was willing to challenge himself with riskier song choice.

Unlike the judges, I felt that the stronger of Colton’s two performance’s Wednesday night was “September.” Steven Tyler thought he should have gone with a song that showcased his voice a little more. Randy commented, “You sound good, but it’s not exciting as we would’ve have liked.”

I thought Colton executed an extremely original and fresh take on a song that I wouldn’t have pegged him to sing. He had a strong vocal performance, which included some very clean and powerful drawn out notes. I thought “September” showcased his vocal ability quite nicely.

Judges comments aside, I have a bone to pick with Idol’s in-house mentor, Jimmy Iovine. Wednesday night during the video package before Colton’s performance of “Bad Romance,” Jimmy talked about the singer needing “to hit a high when the chorus comes in” and the only advice we hear him solicit is to “get the arrangement right with the band and be careful of the tempo.”

Here’s the thing, last night during the results show, Jimmy said that he didn’t like anything about Colton’s performance of “Bad Romance” and in order to get to the finale, he needed to “regroup and find better songs.” And therein lies my issue.

Why does the audience always find out how much Jimmy doesn’t care for the contestant’s song choice after the fact? He’s their mentor, and he should be bringing issues he has with their song choices during rehearsals. Not that I want to see him shoving his own song choices for the contestants down their throats, but maybe there needs to be more of a collaboration process with Jimmy and contestants when it comes to picking songs each week. He’s not doing them any favors by telling them what he thinks about their song choices after the fact, by then it’s too late. And in this case, one of the strongest and vocally consistent contestants of the entire season was sent home prematurely.

With the elimination of a perceived front-runner last night, it will be interesting to see how the rest of the competition pans out. With so much talent this season, the American Idol title is really anyone’s for the taking. 

Let’s hear it, y’all! What did you think about Colton Dixon’s elimination this week? And, do you feel Jimmy Iovine needs to express his concern about the contestant’s song choices prior to them taking the Idol stage?


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About Kirsten Coachman

Kirsten Coachman is a writer and editor from the San Francisco Bay Area. Visit her long-running music blog, Wait...WHAT, at waitwhatmusic.net. Follow Kirsten Coachman on Twitter: @KirsCoachman
  • Sherry

    Jimmy has expressed concern about song choice before the performances in past weeks. Ultimately the contestants pick their own songs, and it’s up to them to make the right choice. If they are influenced (which happened during the Whitney Houston week) they can blame the mentor, producers etc for getting in the bottom three or eliminated. The show doesn’t want that. Idol isn’t rigged. They loved Colton. The thing is his fan base was probably not as big as they thought. He probably wasn’t getting a lot of adult votes and that is the show’s core audience despite what people may think.

    I was surprised he was eliminated this soon, but not overwhelmingly so. There are tons of singers out there like him. His voice was not all that special. I’m not sure how much the Lady Gaga song choice played into his elimination. He seems to think it did. Personally I thought he totally butchered “September.” I hated that take on it. It didn’t even sound like the song.

    Bottom line is I don’t think the show is rigged. After 11 seasons the cat would have been out of the bag by now. Every time there is a surprise elimination people cry foul, but I think it’s just how the voting turned out.