American Idol's Lee DeWyze, Crystal Bowersox and Casey James are visiting their respective hometowns of Chicago, Toledo and Dallas today for getting to the Top Three. Along with being cheered on by hometown fans, the contestants also found out which song the judges had selected for them to sing next week.
Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi picked John Mayer's "Daughters" for Casey James to sing. This is actually a perfect song choice for him. I am willing to bet money that Kara wants Casey to just strip down the song like he did with "Jealous Guy." I think as long as Casey keeps his vibrato under control and emotionally invests in the song, he should have a really good performance. He seems to excel with his stripped down, acoustic performances, so hopefully he will do well and show the audience that he deserves Siobhan Magnus' spot in the Top Three. (I'm kidding. Kind of.)
Ellen DeGeneres picked "Maybe I'm Amazed" by Paul McCartney for Crystal Bowersox to sing. What an amazing song choice for Crystal. I had kind of hoped that whichever judge that was picking for her would throw her a curve ball, and maybe force her to rock out next week. I really think that Crystal should put down the guitar for this one, though. I would really love to see her try her hand at piano again, but I would settle on her singing sans guitar with a piano player on stage. For me, that would be pretty ideal. (And props to Ellen for a fantastic song choice!)
And finally, Simon Cowell picked Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" for Lee DeWyze to sing next week. "Hallelujah" is an amazing song, however Tim Urban already sang it this season. Also, this is a song that Idol viewers have come to associate with Jason Castro, who had a memorable performance of the song during season seven. So, I am hoping that Simon works with Lee with the arrangement and hopefully they stay far, far away from the Jeff Buckley version which has been done before.
I am actually shocked that Simon chose this for Lee to sing, because usually Simon would be the first one to say that the song's been done already. Of course this being the season of singing songs from prior seasons, I probably shouldn't be so surprised. Also, Simon tends to always pick songs for the contestant he's pulling for, this season he made it known very early on during the Top 24 that he was rooting for Lee. I am excited and nervous about this performance all at the same time. I really hope that Lee can pull this song off.
What do you think about the judges selections for the contestants? What songs would you have chosen for Casey, Crystal and Lee to sing?