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American Idol Recap: Top 24 Boys Take the Stage

For the first time in Season 14 of "American Idol," viewers got a chance to vote on who would go through to the next round. The first show featured the 12 guys from the Top 24.

• Adam Ezegelian kicked off the show with a high-energy performance of Twisted Sister's "I Want to Rock," wearing a blue suit jacket and argyle sweater with jeans. Jennifer Lopez called him "every man," Harry Connick Jr. said that's what rock was about.
• Michael Simeon slowed things down with an '80s "slow dance" song, "How Am I Supposed to Live Without You" by Michael Bolton that inspired the girls in the audience to wave their arms back and forth but bored me to pieces. He wore an olive button-down shirt with a blue tie. There was a little coarseness in his voice on the chorus which was the only thing that made it truly interesting. Harry cautioned him to try to sing in tune, because when the pitch is off on a ballad, it's obvious. Jennifer thought it was a perfect song to follow Adam. Keith Urban found the performance very good and controlled.
• Savion Wright looked like the hipster next door, with a denim shirt with pink and yellow arrows, mustard yellow pants, and a knit hat, jamming through part of the song, "Hey, Soul Sister" by Train on his guitar. He was very comfortable onstage, and his vocals had an easy grace. Harry said it started a little unfocused but got better as it went on. Jennifer told him to be sure to keep an eye on the camera, not just the audience in the room. She complimented his beautiful smile. Keith didn't like the song choice and felt he should play to his strengths.
• Mark Andrew, former landscaper, was next. He ditched his knit cap for once, with his curly hair pulled back into a full ponytail as he sang "The Weight" by the Band. He had the 1970s rock vibe down. Keith thought it was a perfect song for his voice, and Harry agreed. Harry thought he was in the zone. Jennifer thought he had "a real chance at this."
• Trevor Douglas says that, if the music doesn't work out, he wants to be the next Bill Nigh. He wore a black button-down shirt with a sea-green tie and, of course, his horn-rimmed glasses. Unfortunately for him, although his energy was there, his vocals were very uneven and pitchy on his performance of "Best I Ever Had" by Gavin DeGraw. Unless people vote for him based on personality alone, he's in danger. The judges emphasized he needed to work on his vocals.
• Clark Beckham, former street performer, sang the Percy Sledge song "When a Man Loves a Woman," wearing a black suit jacket, jeans, white shirt, and no tie. He combined steamy vocals with a smart use of stagecraft. While he was a little bouncy at times, he commanded the stage without even moving around. Jennifer said he gave her "goosies all day." Harry called him really talented and felt he could withstand some good critiques if he keeps going. Keith just said, "Nashville representing" and called it "killer."
• Rayvon Owen toned down the '80s look but still wore a flat-brimmed hat along with a long-sleeved pale-blue shirt. He took a soulful take on a pop song, "Jealous" by Nick Jonas. Very smooth. Harry called him likeable, handsome and talented and said he had picked a good song. Jennifer advised him not to forget about the audience at home. She also wanted more attitude and edge. Keith found his voice really good and liked the falsetto.
• Jason Seavey did "I'm Yours" by Jason Mraz playing an electric mandolin and wearing a white shirt with the sleeves rolled up and a gray plaid scarf. The vocals were not as strong in the beginning as some of his other performances. Maybe he was a little nervous. He got more comfortable as the song progressed. Keith liked some of his high notes. Jennifer called him "the word beyond adorable" but felt he needed to work more for consistency. Harry said he felt sorry for America because "there's some great talent up here."
• Riley Bria sang a country song, "Homeboy" by Eric Church, playing his electric guitar, and Keith was singing along as he watched. Riley has stage presence, and he's a great guitarist, but his vocals aren't quite leading man material. Jennifer said she hoped it connected with America. Harry joked they should call him "Keith Suburban." Keith liked that he did an Eric Church song.
• Quentin Alexander was next, wearing a gray feather jacket over black parachute pants, singing "I Put a Spell on You" by Screaming Jay Hawkins with such intense emotion that it was captivating. He practically turned it into a torch song, which was pure genius. Harry praised his "different presentation" and found there's a "real artist in there." Jennifer loved his use of drama and dynamics, saying, "It was perfect." Keith said that he hasn't even made a record yet, and that was like a Grammy performance.
• Nick Fradiani played guitar as he sang "Thinking Out Loud" by Ed Sheeran, wearing an olive button-down casual shirt and jeans. He had a lot of vibrato in his voice for a pop song, which seemed a little out of place. I don't see him measuring up to some of the others, who stand out more already. Keith felt it was the perfect song choice and liked that he played and sang. Jennifer said she's sad anyone has to go home, and that was one of the best performances. Harry felt it was really strong.
• Then was Qaasim Middleton did the Mark Ronson/Bruno Mars song "Uptown Funk," wearing a white suit with a light check pattern on it that was straight out of the '80s. Unfortunately, despite how hard he tried, he couldn't match the funk of the original. He did do a lot of dancing and even got Jennifer popping her chest. He also swallowed some of the words. But since he ended the show with an entertaining version of one of the chart-topping songs of 2015, he'll be safe. Jennifer called him "my type of performer" and said she loved him. Harry praised him for "leaving it all on the stage." Keith felt he killed it with charisma.
• Who will survive? I'd put Trevor Douglas, Jason Seavey, Michael Simeon and Riley Bria at the bottom of the pack, with Nick Fradiani possibly also being in danger simply for failing to stand out. If two are cut, expect Trevor Douglas to be one of them.
Tags: american idol, music, televisin

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