‘American Idol’: Did Lee DeWyze Seal The Deal With “Hallelujah”?

We’re about 12 hours away from knowing which of the three remaining American Idol contestants will be standing on the stage during next week’s finale. And judging by last night’s episode—where one hopeful completely wowed, one was ho-hum and one stood out like a sore thumb—we have a pretty good idea who those two will be. Lee, Crystal and Casey each performed a song of their choice, and then one the judges chose for them. How did they do? Assess after the jump.

This week showed each of the Top 3 returning to their hometowns, where they were sent a text revealing the judges’ song picks for them. And here’s what went down:

CASEY JAMES
Casey’s choice: “OK, It’s Alright With Me” by Eric Hutchinson
Randy and Kara’s choice: “Daughters” by John Mayer
Casey’s pick of a song by 29-year-old singer-songwriter Eric Hutchinson is a pretty ballsy move on a night where it’s do-or-die before the finale. That said, Casey’s limp performance ends up getting slammed all the way around from the panel of judges. Kara makes the (surprisingly) good point that the audience has no reference point for the largely unknown “OK, It’s Alright With Me” to know whether or not Casey is really adding anything to it. At least things look up a bit when the blond heartthrob takes the stage once more to warble through John Mayer’s “Daughters.” But don’t get us wrong—this guy is going home after tonight if we have to break into the Nokia Theatre and chase him off with torches.

CRYSTAL BOWERSOX
Crystal’s choice:
“Come To My Window” by Melissa Etheridge
Ellen’s choice: “Maybe I’m Amazed” by Paul McCartney
“Come To My Window”? Oh, Crystal—why so obvious? We have much love for Melissa Etheridge’s ’90s classic, but it’s just too safe. Also, you’d think MamaSox would know this song by heart enough to knock it out of the park. Alas, her arrangement is kind of all over the place. Did the producers forget to inform the contestants that THEY NEED TO BRING IT TONIGHT? Hmmm. Like Casey, Crystal does much better with the song choice from the judges—this time it’s “Maybe I’m Amazed” (and she keeps things interesting by not lyrically switching the genders in the love song). Kara notes that the singer “showed parts of [her] voice I don’t think we’ve heard until tonight.” And that’s pretty much the sound of one-half of next week’s final two contestants being solidified.

LEE DEWYZE
Lee’s choice:
“Simple Man” by Lynyrd Skynyrd
Simon’s choice: “Hallelujah” by Leonard Cohen
Shy guy Lee manages to shed all his inhibitions tonight and step up to the plate as the contestant who simply wants it the most and, as Randy says, feels like they can win this. It doesn’t hurt that he’s returned from his hometown a little more humble after visiting with his family. Awww—everyone loves voting for a guy who loves his mama, right? Lee gives a touching performance of “Simple Man,” but it’s Simon’s song choice, “Hallelujah,” that lets him soar—and earns him a standing ovation from the audience. Randy says it was “unbelievable” while Kara tells the constant that he “just owned the entire night.” And Simon, who saw X Factor winner Alexandra Burke have a #1 UK hit with “Hallelujah” two years ago, tells Lee, “I’m very very proud of you. You proved you are a fantastic a singer a great person.”

Best Of The Night: Lee. While at first we didn’t think another guitar-strumming dude could possibly win American Idol for a third year in a row, we’ve finally given in to the possibility.

Worst Of The Night: Casey. He really should have gone home last week.

Final Thought: We’ll be hugely surprised if it’s not a Crystal-Lee finale next week. That said, if anything, Season 9 has certainly proven to be unpredictable.

Tomorrow: What’s that noise, you ask? Just the sound of the Justin Bieber train rolling into town. And look out, Kara—cougars are his specialty.

idolator
  • Selena

    Lee’s been overrated since week one.

  • terie

    Seems to me like they picked the two best songs for Lee & Crystal & hung Casey ‘out to dry’. Sorry …. NEVER heard Casey’s song before. How are people supposed to relate to an UNrelatable song? Cards were definitely stacked againsy Casey ..IMO..

  • Danielle

    I loved Lee’s performances, I’ll be surprised if he doesn’t win…
    As for Casey. I only liked one of his performances. and that was Don’t-Shania Twain. Terie, you’ve never heard Daughters before? I’ve heard it a lot…and it was good with his voice, but Casey just isn’t the greatest singer compared to Crystal and Lee.

    Crystal is absolutely amazing…

    I can’t wait for Tuesday and Wednesday to see who wins!!

  • bev

    hallelujah ! A JOKE. HE HAD A CHOIR TO BACK HIM UP, BECEAUSE HE CAN’T STAY IN TUNE. TAKE ABOUT BRAINWASHING AMERICA. I’M NOT THEY ONLY ONE SAYING THIS. I’M NOT FALLING FOR IT, CRYSTAL ONE OF THE MOST TALENTED IDOLS EVER. NOT SURE WHY SIMON TURNED ON HER, BUT I HOPE HE GETS THE UPSET OF HIS LIFE AND CRYSTAL WINS. I HOPE HE LOOKS LIKE A FOOL ON HIS LAST SHOW!!!!!!!!

  • http://yahoo HeyBev

    GET YOUR EARS IN CHECK!. Lee sang in tune with and without the choir. Simple man he also sang in tune without the choir. I didn’t like the shreiks that Chrystal made on her high notes. She was pitchy. Sorry.

  • Minerva

    go to You tube and watch Alexandra Burke’s version of Hallelujah. Lee copied it and did a lame version of it. Lee does not stay on key and he is not going to make it in the music business. he does not have what it takes. This is a talent contest not a beauty contest. Idol is upset with Crystal for not having her teeth done and not acceting the changes idol wants her to make. She proved to be one that is not changeable and that is not what Idol wants. Lee is not that good as an artist because he may be a singer but not an artist. Lee is changeable and will do what Idol wants him to do regardless if he sounds lame.

  • lyzZa

    F*** you guys lee is the best on hur n datz y he won. he iz goin to b one of da best people in the music business. f***in haterz. he haz an amazin voice he dont need tha choir, he actually woulda been better without him. thay made the proformence weaker then it could hav been so dont b hatin.