The reality institution has shown some wear after 10 seasons. It has seen ratings decline and new shows like “The Voice” and “The X Factor” have come on challenging their formula of taking unknowns and turning them into household names overnight.
“America, you’re on fire, because this is an amazing top 10 brewing,” said judge Randy Jackson. We know some will rise to the occasion, others will crash and burn — and don’t forget a surprise elimination or 2. This year’s finalists are a diverse crop of individuals, but who’s going to win? Here are my predictions:
10. Soulful 28-year-old teacher Elise Testone of SC. Reminds me some of the girl from Season 10, Hailey Reinhart. Needs to find her groove, or she is a goner too. Despite the fact that she was good on “Let’s Stay Together,” I think her age is a factor. This is a young person’s game.
9. 17-year-old student Deandre Brackensick of CA. Otherwise known as the pretty boy with the hair he likes to flip. I liked him more with his hair pulled back.
8. 26-year-old disc jockey Erika Van Pelt of RI. Strong voice, but needs to believe in herself. She also needs a gay stylist for sure. Again, age and weight may be a factor here.
7. Quirky 22-year-old nonprofit organizer Heejun Han of NY. About time there was an Asian male who could make us forget about William Hung. He is decent enough singer, not sure what type of album he would make. He would be good actor, I like his sense of humor.
6. Booming 19-year-old student Joshua Ledet of LA. He can sing, but he can definitely overdo it too. If he avoids too many vocal pyrotechnics, he will stay around longer. I love what Jimmy Iovine said about avoiding becoming “Sister Act 3”.
5. Smooth 21-year-old pawn shop worker Phillip Phillips of GA. Otherwise known as the 2nd coming of Dave Matthews, this quirky guy is a breath of fresh air. He is exciting to watch, and I could see going to one of his concerts. He knows what type of artist he is, and doesn’t really need to finish first to win.
4. 20-year-old alt-rock musician Colton Dixon of TN. He’s cute, so that will carry him for a little bit. Not as good as past rocker’s David Cook or Daughtry. I agree with Jimmy too on him, is he pop or rock?
3. Soothing 18-year-old vocalist Hollie Cavanaugh of TX. If she gets past her nerves, she will go far also. She has the big voice, and has what it takes to win this.
2. Little girl with the big voice 16-year-old Jessica Sanchez of CA. This is the one to watch. Such power and passion when she sings, I would not be surprised to see her win it all. Her rendition of “I Will Always Love You” was one of the best I have ever heard. Let’s hope she doesn’t peak too soon. After her “Turn the Beat Around,” I moved her to #2. She is still finding herself as an artist, which brings us to:
1. Spunky 18-year-old country crooner Skylar Laine of MS. Other than Phillip Phillips, she is the only other one who KNOWS what kind of artist she is. She has a lot of attitude and personality, like Reba McEntire who is an idol of hers. Country was popular last season, and this season also.
Let me know who your favorites are, and how you think the season is going to play out.
Spice69man is a Los Angeles-based writer and designer. Be sure to check out the latest T-Shirts for sale here, including the Real Men Wear Kilts line. They make great gifts for Easter and birthdays.