Melinda Doolittle critiques the ‘American Idol’ Top 9 for HitFix


Season 6 favorite Melinda Doolittle is one of the experts in HitFix’s Fantasy American Idol game and throughout the competition, she’ll be providing analysis on this season’s contenders.


Maybe it”s because I”m in a very punchy mood tonight, but I thought the judges were way too nice. So, in honor of Simon, I have written a brutally honest review with the help of my closest girlfriends. Enter at your own risk.


Jacob Lusk “Man In The Mirror”

I totally respected him for choosing a song he believed in, however, I was a little distracted by all of the hip thrusting in the Saturday Night Fever suit. Why does the man in the mirror have to be dressed in all white? Very cool to have Saidah Garrett there, but not sure their pitch matched up that well. Also, I believe skipping is hazardous to your vibrato. Not even gonna discuss the booty bump with Ryan at the end of the show.


Haley Reinhart “Piece of My Heart”

Loved the L.A.M.B. top and leggings…so cute! (Now, I”m being Paula.) I blame the judges for this one. No one can ever be Janis Joplin. She looked uncomfortable at the prospect of even trying to take it on. The only time she settled in was the last third of the song when she quit trying to be Janis and was just Haley.


Casey Abrams “Have You Ever Seen the Rain”

Loved the arrangement with the upright bass, although, I wouldn”t call it “revolutionary”. (Esperanza Spalding, anyone?) You know I love Casey”s tone, but he does need to be careful about chewing the ends of his phrases. Loved the part at the end when he took it high and cascaded down. This was one of the only times I agreed with the judges tonight. I”ll be sitting next to Jennifer Lopez on the front row of his concert.


Lauren Alaina “Natural Woman”

The look was awesome, however, there was nothing natural about it. Let me start off by saying Lauren has a beautiful voice, but she has what my girls and I call “the dead eye.” Which simply means, she doesn”t seem to connect with the song; Possibly because there”s absolutely no way to be a natural woman at the age of 16.


James Durbin “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” 

The guitar was weeping because it was horribly out of tune. While I don”t blame James for this, it did affect his pitch. Side note: If I were fighting pitch-wise with a guitar that out of tune, I might cry too.


Scotty McCreery “That”s Alright Mama”

Kudos to Scotty for changing it up! This was my favorite Scotty week so far. Not sure why he treats the microphone like it”s a flute, or why Jennifer Lopez thought she saw anything relating to hip-hop in his movement, but I”m proud of him for stepping out of his box.


Pia Toscano “River Deep, Mountain High”

Thank God she did an uptempo song, but if you muted the sound, it still looked like a ballad. (Mark this as the second and final time I agreed with the judges.) Girl can sing her tail off…just looking forward to seeing her let loose and have some fun. In the words of Jennifer Lopez, “Stomp it out!”


Stefano Langone “When A Man Loves A Woman”

While I”d like to believe he was singing this song directly to me, the fact that he sang it approximately one octave higher than I would was a bit of a turn off…and that”s not even counting the key change. It”s kinda like when you don”t want your man to weigh less than you do…some things just aren”t right. We all know by now that Stefano can sing, and sing high…a lot. Now, I would love to hear a different part of his range.


Paul McDonald “Folsom Prison Blues”

With Paul, weird seems to work, however it would have been nice to hear the melody at some point. (Maybe it got locked in Folsom Prison with the blues.) Aside from the melody, or lack thereof, Paul”s quirkiness really paid off in this performance. Oh wait! I forgot about the fact that he seemed amazingly happy to be singing the blues. Can we just leave it at the fact that it was better than last week?


One of my girls wanted to make sure I mentioned the Family Feud closing at the end of the show. What exactly was happening? (See Jacob Lusk review, re: booty bump)

Note to self: Never watch American Idol while in a bad mood. :-)


Stay in touch with Melinda…Go to MelindaDoolittle.com for tour dates, pics & video, and more (and make sure to ‘Follow‘ and ‘Like‘ her while you’re there)!