American Idol 2011: Season 10’s Top Ten moments

Since there’s no way to make any logical song predictions for the Top 2, I’ve decided to assemble “American Idol” Season 10’s Top Ten moments. I’m doing this ahead of the finale, because once that happens, that’s all anyone will care to talk about. Some of the Top Ten list will consist of good performances, others will be exciting and shocking moments.

10. Stefano Langone performs “Hello.” Despite the judge’s claiming Stefano lacked emotion, I picked up on a lot of emotion. This performance was the first of the season to give me goosebumps, so it surely deserves a spot on this list.

9. Paul  McDonald performs “Maggie Mae.” Paul’s performance of “Maggie Mae” during the Top 12 Guys performance show surely landed him into the Top 13. It also left him constantly compared to Rod Stewart. Unfortunately, while very entertaining, Paul’s vocals never quite matched that early performance.

8. Casey Abrams is eliminated and saved. Casey got the judge’s save very early in the same. Some even said too early. At any rate, he didn’t deserve to go home in 11th place, so the judges made a good decision. Casey’s reaction to being saved alone earns it a spot on this list.

7. Lauren Alaina performs “Candle in the Wind.” This was the first time Lauren showed some maturity, so it was a big moment for her. It showed America that even though she’s only 16 (and often acts even younger), she is in this game to win and she’s quite capable.

6. James Durbin performs “Uprising.” Who will ever forget James’ Top 7 performance fully quipped with a marching band? From my earlier review, I said “What the what? That performance was insane. Insanely good. That’s not even my kind of music but I loved it.”

5.  Scotty McCreery sings “Gone.” I’m not a country music fan and I don’t even know who Montgomery Gentry is, but Scotty’s take on their hit “Gone” was his best of the season (so far … who knows what he does in the finale). Scotty really opened my ears to country. His spot in the Top 2 is deserved.

4. Pia Toscano performs “I’ll Stand By You.” It only took until the Top 12 girls performance show for Pia to emerge as a stand out. Her performance of this Pretenders ballad was so intense and amazing, that it got a standing ovation. Even though she was a standout, she wasn’t a front runner, which brings us to No. 3.

3. Pia is eliminated. What a ridiculous shock. A lot of people expected Pia to go all the way, not go home in 9th place. It’s still a mystery to some, including us here at AIN. After she was eliminated, the site was flooded with emails (from people thinking we’re an American Idol affiliate), demanding Pia be reinstated. Crazy stuff.

2. James Durbin performs “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow.” James spent most of the season being the resident rocker. His goal was actually to bring metal back. But when he showed his super softer side for the first time during the Top 6 performance show, I was completely wowed. I love the song anyway, but his version of it blew me away. It was definitely one of his best moments and was the moment I became a fan.

1. Haley Reinhart performs “House of the Rising Sun” and claws her way from the bottom to the Top 3. This is kind of a Haley retrospect as a whole. The fun for Haley really  started around Top 6 when she stopped landing in the bottom, then exploded with “House of the Rising Sun” during the Top 5 show. That was Haley at her best. She followed that with some other greats, like “I (Who Have Nothing)” and a spot in the Top 3. She outlived Pia, Casey and James. That’s quite the fete and No. 1 worthy if you ask me (and I wasn’t even a Haley fan until around Top 5).

So that’s my list. What’s yours?




  1. Don’t forget when Haley talked back to the judges after two of them (you know who) trying to get her eliminated from top 4 after performing MJ’s ‘Earth Song’.

      • Haley is a great person. She just didn’t want to change the song. She didn’t think it would be right or respectful of the artist. She most certainly did not deserve the treatment of the Jlo and Randy. This is the first year I have watched AI and all and all I loved it. But the top 2? Maybe Scotty ..I will just be watching Wensday. I am also dissapointed in some of the hateful comments very rude and uncalled for.

      • SHe didn’t do any justice to the “Earth Song” That was a horrible performance!!! Jennifer and Randy were speaking the truth. It was even more disrespectful performing the song in the wrong key!!! Michael was rolling over in his grave that night!!! YIKES!!!

      • Well, Lauren didn’t give any justice to Elvis’ Unchained Melody but they didn’t say anything but clap and praise. Had MJ been rolling over in the grave, bet Elvis would’ve doing headstand in his.

      • Michael J. would have been proud that Haley picked that song for Idol, remember why he wrote it was to get the message out and what better way to do it. She also keep it like MJ wanted it done and didn’t change it to help her on the show.

      • STILL talking about her talking back??? For God’sa sake, she was STANDING UP FOR HERSELF!!! She was the only one to be criticized throught the whole thing. What would U have done? Huh?

      • Andrew, Jesus… if you are going to berate someone, atleast get your info right:
        Bobby Hatfield of the Righeous Brothers sang Unchained Melody.

      • Elvis was Jewish?

        Think about… headstands in your coffin? Anybody get it, yet?

    • this whole thing is a crap…. remember: HALEY WAS NEVER BEEN INCLUDED TO THE TOP5 PLAN OF THE JUDGES… i do think that rebutting the judges is a valid action for haley. since the live shows of AI, haley received deathly comments especially from randy.

      on the issue of the “Earth Song”– i think she nailed it.. look at her emotion and the growls.. it was relevant to the message of the song… Randy and JLo are just securing the spot for the country singers…

      • If you really want to know how Earth Song sounds, listen to iTunes. For that matter, I highly suggest that you listen to all of it on iTunes. Some of you who don’t understand why we support Haley or why we didn’t agree with the judges that night (and many others) might perhaps finally get it.

        Some of y’all forget that the show has been edited for maximum effect. For instance, the judges’ choice song reveal… Why is there a You Tube clip of Haley surrounded by people at AT&T (like Lauren) getting her song choice, and the clip they chose to show was her all alone in the back of the limo. By then she would have already heard it, the emotion wouldn’t have been real, and the audience’s perception would have been that she was cold and distant. That wasn’t at all the impression that I got from the clip at AT&T.

        Opinions are formed by editing, not by talent. This girl is talented. I can’t wait to watch the whole group Wednesday. I think I’ll be skipping Tuesday, though. There’s not much reason to be a part of that.

      • Everyone was talking about her bad atitude but we saw JLO favoritism on Stefano, Tyler favoritism on James and Scotty and Randy favoritism on Lauren, how does that makes you feel if you were in her place, and I don’t like her, but not because of atitude, it’s her grawls that made me not like

  2. Scotty’s “Letters from Home” should be in the list, perhaps replacing Paul’s place there, because it was his first appearance in front of audience that lead him to become the most likeable person in the show and became the front runner and unstoppable. Steven Tyler was exactly right by saying that after Scotty’s performance, he would get lots of letters from home.
    I agree with Lauren’s moment with “Candle In the Wind”. I find her beautiful and gorgeous voice in the song, reminds me of golden voice of former/old singers such as Karen Carpenter, Karen Young, Anne Murray, etc.

    • I think all of them were great. But the top 2 should be James and Haley. Can’t wait tell Wensday. to see them all and Paul too.

      • it’s over cathryn .. you must accept that Haley not a really best contestant!

      • hey kechik, please make use of some verbs next time! and we haley fans do not argue that haley is the ‘best’ contestant this season.. she is a ‘BETTER’ contestant among the bunch; arguably better than the remaining. Ugh, won’t argue with you. I believe you are a Miley Cyrus fan. Hence, you can not argue on musical technicality. ‘Nuff said!

  3. First time I’ve disagreed with you in a while, man. I do not think Scotty’s spot in the top two is deserved. The majority of his performances this season were monotonous. I don’t think he should have made the top 10. This season was retarded and I’m having a hard time imagining being enticed to watch again next year. I definately can find better things to do with my time tomorrow.

    Some of my favorite moments were quite early. I loved Casey’s “Georgia on my Mind.” I’m with you 100% on Haley’s “House of the Rising Sun.” Haley’s and Casey’s duet was impressive. Lusk going home was a highlight, although the fact that he made it into the top 13 was as inexplicable to me as James going home.

    Enjoyed your reviews.

    • You’re so right about Haley singing “The House of the Rising Sun”. Beautiful job!!

  4. I am so happy to see Lauren and Scotty in the top two. They’ve both got great voices…have to say, I really like Scotty, I would buy his CD. Lauren sings teriffic and they both have great personalities!!! Love them both!

      • I agree that the best two are in the finale. They have the right personalities along with great voices. You can’t say that for some of the other recent eliminations.

  5. i can’t imagine how more than beautiful voice of Lauren when she singing he House of the Rising Sun and who i have a nothing .. i think she better singer than haley .. tq

    • r u serious dude??

      hahaha…lauren better sing
      7 things,best of both worlds,party in the Usa
      coz she is immature.,,she cant sing the way haley sang that dificult songs…

      • Natasha, you got Lauren in the top 2, kudos to you!!! You just brought Miley Cyrus-esque music in the finale. And please, learn to make use of some verbs next time.

      • As I recall, isn’t Lauren quoted as saying Haley was the better Singer?
        Right from the horse’s mouth, boys!

      • Oh, by the way, I was NOT saying Lauren is a horse… it’s a figure of speech.

  6. You made me sooo happy for putting Haley’s House of the Rising Sun on number 1. I loved it and I loved her. Although, I kinda think I Who Have Nothing is quite better, I still agree with you.

    I’m just so happy for Haley. 🙂

  7. Haley is a true Artist,not one of her songs were the same as the original artist,she would spice it up and make it sound like it was the first time the song has been played,Haley had pulled off some difficult performances,she shook the dust off of some old songs and made them into diamonds

  8. For me my favorite performances of the season are the following:
    1. James Durbin’s will you still love me tomorrow
    2. Casey Abram’s nature boy
    3. Haley Reinhart’s house of the rising sun

  9. I believe Stefano’s “I need you now” during the wild card round should be in this list. It was so moving that made everyone wonder “why was he not in the top 10?”

  10. Coming from a different country ( Malaysia), different relegion, different culture, the most appealing, unique & soothing voice in American Idol of all seasons , to me , is SCOTTY McCreery ! Biggest Fan… indeed. He wow us with exceptional voice, distinctive performance, excelllent personality, charming & funny too !
    Scotty all the way… ! By the way.. This season is surely the best, with true talents, no copycat what so ever! Like Casey Abrams very much too ! Appreciate what you have America, while there is freedom to express our opinion, it is definitely not a licence to degrade others .. Peace All The Way!

    • You people need to visit Texas and hear some real country singers doing country.
      Scotty is a great karaoke singer doing country with a fair voice and good twang, he doesn’t improve or add anything new to the songs and that is what defines it as karaoke.

      Go back and listen to Kelly C. and Carrie U. when they were on the show, they make the songs their own, not exact copy, although Scotty does add some twang to some of them, that is it.

      • A small town Doctor in central Texas was one of the best country singers I have ever heard, it was his hobby and he did it purely for the fun.

    • Totally agree with Fizzy 69 re.Scotty.I think all of contestants are great. But never once in my life somebody’s voice had into my heart like Scotty did. Scotty all the way!!

  11. ok silent voters!! this is our last attack.. get ready attack more more and more voting to our LAUREN!!! come on!!

    • While I like Lauren’s singing, I will be voting for Scotty. I have voted for him since the begining and I see no reason to stop now. May God bless both Scotty and Lauren!

  12. my list is:
    1. Anyway – Lauren Alaina
    2. I’ll Stand By You – Pia
    3. Candle in the wind – Lauren Alaina
    4. House of the Rising Sun – Haley
    5. All by Myself – Pia

  13. If u Want Lauren 2 Win u’ll have 2 Vote Xtra Xtra hard due to the fact that Scotty was the 1st person 2 get into the top 2…REMEMBER????? Come oN it should b a girls year this year its been way 2 LONG!!!!!!!

  14. i was kinda shock when james durbin was being elimenated. i thought he’ll gonna make to the finale..

  15. If it’s not against the rules to have the same person as part of multiple top moments, then these are mine.

    Stefano sings “Lately”
    Stefano sings “Just The Way You Are”
    Casey gets eliminated and saved
    Pia gets eliminated
    Scotty sings “Where Were You when the World Stopped Turning”
    James sings “Maybe I’m Amazed”
    James sings “Living For The City”
    James sings “Uprising”
    James sings “Saturday Night’s Alright”
    James sings “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow”

    Those are just my favorites and I’m obviously a James fan. If I were to pick an 11th moment I would have said when Haley sang “Benny and the Jets” which was her best performance of the season for me.

  16. 1) James- Uprising
    2) Haley- House of the Rising Sun
    3) Haley- I Who Have Nothing
    4) James- Saturdays All Right For Fighting
    5) Jacob- God Bless The Child
    6) Haley- Bennie & the Jets- This is when I started to take notice of her & think she might not always belong in the bottom 3.
    7) Pia- I’ll Stand By You
    8) Jacob- A House Is Not A Home
    9) James- You’ve Got Another Thing Coming
    10) Naima- Dancing In The Street

    By the end I didn’t care for Jacob. He lost me with that look in the mirror comment. James & Haley were still strong IMO when they got eliminated. If this was a top 20 list, they’d have several more in there, including the 2 Haley got ripped for (You & I, Earth Song).

    • Adding this-

      Forgot about Haley’s What Is & What Should Never Be. That takes Naimi off my top 10. I’d put Haley at 4 or 5 w/ her Led Zeppelin song.

      • Skip it- making it a top 20 w/ songs in no particular order

        Haley- Rolling In The Deep, Earth Song, You & I, Blue, Rhiannon,

        James- Maybe I’m Amazed, Heavy Metal, Don’t Stop Believing. Not that he did so great, but I’m also a Detroit Red Wing fan & that’s the song they play at the hockey games.

        The whole Motown week was good. Every year they’ve had Motown week it’s been one of my favorites.

        Scott & Lauren did a duet. I can’t recall what it was, but I thought they did excellent. Casey & Haley also did a duet that I enjoyed. I Feel The Earth Move.

      • Danny, And that’s just the problem: People can’t remember what they sing!
        Thou you may not have liked Casey & Haley’s Moanin’, I bet you remember it, right?

    • this is not singing contest but popularity,
      scotty is much deserving than lauren.
      Lauren needs to know how to control her breathing..she is still karaoke.. everything lost after unchained melody..i dont like haley but haley deserves the spot in terms of singing.. but this is american idol..popularity contest..

  17. AI got boring after James got eliminated. It got even more boring after Haley got eliminated. It just perplexes me how Lauren went on to Top 2, she should have been gone home long before James.

  18. Vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote. Vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote. Please for scotty. Thank you

  19. First year ever watching this show. It was a great show until it turned into “Country Idol”

  20. Great list but I would trade Casey doing Maroon 5 as number 10. Stefano just never impressed me. And I would have to find a spot for James’s Love potion number nine probably at number 9 and combine the Piano spots.

  21. Haley on KISS-FM, is very funny and sings Benny, very nice

    on youtube search “Haley Reinhart KISS-FM Interview”

  22. Biggest disappointments…
    1. Jacob enough said
    2. Swingin by Scotty
    3. James’s elimination
    4. Pia’s elimination
    5. Haley vs the Judges drama

      • Sherry, no it was the biggest dissapointment of Scotty for the season. He had a change to play a song from the last 10 years and he chose a safe throw back from the 80’s. That is why it was such a disappointment.

        Fatboy, the whole thing was disappointing, the judges being harsh and her attitude back at them. Simon brought some harsh criticism back in the day but it never got to the level of where you never wanted to hear the comments after a performance. I muted the channel for the judges part almost everytime after Haley because of it. Steven Tyler said that when he came to the show that his outlook was to give positive criticism and not just focus on the negativwe so much. But that got lost when he had to start fighting to get positive remarks in. I guess it really disappointed me that it ended up at the level it was and detracted from the show.

  23. top 05:

    1. Thia Megia- On my Own
    2. Pia- Ill Stand by You
    3. Aston Jones- Am I telling You
    4. Hello- Stefano
    5. Haley- Bennie & the Jets

  24. Mmmm I wonder why Haley’s ranked 1st… SHE WAS THE BEST and you’ll see. out of the 3 she’ll have the BEST career. We’ll talk about it in a few months!

    • Its like you are beating a dead horse….go out and buy her records…show her in that way she ws your fav

      • ya’ll country folk know a lot bout beatin dem here horsies don’t ya’ll?

        I thought #1 was going to be “America sabatages the vote and ruins the most talented top 6 in AI history” (Haley, James, Casey, Lauren, Scotty, and some chick with a p-p)

      • P: I agree with you except that Lauren should not have even been in the top 6. Jacob had a better voice, even though he really had a terrible public persona.

    • She ranked first based on the writer’s opinion. Its not an Universal truth. She was not even close to be the best of the bunch this year!

      • I have to agree with you, because as good performances as she has, I don’t like her voice. Taste matters here, so I really like Lauren’s gorgeous voice.

  25. I can’t believe everyone is still discussing the ones not in the finale. Give it up!!! They are out. We should be just discussing the top 2 and who will win, not who should still be in. Listen, if Pia, Haley, James, Casey, etc. deserve record deals they will get them. Heard yesterday that each contestant will make a total of $48,000 on the AI Tour ($1,000 per performance). That will go a long way in trying to obtain a record deal if not awarded one. But, back to the top 2….I like them both, wish them both luck…pulling for Lauren!

    • I heard the Top two get almost double the rest on tour, close to 100k plus better hotel rooms and better seating on air travel. A leaked contract to TMZ showed that Pia, Haley and Casey getting a little better hotel rooms but fly coach, Idol may have taken option on their management contract, are the rest going by bus with crew I wonder.
      Haley on KISS-FM, is very funny and sings Benny, very nice
      on youtube search “Haley Reinhart KISS-FM Interview”

    • Lovinthetop2 …..we are responding to THIS ARTICLE. Branden suggested a topic of conversation and stated his opinions. We are having a discussion. What’s the problem?

      • people dont like being proved wrong time and time and time again…thats what wrong

    • Dude. We can discuss whomever we want. I plan to support Haley post-Idol more than either of the top 2, so why not talk about her?

      • Me too. Not even close. As long as we’re offering our OPINIONS, it should be between James and Haley tonight. That said, it isn’t, and I wish Scotty and Lauren the best of luck tonight, as well as going forward with their Country careers.

    • the people not in the finals are the exciting ones.
      That is why everone is talking about this.
      I will watch wednesday to see who wins

    • $48,000? That’s IT?!?!?!!?! Holy smokes!! Haley, James, Pia & some of these kids could make more than that at a 1 hour speaking engagement. American Idol rips these kids off until the very end.

      That show has made hundreds of millions off the efforts of these kids. To give em $1,000 per show? I wish you were joking.

      Tix are $30-120 per show if I’m not mistaken. 15,000 people per show. Figure each show brings in about $1,000,000. To pay less than $20,000 to the talent that brings the people in is a total crock.

      Haley & James have put in almost a years work for American Idol by time the tour ends. To be paid $48,000 is a complete rip off. We’re not talking some high paid athletes here who want a raise from $$$$$ to $$$$$$$$$$$$$. $48,000?? OUCH!!!!

      Traveling is tough. I’ve done it for my job. It wears on ya.

      Add to the fact that 100,000+ people wait forever in line for free work at the auditions. American Idol is bringing in I’m guessing $500,000,000/year & paying the kids less than $3,000,000. $1,000,000 for the winner, $500,000 for the rest of the top 10(11), & maybe a million or so in travel expenses. Wow!! They sure do have a racket going on.

      • All true, but the exposure Idol gave them the past few months was worth far more than the $48K they get for performing on tour. It launched their careers, and there’s no price tag for that. Travel is tough, but not so much on 20-year olds.

    • Lauren is a nice girl, she sings country.

      Scotty is a nice kid, he sings country.

      That about wraps it up as far as the finale is concerned.

      Now back to the finale that SHOULD have happened – James/Haley

      10. Jacob Lusk – God Bless the Child; Too bad he never was able to top this performance.

      9. Stefano Langone – I Need You Now; Definitely deserved his wild card spot, if he had given similar performances after that maybe he would have gotten further.

      8. Lauren Alaina – Candle in the Wind; Easily her best performance of the season. This is the last time we really saw any confidence from her during a solo. If she performed her solos the way she performed her duets I’d have no problem with her being in the finale.

      7. Scotty McCreery – You Got A Friend; Scotty’s least Karaoke performance of the season. The only song he made his own and is a very underrated song for him as it was as close to a stand out moment as Scotty ever got to. Too bad his studio version was terrible.

      6. Casey Abrams/Haley Reinhart – Moaning; On the wake of Adele this is when Haley really started to break out of the pack. And you can’t forget Casey, wouldn’t have been the same w/out him.

      5. James Durbin – Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow; This was an amazing vocal. A performance Lauren and Scotty never even attempted to reach.

      4. Pia Toscano – I’ll Stand By You; This really high lighted her range and the purity in her voice. It was AMAZING the first time. Then we heard it 3 more times w/out any changes, exactly the same as before it kind of ruined it. But the first performance of this was the definition of goosepimples.

      3. James Durbin – Uprising;This wasn’t his best vocal but it showcased how amazing James Durbin is with his creativity and just overall vision he has for his performances. The guy knew how to put on a show.
      2. Casey Abrams – Georgia On My Mind; This blew me away during Hollywood week. A lot of people agree with me as it has over 2million views on youtube, 8535 likes with only 85 dislikes (probably Lauren/Scotty fans).

      1.Haley Reinhart – I Who Have Nothing; This is really hard because Haley had more ‘idol moments’ in the last 3 or 4 weeks she was on the show than many Idol winners did their entire season. She got 25 million votes, plenty to have made it into the finale in any other season or even win the whole thing. You can hate her all you want, but Haley is the break out star this season.

      Nigel Lythgoe said that aside from the competition itself the purpose of American Idol is to find the next big thing in American music. In my mind, and the minds of many others, that is Haley.

  26. i can’t wait for HAley making dozens of no.1 hits in the billboard.. this girl is the next big thing… I’ll probably sleep tomorrow on the snoozefest finale…

  27. My List:

    10. Casey Abrams sings “I’ll Put a Spell on You”
    9. Casey Abrams is saved – I thought he was gonna faint!
    8. Pia Toscano’s shock elimination
    7. Scotty McCreery performs “Gone” – love it when Scotty goes “gangsta” LOL.
    6. Casey Abram’s elimination – one of the funniest swan songs I’ve ever seen.
    5. James Durbin’s shock elimination – one of the most heartbreaking I’ve ever seen.
    4. Haley Reinhart performs “House of the Rising Sun”. If James hadn’t opened his performance a week before hers a capella, I would’ve placed this higher.
    3. James Durbin performs “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow”. Vocal perfection which incorporated difficult singing techniques.
    2. James Durbin performs “Uprising” – the costume, the marching drumline, the drama and those OCTAVE JUMPS! Vocal experts I know (a classical music major & an opera director) tell me that is was a masterpiece that’s incredibly difficult to pull off.
    1. James Durbin performs “Heavy Metal” – the most epic performance on the Idol stage EVER, nuff said.

    • I agree your list but instead of having Haley on the list I would have Casey’s Maroon 5 performance there.

    • Hey.. My first name is the same as yours, but our opinions are different.
      Here is my list :
      1. Lauren’s “Anyway”
      2. Lauren’s “Candle in the Wind”
      3. Lauren’s “The Climb”
      Gorgeous voice of Lauren forces me to put them on the top.
      4. Scotty’s “Long Black Train” on his final solo in Holywood week
      5. Scotty’s “The River”
      6. Scotty’s “Where were You…” at top 4 inspirational song
      7. Pia Toscano “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down” 2nd behind Clay Aiken version
      8. Stefano Langone’s ” Tiny Dancer”
      9. James Durbin’s “Saturday’s Night…”
      10. The appearance of Hulk Hogan at the show and James’s reaction to that

      Paul’s “Rocket Man” and Casey’s funny performance at when he kissed JLO would be at #11 and 12 if I have to add them in the list.


        Nice list! Remind me to never travel long distances with you in the car because your taste in music is gross! GAG

    • My list :
      1. James doing Brock Lesnar’s F5 to Paul during
      their wrestling actions in the mansion
      2. Paul asking for a team tag from Naima when he
      was down on the floor, but Naima was just
      watching him during their wrestling actions in
      the mansion.
      3. Scotty’s long distance shot from the house
      unto the net. Ryan Seacrest called this a 9
      point shot.
      4. Scotty’s playing ping-pong (table-tennis) with
      one of the producer (?)
      5. Any of Jacee Badeux’s solo performances.
      6. Any of Lauren’s solo performances, except
      “Unchained Melody” and “Keep Me Hanging…”
      7. Any of Scotty’s solo performances, except
      “Swingin” and “Country Comfort”.
      8. All Pia Toscano’s performances
      9. Several James’s performances
      10. All Stefano’s performances

  28. Loved the top three show and on performance I am sure that Scotty deserves a place in the Finale. Wow, wait until his voice matures. He will be awesome. Between the girls, wow, it was so close. Either could have made it to the Finale. I will be watching here in South Africa at 2 a.m. Wednesday morning.

  29. My favorite moments on American Idol is when Haley did that Michael Jackson song that Randy criticized. And when Haley performed “Benny and the Jets” and when Haley performed “House of the
    Rising Sun”. Humm, anyone want to take a guess as to who my favorite performer was this season? Scotty had his moments and so did James. But, no one came close on a consistent basis to Haley in my viewpoint.

  30. i’m torn between haley singing “house of the rising sun” and james singing “will you still love me tomorrow” as the highlights of this season. also, haley singing “you and i” was fabulous. as for the winner of the season, it’s even up. scotty and lauren are both very talented. superstars….not really, but they will go far


    jP in NC

    • Despite the ALL-CAPS approach I’ll allow it, because flatter gives you everywhere with us.

      We will most certainly be here next season and will even be here year round for Idol fans to keep the discussions going.

      • @ judyp….I agtree and a BIG Thank you to Matt, Branden and Ashli Ray for all of the recaps anbd updates. You are the best. Sorry my man James did not make it to the Top 2; but I am sure he will do just fine. 🙂

    • I would also like to add my sincere thanks to the webmasters of this site – great entertainment and debate throughout the series.

      • Thanks! We really appreciate you and everyone else who were such great, dedicated readers at the site. Without all of you this would be a pretty boring site!

      • thats only because we did not allow teenagers to vote for who they wanted as admins

    • judyP…I could not have said it better….This site is awesome and the writers are great….Matt has quite a few other sites to check out….The Voice, SYTYCD and Big Brother.


  32. Branden….I agree with you on the majority! Personally I would omit Paul’s performance and insert the
    Haley judging controversy culminating in Randy’s tirade….only cuz by visiting this site and reading the comments that was a big moment. I’ve enjoyed your commentary this season! Now if this was top ten PERFORMANCES, I would have an entirely different list which would include a lot of James…a lot of Haley, Pia, Casey. USA today did a top ten performances which included 3 by Haley. I’ll be rooting for Lauren because of the two singers left, I would be most likely to buy something from Lauren. Scotty…not so much, although I realize that others have different opinions.

  33. This may just be a rumor but I heard once Scotty wins and Lauren is done crying she will sign her first recording contract with a bright pink crayon…can anyone confirm?

    • LOL! This would make me happy, though I fear that Lauren will win. The judges and producers have been pimping her all season. AI would love to mold her into a big star and take all the credit for it.

      • It would not surprise me in the least. Making a star out of Lauren would be similar to making hits with the Archies and stars out of the Monkeys and the Spice Girls. These were all marketing phenomena and their success had little to nothing to do with the talent of any of them.

      • Oh wow, this comment made me almost fall out of my chair laughing. It’s PERFECT!

      • Sugar, sugar… hey-hey, we’re the Monkeys & honestly, I can’t recall ANYTHING from the Spice Girls… wonder why?

  34. I thought the Casey/Haley duets were outstanding and I think Lauren and Scotty together are two pieces of a jigsaw.

  35. My moments(some personal)
    1.Scotty sing “The River”, I hooked with country music and taught me to appreciate.

    2.La claw Haley, she is not my favorite singer, but she gave so much drama to the program.

    3.Lauren did not say “evil” in the song “Trouble”, to me seemed very innocent on his part.

    4.The criticism of Jimmy Iovine, Jimmy should be a judge, was very accurate in its assessments.
    5. Output Pia and James, for me it was quite a surprise.

    6. “Natural Boy” Casey with that talent!

    7.The Scotty return home with Josh Turner in concert, is great fun.

    8. Haley with the judges, she is the most spoiled girl I’ve seen on American Idol.
    And love-hate in the fans.

    9. Scotty his good humor, always a smile tore mine.

    10.Y the announcement of the final Top 3, step one of my three favorites (Scotty, James and Casey)

    • What makes you say that Haley is spoiled?
      By whom? Certainly she was not spoiled by the judges. Their critiques of her make me wonder about their ability to judge talent.

      • There was no offense, that’s how lovely this season, Haley’s fans are so passionate about it, as I am by Scotty.

    • How about Scotty with Gaga and her XXX rated shoes and eye makeup maybe at honorable mention.

  36. Well,it’s sad that Haley lefted..she got the audience going and she had standing ovations with the songs she sang..and what does Jennifer Lopez or Randy whatever his last name is..know about Haley’s voice goes all over the place, she can sing and again captures the audiences ears..they can’t say they didn’t like the songs she sang.. So as for the country singers, well Scotty played the innocent part about the lord to the public,and they bought it, and as for the other person, she is sweet and yes they should stick to country music since that’s all they can sing…but they will never top Carrie Underwood cause she is herself and she’s homegrown country…she’s one of my favorite country singer..can’t say goodluck to the 2 people on american ?. I know I won’t be watching tonight,not that anyone cares but the next day I will..Haley has class when she thanked the judges and the people for the chance to be on this american idol. She was not what people said she is. She thanked everyone with love..Steven Tyler you rock!!!!! Oh yeah, stop making like Haley’s fall was so dramatic..come on writers!!!mmmmmmm

    • whats homegrown country? carries from okla. as is garth. reba , vince, toby, merle, miranda, ronnie dunn, and the list goes on. but you don’t have to be from a ‘country’ state to be a country singer.

  37. 1.james being eliminated
    2.james ‘uprising’
    3.james ‘closer to the edge’
    3.haley pulling off those 3 great songs on the week she was eliminated.
    4.haleys elimination
    5.haley rolling in the deep
    6. haleys mom not punching randy out. (this is probably first on my list)
    7. realizing AI is fake
    8. everything james did!
    9. 2 country kids making me enjoy watching/hearing them when i hate country.
    10. LOVED when haley quit taking the crap randy was dishing out to her. she earned my respect!

  38. I would add these to the writer’s original list:
    – Casey’s swan song – the first to go out with a bang!
    – Casey and Haley’s duet Moanin’
    – Scotty’s version of The River
    – Lady Gaga mentoring Scotty (funniest moment)
    – Haley singing Bennie and the Jets (this is when she really started to turn things around and turned many of us into fans)
    – Stefano singing I Need You Now and winning the wild card – he tried so hard and it really came through.
    – Lauren’s audition in which she impressed the judges and sang with Steven Tyler (though she never lived up to her awesome audition, and, in my opinion does not deserve a spot in the top 2)

  39. My Top Ten favorite moments of Idol:

    1. Haley singing “The House of the Rising Sun”. Best performance of the season in my humble opinion.

    2. Casey and Haley’s duet “Moanin'”. Awesome doesn’t even come close to describe this. Pure gold.

    3. Haley singing “You and I”

    4. Pia singing “All by Myself” – she should have been to the top 2 with Haley.

    5. Haley singing “Beautiful”

    6. James singing “Heavy Metal”. Mainly because seeing Zakk Wylde on the Idol stage was THE surreal experience of the season.

    7. Haley singing “Benny and the Jets”.

    8. Casey’s rendition of “Georgia on My Mind”. Maybe his voice is not the most amazing of the bunch, but he is the best musician of the season.

    9. Casey’s audition – I Don’t Need No Doctor.

    10. JC Badeaux’s audition – I know it was a long time ago. But he sounded really good singing “Sitting on the Dock of the Bay”.

    • I’m so glad you mentioned Jacee Badeaux! He was my favorite from the start. (I’m a Louisiana girl – can’t help myself!)

      I hope he comes back in a year or two when his voice is more mature. He’ll get my votes!

  40. I’m so corny that I wish Scotty and Lauren would sing “Islands in the Stream” this week as a duet. For me it would make the most of having two country finalists!!

  41. Branden, I am worried about you because my list is so similar to you. You must be older than I thought. I disagree with you only on MacDonald and Alaina, neither of whom would I have on any top 10 list for anything, and on taste for country music. Having lived in TN for most of my 63 years and being raised by a country music entertainer, I pretty much had to absorb some knowledge and some taste for it. It is as a result of that that I would not put either of the two I listed above in my top 10 (well, except for a list of the top 10 people with whom I would expect to be tortured by having to listen for in Hell – a list which Paul would certainly make, but probably not Lauren. She would make my top 10 of “Who Cares?”).You and I are in complete agreement on Haley. I was not a fan until House of the Rising Sun (although, I really liked Blue, too). In any event, keep up the good work.

  42. My favorite performance of the season was Jason Lusk’s rendition of Elton John’s “Sorry”.

    Haley’s “House of the Rising Son” wasn’t bad, but has the emotional depth of “Mary had a little lamb” compared to Siobhan Magnus’s version, last year.

    I was surprised in the top 13 show, when Lauren got more votes than Ashton Jones

    • Theo, the problem with Siobhan in general (I do not remember her version of House) was that she could not stay in tune, on key, in pitch, singing sharp, etc. Other than that, she was okay.

      • So, in essense, you are saying she couldn’t sing?
        Boy, I’m not be any means convinced of that. I”ll explain later… probably tonight since there won’t be anything worth watching on TV.

      • My issues with Siobhan were entirely based on her personality. I know I know we shouldn’t judge people based on what we see on camera. Basically the way she spoke made me not want to listen to her. I respect and appreciate her artistry and originality, but her communication skills were sorely lacking.

    • Theo, I’ve listened closely to each of their renditions & Haley’s suits my tastes better. I found Siobhan’s less expressive.
      Speaking of Siobhan, I will have a post later on her.

      • I only like 3 of Siobhan’s performances at that season, i.e “Think”, “Any Man of Mine” and “Living in the City”; the rest were unimpressive at all.
        Crystall and Lee were consistently good, but my favorite was Aaron Kelly, and I also like Katie Stevens, Alex Lambert, Jermaine Sellers, Joe Munoz and … Tim Urban 🙂

  43. I would like to join some of the others and say my “thanks” to the people who developed, wrote and ran this site. I was excited after each performance to read about what other’s were thinking. I look forward to reading it next season and throughout the year.

    I think the memorable performances this year were done by James, Casey and Haley. However, that doesn’t mean they were the best. I look forward to tonight and I think that Scotty and Lauren deserve the win as much as any of those aforementioned three.

  44. Hey Braden, since you got your top 10 list, I’m also curious of which are your bottom 10 moments??

    • Hey!!! I want to know too… C’mon tell us the bottom 10 moments of this season

      • Great Point…..Come on Branden…Go for It!!!!!
        Must admit your Top 10 are right on….
        Your Top 2 picks James & Haley should have been in the finale tonight but at least we’ll get to see them tomorrow night….

  45. Haley is number one? Really? I can’t understand why anyone likes her. Her voice is like nails on a chalkboard. My top ten would consist almost entirely of James and some Casey. As for the top two, they are both very talented but neither have really done anything all that memorable, apart from their duet “I told you so” which was the very best either of them has ever been.

  46. Hey, I agree with your list but I would switch number one Hailey with Casey’s save, to me it was the bst moment of the season, very unexpected…

  47. my list:
    10.BLUE-haley reinhart
    9.OH BY MYSELF-pia toscano
    8.HELLO-stefano langone
    7.DANCING IN THE STREET-naima adedapo
    6.HEAVY METAL-james durbin
    5.RIVER DEEP MOUNTAIN HIGH-pia toscano
    4.MOANING-Haley reinhart, casey abrahms
    3.What Is And What Should Never Be-haley reinhart
    2.pia toscano’s shocking elimination
    1.HOUSE OF THE RISING SUN-haley reinhart

  48. Something puzzles me. I struggle to think of any real stand-out moments despite everyone (well mainly the judges) constantly saying that the Top 13 are the most talented and greatest group ever. Is that just because they aren’t that great? Or just don’t sing to their true capacity? And arguably the least Wow-factor singers are the overly safe song selecting Lauren and Scotty.

  49. My top 10 moments

    10.Guessing 9/10 in the top 10 correctly, and the one that i didnt guess right got a wild card anyways (I guessed Naima over Karen)
    9.Casey’s Elimination, not that he was eliminated more like his elimination preformance.
    8.Jacob Lusk sings God Bless the Child, the only time i ever really liked him, he went all down hill from there.
    7.Haley Reinhart preforms Bennie and the Jets, made me realize she wasnt going anywhere soon.
    6.Pia sings I’ll Stand By You
    5.Scotty sings Gone, first time i actually liked him
    4.Pia Eliminated
    3.James Durbin sings Uprising, amazing preformance, just that.
    2.James Durbin sings Will You Still Love Me Tommorrow, probably because it was the best preformance given by anybody that entire season.
    1.James Durbin voted off.

  50. 10. If You Don’t Know Me By Now – Stefano
    9. Maggie May – Paul
    8. Bennie and the Jets – Haley
    7. That’s All Right Mama – Scotty
    6. Maybe I’m Amazed – James
    5. Georgia on My Mind – Casey
    4. Moanin’ – Casey and Haley
    3. I Who Have Nothing – Haley
    2. Need You Now – Stefano
    1. House of the Rising Sun – Haley

  51. My Top 10 Performances/”Moments” for this Season:

    10. James Durbin- You Got Another Thing Coming
    9. Kendra Chantelle- Impossible and Georgia in My Mind
    -I really thought Kendra should have made it to top 13, she had a really good voice. She is in the same mould as Pia, only less boring. Who knows what she could have brought to the show had she stayed. She should have stayed instead of that Karen Rodriguez girl.
    8. Casey Abrams- I Put A Spell on You
    7. James Durbin- Uprising
    -Not the best vocal but definitely visionary.
    6. Haley Reinhart- Bennie and the Jetssssssss
    -I believe this was the turning point of her Idol career,
    5. Casey Abrams- Nature Boy
    4. Haley Reinhart- Rolling in the Deep
    – I watch this on YouTube almost everyday, I think that its a very good take on Adele’s hit.
    3. Any duet by Haley and Casey, their chemistry is palpable and most duets usually sound off except theirs.
    2. Haley Reinhart- House of the Rising Sun
    1. Haley Reinhart- I Who Have Nothing
    – The passion, the anger, the drama. So delicious…

    Honorable Mentions

    Jacob Lusk- God Bless the Child and A House is Not a Home. In my opinion this guy peaked too soon but was not able to live up to it.

    Lauren Alaina- Anyway.
    – Her only performance in my opinion where she actually went for it (in terms of the notes)and showed depth.

    Pia Toscano- All By Myself and I’ll Stand By You
    – For obvious reasons, a.k.a. her voice. Though she kinda bored me.

    Naima Adepo- Dancing in the Streets
    – Yes, the crazy dance.

    Also, obviously I am a Haley and Casey fan so please don’t hate. 😛

  52. my top 10 is..

    10 Haley&Casey – I feel the earth move
    9 Haley – Beautiful
    8 Haley – Rolling in the deep
    7 Haley&Casey – Moanin
    6 Haley – Piece of my heart
    5 Haley’s Top 3 Performance
    4 Haley – I who have nothing
    3 Haley – House Of The Rising Sun
    2 Casey’s quit – when he sang to Haley 🙂
    1 Haley’s quit song – Bennie and The Jets

    and i think it’s better if Haley sang you oghta know for the judges when she’s eliminated..
    HALEY FEVER….. !!! 😀

  53. I want to post my top 10 moments too but i think i’ll just sum it up with this sentence. IT’S ALL HALEY.

  54. I am a fan of Jacee and Scotty, so my top 5 is :
    1. Scotty’s winning moment
    2. Jacee’s singing “God Bless The Broken Road ” at
    the Holywood round
    3. Jacee’s final performance at Holywood round
    4. Steve Beghun’s performance at audition
    5. Scotty’s audition

  55. I put a lot of time into this and i agree with some of your selections but this would be my top 10 moments of the season, each one of these were amazing so it was hard to pick but here they are

    10 Lauren and Scotty “I Told You So”
    9 Pia “Ill Stand by You”
    8 James “Uprising”
    7 Pia “All by my Self”
    6 Haley “House of the Rising Sun”
    5 Casey and Haley “Moaning”
    4 Karen “Hero”
    3 Stefano “End of the Road”
    2 Haleys elimination, “Bennie and the Jets”
    1 Haley “I (who have nothing)”.

  56. 1.House of Rising Sun by Haley Reinhart
    2.I’ll Stand by You by Pia Toscano
    3.Uprising by James Durbin
    4.I Who have Nothing by Haley Reinhart
    5.Bennie and the jets by Haley Reinhart
    6.Love Potion No. 9 By James Durbin
    7.Candle in the Wind By Lauren Alaina
    8.Moanin By Haley Reinhart and Casey Abrams(Best Duet Ever on American Idol)
    9.All by Myself By Pia Toscano
    10.Gone By Scotty McCreery


    10. Casey’s saved from elimination
    9. What Is And What Should Never Be – Haley Reinhart
    8. I Told You So – Scotty and Lauren
    7. Uprising – James Durbin
    6. I Who Have Nothing and Bennie and the Jets – Haley Reinhart
    5. Elimination of Thia, Pia, Haley, James and Casey
    4. Moanin- Haley and Casey
    3. Out Here On my Own – Thia Megia
    2. I’ll Stand by You – Pia Toscano
    1. The House of the Rising Sun – Haley Reinhart

  58. 1-haley renhart house of the rising sun.
    2-pia toscano ill stand by you.
    3-lauren alaina like mother does.
    4-james durbin uprising.
    5-james dubin you still love me tomorrow.
    6-haley reinhart i who was nothing.
    7-lauren alaina flat on the floor.
    8-scotty mcreery letters from home.
    9-th funny steven tyler.
    10-clint jun gumboa elnation!!!!!!
    my top 13 contestans the season:
    1-Haley reinhart
    2-james durbin
    3-pia toscano
    4-lauren alaina
    5-scotty mcreery.
    6-jacob lusk.
    7-casey abrams.
    8-paul mcdonald
    9-thia megia.
    10-naima adedapo.
    11-ashton jones.
    12-stefano langone.
    13-karen rodriguez.

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