American Idol 2013 has been trying some new stuff for Season 12, and things have so far been working out. For instance, the manner by which the Top 10 finalists was announced brought a lot of great energy to the Idol stage. A couple of top contenders (Janelle Arthur, Devin Velez) were seen in a nice new light, with victory songs. The whole deal also made it easier for fans to come up with their "Dream Top 3" this year.
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American Idol 2013: Burnell Taylor always brings his A-game
American Idol 2013: Best Top 10 Victory Song Performance Nominees
Instead of the usual boring announcement of the Top 10 finalists, Idol producers had host Ryan Seacrest running back and forth to present the finalists. After finalists are presented to the loud cheer of the audience, they each sang a victory song. Here are our six nominees for American Idol 2013 "Best Top 10 Victory Song Performance. They are:
Burnell Taylor (India.Arie's "Ready for Love"). Every note was moving. Every word in the title screamed a level of life awareness that is so compelling. This Katrina survivor is ready for love -- from America, from the world.
VIDEO: Burnell Taylor's Victory Song
Devin Velez (Israel Houghton's "The Power of One"). Idol judge Nicki Minaj thinks Devin's Spanish bits in the song propelled him to Top 10. But next to Burnell, he really has the best easy-listening vocals. Realizing the voters got his back, Devin was a real delight to listen to for the first time in the live rounds.
Janelle Arthur (Dierks Bentley's "Home"). Third time's a charm for this country girl. It should be inspiring for other "rejects" that this girl never made it this far on Idol twice in the past. If she hadn't brought her A-Game on Tuesday, she might have been sent home again. But her victory song performance has completely changed everything. For the first time on Idol, Janelle looked and sounded a winner.
VIDEO: Janelle Arthur's Victory Song
Angela Miller ( Beyoncé's "I Was Here"). Artist and artistry are two of the most overused and abused words on Idol. But for Angie Miller, these words fit perfectly.
Kree Harrison (Susan Tedeschi's "Evidence"). Kree has always been easy on the eyes, and her voice always sounded big yet sweet. But her happiness about the results unleashed her best look so far, and made her sound like a force to reckon with in the competition.
Candice Glover (Rose Royce's "I'm Going Down"). Mad vocals, but she made a very, very odd and ironic song choice for a "victory" song.
Interestingly, strong contender Amber Holcomb was not in her element when she sang her victory song, Chaka Khan's "I'm Every Woman." It was nowhere near her best numbers, so far. Perhaps joy and feeling positively overwhelmed holds back her inner diva.
And the award for Best Top 10 Victory Song Performance goes to (drumrolls, please): Burnell Taylor. He also lands a spot in the Idol 2013 Dream Top 3, together with Angie Miller and Janelle Arthur. Boy, this maybe the year that a girl would grab the Idol crown again. Another country girl, maybe?
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