Omaha Stakes: ‘Idol’ Season 13′s Final Auditions
Tessa Kate gets that last golden ticket of Season 13 [photo: Fox]
On Thursday, "American Idol" headed to Omaha, where the judges doled out the last 21 golden tickets of Season 13. Did those tickets go to the right contestants? And did any of the Omaha auditioners have what it takes to compete in Hollywood with the many incredibly talented singers that Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban, and Harry Connick Jr. had already scouted in Boston, Austin, San Francisco, Detroit, Atlanta, and Salt Lake City?
Let's find out…
Quaid Edwards, 21 – Quaid's musical mom, Jolie Edwards, used to gig with Keith Urban back in the day with her country band, Jolie & The Wanted. But would Keith and his fellow judges want Jolie's son for "Idol"? Maybe not. While it was clear that Quaid had inherited some of his mother's talent, as well as her good looks, his cover of Sam Cooke's "A Change is Gonna Come" was beyond bland, completely lacking in pathos, grit, and soul. Jennifer overly nicely critiqued the performance as "inconsistent," although I thought it was consistently dull. Harry told Quaid, "You're cute, and the girls are going to scream, but if you want to be a great singer who changes the game, you're headed in the wrong direction." Even Mama Edwards's old crony Keith was critical. Quaid looked positively stunned, and a little stung, by the panel's comments, although he did seem to take their advice to heart, claiming he has an "amazing work ethic" and insisting that, despite his showbiz pedigree, he's "as green as they come." Then, bizarrely, Hatchet Harry said, "I happen to like that shade of green!" — and all three judges put Quaid through. Would they have done that if Quaid wasn't Jolie's son? I don't know. There have been plenty of other auditioners this season who were turned away because they didn't seem ready yet, and I really think the judges should have told Quaid to come back in Season 14.
Madisen Walker, 15 – This was another not-quite-ready-for-prime-time singer who somehow managed to convince the judges that she deserved a shot. While Madisen carried herself wonderfully for someone so young, and her pitch was pretty much perfect, she did herself no favors covering the biggest hit by the biggest Idol of all time, Carrie Underwood's "Before He Cheats." She just wasn't at an Underwood level…at least not yet. Keith called her performance a "perfect karaoke rendition of a Carrie Underwood song." But J.Lo and Keith saw potential anyway. I certainly see a future for Madisen, but maybe not on "Idol" Season 13. I wouldn't be surprised if she's one of those contestants who gets cut on day one of Hollywood Week ("The heartbreak she's going to get is going to outweigh that one moment of joy she has right now," Harry sadly predicted), but then pulls a Janelle Arthur and comes back two seasons later, blows everyone away, and makes the top 10. I simply think Madisen needs a little more time to ripen.