The top seven were inspiring this week from beginning to end; there were some bumps along the way but overall this was an enjoyable show. Alicia Keys was appropriately this week's mentor and gave sound advice to the remaining contestants. A couple of contestants really impressed, namely Crystal Bowersox and Lee Dewyze, and surprise of the night, Tim Urban.
01 Casey James sang "Don't Stop Thinking About Tomorrow" made famous by Fleetwood Mac-- Randy said it was good, not great, and asked that Casey give him something a little bit different; Ellen agreed with Randy. Kara said his performance didn't show what makes him different; I disagree, I think it showed exactly what makes him different. Simon said there was no originality and it was a lazy song choice.
02 Lee Dewyze sang "The Boxer" made famous by Simon and Garfunkel-- Alicia told Lee not to lose sight of what the song is really about. Randy called Lee a great artist ready to make a record; Ellen complimented his choice of song and said he showed great depth. Kara said that he had "a moment" with that performance and to keep choosing songs he is connected to like that. Simon called it emotional and inspirational, absolutely brilliant.
03 Tim Urban sang "Better Days" made famous by the Goo Goo Dolls-- Randy said okay, good karaoke; Ellen called Tim a soup of the day, sometimes she likes him and sometimes she doesn't. Kara said it was not his best, and Simon admitted he has improved over the past few weeks but this week was a little bit of a letdown. I disagree with the judges, I thought Tim was great, one of the best he has ever been, and I don't understand why the judges have been so difficult with him.
04 Aaron Kelly sang "I Believe I Can Fly" made famous by R. Kelly-- Randy said good job with a giant song, and you have great vocal talent. Kara said by the end it was awesome. Simon said, you gave it your all but I would have turned it off within seconds; it wasn't good, but you made it good.
05 Siobhan Magnus sang "When You Believe" made famous by Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston-- Alicia said she was impressed with Siobhan's voice. Randy thought it was okay; Ellen loved it and thought it confirmed why Siobhan is here. Kara thought it started to sound like a musical. Simon found the whole thing to be all over the place and wrong. I just did not like the arrangement at all; important part of the song were left out.
06 Michael Lynche sang "Hero" made famous by Chad Kroeger featuring Josey Scott-- This song is a personal favorite of mine, and I didn't feel Mike poured his heart into the performance the way he did last week. Randy said it worked out; Ellen, pressed for time, said great job. Kara said it became unrecognizable, and Simon said he sang it well, but somehow it sounded artificial.
07 Crystal Bowersox sang "People Get Ready" made famous by the Impressions-- Alicia said Crystal is special and told her to go for it. Randy said I have been a fan since day one and that was unbelievable and I have to stand up for you. Ellen said she has never looked more beautiful; Kara said the reason you're called "mama sox" is because you just schooled all those other contestants. Simon said he was happy to see Crystal emotional and thought her performance was in a different class.