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The NGH Report - American Idol 19's Top 10: "Peter Panning Out For You"


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The NGH Report - American Idol 19's Top 10: "Peter Panning Out For You"


Top 10 night AND Disney night! I have to say... we've been doing Disney night for a number of years now and this felt like the best one. None of the performances were flops. They were all above average to excellent and many were personal bests for a lot of the contestants. We began the evening by adding our Comeback Performance winner to the Top 9 and, surprise surprise, that winner was Arthur Gunn.


Can I just say... man, you people are salty about literally anything Arthur Gunn says, does, or is. It's not just here, either, there is a lot of salt going around about this. People upset about the twist, people upset about his performance, just... people upset. Like, don't we all have better things to do with our time? Here are the reasons I just flat out don't care about this drama:


1. It ain't Arthur Gunn's fault they invited him back on this television show! Who amongst you who have been like, "Another chance at making it? Nah. Passing on that, bruh." Literally none of you. It's like being mad at someone for accepting free money. "Hey man, want $100? The company wants me to offer it to you." "What's the catch?" "No catch at all! Enjoy the free money!" "Great, thanks!" All of you: "I'M SO ANGRY HE ACCEPTED THAT MONEY!" Bonkers, y'all. Bonkers.


2. He's not going to win! Will he push people out before their time? Sure, maybe. Will he win the whole thing? No. Let me get this straight... you think other people's fanbases are going to start voting for Arthur Gunn-- the guy who they apparently "blame" for their contestant getting kicked out? No. Arthur will likely be eliminated this week or the next and we will likely end up with the same Top 3 we always were going to end up with. Breathe. 


3. I like Arthur Gunn. Dude's baller. 


Now, let's first discuss our eliminated finalists:


Deshawn Goncalves - I actually thought this elimination was completely warranted. "When You Wish Upon A Star" BUT JAZZY was an odd arrangement for me. Sucked the soaring nature out of the song and turned it into an elevator tune. Pleasant, sure, but no way enough to drive votes. Deshawn made it so far, though, based on very little buzz. He's a great musician and even he looked like he expected this to be the end of the road. 


Alyssa Wray - Oddly enough, though I've consisted put Alyssa at the bottom of my rankings, I thought tonight was a personal best for her and she should have made it another week if we were judging it on this one performance alone. If I'm judging it on the season? Ehh... it was time. Alyssa is a common Idol trope -- a talented vocalist who has no idea what kind of artist they want to be. She's got a big voice and a dramatic way of interpreting music, but seems very uncertain about how she wants to package it all. I'm not sure if she is a strong actor, but if she is-- I'd recommend Broadway. 


Cassandra Coleman - This was the biggest heart wrench for me of the evening. Cassandra was one of my, if not the, favorites in this competition. I love her voice. It gives me goosebumps almost every time she sings. She's got a voice that was truly unique in this competition and I am sad we won't be able to hear it next week. But, am I surprised? I'm not. There was something about Cassandra that just wasn't connecting with the majority of voters. I'm not sure if was her indie stylings or the way she appeared on camera, but I could tell, weeks ago, that she was going to peak around Top 10/Top 7. So, sad to see it, but definitely not shocked.


On to the rankings!


10. Deshawn Goncalves - "When You Wish Upon A Star" ELIMINATED


Please see my comments above.


9. Caleb Kennedy - "Real Gone"


A Caleb Kennedy best! This number was a bop. He came alive with a band behind him! It was energetic, well-structured, and he sounded more confident than he has in weeks. Honestly, it was the first time in a long time that it felt like Caleb was truly enjoying himself. Also, these types of performances are catnip to country voters. They love them. They can't get enough of them. All Caleb needs to do to stay in this thing next week is just play to his strengths -- truly stereotypical countrified tunes. Twang up everything. Is there a cello in the song? Nope! Cut that @#$% out. More twang instruments. Are we going along at like 80bpm? Nope! Ratchet it up to 120bpm and add fire. It's really his only shot. 


8. Chayce Beckham - "Baby Mine"


This bored me, Chayce. It was a cool vibe, but I was bored. Here's the thing about WGWG contestants: there's usually at least one moment where they deliver something kind of magical. Chayce just hasn't done that yet. He keeps delivering solid, stable performances where he sounds a bit like Bruce Springsteen, but he's going to need to shift into turbo next week if he wants to keep Arthur Gunn at bay. He doesn't have this gruff-singing troubadour lane to himself anymore. Arthur is now here... and he's got fans. Chayce is going to need to recognize that if he wants to continue on.


7. Hunter Metts - "You'll Be In My Heart"


This was a bit of a step down from the last two weeks, but Hunter still delivered a very solid and nuanced performance of this Disney classic. The last fifteen seconds or so of the song were more like it and if he had found a way to build a bit more gradually I think, musically, he would have been in better shape. I honestly don't know how Hunter is faring in the votes this week. I wouldn't even wager a guess. But, I think he's definitely got some people, and they love seeing this tender side of him.


6. Alyssa Wray - "A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes" ELIMINATED


Please see my comments above.


5. Cassandra Coleman - "Go The Distance" ELIMINATED


Please see my comments above.


4. Arthur Gunn - "Remember Me"


The reaction to Arthur deciding to flip "Remember Me" into something slightly brighter was a @#$%ing ridiculous sundae. Y'all. It's not sacrilege to flip a song on Idol. We've literally been doing it for years. "But he changed the entire meaning of the song!!!" How?! By making it less depressing? I mean, sure, some of the pathos was dropped, but... people grieve in different ways. You ever been to an Irish funeral? It's a friggin party. There are plenty of people that celebrate life in the process of grief. The idea of remembering someone can't be joyful?! Get the @#$% out of here. How was the performance, though? It was solid. It was Arthur Gunn. He's a known quantity. He can make an album now. He comes off as someone who is musical and knows the type of artist they want to be. It's why he does well on this show.


3. Casey Bishop - "When She Loved Me"


Beautifully, nuanced performance from young Casey Bishop. Casey is my (and many others) underdog winner for this season. If she makes it to Top 3 against Willie and has a great night? Could be! She packs a wallop with her voice and seems to have a good head for all of this. I do wish this number had one moment where she could have really soared a bit more. It was grounded and refined, but I did want a little bit of fireworks.


2. Willie Spence - "Circle Of Life"


Willie is trucking along. You may start to get bored of him, but I guarantee you most won't. He's consistently great. He knows what he needs to do and he is getting more and more buzz. It all feels very Ruben Season 2. Ruben's performance all started to seem really stable and repeated and we all thought, "I bet voters are getting tired of this!" But... they didn't. He won. Now, he didn't win big that final night... so, could someone still upset Willie? Sure, but if that happens... it will likely happen at the very end of this thing.


1. Grace Kinstler - "Into The Unknown"


This song was ridiculous. It was clearly written just to let Idina Menzel flex. It's a vocal talent show number. Like, the structure of this song was ridiculous and the melody was practically non-existent. But, Grace needed this tonight. After several weeks of bonkers song choices, she needed to remind America why she was in this thing: she has a phenomenal voice. It's a voice that turns heads and moves mountains. So, Grace took the biggest step forward tonight in actually improving her chances to win this thing.



Until next time!



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agree to what you wrote on the 3  who were eliminated. especially alyssa. 

but i am still expecting chayce to be eliminated soon.. 

and thank you to what you wrote on arthur. and i still like him and his style. he knows what kind of artist he is. 

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