UPDATE: The more I listen to Tapestry, the more I can see Jacob Lusk taking on Way Over Yonder. So many opportunities for sustained notes, extremes of emoting, and bringing that gospel feel back to the Idol stage. They'd have to bring out the Lee DeWyze spotlight and backing choir of heavenly angels, about four or five violins, and perhaps install a lift on stage to elevate Jacob as the song goes on so he's literally nudging God by the end of the song. Shouldn't be a problem.
UPDATE: I can't believe I ignored Home Again in my first draft. Thanks to the anonymous comment suggesting it as good for either of our country crooners Scotty and Lauren. I'm a little concerned with giving such a lyrically weighty song to kids who probably still sleep with retainers on, but it's also a good test to see if they can sell a powerful message, not just sing words and notes.
I would caution them about singing a song that opens, "Sometimes I wonder if I'm ever going to make it home again." It's always dicey choosing a song that is unintentionally asking for you to be voted off. I supposed that there are two ways the audience can take the lyrics -- I want to go home, but only as a member of the Top 3 or I'm tired of LA, send me back to the sane people. So if either of them do pick this song, let's hope the audience is going for the first interpretation.
Since someone already sang Natural Woman, I have to find another Diva-esque song for Jacob Lusk to manhandle. One possibility is Up on the Roof. The song is, after all, just one long build-up to the last glory note.
Another possible choice for Jacob is Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow? which has been covered by the likes of Cher, Elton John, Patti LaBelle and Smokey Robinson, among others, which seems to put it firmly in his comfort zone. Fun fact from Wiki: At Carole King's home, in West Orange, her doorbell rang the eight bar hook of the song.
Seriously, if anyone tries So Far Away, I'll cut a bitch. No, really. This is the most achingly beautiful song. One more song about moving along the highway....
On the other hand, I'd love to see Lauren Alaina sing this -- Beautiful. I think it's a great anthem for people of any age about having a positive attitude, but also good message message for young girls today with the pressures they face. It is such a hopeful, optimistic song and, though you probably can't tell from this blog, I'm actually someone with a fairly sunny disposition. Really. Just don't tick me off.
But maybe a better choice for Haley Reinhart would be It's Too Late. It has a little jazzy, bluesy feel that she could have fun with. She could even bring back the Haley purr.
When I suggested what I thought what Casey Abrams, our band camp nerd cum ladies' man, might take on, I thought it would be I Feel the Earth Move as it seemed to have more than its share of growling opportunities.
How I could have missed the more obvious choice, Jazzman, is beyond me! But one of my Twitter friends reminded me of this, one of the few Carole King songs that I don't like. Which, of course, would make it a perfect choice for one of the remaining contestants whose antics I don't like.
I will bet the farm that Scotty will sing You've Got a Friend. It's been covered by a bunch of country artists, it's sweet and will make the tweens all giddy thinking that future president George Bush will be there to brighten their darkest night.
So what song for our resident rocker, James Durbin? I wouldn't put it past him to slow it way down again, like he did with Maybe I'm Amazed and While My Guitar Gently Weeps. I could actually seem him try and tackle the untouchable So Far Away. But an interesting choice for him might be Child of Mine which he can dedicate to his young son. It's a lesser-known song, but might be something he can really connect with.
John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats had an interesting interpretation of the otherwise perky, sing-songy Carole King ditty, One Fine Day. As I was watching his menacing, stalkerish take on the song, I finally realized that this is what Casey Abrams has been doing all along. Channeling the Mountain Goats!! John Darnielle can't sing, and he make strange faces and odd sounds. Yet many -- including me I must confess -- consider him a genius. It's all becoming clear to me now. Only an indie wannabe music geek would even know about TMGs! So watch this and tell me if you see a little Casey in there:
So what have we all learned here today? Carole King is more talented than the rest of us and we should all just jump off a bridge. Wait, that's not it. Instead, let's just appreciate how ridiculously gifted she is and marvel on how her songs hold up almost half a century since they were written. Yeah, let's do that.