“If you can’t sing Billy Joel, you can’t sing at all,” Steven Tyler said at the start of American Idol Wednesday.
Well, the 10 remaining contestants did their best to prove themselves by taking on the singer’s songbook.
Keep reading to find out details of Wednesday’s performances and makeovers …
Elise Testone has struggled to get votes but she has the full support of the judges, who gave her a standing ovation after she sang “Vienna.” “She is unbelievably talented,” Randy Jackson said, as if urging viewers to vote. “That run at the end is so difficult, I don’t know any singers who can probably do that.”
The judges also stood for Jessica Sanchez, who sang “Everybody Has a Dream.” “When God was giving out vocal chords you were so at the front of the line,” Steven Tyler told her. “Thank you for letting me hear you sing.”
Erika Van Pelt earned excellent marks for her performance of “New York State of Mind” as well as her dramatic makeover. After Hilfiger urged her to shorten her long, blonde and red streaked hair, she ended up with a super-short, jet-black do. “It gives me a Pat Benatar vibe,” Jennifer said of Erika’s look.
Not everyone took the advice of the celebrity consultants. Hilfiger told Phillip Phillips he needed fashion help and to never wear gray on stage. Diddy told him to drop his guitar. But Phillip sang “Movin’ Out (Anthony’s Song)” while playing his guitar and dressed in gray. “You took that song and you Phillip Phillips-ed it,” Steven told him. Randy called the performance “one of the best renditions of that song ever.”
Heejun Han ripped off a black jacket on stage to reveal a colorful outfit, which matched his boisterous performance of “My Life,” but the judges didn’t love his vocals. “At least you had fun,” Randy said.
Hollie Cavanagh struggled with “Honesty” – the judges said she was “pitchy.”
Skylar Laine did her take on Garth Brooks’s take on “Shameless.” She was also deemed “pitchy,” but Steven loved her conviction.
“You’re still one of the greatest singers here,” Randy told Joshua Ledet after he sang “She’s Got a Way.” Jennifer wanted him to connect more with the lyrics.
After Deandre Brackensick sang “Only the Good Die Young,” Jennifer said it was a good start but Randy said, “it didn’t show me anything special.”
Colton Dixon ended the night with a classic: “Piano Man.” You sing with pure feeling,” Jennifer said. “I had goosies from head to toe.”
The top 10 face elimination on Thursday (8 p.m. ET).