I was surprised that Amelia made it this far; she was out of tune more than once in Hollywood, and even when she was in tune she sounded like she was holding on to it like a barrel keg, desperately clinging for dear life. When I saw her in one of the ‘good’ rooms the night before, I mentally counted her as an automatic out in the showdown round.
Not only did she survive, she put up one of the better live performances of the round. She might not even be fodder for the next round; with her fiddle, her Peppermint Patty persona, and suddenly the ability to sing in tune with authority – she could be one of the more interesting sleepers.
Amelia’s showcase performance:
She ain’t out of the woods, though. She has a weird way of pronouncing words that sometimes makes her sound flatten out, like she’s beating the notes with a cast iron fly swatter. She needs to be careful to choose the right song, show off her best features, and not demand too much from her new-found intonation. The live Idol stage is an adrenaline juicer the likes of which these kids have never experienced.
Here’s a good one – Amelia’s band covering Dolly Parton. She was only 12 or 13 at the time. Color me impressed. Ok, with impressed freckles.
Amelia Eisenhauer “Wake me Up” – Avicii: B
The judges were lukewarm but I liked it. The transition to tempo was weird – I had to listen back twice and I’m still not sure which tail was wagging which dog there – and Amelia’s voice isn’t a powerhouse like most of the others in the competition, but I thought she pulled off a nice, Tanya Tucker-ish rendition of the song and she carried plenty of energy – and she was in tune.
Amelia with Kelly Pickler “Suds in the Bucket” – Sara Evans
Like last week, the show started off with a high energy country duet. The girls didn’t disappoint, working comfortably together and putting up a strong performance. I’m pretty sure Kelly Pickler is easy to work with.
Amelia has a little Tanya Tucker in her, particularly the harsh little edge she has to her voice. She’s just a kid, but then again Tanya Tucker was what, 13 when she did “Delta Dawn?” Yes, the title is a link to Tanya’s version.
I can’t say how good Amelia is on the fiddle – I don’t play one of those – but she seems to have a really nice tone and intonation. I can’t really say whether or not it will help her get through, but it can’t hurt. Her problem is that she is up against a tough group of female singers.