Crystal Bowersox lost her lead on “American Idol” on Tuesday night to a 19-year-old contender who judge Kara DioGuardi said gave a performance that offered hints of Season 8’s most dynamic big stage entertainer, Adam Lambert.
Siobhan Magnus, who Simon Cowell previously called, “a funny little thing,” performed The Rolling Stones’ “Paint It Black” on “Idol’s” big stage, the group’s first evening in the larger arena, but she left having painted the stage red.
“Bringing the drama to ‘American Idol’ Season 9,” a stunned Randy Jackson commented after the petite brunette in a black strapless dress wowed the crowd with a both sultry and highly dramatic version of the song. “That was hot! That was hot.”
“You rise above. In a sea of people, you’re like Snooki’s poof,” Ellen DeGeneres said, referring to the bouffant sported by “Jersey Shore” star Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi. “You just stand out and I like it.”
And Kara admitted to being thoroughly stunned.
“I’m having flashbacks of Adam Lambert and the stairs and the drama,” Kara remarked. “I have to say, the best interpretation tonight. You did the most with the song, most interesting.”
Here’s our rundown of what happened with the rest of the pack:
Michael Lynche, AKA Big Mike, took on “Miss You,” a Stones favorite from the 1978 album “Some Girls,” giving it a soul twist, and it paid off with most of the panel.
“Dog you slayed it. Way to start the show baby,” Randy enthused.
But Simon Cowell saw something different – bad dance moves.
“I thought the performance — at times — particularly your dancing, was kind of corny,” the Brit noted. “But…you sang it well, but I think when you watch it back, it was verging at times… a tiny bit desperate.”
Didi Benami threw her emotions into her rendition of “Play With Fire,” but Simon noted the California-based singer appeared to be emerging from her shell. “You are beginning to show us the kind of artist you want to be,” he noted.
Kara’s crush Casey James played up the country-rock angle of The Stones’ “It’s All Over Now,” and Ellen said it made an impact.
“For most women, their hearts are gonna start racing just looking at you, but then for people like me… Blondes,” she said pausing for impact, “I thought it was fantastic Casey, fantastic.”
Flame-haired Lacey Brown seemed to hit the roughest patch of the night, taking the classic “Ruby Tuesday” and mixing it up enough to get the judges’ attention, but not enough to get a stellar review. “It was a tiny bit sleepy for me, but I’m a fan of yours,” Ellen said.
Spectacled Andrew Garcia also had a hard time with his rendition of “Gimme Shelter,” which Randy said had some big problems. “I love the song, I love The Stones, I love you, but it was just pitchy everywhere. It wasn’t great dude… It was pitchy everywhere,” he said.
Teen Katie Stevens tried out “Wild Horses,” a Stones song recently covered by Susan Boyle and she was met with praise from Randy and Simon, who both said it was “strong.”
Tim Urban opted to do a complete reworking of the classic “Under My Thumb,” giving it a reggae twist, but while he was commended for changing things up, the actual performance left the judges scratching their heads.
“I didn’t get that dude, it was very bizarre,” Randy said.
“I felt like I was at a resort and drinking a pina colada,” Ellen said. “For a night like this… I felt it was a little kind of, ‘On the beach and laying back..’”
Lee Dewyze found himself full of nerves as he gave the jangly “Beast of Burden” a singer/songwriter twist. While Randy called it “dope!” Ellen said she expected more from the Midwestern rocker.
Paige Miles, who hit a rough past last week with “Smile,” whipped out a rollicking version of “Honky Tonk Woman,” despite quietly having laryngitis – something only Ellen knew about.
“Taking that into account, you did great,” Simon said after finding out about Paige’s condition. “You really hit some big notes. [The] song was a little bit generic, a little bit, you know, what you would hear in the bar. I still think your better than that.”
Aaron Kelly brought out his kooky hip-rocking, a move he’s been fond of doing during the big notes, as he tried out “Angie,” but the judges only noticed his excellent vocals.
“I thought was such a great song choice for you,” Ellen said. “Next to Siobhan, those are the two performances that I thought stand out tonight. Beautiful.”
Finally, Crystal Bowersox closed the show with Stones favorite, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” and apparently her performance wasn’t quite what the judges were after.
“You came out here tonight 100 percent the clear favorite and I think you chose a song which just didn’t have what you needed,” Simon said. “This is the first time where I think you were beaten by somebody and that was Siobhan.”