American Idol Recap: Atlanta ready to impress

American Idol judges Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick Jr. (Handout)

American Idol judges Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick Jr. (Handout)

Jane Stevenson, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:13 PM ET

Connie Seacrest? Ever heard of her?

No, she’s not the next American Idol wannabe but rather host Ryan Seacrest’s mom. She opened up Thursday night’s hour-long show in Seacrest’s hometown of Atlanta, waking her son with a video camera in tow.

Later she hit her son’s backside while performing a segue in his place.

“What are you doing? You can’t spank me on national television,” said a mock outraged Seacrest.

Cute opening aside, the contestants in the state of Georgia and beyond came ready to impress beginning with 21-year-old Majesty Rose and her flowered headband. Her “effortless” version of Coldplay’s Violet Hill on acoustic guitar wowed all of the judges.

“It’s a nice feeling for me to hear something very subtle and elegant like that,” said tough judge “Hatchet” or "Harsh" Harry Connick Jr.

“The quieter you got the more I leaned in,” said judge Keith Urban. “It’s a really good sign.”

Phillip Phillips, who auditioned in Savannah and eventually won Season 11, was shown in concert before attendee Sam performed a novelty version of I Want To Be Like You from The Jungle Book. Connick was the lone dissenting judge.

“I don’t think he’ll last,” he said.

I tend to agree.

And 19-year-old tough customer Lauren, in head-to-toe Americana, belted out Reba McEntire’s Fancy. She broke down in tears when she made it through with her “authentic voice.”

“I got goosies on that one,” said judge Jennifer Lopez afterwards.

“I want to know what you think?” asked Lauren of Connick: “Cause I heard you’re kind of... it would be bleeped out on TV so I’m not going to say it.”

“I think you can overaccessorize to the point of ridicule,” countered Connick. “We get it. You’re a southern girl.”

He still liked her voice and she made it through.

Bria’s sparkly lips and “momager” didn’t distract from her big-voiced rendition of Adele’s One and Only.

Not even Chris, the 23-year-old Army National Guard and Bubby the incontinent dog, could dampen the spirit.

“Do you know that song ‘I have a small plastic bag and a towelette?’” joked Connick, who held Bubby while Chris sang. “I believed you. I believe that I have a wet spot on my pants.”

Connick said afterwards he was trying to get rid of that whole “Harsh Harry image.”

“It’s going to take a whole lot more than that,” quipped Lopez.

 


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