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‘American Idol’ Hopeful Hollie Cavanagh Takes on Adele + Dusty Springfield

Hollie Cavanagh
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Hollie Cavanagh was challenged to sing a new and an old song on tonight’s episode of ‘American Idol.’ Each contestant was tasked with performing a hit from the 21st century in the first round of performances, and the Top 7 had to do live renditions of soul classics for their second (it was actually modeled after the late Dick Clark‘s program ‘American Bandstand’).

For her first song, our favorite British gal from the Lonestar State kicked off the show with Adele‘s ‘Rolling in the Deep,’ and Cavanagh sang Dusty Springfield’s bluesy ’60s hit ‘Son of a Preacher Man.’

Starting off completely a cappella on a blackened stage, Cavanagh did her fellow U.K. native proud as she hit the opening lines of the chorus with confidence. While the blond songstress has held back in the past due to nerves, she really let her voice shine during this intro. Although she tripped up slightly in a couple of parts, she lost herself in the music and really did a great job when it came down to it. We were also digging the stage atmosphere, with Cavanagh looking like a disco queen amongst the tribal drummers and flashing lights.

Before her second performance, a giddy Hollie was wished good luck by the Liverpool Football Club, and the 18 year old nearly swooned! She then took on her ‘Soul Train’-inspired tune ‘Son of Preacher Man’ originally by Dusty Springfield and covered by renowned soul diva Aretha Franklin. So, did Hollie live up to Aretha? That’s an almost impossible task, but she certainly held her own. Cavanagh’s voice didn’t really wow us throughout the majority song, but her final note was definitely something.

Randy Jackson agreed, saying, “You dug in for that last note you were like, ‘Yo I will not be outdone on this show!’” Cavanagh’s growth as a performer is probably the most notable quality the judges pointed out, with Jennifer Lopez telling her, “I really think that you’re showing a new composure in your performances now.” Steven Tyler also said, “I see it, and I think you can push it even more.”

What did you think of Hollie Cavanagh tonight? Does she deserve to move on to the Top 6 on the 11th season of ‘American Idol’?

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