American Idol crowns a winner Wednesday night. Before that happens, the final 3 must be reduced to the final 2. On Tuesday night, Jax, Nick Fradiani, and Clark Beckham will vie for a spot in the finale. Beckham has been a strong performer throughout the season, and since his birthday is May 15, the Idol crown would be a welcome gift.
The birthday factor is just one reason Billboard contributor Fred Bronson says Beckham deserves to be the “Idol” of Season 14. (The publication featured articles by other contributors who similarly argued that Jax or Fradiani should win.) Bronson pointed out Beckham’s strength as a vocalist, likability, and cross-genre appeal.
“Look for Beckham on Adult Contemporary, Adult Top 40 and Mainstream Top 40. With the right blue-eyed soul performance, he could join artists like George Michael, Justin Timberlake andSam Smith on the R&B charts and if his faith influences some of his material, he could be a big factor on the Christian charts as well. This crossover appeal will add up to a big number on the Hot 100.”
Newsday reported that the ultimate winner of American Idol is unclear this year. This season is one of the few in recent memory when there has been no clear frontrunner. The publication noted that Beckham has racked up the most iTunes sales out of the final 3, while Fradiani has gained favor with the judges. That’s why Tuesday’s performances will be significant in terms of who wins.
Newsday quoted Jennifer Lopez from last week in her assessment of this season’s contestants.
“We have kind of a battle of the artists. It’s not a battle of the Big Voice vs. The Songwriter… the traditional ‘Idol’ cast. This is the first time where we have four individual artists — any one of them, with the right performances, stealing the show, can take it.”
One unofficial American Idol blog polled readers last week and, at that time, put Fradiani and Rayvon Owen in the bottom two. Owen, after several weeks of escaping elimination due to the virtue of the fan Twitter save, went home. If these results are any indication, there may be an American Idol finale showdown between Beckham and Jax.
The winner will have the distinction of being the second-to-last “American Idol” ever crowned. Fox revealed Monday that next season will be the last for Idol. The show will return with the same set of judges and its long-time host, Ryan Seacrest.
American Idol airs Tuesday at 9 p.m. and Wednesday at 8 p.m. on Fox.
[Clark Beckham image courtesy of AmericanIdol.com]