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'American Idol' judge Keith Urban: This season is like 'The Hunger Games,' Harry Connick Jr. and I are wired differently


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 04/18/2014 

American Idol judge Keith Urban apparently feels the thirteenth-season competition is just getting fierce.

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"There's friendliness, but you've got the rivalry too. I mean, let's not deny it, it is The Hunger Games," Urban told Ryan Seacrest during a recent interview for E! News.

Urban said he's pretty sure which three contestants will make it to the end "based on consistency."

Two of the most consistent singers in the Top 6 have clearly been Jena Irene and Caleb Johnson. Alex Preston would arguably be the third singer who usually delivers a strong performance. Surprisingly, Irene was one of the judges' "Wild Card" picks this season, so she was never even voted into America's Top 13.

"[Jena]'s been a favorite of mine for a long time, so it's great to see her stepping up," Urban told the Idol host.

Urban explained some of the contestants still have yet to loosen up and really let go of their inhibitions onstage, however, they're well on their way.

"Part of that is you have to be that way as a person, I think. You have to be very, very comfortable in your own skin and comfortable in this environment. But I do think week to week, I'm watching some of them get really comfortable in this environment. Jena's one, I think, who starts to look so comfortable up here," Urban said, according to E! News.

"I think in cases, like to be specific, say [Sam Woolf], he's 17 and he's got this incredible voice, but there's like a life-experience thing that's got to come into play. When those two things come together -- and what's great is we're actually seeing little bits of that happening week to week because of what happens off-camera like what these guys are going through, being away from home."

Although Urban and fellow Idol judge Harry Connick Jr. seem to offer opposite opinions most of the time when critiquing the finalists, the country star apparently really enjoys the dynamic of the judging panel, which also includes Jennifer Lopez.

"Harry's fitting in perfectly. It's good, you know? I like what Jen, Harry and I do, because we just come at it like we are. [Harry and I] disagree about a lot of things because we're just wired differently, we really are, and we respond differently to music," Urban told Seacrest.

"I think we react differently, different things appeal to us, different things impress us. Although, actually, that's not true. I think nothing impresses Harry. No, actually, I think [Wednesday night] he was impressed."



(Photo credit Fox)


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