'American Idol' eliminates Lakisha Jones, reveals its Top 3 finalists
By Christopher Rocchio, 05/10/2007
Lakisha Jones became the ninth finalist eliminated from American Idol's sixth season during Wednesday night's live broadcast of the Fox reality show's results show.
Jones, a 27-year-old from Fort Meade, MD, was sent packing after "just over 45 million votes" were cast based on Tuesday night's performance episode that featured the Top 4 finalists singing disco hits from the 1970s.
"I think people have more confidence in 'Kisha than 'Kisha has in herself," said Jones during a video montage of her Idol journey. "So... I just love to do it. And if it makes other people happy, I guess I've done my job."
During Tuesday night's performance episode -- the first one to feature each remaining finalist singing two songs instead of one -- Jones sang "Staying Alive" and "Run to Me."
Afterward, Idol judge Randy Jackson said Jones' "Staying Alive" performance "wasn't working" for him and added she "tried to do too much with it" while Paula Abdul said her tempo choice softened the mood and let the audience down a little. As usual, Simon Cowell was more blunt and commented that the performance was "verging on scary in parts" and urged her to bring her comfort zone "back" with her second performance. Jackson later remarked that he thought "Run to Me" was "better than the first joint" Jones hadperformed, and Cowell agreed but still warned her that "I think you and [Blake Lewis] are vulnerable tonight."
Following a (pre-taped Idol Give Back leftover) performance by Pink and a group performance by the Top 4 -- who paid tribute to Tuesday night's musical mentor, former Bee Gees' singer Barry Gibb -- Idol host Ryan Seacrest asked Jones why she seemed so nervous the previous night.
"I had a lot of things that happened earlier in the day," Jones explained. "And I didn't have on what I was supposed to have on, and then there was a key change, and then I was thinking, and over-analyzing everything. I don't know... [I was] hoping Simon would kiss me again."
Earlier in the results show broadcast, Seacrest had revealed Jordin Sparks, a 17-year-old from Glendale, AZ, and Melinda Doolittle, a 29-year-old from Brentwood, TN, were both members of Idol 6's Top 3, leaving only Jones and Lewis, a 25-year-old from Bothell, WA, with their futures on the show uncertain. Following a performance by Gibb, Seacrest asked the Idol judges what they thought.
"God I don't know," said Jackson. "It was a tough night for both of them last night. I don't know man."
Never one to shy away from throwing in his two cents, Cowell answered Seacrest's question more directly. "I don't know... but I could make a guess," Cowell responded.
Jackson and Abdul both immediately told Cowell to "please don't," however Seacrest continued to prod Cowell for an answer. "You can guess," Seacrest reassured Cowell.
"I was going to. I think Lakisha's going home," Cowell responded. "One of them's got to go! There's only two people up there!," he continued after a few boos reigned down from the studio audience.
Cowell was correct in his prediction and Jones was sent packing.
Next week will be the semifinal round of American Idol's sixth season, and the three remaining sixth season finalists -- Melinda Doolittle, Blake Lewis, and Jordin Sparks -- will all perform live on Tuesday, May 15 beginning at 8PM ET on Fox. Then on Wednesday, May 16 at 9PM ET the field of finalists will be narrowed to the season's Top 2.