The X Factor USA returned last night (September 12) for its second night of its big two-night premiere with bigger and better talent.
Simon Cowell, Demi Lovato and new judges Paulina Rubio and Kelly Rowland sat through the good, the bad and the bizarre but came out with an amazingly talented teen, the best group they’ve ever had on the show and a subway singer who needs to be performing in arenas instead. Take a look at some of the highlights from night two of the X Factor season three premiere.
Yosselin Marquez: Yosselin is a certified Paulina stan. She wants to be just like her–only better she adds. That’ll be hard to do because as Simon puts it, she’s nuttier than a fruitcake. She doesn’t know who Simon is, she needs the help of her phone to remember the words to Rihanna’s pop smash “Only Girl (In The World)” and simply put, she sucks. It’s a big fat no.
Thomas Weiderspoon: Thomas is XF’s version of Idol’s Scotty McCreery. Oddly enough, he auditions with the same song: “Your Man.” There is a huge difference between Thomas and Scotty though and that’s talent–something Tommy boy possesses very little of. Another giant no.
Rylie Brown: 15-year-old Rylie’s been practicing her audition song, Zedd’s “Clarity,” day and night and says she knows it backwards and forward. When she gets on stage for her audition, nerves gets the best of her and she forgets the lyrics despite all the prep. After some awkward silence, she picks things back up and sounds pretty awesome on the stripped back version. “So you messed up….but who cares when you’ve got a voice like that,” Simon said. The rest of the judges swoon for her and give her four yeses.
Jocelyn Hinton: Jocelyn’s an unemployed 34-year-old who claims she’s a diva just like Whitney Houston. Lies, all lies. She sings Katy Perry’s “Firework” and sounds painfully flat. Plus she forgets the words. Make. It. End! “The best part was actually when you forgot the words,” Simon quipped. She tries singing at least three more songs but Simon finally gets on stage and kicks her out. Thank goodness!
Rachel Potter: Rachel’s a 29-year-old who has always dreamed of being a country star. We’re supposed to all believe her audition of a country-fied “Somebody To Love” is incredible but we found it a bit yawn-inducing. The judges all go gaga–she even gets a standing ovation from the girls–and she’s off to the next round.
Jorge Pena: Jorge thinks he’s super charming but he’s actually super annoying. He rubs the ladies completely the wrong way–especially Demi when he refers to her as “woman”–but they all take note of the potential he has after his Spanish singing audition. After a quick lesson on humility, he gets four yeses.
Simone Torres: Simone hit the audition stage with a soulful performance of “Mustang Sally,” impressing all of the judges. Who knew this quirky little 19-year-old could sing like this?! Pau Pau admits she didn’t expect her to sound this good and Kelly says she thinks it’s the best audition of the day (Simon disagrees because he KNOWS it’s the best!). She gets “4,205 yeses”–more than enough for the next round.
Roxxy Montana: This Detroit sibling trio did their best to perform “One Night Only” from the Dreamgirls soundtrack but it was quickly apparent that one sister had a far better voice than the others. This was almost their undoing until they were asked to perform another song. They performed an a cappella gospel song and blew the judges away. “It’s been a long time since we had girl groups who sang their faces off” Kelly said. Simon thinks they’re the best group ever to appear on XF–aside from the ones he’s put together of course. They get an absolute “hell yeah” from all of the judges.
Al Calderon: Al’s audition of Hall & Oates’ “Sara Smile” had the crowd swooning and screaming along. The smooth teen crooner gained praise from all of the judges although Simon did point out some issues. Those minor problems did nothing to hold him back: Al gets four yeses for the next round.
Denise Weeks: 41-year-old Denise is a mother of two and a subway singer. Now that her kids are adults, she’s trying to pursue her dream of becoming a professional singer. She auditions with Whitney Houston’s “Greatest Love of All” and at first, it doesn’t go so well. Nerves take over and she anxiously rushes the song. Simon asks her to try again, this time without the track and finally her real talent emerges! “The X Factor’s been waiting for you,” Simon said. The girls all agreed and she get four yeses.