Flower suit... check.
Teeth whitener.. check.
One-way ticket back to Tennessee... check.
Paul McDonald got the boot Thursday night, making him the first male finalist to be eliminated this season.
McDonald's downfall was his uniqueness, but I think that he could have won over American Idol voters if he had improved at all this season. Last season's winner Lee DeWyze started off towards the bottom of the pack, but steadily improved each week to become one of the frontrunners.
Unfortunately, McDonald wasn't able to progress past his duet of "Blackbird" that he performed with Kendra Chantelle during Beatles' week.
But I am not disappointed to see him go home early and it is not because I didn't like the tone of his voice or his persona. It is because he'll be able to get back to performing the kind of music that could, one day, make him a huge star.
I have never done this before on this blog, and Idon't expect to again any time soon, but I am going to plug McDonald's band.
If you're a fan of good music and want to hear a really fresh sound that manages to cross over a few different genres with ease, do yourself a favor and Google at least one of the songs from the band McDonald was in prior to his stint on Idol. If you search for his name and either The Grand Magnolias or Hightide Blues you should be able to find it.
I don't know if he'll have the kind of post-Idol castoff success that Chris Daughtry has had with his band. But I do know that I'm already willing to buy one of his albums, and I can't say that for many of the past Idol contestants - including most of the winners. After all, when was that last time that you or anyone you know admitted to "rocking out" to a Taylor Hicks or Kris Allen album. (Disclaimer: If you have ever rocked out to a Taylor Hicks or Kris Allen album, you need music counseling or at least a hard slap in the face).
McDonald wasn't going to win. I said that early on. But I do think that J. Lo and the show's producer's should suffer some sort of penalty or fine for blatantly swaying the vote Wednesday night.
J. Lo looked right at the camera and told the American Idol voters to "Vote for the Girls." And then, wouldn't you know it, a male contestant was sent home even though Haley Reinhart had by far the worst performance in weeks.
Prior to this season, you could always tell who the American Idol judges liked because they would bash the others. But for a judge to come right out and tell the voters who to vote for is wrong. Lopez has not critiqued anyone all season, which has led to some notable premature departures, but suddenly she's telling people who to vote for. And not because they're better than the other contestants, but solely because of their gender.
For the first time this season I will leave you with my prediction for the Bottom 3 before any of the remaining contestants have even sung a word. Here they are: Haley, Jacob, and Stefano. I think Stefano will be eliminated, but I'll wait until they perform before I lock that pick up.