Idol: Jive Talkin’ For All Except Jordin

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On last night’s American Idol, each of the Top 4 contestants sang tunes penned by Barry Gibb. Based on the judges’ hard-ass feedback (Simon was using both barrels last night), they’re sort of over Melinda Doolittle and her solid but boring performances, and instead anointed Jordin Sparks as the new teacher’s pet. So did Gibb himself. Standing around the piano, evaluating Jordin’s spin through "To Love Somebody," the Bee Gees boss said that he’d never "heard a greater rendition" of the tune. Sparks was flying.

There are three women and one man left in the competition, but the mentor said that it shouldn’t be a problem for the girls to sing songs originally performed by the brothers Gibb. "I’ve always sung like a lady to begin with, so it’s OK," he joked.

The song choices were varied and odd. Aside from LaKisha Jones’s rendition of "Stayin’ Alive," Melinda’s take on "Love You Inside and Out," and Blake Lewis’s falsetto-fied "You Should Be Dancing," the songs were probably not recognizable to most Idol fans.

Even Paula—who normally can be counted on for words of encouragement—was in the mood for a bigger hit when she asked, "What about ‘Jive Talking?’" after Blake’s disappointing and predictably beatboxed performance of "This Is Where I Came In."

The best part of the night, really, was that Judge Judy was in the crowd and shared some banter with Ryan Seacrest. He admitted to her that she frightened him. It makes sense—she looks like she could take him.

–Tracie Egan