American Idol 2012 continued with '80s week on April 4, and featured the top 8 as they delivered classic tunes from before their time. Colton Dixon's gender-bending remixed rendition of a Cyndi Lauper staple earned the praise of the judges as well as the audience, and likely cemented him a spot in next week's top 7.
A pre-performance segment revealed that Colton misses painting faces for fans attending sporting events at home. During his session with mentors Jimmy Iovine, Gwen Stefani and Tony Kanal, Colton shared his plan to sing the '80s anthem "Time After Time". Gwen confessed that she thought it was a strange choice at first, but after listening to Colton work it, she enjoyed what he had to offer. Colton, in turn, was thrilled when Gwen sang along, and wished he had the courage to ask her to sing it live with him. Jimmy said "flipping the gender on it" really works for him and predicted that it would buy Colton a ticket to next week's show.
The rocker boy took to the Idol stage in his usual skinny pants, a tee and a red vest, and proceeded to work the room and the vocals. Although his voice is often transiently reminiscent of other big names--tonight he had a very brief but distinctive Billy Corgan moment--Colton is unabashedly himself. He's a star in the making.
Steven Tyler said "you could do a record right now, man" and "you nailed it". He also expressed appreciation for the drummer. Jennifer Lopez appreciated how Colton was "in synch with the band" the whole time and loved the "journey" of the performance. Randy Jackson liked how he'd "made it his own" and called him "so current". He agreed with Steven's claim that he could make an album now.
Tune in to the American Idol 2012 top 8 results show on April 5 to see if Colton Dixon validates Jimmy Iovine's early prediction by passing safely to the top 7.