'American Idol' Burning Questions: The 'Who Knew?' Edition
Among the revelations about season 12's top 5: Angie Miller is a monster on the ice, Janelle Arthur has a knack for arranging and Kree Harrison is friends with some of Nashville's most promising new country acts.
With the first of the girls cut loose (read about the results in our recap here), there still remain plenty of questions. Namely: who’s going to win? But before we get there: a few “who knew?” discoveries about the season 12 top 5.
Angie Miller picked the perfect uplifting song in the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings, but she chose it days before -- who knew? "I picked it right after the elimination show and when the whole Boston Marathon thing happened -- it was a terrible day, but I remember listening back to my song and thinking, wow, the lyrics went so perfectly," the Beverly, Mass. native told The Hollywood Reporter after Wednesday's show. “I And I knew it had to be dedicated to Boston. I'm so glad that, for some reason, I was drawn to that song.”
Angie Miller can hold her own in the hockey rink -- who knew? A beaming Angie said handling the ice like a pro helped her confidence in the other competition: singing for the Idol crown. “I feel like I'm back,” she said. “I'm glad I was able to prove myself and show that I can be just as good off camera.”
Janelle Arthur can arrange a song -- who knew? Singing her own reworked version of Dolly Parton’s “Dumb Blonde,” Janelle says she’s been working on that arrangement for some time. “The arrangement was in my head for a year-and-a-half,” she told THR. “I explained it to [Idol associate music director] Michael Orland. He said OK and we just went with it.” Her aim: “To rejuvenate the song -- that’s what I was hoping to do.”
A few years ago Janelle tried out for the American Idol Experience at Disney World -- who knew? “I didn’t make it past the first round!” she cracked of her first attempt circa 2009. The irony: as one of the top 5, she’ll now be featured in the attraction.
Season nine’s Andrew Garcia had a hand in Candice Glover’s version of the Paula Abdul hit “Straight Up” -- who knew? Her first choice: “If You Don’t Know Me By Now” by Simply Red. But she changed her mind. “I felt like that was the obvious choice,” said Candice. “It's such a soulful song, but I wanted to kind of branch out from that. I know everybody's expecting that soul from me.” With Janelle Arthur’s encouragement, she picked “Straight Up” from the list. “I really love Paula Abdul, but I was kind of hesitant,” she confessed. “But once we got the arrangement together -- the funky beat of Paula’s version and the acoustic version that Andrew Garcia did -- I felt a whole lot better about it. I fell in love with the song even more.”
For Amber Holcomb, the more difficult the song, the better -- who knew? “The judges get it,” she said of choosing Barbra Streisand’s “What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life?" and Badfinger’s “Without You.” “The melody is really hard,” added Amber. “I don't know how to say it in musical terms, but it goes different places that you don't expect.”
Kree Harrison was roommates with a Pistol Annie and BFFs with country’s next big thing, Kacey Musgraves -- who knew? “I was feeling so much rejection in the industry and working a lot of jobs -- seeing them have success gave me drive more than anything,” said Kree. “Of course you're proud and you're supportive -- and they’re doing the same thing for me right now. There's something in the water with me and my friends.”