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'American Idol': Matchbox Twenty's Rob Thomas Weighs In On Phillip Phillips' 'Disease' Performance

"To be an 'idol,' you need to be more than just a cover artist," the band's frontman tells THR.

Rob Thomas Phillip Phillips Split - H 2012
Getty Images; FOX

In the grand tradition of American Idol finalists like David Cook and Adam Lambert,  Phillip Phillips made it to season 11's Top 3 in part because viewers are reacting to his inspired reinterpretations of popular songs, be it Genesis' 1980s hit "That's All" or Usher's "U Got It Bad."

Wednesday's performances were no exception, starting out the night with Steven Tyler's choice, "Beggin'" by the Four Seasons, closing it with Jimmy Iovine's pick of Bob Seger's "We Got Tonight," while in between was a song of Phillip's own choosing, Matchbox Twenty's 2002 hit "Disease." 

VIDEO: 'American Idol': Final Three Visit Hometowns   What did Matchbox frontman Rob Thomas, who's written with Idols in the past (namely, Chris Daughtry), make of the performance? "I thought he was really good," Thomas tells The Hollywood Reporter. "I appreciate what he did with it. If you're going to be an 'idol,' you need to be more than just a cover artist and I think he made it his own."

Thomas got wind of the performance when "everyone started writing me so I checked it online." He adds that he was "flattered" to have his band's song chosen. 

VIDEO: 'Idol Hangover': David Cook Talks New Music, Old Label and What the Future Holds 

What did you think of Phillip Phillips' version of "Disease?" Will he make it through this week's elimination? Leave your thoughts below, Idol Worshipers...

Twitter: @shirleyhalperin