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Published: Wednesday, 8/25/2010

‘Idol' makes tour stop in Toledo

BY KIRK BAIRD
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Sunday marks Crystal Bowersox's homecoming as the American Idol Live! tour comes to Huntington Center in downtown Toledo.

To get caught up with Bowersox, check out Sunday's Arts section in The Blade, as the 25-year-old Elliston, Ohio native talks about life on the road, coming home to Toledo, and what's next for her career.

But the American Idol runner-up is only one-tenth of the entertainment package the tour provides. Here's a rundown of the other performers on the bill, all of whom are familiar to anyone who watched this year's Idol season:

9. Didi Benami is seriously cute and her vulnerable delivery of Kara DioGuardi's “Terrified” is much better than Katharine McPhee's overly polished version.

8. Andrew Garcia redeems his early exit from the show with his well-regarded take on Paula Abdul's “Straight Up,” though it was better as a stand-alone acoustic piece instead of a full-band production.

7. Katie Stevens ditches the country-vibe Simon Cowell thought was best for her and embraces her inner-Disney-pop. It works, if you like Disney pop.

6. See Tim Urban live and decide for yourself if 20,000 texting tweens can't be wrong. Or can they?

5. Just wait till Siobhan Magnus wails on the Stones' “Paint it Black” in person. Floyd's “The Great Gig in the Sky” would have been even better.

4. Maybe it's puberty, but teen Aaron Kelly has come a long way since American Idol. His voice is more mature and steady, and his confidence comes through as a country singer.

3. Michael Lynche is a good guy, with a wife and young daughter we've come to know through his Idol journey. Maybe buy one of his T-shirts and help him out.

2. Casey James shows off his guitar chops and blond locks. The tweens and teens go crazy. See No. 6.

1. American Idol champ Lee DeWyze is much better in person than on TV. With the contest over, he's relaxed onstage and no longer the shy performer who's just happy to be here.

American Idol Live! takes the stage at 7:30 p.m. Sunday at Huntington Center, 500 Jefferson Ave., in downtown Toledo. Tickets — $40.50, $50.50, and $70.50 — were still available at press time, and can be purchased at all TicketMaster locations, the Huntington Center Box Office, www.ticketmaster.com, and TicketMaster charge by phone at 800-745-3000.

Contact Kirk Baird atkbaird@theblade.comor 419-724-6734.



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