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Published: Friday, 3/9/2007

Michigan woman continues to impress 'Idol' judges


DETROIT - The love fest continued Wednesday for American Idol contestant LaKisha Jones.

Jones sang "I Have Nothing," written by Whitney Houston and released on her 1992 soundtrack for the movie The Bodyguard.

The Fox television show's three judges had only good things to say about the 27-year-old, a Flint native and single mother who works in a bank.

"I don't know if it was your best performance, but I'm telling you - another great performance by the great LaKisha," Randy Jackson said.

"You've already made us love you," Paula Abdul told Jones. "You don't have to run anywhere. You're going to stay right here, and you're going to work on being the next Idol."

Even the hypercritical Simon Cowell was nothing but complimentary.

"You brought passion, talent, and believability," he told her.

Cowell, who criticized Jones' costume on last week's show as "distracting," said, "Tonight, you look beautiful."

Jones was one of eight female contestants to perform Wednesday night. Two of them, along with two of the eight men who performed Tuesday, will be dropped after voting results are announced on Thursday's show.

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