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Scotty, Lauren and Haley had an opportunity to really showcase themselves last night. They finally had the chance to do three songs and display their depth and versatility. Much to my surprise, Lauren seemed to be the best prepared and well put together. She looked good and sounded good each time. Even if she did have a slight slip in the middle of her last song, most of the public would have never taken notice if the judges had not harped on it. I say kudos to her. She has truly come a long way from the completely goofy (still sometimes slightly goofy) school girl to a somewhat polished performer who is clawing her way into contention to be in the big time.

Haley even surprised me. I wasn't altogether impressed with her first two selections. But when they said that she would be doing a Stevie Nicks/Fleetwood Mac song that has been a classic and one of my favorites for most of my life, I had serious doubts. However, it turns out that in my view that was her best performance of the season. She used her modulation and voice dynamics well and was at her best when she sang softly. When sings softly she has a pretty voice. She resisted the growling urge until the very end, and even then she kept it under wraps. I never thought I would say it but she actually did a really good job with a song that is difficult to replicate. And even though she had a fall, personally I think that a bigger deal was made of that than necessary. Performers fall all the time. Fortunately there were no injuries involved.

And Scotty was Scotty. Three songs, all solid performances, and they provided somewhat different views of him as a performer. I like the fact that he can accompany himself on the guitar. For me that seems to make a more complete performer. He alluded to playing the piano - and I wish he had. I think that would have been very interesting. Perhaps he will break that out as a secret weapon if he makes the final. But I guess that's just a matter of preference.

As a side note – I think that Beyonce provide good, sensible advice to all of the contestants. She seemed level-headed and down to earth. Whatever my opinion of her in the past I enjoyed her on the show last night.

We'll tune in tonight to see who the final selections are - but good luck to all. And thanks to all the performers past and present for an entertaining season.

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