American Idol isn't going easy on season 11's Top 13: In their first week of real competition, the girls have to tackle songs by the late Whitney Houston while the boys take on Stevie Wonder. Talk about pressure!
We caught up with Idol's Top 13 to discuss the pressure of taking on the two musical icons, as well as how living, working and playing togther is faring so far. Spoiler alert: Not everyone's thrilled with the living situation!
So who's ready to "punch" some of their fellow contestants already?! And how are the contestants feeling about tackling Houston and Wonder's songs?
"I'm so excited," Jessica Sanchez says of performing one of Houston's songs. "I'm nervous because it's Whitney Houston. We have to try and pull it off the best we can." Shannon Magrane agrees with Jessica, saying, "Whitney's really intimidating. She's probably the biggest vocalist ever...we try to interpret it in our own different ways."
Hollie Cavanaugh grew up listening to Houston and credits "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" for starting her singing career! "That is the first song that got me on stage and made people go, 'Oh, she can kind of sing!" Hollie tells us. While Skylar Laine didn't listen to a lot of Houston's songs growing up, she says, "I have so much respect for Whitney. She's amazing. No one can sing like she does."
As for the boys, a lot of them are just as nervous taking on Wonder's material. "I didn't listen to a lot of Stevie growing up, so this week's been a real challenge for me," Colton Dixon admits to us, while Jeremy Rosado says, "It's a little intimidating just because he's Stevie Wonder and nobody can ever compare." Jermaine Jones adds, "It's an honor and a privilege to sing one of his songs on a stage such as this."
Viewers can expect a few surprises from several of the singers tonight, with wild card Deandre Brackensick telling us, "It's really different than what I've been singing" and Joshua Ledet teasing, "The song I'm singing is totally different and totally out of my genre of music, but hopefully they like it."
While Jeremy says "We're like a huge family" and Deandre gushes "I wish we could just stay together for the rest of my life" of living with the Top 13, not everyone is so enthusiastic. "I have fun with my best friend Hollie, but Phillip [Phillips], Heejun [Han], Jeremy and Colton, I'm ready to break down and knock them in their face," Joshua jokes. "They get on my nerves, for real. I'm not even joking, I can't stand them." Well, at least we think he's joking.
And though Heejun can't resist telling Elise Testone she has "beautiful eyes" during our interview, Jeremy is here to set the record straight before any romance rumors start: "We're sleeping in our hotel rooms in our beds by ourselves!"
Are you excited to see the Top 13 take on Whitney Houston and Stevie Wonder tonight? Who is your favorite so far? Sound off in the comments!