This week, the American Idol Final Four will be taking on songs from the Lieber & Stoller songbook. You might be surprised by how many songs of theirs you are familiar with (I was). They wrote a lot of music for Elvis Presley, and groups of the ’50s and ’60s whose names started with “The.” The Exciters, The Drifters, The Clovers, The Shangri-Las, The Dixie Cups, The Peggy Lee. Wait a minute, I mean just “Peggy Lee.” Peggy Lee! They wrote “Hound Dog” and “Yakety Yak,” you guys! Read more about them on their Wikipedia page.
Here is what I would like to hear them sing this week, when they will be mentored by Lady Gaga. Maybe they’ll actually get to sing a full song this week?
Song: “Is That All There Is?” (sung by Peggy Lee)
Initially I thought this would be Scotty McCreery’s week to shine, but then I realized that Lieber & Stoller wrote for Peggy Lee and a Peggy Lee/Haley Reinhart combination could be AMAZING. I think “Is That All There Is” could be the more musical choice, but “I’m a Woman” (also by Peggy Lee) would be really fun. W-O-M-A-N.
Song: “Kansas City” (a.k.a. “K.C. Loving” sung by Little Willie Littlefield)
It would be really easy for Scotty McCreery to choose an Elvis song this week because he’s done it twice before and we know that if he’s not going country, he’s going Elvis. BUT, this week’s song selections are all pretty good for Scotty, so it would be nice to see him branch out. The original song could easily translate to country, and it’s about Kansas so …
You know what might be fun? If Scotty sang “Yakety Yak.” I just hope he doesn’t sing “Hound Dog.” I hope no one sings it, actually. Oh but they will.
Song: “Tell Him” (sung by The Exciters)
Maybe she’ll have seen My Best Friend’s Wedding and recognize this from the soundtrack? I think this is a good song for Lauren’s voice, and she likes to do songs that are fun, and this song is fun. I have a feeling she’d want to do “Stand By Me” but James will get it. You know what I’d love, though? If Lauren Alaina sang “Leader of the Pack.” Ohhhh it would be major. Someone please sing it! Scotty?
Song: “Stand By Me” (sung by Ben E. King)
If he doesn’t do this, he might do “Stuck in the Middle With You” by Stealers Wheel. But come on, “Stand By Me” is so choice, and gives anyone who sings it an automatic advantage. I can see James doing with this song what he did with “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow.”
Other Lieber and Stoller Songs That Are Ripe for the Picking:
“On Broadway” by The Drifters
“Black Denim Trousers and Motorcycle Boots” by The Cheers
“Jailhouse Rock” by Elvis Presley
“Love Potion #9” by The Clovers
“Chapel of Love” by The Dixie Cups
“I Keep Forgettin'” made famous by Michael McDonald (please no one sing this, Stefano isn’t in the competition anymore!)
I think Lady Gaga could really be helpful this week. But with this specific genre of music, I think the contestants will either succeed wildly or fail miserably. What do you think? Doo wop?
(Image courtesy of FOX)