Melinda Doolittle’s Top 11 Idol Song

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melinda-doolittle-top-10.jpgBrentwood’s Melinda Doolittle was a stunning finale to American Idol’s Top 11 episode.

I’ll admit, I was a little worried when I saw the British Invasion theme–but Melinda’s soulful touch to “As Long As He Needs Me” made all the difference.

As did her fresh new look…

I was shocked when the footage of Melinda Doolittle’s rehearsal revealed a sleek new ‘do! Gone was the slightly stiff coif–in its place was a lustrous bob with short bangs. She looked like a teenager as she nervously discussed her song choice with guest coach Lulu.

“That’s the perfect song for you!” Lulu enthused. “I think she’s shining!”

—>Melinda Doolittle’s 1960 song has been recorded by dozens of famous artists. See the lyrics and compare renditions of “As Long As He Needs Me” here.

When it came to Melinda Doolittle’s live performance, the style went up a notch. Forget the tailored dresses–she looked youthful in flared denims and dangly earrings. Her gray silk top had a figure-flattering, fitted bodice and soft folds around her hips.

The judges weren’t at all concerned with her looks, though. They raved about her performance of “As Long As He Needs Me,” from the musical Oliver!.

Here are a few choice quotations from my notes:

Randy Jackson complimented Doolittle’s great relative pitch. “I guess we can say tonight we saved the best for last.”

Paula Abdul: “You can tell a story with a song….It’s not forced, it just is and it’s beautiful.”

Simon Cowell: “Are you really as nice as you seem?” Then he added his first touch of criticism I’ve heard yet, saying that her song started out boring. BUT — “you made the second part of the song sensational!”

Check here for all our up-to-date coverage on Brentwood’s Melinda Doolittle.