American Idol 2023 Top 26: Olivia Soli takes on a massive Mariah Carey hit
American Idol Top 26 Night 2 kicked off from Disney Aulani Resort in Hawaii. Monday’s (April 17) episode featured another set of 13 talented singers. Additionally, “July” singer and Miley Cyrus’s sister, Noah Cyrus, mentored. (Read our Recap)
The night found singers tackling several challenging songs, including Olivia Soli who tried her hand at “Emotions” by former American Idol Mariah Carey. Or should I not mention the infamous worst season of Idol aka Season 12, the season of Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey’s bickering?
Noah Cyrus described Olivia’s special quality as “elegance”
Olivia talks about her connection with her mom, and how the music she played influenced her own artistry. Olivia chose the song with the aim of going more upbeat. Noah advises her to start off at the mic stand, and then to grab the mic, and let loose after her big moment. She describes Olivia’s special quality as “elegance.”
The song starts off with some nice belts and runs. Her control on the high notes is incredible and the growls were nice. Olivia’s big strength is in her tone as she sings with a very modern pop and R&B tone that is somewhat reminiscent of singers like Ariana Grande and Sabrina Carpenter. Her stage presence also conveys this diva presence. Olivia feels like a popstar.
If I had to critique this performance, the song at times did feel a bit too big for her voice, as the transitions weren’t as flawless as the original with some strained higher notes and sloppy runs on the lower end. It also lacked the whistle notes that the song is typically known for, and after a night where Nailyah sang multiple, I was wondering if Olivia would attempt them, but she avoided them here. Other than that, this was a fun upbeat performance with big vocals.
“Girl you strutted all over that stage”
Lionel Richie said he had a “what the heck face” the entire performance, and is in awe of her talent at just 21 years old. Luke Bryan said that he didn’t even have to judge as he got lost in the performance, saying, it was “like, just sway, close your eyes, and get caught up in the deal.” Katy Perry said two nights ago she was at dinner with her family as Olivia was sound checking, the whole table said, “oh my god” in awe. Katy continued saying that Olivia did Mariah justice. She says, “girl you strutted all over that stage.”
Some other vocals that wowed tonight were Wé Ani’s rocking rendition of the Miley/Stevie mashup, “Edge of Midnight”, Tyson Venegas’s perfect song choice of Bruno Mars, and Michael Williams’s smooth falsetto on “Tuesdays.” It will be fun to see which singers make the top 20 next Sunday (April 23). Maybe, Olivia will be one of them.