It was an emotional day when show biz legend Dick Clark died on Wednesday, so American Idol paid tribute to the American Bandstand innovator, and the top seven performed two songs: a soul hit from the past and a No. 1 hit in the past 12 years.
Host Ryan Seacrest began the show paying homage to Clark, who died of a heart attack at 82.
“We can’t begin tonight’s show without acknowledging the passing of a television pioneer and my dear friend Dick Clark. Without Dick, a show like this would not exist,” Ryan said.
“He will be missed greatly and our thoughts and our prayers go out to his family. I know that he’s in a better place, saying, ‘Hey, let’s get on with the show, OK?’ You got it, boss.”
Following the program, Seacrest continued eulogizing the late Clark, who he called “one of those incredible pioneers of our business.”
“It’s a tremendously emotional day for so many people,” said Seacrest. “He taught me how to do television, I studied him as a kid and I had the fortunate opportunity to work with him for several years on New Years Eve.”
In the competiton Wednesday, Hollie Cavanagh stayed strong performing Adele’s Rolling in the Deep and Dusty Springfield’s Son of a Preacher Man.
Randy Jackson called her rendition of the Adele hit “close to perfect,” adding “I felt you for the first time ever.”
Phillip Phillips was no slouch either, singing Usher’s U Got It Bad and Wilson Pickett’s In the Midnight Hour
Jennifer Lopez told him, “That was so sexy! That was great,” of the Usher cover.
And Jessica Sanchez, saved by the judges last week, justified her second chance with a sterling take on Otis Redding’s Try a Little Tenderness.
“Good God and bless my soul, you’ve done it again,” Steven Tyler told her.
Find out who is getting eliminated when American Idol‘s 11th season continues Thursday at 8/7c on Fox.