VIDEO: Haley & James Among Standouts On 'Elton John Night' On American Idol; Two Eliminated Thursday Night


Mar. 31 2011, Published 8:00 a.m. ET

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It was another night of (mostly) outstanding performances on American Idol Wednesday night, but Haley Reinhart and rocker James Durbin led the pack with superb interpretions of two of Elton John's classic songs, as his music took center stage.

Bluesy beauty Haley -- perched atop a piano-- belted out a rousing rendition of Bennie and the Jets, prompting judge Randy Jackson to declare it "the best performance of the night."

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Master showman James also won raves from the judges for rocking the house with his rousing rendition of John's classic song, Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting, complete with fire shooting out of the piano.

One awkward moment happened afterwards when James told Ryan Seacrest -- who was sporting a new 'do -- that the amount of hairspray he used to keep his spiked hair in place made him worry he'd have a 'Pepsi Moment,' referring to Michael Jackson's accidental second-degree scalp burns he suffered during the filming of a Pepsi commercial in 1984. Ryan quickly pointed out that Idol is sponsered by that another cola, Coke.

Other standout performances included 'ballad loving babe' Pia Toscano singing Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me, Lauren Alaina giving a slight country spin to the haunting Candle in the Wind, and Jacob Lusk's emotion take on Sorry To Be The Hardest Word.

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American Idol returns Thursday night at 8/7c with the 'Results Show' with two contestants being eliminated. Our prediction for the bottom three: Naima Adedapo who did a reggae version of I'm Still Standing, Thia Megia who sang Daniel, and Casey Abrams -- who was dramatically saved last week by the judges after being voted off --singing Your Song.

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Who do you think will be eliminated Thursday night?  Write your comments below!

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