After last week’s Season 2 premiere, fans of The Four were positively hungry for more battles, and Week 2 certainly brought some intense match-ups.
The show opened with a group number from “The Four” consisting of original members James Graham, Stephanie Zelaya, and Sharaya J, and newcomer Majeste Pearson, who knocked out Carvena Jones during Week 1. After a fun package of The Four attending an iHeartRadio event, we got right to the competition!
This 25-year-old from Illinois sang an R&B rendition of “Issues”. The judges gave a bit of a tough critique, saying they wanted to see more passion and heat from her. After some deliberation, DJ Kahled, Meghan Trainor, and Diddy all decided to allow Witney to challenge another contestant for their seat, and she chose Stephanie.
Stephanie came out with her signature ferocity in her performance of “On The Floor”. Witney retaliated with a very soulful version of “It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World”. The panel complimented both artists, but it was clear they were more impressed by Witney. The studio audience agreed, and with that Witney became the newest member of The Four!
At 16, De’Stani is the youngest contestant we’ve seen so far this season. She sang “So Gone” by Monica and showed both sweetness and sass in the performance. Meghan said it was “effortless” and Kahled also complimented her, but Diddy didn’t feel like she was at the level she needed to be to compete.
In the end, De’Stani got one blue ring (from Trainor) and two red ones. She said she was surprised by the outcome and it was obvious she was heartbroken by it. Rejection can be difficult to face at any age, but as a teenager it often feels like the world is coming to an end. It was tough to watch but I hope De’Stani keeps singing and developing her craft.
Stelle came out with a lot of confidence and sang the song “Mad World”. The performance was dark, edgy, and sensual. and the judges didn’t really seem to know what to make of the whole thing (Diddy could barely even find words to describe it!).
Despite being obviously bewildered by what he had just witnessed, Kahled voted for Stelle to advance, but the other two did not. Stelle took her elimination in stride, realizing that not everyone would understand her unique, artistic spirit.
Upon stepping on The Four‘s stage, James showed immediate confidence, teasingly trying to intimidate Sharaya before jumping into a passionate rendition of “Lean Back”. Even before the judges voted, it was clear James and Sharaya were eager to take each other on, and despite Diddy being on the fence, all three judges allowed the battle to commence.
Sharaya started the fight strong with a performance of “Plain Jane” that had a certain bite to it that made it clear she was determined to stick around, even after a small mistake near the beginning. James countered with “Panda”, and while it was fine in its own right it just didn’t have the same impact on the panel or the audience. It was crystal clear Sharaya had won this round.
Skylar gave a slow, emotional performance of “Wolves”. Meghan complimented her falsetto, but the other two judges weren’t as impressed. Ultimately, only Meghan wanted to see her compete for a chair, so Skylar was eliminated.
Self-proclaimed “rebel” Jesse left home because his family refused to support his rock-n-roll aspirations, and sang “Hallelujah” for his artist performance. The judges were quite impressed, and unanimously decided to send him to the next round.
Jesse elected to face-off against Majeste, who sang Demi Lovato’s “Stone Cold”. She sang with grace and ease (but certainly not a lack of power!) directing the lyrics to her opponent at several points during the number, demonstrating how badly she wanted to win the battle. Jesse retaliated with a rousing rock performance of “All Along The Watchtower”, nearly blowing the roof off the studio.
The judges were torn, noting the contrast between Majeste’s R&B and Jesse’s rock-n-roll. It was a nail-biter, but in what was announced as the closest vote of the season, the crowd chose to keep Jesse in the game.
The night ended with The Four consisting of:
Be sure to check out our video recap of this week’s episode with Season 1 contestant Saeed Renaud!