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American Idol
Season 11
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In the world's ultimate talent search, where the eyes of a nation are upon the best undiscovered singers in the country, where the audience has the power to make or break you, and where a million-dollar recording contract is on the line, there is only one rule: If you can sing it, bring it.

Recaps by Chico Alexander, Jason Block, Don Harpwood & Gordon Pepper, GSNN
Host Ryan Seacrest
Judges Randy Jackson
Jennifer Lopez
Steven Tyler
Mentor Jimmy Iovine
Creator Simon Fuller (based upon "Pop Idol")
EP Nigel Lythgoe
Ken Warwick
Cecile Frot-Coutaz
Simon Fuller
Packager 19 TV & FremantleMedia North America
Origins CBS Television City, Los Angeles
Web americanidol.com
Airs 8p Wed & Thurs, Fox
@American Idol

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Auditions: Galveston
January 26

Idol heads to Houston to take in the rocket's red glare, but will it be "one giant leap for mankind" or "Houston, we have a problem". Either way, it's beginning to look like a stumble in the dark.

Open call: Reliant Arena
Callbacks: Galveston Island Convention Center

After a greeting from the International Space Station floating directly above Texas... we take a look back at one particular Texan made good on this show... Idol #1, Kelly Clarkson.

But that was then, and this is now.

First up, someone who's obviously starstruck by Steven Tyler, Phong Vu (25; Houston; student), who loves the attention from the cameras. He wants to shock and awe, but in all seriousness, he says that G-d is on his side. We'll see. He has a powerful movement, but after his performance of Toni Braxton's "Unbreak My Heart", I have to have a powerful moment.

Cameron Dobbins (22, Houston) ... sucked. Lamounte Hall (18, Houston)... sucked. This random cowboy... sucks. THIS random cowboy... sucks.

Skylar Laine (17; Brandon, MS; student) likes to ride her quad, shoot deer, and hang guitars beside her deer head. She's more man than you'll ever be. She wants to keep her family store in the family, so she'll use her voice for that. She sings Pistol Annies' "Hell on Heels". She has a swagger to her that matches the voice, but will she be able to compete? The good news, she's gonna get her shot.

Baylie Brown (21; Nashville; nanny) ... is back. She was 16 when she stood in front of Randy, Paula, and Simon in season 6. She made it to Hollywood, but didn't survive Group Round. She was paired with besties from Jersey, one of them being.. Antonella Barba.  Today, she's laying down on a "Bed of Roses" by Bon Jovi. of course she's going to get a shot at redemption after five years. Take THAT Antonella.

Meanwhile, Kristine Osorio (28; Amarillo, TX; student), who always did bar gigs and cafe gigs. She played with her husband until she got pregnant, which sort of threw things off. She's going through a divorce at the moment. She got a loan that was supposed to pay for a lawyer. Instead, she flew to Houston to try out for Idol with "One and Only" by Adele. She's a high-warbler, and the judges love it. She's on her way.

ISS clip #2. I heart science.

Meanwhile at the judges' table, it's Jenny vs. the boys. She'll say yes... they'll say no. Especially to the women. Except for the one case where Jenny says no and the guys say yes.

Alejandro Cazares (26; Houston; cell phone repairman) is next. He says that today is the first day of the revolution. What revolution? Who knows. "Grant me the power to bring revolution to the world." Oh my God he's an Utena fan. He wants the underdog to win once in a while. He sings "Looking Up" by Paramore. And...

... well, if I had a picture of a Duelist losing, it would go here.

Day one had a lot of talent. What will Day 2 have? First up, Cortez Shaw (20; Garland, TX; warehouse worker/student), who grew up in a single-parent household. He believes that only you can define who you will become. He sings "Someone Like You" by Adele. He's got a good voice, but needed to pick a better song. He'll get another shot at it in Hollywood.

We're getting down to it with Julie Shuman (bad), Vanessa Hernandez (worse), Erin "Nire" Kettl (incredibly horrific), and...

... one more. Ramiro Garcia (28; Houston; worship leader). He was born with no ears and the possibility of growing up a mute. But over time, he had surgery after surgery and now not only does he have ears, he has a voice to lead us with "Amazing Grace". That was a leap of faith... and he lands on his own two feet... in Hollywood! He joins a lucky 54 on the road out west.

Next week, we're keeping it weird in Portlandia as the auditions wind down. Until then, good night, Rebecca Dobkowitz, wherever you are.

To see extras from this episode, go to www.americanidol.com.