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Previous Episodes
September 21

Simon Cowell returns to enlist three more industry heavyweights to find the next great pop act.

Recaps by Chico Alexander & Gordon Pepper, GSNN
Host Steve Jones
Judges Paula Abdul
Simon Cowell
Antonio "LA" Reid
Nicole Scherzinger
Creator Simon Cowell
EP Andrew Llinares
Rob Wade
Simon Cowell
Cecile Frot-Coutaz
Richard Holloway
Siobhan Greene
Packager Syco TV
FremantleMedia North America
Origins CBS Television City, Los Angeles
Web thexfactorusa.com
Airs 8p ET Weds & Thurs, Fox
@The X Factor (USA)

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Auditions 2: Miami/Dallas
September 22

Last night, "The X Factor" finally dropped in America. Ordinary people became stars... while other ordinary people... just became YouTube fodder. But the search for the next big thing in music continues in...

BankUnited Center, University of Miami

First up is Ashley Sansone (27, unemployed starving artist). She likes to be stylish, and she'll stop at nothing to bring her energy ... and she does have enough to waste ... with "Piece of My Heart" by Janis Joplin... and you should've paid the rent with the cash you spent to get here. You were on LA's nerves with your talking... and now he wants to slit his wrists.

Next, Chanel Samarie Dixon (34, hairdresser), Kanen Road (27-30), the Dreamgirlz (39-15), and Marissa Hopson (29, internet blogger)... all suck out. What will we see out of... Gloria Estefan?

Okay, next is Caitlynne Curtis (16, HS junior), who brought her entire family with her. She'll be doing the piano version of "Firework" by Katy Perry. Nicole says that there's room to grow, and Simon agrees, telling her she's better off in a group with "three or four girls her age." It's a no from both of them. She's just not ready yet.

Nick Voss (21, Hialeah, FL) is a family man who got a job to support his family. He's got a lot in common with Simon, who's put $5 million on the line to find a star. So they're kindred. Will that resonate in this performance of "Trouble" by Elvis? Our first pass in Miami!

Ashley Deckard (14, Davie, FL) is a ghost hunter. For real. She tries out Jessie J's "Price Tag"... Ghost HUNTER busted. She's not quite there yet. And the ghosts of rejects past continue to haunt with Soraya Narasallah (45, caregiver) and... then a power flash. Meanwhile, Kevin Martin (54)... and then another power flash.. Marivana Viscuso (50) is at least passable to start... and to finish.

Next up, the Miami heat with 2Squar'd. Great harmony, great look... Four yeses! Kendra Williams (32, teacher), Brendan O'Hara (30, music instructor), and Jeremiah Pagan (22, student) follow suit. Even as Jeremiah sounds kinda girly.

Melanie Amaro (18, freshman in college from Sunrise, FL) has the love of her family to fall back on, but she has to leave it on stage with "Listen" by Beyonce. She wins over the crowd. Hands down the best audition in the series so far and a serious early threat. LA says she's amazing. Needless to say, it's a yes... or four.

American Airlines Center

The judges have landed at the house that Dirk built to find hot sun... and hotter talent?

First up is Johnny Rogers (17, student), who spends a lot of time on his hair. He says that Justin Bieber stole it from him. He sings an original... and he should've spent more time on his vocal and less time on his hair. LA likes his energy, Nicole likes the choreography. Paula likes surprises. Simon... well, we don't know what he's trying to say, but it translates to "it wasn't quite right". "The Justin Bieber Song Gone Wrong."

Next up, we're putting our boot-scootin' best boot forward (and so is Nicole, apparently) with Dylan Lawson (18), who loves playing boondocks music in Kentucky. He sold his truck and took the money to go to Dallas. He wants to get another truck... but first, he wants to... do something with his Bugatti. Good for you. And he dies on stage. Check your bladder.

Wesley Kimbell (40, sales associate)... Michael & Michelle (19, 21)... Curtis "Phoenix" Lawson (20)... all of them are bad. The judges remain optimistic that they'll find someone like Dexter Haygood (49, bar singer from Memphis), who calls himself a rock-and-roll soul man. He used to be a lead singer of a band called Xavion, but they fell through. He is using this as a second chance. He sings "Sex Machine" by James Brown. Well, they met him, and now they want to hear something else. He has one more shot at it as we learn just how important this is... He tries again with "It's a Man Man Man's World". Infinitely better. But is it good enough to move forward? It is.

Joining him: Kyle Corr (20, hog farmer), Hannah Jackson (31, teacher), Ma'at Bingham Shango (12, student), and Austin Simmons (21, hair dresser). What about Caitlin Koch (21, rugby coach from Buffalo). She's a scrum-half, but will she crouch, pause, and engage with a twist on "Stop in the Name of Love"? That was Diana Krall level soulful. She's very authentic, and the judges like it.

It's coming down to the wire. Xander Alexander (no relation) (27 from NYC) claims Whitney before she lost it, Mariah Carey before she lost it, and Britney Spears and Beyonce without the ugly husbands as icons. He describes himself as Lady Gaga on crack. He'll sing "I'll Be" by Edwin McCain.

... Eventually.

... Someone call Fox 50, they're going to have to run the news late. One line in... and they're done with him. Next try is "Fool in Love". And it is... a no. From LA.... and Paula. Moral of the story... don't get the audience against you. Sorry, Xander, but you blew it.

And that's it for Dallas and Miami. The search for $5 million talent continues - without Xander - next week.

To see extras from this episode and a Pepsi Precap of the next episode, visit thexfactorusa.com.