March 25th, 2009
09:02 PM ET

Top 10: Anoop Desai gets Smokey

Anoop, have you been holding out on us?

Anoop Desai

Noop Dogg tackled "Ooh Baby Baby" by Smokey Robinson and the Miracles - and it didn't suck.

He had some moments when I thought "Wow, he's a much better singer than I thought." It was a bit slow and I'm not sure if that was supposed to translate as sexy or not.

It just made me sleepy.

What did you think? Is Anoop still in the game?

–Lisa Respers France, CNN.com Writer


Filed under: television

soundoff (94 Responses)
  1. Nala

    Anoop can sing; however, he continues to look like a techy geek that walked on stage. What can he do? Let's see...a spikey hair style and something needs to be done with those eyebrows!!!

    March 27, 2009 at 9:25 am | Report abuse |
  2. Jeanette

    Corney, he is corney! He needs to wear some nice clothes and shoes, he needs a hair cut, he needs, he needs, he needs!
    He and Scott most likely will go home soon.

    March 26, 2009 at 6:12 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Terri S.

    Sorry – not a fan –

    March 26, 2009 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
  4. India

    Great singing Anup, keep up and jazz up a little! Get a Bollywood Sylist, he can do wonders with your Wardrobe and hair. You seem very serious when you sing, lighten up, smile, show you are young! With a great voice you could win it all man.............

    March 26, 2009 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
  5. greer klesk

    Anoop I like him he is good and funny and he is just coming out, can't wait to see what he up to next. I am glad the judges gave him a second chance, I just think they should bring Alexia back and give her a second chance also. Greer

    March 26, 2009 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Elizabeth

    Who ever dresses him should be fired.
    They are trying to make him like a 13 year old boy.

    Get some shoes for God's sake – stop with the sneakers already! He must own some pants other than jeans.

    March 26, 2009 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  7. rojo2000

    Boring....
    He's adds no personality to a song because he has none. He can mimic a song well, but I know at least 10 singers every Saturday night that can mimic a song via karoke, and doi it better.

    March 26, 2009 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Sarah

    Anoop is fantastic - I'm also from Chapel Hill and attend UNC with him. His work with the UNC Clef Hangers has always been in a league of its own, and back in high school he absolutely melted hearts whenever he sang on stage. From a personal angle, he's the kind of guy who I don't think would have ever auditioned for American Idol, but everyone around him knew he'd have a great shot in the competition. I think he may have been insecure and off his game in his early performances because he wasn't at all used to needing to appeal to the audience with anything besides his voice and his personality (and really, he's a hilarious and really kind, gentle guy - which comes out in his vocals). He doesn't fit the Idol mold, which hurts him, both when it comes to getting votes and the way he might approach his performances - but at the same time, he's not something AI is used to seeing, and lord knows the pop/r&b music scene needs some fresh talent.

    March 26, 2009 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  9. May

    beautiful beautiful interpretation, i believe i would prefer to listen to it than the other songs... no throat ramming belt, no special effects, just pure sweet vocals, only thing i care about, only reason i will listen to a song...

    March 26, 2009 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Northwest Nance

    He surprised me this week. It's the first time I really thought he had some talent.

    March 26, 2009 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  11. KitKat

    All you doubtful viewers out there should definitely check out Anoop's legacy on YouTube. He is phenomenal with the UNC Clefhangers!

    March 26, 2009 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  12. coachdms

    to linga ...Anoop is a new star is born , he have a soulful voice and seem very warm . You did mean that Adam Lambert is creepy , right ? then you're right .

    March 26, 2009 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Alex

    ANopp, yes can sing. But this week I was yawning with his interpretation of Smokey' song. I don't see him staying to the top three. In this industry, "image" is a big part. He is not marketable image wise. There is a certain look the music industry looks for, sadly, but, it is a reality.

    Carrie Underwood, Kelly Clarkson, have the image and vocals. Where is Hicks, and Ruben? Fantasia, yes is still around here and there, but not as visible as Carrie and Kelly.

    Anoop, though he can sing, will get lost in the jungle of the music industry.

    Adam, has the image. Megan too, but she does not have the pipes to pull it completely off.

    March 26, 2009 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
  14. dean johnson

    I love Anoop Dawg!!!!

    March 26, 2009 at 12:10 pm | Report abuse |
  15. CINTY

    Yes, he does remind me of Amitabh Bachan. I love him, i hope he makes it to the finals.

    March 26, 2009 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  16. Blanca

    He was just OK. I don't care for him though...some arrogance in him.

    March 26, 2009 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  17. Ann

    Wonderful!! Beautiful!! Incredible!!
    LOVED IT!!

    March 26, 2009 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
  18. karen from Canada

    I think Anoop is one of the best singers there

    March 26, 2009 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
  19. KIMBERLY CESCO

    ANOOP IS AWESOME! ALL OF HIS FANS IN NC LOVE HIM! YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT YOU TUBE AND GO TO clef_hangersillmakelove to you and watch how great anoop is in this singing group from unc chapel hill ~ it is great to see himn on american idol and i hope he continues to do good!

    March 26, 2009 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  20. Anoopfan

    Anoop,Good Luck to U :-)) Hope U stay till the finals. U sure do like the star Amitabh Bachan . Every succesful person has to struggle . So, GO ANOOP !!!!!!!!

    March 26, 2009 at 11:27 am | Report abuse |
  21. Wild Casual

    ANOOP is da MAN! He's genuine, down to earth, and supremely talented. Last night's performance was great. My critique would be on the "Baby, Baby" lines his voice sounded slightly off key, with arrangement and back-up singers.

    March 26, 2009 at 11:27 am | Report abuse |
  22. meghan

    oersonally, I'm a big fan of anoop. Having seen his videos on youtube with the Clef Hangers (the a cappella group he sang with at UNC), I think that he has yet to become completely comfortable on the idol stage. If you haven't seen the Clef Hangers' videos, please check them out, especially "The Only One for Me" and "I'll Make Love to You" because they are fantastic. He has so much stage presence and an amazing r&b style. If he brings the same intensity and confidence to his performances on idol, he will be phenomenal.

    March 26, 2009 at 11:25 am | Report abuse |
  23. mimi

    Im a fan. He did better last week but Anoop has great potential. Something sweet about his voice.

    March 26, 2009 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  24. irish

    Anoop showed us his sultry side, and what a show it was. Now lets see if he can back it up with the more energetic side. He has talent, he just really needs to bring it. People are fickle.....he should know that.... Great job all in all.....

    March 26, 2009 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
  25. Roger T

    Anoop Desai not much to say about this one, he seems to be trying too hard, its like singing in a Karaoke bar. I find his performances boring and nothing original or nothing unique.

    Just another geek who trys too hard.

    March 26, 2009 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
  26. coty

    great sincere singer ! love him

    March 26, 2009 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
  27. Henry

    AMMMAZZZINNNG VOICE. but he needs to step up to win – the competion is tough as well

    March 26, 2009 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
  28. ks

    Anoop is easy to look at, and I think he's a nice guy, but his high notes were FLAT! I'm a musician, and his oooooohhhhhs were flat. Sorry Anoop.

    March 26, 2009 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
  29. October10S

    I love Anoop. He has a great voice, that he's finally beginning to show. He is as sweet as can be and totally adorable. You can tell he appreciates being there, and really is giving it his all. This was a stong performance, and I think he'll only get better. The person who seriously needs to go home is Megan Corkery. She is beyond bad.

    March 26, 2009 at 10:12 am | Report abuse |
  30. Glen Shouse Jr.

    Anoop has really surprised me. I was amazed when he took a Willie Nelson song and made it is own, and to follow it up with a performance like this one is a sign. Anoop is definitely in this to win, but he has some real competition.

    March 26, 2009 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
  31. Moe

    Am I the ONLY one that looks at ANOOP and sees a great singer with ABSOLUTELY NO FIRE? He hits the notes and consistently misses the feeling. He is PAINFUL to watch as he butchers the songs' hearts and leave them deflated like a spent balloon.
    Anoop can sing, but he cannot perform. He is best as a support vocal for someone with some ACTUAL musical soul.
    Please, lets get him out of the competition.

    March 26, 2009 at 9:59 am | Report abuse |
  32. J

    Anoop won't win, but he is really good.

    March 26, 2009 at 9:54 am | Report abuse |
  33. Faye

    Loved Noop. I don't think he's creepy at all. He's a geek fo sho but that's what makes him so appealing to me. And no matter what you say, the kid can sing. Singing a slow song is so tricky because it's easier to catch a mistake on a note or a pitch. The guy didn't falter, not once. I'm sorry – but if you don't think this kid can sing, then you might actually be tone deaf. lol

    March 26, 2009 at 9:53 am | Report abuse |
  34. luke satish

    anoop you have a great future in this career good luck fantastic voice control

    March 26, 2009 at 9:49 am | Report abuse |
  35. bla bla bla

    I strongly disagree with donna 9:48pm, the guy can sing very well!

    March 26, 2009 at 9:48 am | Report abuse |
  36. David

    Just not a fan of Anoop... I mean i can't see him singing love songs.. Just don't see it. no connection.

    March 26, 2009 at 9:29 am | Report abuse |
  37. nelsinny

    WHO IS STYLING ANOOP?! Here we have all the kids dressed up to the "T" and then there's Anoop w/ his little zippered jacket! what is that? He should have worn a smokin' blazer last night! He's a lucky guy – being on Idol this long.. He needs to come up w/ some big time miracle!

    March 26, 2009 at 9:27 am | Report abuse |
  38. Suzanne

    Wow! Anoop's rendition of "Ooh, Baby Baby" was the best that Anoop has done. He was so soulful, so "right on", he really delivered! Anoop deserves a place in the final three. His voice is sooooo fantastic.
    Anoop, you were great! REALLY GREAT. You are definitely in my top three.

    March 26, 2009 at 9:25 am | Report abuse |
  39. Jess

    ANOOP!!! Oh BABY BABY!! Did an incredible job – go Anoop!!

    March 26, 2009 at 9:21 am | Report abuse |
  40. Donna

    Anoop did a great job. Go Anoop!!!

    March 26, 2009 at 9:05 am | Report abuse |
  41. Henry

    Excellent work Noop-Dawg but become more confident and less fearful next time.

    March 26, 2009 at 9:04 am | Report abuse |
  42. cody

    Amazing slow performance

    March 26, 2009 at 9:03 am | Report abuse |
  43. Nutsy

    I did NOT enjoy this at all. He sounded like a girl.

    March 26, 2009 at 9:02 am | Report abuse |
  44. mr vee

    He show no love in the song, you have to sing that song like you love your mother your girl friend your wife he need not show that at all so from [1 to 5 ] I give it a [ 2 ]

    March 26, 2009 at 9:00 am | Report abuse |
  45. MB in NJ

    Anoop needs work. His vocals are very nice, but he is fearful. You can see it in his eyes, and feel it in his body posture. He will not be able to really communicate with the audience and get that stage presence thing going until he lets go of that fear and lets down that barrier of protection. Just let go and go for it.

    March 26, 2009 at 8:40 am | Report abuse |
  46. James

    Anoop was smooth, sounded excellent and proved he's got a great voice!

    March 26, 2009 at 8:33 am | Report abuse |
  47. Denise

    He can sing but I just can't look at him. He looks so awkward on stage I get uncomfortable.

    March 26, 2009 at 8:33 am | Report abuse |
  48. Diane

    Anoop sounded okay, but the guy still gives me the creeps.

    March 26, 2009 at 8:22 am | Report abuse |
  49. West of Detroit

    Loved it!

    March 26, 2009 at 8:10 am | Report abuse |
  50. Jeanne

    Sometimes I like Anoop's voice, but for the most part, there's just something about him that just rubs me wrong. Can't quite put my finger on it. He might be fun to go out to karaoke with, but I can't see him being a superstar. He just doesn't have that quality.

    March 26, 2009 at 7:48 am | Report abuse |
  51. GA girl

    Love his voice. Something about his eyes going cross-eyed and body movement on stage is a little off, but over all, have to say he is very talented. Nice to see that Idol is not monocromatic this year. Is it just me or does he look like Indian heart throb Amitabh Bachan?

    March 26, 2009 at 7:47 am | Report abuse |
  52. Sugrim

    Go Anoop, sing from your soul buddy.

    March 26, 2009 at 7:37 am | Report abuse |
  53. Caroline

    Anoop is the only person in several seasons I vote for regardless of what he sings. I love him. And I genuinely believe he could be in the finals if he can find a middle ground between sweet, soulful Anoop and party Anoop.

    March 26, 2009 at 7:34 am | Report abuse |
  54. betty a

    I think he has a beautiful voice and was singing a slow slong to show something different than the rest. He is so cute and perhaps too humble. I wish he would stand in the front on some of the groups shots I see in pictures. !! Step up!! Lil is always putting herself front and center - step in there!!!!!!!!!!! WE LOVE YOU!

    March 26, 2009 at 7:31 am | Report abuse |
  55. Arlene

    I think that this guy is fantastic and I love to hear him sing ... I do prefer the faster songs that he sings because he really has it going .

    March 26, 2009 at 7:13 am | Report abuse |
  56. Julie

    Anoop is such a doll! He's like a total geek, but you can't help but love him. He could lose some of his cockiness, though, that's a buzz kill. Great song choice tonight. But, I hope & pray that Anoop does not take Randy's advice about not doing ballads. He obviously has forgotten that horrific performance of "Beat It" by MJ that actually, should have gotten him kicked off. My other perplexment (is that a word?) with the judges is that when beating him up about "Beat It", they continuously made the point that that song is a classic & untouchable. Yet, all his song choices since then have also been classic & untouchable, as at least one of the judges has pointed out, but because he did them well, he was not criticized for picking them, as he was with "Beat It". Go figure?

    March 26, 2009 at 4:34 am | Report abuse |
  57. Las Vegas Linda

    Could there be some racial prejudice abounding here?Let's face it, you certainly don't expect to hear a singing voice like his come out of that cute Indian face. Be fair and give the kid of chance. He carries himself well, keeps in tune, does not dress like a slob, combs his hair and appeals to young and old. A class act. I think he will be in the final 3 or 4.

    March 26, 2009 at 3:57 am | Report abuse |
  58. Las Vegas Linda

    I can't believe the voice coming from this talented young man. He has the most beautiful eyes and voice to match.

    March 26, 2009 at 3:53 am | Report abuse |
  59. Fitzwilly56

    I think he can sing, I enjoyed tonight's performance. He's had two good weeks in a row. I ranked him in my top five tonight– Adam, Chris, Allison, Danny then Anoop. I think we'll see him for a few more weeks, but I think he's got an uphill battle when he's up against the likes of Adam (I was putting Gokey in the #1 slot up until tonight, but Adam is just on a higher plain after his performance of Tracks of My Tears).

    March 26, 2009 at 3:28 am | Report abuse |
  60. anoopfan

    Anoop's performance rocked! This guy's got the pipes! I cant wait to see his next performance. Beautiful soulful – this guy is spot on – amazing. With the right producer this guy can go a long way.

    March 26, 2009 at 3:22 am | Report abuse |
  61. MD

    I wasn't a bIg Anoop fan to begin with..he didn't do much of anything for me.

    But honestly after his last two performances, he has impressed me much more than I had originally thought.
    I too would like to see a stronger stage presence from him though. I won't say he bored me tonight, but I guess I want to see him really up his game a little bit more.

    He's not my *favorite*, but I am enjoying him, and actually really interested to see where he goes from here!

    March 26, 2009 at 3:12 am | Report abuse |
  62. Gene

    Anoop may not be the most exciting performer but that boy CAN SING! What a voice. I think he was right on the money with almost every note. Let us all remember that this is not a popularity contest, it is a singing contest and he sang his ass off.

    March 26, 2009 at 3:04 am | Report abuse |
  63. imixxy

    ANOOPDAWG!!!! OOOOOOOOOH BABY BABY!

    March 26, 2009 at 2:44 am | Report abuse |
  64. jerry

    This man will be in the final 3. purity of voice

    March 26, 2009 at 2:05 am | Report abuse |
  65. Chris

    Best performance of the night in my opinion. His best performance this season was last week, but he did really well once again. I just hope he doesn't end up doing something like that rendition of Michael Jackson again...that was horrible. Anoop is a great ballad/soul singer. I hope he wins and I think he's just as good if not better than everyone else in the competition.

    March 26, 2009 at 1:19 am | Report abuse |
  66. lfy

    Linga, when you say this dude is creepy – you must be talking about Adam!

    March 26, 2009 at 12:56 am | Report abuse |
  67. Arlene

    Anoop gave good vocals tonight and I voted for him but someone needs to help him with his clothes. He does not dress like he has star quality, which is needed to sell yourself as a complete package. If he wants to keep getting the votes he has to come better on his next performance.

    March 26, 2009 at 12:30 am | Report abuse |
  68. Michael

    Part of Anoop's issue is he looks too casual. He still feels novelty because he still looks fresh out of the fraternity house. But the boy can sing and his version of "Ooo Baby Baby" was easily one of the better performances of the night.

    March 26, 2009 at 12:29 am | Report abuse |
  69. Landon

    What I like about anoop is that he progresses every week. Thats whats good about this american idol.. as the season moves forward, the players step it up.. Anoop is the man. and his mom is awesome..

    March 26, 2009 at 12:28 am | Report abuse |
  70. Sara

    he is absolutely still in the game! he did an amazing job, and although he may not have been the shining star of the night, he did well enough to make it to next week so he can shine once again. all of his true fans will definitely be tearing up the phone lines tonight to make sure he sticks around!

    March 25, 2009 at 11:59 pm | Report abuse |
  71. Mike

    Along with half this year's last ten, this guy could be singing in top Vegas hotels soon and making a good living. He is just light years away from the talent of Adam.

    March 25, 2009 at 10:58 pm | Report abuse |
  72. Claire

    Part of Anoop's appeal is his smarts. You can see it in his face; the guy's a brain. I think part of him hangs back, watching and going, "Dude, WHAT are you doing?" I'm not sure he can really throw himself into a performance, emotionally.

    March 25, 2009 at 10:55 pm | Report abuse |
  73. Carol

    Anoop along with Scott should be gone soon!!!!!!!!!

    March 25, 2009 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
  74. jason

    This guy takes listens to the feedback from judges. I think he is going to listen to Randy and surprise everyone in the next round. I agree he needs to improve his stage appeal.

    March 25, 2009 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
  75. Trish

    I think Anoop is going to end the show by being the most improved singer. This kid has talent but not sure if he can up his game enough to win.

    March 25, 2009 at 10:35 pm | Report abuse |
  76. Dana

    I liked Anoop's performance...very soft and mellow. He has a very soothing tone to his voice.

    March 25, 2009 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
  77. Satya

    Anoop the next American Idol

    March 25, 2009 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
  78. Tia

    I think his twist was very unique and I disagree on him sounding sleepy – I think it was very touching and sincere. He was one of my few favourites to hear tonight.

    March 25, 2009 at 9:58 pm | Report abuse |
  79. tran

    He is by far...very talented! no question. Anoopdog is gooood and one of my favz! and agree, this season is the best with the best singing talents....all the singers are just amazing but the ones who actually stand out-danny, scott, lil, adam and anoop!!

    March 25, 2009 at 9:36 pm | Report abuse |
  80. Elisa

    That was horrible.

    March 25, 2009 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
  81. Alexis

    By far the best singer ever on American Idol! =)

    March 25, 2009 at 9:24 pm | Report abuse |
  82. Linga

    This dude is really creepy.............I can't stand watching him. He should have been kicked off a long time ago.........

    March 25, 2009 at 9:23 pm | Report abuse |
  83. jen

    Anoop is my favorite this season. Someone different with lots of potential beyond vocals. GO ANOOP!

    March 25, 2009 at 9:21 pm | Report abuse |
  84. Jan

    Anoop may not have the best voice, but there's something appealing about the whole package.

    March 25, 2009 at 9:18 pm | Report abuse |
  85. lin

    If you just close your eyes and listen, Anoop has a great soulful tone, just needs to work on his stage presence....he would be a great demo singer or backup singer. And he's cool and nice.

    March 25, 2009 at 9:18 pm | Report abuse |
  86. Faye

    Anoop is definitely on his game and in the game!!! I also think this is the best season so far. In past years you were lucky to get 2 or 3 good performances a night. This season there are only 2 or 3 really bad performances a night, quite a difference.

    March 25, 2009 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
  87. Dana

    I like this season. The talent is good and I feel the competition. Anoop can sing.

    March 25, 2009 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
  88. donna

    He flat out stinks! I don't understand how he continues to make it.

    March 25, 2009 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
  89. Ann G

    No way, Bruce! This is definitely the best season yet...So much talent!

    March 25, 2009 at 9:07 pm | Report abuse |
  90. anges

    It was okay. I like last season better

    March 25, 2009 at 9:06 pm | Report abuse |
  91. KevinO

    I agree too slow, could have been so much better.

    March 25, 2009 at 9:05 pm | Report abuse |
  92. Dawn

    Beautiful voice!

    March 25, 2009 at 9:04 pm | Report abuse |
  93. Bruce

    Wow. I thought he did suck. personally I think this season is the worse ever.

    March 25, 2009 at 9:04 pm | Report abuse |
  94. Ann G

    Another great week for Anoop! Love him!

    March 25, 2009 at 9:04 pm | Report abuse |

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