Here's New York! Jennifer is really taken by this guy named J Rome (was his family too poor to afford the extra E in the middle there?). Honestly, he's not that great. I'm not sure what she's talking about.
I guess we're going to find out who she picked on the show, and she picked...J Rome. WTF? That guy was NOT good. I mean, he's good. But Brandon was much, much better. Anyway, their duet is one of Sugarland's songs, "Tonight." They do sound good together and J Rome's harmonies are really on point. Although I didn't think this competition was "America's Next Top Backup Singer," so I hope he gets the spotlight at some point. Also, J Rome has that middle school dance tendency to kind of act out like lyrics when he's not singing, like he points to his heart when she sings about love and he points to his head when she's singing about thinking. His second verse isn't quite as strong as the first and he hits a few bad notes. Ooh, more than a few.
Quddus comes out to interview J Rome, and it turns out that he had an emergency tonsillectomy recently and nearly died and/or lost his voice. Yikes. I guess I can forgive a few bad notes. Quddus explains how the scoring works: the three non-singing pros will rate the performance between one and fifty in the categories of Performance and Presentation, for a total out of 100. And then they'll tell us the rankings at the end.
The judges get to comment first. Kelly says that they sounded great and had a great connection. Robin does a stupid appeal to the audience and doesn't really say anything about the performance. John thinks it was phenomenal and he looks and sounds like a star. So now we get to see his score. Since no one else has performed yet, he's in the first slot. There are eight slots so I'm very confused.
Now we get to find out how John Legend found his duet partner. He saw a bunch of people but he narrowed in on one dude named Johnny. John liked his voice but thought he took too many runs and riffs, and he had trouble hitting some of the higher notes. John asked him to tone it down and sing it straight, and John thought it was much better. But there were clearly some sort of effects on Johnny's voice during that audition scene. And then John picks him. I am so confused about what these people are seeing in their picks. I thought at least two of the auditioners were better than this dude.