The songs of John Lennon and Paul McCartney didn't bring out the best of most of the American Idol Top 12 this week, and the odd man out when the votes were totaled was David Hernandez. The one-time gay-club stripper from Glendale, Ariz., was the first of the group to go Wednesday after receiving the least amount of what host Ryan Seacrest said were more than 29-million viewer votes cast. "Things happen for a reason," said Hernandez, 24, who did a shaky version of I Saw Her Standing There on Tuesday that none of the three judges really liked, either. "I think that we all have a plan. . . . You'll be seeing me at the top. This isn't it for me." Also among the three lowest votegetters were Sarasota native Syesha Mercado and Kristy Lee Cook. Mercado started with pitch problems on Got To Get You Into My Life but finished strong. Cook's surreally bad countrified version of Eight Days a Week, slammed by all the judges, had made her a prime candidate to go. Even with all the uneven performances, Seacrest said that the response to the Lennon-McCartney theme was so positive, the final 11 will sing more of the former Beatles' songs next week.
Sharon Fink, Times staff writer