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Rodney Ho covers TV and radio, from Atlanta’s stations to the hottest “American Idol" news.

'American Idol' Atlanta auditions recap

Atlanta is in the house! And we see plenty of talent in the space of an hour.

We get a lot of Connie Seacrest first, including her videotaping Ryan waking up in his childhood house.

In the end, 44 people make it through in Atlanta, including four from the state of Georgia itself. Bria from Lithonia, Nica from Milledgeville and Nico from Atlanta are all in.

Plus, we saw eight people who will eventually make it to the final 31.

Up first:

- Majesty Rose brings some great singer-songwriter Tracy Chapman-esque music. "Refreshing," Harry Connick Jr. said. "Subtle and elegant." "Effortless," J. Lo said. IN!

- Jesse Cline, a gas station attendant, looks like a shlub but sounds fine with plenty of soul. Likable, too. HCJ said he's believable. IN.

Alyson Ragona plays a ukele and sings Queen. But they aired her only so HCJ could make a David Bowie/cat joke. OUT

Chris Medina brought his dog along. When I was there and took this photo, I did not see the dog. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/

Chris Medina brings Bobby, the dog. His singing starts weak, gets better. "He's got the goods," J. Lo said. "I believe you. I believe I have a wet spot on my pants," HCJ said. IN.

Emily Purlz and Kristen O'Connor get a semi-montage. Purlz has more personality, O'Connor a better voice. Both get in.

Ben Briley from Gallatin, Tenn. goes for my wife's favorite act Amos Lee. He's not bad. Very ordinary looking. IN.

Nica Nashae from Milledgeville, GA sings really loud. The judges liked her. IN.

Jordan Brisbane from Savannah tries Bruno Mars. He has potential but he does like the runs a bit much. "Be very careful when you sing runs. There are people who do it better than you," HCJ said. But he said, "you're a pretty good singer. And in ten years, you'll be a much better singer." Keith: "Raw talent." IN.

Now I know why they were shooting Ben Briley while I was waiting for the judges to show up last October. He made it to Hollywood! CREDIT: Rodney Ho/

Sam Burchfield, a UGA student, has a bright personality and a quirky vocal style. "It was very original," J. Lo said. "I really love your voice," Keith said. "You sing with this weird impediment. I didn't buy it." He got two yesses and is IN.

Jessica Meuse from Slapout, Ala. has a Stevie Nicks vibe but I don't think she sounds like her. She is a rocker, though with an edgy look. I'm a fan. "You seem low maintenance. It was easy," HCJ said. Easy IN.

Bad singers: Travis-Hunter Brown with the ukele. Then two more with no names attached. OUT.T

Lauren Ogburn tries to be edgy country and she does a decent Reba cover. "Goosies," J Lo said. "Authentic," Keith. "Overaccessorized," HCJ. IN.

Two former season 11 Hollywood participatns: R&B/pop singer Neco Starr of Atlanta and rocker Caleb Johnson. HCJ didn't quite "get it" with Starr but he said yes anyway (Keith said no and J. Lo said yes.). Caleb got yesses across the board. Both IN.

Bria Anai Johnson from Lithonia sings Adele. I really like her voice. She has sparkly lips, too, which HCJ thought might be a distraction but not in this case. She seems destined to go far in Hollywood. IN

These were four contestants awaiting their fate right before I left that day. Second to left is Ben Briley. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/

Video of two of the Atlanta folks:

Kristen O'Connor:

Kristen Oconnor & Emily Piriz - Auditions... by IdolxMuzic

Nica Nashae:

Nica Nashae - Natural Woman - American Idol 13 by IdolxMuzic

And here's the woman Jess Meuse we all think will make the live shows for sure:

Jessica Meuse - Blue Eyed Lie - American Idol 13 by IdolxMuzic

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About the Author

Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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