‘The X Factor’ USA: How CeCe Frey, Arin Ray can avoid bottom two

CeCe FreyIn addition to our contestant rankings (which we will be posting again on Sunday), we’re starting off a new weekly feature pertaining to some of our “X Factor” USA stories: a look at how some of the contestants can avoid landing in the bottom two again. When the full list of results were unveiled from the voting public, there were a good many surprises: Tate Stevens was #1, project favorite Emblem3 was #6, and young pop / R&B singer Arin Ray barely avoided replacing CeCe Frey in the bottom two.

So what can these two singers do to avoid their fate again this time around? We’ve got a list of suggestions below, and we’re trying to include more here than just singing (since we all know that this competition really encompasses so much).

CeCe Frey – For CeCe, the issue is not a question of whether or not she can put on a show: she’s a natural entertainer on stage, and she is the contestant this season that constantly keeps you guessing when it comes to what she is going to do next. What she has to do now is not just work on her vocals, but put herself in a situation where her strongest attributes are shown off better.

If you think back to her best two performances of the season, which to us are “Ain’t No Other Man” and “Sexy and I Know It,” they were fierce but also a little bit playful. We’re not saying that she needs to sing Ke$ha, but adopting some of that carefree attitude and reckless abandon could help her by leaps and bounds. She seems to feel the most comfortable when the performance is more about her than a spectacle surrounding here, so Demi Lovato would be smart to scale this part of her act back, get rid of the dancers, and allow CeCe to not have to worry so much about everything going on around her.

X Factor NewsArin Ray – For Arin, the biggest issue here is really just being remembered. He’s gone early in the show two weeks in a row (which is never great for audience voting), and his songs were rather similar in that it’s hard to sit here and say one was better or worse than the other. He’s almost too much like a young Usher or a Ne-Yo in that it’s hard to see anything about his performances that make him unique.

So what needs to be worked on here? First, he needs to pick a song that will surprise people rather than make them say “go figure.” Maybe turn a rock song pop, or make a ballad into a dance track. Then, he does need to work a bit on his vocals, since for whatever reason his pitch and tone have been overpraised by the judges.

So who do we think will be safe next week? We’ll save that for the rankings tomorrow. For now, we want to hear from you: what should these two do to improve their performances on “The X Factor” USA Wednesday night? If you want to read our piece about some other aspects of the show that need improvement, be sure to click here.

Photo: Fox

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