The latest Twin Cities entrant on “American Idol,” Mark Andrew, was eliminated from the show Wednesday night as voters whittled down the top 16 contestants to 12.
Known locally by his full name, Mark Andrew Pudas, the Minneapolis-based singer made it through several weeks of competition, impressing the judges with versions of Hozier’s “Take Me to Church” and the Beatles’ “With a Little Help From My Friends” following his winning audition with Bob Dylan’s “Knocking on Heaven’s Door.” He got a lukewarm reception last week, however, with his interpretation of the Temptations’ “Papa Was a Rollin' Stone” during an all-Motown episode.
“It wasn’t really connecting with me,” Jennifer Lopez said. Harry Connick Jr. seemed to better appreciate it but warned, “It felt kinda like a jam band arrangement. I'm not sure if you string too many of those jam band charts together how high you're going to get in the competition.”
Connick was right, it seems. The brother of White Iron Band co-leader Matt Pudas, Mark cut his teeth playing guitar and singing backup with the rowdy, jammy country-rockers at the Cabooze and other area venues. Like fellow W.I.B. alum Nicholas David, Mark was also a contestant on NBC’s “The Voice” before “Idol.”
He told us back in January he believed he had a better chance on “Idol” because of his prior TV experience: “The cameras don’t make you as nervous, and you aren’t as intimidated by the famous people in the room,” he said, which proved true -- but only to a point.
Mark offered a lighthearted reaction to being eliminated on Twitter, where he posted a picture of his infant son Hank with a pouty-looking face.