First, RyRy’s introduction of Paula Abdul gave me an enormous sigh of relief- thank God there is only one Paula Abdul. Second, the new (old) format still doesn’t sit right with me, as it doesn’t allow for growth. Third, I want whatever Paula’s taking.
Yes, it’s that time again, time to dash the hopes of all mediocre singers and pimp even worse singers. Idol is back in force, and they didn’t disappoint.
First up, Jackie Tohn, who has a natural rasp that many previous girl rockers have tried to fake. But she wastes it on an Elvis track , ” A Little Less Conversation”, matched only by her Minnie Mouse as a prostitute outfit ( seriously, girl, that was heinous). It wasn’t pretty, but it would not end up being the worst of the night. Randy wasn’t blown away, Kara liked how she worked the stage, Paula said something incomprehensible, and Simon called it ungainly and gimmicky. First shot, Simon, bet it felt good.
Ricky Braddy was next. Does anyone remember seeing him ever in the audition rounds? I don’t. And that’s a shame, because he was a surprise, nailing Leon Russell’s difficult ” A Song For You”. He seems pleasant, kind of Archuleta bland, but considering some of the people who got through to the top 36, I might have to fight for the guy. Randy complimented Ricky’s great tone, Kara called it effortless, Paula said… something, and Simon said he had a good voice but lacked charisma ( legit critique).
Alexis Grace is one of my favorite girls, ans going with ” I Never Loved A Man The Way I Love You” was gutsy ( it’s not an Aretha song that has been over done on the show). I thought she did a credible job on it. Randy was loving it, Kara dug it, Paula drank some tequila, and Simon said the magic words- Kelly Clarkson.
Brent Keith is one of those ringer types, having appeared on Nashville Star a few years back. His version of ” Hicktown” was harmless but unmemorable. Randy said new edge with old swagger, Kara called it safe, Paula took some Quaaludes, and Simon called it forgettable.
Oh, and a note to all contestants- SHUT THE FUCK UP! TAKE YOUR CRITICISM LIKE A GROWN UP AND QUIT MAKING EXCUSES. I’m done.
Stevie Wright crashed and burned fiercely, as her version of Taylor Swift’s ” You Belong With Me” made me want to see Taylor Swift sing it live. But along comes ANOOOOOOOP! Anoop Doggy Dogg in da HOWIZ! Granted, his song choice was insanely weird ( ” Angel Of Mine” by Monica, a song I have never liked). But he sang it well, and he’s still my early fave. Randy said he was sharp ( true), Kara said he had great potential, Paula muttered something about Brian McKnight, and Simon said Anoop was tremendously likeable.
Casey Carlson took a risk with ” every Little Thing She Does Is Magic”, but the judges are right- don’t take on a song sung by Sting, you are asking to have your ass handed to you. And hers was. It was terrible, matched by those facial ticks and the neck touching thing.
Michael Sarver, pleasant enough guy with cute kids, did the perennial ” I Don’t Want To Be” by Gavin DeGraw. Pitchy,lacking in the soul and range Gavin DeGraw brings to the song ( or the grit of Bo Bice, who nailed that song back in season four). He is also bland.
Anne Marie Boskovich took on ” Natural Woman” (everyone all together- Kelly Clarkson, Season One, stupid move, Anne Marie). She lacks the vocal depth to sing the song, and I never believed her. Simon’s critique was the only one spot on- the song was simply to big for her voice.
Stephen Fowler, who blew away everyone Hollywood week with a pitch perfect version of Stevie Wonder’s ” Superwoman”, disappointed with a weird version of Michael Jackson’s ” Rock With You”. The judges called him on song choice, with Simon going as far as calling it pointless.
Now for the pimp heavy part of the show.
Shriekianna appears, screeching her way through Whitney’s ” I’m Saving All My Love For You”. Pitchy, too low to start, wavering on her hold notes, dropping her glory notes- and they loved her. Pimp pimp pimp. Fifty Cents want’s his job designation back. Simon couldn’t even muster a complaint worth mentioning. PIMP.
Last was the real ” pimp star”, Danny Gokey, who really is a good singer, but whom I’m not liking as he seems to be exploiting personal tragedy for personal gain. His rendition of ” Hero” was pretty rote, as were the judges comments ( “blazing hot”, ” incredible”, “stellar”). Simon was at least restrained in his praise. Was I the only one who thought Danny sounded constipated?
Over all, it was okay. Bur the three who should stay are Anoop, Alexis, and Ricky. My gut’s telling me though it’ll be Danny, Tatianna, and Anoop. If that’s the case, kill me now. And we haven’t gotten to Norman Gentle yet.
Tomorrow- the results, which are sure to piss me off.