Showing posts with label singing competition. Show all posts
Showing posts with label singing competition. Show all posts

Thursday, April 25, 2013

American Idol 12: Top 4 Performances

Well, this season of American Idol is quickly coming to an end. The Powers That Be have managed to get there wish for this season; a girl will win. These four remaining contestants are all reasonably good, but are they all better than any guy who auditioned this year. Probably not. But Idol gets what they want and possibly deserve this year; four girls who can sing ballads. At least Angie can pick a current artist occasionally and sound somewhat current. I actually like her more Christian sounding songs better, but I know she can't do only Christian music on Idol. That would probably burst Jimmy's and Nicki's eardrums.

But enough babbling. I'll leave that for the judges comments.

This week's themes:
Contestants Choice  (I bet they pick ballads.)
ATT Viewer's Choice  (I bet it's something old.)
Duets (I bet they are current artists, but not in both contestants wheelhouse.)

This week the girls all visited the Los Angeles Children's Hospital and spent time with the kids.

Performances of Contestants Choice Theme is first.

Amber- Celine Dion- "The Power of Love"
I told you it would be a ballad. This girl needs to stop singing diva songs and try something more relatable to girls her age if she wants them to vote for her.
Amber starts out A Capella, standing at the top of a rather tall staircase. The soft beginning is nice, when she gets to the power parts, it sounds like she is straining, almost yelling instead of projecting her voice. I just don't like this sound at all.
Keith-- "That is how you do it. That was a perfect song choice for you."
Nicki-- "You're up there looking like a big sexy glass of milk. I want a moment of silence for how beautiful you are. That song was made for you."
Randy-- "Nicki, she's more like a black and white cookie (referring to the outfit she is wearing which has white front of pants and black back) Amber, you came in as a baby, and now you're a pro. You are ready."
Mariah-- You took a classic song and gave it flavor.
Jimmy-- Amber is picking these classic songs with range. The constant singing is causing stress and he heard that stress in her upper range tonight. But that song will be tough to beat. (But why will it be hard to beat if it wasn't perfect? Doesn't he think anyone else can sing their song perfectly? Let's just all blatantly push Amber for the win.)

Candice- Drake- "Find Your Love"
I don't know this song. Interesting beginning. No precise melody. Not sure if that is true with the original or not. Candice sounds a little off tonight. Maybe she's just tired.
Nicki-- Yesterday I told Drake you were going to sing his song, so maybe tomorrow I can get his reaction from him. I thought you could have kept more of the melody.
Randy-- Vocals are crazy good, and it's not that it's old fashioned, you just don't need runs in every phrase. Refer to the melody. You don't want to sound like a "church girl" all the time. (That comment just might have advanced her further in the competition, since a lot of "church going people" watch Idol.)
Mariah-- I must comment on the vocals because you took me to a place I needed to be. With the piano and everything on stage with you, this was a more "adult contemporary" performance.
Keith-- I love what you did with that song. I heard Candice. I don't hear what Market you're in, I hear you finding Candice. I love the power in the quiet moments in your voice.
Jimmy-- I love Drake. I love that song. I love Candice, but I agree with Nicki this time. That was the second best performance of the night. (Of course, it was only the second performance of the night so...)

Kree- Susan Tedeschi- "It Hurts So Bad"
This is country meets blues. Kree sounds off tonight. She's flat on some of the lower notes. The power of the song is bland and blah.
Randy-- You love you some blues, don't you? I don't know if that's the best vocal for you.
Mariah-- I wasn't familiar with he song so I listened on the way here and thought it has Kree written all over it. But I only felt you on certain sections  when you connected.
Keith-- All four of you girls can sing, so now we're coming down to the emotions. At this point the emotions have to make my heart break, and I know you can do that.
Nicki-- You look sexy in red. (Wearing a red top) That performance is not going top give you what you need for next week. You need to meditate and see what you were doing before. Even if you leave tomorrow, you will have a great career.(It's the kiss of death for Kree this week.)
And then Nicki going into some cussing and ranting that the censors did not delete enough of.
Jimmy-- Kree is going to hurt herself with song choices. That was the wrong song. (Wasn't it just in the last two weeks when they were all saying that Kree couldn't pick a bad song? I guess they were wrong.)

Angie- Jessie J- "Who You Are"
Angie is seated at the piano. Very nice soft beginning. Power in the middle. Nice job. Standing O from the judges.
Mariah-- The caliber of that performance was beyond. That was a professional moment. Stunning.
Keith-- What I loved about that is you started prim and proper, but as it went along, you got looser.
Nicki-- It's unbelievable how when you are on the piano, you believe it and we feel it. Exceptional.
Randy-- You made me forget its a Jessie J song. That was an Angie performance. the best performance of the night. She's in it to win it.
Ryan brings Angie's grandma up to the stage from the audience. Que the tears.
Jimmy-- I'm thrilled to see Angie get control over that powerful instrument she has. She's neck and neck with Amber. ( In my book, she's far head of the rest of the pack.)

Duet time.
Amber and Kree- Adele- "Rumor Has It"
We get four tom toms on the stage to accompany them, which is two too many in my opinion. Kind of drowning them out. This is a powerful emotion song being sung without emotions. The girls are smiling at each other and there is no intensity to it at all. Keith is bopping along to the drum beat.
Keith-- What a great song. Interesting because you two have such a different stance at the mic. Amber, you suddenly have this commanding stance. Kree, you normally sing so effortlessly. Someone really needed to cut loose on this song.
Nicki-- I never thought I'd see the day shy Amber was commanding the stage from Kreedom. Kree, you need to get back to being in the song.

Candice and Angie- Rihanna and Mikky Ekko- "Stay"
Oh, this is such a change from the other duet. These girls have passion and attitude. They get a standing o from the judges and the audience. (And from me too.)
Randy-- Unbelievable. That's how you do a duet.
Mariah-- I don't know how you did that in all that smoke.

Time for theme Numero Dos:
The ATT viewers theme is "One Hit Wonders."

Amber- Richard Harris song later popularized by Donna Summer- "MacArthur Park"
Now this is an oldie, but not a goodie. Why would they let her sing this song? Better question, why would she want to sing this song? It wasn't even good back in the day, much less now. This is boring. Amber is not hitting the long upper notes clearly this time. And she is still flat on the lower end of her register. She is not supporting her notes.
Keith-- "Good Lord. What is going on? You're dominating tonight. that was an incredible performance."
Nicki-- You're effervescent. I like your lipstick, but I would take off that necklace and those shoes.Out of the 4 girls in this competition, you're the one I would want to get to know.
Randy-- If y'all don't know who Amber is, you should know she's in it to win it. Hitting all those crystal clear high notes, in tune.
Mariah-- You have an inner glow hitting us. Your lower notes were gorgeous. You're getting star quality.
Jimmy-- The judges missed the point. I didn't buy that song when Richard Harris or Donna Summer sang it and I didn't buy it when Amber sang it. That song is corny and even Amber can't pull off corny.

Candice- Samantha Sang song later popularized by The Bee Gees
Another old song. Blah!!!  The backup singers even have the best lines of this thing. Not great choice. but I bet they didn't have a lot of great songs to chose from either.
Nicki-- That's a classic but I was still grooving to it.
Then the judges all forget about Candice and start talking about what Jimmy said about Amber's performance.
Randy-- Back to Candice- Yes, Yes, Yes. Another great performance.
Mariah-- People need to realize how hard it is to maintain your voice in a competition like this and the way you have been singing since day one is beyond comprehension. You have a cold, don't you? Candice says yes, but she didn't want people to know and feel sorry for her.
Keith-- Are there any "One Hit Wonders" from the last decade? No one tonight has had a song that makes them stand out.

Ryan brings out Jimmy and Nicki and Randy trot up on stage to make asses out of themselves with Jimmy.

Kree- Procol Harum- "A Whiter Shade of Pale"
Another slow song from Kree. It's not a song with a lot of "pop" to it. Kind of Blah.
Randy-- You can flat out sing. That was brilliant.
Mariah-- I have no words. You should feel good about what you did.
Keith-- I'm gonna disagree. This was another middle ground song for you. It didn't have any moments.
Nicki-- I love you and that performance, but I don't think it will keep you out the of bottom 2 this week.

Angie- Julie London- "Cry Me A River"
Wow, this performance is really haunting with all of the string accompaniment. Beautiful job, even though it is another slow song. This one has emotions and power oozing from every pore.
Mariah--How do you critique that, it was classic. Beautiful and elegant.
Keith-- Mystical and celestially powerful.
Nicki-- "You came out tonight to snatch some wigs off some heads, honey-child." Tonight was your night.
Randy-- Yo, Yo! the Best of the night. Angie wins the night hands-down. Ryan, this girl is in it to win it.


Ryan teases us with "Tomorrow night, a surprise twist in the competition will be announced."  Oh, I wonder what the surprise will be. Maybe they are bringing Lazaro back. Nah! I bet they are keeping the judges save for a rainy day, so Amber doesn't get voted off before the final two.

My rankings from best to worst this week:
Angie, Candice, Kree, Amber

So, who do y'all think goes home tonight? Or does anyone leave the competition this week?




Friday, January 25, 2013

American Idol 12: Baton Rouge Auditions

We are visiting the bayou of Louisiana for this show. Bring on the strange people and gators. Baton Rouge also happens to be Randy's home town. Keith says all the good music comes from the South.

Mariah is doing Randy's make-up for today's show. She says she was a beauty school drop-out.

Our first contestant is the current Miss Baton Rouge. She is also on crutches.
Megan Miller- 22- Ethel, LA- Miss Greater Baton Rouge
She was is an accident a few days before the audition and should be in the hospital but had to make the audition (extra camera time assured). heading back for surgery immediately after audition time. wearing her heels while rocking her crutches. "Something's Got A Hold On Me" She is very soulful with a nice voice and sassy attitude. Not working the sympathy angle too much.  Yes X4 from judges.

Charlie Askew- 17- Little Rock, Arkansas
Charlie was a socially awkward child who had a difficult time communicating. He has always been able to communicate through music. Singing the intro to "Breakthrough" by Queen. Interesting. Second song is "Nature Boy" which is totally awesome. Very easy to hear the musicality in his voice with this choice.
Randy says he is a seemingly dark, but cool man. Keith says his voice is not like others, it is his own. Yes X4 and he's on the way to Hollywood.  His mom said that the doctors say he has "Charlie Askew Syndrome" because they can't classify exactly why he is like he is.  Personally, to me he seems to be very high functioning autistic. What ever the case, he has a wonderful voice. I hope he is able to deal with Hollywood, because I want to hear more from Charlie.

Time for Randy to personally invite someone to the auditions.
Maddie Assel- 17- Centreville, VA   Nominated by grandmother.  This girl looks and acts older than 17.  "Oh Darlin'" the Beatles is her song choice. She has an unusual voice. Very Southern I guess. She does a nice job. She's cute, confident, and has her own style.
Yes X4 and on the way to Hollywood.

As Ryan tells us "the tide has turned" we get a montage of horrible auditions.  Thanks for keeping it short producers.

Paul Jolley- 22- Palmersville, TN
Paul says singing is his calling in life. He wants to give back like his recently departed grandfather did.
"I Won't Let Go" by Rascal Flatts is a great song choice for his voice. This guy is very happy and has a nice sparkle in his eyes. He also sounds like he has vocal training.  Yes X4.

Judges are getting tired. Enter the weird dude of the day.
Chris Barthel- 24- Metairie, LA
 He says his alter ego sings. Nicki names his alter ego :Mushroom" and he sings "If I Had You" by Adam Lambert. Yep, that was weird. He is funny though. No go for Hollywood.

Dr Calvin Peters- 27- Ft Worth, TX- Physician
Yes, he is an actual 3rd yr resident at a Vetern's hospital. They call him "The singing doctor." He sings a Maxwell song and the judges are amazed.  Yes X4.

Now for a montage of auditions:
Michelle Montezeri- 19- Orlando, FL   R&B style
Breanna Steer- 18- LaPlace, LA    R&B style
Brandy Hotard- 26- Port Allen, LA (Nurse)  Country - sang "Hell On Heels"
Yes X4  X3.  Now we have a doctor and a nurse in Hollywood. Maybe everyone can stay healthy.

Dustin Watts- 27- Albany, LA- Fireman in Baton Rouge.
Dustin is a big ol' boy. Nicki is ready to be saved.
He sings "She's Every Woman" by Garth Brooks and sounds great.  Perfect country voice. You can tell he is the happiest with Keith's comments.  Yes X4 and we get to go along as he tell the guys at the station that he's going to Hollywood.

Our extra sad back story of the night belongs to :
Burnell Taylor- 19- New Orleans, LA
Family road-out and survived Katrina. They lost everything but not each other. Moved to Baton Rouge. His grandfather was the leader of a band and played several instruments. His mom is a singer. He doesn't play any instruments but wants to learn.
"I'm Here" from The Color Purple is his song choice. Keith is ecstatic, can barely contain himself and is the first on his feet. Mariah is crying. Nicki is stunned.
Randy- "amazing voice." Keith- "You could turn an atheist. Somewhere there is a spotlight waiting for you to walk into it."
Yes X4 and Ryan tells him "you changed that panel forever. They just experienced something they hadn't experienced while they've been out on the road."

So we get 35 Golden Tickets to Hollywood in Baton Rouge.

My favorites : Burnell and Charlie.

Next week Idol takes on my home town of San Antonio.