American Idol Top Three: Hallelujah It’s Almost Over

May 19, 2010

I think I lost 37,000,000 brain cells last night watching that now oh-so-obviously scripted piece of karaoke television called American Idol.

Last weekend was the top three Idols’ homecomings and our local FOX news, even through what seemed to be a monsoon rain, covered Casey James as heavily as the rain pouring down. (that was too easy) Interestingly and tellingly, outside of the obligatory AT&T store front sponsorship, the show ran no footage of the homecoming festivities. You know, it might have swayed the at-home viewers into voting differently from the direction the show wanted to steer the herd. Captain Obvious, Lee Dewyze, did get marginally more air-time, let’s sit and speculate why…OK that was long enough. More air-time and more of everything else.

Casey James selected a song, that if anyone paid attention, an obvious head nod that it was his last night. Song choice, “OK It’s All Right With Me” by Eric Hutchinson. Kara Dioguardi called it an ‘unknown’ song showing what an idiot to the ninth degree she really is.

Sure, cowboy Casey could have selected a number of other songs that may have been a bit better but then he couldn’t blatantly have let on to the folks at home he realizes his time on the show is over.
Casey James “OK It’s All Right With Me”

Randy and Ellen agreed the song was ‘just all right’ for them. Simon baited Kara (it’s just too easy) into a ridiculously overly serious discussion of song climaxing. But then climaxing and Kara go hand in hand.

Kara and RandytheBoBo picked “Daughters” for Casey, a really terrible song selection, it’s a treacly ballad, one of John Mayer’s most lackluster efforts, but with the masses inability to tell good from bad music, made him a lot of money. Casey gives it the lackluster treatment it deserves. I must add, his voice sounds very good on the song; James can actually carry a tune.

Casey James “Daughters”

Kara and Randy attempted to make their song choice out to be stellar – Simon didn’t agree but he does say, rather quietly at the end of the critique that Casey’s vocals sounded quite good.

Crystal Bowersox selected “Come To My Window” by Melissa Etheridge and Ellen Degeneres picked “Maybe I’m Amazed” by Paul McCartney for her. She hauled along her harmonica rig and sporadically played it going for the ‘folk’ singer vibe. I have to hand it to her at least she did not alter the lyrics and kept true to the “Maybe I’m Amazed” song. That said it was not her best night.

I had to take into consideration after watching the theatrics provided Lee, how sparse the settings for Casey and Crystal and cut them a lot of slack. Lee was treated like the second coming of some higher being – goal to inspire the lemmings and peasants to follow the show’s lead and go ga-ga over his out of tune performances. Having the choir come in along with the string section and basically drown him out on “Hallelujah” was a brilliant move. He was out of tune and vocally inept and weak in comparison to anyone else on the history of this show who have sung that song. (Nod to Timmeh.)
Regarding Idol, Jason Castro’s version better than Lee’s.

To go home tonight, after the Idol bus ran over him, Casey James.


American Idol 9: So Close and Yet So Far

March 11, 2010

This week’s American Idol top 16 was a lesson in finding the funny. Seriously, people are we really still thinking this show is all about the music? Let me hit you then with a dose of high reality about this reality show. We can’t even say American Idol has jumped the shark because that would be giving this highly rated karaoke contest some credit for being everything that FOX has wanted it to be, yet it’s not.

Opening the Top 16, Tuesday night we see Ellen Degeneres smoozing up Simon Cowell. Why? To dispell the rumors that started this season that she and Cowell did not get along. Plain and simple. Remember Ellen use to be an actor in a popular evening sitcom so she remembers how to play it Straight… Seriously though, Portia I don’t think you’ve anything to worry about…

Katie Steven the previously thought of Idol favorite once again bombs out on her song. See, people, we can’t go by all the hype coming into this crapfest, it’s all designed to get you to tune in – that or the girl originally came across much better before the show actually started on television. She picks Kelly Clarkson’s hit, “Break Away” and she started way too low and flat and simply floundered pitifully through the rest of the tune. Sadly to top off her dismal vocal performance, she wore a pair of the fugliest pants I’ve ever seen. What were they some sort of camoflage? Seriously, she needed camoflage to fade out of sight after that song. Randy called it karaoke, but that was being way too kind. Simon said she sucked the life out of it. Still he made it clear they still want her on the show. Why? She’s only 17!!!

Siobhan Magnus selected the old classic, “House of Rising Sun”, an old tune I actually like and I like her. She’s so different, odd and rocks originality. She sang it accapella and while it was no Bo Bice “In a Dream” performance it wasn’t terrible. Since the show keeps yanking this season’s contestants’ vids shortly after they hit the Youtube, I’ll put up Bo Bice and his accapella performance instead.
Bo Bice “In a Dream”

Randy gives the best advice this season, “don’t listen to us”. She’s seemingly become the contestant Simon wants to kill off the most, all he can say about her is she’s odd and wierd… I see potential VFTW in her one day.

Lacey Brown did better this week, she performed a song that fit her voice and personality but she’s just not doing much for me at this point. I think she looks much like Nikki McKibben. That’s all I got on Lacey.

Katelyn Epperly tried to make the Earth move with a Carole King tune, she played keyboards. It made absolutely nothing seismic happen in the studio or for us at home. Big bomb for Epperly and is she going for the Howard Stern look? Check it: (Epperly) – the hair and the song a big Mistake.

Didi Benami played her guitar to the Fleetwood Mac song, “Rhiannon”. It was kind of cool, but thing is, Didi sings every song in the same way, identical vocal treatment. Can you imagine listening to that track after track on a CD? The only thing that changes up a Didi Benami performance, the lyrics. My favorite judges’ comment, Ellen’s ‘yes indeedidi’.

I have to pause to comment that Kara must be trying to fill that Paula Abdul void, that or Pauler has some voodoo channeled at Kara and randomly takes over Kara’s body. It’s odd. The hanging next to Simon, her increasingly over the top emotionalism…that wild glazed gleam that shines out from her eyes. Sadly she’s a mere imitation; brought me to the realization that the real Paula does seem to be sorely missing this season.

Anyway, we see the faux crying from Didi, I think at least one tear was shed. I really hate her now. Fraud, fraud, fraud.

I found it ironic Paige Miles picked “Smile” for two reasons, one being Miles and Smile sound similar (yes, I know how first grade of me) and that she nearly wept through the entire song.
Oh look this video still up on Youtube: Paige Miles “Smile”

Randy gives an interesting comment with Paige’s review, “beef, chicken or shrimp” comparing her to a banquet singer. Kara was her bitch face self and well we need not cover them any further.

Crystal Bowersox performed “Give Me One Reason” giving the at-home audience a good reason to pick up their phones and dial. She did a good job. So good in fact, Simon felt the need to get mathematical and rave something about one million billion per cent in the top 12, claiming she’s The One.

Lilly Scott did “I Fall to Pieces” and whereas I did not want to fall into pieces listening to her song delivery (while playing mandolin) she did it interestingly enough. Thing is she continues to remind me of a cross between The Corpse Bride and Cindy Lauper and her songs, like Didi’s all sound alike. Too I think ‘quirky’ a word becoming way overused this season. Someone send the panel a Thesaurus.

Wednesday night opener had Ryan doing some sort of strange pretend military type scene with walking in front of the guys and shouting their names into their faces. Only Alex Lambert seemed to acknowledge the ridiculousness of this and could not stop giggling.

Lee Dewyze picked that horrible song that is being overplayed on the radio, “Firefly” by some band named Owl or something. (Google is your friend.) He was stiff, and sounded pretty terrible on my end. I did get a chuckle out of his seemingly earnest delivery of such a stupid song. I find him dull and lifeless with a complete lack of personality or spark of any kind. I could care less what the judges had to say, did not write it down so can’t recall.

Giggling mullet-boy, Alex Lambert has an interesting voice but please, after Taylor Hicks did Ray LaMontagne’s “Trouble” during his season on the show, Alex should not have gone there. Thin imitation of the song and Hicks still rules it for the show.
Taylor Hicks, “Trouble” (Alex’s version needs not be posted.)

The Vote for the Worst pick, Tim Urban, found a bit more of a voice this week and did the song that helped make Jason Castro so popular on the show, Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”. Tim played acoustic guitar, (which seemed the rage tonight) and delivered his best vocal yet. Best thing about the night so far, Ellen pulled a new judge trick and actually rushed the stage. The look of near fear on Timmy’s face hilarious. Good TV moment.

Gokeycia, aka Andrew Garcia peaked too soon, Kara said. Hell I think he was just a fluke this entire time. Had his best moment in Hollywood week and it’s been down hill ever since. He tried to do to “Genie in a Bottle” (Christina Aguilera) ala the “Straight Up” Paula Abdul tune and failed miserably. It was beyond terrible and I hope he goes home soon or we’ll see his goggled mug on the VFTW banner before this season ends. He continues to show he has no vocal range, tone, melody or personality.

Thank the music gods Casey James left that Jessica Simpson look behind, he came out with messy ponytail, acoustic guitar and did a Keith Urban song, “Think of Me”. I’m not a Keith Urban fan so not familiar with his music but I thought Casey did an excellent job, excellent, especially after what I had endured previously. He still needs to let it go and set himself free on that stage. Man, find that inner wild man spirit, I know it’s in there someplace…

Girly boy Aaron Kelly was up next, looks like he’s trying to grow out those previously over plucked eyebrows. He sticks to his usual country type vibe and does “I’m Already There” by Lonestar. Now regarding Lonestar, all I know is that Hallmark has a Sound card out with one of their songs, saw that at the local Walgreens when birthday card shopping last week. He’s quite terrible.

Good Singing? Yes that’s what was said of Todrick (Fraudrick) Hall’s weak yet theatrical Adam Lambert impersonation during his song choice, “Somebody to Love”. Funny comment from the judges’ panel – he sounds so Broadway. Hello, back in the initial auditions he told them he had done Broadway in that musical Fantasia was in, so no revelation here, they knew what they were getting from the start.

Big Mike, Michael Lynche, styled himself donning a suit ensemble on the top of his torso ending with jeans and sneakers. He was by far the most entertaining of the night.

Michael Lynche definitely showed some range in his vocals, but I’m not sure if that was a good thing. Big Mike went from vocals that sounded like dolphin cries, in “This Woman’s Work” to bellowing out the big low long notes ala Reuben Studdard.

RandyTheBoBo slobbered all over himself, Ellen declared OMG!!! Then we had the beauty that was Kara crying as if she’s in the midst of a hormonal surge combined with too many shots of Tequila. Simon could barely speak with Kara’s watery mess next to him. Now that was entertainment.

My picks for going home, Aaron Kelly, Fraudrick, Paige Miles and Katelyn Epperly.


Jason Castro Signs With Atlantic Records. Really.

April 11, 2009

Jason Castro announces he’s been signed to Atlantic Records. No, I’m not daydreaming, check this video if you haven’t seen it already – featured on Billboard.com.

Hit IDOL BLUES for video.

I imagine this makes his family quite happy. Well, maybe not Michael so much.