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Mariam and her friend bargained their way into the Houston Idols live show…after her grandma threw away her tickets! Check out her recap below.
Hi everyone! I’m Mariam, also known as Mariam94 on MJ’s blog. I’m 16 years old and this is my first Idol concert. I’ve been watching Idol ever since it started but never got into it until Season 7 when my favorites were the Davids. I didn’t watch Season 8, but began watching again this season and was super excited to attend the tour! I went with my friend Kim, who is a huge Lee and Didi fan. My favorite this year was also Lee, but I really like all of them and think they’re all super talented. I will try to give you my honest opinion, so hope y’all enjoy my recap!
Well let me begin by saying that the day didn’t start off too well. My friend Kim and I were about to leave when we realized we didn’t know where our tickets were. Turns out my Grandma, who likes to clean up the house spotless every time she comes over, accidentally threw them away earlier. The trash cans were already empty by the time we came to check. It was almost six o’clock, but determined to see this concert, me and my friend drove to the Woodlands Pavilion anyway, hoping we could get some tickets there. Right off the bat, some guy runs up to us just as we’re heading to the gates and asked us if we needed tickets. They were pretty good seats and worth a hundred dollars each, but using my bargaining skills, we managed to get them for fifty dollars each. He also had some lawn seats for $25, but afraid it would start raining again, we decided against it.
Relieved and overjoyed about our good fortune, we got in line. As we were waiting, I saw some guy walking around in a purple hat with a VIP tag. After staring for a while, I realized it was Ryan Stevens! No one seemed to recognize him, so I guess I could’ve ran over and got pictures, but the line was so long we didn’t want to lose our spot! Finally, the gates opened. Me and Kim went right to the merchandise store and bought stuff. I got a t-shirt, program, a picture of Lee, and a picture of Tim for one of my friend who couldn’t make it. Everything was so overpriced! $4 for a water bottle?! Haha, well we were pretty happy once we got to our seats. They were worth the money I thought. The venue was pretty much full from what I could see! Happy such a good number showed up. There were quite a few people in the lawns too. After a few ford music videos and videos from former Idols, it was time for the concert!
Didi was up first, and let me just say, she’s absolutely gorgeous! Her rendition of “Lay It On Me” was nice and I thought she sounded great. Yes, it’s not the best song to open up a concert with, but it was still good. I felt kind of bad though, because people were still coming in and getting settle while she was singing, but what can you do. Next, she told us how terrified she was when she first sang this song, and of course it was “Terrified”. This was the song that made me a fan of hers at the beginning of the show, so I was excited to here it live. I thought the uniqueness in her voice really showed in this. I wanted to be loud for her, but the crowd was pretty subdued at this point, so I just clapped as loud as I could.
Next was Andrew Garcia and he just came out and immediately started singing his version of “Straight Up”. I never did like Andrew much on the show but he was awesome on this! Me, Kim and few people here and there stood up and sang along. He told us to stand up and dance on “Sunday Morning” and the crowd actually did! Overall, I thought his set was very fun and the songs really suited him.
Katie Stevens came out rocking these knee high boots and started off her set with “Here We Go Again” by Demi Lovato. I did not like her at all on Idol and was very upset when she stayed instead of Lily Scott. I just thought she was very pagenty and robotic, always trying too hard. However, I really liked her alot tonight and didn’t see any of that in her performance at all! Then she gave a speech on how if any of us had a dream, we should follow it and dedicated the next song, “Fighter” to another Katie Stevens family. This is one of my favorite Christina Aguilera song and she definitely did it justice.The girl has got some pipes! She brought lots of spunk and attitude to the stage and got the crowd to be louder. The words popping on the screen were cute too.
Tim Urban was next and there goes the teenage screams! Haha, I guess Texas is glad to have their home state boy back :) I have to admit, I thought Tim was a total joke on the show but he definitely proved me wrong today! He sounded great on “Better Days” and I was surprised at how good he was. He looked very comortable on stage and told us how happy he was to be back home again, which brought a fresh wave of screams. He told us we might know the next song, which was “Viva La Vida” and asked us to sing along. More people standing up now, including me. Again, I thought he sounded great on this too. Maybe my expectations just weren’t very high for him, but I was really impressed by how good he sounded live. Oh, and did Tim grow a beard? Lol!
Next was Siobhan Magnus who had a very cool introduction I thought. Very Tim Burton-ish. Liked her pink tutu outfit too. Haha. She’s definitely a very interesting girl! Well Siobhan started off her set with a haunting version of “Paint It Black” and the crowd loved it! Really, this was awesome. Definitely my favorite from her set. The audience all stood up and clapped for her after that craaazy scream she did. How the heck do you hold a note that long anyway?! “Spiderwebs” was just alright for me. She did a good job, but nothing spectacular, especially after her phenomenal first song. Same goes for “Stockholm Syndrome”. It was pretty hardcore though, I gotta admit. Not your typical Idol concert song. She seemed like she was having alot of fun head-banging and stuff. I didn’t understand a word she was singing, but it sounded good! I think I would’ve enjoyed her set alot better if I knew the songs she was singing. (I had to look on MJ’s for all the song titles I didn’t know)
Well up next was Mr. Aaron Kelly, and after reading all the concert reviews, I was really looking forward to seeing him sing! He started off with one of my favorite songs “Somebody Like You”. It was fun, he was working that stage, and the crowd was on their feet singing along! There was a very sweet moment when the guy sitting next to me turns to his wife and sings “You gotta love somebody, love somebody like you” then kisses her. It was such an “awww” moment. “Walking On Memphis” was good, but probably my least favorite from his set. He ended strong with a version of “Fast Cars and Freedom” where he really got his groove on. I thought Aaron was very smart with his set. He picked songs that were up-tempo and that a lot of people would know. He’s got a great voice and I can definitely hear that country twang.
“The Climb” was good. Their voices blended well together. It’s a very inspirational song that fits all of them I think. Kinda cool for Aaron since he auditioned with this song, huh?
Intermission, me and Kim went and bought more overpriced bottle of waters and then went and asked a staff how to get to where the Idols were signing after the show.
Lots of people not back yet when Big Mike came on stage. He started with a moving version of “Woman’s Work” that recieved lots of applause from the audience. Took off his jacket and put on a hat for “Ready For Love” It was very beautiful, but I could see how some people would think his set was boring. He’s got a nice voice though. Lots of falsetto on “My Love”! That was probably my favorite from his set. I thought it was alot of fun, especially the rapping part.
Texas’ very own Casey James came out rockin’ his electric guitar on “I Got Mine” and the crowd was lovin’ him! Remember the couple from earlier? Well, the lady was definitely a cougar for Casey James ;) That guitar duel he did was really awesome too! The guy can seriously play. I think pretty much everyone stood up for his first song and gave him a standing ovation. Afterwards, he told us how great it was to be back in Texas and said his mom was in the audience tonight! The crowd took their seat again for his second song, an acoustic version of “Don’t”, one of my favorite performances of his on Idol. His voice sounds a lot stronger live! He didn’t look stiff and uncomfortable like he did on Idol either. Good for him.
Big Mike came back out for their duet of “Have You Ever Really Loved A Woman” and I gotta say, I really really liked this. It has a special meaning to me, because my Dad sang this song to my Mom to get her to go on a date with him. They sounded SO good, and I could really feel the emotion, especially when Big Mike sang “When you can see your unborn children in her eyes”. Casey closed off his set with a fun version of the Rolling Stones “It’s All Over Now”. Overall, I liked him so much more than I did on Idol. He picked better songs too.
Crystal Bowersox was up next and had the crowd standing and singing along to “What’s Up”. This was FANTASTIC. Definitely my favorite from her set. She had fun and so did we. After the song, someone came out and gave her a whole jug of water. LOL. She says everything’s bigger in Texas, but that she liked it. She was very relaxed on stage, talking to us like we were a bunch of old friends. “Come To My Window” was good, but I just don’t really like this song much. Getting to see her play her harmonica was cool though :) You know how some people say she looked uncomfortable without her guitar on “Up To The Mountain”? Well I didn’t get that at all! It was like she was walking around the stage, telling us a story. She sounded the best here. Her voice was just effortless. Closing off her set was a song right in her element, “Piece of My Heart”. Loved the sunflowers on the screen and I thought Crystal was awesome.
Finally, the person that I’ve been waiting to see all these months, Lee DeWyze! When his name popped up on screen, the crowd literally exploded. Everyone stood up and cheered for our American Idol! You don’t know how special of a moment this was for me. Getting to see him, hear him sing live was just incredible. “Beautiful Day” was great, loved how he changed it up. I know he does this at every city, but I still thought it was cool when he said “See Texas right in front of you”. Haha. “Rocket Man” fit this size venue perfectly and the old couple sitting next to Kim had their arms around each other singing along. Next was “Hallelujah” and it was definitely a crowd favorite. Everybody stood up and swayed their arms. I truly felt like I was at a real rock concert. The rasp and edge he brought to this was awesome. Lee was smiling through the whole thing and taking it all in. “Treat Her Like A Lady” was next, and this was the song that made me a fan of his on Idol. The guy sitting next to me was standing up and screaming the lyrics. It was pretty funny. Actually, he stood up for Lee’s entire set. Always happy to see a guy Lee fan :) His wife just sat there the whole time though. Too soon I thought, his set ended with “Use Somebody”. Gah, this fit his voice perfectly! It just felt so right. Lee needs to go on a solo tour ASAP. He sounds amazing live, really. Didn’t hear any out of tune notes, but then again, I was so into it I can’t even remember what he said. I’m pretty sure in between songs he said he loved Texas and that we can really party or something.
Right after Lee’s set we seriously ran out to the barricades. There wasn’t many people out there yet, so we got a good spot right in front. After that, we waited. The group song sounded great, by the way, at least from what I could hear from outside. Me and Kim met these two sisters who drove here from Louisiana. One was a Casey fan and the other a Lee fan. They were there since noon and got to meet most of the Idols but the other sister still needed to get a picture with Casey. It was already 11:15, super humid outside, some jerk was smoking right behind me even though a lot of people asked him to do it somewhere else, and the Idols still weren’t out. Apparently they were taking a shower or something, who knows.
We were just about to give up and go home when people started screaming and Aaron walked out! Lee came out right after but started at the other side of the barricades. Aaron came to our side first and signed my program. He was so tiny in person! I told him he sounded amazing and he smiled and thanked me. Then I asked him for a picture and he said “Of course” then hugged me. He was such a sweetie, taking his time with everyone. The other Idols slowly started coming out. Most of the girls went to the other side while the guys came on our side. Big Mike came to us next, and let me tell ya, the guy is huge! The staffs kept telling everyone to back off a little so Mike sang “Back offff a littttlleee” in this really funny voice. It was cute. He signed my program and hugged me for our picture too. Next came Tim Urban and I think he shaved between the show and now, lol. His little goatee was gone. I’m not exactly all fan girly about Tim, but he really is a VERY good looking dude. He signed my program and I got a picture with him where I looked like crap and he looked amazing. Haha. My friends back home had dared me to ask him to homecoming, so that was exactly what I did! I guess it took him a while to process it because he just stared at me, but then he laughed and was like, “Yes, yes, YES!” He then wrote yes! on my program next to his signature. I was a happy girl :)
Just when I thought I was on a roll, Lee came and he was MAJORLY rushed. The security guard, Ray was it? was literally breathing down his neck telling him to hurry up. All he could do was quickly sign stuff and apologize for not being able to take pictures. I could tell he was trying his best to interact with the fans, so even though I was kinda bummed, I was happy I got to touch his arm and get an autograph. Haha. I was a little startstruck when he was right in front of me so no good snap shots. It was just so surreal. He’s got some really blue eyes! He gave a fan his marker and then had to leave. Oh, some girl grabbed his face too. It was crazy! Then came Andrew. He signed my program then leaned in for a picture. Unfortunately, I was a nervous wreck after Lee so I had it on video tape, but he stood there patiently waiting for me until I got my picture. What a nice guy :)
Didi came next and told us she only had 20 minutes so no pictures. I told her she was one of my favorites and she said “Thanks. You’re too sweet”. She said she wore her cowboy boots for Texas and that we were the first state where almost everyone came on time. Did I tell you she’s gorgeous? Cause she really is! Then Casey and his mom came out. Man he is tall! I had to stand up on my tippy toe for the picture. He signed my program and I got to talk to his mom for a bit. She was a sweetie & was so proud of him. Crystal came next and Ray was there too. No pictures with her either so I said “Crystal smile!” when she was signing my program and she looked up for the snapshot. She’s so pretty in person! I love her dreads. I told her she was amazing and she said “Thanks!” Then Siobhan and Katie came at about the same time. They’re both SO tiny! Katie was about my size and I’m only 5’2. I got signatures from both of them as well as snapshots. It was funny watching Katie telling Ray to stop because he was counting down “20, 19, 18..”. Overall they were all so sweet and the concert was very fun. All of them sound so much better live so everyone should get a ticket and go to the concert! Who cares about all the negativity about this season and the reviews, just GO :)
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