July 11 Albany, NY Idols Show

UPDATE:  Gray Charles was kind enough to write up a recap of the Albany show and forward a copy to me.  Thank you Gray!

It’s very hot, we park one block from the Pepsi Arena now we need a drink. Let’s go to the Crowne Plaza, after all that’s where the Idols are staying. Hey, it’s 6:45 – where are all the stars? We down our drinks and walk over to the arena. On the way I stop into the Starbucks that is in THE SAME BUILDING AS THE HOTEL WHERE ALL THE IDOLS ARE STAYING and introduce myself to the barista – “Hello, I’m Katharine McPhee” i say – “Yes, ” she says, “I recognize you from earlier today.”

Pick up the seats at “Will Call” it says “Guest of Taylor” on the envelope but the ticket taker snatches the potential souvenir out of my hand before I can respond. Everyone wants to know whose AI trinkets are being sold, all I can say is Fried Dough! They are selling Fried Dough!

We say hi to one of the Jumbotron operators who I met previously. A Pop-Tart bumps me – on purpose! I push it and get mint chocolate all over my hands. We go to our seats.

Now, if you are expecting a blow by blow recap of every nuance of everyone’s performance you’re reading the wrong thing. I’m a bit burnt out on all this so here goes a slightly different take on it.

Mandisa – Sing, don’t talk. Girl can sing –  not so much with the talking.

Ace – Don’t hate him because he’s beautiful. Generally, I liked Ace more than I thought I would. Does he mean to push his sweaty hair back behind his ears during the close up? Because it works – go Ace.

Lisa – Really cute, thanks for being here.

Paris – Ok, so Paris, hmm. I’m still parsing this.

Bucky – Um, yea. He looks like a stick figure up there. He had a good time but whatever charms he might have are invisible to me. But screw it, good for Bucky, have fun.

Kellie – Al – bany as opposed to ALL – bany. Why they dress her like a whore is kind of beyond me.

Intermission – Let’s  have a big round of applause for ELLIOTT’S MOM as she goes to the ladies room? Oh, if you’re a woman, please don’t need to go – your estimated wait time is 67 minutes.

DAUGHTRY – Whole Lotta Back Door Man – I think the volume of the sound system went up to 11. I’m glad they left the Back Door Man reference in because it so works in the context of the sexification of the pop tart songs. (hey, go figure that out yourself). I wish DAUGHTRY would seem happy, maybe I would be too. I wanted to be. Great performance as always but not happy.

Elliott + DAUGHTRY – nice

Elliott – Damned likeable. Little finger waves. Great as always. I like to keep Elliott simple, just enjoy him.

KatMontageBoySongGirlSong – Wake me when it’s over.

Taylor – What can I add? Chuck Berry duckwalk. Harmonica feedback on TITTS was crazy. Vocally, Physically, Charismatically he knocks it out of the park. I’m sorry, he just does. I’m not sorry actually. Lot’s of JB vocal inflections this time on the breaks. Wild harmonica spin moves. Just go.

We are the champions who live in america – yadda yadda but, ok whatever.

Everyone loves Albany, they said so! They asked us how we were doing many many times.

After Show Meet & Greet – I gotta say, this was weird. Who are these people who have passes and where did they get them? I have no idea. Why am I in the same group? Off in a corner there is a Pepsi refrigerator with two half empty gallons of milk – why? The Idols are short mostly. Has anyone figured out the average height of the Idols vs. a comparable sample from the US population? Because I think they are short. Bucky and Taylor help bring the average up. Ace seems about right – everyone else is short. Paris has pajamas on. Elliott signs an autograph for MJ. Chris and Taylor provide the most autographs for me to distribute to the range of babysitters that allow me to do things like this. Taylor, in his typical subversive mode, wears a Coca Cola shirt (AI schwag obviously) inside the PEPSI ARENA! Where are his handlers? Where are the PR guys? Bloody hell what does this mean? I give him a copy of Richard and Linda Thompson’s seminal recording “Shoot Out The Lights” and a CD full of MP3’s.

Retrospective – The show was fun, my preferences are with Taylor obviously but there was something for everyone. Boys trumped Girls, no big surprise. The show (barring Taylor’s performance) was a bit anti-climactic for me. Why? Well the night before I had the Confetti Corn Fritters and the Greek Ravioli. Taylor had the New York Strip Steak special with the House Salad. We talked for five hours – now that, my friends, was cool.  One day I hope to share some of it. I will say that Taylor is a much sweeter guy than anyone in his position needs to be and you know what? It’s all about the music.

– Gray

Anybody with recaps or pictures please post them in the comments section.  I may ask permission to post them on the blog.  Thanks.

Better late than never!  I just posted some photos from Sunday’s Hartford CT show, courtesy of Lisa.  I’m hoping for a re-cap in a bit…

Daisy’s Recap:

Just got back from the Albany show, and it was great! Claudette was there and everyone was taking pictures, she still looked like she was recovering from her surgery, but looked really happy to see Elliott tonight, People were all over her, taking pictures, etc, I love that woman! Friend Billy who was with me tonight graciously offered to go with me tonight, he’s just so so on American idol in general.

My thoughts on tonight:

Lisa was better than I thought, quite pretty, sings really well, loved her–Mandisa as well, that girl can belt!
Ace is not my cup of tea, but was well received, especially by the young preteen girls, some of this gestures strange to me, but what the heck. did have a cute outfit on, though.

Paris, Something is missing from her set, just isn’t clicking tonight, voice is not as strong , not sure what is going on, Does have good stage presence and can dance well.

Bucky- Very cute, but give this boy a country song that he can sink his teeth in. adorable on stage, am a fan and wish him the best! Crowd did like him, and that cowboy hat is a great touch.

Kellie- liked her songs, really sweet with crowd, mentioned the NY hospitality (she and Buck needing a place to eat, and found some help). Kellie looked really pretty on stage too,

Second act:

Chris- big crowd pleaser, songs familiar to the crowd, vocally he needs to watch it as he is screaming a bit. otherwise, really enjoyed his set, and crowd liked his style.  The duet with Elliott is fantastic, by far the best vocal duet of the night and best song overall in the whole show Their voices are great together, and this is a great rendition of a song that is current. Boys made mention of the Nickelback concert last night.

Elliott- looked adorable and so comfortable tonight, really working the audience which was cool, the ladies loved his blowing kisses, and sweet gestures especially during the Luther Song, which is PERFECT for him, Loved his rendition of the song.  Trouble and Moody’s mood also really really good, and he shows by far that he is the best vocalist in this group. Wearing jeans, a bit baggy which is my preference, so I was very happy! had really cute tight t shirt (Superman) on in last song. E man needs to record ASAP.

Taylor – Lots of energy tonight, looked nice in a purple shirt, vocals up and down with his songs, tends to move the mike away? not sure why.  Liked the harmonica and guitar, admit felt just a little bored with Beatles song, didn’t like the arrangement (sorry soul patrol).  Not so much dancing crazy until the end, which was a- okay with me, would rather hear the song. Crowd liked the dancing moves.

Anyway, me and Billy enjoyed the show althought I did need to buy him dinner!