When Randy Jackson announced he’d be displaying a more “assertive” personality, I didn’t think it would translate to “I want to be the new Simon.” I have mixed feelings about this. Somebody has got to play the straight shooter, but I’m not sure it should be Randy. I think Jennifer Lopez would be much better (she’s a tough street chick underneath all that glam) and more entertaining in the “honest” role. Bbut it’s risky for a female entertainer–who is hoping people will still buy her records and see her movies–to play the heavy.
Tonight’s show was another entertaining outing. Well, except that dumb apology at the top of the show. Nigel Lythgoe must have gotten a lot of complaints about it afterward, because he tweeted, “Wow, there is a huge lack of humor out there!! Hey you guys, don’t take things too seriously, especially my shows. Smile or “Go **** a duck””
The problem wasn’t the joke, but the misleading and manipulative buildup from Ryan Seacrest this afternoon. Really, it should have been at least a funnier joke after all that. Some of that hype is going to backfire on you Nigel. Better watch it.
Tonight’s hopefuls: My favorites were Jacqueline Dunford and Casey Abrams. How about you?
At the top of tonight’s hour-long Austin, TX audition episode, the producers are supposedly “apologizing” for Steven Tyler’s “outrageous” behavior. We’ll see how that plays out.
Joe’s Place has a list of Austin hopefuls to watch out for tonight. Check it here.
Stick around as I live blog tonight’s exciting episode! Ha.
Live blog after the jump…
So that apology was a joke, very quick and kind of stupid. Next. – VIDEO
Marc Anthony drops by to say hi to wife Jennifer Lopez.
Cory Levoy – 21 – Longview, TX – “I Can’t Make You Love Me” – Sis and bro didn’t meet each other until they were teens due to “parental issues” When they met, they clicked instantly. Uh oh. Sister is there to support her “best friend” bro. The panel wants sis to help judge the audition. He’s got a sweet country-tinged tenor. Very nice tone. Sis seems mesmerized! Steven claps. Sis calls it “amazing.” Randy was “surprised and impressed.” Jennifer says he’s “gifted…really really nice.” It’s 4 yeses for Cory. Uhm. He’s been told his whole life that he has a Jlo booty. – Part 1 – Part 2
Hollie Cavanagh – 17 – McKinney, TX – “At Last” by Etta James – She’s got a very strong blusey voice. The judges aren’t impressed. Randy says she “changed keys 5 times.” Steven says she was “all over the place.” Hm. She really didn’t sound that bad. This is soooo set up. – VIDEO
She sings again…after the break.
Holly sings “The Climb” and sounds exactly the same. Actually, she’s crying so she sounds worse. But the judges say she sounds “so much better” and put her through to Hollywood. – VIDEO
A parade of nos is next.
Rodolfo Ochoa – 17 – Los Fresnos, TX – “The Circle of Life” – Love me some off-key screeching! Not. “This is not good, ” says Randy, “The singing was honestly terrible. Jennifer explains patiently that he’s got a vibratro, but he’s off-key. I liked Randy’s critique better. – VIDEO
One dude assures the panel that he’s “100% heterosexual.” WTF?
John Wayne Schulz – 23 – Kansas City, TX – “Believe” by Brooks and Dunn – We got ourselves a cowboy here! He works on a cattle ranch. Oh here it come…his mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. She asked him to try out for Idol. So, he’s doing this for MOM. He’s got a nice, full baritone, if a little generic. Jennifer believes he believes! “Beautiful, ” says Steven. “I get it says Randy. The panel brings in the parents to tell them the good news in person. Mom is so happy she starts crying. Randy says, “We felt his whole spirit, his passion.” Hello Paula! Ryan’s got “belt buckle damage.” Alrighty then. – Part 1 – Part 2
Austin Day 2 after the Break
Courtney Penry – 17 – Missouri City, TX – “Stay” by Sugarland, Ryan Seacrest is the sexiest man alive. She’s been dreaming about this day forever. She’s crying. She’s a great actress.. Hilarious. Ryan Seacrest will be mine some day, she says. Lulz. She does a chicken impression. She may be psychotic, idk. Steven thinks she has star quality. Jennifer isn’t as convinced. Randy says she’s got a pretty good voice. Randy says no, Jennifer and Steven say yes. She does her chicken dance to celebrate! – Part 1 – Part 2
Shauntel Campos – 24 – Albuquerque, NM, Alex Carr – 26 – Fayetteville, AR, Caleb Johnson – 19 – Asheville, NC, all in quick succession. All yeses from the judges. Aw. It’s Lee Dewyze’s version of “Beautiful Day.” More contestants go through. – VIDEO
Jacqueline Dunford – 21 – Scottsdale, AZ and Nick Fink – 19 – Scottdale, AZ – Another couple, but these two are still together. The want to be American Idol’s 1st “Power couple”. Jacqueline sings a powerful version of “Mercy”. The judges are smiling. Nick sings “Sunday Morning”. He’s pretty good too. Jennifer thought they both had “interesting takes” on the songs. Steven thought they were awesome. Randy calls them a “breath of fresh air.” It’s yeses all around. It’s Jennifer’s favorite couple on Idol in 10 years. Huh? – Part 1 – Part 2
Janelle Arthur – 20 – Oliver Springs, TX – She’s a down home country girl, and she assures us SHE’S GOT ALL HER TEETH. She’s very pretty with a sweet, pretty, but generic voice. But she hits some nice high notes. “Great. So good, ” says Steven. YES say Jennifer and Randy. – VIDEO
What the hell is that? An asshat in an armadillo costume starts off a series of bad auditions. Randy gets the opportunity to show off his newly “assertive” self in this montage. The Dawg is no Simon Cowell! The armadillo is a girl! Well, that kinda ruined it.
Casey Abrams – 19 – Idyllwild, CA – “I Don’t Need No Doctor” by Ray Charles – He plays the “melodica” and is a dead ringer for Seth Rogan but he “doesn’t see it.” He’s got a very soulful bluesy voice, kind of a younger, funnier Taylor Hicks. The judges scream YES in unison. – VIDEO
50 contestants made it to Hollywood from Austin, TX.