Why Professional Singers Should Be Allowed on ‹American Idol
Fans are up in arms this morning about the overrepresentation of professional singers on the new season of American Idol. Rickey.org notes that Kristy Lee Cook (left), the winsome kickboxer (and cage fighter!), who purportedly sold her favorite horse to pay her way to the Philadelphia auditions, was at one time under contract to Arista Nashville and Britney Spears production company (evidently some would still consider this an advantage). Additionally, Brooke White ‘ the 24-year-old nanny who claimed she’d never seen an R-rated movie (and was impressively able to make a Corinne Bailey Rae song sound even more boring) ‘ has 13, 000 MySpace friends and pictures of herself sharing a stage with Kiefer Sutherland. Rickey says he’s “too lazy to do the research” but speculates that she, like Cook, has probably released an album too. We’re also too lazy to do the research, but from the looks of White’s MySpace page, he’s probably right.
‹Idol auditioners get wacky in Dallas
In the search of a viable …American Idol, the show turned its eyes to Dallas. The city produced Kelly Clarkson in its first season, which must seem like a long time ago ‘ especially to the people whove had to market Taylor Hicks as bona fide superstar.
The logical scenario would have been for the producers to find little Clarkson clones, all about the wholesome goodness, in order to remind viewers that the theoretical point is to locate future pop superstars.
While Texas did contribute its share of those, the list of the 24 advancing from the city includes:
Reality Check: Texas Auditions Keep Eccentric Quotient Low
‘ve got to hand it to “Idol.” On its second night ‘ that is, the prime time for a freak brigade of maximum proportions ‘ the show played it pretty tame. Sure, the Texas auditions showcased some of the less-than-vocally blessed, but the spotlight was more on the subtly irregular rather than the downright demented.
There was a roller coaster enthusiast, a hippie brother and sister who performed an Italian opera duet, a guy that brought along seven years worth of fingernails he’d peeled off, and a girl so mellow she appeared to be comatose even when she was singing and talking.
‘American Idol’ judges agree: Dallas has charm
By now we know the rules: When a TV show films in Dallas, it must show scenes of Southfork.
That, and longhorn cattle, the state flag and more cattle, all of which should be set to banjo picking. The bases were covered on Wednesday night’s American Idol, which highlighted last August’s auditions at Texas Stadium. But for fun, the producers also gave us shots of freeway and the Alamo.
But none of that is as important as the real issue: How did we come across as a people? The overwhelming verdict: Nice. Very nice.
”American Idol”: Happy Texas
Ladies and gentlemen, step right up and check out the all new version of American Idol! Yes, folks, the nation’s No. 1 television show has been magically transformed into a kinder, gentler program, a place where Simon Cowell doles out hugs, where Randy Jackson participates in gleeful sing-alongs, and where young hopefuls need not be pitch-perfect to score trips to Hollywood. That’s right, all you need is a compelling angle ‘ a brush with death! a battle with addiction! an actual piece of hay between your teeth! ‘ and you’ll be good as gold(en ticket) with the judges!
American Idol: Dallas Auditions
I’m thrilled that we’re getting to see more of the good auditions this year than we have in recent years but, and I’m so ashamed to admit this, it actually made the show a bit boring. Or maybe there just weren’t as many crazies in Texas as there are everywhere else. I don’t know. There were some good singers, even a few really good singers, but I found myself just kind of like “Eh, I wonder what else is on” during long portions of it. In fact at one point I wrote a letter.
Oh, the ‘American Idol’ humanity
And so, again, out of many (very, very many) will come one. In these days of modern entertainment, with all our special effects and fancy editing tricks, somehow we have lost something that throughout history has formed the basis of drama: the sight of a cast of thousands amassed for combat.
Yes, we have our “Lords of the Rings” and our “300s, ” with their sweeping pans over millions of little cartoon orcs and swordsmen, but somehow even the best graphic effects the entertainment industrial complex has to offer leave one cold; nothing stirs the heart like a DeMille pan over scores of real human extras packing their huts, each one in his own way dreaming of escaping to a better life as he races to flee pharaoh. No amount of modern alchemy can re-create the one plaintive voice amid the crowd crying at his obstinate mule, “Four hundred years of bondage, and today he won’t move!”
Recap: ‘American Idol’ Dallas Auditions
If Tuesday night’s premiere from Philadelphia left me feeling optimistic about this season’s American Idol talent, it was cruel of Dallas to crush my spirit and even crueler of the show’s producers to think that we needed two hours of Texas strangeness.
How strange was Wednesday (Jan 16) night’s audition special from Dallas?
In the course of 45 minutes, the judges gave Golden Tickets to a Mississippi boy who collected his trimmed fingernails in a baggie, a mediocre Janis Joplin impersonator with half-a-face and a dorky college student with presidential aspirations. All three singers got through on 2-to-1 votes, but it was the sort of episode where very few decisions were unanimous.
American Idol: We Are Brothers Forever!
t’s night two of auditions and American Idol is in Texas, where everything is bigger ‘ including the crazies. We’re all for not messing with the lone star state, but after Wednesday’s episode we must beg of it: stop messing with us!
Included in this plea: Paul Stafford, the park attendant whose version of Elliott Yamin’s “Wait For You” elicited clown music from producers, Gregory and Mia Tobias, who, without even knowing their background at all, are the best argument against homeschooling I’ve ever seen, and Bruce Dickson, the 19-year-old who is saving himself entirely for marriage, right down to his first kiss.
But forget these near-nutcases. Let’s get to the real kooks: Douglas Davidson and Renaldo Lapuz.
A low note for ‘American Idol’ ratings
Even so, a sense of diminishment hung in the air. For the first time since it became a winter TV staple back in 2003, “Idol’s” season premiere did not improve on the previous year’s debut. Not only was “Idol” down 11% compared with last season’s all-time high for a season opener (37.4 million), it actually delivered the lowest premiere figures, among both total viewers and the crucial demographic of adults ages 18 to 49, since 2004.
‘Idol’ Takes a Ratings Dip — Albeit a Slight One — in Season Opener
Chris Daughtry looks like some kind of “American Idol” soothsayer for having forecast, right before Tuesday’s seventh-season debut, that the show was in a state of decline, only to have the debut numbers come out yesterday showing its ratings had . . . declined!
Also looking crazy-prescient is the former head of NBC Entertainment, who, a year ago, told trade publication TV Week: “Nothing burns that bright forever. Some day it will be uncool to watch ‘American Idol.’ ”
American Idol’s Omaha Audition Show To Air Jan. 29
Omaha (KPTM) – If you auditioned for American Idol here in Omaha, your moment on the small screen is coming soon to FOX. The Omaha auditions for American Idol, which were conducted at the Qwest Center over the summer will air on January 29th on KPTM FOX 42.
Idol Starts Big, Not Bigger
When we tell you American Idol’s premiere was smaller than last year’s, just know we mean smaller as in slightly less gigantic.
Tuesday’s two-hour, seventh-season opener, spotlighting the competition’s Philadelphia auditions, averaged 33.2 million viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research estimates, more than last weekend’s football games, more than any other entertainment show this season, but, yes, less than the sixth-season opener.
More precisely, the show was lighter by more than 4 million viewers, a loss of about 10 percent.
Singer Anwar Robinson: From Idol to Rent
Anwar Robinson singing career started with a dare. It was August 2004 when the New Jersey music teacher offered to drive some friends to the American Idol auditions in Washington D.C. That would be fine, they said, as long as Robinson agreed to audition with them.
As it turned out, Robinson not only survived the audition, but managed to make it to the finals three years ago in season four. And he did so without earning the wrath of the show chief curmudgeon, Simon Cowell.
‘American Idol’ Premiere: Philly Fans Audition, Stalk Paula, Impersonate Borat
Practice your seal clap and warm up your dialing fingers, because “American Idol” is back! As the seemingly never-ending audition episodes continue to roll out, we’ll help you make sense of all the Coca-Cola-sponsored insanity, breaking down the noteworthy wannabes (both good and bad) into handy categories.
The first Season Seven stop was the City of Brotherly Love. (Did Seacrest make that call?) Let’s take a look at how the Philadelphia folks fared.
Chris Daughtry Feels the Heat for Comments on “American Idol” “Decline”
As you may have read Monday, Chris Daughtry described American Idol as in a state of …decline on RollingStone.com. Since then, a producer for the show told Rolling Stone Daughtry called to apologize and said that he was …misquoted or taken out of context. We think Daughtry is a great guy and understand that he put himself in a tough position, but we also need to set the record straight. Here the interview transcript and audio from our phone conversation.
‘American Idol’ Treacles In
First night of the traditional lousy-auditions phase of “Idol” — three glorious weeks on the road meeting delusional pop-star wannabes — takes us to Philadelphia.
But why are the judges being so well-behaved?
Aspiring veterinarian Alexis Cohen comes in with her face covered in glitter and channels Grace Slick, after which judge Simon Cowell spits out, “You’ll either end up as a country vet and be quite normal or wind up in a band. I don’t think this competition is right for you.”
You Decode: Viewers Size Up The New ‹American Idol
s …American Idol, television top-rated show, still as strong as ever?
Last spring season of the Fox reality juggernaut marked the first time that overall viewership declined from the previous year, Edward Wyatt noted in Monday New York Times. But the singing competition still draws roughly 30 million viewers, 50 percent more than any other broadcast series.
The producers of …Idol said they have made adjustments since last spring, focusing more on the contestants backgrounds and downplaying guest appearances and celebrity mentors. As the seventh season debuted on Tuesday, we identified …Idol fans across the country using the social messaging site Twitter and asked a sampling to size up the new season:
‘American Idol’ Executive Producer’s Secret Flop: ‘The Apple’
We all have a ghost from our past we wish we could avoid, a skeleton in our closet or a trauma we don’t wish to relive. “American Idol” executive producer Nigel Lythgoe is no exception.
“I’m not going to talk about ‘The Apple, ‘ ” he said, perched behind his desk.
The apparent sore subject is Lythgoe’s sole cinematic choreography credit (mysteriously absent from his Internet Movie Database filmography). It also happens to be considered one of the worst films of its era.
Thousands Sang the Jingle … Now, Who Will be the Top Dogs?
Thousands of eager songsters put their own flavor on three iconic jingles in Oscar Mayer’s cross country talent search, but only eight soloists and four groups hot dogged their way into the finals. Now, Oscar Mayer is asking America to cast its vote, “American Idol” style, to help decide who will get a taste of fame with the opportunity to participate in the taping of an Oscar Mayer commercial.
America, It’s Your Turn
Now through February 15, 12 finalist jingle renditions will be posted online at http://www.singthejingle.com for fans to vote for their favorites on the web site or via text message with service from AT&T. The famed WIENERMOBILE vehicles also will visit the finalists’ hometowns to congratulate each singer throughout the voting phase. The 12 finalists are comprised of the top four scoring entries from each of the following categories: English Jingle Solo; Spanish Jingle Solo, and Group (English or Spanish Jingle).
American Idol: Ones to Watch
“American Idol” finally returned last night, so today’s water cooler chat will focus on the most painful moments from last night’s show: the glitter-doused wanna-be Janis Joplin and the self-righteous “Star Trek” fanatic.
Still, some of the impressive performances warrant rehashing, too. Here are four contestants you’ll be seeing again in Hollywood; their performances last night won them considerable Web buzz this morning.
Grand Blanc’s ‘Idol’ was shy girl
As Jeff Tice watched Beth Stalker’s televised audition for “American Idol” Tuesday he reflected on the years she was in the theater at Clarkston High School.
She arrived as a shy, quiet and sensitive teenager — a girl, Tice says, who was unsure of herself.
But by the time graduation rolled around, that all changed. Stalker was confident and on stage starring as the lead in “Guys and Dolls.”
“Not only does she have a beautiful voice but a tremendous presence on stage, ” said Tice, director of theater at Clarkston High School. “If she continues on ‘American Idol, ‘ you’ll see her kind personality, and that’s who she is.”
Selma, Ore.’s “American Idol”: Is she the next Britney?
OK, so I watched the premiere of the seventh season of that sucky show.
The tryouts in Philly were the typical crap you’ve come to expect from this show, but there was one stand-out who piqued my interest.
It was Kristy Lee Cook from Selma, Oregon .
Although her name sounds “famous” from the get-go, I had no friggin’ clue where Selma is until going here. Anybody seen Kristy perform around those parts? Anybody know anything about this blonde bombshell?
Clay Aiken is Birdway bound
Pop singer, how-to author and controversial Kelly Ripa mouth muffler, Clay Aiken now goes by another title – Broadway hatchling. He debuts Friday night as Sir Robin in “Monty Python’s Spamalot.”
Then again, this picture of Aiken in costume as the Round Table Knight in the merry musical spoof of the Aurthurian legend is bound to bring a more dubious nickname … Chicken choker. David Hyde Pierce, who originated the role, was snapped simply holding a feathered bird.
Photo Preview: Clay Aiken in ‘Spamalot’
Recording-artist and “American Idol” runner-up, Clay Aiken will make his Broadway debut as Sir Robin in Monty Python’s Spamalot on Friday, January 18 through May 4, 2008 at the Shubert Theatre (225 West 44th Street).
Tickets are available online now at www.telecharge.com or by calling 212-239-6200 or 800-432-7250.
The pop idol makes a surprising Broadway debut.
Wholesome, God-fearing, ambiguously effete Clay Aiken unintentionally pushes more buttons than most so-called subversive artists. Just defending the 29-year-old North Carolinian, American Idol and pop phenom is likely to cause an uproar. Ask Rosie ODonnell: Last year, she accused Kelly Ripa of being homophobic after Ripa derided Aiken for placing his hand on her mouth. (…I dont know where that hand been, honey, Ripa fired at him.)
Idol time Rising performer to sing at banquet
When Ruben Studdard first learned about the auditions for the 2003 season of “American Idol” in Nashville, Tenn., he did not want to go.
“Somebody talked me into it ‘ one of my friends that was going to audition. I decided to go with her, and the rest is history, ” said Studdard in a phone interview from his native Birmingham, Ala.
“The rest” for Studdard meant national exposure on the reality television show, the title as the second American Idol and a recording contract with J Records. Four years and three albums later, Studdard, 29, remains grateful for the opportunity to do what he had been doing since age 3 ‘ making music.
The singer will show some of his appreciation for the people who helped him become the man he is today when he comes to Rocky Mount next week.
Paula’s Super Show — Straight Up Catastrophe?
Hyper-sentimental Paula Abdul is prepping for her big comeback gig at the Super Bowl — but it looks like the whole thing could be a golden ticket to her biggest and most public meltdown yet!
A source close to Paula and familiar with preparations tells TMZ that it’s going to be “a massive disaster” — exact words — and that the whole thing is a “bad, bad idea.” The “AI” judgewreck has already lost her voice in rehearsals for the show, and we’re told she isn’t going to sing live in Arizona (duh). Her vocals, therefore, will be “enhanced.” Pitchy keen!