Tonight’s show begins with the obligatory Mimi Vice-like opening. Will anyone under 40 even get it? Oh wait, I almost forgot about that crappy movie. Maybe 5 people saw it?
Ryan explains that it’s the first time Idol has been back in Miami since Season 2. Ten-thousand auditioners show up in the Florida heat.
The girl who was supposed to be good was not, the girls who were supposed to be a joke, were fabulous… In fact, the girls appear to rule, generally. And there’s lots of kissing and hugging tonight. Miami is a love-fest.
And Simon calls Paula a slut, and asks if someone has spiked her drink! Good times.
Shannon McGough 18, Okeechobee, FL – “Cry Baby” by Janis Joplin – Shannon works for her parents in their meat market. Basically, she’s a butcher. But they keep saying that she “handles meat.” Hmm. Her parents have a billboard full of pictures in their store. According to them, she has won many contests! She can also burp really loudly. Such talent! She says, “I would definitely not be devastated by not working with bloody meat anymore.” Alrighty. So, all set for a talented singer, yes? She opens her mouth, and…Holy cow. That’s one ear piercing screech she’s got there. Yikes. Simon looks completely freaked out. Poor Shannon is completely floored when they criticize her. “This is crazy to me!” she declares, “I’ve never had anybody tell me that I sing bad before.” She asks to sing something else, and Simon responds, “Never, never.” She starts singing again anyway–Aretha Franklin. She’s actually got a good voice somewhere in there, she just doesn’t know how to use it. “Your mouth is doing weird, weird things, ” says Simon. Paula adds that she has, “melody problems.” Randy tells her she may be tone deaf. I feel bad for her. She’s just been broadsided by a giant truth truck. Her mom looks like SHE just had her dream busted. And, perhaps, therein lies the problem. Shannon says, “I think I’m done with American Idol.”
“Not far from Miami is Orlando, ” says Ryan, “The home of two of the biggest boy bands ever–Backstreet Boys and ‘Nsync.” Then Ryan introduces the next contestant as a “former boybander who has now turned to rock.” Ryan asks, “Can he turn this audition into a ticket to Hollywood?” Meet Robbie! Not only is he a former boybander, but he’s the ex-boyfriend of Britney Spears! That little factoid will surely enhance his rep. Heh.
Robbie Carrico 25, Melbourne, FL – And, despite the long hair and skull cap…he still sounds like a boybander. He’s still got the boybander moves, too. Simon says, “That was quite good.” Paula and Randy say yes. As he leaves the audition room with his golden ticket, his family showers him with silly string. Robbie gets a second chance!
Randy claims that the girls are representing, but the guys, “Not so much.”
Ghaleb Emachan 27, Miami, FL – “You Sang to Me” by Marc Anthony – He’s from…somewhere. I couldn’t make it out through his thick accent. Ghaleb, who looks kinda like a young Antonio Banderes plays “Gypsy” music. He’s like a Latin lounge lizard, all gooey and over-emotive. But, he’s got a nice smile. Simon pulls out an oldie but a goodie, “I would like you if I was drunk.” Paula thinks his accent is a problem but that he’s a good singer. Erm, not really. Paula tries to talk, but gets interrupted by Simon. Then she gets annoyed and is all “la la la la la” with her fingers in her ears. Randy ends the nonsense by saying yes. Paula walks up to Ghaleb, gives him a big hug and says, “Welcome to Hollywood.” He holds Paula in his arms, and promises to work on his accent. The music swells… Well, not really. Leaving the room, he begins a hugfest with everyone in sight. He even plants a big kiss on Ryan’s cheek. “Oh gosh!” exclaims Ryan. Meanwhile, Simon wants someone to check what’s in Pauler’s cup…
Corliss Smith and Brittany Wescott 20, Jacksonville, FL- Corliss and Brittany are two big ‘n sassy black girls. They claim to be best pals and separated at birth. They both love to sing! They flirt with everyone in sight. Brittany likes the skinny guys, and Corliss likes them a little chunky. Anyone who has watched American Idol for any length of time would assume we’re being set up for some top-notch suckage. Corliss, who appears to be about to slaughter, “Take 5” is…FABULOUS! Wow, this chick can sang. Brittany sings “My Guy” and although she isn’t as good as the awesome Corliss, she’s definitely Hollywood-worthy. After 3 yeses, there are hugs all around.
Suzanne Toon 21, Clearwater FL – “I Can’t Make You Love Me” by Bonnie Raitt – She went to a performing arts high school, but got pregnant when she was 18. She begins to cry as she describes her struggles as a single mom. She hasn’t sung since she was 18. Or, at least she claims. “I have a lot riding on today, ” She says. Suzanne sings with a rich, honeyed tone, even if her phrasing is a bit hesitant. Simon thinks she becomes more attractive when she sings. Paula thinks she’s sultry. Randy says seductive. It’s 3 yeses for the sexy Suzanne.
OMG!???!! It’s the Power of the Flower on my Tee Vee screen! Must… Look… Away… Oh noes! Arrrrgh.
Why…It’s Jasmine Trias! She’s platinum in the Philippines! Yes. You heard that right.
Also Filipino is…
Ramiele Malubay 19, Miramar, FL- “Natural Woman” by Aretha Franklin. Ramiele wants to be the first Asian American Idol. Jasmine Trias is her inspiration. Ramiele might want to re-think that. Paula tells her that she’s adorable. “Thank Yewww, ” says Ramiele, channeling Jazzy. Seriously, she has to not do that. Ramiele has a big, big voice. A little raspy and shouty on the top notes, but pretty good. Paula likes her a lot, but Simon thinks she’s like a “hotel singer” and not contemporary. Randy disagrees, he thinks she’s got a “big voice for a cute, smaller girl.” Which prompts Simon to ask Randy if he’d still put her through if she were tall. Randy thinks Simon is baked. Simon says no, but it doesn’t matter, because Randy and Paula put her through.
Syesha Mercado 20, Miami, FL – “Think” by Aretha Franklin – Syesha tells us that she’s very happy these days. Good things keep happening to her, because she attracts the positive. It’s a karma thing. She hasn’t always been happy. She introduces her Dad, who is fresh out of rehab, and hesitant to be on camera. But DAD, it’s her backstory! C’mon, play along! He does, finally. He tells her that he’s proud of her and that he loves her, and father and daughter have a big on-camera moment. She walks into the audition room with a lot of force. She has a big, giant voice to match. But, she’s loud, and screamy. “A bit over the top, ” says Simon, adding, “it was all a bit of an effort.” I agree. She needs to dial it back a notch or two. Simon says yes anyway, as does Randy and Paula who really like her. By the way, Syesha is no stranger to Tee Vee reality musical competitions. She was a contestant on “The One”, a show from a few years ago that hardly anybody watched…
The girls rule…
Nastashia Blach 29, Fort Collins, CO – “At Last” by Etta James – Randy says, “I like this girl, she is a kind of throw-back old school.” He says yes, so does Paula and Simon.
Ilsy Lorena Pinot 28, Miami, FL – “Unfaithful” by Rhianna – They like, she advances.
Suckage! Comments by Simon:
Ben Hausebach 26, Melbourne, FL – “Crocodile Rock” by Elton John – Ben serenades Paula in a tone-deaf monotone, “Can I stop this now?”
Carroy Bethea 27, Fort Myers, FL – “Chain of Fools” by Aretha Franklin – Carroy hits an ear-piercing high note, “A tiny, weeny bit over the top, that one, wasn’t it?”
Grant Rhea 24, Miami, FL – Melisma is NOT his friend, “I’m tempted to say, come back in a dress.” That’s an oldie but a goodie!
Fabienne Hyppolite 28, Hollywood, FL – “When I Fall in Love” – Bizarre accent and “unique” phrasing causes Simon to say, “I can’t listen to anymore of that…” Then he asks, “Why did you have your finger in your ear?” Randy pipes in, “To stop the pain.”
Richard Valles 19, Tampa, FL – “God Bless the Broken Road” by Rascal Flatts – Richard gives new meaning to the phrase (uttered hilariously by Chris Richardson last year) “Nasally is a form of singing.” Really, Richard needs to consult an ENT stat. I’m sure there is a procedure out there that could help him. Randy laughs through the whole audition. Then he mocks the way he sings, pretty accurately. The poor kid just stares at him. Needless to say, Richard does not advance…
Julie Dubela 16, Stratham, NH – “Me and Bobby McGhee” by Janis Joplin – A cautionary tale–for those parents considering pushing their wee ones into show business. See, what happens to a kid that is taught to act like an adult before they are ready, is that they just keep acting. Julie was 12 years old when she made the Top 20 of the American Juniors competition in 2003. Ryan hosted that show, but he does not remember her. I purposely avoided that show, so I have no idea. We see shots of Julie back then, smiling a creepy Jon-Bonet Ramsey smile. Bleah. Julie’s got that snotty attitude of someone who has been made to feel entitled at an early age. But like most child actors who have been sheltered from the real world, she is clueless. When Simon says American Juniors was a good show, she COMPLETELY misses his sarcasm. Like, WHOOSH. But then, she’s so busy listening to the sound of her own voice, it’s no wonder she doesn’t notice. Her performance is full of vocal affectations. There isn’t a move that isn’t rehearsed. That’s the plague of growing up a pageant kid–guts and spontaneity are foreign concepts. After she’s done, Simon asks her if she’s ever been called precocious. Julie answers, “What does that mean?” OMG. Simon tells her that her performance is over-rehearsed and over-dramatic, and that he wants it without all the “weird acting.” She looks at him like he’s got three heads. “I’m just acting like myself right now, ” says Julie. “That’s the problem, ” deadpans Simon. Desperate now, she starts singing again, but the judges cut her off and send her on her way. I almost feel sorry for her, when she starts crying outside the audition room. But then, not so much, when she launches into a bitchy tirade on her way out. “Over indulged, ” says Simon. Indeed.
Brandon Black 20, Pompano Beach, FL – Ok, this was idiotic. I’m guessing dude can be found any night of the week at open mike nights all over Pompano Beach, Florida. And he probably empties out the place. He introduces himself in “character” and it’s pretty pathetic. So is his singing. Simon sums it up, “The audition was verging on desperation.”
It’s an anti-climatic way to end a pretty entertaining episode.
Seventeen Miami auditioners are on their way to Hollywood.
Next Tuesday, Ryan gets a free trip to his home town as the auditions move to the final city, Atlanta GA.