“Let’s begin tonight with song selection, ” says Ryan.
So, Ryan, Are you and the judges going to discuss how hard it is to get a song cleared? Or, the fact that the kids only have 50 songs to choose from, and, as rumor has it, they are more than likely not going to get their first choice, unless they are a favored-one?
No? Randy, Paula and Simon going to keep blaming the kids for their “poor song choices?” Well, alrighty then.
These songs TPTB picked for the kids? They suck. The horrible songs the kids have to choose from are really keeping the semis from being as entertaining and awe inspiring as they could be. And it’s NOT the kid’s fault.
The gang is calling Simon “Mr. Happy” now. How fitting.
Tonight, the girls’ performances of 70’s classics get mostly lukewarm responses from the judges. And, from Randy and Paula, we learn that the Glory Note is all that matters.
The video packages feature more fun facts to know and tell – Girl Power edition.
Carly Smithson ‘ …Crazy On You by Heart – Carly is no Anne Wilson, but she does a decent job with her classic song. Carly goes all rock n’ roll tonight in a tank top revealing the tattoos on her arms. No tongue bath from Randy and Paula tonight. Randy says, “It was good towards the end, sharp in the beginning. By the middle of the song you got it together.” Paula says, “You are an amazing singer, you did an amazing job.” Simon, “I thought it was a much better performance than last week. I still don’t think you’ve chosen that one song that’s going to give you the absolute moment. You are the girl they’ve all got to beat.” I’m not sure what Simon is waiting for. Carly is a good singer, but her vocals have yet to match the hype surrounding her talent. Frankly, I think we’ve seen everything we’re going to get from Carly. Fun Fact: Carly works as a bartender in an Irish Bar. She’s Suzy homemaker! She loves to clean and cook.
Syesha Mercado ‘ …Me And Mrs. Jones” by Billy Paul – How awesome would it be if Syesha performed this song without the gender switch up? I’d vote for that. As it is, I appreciate Syesha’s restraint on “Me and Mr. Jones”. She’s chill during the verses, but then busts out on the chorus, but without over-doing the vocal gymnastics. The judges aren’t having it. It appears they only like Syesha when she’s screaming. Randy says, “I don’t think this was a great song choice for you. When you do those soft little verses, it goes nowhere for me.” Paula says, “The soft notes are where you tend to go off.” Simon says, “I thought it was a bit indulgent, it wasn’t written for a girl…I was put off as soon as you started.” Fun Fact: Syesha has done a lot of commercials in Miami. But then again, we knew that.
Brooke White ‘ …Youre So Vain by Carly Simon – Brooke plays guitar sitting on a stool, performing an entire verse without the band. Thankfully, once the band joins her, they don’t drown out her delicate vocals. Brooke is tricky. Can a contestant with a subtle approach make it in a competition where louder is better? I think Brooke brings something new to the Idol table, I hope she sticks around. Randy says, “It was a great song choice for you, I don’t know if you brought anything different to it.” Paula says, “It suits you, I like what you did with it. You brought familiarity, everyone was digging it.” Simon says, “I absolutely loved it. It was absolutely perfect for you, it connected, the song didn’t sound old fashioned.” Maybe Simon is flattered–Brooke appears to be singing the song straight at him. It’s all good. Simon’s vote of confidence could help to propel Brooke and her lovely vocals into the Top 12. Fun Fact: Brooke went to Beauty school. Half way through the program she started singing.
Ramiele Malubay ‘ …Dont Leave Me This Way by Thelma Houston – Ryan chats with Ramiele about her hysterical crying during last week’s eliminations. She says, in her weird little squeaky voice, that she was upset because she lost both her roommate and her good friend Colton Berry. Her performance of “Don’t Leave Me This Way” lacks the original’s urgency, but I blame the arrangement that has her repeating the verse over again, without the opportunity to get all hot on the chorus. Some songs don’t withstand being edited down to 1:30. Randy says, “This was a little rough for me. It wasn’t my favorite choice for you…there were so many dope records in the 7o’s…for you to chose that song…” And I’m guessing most of those dope songs weren’t on the short list of 50. Paula garbles, “Ramiele, you are one to beat here, your vocals are truly amazing. I feel kinda the same way…you powered through…the same notes…you didn’t get to perform your magic.” Simon says, “I agree with Paula…I thought you were much better last week, you showed more personality. This is one of those performances I’m not going to remember so well…I think you’re terrific, you are one of the Top 3 singers in this competition, but it wasn’t one of your best.” Fun fact: Ramiele used to Polynesian dance as a child.
Kristy Lee Cook ‘ …Youre No Good by Linda Ronstadt – Kristy is looking alive this week. Literally. Her illness last week must have really knocked her out, because tonight her eyes look lively and she’s working the stage. Too bad the song is so repetitive. The song goes nowhere. It’s frustrating trying to judge these singers based on performances of crappy songs that are crappily arranged. Randy says, “100% improvement over last week. I was looking for some break out moments…but I liked it.” Paula says, “You’re back, you’re back, you’re back.” Simon says, “It was a huge improvement. I don’t know what kind of singer you are. If you go down the country route…You have real potential.” Well, TPTB have picked out her box, Kristy better jump into it! She promises Simon she’ll bring the country next week. Fun Fact: Kristy is a tomboy. She loves getting dirty! But not like that…
Amanda Overmyer ‘ …Carry On My Wayward Son by Kansas – What the f**k happened to Amanda’s hair? She’s scaring me. OMG, please kill her stylist, she looks like a fright. And the song? It’s completely wrong for her vocal range. She’s really struggling in her lower register. When she belts, there’s a little improvement. She might have done better in a higher key. Oh well–it’s not as if the song is some kind of masterpiece of songwriting in the first place. Unfortunately, this performance is truly bad enough to end her Idol run, keeping her out of the Top 12. Randy says, “It wasn’t the right song choice for you. Too much melody, too many instrumental breaks…the verses were very pitchy.” Too much melody? What does that mean? Randy then suggests that Amanda hop back into her blues/rock box and never come out. Sadly, he may be right. Paula says, “You’ve got some moves, you can dance. Do what fits right and what feels right. You are brilliant, this was not the right song for you.” Simon says, “…In your film, you came over very natural, but your performance was contrived…I couldn’t wait for you to finish.” Fun Fact: Amanda is a bookworm. She likes biographies of Rock stars!
Alaina Whitaker ‘ …Hopelessly Devoted To You by Olivia Newton-John – If I never heard this song, from the “Grease” soundtrack, ever again, I’d be fine with that. This week’s theme has served to remind me of everything I hated about 70’s music. Having said that, Alaina does a pleasant, country take on the song, throwing in a few big, albeit pitchy, notes in the appropriate places. Randy says, AGAIN, “I don’t think it was the right song for you…it was pitchy.” So, Randy, which of the songs on that short list of 50 DO you think was right for Alaina? Paula says, “I think you did a real good job. I forget how young you are and mature you are.” That’s Paula’s version of “OMG!11! You’re only 17!@!” Simon says, “I like you, my problem is that your grandmother prepared this for you. It was very old fashioned… it was all a bit pageanty. On a positive note…I think you’re one of the dark horses in this competition.” Fun Fact: Alaina doesn’t like the food on her plate to touch the other. How fascinating.
Alexandrea Lushington ‘ …If You Leave Me Now by Chicago – Alex could be the dark horse in this competition if TPTB would give her half a chance. As it is, they appear to have no use for her. She consistently chooses interesting songs to sing, and delivers the songs well. Tonight, she displays smooth vocals on this classic Chicago tune. I think it’s one of the best vocals of the night. But again, it’s a mid-tempo song without a big finish. You know, no glory note, no glory. Randy says, “It was so safe for you, you have mad vocal skills, you should never make safe choices.” Paula says, “I never heard a female take on that song, I’ve been impressed with you since day one.” Simon says, “I was a big fan of yours in the early days, I think you are struggling now…it was boring.” No wonder Alex feels like the underdog. Fun Fact: She was a poster child for the Atlanta Fire department. Here dad worked for them.
Kady Malloy ‘ …Magic Man by Heart – Oh man, what’s wrong Kady? She’s completely overpowered by bandzilla, and seems to be sleepwalking through the performance. Has she given up, knowing that she’s designated cannon fodder? Her pitch is all over the place tonight. Don’t give up Kady! Oh well, it’s too late. Kady is probably packing her bags as I write this. Randy says, “It just never found the pitch, you never settled on to the note. It didn’t work.” Paula says, “When you powered, you sounded great. You sing opera well.” Simon says, “I’m struggling as much as you’re struggling here. Everything you do on film is fantastic.” Did Simon actually admit that he’s never heard of “Magic Man”? Did he spend his teen years in a cave? Fun Fact: Kady sings Opera–In the bathroom!
Asiah Epperson ‘ All By Myself by Celine Dion – Simon calls “All by Myself” the ultimate Diva song. If that’s true, why can’t I get Eric Carmen’s decidedly subtle and tender version out of my head? Hm. Asia’h takes her shot at this song, and she misses the target. The arrangement is weird, she doesn’t take off with the vocals when expected, and when she does, she’s really off key. This performance is a hot mess. But, apparently, Asia’h isn’t feeling well. Randy says, “I know you’ve been sick…very difficult song to sing…Celine sang everything out of it…but I got to tell you…you did a really good job with that song.” Ok, Randy is totally blowing off the fact that she wrecked the song. Paula begins speaking in sign language, but then finally says, “It was great, you had problems in the low notes, but you know what? The ending brought it home…that’s what counts on this song.” Simon spoils the party, “…It is one of the diva songs of all time, and you have to be one heck of a singer to pull that off, and unfortunately, you’re not…you nearly did it, but you’re not that good a singer…the song was too big for you. In my opinion, it showed you up, I think it was a silly decision.” Fun Fact: Asia’h was a cheerleader. She loved it!