Chuck Ross from TV Week interviews American Idol producer Ken Warwick for the magazine’s weekly Backlot Talk interview.
- Ken mentions that tonight, Ryan will be announcing more celebrities guests slated for the big charity event.
- Martina McBride will be guest mentor for next week’s country-themed week.
- Will there be any surprises tonight? Ken says, “We’re on for an hour, so we are doing a few fill-ins tonight, things have been stretched out and we’ve put a few…new couple of elements in, so it’s going to be worth watching.”
Before sizing up the contestants’ performances, Ken says that Latin music is always difficult for the contestants to sing. He mentions that Gloria Estefan week during Season 3 was challenging for some of the contestants that year. coughjohnstevenscough.
- Melinda – About Simon’s criticism that he didn’t like it, “It wasn’t so much the way she sang it, but the way she looked…she looked like an aging Shirley Bassey….now you got a black dress and high heels, that’s not really Latino. The fun Latino generates wasn’t there. You can’t just rely on your voice, you have to get into the whole performance and enjoy the whole thing…and she didn’t.”
- Lakisha – About singing “Conga”, “That was really out of her box, it was something she wasn’t comfortable with…it’s just so different from what she would normally sing. She comes from a church background and all these long drawn out notes and high pitch and huge range and all emotive stuff to suddenly…[Ken mimics singing the song]…it’s difficult to get your mouth around it…for her.”
- Chris – Chuck found mixed opinions about Chris’s performance on the message boards today, “I liked it…I didn’t know “Smooth” that well. I knew it, of course…the trouble is you’re so used to hearing Santana do that, that I think it was probably a bit too much of a shock.”
- Haley – About singing “Turn the Beat Around” – “Another difficult Gloria Estefan song. The judges had a go too. A lot of words to get your mouth around, especially when she was motoring around like she was. A tough call, really.” When Chuck asked Ken about Simon’s tough criticisms, Ken answered, “She’s got great legs.”
- Phil – About singing “Maria Maria”, “He sang it very well, to be truthful. Again, a very difficult song to sing but he’s got the range and he has got a good voice.”
- Jordin – Chuck says he likes her, but not so much last night, “I think that’s the general consensus…cause she can sing anything…relative to other contestants she…made a good job…again it was another one of those Gloria songs that Gloria does brilliantly, and other people struggle, no matter how well they sing.”
- Blake – Chuck thought it was the best performance last night, “I think he did a good job with that. I’m not sure about the outfit, he looked like he [unintelligible-Chuck steps on Ken’s line with an obsequious chortle].
- Sanjaya – On Sanjaya’s “surprising” performance, “I loved it, I thought it was great…the slow romantic song with the eyes into the camera…he’s starting to learn how to use the camera.”