Yoroshiku’s Recap – Manchester, NH 09/22

Yoro is a pal of mine from way back in season 3.   She and  a couple  other Season 3 pals were in NH with Sarah and I for Saturday’s concert.   Here is Yoro’s recap, I’m going to throw in a few of my pictures just for fun…


I admit, I wasn’t planning on going to the tour at all this year.   I was a yooge Blake fan during the season, but I was so wrapped up in work this summer that I didn’t have time to follow any of the news or gossip.   There was no way I could whip myself into the usual frenzy that I had for Elliott, Bo, JPL, etc.,  so my hometown show came and went  without me.   I got a second chance with the Manchester show, in my *old* hometown, thanks to a pal of MJ’s.   HaremCon Jr. with schmanda and Snarkin was on!
I’m glad I did go, because it turned out to be a pretty excellent show overall.   Like MJ, I’m a fan of the whole Idol experience in general – the goofy group numbers and the interactions between the finalists are more interesting to me than any one contestant, ever.   So I liked that last year’s concept of mixing duets with the solo numbers was taken a step further this time.    

Everyone here’s done a great job of capturing details, so I won’t repeat too much.
Chris Rich was the one whose stock rose most in my eyes after the concert.   I remember liking his personality but being a little irritated with him during the season because he relied so much on runs and trills that he just didn’t need IMO.   Either  he toned them down or he was so energetic that I must not have noticed them.   He was by far the best at engaging the crowd and I got the biggest kick out of watching him make hammy facial expressions, rolling his eyes and grinning like a madman.   He really got to show off how versatile he can be as a musician as well: guitar, beatboxing, singing without crazy runs??   I’m absolutely rooting for him now.

I didn’t expect to like Jordin as much as I did on Saturday; I’ve got nothing against her as a person, but I was so irritated by the hype around the finale  that I was planning to use her set as my bathroom break.   And I couldn’t; she was just too charming.   Dare I say that I actually liked “Livin’ on a Prayer”?   I think it’s gutsy that she went back to her most-panned performance and decided to give it another shot.   She’s got a Beyonce-like resilience that makes me root for her as a performer.    I’m also starting to understand the Kelly Clarkson comparisons; on top of her charm, she has a genuine enthusiasm  about many different genres of music.   And I don’t have any doubt she could tackle them if she really wanted to.   Four days later, I still can’t get her and  Chris’s duet of “What Hurts the Most” out of my head.
Phil’s voice is awesome, pure and clear.   He must have taken really good care of it to sound so good this late in the tour.   I agree with other recappers who say he’s got the kind of voice that really carries across an arena.   He was the one least likely to let the band overpower him.
Blake!   Working some sort of Clockwork Orange look with the hat.   The crowd went absolutely nuts for him.   I enjoyed his Jamiroquai-goes-ice-skating-while-moonwalking moves most, and he reminded me eerily of Jon Peter Lewis there.   I told Snarkin that I suspected JPL punched out Blake backstage, and took his place with the hat yanked down so no one would know.   The Kaoss tutorial was pretty neat too.   Who knows, he may have inspired someone in the crowd to pick that  up.   Thumbs  down on the Vanilla Ice  haircut though.  
Sanjaya was super-adorable.   I wouldn’t call myself a Fanjaya per se, but I’ve been a big defender of his (LEAVE SANJAYA ALONE!   *sniffle*) and I thought he was quite entertaining on Saturday.   I couldn’t get his and Melinda’s head-whipping moves from “Proud Mary” out of my head for hours afterwards.   No 18-year-old should know how to swivel his hips like that!

LaKisha seemed muted during the group numbers (was she sick?   She didn’t make the encore or the M&G) but was awesome on “I Will Always Love You”.   I wouldn’t have picked it for her but she sang the bejeezus out of it.   She was emotional but still controlled her voice nicely.   I found myself throwing a hand in the air like I was in “chu’ch” without even knowing.

Melinda was excellent as always and I loved when she started trading off lines with the backup singer.   It was such a “passing the baton” moment, and seems like typical Melinda.   Her duet  with Jordin was spirited and fun as well.   Although  I couldn’t resist popping off during their intro:

Melinda: “I worried about rooming with Jordin, because I’m 29 and she’s only 17…”
Me:  “SHE IS?!?!”
Crowd around me: That needle-off-the-record effect from your favorite Rob Schneider movie  trailer.

Sligh was in good form although he still appears a little uncomfortable in his skin onstage.   A dry sense of humor doesn’t always work well with a huge crowd, but once his skin thickens a little more, I’m sure he’ll be just fine.   He’s another one with a nice pure voice.   Loved him on “Crazy”.   And yeah,  I’m gonna have to give him props for his blog posts that bragged about how special  this year’s setlist was going to be!
Gina’s style isn’t always my bag and I thought she was overpowered by the band in a few spots, but she was really appealing nonetheless.   The thing I liked best about her on the show was how geeked she was to be there and never acted like anything was beneath her, and she was the same in concert.   She looked like she was having a blast marching around in the corsets and feathers with the other ladies.
Haley was probably my least favorite of the 10, but she wasn’t horrible by any means.   (Please, I sat through Jasmine Trias’s numbers at 4 concerts during Season 3.   Now there’s a benchmark for you.)   Just sort of… there.   I have to admit that I got a little Mystery Science Theater 3000 whenever she came on stage; I’d immediately start cheering and clapping for “Stacy”.   I know, very mean, especially since I kind of liked her during the season.   The problem is she doesn’t have a whole lot of charisma or personality in her voice and is forgettable compared to the others.   Even Seacrest called her “Stacey” before she got voted off, for Gawd’s sake!
All in all, I’m glad I went, and I  waggle my finger  in Birmingham’s general direction  for  their sparse attendance.   :)  

About mj santilli 35006 Articles
Founder and editor of mjsbigblog.com, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!