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Idol Chit-Chat
This is your place to discuss all things "American Idol." The performances, the judges, the past contestants — it’s all right here.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

So who's going home?

So who’s going home? Please allow me to make my first bold prediction of the season. LaKisha is going home. She committed a major Idol sin—messing up a current song. And by a popular Idol no less. I think it will cost her.

However, that does bring up an interesting question. If I’m right and LaKisha does get the lowest number of votes, will the show actually let her go home before Sanjaya?

Thoughts?

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

So who's going home?

So who’s going home? I know I made this prediction last week, but I really think it’s Phil. Now since he’s got a whole hour to work with, it’s really hard to tell how Ryan will do the eliminations. But if he does a bottom three, I’m going with Phil, Haley and Chris. Obviously, I’m rooting for Chris to go.

There is absolutely no way Sanjaya is going home tomorrow night. Although I think it would be terribly ironic for him to go after a decent performance, it’s just not going to happen. Sorry…

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go vote for Blake—a lot. And I’m also going to throw in some votes for Phil since I’d really like to see him sing country next week…

Your thoughts?

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Tuesday, April 3, 2007

So who's going home?

Before we talk about who’s going home, let me remind you something about the performance show. If you thought that LaKisha’s last note in the recap sounded better than it did in the performance, you’re right. Due to the time crunch, we see the rehearsal version of the final singer in the recap. But she really should have taken Tony’s advice.

So who’s going home? I really don’t think there’s any question this week: It’s Phil. His performance was gloomy with a rough beginning and he’s been in the bottom three twice already. Plus, the editors didn’t do him any favors by giving him a bad clip in the recap. And it doesn’t help his cause that Sanjaya was actually okay (and Tony loved him) and Haley strutted her stuff.

Who will join him in the bottom three (if they do three)? I would definitely say Gina, but I’m not sure at all about that third one.

The results air tomorrow at 9 p.m. on FOX—the final half-hour edition for a while.

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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

What happened?

Okay, so what happened? Well, one of my cardinal rules is to never admit an accident is your fault—even if it is. It’s the same thing about bad performances. Chris should have never admitted it was bad. He should have kept the sense of humor we all know and love and just shrugged it off. But his continual harping on his mistakes did him in. I didn’t really think it was that bad…

Next week it’s Tony Bennett, which I’m guessing means standards, which probably means strong weeks for both Haley and Sanjaya—as if their performances even matter any more…

I just really don’t know what else to say…

Your thoughts?...

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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

So who's going home?

Sanjaya sang that he was “diving into his own destruction.” From your lips to America’s ears…

So do I think this is the week he finally goes? I think it’s our best shot to get rid of him with his cocky attitude and stupid Mohawk and I think he forgot some words too.

If it isn’t Sanjaya that goes, I think it will be Haley, but I’d be okay with Chris Richardson. He’s starting to annoy me.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go vote for Phil so he doesn’t end up in the bottom again and Blake just because…

Your thoughts?...

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Thursday, March 8, 2007

Did We Get the Right 12?

I knew there was going to be a surprise tonight, I just predicted the wrong one. I knew either Antonella or Sanjaya would get through, but I thought it would be Antonella.

But when I saw Sanjaya and Sundance standing alone, I could just feel what was going to happen next…

Tonight, we said goodbye to Jared Cotter, Antonella Barba, Sabrina Sloan, and yes, Sundance Head.

So what happened? Jared just wasn’t original enough, although I preferred him to Brandon Rogers. With Sabrina, I think it was a personality thing. She came off a little too cocky and a little too robotic. But Sundance? I really can’t say. Maybe they didn’t like him attempting Pearl Jam, or maybe they were already over him after his lousy beginning. Or maybe Sanjaya is just that popular.

I’m betting Votefortheworst.com is taking all of the credit as we speak.

As for the judges they had no explanation whatsoever. Simon said maybe the audience had the volume turned down. Paula once again gave her singing competition speech while trying not to badmouth Sanjaya. Interestingly, not one of the other contestants gave Sanjaya a hug of congratulations.

That makes your top 12 Lakisha Jones, Blake Lewis, Chris Sligh, Jordin Sparks, Phil Stacey, Melinda Doolittle, Brandon Rogers, Gina Glocksen, Chris Richardson, Stephanie Edwards, Haley Scarnato, and Sanjaya Malakar.

The show also featured a performance by Carrie Underwood, who didn’t really act like she wanted to be there and the “big announcement” Ryan had been hyping all week turned out to be a charity initiative to help impoverished people in Africa and the United States (I’ll have more on that in the coming days.).

I’ll have much more on the top 12 this weekend, but feel free to give me your initial thoughts now. Were you as surprised as the judges?

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Wednesday, March 7, 2007

The Top 8 Girls Make It Interesting...

Thankfully for us and the show, the girls once again saved us from the blahs. And for the very first time I was compelled to vote.

Maybe next year they’ll rethink this whole six guys and six girls thing…

I really wish Ryan would have rethought that turtleneck…

Here’s the rundown…

Jordin Sparks, “Heartbreaker”: 17
You have to admire Jordin for attempting to rock out, but she missed most of the big notes. And that song really focused on the background singers a little too much to showcase her voice.

Sabrina Sloan, “Don’t Let Go (Love)”: 17
I LOVE this song and I thought it was an excellent choice. However, she sounded like she was shouting through some of it and she has very little stage presence.

Antonella Barba, “Put Your Records On”: 11
This was Antonella’s best performance, but that really doesn’t mean much. Her performance did provide some of the night’s most awkward moments as Simon took the opportunity to compliment her on how she’s handled the controversy, but blasted her singing.

Haley Scarnato, “If My Heart Had Wings”: 11
You know it was bad when I almost rated her below Antonella. This was just so cheesy I wanted to run from the room.

Stephanie Edwards, “Sweet Thing”: 16
The performance was good and she’s got a great voice, but this whole arrangement was weird.

Lakisha Jones, “I Have Nothing”: 16
I know it was a good performance, but why didn’t she do the strongest part of the song?

Gina Glocksen, “You Only Call Me When You’re Sober”: 14
This was a good performance and the band was awesome but it was a horrible song choice. Remember what I said about current songs. Simon must agree with me because he lobbied hard for her to stay.

Melinda Doolittle, “I’m a Woman”: 20
My only problem with this performance was that it was too short.

So who should go home? It’s a no-brainer: Antonella and Haley. As for who will go home? I think Haley is definitely gone—especially after her whole “clock in, clock out” comment that made her sound cocky and disinterested. But I really think Gina is in more trouble than Antonella.

And in case you’re wondering, my first votes of the season went to Melinda because I was concerned people might think she’s safe…

We’ll find out the top 12 PLUS we’ll hear the “big announcement” tomorrow at 8 p.m. on FOX…

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Tuesday, March 6, 2007

The Top 8 Guys: Back to Blah

So for their last performances before the top 12 are announced the guys decided to go back to blah, leaving the judges to say only four of them deserve to be in the top 12 (They didn’t say which four.).

And let me take a minute to give some props to Paula Abdul who has really stepped up her game as a judge over these past few weeks. I think even Simon has been taken aback…

So, here’s a breakdown of the blah…

Blake Lewis, “All Mixed Up”: 18
His pitch wasn’t perfect but the choice was original.

Sanjaya Malakar, “Waiting for the World to Change”: 8
Remember what I said about how contestants should never do songs currently on the charts? Maybe that will finally be the end of Sanjaya. I was probably a little harsh, but I am SO done with him!

Sundance Head, “Jeremy”: 12
It was a good song choice, but hardly any of it was on key.

Chris Richardson, “Tonight I Wanna Cry”: 12
After wowing the judges with his upbeat performance Chris does a country ballad? And finally someone (Simon) said something about his nasal voice.

Jared Cotter, “If You Really Love Me”: 14
This was probably the best of Jared’s performances but I am so done with Stevie Wonder songs.

Brandon Rogers, “I Just Want to Celebrate”: 14
The fact that Simon called him Travis should tell you how unmemorable he is.

Phil Stacey, “I Need You”: 15
I actually disagree with the judges here, because I thought it was a gutsy song choice and I really liked the arrangement. He just didn’t nail it and the screaming between phrases didn’t help matters.

Chris Sligh, “We All Wanna Be Loved”: 16
This was actually a good performance, it just seemed blah to me. Maybe it was the effect of the entire night.

So who should go home? Do I even need to say it? Please America, do the right thing and send Sanjaya home. This is getting painful!

As for the other eliminated contestant, I think it’s a toss-up between Brandon, Jared and Phil. I think the four the judges were referring to were Blake, Sundance, Chris and Chris.

So, will the girls give us the same or will they bring it once again? We’ll find out tomorrow night at 8 on FOX…

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Thursday, March 1, 2007

America Gets It Wrong...

I hate to criticize America, but you got it wrong this week…

I know that because Antonella and Sanjaya survived.

It’s official. We have met the new Jasmine Trias and Kevin Covais…

If you missed it, we said goodbye to Nick, Alaina, A.J. and Leslie. I picked Alaina to go home and I wasn’t a big fan of A.J. or Leslie, but Nick? You know I thought he brought it with his version of “Fever.”

The night’s events completely stunned Sanjaya, devastated Sundance, Gina and Jordin and forced Paula to bring out the “It’s a singing competition” speech a little earlier than usual.

But here’s an important reminder for Jordin fans: Just because she was one of the last two girls standing does NOT mean she was in the bottom two. That’s just how they decided to dramatize it tonight. We don’t learn the actual bottom two until we get to the top 12.

There were also a few moments that will once again have people criticizing making the eliminated contestants sing. Alaina was so overcome with emotion that she asked the other girls to join her, and then just let the background singers take care of it. Instead of her atrocious scatting, Leslie sang, “Why did I decide to scat? I don’t even really care for jazz.” And for the first time, we heard the same song from two eliminated contestants—the ironically named “Feelin’ Good.”

I’m just waiting for the night when a contestant curses…

One person that should be glad she’s no longer competing is Kellie Pickler, who sang a completely blah “I Wonder,” her new single. I really didn’t like her short hair and she apparently lost the top of her dress. I don’t think Ryan looked her in the eye once…

Next week, we finally get down to the Top 12 and then things get interesting, I hope…

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Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Top 10 Girls: This Round Goes to Melinda...

Last week, the girls had nowhere to go but up after a dreary show with the guys. But since the guys brought it this week, the pressure was on. And some handled it well, while others cracked.

But one thing’s for sure. The battle of the dueling divas just got more interesting…

Here are my results:

Gina Glocksen, “Alone”: 12
This was probably a little harsh because I gave her a two in song choice. Never sing a song that another “Idol” contestant rocked the house with—in this case, Carrie Underwood.

Alaina Alexander, “I’m Not Ready to Make Nice”: 9
Here’s another tip: Stay away from songs currently on the charts. Not that it made any difference in this case since hardly any of it was on key.

Lakisha Jones, “Midnight Train to Georgia”: 18
It was nice to see Lakisha’s fun side and she’s still phenomenal; but my problem with this song has always been that there’s not enough of a chance for the contestant to showcase their voice.

Melinda Doolittle, “My Funny Valentine”: 20
Sorry, Constantine. No one is going to remember your version after this. Holy cow!

Antonella Barba, “Because You Loved Me”: 10
I gave her an extra point because she hit the high note at the end, but I almost took it away for her weak Jennifer Hudson argument for Simon. I don’t remember Simon being hard on Jennifer, other than for her clothes—which he was usually right about. And as I suspected, there was no mention of the pictures.

Jordin Sparks, “Reflection”: 17
Poor Jordin. She let the show’s stupid dedication idea get the best of her as her emotions messed up her singing a little bit. But she pulled it out in the end and the judges LOVE her—even Simon. I thought the arrangement really didn’t do her any favors either.

Stephanie Edwards, “Dangerously In Love”: 16
She reminds me of Latoya London from season three—and that’s not a bad thing. But the timing of this song sounded a little off.

Leslie Hunt, “Feeling Good”: 11
This is the same song A.J. did last night and he actually did it better. That scatting was atrocious—although it did produce Simon’s best joke of the night when he said it sounded like Paula talking.

Haley Scarnato, “Queen of the Night”: 15
Haley’s voice reminds me of Jodi Benson, the voice of “The Little Mermaid.” She has a nice voice, she’s just not street enough to pull off this song. However, I appreciated what she was trying to do so I gave her high points on song choice and she’s got great stage presence.

Sabrina Sloan, “All the Man That I Need”: 12
When will these girls learn to stop singing Whitney? It wasn’t horrible, it just wasn’t great for me.

So who’s going home? Clearly Antonella needs to go, but I think she’s got a really strong fan base, so she could end up staying. I think Alaina’s days are numbered, however, after butchering a current song. If Antonella doesn’t go, the second spot is a toss-up between Leslie and Haley.

And in the competition between Lakisha and Melinda, this round goes to Melinda…

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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The Top 10 Guys: "This time it's personal..."

So after last week’s boring performances, the guys really needed to step it up. And most of them did.

But even if all of the performances were not fantastic, the show was definitely entertaining as the judges were in rare form—though I could’ve done without those sappy dedications.

But as Ryan ominously said at the beginning, “This time it’s personal”…

Here are my thoughts on our top 10 guys…

Phil Stacey, “Missing You”: 17
He actually got the first note right for a change. But as good of a song choice as it was, it still didn’t completely work for me since I thought he needed to show a little more emotion. The ending, however, was good.

Jared Cotter, “Let’s Get It On”: 14
He dedicated that song to his parents? For some reason, Jared is just not connecting with me as I thought the song was blah until the end.

A.J. Tabaldo, “Feeling Good”: 15
His dancing was cheesy, but the upbeat part of the song was really not that bad. He hasn’t really connected with me either, though.

Sanjaya Malakar, “Steppin’ Out”: 11
His voice is still gorgeous, but only he could make a song like that sound blah. However, his dedication to his grandmother may save him.

Chris Sligh, “Trouble”: 19
Other than Chris’ tendency to slur his words, this song was gorgeous.

Nick Pedro, “Fever”: 18
I really liked this, but he missed those notes in the middle. If he had hit them all, I may have given him a perfect score.

Blake Lewis, “Virtual Insanity”: 17
It was a good song choice, but I’m not sure he really nailed it.

Brandon Rogers, “Time After Time”: 14
I liked this arrangement, but he didn’t do it justice. And what was up with those weird hand gestures?

Chris Richardson, “Geek In the Pink”: 17
For some reason I wasn’t as completely enthralled with this one as the judges were. Maybe it’s because I don’t like Jason Mraz. The chorus was really good, but he missed that verse.
Sundance Head, “Mustang Sally”: 18
Yes, Sundance is back, but for some reason, I didn’t enjoy him as much as I did Chris. Maybe I’d already given up on him.

So, who’s going home? Well, clearly Sanjaya should, but whether he will is another story. I still have a feeling he’s another Kevin Covais in the making—especially with his argument that he sang that song for his grandmother. As for the other person who should go, for me, it’s a toss-up between Jared and Brandon. Jared gave an average performance of a song he could have done so much more with and Brandon gave an average performance of a really good arrangement. I have to agree with Simon that Brandon’s “feeling it” story just didn’t cut it.

The secret to this episode was to pick the right song and then dedicate it to someone like Chris R. did, not to connect the dedication with the song as Sanjaya and Brandon did. We’ll see tomorrow which one the girls do…

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Thursday, February 22, 2007

The Season's First Results Show: A Moment By Moment Recap

Since I know many of you don’t watch the entire results episode because you can’t handle all the stall tactics, and since many of you were no doubt watching that big Huntington High game, I thought I’d do one of my famous minute-by-minute recaps to catch you up…

I apologize for the hour delay; but I did have to say goodbye to “The O.C.”…

For the first time this season, let’s go to the recap…

8:00 Intro

8:01 Ryan walks down the steps past the 24 contestants. Chris Sligh is on the end instead of with the guys. Hmmm…Ryan says there were about 32 million votes cast last night…Ryan asks Randy if a guy can win and Randy says it’s the girls’ to lose. Simon says there are two or three guys with potential. Paula says the guys can only go up from here, which Simon says is not true…

8:02 Ryan names some of the artists who will work with the Idols this season: Diana Ross, Jon Bon Jovi, Jennifer Lopez, Gwen Stefani, Tony Bennett, Martina McBride, Lulu and Peter Noone (for British Invasion night) and Barry Gibb…

8:03 Recap

8:06 Group sing: “Sewing the Seeds of Love”
Why are they letting Phil start the song? Actually, he handles it okay…That’s the best Sundance has sounded in two weeks…Wow! This is cheesy…Where did Jordin get all of that confidence at age 17?...I never thought of Tears for Fears as cheesy. Leave it to “American Idol”…Break

8:12 The eliminations are starting early…Ryan talks to the guys seated in two rows. Nick says he’s petrified. Chris Sligh says he’s concerned about his exchange with Simon and that America might think he was being disrespectful when he wasn’t, saying he loves Simon. Simon says, “I like this guy”…

8:13 The back row joins Ryan on the stage…Brandon—safe…Sundance—safe (?!)…Chris R.—safe…Nick—safe…I smell a trick…Blake and Paul left…Blake—safe

8:16 Paul—going home. No trick. Ryan asks Randy what Paul can do and he says choose the right songs. Paula says he tried too hard. Paul says, “it hurts”…

8:17 Paul sings “Careless Whisper.” “I feel so unsure” seems so appropriate now…Break

8:23 Ryan talks to girls in two rows…Lakisha says she’s nervous. “You never know,” she says…

8:24 Back row onto stage with Ryan…Jordin—safe…Stephanie—safe…Sabrina—safe…Leslie—safe…Melinda and Antonella left…Melinda—safe…I smell a trick…Antonella—safe. I told you. Everyone is shocked…Ryan asks Amy to join him…Amy is out…Simon tells her she needs to stand out…Amy asks if she can sing another song, but the band’s not cooperating…She sings “I Can’t Make You Love Me”…Melinda is in tears…Antonella is shocked…Sanjaya is in tears…

8:29 After the break…

8:33 Ryan introduces the American Idol challenge, a new cell phone trivia game…

8:34 Fantasia comes out with orange hair…Quincy Jones is in the audience…She tells the big news that she’s going to be starring in “The Color Purple” on Broadway…Quincy, one of the Broadway show’s producers, says she’s absolutely ready. He tries to say more but Ryan cuts him off (Yikes!). Fantasia sings “I’m Here” from the show…She’ll start April 10th…Hope she’s worked on her acting…Don’t really care for that tattoo on her chest…Simon seems completely enthralled. He’s always said she was his favorite Idol. The judges give her a standing ovation and she almost cries…Break…

8:44 Remaining girls on stage with Ryan…Haley—safe…Lakisha (Ryan’s going out of order now)—safe…Gina—safe…Nicole and Alaina left. Will Ryan have to say goodbye to his girlfriend?...No, Alaina is safe. Nicole is out. Yea! I got one right!...Ryan says this is the worst part of the week…Paula says she’s a brilliant vocalist…She sings “Stay”…Lakisha tries to get the other girls to join Nicole on stage, but they don’t go along with it and she goes back…The song still sounds like crap…Paula dances while Simon laughs at her…

8:49 The girls hug…Break…

8:52 Ryan says time is tight…Remaining guys on stage…Chris Sligh—safe…Phil—safe…Paula’s chowing down on something…Jared—safe…A.J. (out of order)—safe…Sanjaya and Rudy—one is in the top four (?!) and one is out…Rudy—out. Sanjaya is safe. He’s clearly very popular…I got another one!...

8:55 When Ryan asks for advice for Rudy, Simon says he can’t turn an okay singer into a good one. Randy says he needs to keep getting better. Paula says he has one of the best vocals and she is very, very sad…

8:56 A taped look back at all four eliminated contestants…Daughtry’s “Home” is the elimination song and it sounds great…

8:57 Rudy does “Free Ride”…He starts by saying, “I’m gonna go out with a bang if that’s all right”…

9:00 And we’re out. So Rudy, where was the bang?

So I got two out of four right as we said goodbye to Rudy, Nicole, Amy and Paul. We learned that Sanjaya has a big fan base since he was in the top four of the guys (I smell another Kevin Covais here.) and apparently, America is not yet done with Sundance. And it looks like Antonella could be this year’s Jasmine or Carmen.

So what happened to my guy Paul? He butchered a classic and I think that barefoot thing was just too weird.

The guys will sing again on Tuesday beginning at 8…

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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The Top 12 Women: A League of Their Own

After the universally panned show last night (regardless of what Ryan said), the girls knew they had to bring it.

And for the most part they did, making some people question the whole six girls, six guys rules for the top 12…

Let’s take a closer look…

Stephanie Edwards, “How Come You Don’t Call Me Anymore”: 18
This was probably a little generous, but it was so different from anything we heard last night. And I had to give her a 5 in stage presence after she fell to her knees. I also gave her a 5 for song choice, because unlike most of the guys last night, she stayed true to who she is.

Amy Krebs, “I Can’t Make You Love Me”: 14
Sorry, Amy, but Constantine closed the book on this one two years ago. She has a great tone to her voice, but there were too many runs and it was just too pitchy.

Leslie Hunt, “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman”: 13
Not only did Leslie have to take on Aretha, she had to take on Kelly Clarkson, who rocked this one in season one. This score is probably a little harsh, but I have to agree with Simon that she seemed completely uncomfortable. Her body movements were all over the place.

Sabrina Sloan, “I Never Loved a Man (the Way I Love You)”: 19
As I was watching her audition tapes, I was trying to figure out how she got here. She certainly answered my question. As she told Ryan, she definitely did her homework and picked just the right song. I would’ve given her a perfect score if she could’ve hit the low notes as well as she hit the high ones.

Antonella Barba, “I Don’t Wanna Miss a Thing”: 11
Many websites have picked her as the first to go, and she didn’t do anything to prove them wrong tonight. This score may have been a little harsh because I can’t stand this song. But you know it’s a bad performance when Paula plays the “You look beautiful” card.

Jordin Sparks, “Give Me One Reason”: 19
When we first met 17-year-old Jordin, I was concerned we had another Lisa Tucker on our hands (That’s not a compliment, by the way.), but the amount of stage presence Jordin has is just ridiculous. And I love her personality, so I may have been just a tad generous.

Nicole Tranquillo, ‘Stay”: 9
What was that?! I guess she was trying to sound like Chaka Khan with all that weird intonation in her voice, but she failed miserably. And she had zero stage presence with all those weird jerky movements.

Haley Scarnato, “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now”: 15
When I heard Celine, I got worried, but I actually like this song—even though it gives me flashbacks to that weird Meatloaf moment in last season’s finale. The problem with Haley is that her voice is too polished, with too much vibrato. She hit all the right notes, it just wasn’t anything special. But if I was still judging appearance, she’d get a 5 for that great outfit.

Melinda Doolittle, “Since You’ve Been Gone”: 20
My first perfect score of the season. I originally had a 4 in stage presence to reflect her small lack of confidence, but after she didn’t miss a single note, I had to change it.

Alaina Alexander, “Brass In Pocket”: 13
What a horrible choice of song! With that breathy voice, Alaina had nowhere near the vocal chops to pull this one off. And I’m sorry, Ryan; but Simon was right. You were flirting with her. I had actually made that same note on my scoring sheet just before Simon mentioned it. And yes, I think Ryan was a little upset by that one. The truth hurts.

Gina Glocksen, “All By Myself”: 17
This was a nice surprise for me. She didn’t totally pull it off, but it was pretty good.

Lakisha Jones, “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going”: 20
Talk about gutsy! Ladies and gentlemen, you have just met your frontrunner. But remember, those theme nights have tripped up good singers before.

So who’s going home? For me, this is an easy call—Antonella and Nicole. But Amy and Leslie are also possibilities.

One thing is for certain. If things stay the way they are, this year’s winner will most certainly be a girl. Wouldn’t you love to see a Melinda vs. Lakisha finale?

I know I’m getting ahead of myself. Remember what I said about theme nights…

Tomorrow’s results show begins at 8 p.m., followed by the series finale of “The O.C.” at 9. Fantasia will perform, probably so we’ll remember who she is. Ryan promised a big announcement, but he also promised us one of our favorite “Idol” alumni, so we’ll take it for what it’s worth…

Allow me to end this post by borrowing Ryan’s close tonight…

I’ve been Angela Henderson and you’ve been great…

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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

The Top 12 Guys: Two Hours of Blah...

So tonight we began the voting rounds.

But I think someone forgot to tell the contestants since tonight’s show was basically two hours of blah…

Before I get to the recap, let me explain how this works…

I rate each contestant according to the official “American Idol” scorecard from “American Idol Magazine.” The scorecard has five categories: vocal ability, song choice, personality, appearance and stage presence. Each category is rated from 1 to 5 (with five being the best) and then totaled. The maximum score a contestant can receive is 25.

However, since the new issue of “American Idol” is delayed until next month, I was forced to make my own scorecard. So I took this opportunity to eliminate the category that has proven the most controversial for me in the past—appearance. Don’t believe me? You should have seen the deluge of e-mails I got two seasons ago when Carrie Underwood got a bad score for her performance of “Alone” because I didn’t like her hair…

So, I will only be judging on vocal ability, song choice, personality and stage presence with the maximum score being 20.

Now that we’ve got the rules down, let’s see how I rated our top 12 guys…

Rudy Cardenas, “Free Ride”: 13
Yikes! I’m starting out harsh, aren’t I? It just didn’t do anything for me and I thought he slurred too many of the words. He seemed a little uncomfortable trying to dance too. I did give him a 4 in song choice, only because he didn’t choose a ballad.

Brandon Rogers, “Rock With You”: 14
I wavered quite a bit on that vocal ability score, but it was just too shaky for me to score it high. He also needs to work on his stage presence. And yes, we know he’s a background singer. We can shut up about it now.

Sundance Head, “Knights In White Satin”: 13
I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a contestant choke this badly after a blockbuster audition. This score was probably a little generous since I thought the song choice was a good one to showcase his voice, if he had bothered to use it. Simon summed it up best with a cutting “I don’t like you tonight.”

Paul Kim, “Careless Whisper”: 13
Great song, but bad choice for Paul. He totally blew past the verse to get to the chorus—which was a little stronger—but then he blew the falsetto.

Chris Richardson, “I Don’t Wanna Be”: 11
Well, at least Simon agreed with me. I thought his voice sounded weird through the whole thing. It’s a good song, just not right for him.

Nick Pedro, “Now and Forever”: 15
Excellent choice of song and great personality, he just didn’t nail it. I didn’t think it was as bad as Randy said, though.

Blake Lewis, “Somewhere Only We Know”: 17
A 5 in both personality and song choice led to this score. He missed some transitions and he needed to get more into it; but it was a great choice.

Sanjaya Malakar, “Knocks Me Off My Feet”: 14
Sanjaya, you’ve got a great voice, so please use it!

Chris Sligh, “Typical”: 19
Unfortunately, Chris became the first victim of the overpowering band, which probably caused him to get off rhythm, but I thought it was a good performance. It was the first time I’ve disagreed with Simon all night. And I think he was genuinely mad about Chris’ comments; but he didn’t need to insult Chris’ weight.

Jared Cotter, “Back at One”: 14
Here’s one of those songs that should be stricken from the show. I did give Jared an extra point for nailing the falsetto, though.

A.J. Tabaldo, “Never Too Much”: 13
It was just too nasal for me and the words didn’t really come through very well. He’s got an interesting tone to his voice, though.

Phil Stacey, “I Could Not Ask For More”: 18
When is this guy going to learn how to start a song? He’s got an incredible voice once he gets past the beginning.

So, who’s going home? With so many of the performances being so mediocre, it’s a close one. However, I think after a bad Hollywood round and a mediocre performance tonight, America is done with Sundance. As for the other trip home, I’d give it to Rudy, just because his performance came off so cheesy. Though I scored Chris Richardson the lowest, I think he’ll make it through and I hope Sanjaya survives so we can see him really sing.

It may be easier to pick the people who are definitely not going home and that’s Blake, Chris Sligh and Phil.

So what did you think? Just post a comment and get this discussion started.

And by the way, if you didn’t get Chris’ Teletubbies comment to Simon, it was indeed Simon who signed the Teletubbies to a record deal. He signed the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers too…

Remember, the girls hit the stage for two hours tomorrow night beginning at 8. Let’s hope they decide to actually show up…

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Thursday, February 15, 2007

Meet Your Top 12 Girls!

Now meet the 12 girls that will be performing beginning Wednesday night at 8 (also two hours)...

Alaina Alexander (24) – Currently lives in West Hollywood, CA, and has been singing all her life. Her favorite artist is Mariah Carey. She has been pursuing a career in music but almost gave up her dream until she made it on American Idol.

Antonella Barba (20) – From Point Pleasant, NJ, Barba attends Catholic University in Washington, DC, pursuing an architecture degree. She began singing in sixth grade and once toured with the Monmouth Conservatory of Music in England.


Melinda Doolittle (29) – Currently lives in Brentwood, TN. Doolittle is a graduate of Belmont University in Nashville and has a bachelor’s degree in Commercial Music. She is a backup singer on stage and in the studio.

Stephanie Edwards (19) – Currently lives in Savannah, GA. Edwards sang at the famed Apollo Theater when she appeared on It’s Showtime at the Apollo. She has won every singing contest she has ever entered.



Gina Glocksen (22) – Currently lives in Naperville, IL, and works as a dental assistant. Glocksen also performs in a cover band. She tried out for American Idol last season and made it to Day 4 of the Hollywood Round.


Leslie Hunt (24) – Currently lives in Chicago. Hunt is a dog walker who is studying to become a dog trainer. She also plays the piano.




Lakisha Jones (27) – Grew up in Flint, MI, and began singing at age 5. Gospel is her Jones’ favorite type of music but she has trained formally in classical music.




Amy Krebs (22) – Currently lives in Federal Way, WA. Krebs has been singing since she was a small child and attended the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City. She is fluent in German and lived in Germany for three years.


Haley Scarnato (24) – Currently lives in San Antonio, TX. Scarnato, who recently became engaged, has been performing as a freelance singer since she was 15 years old and considers Celine Dion her hero.



Jordin Sparks (17) – Currently lives in Glendale, AZ. Sparks began singing when she was only 18 months old. She won the “Arizona Idol” contest. Her favorite band is Something Corporate.



Sabrina Sloan (27) – Currently lives in Studio City, CA. Sloan attended the Northwestern University music and theater program and has performed across the country with the touring production of Hairspray.


Nicole Tranquillo (20) – Currently lives in Philadelphia, where she is a vocal major at the University of the Arts. Tranquillo began taking voice lessons when she was 12 years old.
The first results show will air Thursday at 8 p.m., followed by the series finale of "The O.C." at 9 on FOX...

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Meet Your Top 12 Guys!

As promised, here’s a closer look at our 24 finalists, courtesy of FOX and "USA Today"…
First, meet the guys who will perform for you Tuesday night beginning at 8. And remember, we're back to two hours.


Rudy Cardenas (28) – Currently lives in North Hollywood, CA, but grew up in Denver, CO. Cardenas was born in Venezuela and has a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Northern Colorado.

Jared Cotter (25) – Grew up in Kew Gardens, NY, and currently lives in West Orange, NJ. He has a degree in business management from Five Towns College, Long Island.




Sundance Head (28) – Currently lives in Porter, TX, and is the son of Roy Head (who had a No. 1 song in 1965, “Treat Her Right”). His life has been centered around music and he can play five instruments.



Paul Kim (25) – Currently lives in Saratoga, CA, and is working as a pool maintenance technician. He grew up with a love of soul music and enjoys gardening.




Blake Lewis (25) – Currently lives in Bothell, WA, and began “beat boxing” in his senior year of high school. Lewis was a member of a youth choir group that traveled to Europe.



Sanjaya Malakar (17) – Currently lives in Federal Way, WA, and comes from a family of singers. He spent four years in Hawaii performing with the Hawaii Children's Theater.



Chris Richardson (22) – Currently lives in Chesapeake, VA, and is a supervisor at a restaurant. He was born in Belgium into a military family and performs at local clubs.



Nick Pedro (25) – Currently lives in Taunton, MA, and made it to Hollywood last season. Pedro has performed at talent shows and is an account executive.



Brandon Rogers (29) – From North Hollywood, CA, but spent six years in Dallas. Rogers has been singing for as long as he can remember. He works as a voice coach, wedding singer and background singer. His mother is a published songwriter.


Phil Stacey (29) – Currently lives in Jacksonville, FL; however, he grew up in Cincinnati. Stacey has a degree in vocal performance and is a singer in the Navy. He is married with two children.



Chris Sligh (28) – Currently lives in Greenville, SC, and is the son of missionaries. Sligh spent 10 years with his family in Germany. Since attending Bob Jones University, he has traveled and performed with a band.


AJ Tabaldo (22) – Currently lives in Santa Maria, CA, and has been singing since the age of 5. He is a supervisor for a shipping service.
Female singers scheduled to perform Wednesday (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) include:


Next post, we'll look at the girls...




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The Top 24...

So from the tardiness of this post, I guess you figured out that in the fight of “Idol” vs. love, love won out.

Although love did allow me to watch last night’s episode, so thanks, sweetie…

Now we know the identity of the people we will vote on starting next week. But there were a few surprises.

The biggest had to be the elimination of Tami Gosnell. Tuesday night, Simon called her “brilliant”—or at least that’s the way it was edited; and “Entertainment Weekly” had already named her the favorite. So what happened? The show didn’t tell us since we didn’t hear her sing and we didn’t see her conversation with the judges. She just emerged from the room saying, “I didn’t make it.” Hmmm…

Other familiar faces we saw last night that didn’t make it were Anna Kearns, the tallest girl Simon had ever seen; Bernard Williams, the one Paula said was totally off-key (the other contestants were completely shocked at his elimination); Jimmy McNeal, who charmed me with “Cupid;” Thomas Lowe, the only member of the outstanding male group who didn’t make it; and Matthew Buckstein, who was a member of last year’s “Brokenote Cowboys.”

In fact, it seemed like many of the people who made it we had never seen before. It makes you wonder if maybe “Idol” spent so much time with the bad auditions that they sacrificed our ability to get to know the finalists…

Here they are, with what I remember about them:

Sanjaya, who says it’s been rough with his sister not making it…
Melinda Doolittle, the nervous back-up singer…
Brandon Rogers, another back-up singer…
Gina Glockson, the rocker…
Haley Scarnato…
Phil Stacy, who missed his child’s birth to audition…
Chris Sligh, the Jack Osbourne look-alike, and one of my favorites…
Blake Lewis, the beat-boxer
Randy Cardenas, another member of that outstanding guys’ group
Paul Kim, my favorite, although he freaked me out with that whole “I will always be barefoot” thing. And don’t even get me started on his underwear…
Jordin Sparks…
A.J. Tabaldo…
Stephanie Edwards…
Leslie Hunt…
Nick Pedro, the guy who backed out of Hollywood last year…
Alaina Alexander…
Chris Richardson…
Sabrina Sloan…
Lakisha Jones, the super-talented mother who last night Simon said was a “great singer”…
Nicole Tranquillo…
Jared Cotter…
Amy Krebs…
Antonella, whose story we have followed from the beginning with her best friend, Amanda…
Sundance, who wowed them at his audition, but choked in Hollywood. I’m betting that was a split decision with Simon voting no…

I’ll have much more on the top 24 later. In the meantime, feel free to post your comments about the choices, and your early favorites…

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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Hooray for Hollywood!

My favorite part of the “Idol” audition process was tonight—the Hollywood rounds.

If you missed it, here’s the recap…

Those poor, poor giddy girls. Don’t they watch this show?

And just like that, the giddiness is gone as the entire first group of six is sent home. Yikes!

By the way, what was up with that Carrie Underwood commercial that only congratulated her for one Grammy? Is that because Best New Artist is more mainstream?

Okay, back to the show as we catch up with some of the people we met during the auditions…

Perla, the Shakira clone, makes it to the next round, but Simon warns her that right now she’s “personality over talent.” Also making it through is 16-year-old country girl Baylie.

Not making it were Rachel, the Army reservist; Ashlyn, who got a second audition and whose arrest was recently revealed; Sarah, the Buckeye who snuck away from home; and Porcelyn, who trained non-stop for the auditions.

There was one bit of drama as Nicole changed her song to please her mom and then blew it. Her mom tried to stick up for her, but Simon wouldn’t have it and left the table.

56 of the 114 girls were sent home…

Now, it’s the guys’ turn and 34 of them make it through. Among them are Brian and Nick, the second chance guys; Blake, the beat-boxer; Matt, who said he received no family support (What is wrong with his mom?); Phil, who missed his baby’s birth; Fidel Castro look-alike, Sean; Sundance and Chris, the Jack Osbourne look-alike.

U.S.S. Ronald Reagan Idol Jarrod did not make it…

So we move on to the group round. If you’ve forgotten, this is when the contestants join a group of other contestants (of their choosing) and pick a song to sing together…

Among the contestants is Matt Buckstein, who you may remember from last year’s “Brokeback Idol” group that sang at last year’s finale.

And it’s no big surprise that best friends Amanda and Antonella are fighting and poor Baylie is stuck in the middle. Tired of rehearsing, Amanda runs off to flirt with some of the guys. See, this is why I love Hollywood! I’d like to see an hour of just group night!

Before the group performances begin, Simon warns the contestants not to forget the words. Fat chance of that happening…

The first word victim is Matt and no surprise that his mom is a little rude when he breaks the news to her. Perla is the next victim, not because she forgot her words, but because she couldn’t sing them.

Chris’ group is exceptional on “How Deep Is Your Love,” featuring Blake on the beat box. They all go through.

Robyn Troup goes through. Yes, the same Robyn Troup who sang with Justin Timberlake at the Grammys Sunday (I presume she does not make it to the top 40.).

Sundance goes through, but Simon tells Paula she was being generous.

When Baylie, Antonella and Amanda take the stage, Baylie forgets all of her words and Amanda has to help her. But then Amanda forgets some of hers. But it’s only Baylie who gets sent home. Of course the flirt gets through. It’s just like Corey Clark in season two.

36 are gone, including Sean, who we didn’t hear sing…

56 are left and the judges whittle it down to 40. Now it’s time for the three room trick, as the judges go from room to room to give good news or bad news to everyone in the room.

In room one is Chris and my guy Paul. They’re through. In room two is Antonella, but no Amanda. They’re through. Room three had heard two rooms celebrating, so they know they’re out.

Sanjaya makes it, but his sister doesn’t and he is devastated. Amanda, who did not make it, says she’s proud of Antonella.

And the show is over. I’m sorry but that was just too short. We want more Hollywood next year!!!

Tomorrow is the high drama of the elevator ride and the lonely chair in the big room with the judges as we learn the top 24—12 guys and 12 girls. It starts at 9, so get your Valentine’s Day dinner in early…

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Wednesday, February 7, 2007

"The Best of the Rest"

Here we are, ladies and gentlemen. The final audition show of the year. WOO-HOO!

And although this episode was pretty much pointless, I still have a few thoughts…

Why did Paula change her mind about Crista (the interesting dresser)?...

About Paul (“If I Ever Fall In Love”): Holy crap! Great audition song too…

Thank you, Paula, for pointing out Ashley’s (“Angel”) makeup problem. I was just getting ready to write that. I didn’t think her voice was all that great, though. Ebony (“I Believe In You and Me”) will go far…

I can honestly say that I’ve never heard a contestant sing “Making Love Out of Nothing At All”…

“Chantilly Lace”?! Yeah, okay…

I think we’ll see a lot of Lakisha (“Think”) too. Did Ryan say we would keep track of both her and her daughter in Hollywood? Hmmm…

Okay, that preview of next week just made me wish the Hollywood rounds were more than two episodes…

The real fun starts Tuesday at 8 p.m. on FOX…

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Tuesday, February 6, 2007

"Other door..."

So instead of giving us an extra two hours of the Hollywood rounds, “Idol” gave us an hour-long bore fest tonight and a clip show tomorrow. Thank goodness the auditions are almost over…

Here are my thoughts on “San Antone-Deaf” or as I’ve called this post, “Other Door”…

What was that look on Paula’s face when Haley (“I Can’t Make You Love Me”) was singing? Did it freak Haley out when Paula said she was sexy?...

I would look for Baylie (“Stronger”) to go far…

At first I thought that a segment on “the other door” was stretching it a little, but it was actually funny. Let’s get that fixed for next year, okay?...

Sorry, I’m with Randy. William (“Amazing Grace”) was funny. But did you see the shock on Randy’s face when William’s cousin started singing? I thought for sure he’d be bad. Nice answer to Simon’s boredom with “Let’s Get It On”…

Sandy (“Black Velvet”) was awesome (awesomely bad, I mean)! I’ve never heard those lyrics before…

Kudos to Simon for fighting for Ashley. She had a great voice and deserved to move on. I’m glad she was still around so they could bring her back in…

Last week’s Los Angeles show got a lot of criticism for not showing us enough good singers. It was nice to see that remedied in this one…

I really liked Jimmy’s choice of “Cupid” for his audition song. He was cool…

Don’t forget that tomorrow’s show (at 9 p.m.) is “The Best of the Rest”—which is basically the same show we’ve been getting, there’ll just be more than one city in the hour.

And if you’re thinking that “Idol” is milking this audition thing for too much, I couldn’t agree more…

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Wednesday, January 31, 2007

"Hollyweird"

So “Hollyweird” did live up to its nickname, but the episode also produced one of the show’s all-time sweetest moments…

And yes, I know it was technically L.A., but that didn't sound as cool...

My thoughts…

Did you see how scared Olivia Newton-John was by Martik, the panther? Maybe that was why she was so easy on him…

Was Marianna trying to be Cher or Shakira? She actually had a voice if she knew what to do with it. I wonder what her mom sounded like if she thought Marianna was good? And Simon and Randy checking the mom out? That was wrong…but funny…

I think Olivia wants to go home now…

Was that our friend Ashanti in that “won’t take no for an answer” montage or did she just go to the same drama school as Ashanti?...

I didn’t think Elena (“I’m Feelin’ Good”) had that good of a voice, so I guess Simon saw something else…

Does Phuong really think she looks like Taylor Hicks?...

And does Olivia tell everyone “You did well”? Stop being so nice!...

Where did that gorgeous acoustic version of “Do I Make You Proud” come from?...

What a great song choice by Brandon (“Always On My Mind”)! Simple melody, sweet lyrics—that’s how it’s done…

Sorry, I’m with Paula. Sherman’s song for his wife was one of the sweetest moments I’ve ever seen on “Idol.” And he was a good singer! I think that was probably the only reason the screeners let him through or else they’d open the flood gates for tons of people doing the same thing…

Simon says there are four from L.A. who could make the finals. And that was only after day one. Hmmm…

Did Cavett just say she loved the flavor of Darold’s grill? Okay…

Did Eric Mueller (“Fly”) look familiar to anyone else? And I think that’s the first time I’ve ever heard someone sing (or try to sing, in this case) Hilary Duff…

And why didn’t Eric stick around to find out why Simon wanted to talk to him so bad? THAT was funny…

The final audition show is Tuesday at 8 p.m., followed by a clip show on Wednesday at 9 p.m. Then, it’s the Hollywood rounds. Woo hoo!...

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Tuesday, January 30, 2007

"Sweet Home Alabama"

I had another commitment tonight, so as you can see, I’m late with my post.

I would’ve posted sooner, but since I was watching on tape, I had to rewind to hear what Paula considered “totally off key.” This episode will do nothing to quiet the Paula rumors, that’s for sure…

Here are my other thoughts…

I think Simon needs to stop telling people he loves “Unchained Melody.” And I have a feeling we’ll see that “dirt off my shoulder” thing again…

Katie (“A House Is Not a Home”) wasn’t kidding when she said her singing voice was totally different. She’s just a little bit of a drama queen…

Is the show just being edited like this or are they really moving the auditions along this quickly?...

Diana (“Saving All My Love For You”) had a voice, so what was she doing with it?...

What was Paula listening to when she said Bernard (“Rock With You”) was off-key? I thought he was awesome. Simon would’ve been pretty upset if Randy hadn’t have agreed—and me too…

They let a 50-year-old through?...

Congrats to Paula on her save with Jamie Lynn (“Reflection”). I mean, what do you say to someone after that story? She’s this year’s Kellie Pickler—so I can’t believe Simon would have said no…

If you hadn’t seen it in the previews, you would never have guessed that Chris (“A Kiss From a Rose”) could actually sing. He’s really cool. But I can’t believe that Simon didn’t get the David Hasselhoff joke (I thought he was more media savvy than that.)…

And what is up with Paula?...

Day 2 without Paula? There goes all the fun…

So what would Simon have said to Victoria (“Raise Me Up”) if her mother hadn’t have been there?...

Nichole’s (“Something to Talk About”) mom told her she had no talent? Yeah, okay. I would’ve let her through…

You can guarantee we’ll see Brandy again—regardless of what she says…

Wow! Ryan got to get in the limo on-camera. He’s moving up in the world…

Don’t forget that tomorrow night’s (Wednesday’s) episode airs at 9 p.m…

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Wednesday, January 24, 2007

"Start spreading the news..."

When the producers said that Carole Bayer Sager was “subdued,” they weren’t kidding. Please! Stop the guest judge madness!

Here are my other thoughts…

I missed them not doing an into last night. It’s just not the same if you don’t hear Ryan say, “This is ‘American Idol’”…

Why did Paula get shoved to the end? That’s just wrong…

So what reality show will Ian (“Gloria”) try out for next to get on TV? “America’s Got Talent”?...

Had Carol never watched the show? It was clear she didn’t know what she was getting into…

I was worried that Sarah (“Call Me”) wouldn’t be able to sing after secretly flying to New York from Ohio. I wonder how her dad really feels. Getting ambushed by Ryan didn’t give him much time to think. Of course, I’m rooting for her because she’s from Ohio…

Is it just me or does Carol look like Joan Collins?...

Carol wasn’t kidding about Ashanti (“Loving You”) being good for Broadway. I think she just did her monologue. Maybe if she’d rehearsed her singing a little more than her acting. I wonder why they didn’t show us what she looked like before?...

So why did Amanda and Antonella sound so bad together? And I agree with the judges that Antonella was better, but I can’t believe she told Amanda that. Maybe she took Simon’s advice after all. They’ll be a story in Hollywood…

Okay, the thing with William (“Dreamin’”) was pretty mean…

How cute was Jenry (“I’d Give Anything…”)? Yes, Paula, he is “easy on the eyes”…

Okay, new rule. Do not start the auditions without Simon. It’s just not as fun…

I wonder what Simon would have said about Nakia (“Dancing in the Streets”)? If she could’ve stayed anywhere near the tune on that second one, she would’ve made it…

Why in the world is “Dreamin’” so popular this year?...

And suddenly Carol comes alive with Sarah! “I could be the only American Idol that doesn’t sing”? What was that girl smoking? She should be glad Simon wasn’t there…

So did Simon really have a hangover and that’s why he wasn’t there?...

How old was that “New Yor, New Yor” guy?...

The “American Idol” soldier? Well, Simon enjoyed it, until she wanted to hug him. I would’ve thought that he would’ve liked that…

I know that name thing was edited together, but the sudden appearance of Olivia Newton-John was a little weird…

I was wondering when the Simon-Paula lovefest would end. I would’ve liked to have heard Christopher sing another song…

Why did Randy have Rachel sing another song? I liked the Jeff Buckley song. But I have a feeling we have another Mikalah on our hands…

What was that scary Dorothy person?...

Simon thinks Christopher (“A Song For You”) could surprise. I think he sees something…

Nicholas’ story is a perfect example of why I love the Hollywood rounds. I wish they would give them more time. You can see that Paula’s glad he’s back. He will be a HUGE story in Hollywood…

I think they left Isadora until last on purpose. Carole’s reaction was priceless. I think that performance ranks right up there with the “Like A Virgin” guy…

Speaking of which. Tuesday looks very interesting…

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Tuesday, January 23, 2007

"Walkin' In Memphis..."

I think tonight’s episode proved that the auditions are better served in one-hour doses. It was a lot less painful…

Here are my thoughts…

Bringing your own marching band and cheerleaders. That’s quite the clever way to get on TV. But they were right. The audition wasn’t good…

If Christopher hadn’t been so weird, he actually had an okay voice…

Did Sundance just look familiar because we’ve seen him on all the promos, or have we seen him somewhere else before? And when Simon said he’d be surprised if he didn’t make the finals, did he mean the final twelve or the final two? I would’ve held my judgment until I saw him weather a theme night…

And it’s clear that Simon is still not the biggest Taylor fan…

“Too desperate”? Maybe Paula is getting meaner…

They tricked us with Travis. When he said the song was very emotional for him, I thought we were going to get a ballad. And was it just me or did “If you ask me to leave” sound like “If you hack me”?...

Okay, maybe Randy’s getting meaner too. He thinks Danielle will be gone in the first minute? Not with those looks and that whispery voice…

I had to laugh at Christopher pausing for the musical interlude of “Footloose.” But Simon’s comments about his wife leaving him were totally cruel. Notice how Simon tried to make up for it with a compliment…

Loved Paula’s cue to Janita to contain herself…

Wow! Sean (the guy with the Castro beard) was awesome! I was totally stunned. When he hit that high note—Yikes! He’s one of my favorites and I really hope he makes it a ways so we can see his makeover…

Why was Randy making that face when Melissa (“For Once In My Life”) was singing if he thought she was brilliant? She’ll be a story in Hollywood with that stage fright…

What in the world was up with the guy in the flower hat pulling handkerchiefs out of his pants?...

And can I just say that I wish these cell phone companies would make up their minds. First, AT&T Wireless became Cingular, and now Cingular is becoming AT&T. Ryan is going to be confused this season…

I have to admit I was stunned when Phillip opened his mouth, because I couldn’t believe he missed his baby’s birth and he couldn’t even sing. But as Randy would say, he worked it out. They’re right that he doesn’t start well…

I can't believe that not one person (that we saw) attempted "Walking In Memphis." I have yet to hear that song done right on the show...

Remember that tomorrow, the show goes back to two hours (the last two hour audition show) beginning at 8 p.m. on FOX…

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