Idol Blogging

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

I thought the judges were pretty harsh tonight. Seems like they’re a bit jaded, or forgetting that they’re judging the first round, not the finals. Overall, not a bad round of performances for these girls’ first time before a massive national audience.

Here’s how I’d rank them:

Lilly Scott
Sang: Fixin’ a Hole
Should Have Sung: I have no complaints.
Performance: Best of the night. Not sure what Simon’s talking about. She has plenty of star power. She’s confident, poised, and has her own sound. Don’t know how far her retro vocals will go with Idol voters, though.

Michelle Delamor
Sang: Fallen
Should Have Sung: Tina Turner’s “Private Dancer”
Performance: I’m not an Alicia Keyes fan, but she was great. Polished and confident. “Too commercial” was a strange criticism from the judges. To come out that strong and seemingly nerve-free this early was an accomplishment.

Katelyn Epperly
Sang: Oh Darlin’
Should Have Sung: This was a great choice.
Performance: Fantastic. Sexy, sultry, terrific stage presence. Kara was right about her knowing her voice, wrong about her look. I thought it fit the song rather well.

Didi Benami
Sang: The Way I Am
Should Have Sung: “What I Am,” by Edie Brickell.
Performance: The judges were way too hard on her. This was a great first performance. Different than the others, and a stripped-down arrangement. The arrangement smartly put lots of focus on her voice, which is pretty unique.

Crystal Bowersox
Sang: Hand in my Pocket
Should Have Sung: Bob Dylan’s “Shelter From the Storm”
Performance: I like Bowersox quite a bit, but this was a little disappointing. Song choice was too predictable. Also, the harmonica’s a nice touch, but if she’s going to play it, she needs to play it correctly. It was off last night. Her terrific voice, phrasing, and inflection overcame both, but I figured she’d have been one of the front runners after the first week. She came up a bit short of that.

Siobhan Magnus
Sang: Wicked Game
Should Have Sung: Pretty good choice.
Performance: Had some doubts when she first came out. Lower register was off key (I think she had a mic problem, too). But recovered really nicely. Strongest finish of the night. But I’m also a big Chris Isaac fan.

Ashley Rodriguez
Sang: Happy
Should Have Sang: John Hiatt’s “Have a Little Faith in Me”
Performance: She was good, if a little boring. She has a very good, but very generic voice. Needs to pick some unconventional songs to stand out. It’ll probably help that she’s hot.

Janell Wheeler
Sang: What About Love
Should Have Sung: Alanah Miles’ “Black Velvet”
Performance: Verses sounded great, but she didn’t have the chops to bring home the big chorus. Both the song and the band got away from her. I like her, though. And like Rodriguez, her looks will help her through if she breaks off a couple weak performances early on.

Katie Stevens
Sang: Feelin’ Good
Should Have Sung: Maybe some Dusty Springfield?
Performance: She’s good. Another contestant the judges were way too hard on. They’re probably right that she needs to go younger and more playful next time around, though.

Paige Miles
Sang: All Right Now
Should Have Sung: I thought the song choice was pleasantly quirky, but she should have slowed it down, or quieted the band for a more stripped-down arrangement.
Performance: Not very memorable. She didn’t enunciate the lyrics well, and her voice was drowned out by the band. Seems like a common problem in the early rounds with people who pick songs with a strong guitar line. Strong finish, though. Still, she may be gone.

Haeley Vaughan
Sang: I Want To Hold Your Hand
Should Have Sung: Dolly Parton’s “Jolene”
Performance: I’ve been perplexed by the judges’ fascination with her up to this point. Is it the novelty of a black teenage girl who wants to be a country star? I find her annoying, and Simon’s description of her last night as a smiling wind-up doll was spot-on. I’m sure she’s a nice kid. I just don’t get the appeal.

Lacey Brown
Sang: Landslide
Should Have Sung: Anything else.
Performance: I think these last two were the only really bad performances. This one was all over the place. The choice to sing parts in duet with a male backup singer was a terrible one. She also lost her place, and was off-key throughout the song. Too bad. She had some good moments in the preliminary rounds.

Prediction: Brown and Vaughan should be gone. But Vaughan got so much publicity in the early rounds, she’s probably established enough of a fan base to get through. So I think Brown and Miles go home Thursday.

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12 Responses to “Idol Blogging”

  1. #1 |  Rhayader | 

    You should pick a good show to blog Radley. Just sayin’.

  2. #2 |  Nando | 

    I see American iDull is back. Great!

  3. #3 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    Idol has become a bit too cut & paste.

    The Hot Chick Who Can Sing Enough to Stick Around: Michelle followed by Katelyn. Ashley fails.

    The Train Wreck: Brown. She might not even show up for results night. Vaughn rides the fence between quirky good and quirky dreadful (like Bjork will be when she’s 50).

    The One Who Stands Out But Is Still Just An Average Musical Talent Compared to Actual Recording Artists: Crystal followed by Didi. Lily fails.

    Young Stuff What Will Get Youth Vote: Katie.

    No reason to wait to hear the guys’ performances:
    Suck: Aaron, Alex, Joe, John, and Tim.
    Good: Casey, Andrew, and Michael.
    Most annoying: Lee
    Fun guy: Tyler

  4. #4 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    And…Ellen DeGeneres sucks.
    “I’m just someone who likes listening to music…” and YOU’RE A JUDGE! Bring more to the table.
    “I don’t know.” Again, YOU’RE A JUDGE!

  5. #5 |  cyto | 

    I disagree about the judging. They may wear the moniker of judge, but after the final 24 is selected, they don’t judge anything. They are commentators at this point. They choose to do the commentary in a mock judging format, but viewer popularity vote is the judge in this contest. And Ellen did have one good moment, when she let Crystal know that she had the senior lesbian vote. And yes, I watch “singing show” because my wife watches it and No, apparently I am not the king of my castle. I also watch “fat people show” and “dance show” for the same reason. At least “dance show” has hot young hard-bodies prancing about in semi-revealing clothes. If you ever find me in a closet hanging from my belt, you’ll know that “fat people show” finally pushed me over the edge.

  6. #6 |  Bryan | 

    Wow Radley. We disagree a lot. I thought in some places, the judges were too easy. I shut my eyes for a few of the songs and they sounded really pitchy. Lots of wrong notes and screeches. I chalked it up to first night jitters, which may be why they went easy on them. That said, the people they were harshest with were some of my favorites.

    I actually really liked Lacy Brown. I thought it was a different take on Landslide. Jessica said the problem was she kept the musical arrangement too much like the original, which she found unnerving. Maybe. But I thought the vocals sounded kinda cool, actually. I think she hit most of the notes she was trying to hit. The whole think just very different than a version that we have heard before, which may have been why everyone has problems with it.

    I also really liked Vaughan. When I heard she was doing I Want To Hold Your Hand, my first thought was oh-no. Its one of the Beatles more dated songs and it had the risk of sounding really cheesy. That said, I thought she did a great job of updating it. It was unique and sounded current. It wasn’t perfect, but thought it was enjoyable and better than many last night.

    My favorites (probably in order) were: Scott, Brown, Benami, Bowersox, Magnus, Epperly, and Vaugh

    Least favorites (worst to least worst): Miles, Rodriguez, Wheeler, Delamor, and Stevens

    Both Delamor and Steven were technically good, but boring as hell. They pretty much sung the song straight, which I am over. I like it when people try to do something different with it, even if they don’t perform quite as well.

  7. #7 |  Andrew Williams | 

    I’d like to fit Simon and Kara for pairs of cement overshoes. But then, I’m just plain evil.

  8. #8 |  Manavee | 

    I vote to keep the Idol blogging. I like it.

    I agree that I felt the judges were a bit overly harsh at times (mostly towards the later part of the show).

    More good than bad:
    1. Bowersox: I hate that song (and it is a predictable choice) but I thought she killed it. I like that her personality doesn’t seem to be an affectation to me….that’s really who she is I think.

    2. Siobhan: I agree she sounded off in the lower register. But I loved the mid and higher notes. She’s another interesting person to me (even if Simon seems bored).

    3. Didi: She was the one I thought the judgest were the most harsh on needlessly. I liked her voice, I liked the arrangement.

    4. Katelyn Epperly: Biggest surprise to me. I didn’t think her voice was that great in the earlier rounds, and that she got through based on her looks alone. But she was very strong today.

    5. MIchelle: Good, but left me a bit unexcited for some reason. I think the judge’s criticism of a bit too professional is a valid one, actually.

    6. Lilly: Good, but didn’t like her as much as you.

    7. Katie: A nice (but not spectacular) voice. The song bored me. I was surprised at how hard the judges were on her, as I feel she will be their chosen one in the future.

    More bad than good:
    8. Haley Vaughn: Off pitch at time, but I do kind of like her voice. I could find her grating on me, but she does seem like a genuinely nice person.

    9. Lacey Brown: Yeah, not so much. Pitchy, bad song choice. She looks a lot older than her age. I smell trouble for her.

    10. Paige Miles: I don’t know why the judges were so complimentary. I thought she was plain bad and seemed to scream the song at times. She was one I felt the judges were too soft.

    11. Janell Wheeler: Awful song choice. No where near the voice to sing it.

    12. Ashley Rodriguez: I thought she was terrible. She is hot, but had no face time beforehand that I can recall, and I think she’s in trouble.

    Deserve to go Home:
    Ashley and Janell

    Will go home:
    Ashley (not good, early performance, no face time, don’t think her hotness will carry her through).
    Lacey Brown (not good, old looking, not a ton of face time; she may egt some sympathy votes though as the judge’s criticism was so blistering).

    Paige I think could also be a contender for home given her early performance, not good, and lack of face time.

  9. #9 |  Meister574 | 

    I really disagree with some of your’s and the judges assesments.

    Lilly Scott
    Sang: Fixin’ a Hole
    Interesting choice. I liked her from the beginning. I think she is one that will take songs and do them in her own style and will take her far.

    Michelle Delamor
    Sang: Fallen
    Good choice for her, but too safe. Not a fan of the song itself. Will take her to the next round, but I have a feeling this one is going to end up being predictable.

    Katelyn Epperly
    Sang: Oh Darlin’
    Good choice. sung well. I like the new look for her. She’ll stick around awhile.

    Didi Benami
    Sang: The Way I Am
    Sounded odd to me. she has a different voice. This is one that song choice will be especially important.

    Crystal Bowersox
    Sang: Hand in my Pocket
    I like her a lot. BUt Simon was right in that if she does not break out of the street corner mold, she will not last long.

    Siobhan Magnus
    Sang: Wicked Game
    Sounded good. beginning a little rough. She is staying.

    Ashley Rodriguez
    Sang: Happy
    Good but totally forgettable. Safe for now.

    Janell Wheeler
    Sang: What About Love
    Again, sang well but forgettable.

    Katie Stevens
    Sang: Feelin’ Good
    I called this girl to be in the top 5 from the very beginning. SHe has a great voice. Not a good song choice of her but not for the reasons the judges are saying. I cannot stand it when they say “you sound too old”. I agree that it is weird when a 17 year old sings something raunchy. But I do not think that a young person should only sing “young” songs. It seems they want to put her is a pop pricess mold. She is so much better than that.

    Paige Miles
    Sang: All Right Now
    Quirky choice, but also forgettable. I have no idea why Simon says she has the best voice. Completely disagree. I think she is in danger of going.

    Haeley Vaughan
    Sang: I Wanna Hold Your Hand
    I’ve been rooting for her. But she just has not been able to deliver. She is also in danger of going.

    Lacey Brown
    Sang: Landslide
    I loved this perfromance. I just do not get what your problem or the judges problem was with this. She was totally forgettable until this. I thnk she sticks around and will suprise everyone by how many votes she gets.

    Simon’s predictions about being the girls year is dead wrong. They guys are way stronger. Guys night will be a hell of a lot better.

  10. #10 |  pierre | 

    I have never seen the show… however it seems like almost every bar around here has an pool going on betting on the winners.

    They could find a way to gamble on anything in Wisconsin.

  11. #11 |  Elliot | 

    My picks differed quite a bit from yours, particularly Katie Stevens.

  12. #12 |  Johnny Longtorso | 

    I’m just glad the tyranny of Danny Gokey is over.