February 27, 2007

American Idol - Boys Night

American Idol asked the contestants to dedicate their song choices to people they felt had the most influence on their decisions in becoming singers. Before every song, we got to see a short film about whom the song was dedicated and hear a little bit more about the lives of the contestants.

The first singer up was Phil Stacey. He dedicated his song to the Navy Band South East. In his film, they showed plenty of photos of him in his navy uniform. I personally dislike when military personnel show up in their uniforms. I find it manipulative. Anyway, he chose "I Ain't Missin' You At All" by John Waite. The song was upbeat and for the most part he sang it in tune. I personally didn't like all the vocal aerobics he pulled out at the end of the song. Randy started his critique with three yo's which is always a good sign that he liked the performance. He said he showed his power. Paula loved his tone. Simon said he wasn't jumping out of his chair. He thought it was a bit unoriginal and that he wasn't hearing anything unique. But he concedes that Phil will most likely be back nest week.
Before the first commercial break, Seacrest conducted some interviews behind the scenes in the area where the contestants sit on red couches covered in Coca Cola upholstery waiting to sing. He asked Sundance Head what kind of feedback he'd received since last week's performance. He replied that he was told to stop singing so crappy. Then he spoke to someone else but there answer was so boring, I didn't even bother to write down who it was or what he said.

Jared "Eyebrows" Cotter was up next. He's the local boy from my hometown of Queens. And I wasn't really too optimistic about his performance because I don't really like him that much. He told Ryan just before they ran his little bio that he was going to be more adventurous this week with his song choice by picking a Marvin Gaye song and that he was channeling Marvin through his suit. He dedicated his song to his parents. While he's singing, I kept thinking how yucky it was to watch him sing the phrase "Let's Get It On" over and over and over again and he kept doing these weird affected gestures. I particularly disliked the final gesture when he dragged his hand down his face. His last notes were complete mess. Randy kind of liked it. Paula blushed and said that he pushed the song too hard. Simon said he was glad that Jared made an attempt but the performance reminded him of something he might have heard on The Love Boat.

aj_tabaldoAJ Tabaldo dedicated his song to his mom and dad. I wasn't familiar with the song he chose and I thought he sang out of tune and that his performance was boring. He butchered the last note of the song. Randy started his critique with a "What's Up AJ" which usually leads to a mediocre critique. Randy liked it better than last week's performance. Paula said he had a real, real, real, real, real good voice. Simon thought he was nearly very good. I personally wouldn't mind if he went home on Thursday night.

sanjaya_malakarSanjaya Malakar dedicated his song to his dead grandfather. He wore the stupidest looking hat I imagine as a style choice that matched Steppin' Out. I thought he sounded really good. He was in tune, his voice was smooth and creamy. But the judges didn't like it. Randy thought it was really weird. Paula noted that he sang in tune but he should pick younger songs. Simon came down hard on him and said it was like a performance a kid gives after dinner at his parents prompting. If America is voting based on the judges' comments he may be going home Thursday night.

chris_slighChris Sligh dedicated his song to his very pretty wife Sarah. His song was called Trouble that had lyrics saying he was saved by a woman. At some point during his song he turned right at her and sang his heart out. It was good and an improvement over last week's performance. Randy liked it better than last week saying his song choice helped showcase his voice. Paula liked it and told him to watch his pitch. Simon thought it was very good but that there was still room for improvement. He'll definitely be back next week. His pretty voice was well showcased by his song choice.

nicholas_pedroNick Pedro dedicated his song to his very supportive girlfriend Caitlin. Because he missed Valentine's Day he was using this dedication as a belated valentine. His song? Fever. Why do contestants ever sing this song? It's soooooo boring. Actually, his performance gave me the same icky feeling I got when I watched Jared Cotter sing his weird song. Simon was shown snapping his fingers along with the performance. As far as I'm concerned, Simon had the only good comment. He said that Nick had a good singing voice but completely lacked charisma.

blake_lewisBlake Lewis dedicated his song to his parents. He sang Virtual Insanity by Jamiroquai. He did something very original in the middle when he broke the song down into beatbox and scat. But the beginning of the song sounded almost exactly like Jamiroquai and he kind of messed up on his falsetto in the end. Randy started with Yo, yo Blake which of course meant that he liked the performance. Paula thought it was unique. But Simon agreed with me - that with the exception of the middle section it was a fair to middling performance. But he sure does have stage presence. I like him. I hope he can stick around for a while.

brandon_rogersBrandon Rogers is one of those contestants you really want to root for because his story is interesting. He's been working as a backup singer for years and is taking this opportunity to move up to the front of the microphone. He dedicated his extremely boring song choice to his grandmother. For his boring song selection he chose to sing Time After Time which is actually not a boring song when sung by Cyndi Lauper but in the hands of Brandon Rogers it was a real snooze fest. I guess he sang it well enough, it was just a boring performance. Randy said it didn't do anything for him vocally. Paula uselessly offered that she felt his heart during his performance and Simon didn't buy the performance.

chris_richardsonChris Richardson also dedicated his song to his grandmother. He sang a song I've never heard called Geek in the Pink. The performance was really enjoyable. Randy said "Yo man. Chris is in it to win it" and added that he thought it was hotter than the original. Paula didn't say anything that could be understood by human ears. Simon thought it was the best performance by a mile. I'm hoping that he comes back next week. I'd like to hear what else can do.

sundance_head Sundance Head sang his little heart out and he really needed to because last week he stank really badly. He dedicated his song to his two month old son Levi. He sang Mustang Sally and from the first note you knew that the Sundance Head that we heard in his original audition was back. He opened up his voice this week and finally quit singing through his nose. Wow. Randy said Oh Yeah 3 times and said Welcome back Sundance. Paula said he was awesome. Simon was glad to thave the Sundance back that we fell in love with. But still sees room for improvement.

I'm hoping Jared Cotter and Brandon Rogers go home on Thursday night, but most likely America will send home Sanjaya and AJ Tabaldo.

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