Thursday, February 28, 2013

Las Vegas Part 4: Remaining 10 Men Perform

Welcome back. Tonight is the final night in Las Vegas. The Final 10 men will perform tonight with 5 of them moving onto the Top 20, and 5 eliminated. As an FYI, next week's Top 20 begins on Tuesday March 5th. But that's next week, tonight hopefully the men will step it up more than their counterparts did last time out, so let's get started:

Sudden Death Performances

1. Mathenee Treco- We saw Mathenee a little bit last year, and a little bit last year, he's hoping to get further. He comes off a little smug while performing, but that might just be his personality. He sings Elvis Presley's "A Little Less Conversation", but he changes it completely different than the original. I like his energy on stage but the voice is hit or miss.
Keith=Has a huge vocal range. Shouldn't underestimate the power of his voice, because sometimes he does so much he loses the connection.
Nicki=Felt like he was trying to please the judges. Didn't feel current, and sounded cheesy and karaoke.
Randy=The song choice was very wrong. Doesn't know what artist he is gonna be.
Mariah=Is a real genuine person, but felt a disconnect between the song and performance.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Yep. He has some power, but it was like Nicki said, "cheesy".

2. Gurpreet Singh-We saw Gurpreet a few times over the course of season thus far, but his most notable performance was his group performance where he and the rest of his group forgot all the words and was just a mess, yet they all went through. Tonight he is singing James Morrison's "Nothing Ever Hurt Like You". It was a mess tonight. He was under the pitch, then almost inaudible at other points. The band just overtook him. The last note was decent but couldn't save the very messiness of the performance.  
Keith=Really likes his voice. His voice is better with the acoustic guitar. Didn't the like the song choice.
Nicki=Bad song choice, should have brought his guitar. Today wasn't the day to take a big risk. Hell no!
Randy="Dude, dawg, I mean really?" That was terrible.
Mariah=Slightly disappointed because didn't hear his softer voice.
Do The Judges & I Agree? For sure. He was brutal. He messed up by taking a huge risk and changing himself up too much.

3. Vincent Powell- We learn that he is/was a back-up singer from such notable artists like Whitney Houston. Vincent decides to sing Lenny Williams' "Cause I Love You". I don't really know this song, nor artist, but Vincent sounded good. He did a ton with the song. He put everything he had, energy wise and power. He did deep voice, he did falsetto, he did short notes, he did long notes, he threw in everything but the kitchen sink. I like him. Don't love him, but like him. Keith, Randy & Mariah give him a standing ovation.  
Keith=Loved it, just loved it.
Nicki= Usually comes off old fashion, but today he was a sexy old fashion. Good vocal.
Randy=The started now has started. A real complete package. Has a current vibe. In it to win it.
Mariah="All I can say is, Finally".
Do The Judges & I Agree? They love him way more than me. I don't get Mariah's comments, I am sure it is positive though. He was really good though.

4. Nick Boddington- Last year Nick got eliminated at the Las Vegas round. This year he is singing James Morrison's "Say Something Now". This James Morrison song actually fits Nick's voice, opposed to when Gurpreet tried the same artist. Nick is a very Jason Mraz kind of singer. Very pleasant and easy to listen to. He isn't gonna blow your house down, but he is very solid.  
Keith= The timber in his voice is what is nice to love. Very easy to listen to. Didn't feel the connection.
Nicki=Loves the warmth in his voice, doesn't seem to try too hard. Tonight wasn't a 10, but it wasn't bad. Wasn't his best.
Randy= Not a great song choice. Needed more moments from him. Didn't even have one.
Mariah=Thinks he is very consistent. Doesn't like the song choice, didn't feel him connected to the song or performance.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Pretty much. They didn't like the song choice, but he has a nice voice that is easy to listen to.

5. Josh Holiday-In a gutsy move Josh decides to do his own original. He plays the piano for a good portion of the song and then he gets up. I actually like the song, I think it's called "Better With You", because he said about 20 times during the song, if it's not called "Better With You" it should be. Josh has a nice voice and now we know he is a good writer as well.  
Keith=Well done on the original song. But wishes that he would cut loose, it was almost too controlled.
Nicki=Wanted him to stay on the piano, thought he was trying to please the judges too much.
Randy=Liked the song and the arrangements. Wasn't wowed by it.
Mariah=Loves that he is a singer/songwriter. Would have loved to see him stay at the piano.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Yup. He is a good writer, and his voice is decent. Nothing stellar from Josh.

6. David Oliver Willis-Tonight singing "Fever". He really changes the original up, especially since he is playing his guitar with it. I like David's voice. It's incredible clear and has a nice tone. He isn't the most exciting performer, but I really enjoyed the whole thing. If he makes it through I would be curious about him changing it up even more.  
Keith=At the end of the song their was a moment. Wasn't the right song choice, but still really good.
Nicki=Felt like he went up there just to perform. Basically it was pretty stiff. Wasn't current artist.
Randy=The song choice made him boring, but kinda liked that he is so different.
Mariah=The crowd seemed to love it, but liked past performances better.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Not really. I liked him more than the judges.

7. Bryant Tadeo-He is super proud of his heritage and coming from Hawaii, so to honor that he is singing "New York State of Mind". I liked the control in his voice and his tone. I wish he pushed himself even further with the song.  
Keith=Beautiful voice and good song choice. Made a connection to the audience.
Nicki=Loved that last note, with the falsetto and riff. Didn't like anything else but the last note.
Randy=Loved the beginning, but didn't feel it went anywhere. Never just went there.
Mariah=Sounded professional, and his tone of voice is beautiful. Had a couple moments that he went lost.  
Do The Judges & I Agree? Yea. He didn't really go that far with the song. He has a nice tone and has talent but it didn't go really anywhere.

8. Burnell Taylor-He said that since his initial audition round he lost 40 pounds. That's pretty impressive. He looked fine before, but he does look even better. He sings John Legend's "This Time". You can hear some of the John Legend inflections in his voice. I wish Burnell sang more like himself than sounding like the original artist, but it doesn't mean he didn't sound really good. His hand motions were pretty sporadic and all over the place, but his voice was very controlled. Nicki gives him a standing ovation.  
Keith= Liked that performance. There were a few critiquey things but his singing style was very original. Connected from beginning to end.
Nicki= Would pay to see him sing. Thinks he was the best by far tonight.
Randy= Doesn't know if it was his best performance, but he was really good and loved that he put his own spin on it.
Mariah= Thinks his first audition was so special, and although this was fantastic, that was just intense.  
Do The Judges & I Agree? Yep. They loved him maybe a bit more in the past, but he was still really strong tonight.

9. Lazaro Abros-We saw a lot of Lazaro thus far this season. His story is that he has a very strong stammer, but it disappears when he sings. He decides to sing Keith Urban's "Tonight I Wanna Cry". Given that Lazaro is more R&B and this was originally a country song he does a nice job in changing it up. I've always liked Lazaro's voice but I never was blown away, I am still not blown away, but I can see why he has a ton of fans already. The way he is able to overcome his stammer while he sing is just incredible.  
Keith=Beautiful song. Has a great song. Wasn't the best song choice. Thought the song was a little ahead of him the whole time. Despite that he has a spirit that burns through his vocal.
Nicki= Always gives Lazaro. Just is being himself. Played it safe in a good way.
Randy=Wasn't the best song choice. Sometimes he gets nervous, but he just needs to relax, because he has a great voice.
Mariah=Knows he has a stronger vocal than what he showed. Proud that he got through something that isn't easy.  
Do The Judges & I Agree? We do. It wasn't the best song choice, but his voice is still really good.

10. Cortez Shaw- We have seen Cortez be very hit or miss throughout this competition. Tonight he is singing David Guetta's "Titanium". I like the version that he is singing because it gave him a chance to really have his voice heard, but I wouldn't have him minded going a bit more up-tempo rather than ballad. At the end the crowd thought he was done, but he had one last note, and it was a really really good one.
Keith=Really bold and brave move. Not necessarily a compliment. Has the range but there were some points that really went awry. A lot of inconsistency in the performance.
Nicki=Liked him a lot tonight. Sexy.
Randy= Range was surprising. There were some pitch things, but that last note at the end was crazy. A fan.
Mariah=Loved the arrangement. Thinks he made some very good choices tonight.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Mixed. Keith agrees that it wasn't the best song choice because it exposes some weakness, but Nicki and Mariah loved him despite showing inconsistencies.


Eliminated=Gupreet Singh, Bryant Tadeo, David Oliver Willis, Josh Holliday, Mathanee Treco

Top 20=Vincent Powell, Burnell Taylor, Nick Boddington, Lazaro Abros, Cortez Shaw

Judges Decide Who Stays/Who Goes

David Oliver Willis=Eliminated
Bryant Tadeo=Eliminated
Vincent Powell=Top 20
Mathanee Treco=Eliminated
Lazaro Abros= Top 20
Cortez Shaw=Top 20
Josh Holiday=Eliminated
Burnell Taylor=Top 20
Gupreet Singh=Eliminated
Nick Boddington=Top 20
Final Thoughts

* Well our Top 10 guys are now complete. Check back next week to see where we rank the Top 10 men and Top 10 females remaining. I wasn't truly blown away by anyone tonight. I almost felt like if they were just not brutal or had super off moments tonight they were getting through. I have yet to really get fully engrossed by any of the guys. Curtis was good, Lazaro was good, Devin is pretty good. So there have have been hints of it, but they just aren't strong this season, thus far. Anything can change I guess, but so far it's been very middle of the line or below the line.

*I love that when Mariah is talking either to Ryan or the contestants that Nicki either turns her head or is rolling her eyes, and I love that when Nicki is speaking that Mariah just has no expression and just looks straight ahead. These 2 despise each other, but if this is how it's gonna be then that's ok, because it's highly entertaining, especially when you see Nicki just not able to take anything that Mariah says seriously.

*They didn't really leave any suspense at the end with leaving Gurpeet and Nick as the last 2 with only 1 spot left. Sure they sang the same artist James Morrison, but Gurpreet was brutal and Nick was solid.

That's it. We now know our Top 20. A mixed bag for sure. Next Monday we will present our list of Top 10 Males and Top 10 Females. Then Next Tuesday begins the Live Top 20 round with the Top 10 females performing. Followed by Wednesday with the Top 10 men, and Thursday with the results show of the complete Top 10. So lots going on next week. Have a great weekend, we'll see you here on Monday so until then, see ya!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Las Vegas Part 3: Remaining 10 Women Perform

Welcome back! This is the last week of American Idol without being Live, so that's something. Last week 5 Men and 5 Women were selected to join the Top 20, the rest will be chosen over the course of the next 2 nights. Tonight the women will follow the same format as last week, 5 women will be chosen by the judges to move on to the Top 20, and 5 women will be eliminated. So let's get to it:

Sudden Death Performances 

1. Melinda Ademi-We learn that we have seen Melinda in 2010, she was eliminated after Las Vegas. She hopes to change that this time. We saw her sing Jessie J's "Price Tag" during Hollywood, well she goes for another Jessie J song, this time "Nobody's Perfect". I think I enjoyed her Hollywood performance better than this one, but it was still pretty good. She was always in tune and she had fun, so that's something.
Keith=Really loved the performance. Nerves tried to get through, but she got in the zone. Has a lot of potential and raw talent.
Nicki=Felt a little less connected than when Angela Miller did the same song last week. Liked it but didn't love it.
Randy=It was okay, but not enough big moments. Might be in a little trouble tonight.
Mariah=The nerves got to her and made her voice waver.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Pretty much. She sounded better in the past, but still good.

2.Candice Glover-By far she is one of, if not the front runner in this competition, so she has a lot of pressure on her. She sings "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman". No one will top when Kelly Clarkson sang this song in Season 1 of Idol, but Candice does a great job. She's in another league than so many of these other contestants, men and women. That last note she hit was so powerful and beautiful. Keith gives her a standing ovation. Well deserved.
Keith=Great song choice, so beautiful. The way she sings is just natural.
Nicki=Born to do this. Boggles her brain that she didn't make it past Vegas last season. Her confidence sets her apart.
Randy=A really good job, not her best, but still really good. Keep doing things that only you can do.
Mariah=A bonafide singer. Nice key change and arrangement of the song.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Absolutely. She is gonna sail right through, no doubt.

3. Juliana Chahayed-We really haven't seen or heard much from Juliana. She decides to play the acoustic guitar for her performance of Demi Lovato's "Skycraper". I loved the stripped down version of the song, but there were parts of the song that I couldn't fully understand her, like her words were jumbled together. I feel she needs to enunciate her words a bit better. Her voice quality is solid, but it almost was too slow.
Keith=Struggled with pitch in place, but is understandable given the nerves. Has a purity of her tone.
Nicki=Has a signature sound to her voice. Sings very timid, but it may not work with some of the bigger voices and personalities in the competition.
Randy=Had a lot of honesty in her delivery. Gave everything she had. Good performance.
Mariah=Has an angelic quality coming from her. Has a lot of vulnerability and it's a beautiful thing. 
Do The Judges & I Agree? Sorta. They thought she did a much better job than I did. But then again, I never heard Juliana before, so they already know her voice, this was my first real chance at hearing her.

4. Jett Hermano-We saw Jett in a group number, but we didn't actually hear her. Tonight she is singing a stripped down version of Rihanna's "Only Girl(In The World)". She keeps it simple, she just is sitting and playing the piano, with a very soft drum accompaniment. I like her voice. It doesn't blow me away, but I can see why they have kept Jett around, because she is a really nice singer.
Keith=Loved the unique arrangement of the song. Made the song her own.
Nicki=I liked the arrangement. Never really climaxed to anything.
Randy=Thought it was gonna go further than it did. Wanted her to push herself further.
Mariah=Not exactly sure what her place is, but is intrigued by her. Not sure where it will take her.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Pretty much. They weren't blown away by her, but she has talent.

5. Cristabel Clack-I liked Cristabel in her audition, then we saw her involved in a bit of a messy group performance, but she survived it to sing Alicia Keys' "No One". She starts off singing the song kind of slowed down, then she basically does Alicia Keys' version. I like Cristabel's voice. She might have done a little too much with it, but Alicia Keys does a lot of things in her songs. I definitely enjoyed past performances better, but it doesn't take away that Cristabel's voice is really good.  Randy gives her a standing ovation.
Keith=Loves her voice, loves the soul in it. Good song choice. Crazy potential.
Nicki=Liked the song choice, like her rasp, but today it got a little out of control.
Randy=Totally on point. Love the raspiness of her voice. Allowed herself the freedom to just let it go.
Mariah=Loves her past performance better, but still keep doing what she is doing.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Randy loved her more than anyone, but everyone agrees that she is a really good singer.

6. Aubrey Cleland-Tonight Aubrey is singing Beyonce's "Sweet Dreams". She is no Beyonce that is for sure, but she is okay. She couldn't really hit the notes that we all know Beyonce can hit, it was just a middle of the line kind of performance.
Keith=Did her own thing. Has great poise and great fire in her voice.
Nicki=Obsessed with you. Looks and sounds like a current artist. Sounds really pretty, and has rich texture.
Randy=Very great commercial artist. Not a perfect song choice, but she is the full package.
Mariah=Limitless. Hopes to continue on with the show. 
Do The Judges & I Agree? Um, no. I thought she was just okay. Maybe the song choice really was the problem, if she chose another song it could be a whole other story.

7. Rachel Hale-She was the last woman chosen in the Hollywood rounds. Tonight Rachel is singing Grace Potter & The Nocturnals' "Nothing But The Water".  I like Rachel's voice a lot. I really do. She is a good performer. I think she didn't every note that she intended to hit. The high notes went a little flat, and got pitchy. But overall pretty decent.
Keith=Loved the song choice, but didn't perform it well enough. Has a great spirit.
Nicki=Has gotten a ton of confidence. Really came alive.
Randy=Was happy to hear her choose a high tempo song. Loved seeing this side of her. Fearless.
Mariah=Has a smile that is hard to forget. Heard her better in other songs.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Yep. She had a few rocky moments, but they love her performance and personality.

8. Breanna Steer-Tonight Breanna is singing Jazmine Sullivan's "Bust Your Windows". I like her look and attitude on stage, but her voice didn't do much for me. The song just kind of sat there. This song needs a bit more voice and vocal range, but Breanna didn't go there. I wish she did though because her last note was pretty solid.
Keith=Like the whole vibe of the song. Made him believe her.
Nicki=Work, work, work. Perfect song choice. It felt right into her tone. Gave her sexy on a stick.
Randy=Has the whole package. Perfect song choice for her voice. Knows who she is.
Mariah=So glad that the contestants get to choose her own song, because it was perfect. It was amazing.  
Do The Judges & I Agree? Um, nope. I thought she didn't do enough, they thought she did more than enough and then some more. I just didn't hear it, if/when she moves on we'll see what happens.

9. Janelle Arthur-We learn that this is Janelle's 3rd time on Idol. I don't believe she ever got this far. She is singing Lady Antebellum's "Just A Kiss". I like Janelle a lot. If we compare the other country girl, Rachel Hale, than Janelle wins, if we compare Janelle to Candice or even Cristabel then she isn't quite there. But, she is still very good.
Keith=Loves the way Lady Antebellum performs it, but because their are 3 people in that group, she is only one person, so it doesn't really go anywhere at times. Didn't show what she can really do.
Nicki=Things fell a little flat. Usually has a silent confidence, but didn't show it tonight. Felt disconnected. Doesn't need to overdo it, she's a star.
Randy=Favorite country singer in this competition. Still a fan, despite tonight.
Mariah=Wasn't the best song choice, but still rooting for her.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Yep. It sounds like if Janelle moves on it will be because of her past great performances, not because of tonight, because tonight was a let down.

10. Zoanette Johnson-Don't get me wrong, I think Zoanette is super entertaining, I like her story of persevering from a struggling country, Liberia, but her voice has been crazy, and her performances equaled that and several contestants were eliminated that might have had a shot when Zoanette didn't deliver. Tonight she is singing Lion King's "Circle of Life". Again, Zoanette is very entertaining but her voice was super shaky. She gave everything she could, she has a ton of passion. In all honesty if she went through I wouldn't even care too much. Her performance and energy should count for something. Nicki, Keith and Randy give her a standing ovation. Mariah probably would have but her dress looks incredibly intricate.
Keith=Love that he never knows what she is going to do.
Nicki=Served it. So proud of where she came from and where she is now. Unforgettable, superstar.
Randy=Tonight she showed and proved why she deserves to be here. Her spirit just shines through.
Mariah=So proud and happy for her. Her spirit can't be contained.
Do The Judges & I Agree? Definitely. Her emotion, and spirit almost defies voice. How long this will last is anyone's guess, but for now it's pretty cool.

Eliminated: Melinda Ademi, Jett Hermano, Juliana Chahayed, Rachel Hale, Janelle Arthur

Top 20: Candice Glover, Cristabel Clack, Aubrey Cleland, Breanna Steer, Zoanette Johnson

Judges Decide Who Stays/Who Goes?

Zoanette Johnson= Top 20
Melinda Ademi=Eliminated
Juliana Chahayed=Eliminated
Aubrey Cleland=Top 20
Cristabel Clack=Eliminated
Candice Glover=Top 20
Jett Hermano=Eliminated
Breanna=Top 20
Janelle=Top 20

Final Thoughts

*Tonight was the first night that I didn't really hear what the judges heard on a number of performers, but that's okay. As long as they make sense and don't send someone through because they are entertaining rather than a great singer than that's fine. They did that with Zoanette, I might have preferred Cristabel or Rachel, but I guess something has to be said for performance and energy and entertainment value.

*I am sad that Cristabel and Melinda didn't make it. I would have preffered them from Aubrey and Breanna, but the judges thought something completly different than I did. This is where editing and screen time plays a part. I barely saw Aubrey or Breanna before tonight so I don't have any idea how they usually sound or what their voice can do. We heard Cristabel and Melinda a couple times and they both did a great job, so I take that info with decent performances tonight and I feel like they deserved to move on.

*I give the judges credit for sending though Janelle, despite a rougher night. I think she had a poor song choice, but her voice is still really strong. I think Rachel had a better night than Janelle when comparing the two, but Janelle has had a stronger track record.

A lot of good talent moving on, a lot of good talent going home, solid night. What did you think? Next week we will rank our Top 10 females and Top 10 males, but that's next week.
Tomorrow is the final night of pre-taped performances. So until tomorrow, see ya!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Las Vegas Part 2: 10 of 20 Men Perform

Welcome back. Tonight 10 of the remaining 20 men will perform. Last night was pretty successful with 5 ladies moving on to the Top 20, and 5 other ladies eliminated. The format will remain the same for the men tonight, as well as next week. So without further ado, let's get started:

Sudden Death Performances

1. Paul Jolley-We saw Paul for a brief bit in Hollywood and Nicki yelled at him for not being confident on stage. This time we see Paul singing Keith Urban's "Tonight I Wanna Cry". That's a big chance singing one of the judges' songs. Paul has a very pleasant voice, he gets a little lost during the higher notes, but it's a solid performance. I don't know if he did enough to win over the audience.
Keith=Really appreciates him for signing one of his songs. Has a great voice, but wants him to underestimate the power in his voice, and shouldn't try to overcompansate with some of the bigger notes.
Nicki=Other performances "Wowed" her a lot more. Went into his head too much and didn't feel the raw emotion. Over-performed too much.
Randy=Has potential to have a big power voice in country music. Thinks he has great potential.
Mariah=Thought he was refreshing and loved the flexibility of his voice in this genre.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Half. Nicki and Keith both weren't impressed but all the judges and I agree that he does have a very pleasant voice.

2. Johnny Keyser-We saw a bit more of Johnny last year, and have seen Johnny not do so great this year, yet here he is. Tonight Johnny is singing Jason Mraz's "I Won't Give Up". The first part of the song puts me to sleep, very boring. Once he hits the middle you could hear that he does a very nice voice. This performance didn't really exicte me at all. He is a good looking guy, with a good voice but it doesn't equal winner let alone Top 20 to me.
Keith=It was good. Best he sung. There was an effortless way he sang despite some nervousness.
Nicki=Didn't see any nervousness. Thought he was very relaxed. The vocal isn't the best in the world. Thinks something very sexy about him.
Randy=Doesn't have the greatest voice in this competition. Just thought it was an okay performance. Wasn't enough spots in there that gave him his moment. Thought he played it too safe.
Mariah=Can sense that he wants to be a performer, and loves that he is very sexy and into his masculinity.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Sorta. They liked him little more than I did, but everyone agrees that he won't ever be the best voice in this competition, but he is appealing. 

3. JDA-We only saw a few minutes of JDA in Hollywood, and I love that he calls himself "Fantabulous". He sings Adele's "Rumour Has It". He is going for it while wearing some heels, and some ladies pants but his voice is quite different and enjoyable. He is incredibly theatrical, as he throws himself on the floor and rolls around a little. This dude on this show is just fanatstic, I don't care how far he goes on this show, he is entertaining.
Keith=Thought he was right at home on stage. Loved that he put on a show. Didn't like that he was so choreographed.
Nicki="Work it Girl, Work It". Is a superstar performer. Gave a show tonight. Didn't like his vocal, thought it was a little whiny.
Randy=Thought he was too focused on performance that it lessened his vocal. Didn't feel no originality in his moves.
Mariah=Thought he was so confident. The heels and the whole thing was just fantastic.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Yep. He is super theatrical, and entertaining, but his voice wasn't so great.

4. Kevin Harris-We have not seen Kevin before. He is singing Bryan Adams' "(Everything I Do) I Do It For You". I am very underwhelmed. Me no likey. It didn't do anything, it didn't go anywhere. Given that we have never seen this guy before I wish he did another song and had another performance.
Keith=Thought it was a good song choice. Thinks his range is crazy. Mixed feelings about how he went high at the end of the song. Not sure if worked but gets why he did it.
Nicki=Thinks every choice he made tonight was perfection. Thinks he is relaxed and loved the control. First boy of the evening whose voice was really on point.
Randy=Bored, thought it was karaoke. Thinks he put in the high note at the end for show, but didn't think it worked. Didn't love it.
Mariah=Loved the song, but wish he could have done more with another song choice. Very mixed.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Yep, except Nicki. She heard something way better than the rest of us did.

5. Chris Watson- We have seen Chris, but haven't heard him. He sings Otis Reddings' "Sitting On The Dock of The Bay". He changes the tempo to make it a bit more current. He is confident for sure on stage. He has a lot of charisma as well, but his voice is lacking. Again, I am a bit underwhelmed.
Keith=Thinks his voice wasn't the best, and didn't like the song choice, but loves his confidence.
Nicki=The prettiest man, ever. Wants to marry his vibrato. Didn't like the song choice. Is obsessed with him.
Randy=Love the person and look, but his voice is lacking, he doesn't take the song anywhere. Didn't really show himself, was very bored.
Mariah=Was suprised at the song choice. Loves him as a person, and his charisma, but not best vocal performance.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Yep. His voice is not so great, but his confidence is very good and he has nice charisma.

6. Devin Velez-From the little we have seen of Devin I have enjoyed him. He is singing Beyonce's "Listen". He starts off very shaky, you can tell his nerves. Once he gets to the middle of the song you could hear the talent in his voice. He then sings part of the chorus in Spanish, and I enjoyed that. It wasn't the best I have ever heard him, but given what came before him, he is at the top of the night.
Keith=Walked out and just sang, didn't do anything more than just sing the song, and be in the song.
Nicki=Tonight he did an amazing job at singing the song, and loved that he sang in Spanish. Thought it was a smart choice to do something like that. Has a warmth about him.
Randy=Thought it was amazing. Took his time with it. Loved the arrangement and loved the incorporation of Spanish.
Mariah=Thinks he got into his head at the end and he shouldn't.  Loved that he blended R&B and Spanish together beautifully.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? They do. He was the best of the night thus far. He just came out and sang, and didn't try to be more than he was. 

7. Elijah Liu- Tonight Elijah is singing Bruno Mars' "Talking To The Moon". This was a good song choice, he is singing a very current song, from a very current artist, so he doesn't have to do much to change it up to make it fresh. He reminds me of David Archuletta, but not as good a voice. Just a kid that all the girls like, that is very pleasant and is a nice guy. His voice has to deliver a few more standout moments, but otherwise it  was pretty enjoyable.
Keith=Thought it was a perfect song choice. Thought it was a shaky performance vocally. Likes that he looks like a Pop Star. Loves that he is relevant and now.
Nicki=Thinks he is a super-duper star. Wants to have his babies. Wants to sign him today. Has the most marketable face and voice of all the guys.
Randy=Loves him, but didn't think he had any moments vocally. Wasn't great, but liked him.
Mariah=Liked the control, and his higher voice. Extremely marketable, and loves that he is Mexican and Chinese, loves the combination.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Pretty much. Nicki was waaaaaay more into him than I was or the other judges, but he was still very good.

8. Charlie Askew-I was never incredibly impressed with Charlie, but I always thought he was very quirky. Tonight he is singing Elton John's "Rocket Man". His nerves were showing off from the first moment with his hands and voice shaking, but once he hit the chorus he gained some confidence. At one point he went so high in his register that I couldn't even understand him. Nicki gives him a standing ovation. This kid is adorable. Is he a singer? I'm not so sure.
Keith=It was like if Freddy Mercury had a love child out of Woodstock. Loves his unpredictability, didn't understand the song choice, but it somehow worked.
Nicki=Made the most interesting song choice of the night. His weirdness, and awkwardness excites her. Thought he was fresh, and crazy, and different. Loves him so much.
Randy=Doesn't know what is going on. Loves Charlie and his originality, but thinks it was a bit staged school. Vocal just wasn't there.
Mariah=Lives for the song choice. Thought he brought himself, but loved him before a bit more.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Kinda. They think he is an original, his voice is lacking, but that isn't everything.

9. Jimmy Smith-I guess tonight is pay Keith Urban tribute day with Jimmy choosing his song "Raining on Sunday". I am not entirely familiar with this song, but Jimmy does a nice job with it. His voice was really nice, and it was definitely in tune and had a nice tone to it but I haven't been "Wowed' by Jimmy thus far in this competition, and tonight was the same.
Keith=It's hard to critique someone that just sang your song. Thought he did a really nice job.
Nicki=Thought it was a good vocal, but was a bit bored. Was thinking about others rather than him.
Randy=Thought it was a bit boring, thought it was good but not great.
Mariah=Thought there was a nice quality about him that is great. Thinks there is something that America should be able to see.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Yep. Jimmy has a nice voice, but was boring. 

10. Curtis Finch Jr-This guy is a tricky one. He has a great voice, but he is very theatrical, and he had a few very diva-ish moments in Hollywood, where his personality was very lacking and petty. Tonight he decides to sing Luther Vandross' "Superstar". He again is incredibly theatrical in his movements, but his voice is still high quality. He goes from a deep rich voice to a high falsetto in one breath, so that's impressive.
Keith=Thought it was really beautiful. Thought there were parts that were over-performed.
Nicki=Thinks he takes the competition to another level. Well on his way, it's his time.
Randy=One of the best singers in this competition. Wants to make sure it stays current.
Mariah=Can't begin to critique him. Moved to tears. Wants him to loosen up and just let it go and less perform 
Do The Judges Agree With Me? They do. His voice is great, but he has to perform a little less. Just let it go.

Eliminated=JDA, Kevin Harris, Chris Watson, Jimmy Smith, Paul Jolley

Top 20= Johnny Keyser, Devin Velez, Elijah Liu, Charlie Askew, Curtis Finch Jr.

Judges Decide: Who Stays?/ Who Goes?
Curtis Finch Jr=Top 20 
Jimmy Smith=Eliminated
Kevin Harris= Eliminated
Elijah Liu=Top 20
JDA= Eliminated
Paul Jolley=(Jimmy Iovine helps break the tie-breaker between the judges)-Top 20
Chris Watson=Eliminated
Charlie Askew=Top 20
Johnny Keyser=Eliminated
Devin Velez =Top 20

Final Thoughts

*Tonight was a tough one, especially after a really solid night like last night. There were a few nice moments, but overall the vocal talent was seriously lacking. I kept trying to predict who was gonna move on and who was gonna get eliminated but I could barely do it. It was a boring night as a whole.

*My guess is that if Jimmy Iovine didn't choose Paul Jolley to go further than Johnny Keyser would have went on. I think it was one or the other. They both did about the same, middle of the line kind of job.

*It felt like almost every guy up there was told that there vocals were off, but they were a nice guy and very personable or entertaining. I hate agreeing with Randy, but this show, opposed to X Factor, is about the vocal, and only Devin and Curtis brought that tonight. It was a struggle to pull out 5 great guys tonight. Paul, Charlie and Elijah are good, but should they be one of the remaining Top 10 guys? Don't think so.

*Mariah shouldn't tell Curtis that she can't critique him. This is the time to critique and help him. If he was a seasoned performer with a record contract that doesn't need critiquing then he wouldn't be on this show. Telling Curtis he is un-judgeable at this point is setting Curtis up to get a bigger ego than he already has. Just sayin'. 

Well that's it. Were you as underwhelmed as me? I hope next week picks it up a bit. We will be back next Wednesday to find out the final 5 men getting to the Top 10. So until then, see ya!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Las Vegas Part 1: Top 10 of 20 Women

Welcome back. We are getting pretty close to getting to those live rounds. The format for Las Vegas rounds is as follows:

Tonight:Sudden Death= 10 of the Final 20 Women will perform, 5 will move on to Live Rounds, 5 Will Be Cut
Tomorrow: Sudden Death=10 of the Final 20 Men will perform, 5 will move on to Live Rounds, 5 Will Be Cut
Next Wednesday, February 27:Sudden Death=10 Remaining Men Perform, 5 will Move on to Live Rounds, 5 Will Be cut.
Next Thursday, February 28:Sudden Death= 10 Remaining Women Perform, 5 Will Move On To Live Rounds, 5 Will Be Cut. Top 20 Revealed.

Then we get to Top 20 of Live Rounds. When we get there I will go over the schedule for that. So that means tonight we will see 10 ladies perform, and we will find out right away which 5 move on to the Top 20 and which 5 will be sent home. We have seen a good amount of these contestants, some more prominently than others, some not at all so it should be an interesting night. Let's get to it:

Sudden Death
We see that the women will compete in front of a Live audience. The show isn't live for us, but it's still performing in front of people, and the judges. It also gives the new judges a chance to get comfortable in critiquing the contestants in a certain amount of time in front of an audience.

1. Jenny Beth Willis-Don't believe we ever saw her before, and if we have heard or saw her it was extremely brief. She is a country girl. Her voice is pretty flat. She doesn't really have much stage presence or charisma. She is probably nervous, but it is showing way too much.Her last note was a good one, but not sure if it makes up for her full performance.
Keith=Has mixed feelings about if this is a good song choice, but loves the way she performs.
Nicki=Liked her voice, but didn't come alive until the very end.
Randy=Felt a little jerky. Never got in sync rhythmically with the band. Loved the last note but the rest wasn't.
Mariah=Nice performance, but wanted her to be more dynamic. Wanted the more lower richness of her voice.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Half. Nicki and Randy also believe that despite the last note being great, the rest of her performance was lackluster

2. Tenna Torres- Her name is pronounced "Tina" but spelled a bit differently, just FYI. We remember her as a former participant of Camp Mariah when she was younger.  She was very into her performance, she had the facial expressions and hand gestures going but the song choice was very poor. I think she put ill advised runs in the song, and didn't hit them, and the high notes didn't go anywhere. Mediocre at best.
Keith=Thought it was a beautiful song but the performance needed a ton of control and she had it.
Nicki=Reminded her why she loved Tenna Torres before. She had a ton of control throughout the whole song, and she reminds her of 1980s R&B singers. Didn't like her hair, thinks it ages her.
Randy=Feels that this is the start of the night. Came out controlled and connected with the emotion of the song.
Mariah=Gave every bit of her emotion. Wasn't even trying, just naturally gave it.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Nope. They all heard something I didn't. Given we haven't seen much of Tenna before I don't really know what she usually sounds like, so maybe it was better than she has been in the past, because to me it was boring.

3. Adriana Latonio-Don't remember this girl at all. I feel I would have remembered her if I had seen or heard her before because she did a really great job with "Ain't No Way". I would have loved a little more power, but that last note provided some of the power that I think she has. A ton of potential for this girl. Keith and Randy give her a standing ovation.
Keith=Thinks now the night has started. Channels into all the soul the song requires.
Nicki=Thinks she commands the stage despite her 5 foot nothing stature. Had no fear. Poised and ready to go.
Randy=Has a ton of confidence. She's a pro at 17.
Mariah=Took on a big song, and it turned out great. Loved her interpretation of the song. A+
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Definitely. Never heard this girl before, but won't forget her. I think she just showed America who she is and she didn't disappoint.

4. Brandy Hotard=Another country girl and one that is pretty but also pretty forgettable She looked scared and her voice sounded it. Had some pitchy moments and a little shaky at points as well. Some of her notes hit really nice, but it was just all uneven. I didn't love the song choice.
Keith=Loved that she chose that song, and her voice is really good, but she didn't connect emotionally to it.
Nicki=Didn't connect at all to the song. Thought it was a pageant performance of the song. She was smiling when she was singing "tears and resistance". It didn't make sense and didn't work.
Randy=Has a big voice, but the song didn't tell him enough about what kind of singer and artist she wants to be.
Mariah=Didn't notice if she was smiling or not, but has seen her more emotionally connected before.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Yep. They saw that it didn't work, and it just didn't. She's in trouble.

5.Shubha Vedula-I have liked Shubha's voice in the past, and still love her name. She decides to start her rendition of Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" on the piano, and it sounds pretty great. But then as soon as she leaves the piano and leaves the really stripped down version of the song it all goes a little haywire. She has a lot of fun, and has charisma on stage, and she has a great vocal sound, but the version of the song doesn't do a ton for her altogether. Woulda preferred the super stripped down version.
Keith=Crammed a lot into that performance. Thinks it was confusing,  but still loved her voice.
Nicki=There was way too much going on. Thinks she has a strong voice, but it is a weird mix of Christina Aguliera and the Gagnam Style guy. Very confusing.
Randy=Has a ton of potential. She way overdid the runs. Would have preferred her staying at the piano.
Mariah=Would have loved her staying at the piano because it allowed her to stay a bit restrained and less forced.  
Do The Judges Agree With Me? They all do. They also agree she should have stayed at the piano and that it went a bit crazy once she left the piano. But she still has a nice voice. She is a border line kind of contestant tonight. 

6. Kamaria Ousley=We only saw a bit of Kamaria but I remember her being very strong. Tonight she comes out with an attitude like she knows what she is doing. I don't like her song choice of Kelly Clarkson's "Mr. Know It All". Although it allowed her a chance to get to hit some high notes, I feel there are so many other great songs out there. She could have chosen anything. Anything! The whole performance was a bit too dramatic. She had a lot of sass and it didn't really connect her to the audience.
Keith=Didn't think it was a good song choice. She can really sing, but the song didn't allow her to emotionally connect to the song. Thought it was unnecessarily theatrical.
Nicki=Thought she looked lovely styled, but didn't think the vocal worked at all tonight.
Randy=From the start it just never caught on. It was all over the place. Worst performance from her ever. Nothing redeeming about it.
Mariah=Struggled to hear herself. Thinks she is adorable, but didn't like her song choice.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? They all do. Kamaria had a bad night. Randy went on and on about it, but all the judges pretty much said the same thing as I did. Too bad.

7. Kree Harrison-We saw Kree during the last round of Hollywood and she did a brilliant job. Tonight is basically the same and maybe even more. She is very unassuming. She just wears a regular shirt and some leggings. She let's her voice do the job, no extra anything needed. She knocks this song right out the park. Her last note breaks through and hits perfect. Standing ovation from Keith and Nicki.
Keith=Is a natural born singer. Doesn't over try, has an effortless vulnerability.
Nicki=All the other girls should be afraid of her. Thinks she made love to the song.
Randy=Another natural born singer[editors note=Keith just said the same thing 30 seconds earlier]. Felt that he was at her show.
Mariah=Feels she got lost in the song and it's a beautiful thing to watch. Isn't affected at all, is just organic. Sang the hell out of that song.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? They all do. Kree is top contender and the judges and I all think she is someone to really watch in this competition.

8. Angela Miller-We saw Angela a few times thus far and every time she has been right on the money, especially when she performed her original song. I am not in love with this song choice at all. I don't think it allowed her voice to shine as much as it has in the past, but when she gets to the middle of the song it picks up for sure. Angela's voice saves the performance, because the song itself was just okay.
Keith=Thinks she has a big gift. She does a lot with even a little.
Nicki=Nothing compares to her original song in the last round, so it makes it tough to compete, but she has to try not to compete with it, she should just let it go and don't force anything.
Randy=One of the favorites of the entire competition. She can sing anything. Loves her intrepetations of the lyrics. The real deal.
Mariah=Has limitless potential. Wants the world to hear her original song. Needs to keep writing because it was phenomenal.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Pretty much. They all believe she has had better performances and this one was good, but not as good in the past. She is a lock to move on based on past performances.

9.Isabelle-She got lost in the mix during Hollywood rounds but her voice has been strong every time we heard her. Her voice is very strong, almost a bit too strong tonight. She has some booming moments and not enough soft moments to balance it out. But she was very in tune and her tone was beautiful.
Keith=That performance was a key to the side of the car to all the boys that never asked her out.
Nicki=Looked like a Diva. Sounds and looks very pretty. Shined tonight.
Randy=Loves that she is an inspiration to others. The performance was a little old fashioned. Thought he was at a pageant for a minute.
Mariah=Her vocal sold her, and her heart sold her as well.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Kinda. They liked it even a bit more than I did. Great voice, and one that has some potential.

10. Amber Holcombe=We learn she was cut at Las Vegas rounds last season. So this spot isn't entirely unnatural for her. This performance seemed pretty old fashioned to me. I don't think it allowed her to really to get into it like it should. Her voice quality is incredibly high though. So it is all about song choice. If she chose a better song I probably would have thought she was over the top. Keith, Randy and Mariah give her a standing ovation.
Keith=Makes it hard for everyone else. Made the old timey song timeless.
Nicki=Proud that she came out of her shell this year. Thinks her vocal was A+++, but is unsure if her inner  self will come out and not be as shy, because her voice is top class.
Randy=Feels she doubts herself, but she shouldn't because the vocal was amazing. Made the most important run the best run.
Mariah=Thought it was incredible. Loved her interpretation of that song.
Do The Judges Agree With Me? Sorta. They loved Amber a ton more than I did, but I liked Amber a lot, she just needs to connect a bit more with the audience.

Eliminated=Jenny Beth Willis, Brandy Hotard, Shubha Vedula, Kamaria Ousley, Tenna Torres

Moving On To Top 20=Adriana Latonio, Kree Harrison, Angela Miller, Isabelle, Amber Holcombe

[I feel that Tenna and Isabelle are equals, so that's my toss up]

Judges Decide: Who Stays?/Who Goes?
Jenny Beth Willis=Eliminated
Brandy Hotard= Eliminated
Tenna Torres=Top 20
Kree Harrison=Top 20
Angela Miller=Top 20
Kamaria Ousley=Eliminated
Amber Holcombe=Top 20
Shubha Vedula=Eliminated
Adriana Latonio= Top 20

 Final Thoughts

*I think tonight was pretty successful. I think Kree, Angela and Adriana had great nights. I think Tenna was the weaker of the Top 5, and I think Amber has potential but didn't win me over completely yet. I think Isabelle and Tenna were just as good as each other, and both had off moments, so that was a toss up. I think all in all there were very solid decisions made.

*Mariah is gonna be a tough one. She tends to go on and on a bit, and doesn't give as much feedback as she should. She tells the contestants they are beautiful and asks them how they feel. When we hit Live shows the judges are gonna have to be brief and concise, this might prove difficult for her. I think Nicki proved to be incredibly insightful, and funny, and genuine. I think Keith wasn't as dynamic as he was during the pre-taped stuff, but he was still very good and provided a few nice moments. Randy pretty much repeats what others say, and doesn't offer a substantial amount of feedback. Solid outing by this judging panel as a whole.

*Next week notable female contestants such as Janelle Arthur, Candice Glover, Melinda Edami, Rachel Hale, and Cristabel Clack perform. We will see how it all shakes out then.

That's it. What did you think of the first 5 ladies moving on? I think it was pretty much right on the money. I hope this stays the same for tomorrow with the guys and the rest of the contestants next week. Come on back here tomorrow for the guys performance. So until then, see ya!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Hollywood Week: Part 4

Welcome back. Tonight we will learn the fates of the remaining female contestants and also learn which 20 males from the remaining 28 men left in the competition will move on. Last night showcased a number of great voices and performances, hopefully we will get even more notable and memorable performances tonight as well. So let's get to it:

Solo Performances
We learn that the ladies can either choose a song from the list of pre-chosen songs, or they can sing their own original. 

Group 1  
Angela Miller-Goes with her own original. It's a big risk, but it pays off, her song kicks some major a$$. Her voice is pretty fantastic as well. I'd love to find something wrong, but there's nothing I can really knock. The judges give her a standing ovation.

Candice Glover-She sings "Girl on Fire", and although I pretty much hate Alicia Keys' version, I kinda liked Candice's. I've seen her sing better, but not by much.

Janelle Arthur-This is Janelle's 3rd time on American Idol and her experience for sure helps her out. These first 3 girls are just killing it. This could be the Final 3 in this entire competition and as of this second I really wouldn't mind. Nicki calls Janelle a country superstar.

Zoanette Johnson -I am just completely shocked here, without actually knowing how to play Drums nor knowing what she was doing before her final rehearsal Zoanette basically wings her performance, calls it an "original", and that it was. It's ballsy, it's weird, but given that Nicki Minaj is a judge and some of these other judges are just going with it, this was a performance like no other. It's super crazy. She just screams, and loses her mind. I sorta enjoyed it in a sick sadistic kinda way.

Group 1 Results
Who Moves On? Candice, Angela, Janelle, "Jet"(we didn't hear her) and Zoanette.
Who's Going Home? Girls we don't even see or hear.
Opinion? Any season other than this season, any judges panel other than this judging panel would have sent Zoanette home, but not these guys. I am kinda interested into how crazy she is gonna go.

Group 2
Shubha Vedula-She goes with the Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey duet, her voice fits it pretty well.

Juliana Chahayed- We only saw about 5 seconds of her but she was pretty good. I don't know.

Kez Ban-She performs an original, unfortunetly it's not quite as dynamic as her first original we heard "Azure Sky". We only get about 30 seconds of it and it's not enough to really see what she can do with it. It sounds very low and crackily. Nicki appreciates her artistry despite her off performance.

Group 2 Results
Who Moves On?  Shubha, Juliana (I think, they didn't really announce it, but they were positive about them)
Who Goes Home? Kez Ban
Opinion? It's a mixed bag with Kez Ban leaving. I enjoy her as a person and an artist, but this show isn't for her. Her voice was not as strong as I feel it was during her inital audition and she never really got back to that point. I'll miss her personality for sure, she is a character we don't really don't see. But given that Zoanette Johnson is still in this competition I am sure she will bring plenty of personality for the both of them. So good-bye Kez Ban, it was nice knowing ya.

Group 3
Ashlee Feliciano- Given that she wasn't feeling well she did pretty good, but she was still a bit off. I would love to see her when she is feeling 100%. 

Melinda Ademi-She sings a more upbeat song than several of the previous contestants. She gets the judges really moving. I love Melinda's personality and her voice is pretty solid. It sounds very smooth.

Kree Harrison-She's had a tough journey on this show thus far, very hit or miss. I personally didn't really know much about her, but her voice is high quality. Keith gets goose bumps, and thinks she is amazing.

Group 3 Results
Who Moves On? Kree, Melinda, Lauren(we didn't see or hear her)
Who Goes Home? Ashlee, Brianna Oakley, Serena Joy-Crowe
Opinion? We didn't see Brianna this round, but she was very good in previous rounds, so it's a bit suprising to hear she is going home. I am glad that we will see more of Kree and Melinda, both impressed me.

Top 24 Females to Top 20 Females
We learn that there are 24 ladies remaining but that number must be cut down to the Top 20.
Going Home:
1. Lauren Mink
2. Hollie Marie Miller
3.Arielle Sprague

Idol Sing Off  
In front of everyone they have to perform with the band to get to the next round.

Stephanie Schimel versus Rachel Hale

Going Home: 
4. Stephanie Schimel

Opinion? I think it was a wise decision. Rachel was far superior throughout the competition. 

Top 28 Males to Top 20 Males
The men must be reduced from 28 males to the remaining Top 20.  

Idol Sing Off

Adam Sanders versus Josh Holiday

Going Home:
1. Peter Garrett
2. Marvin Calderone
3. Devin Jones
4. Kenny Harrison
5. Bill White
6. Tony Foster
7. David Leathers Jr.
8. Adam Sanders

Opinion? Way too much falsetto for Adam and he went off pitch a ton, so it's not surprising he is gone. I'm upset that David Leathers is gone again. I liked that kid, and for the second year in a row he is didn't make it. Shouldn't be surprised that he is gone given the fact that we barely saw him, but still.

Final Thoughts

*I like a ton of these contestants. I don't know if it is the strongest Top 40 we have ever had, but it's incredibly strong, especially from the female side.

*My favorites of the night were Angela Miller, Candice Glover, Kree Harrison, Janelle Arthur and Melinda Ademi. These women are very strong. There are many other notable ladies out there that if they choose the correct songs then anything is possible.

*It wasn't until Las Vegas Week that Jessica Sanchez and Phillip Phillips really started to stand out, so even if we don't know a contestant so far, it doesn't mean a ton in the long run. There is still plenty of time to really shine and I think some of these contestants are gonna do just that.

Hollywood Week is Over! We are one step closer to live rounds. Next week is Las Vegas Week and at that point we will learn the Top 12 Females and top 12 Males that will perform live. So next week is a pretty critical week. Only gets harder for the contestants. Come on back here after the next brand new episode. Until then have a great week, see ya!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Hollywood Week: Part 3

Welcome back! Tonight is Ladies Night. Last week we saw the men go through the Hollywood week process. They were a few surprise eliminations, a few surprises of people going through, but that was then and tonight is all about the female contestants. Overall the females have been very strong thus far, so it should be interesting to see how they do on the bigger stage. Tonight will follow the same format as last week with the majority of the time being about the groups. I'll take you through it all. So let's see what happens:

Brutal Cuts Abound?
We learn that there are more girls than guys so there will be a bigger amount of eliminations from the girl side than from the guy side. Well if that's the case then why not have a total of 40 going to the next round but have it be 40 of the best, rather than a split of 20 guys and 20 girls? Maybe there are really 25 great girls and only 15 great guys, isn't it worth being a little uneven rather than bringing back 5 only semi good guys and eliminating 5 really great girls? I've had this gripe for years and years and it never really does anything. Whatever. Let's move on...

Acapella 10
This round has 10 girls stand in a line and they sing acapella. They are told right away if they stay or go.

Notable Contestants Moving
On: Angela Miller, Victoria Acosta, Janelle Arthur, Rachel Hale, Candice Glover, Isabelle, Kez Ban, Briana Oakley, Melinda Edami, Ashley Feliciano 

Notable Contestants Eliminated: Mariah Pulice, Ashley Smith, Anne Difoni, Sarah Restucio, Megan Miller

*There are many others that either made it, or were eliminated but we didn't see them, we just saw random reactions.

Group Round Formation
Like last week the groups are pre-determined by the Producers, rather than having the contestants create groups on their own. This adds a bit of extra drama, and who doesn't want extra drama from these group rounds? There just isn't enough.  

Random Findings: Kez Ban is trying to blend in with her group but is having a tough time. She is very opinionated and overly excitable and her group is trying to calm her down a bit. A few other groups are having some issues agreeing on a song, other groups can't figure out their choreography. They show us Kez Ban's group again. Her group finds her very eccentric, and that she is, and Kez Ban knows it.

My Opinion: Kez Ban is highly entertaining. Her voice sounds very crackly and shaky during rehearsals but I still enjoy me some Kez Ban. She'll never win the show, but she is memorable and that works for me. All in all not a ton of focus on the drama from the other ladies groups initally. 

Group Round Performances
 Randy is "in studio" so he is not around for the first 5 Groups of this Group Round. So it's just Nicki, Mariah and Keith to begin with. 

~Group 1=Melinda Ademi, Denise Jackson, Candice Glover, Kamaria Ousley
Who's Moving On? All of Em
Who's Going Home? None of Em
Opinion? Candice's voice and Kamaria's voice really stood out for me. Of the 4 of them the weakest was Melinda's, but even hers was pretty good. They blended really well together.

~Group 2=Morgan Leigh Boberg, Lauren Mink, Brandy Hotard
Who's Moving On? All of Em
Who's Going Home? None of Em 
Opinion? All 4 are very country, but none blew me away completely.

~Group 3= Savannah Votion, Lizz Weiss, Daysia Hall, J'Leigh Chauvin
Who's Moving On? Daysia Hall
Who's Going Home? Savannah, Lizz and J'Leigh
Opinion? Not good at all. They all struggled mightily. They just didn't blend well together at all. They forgot lyrics and harmonies.Daysia forgot her lyrics but still went through, I guess they liked something from her past because this was a mess.

~Group 4=Kriss Mincey, Janel Stinney, Cristabel Clack and one other unidentified female
Who's Moving On? All of Em
Who's Going Home? None of Em
Opinion? We see that the group had some struggles when they were being formed, especially with Janel. Janel was pretty stand-offish with the rest of her group. Very disconnected. Janel forgot all of her lyrics on stage. Not saying one thing has to do with the other, but it sure is possible. It's crazy that Janel made it through, she just completely broke down after her performance. Drama drama.

Random Contestants Moving On=Shubha Vedula, Sarina-Joi Crowe, Aubrey Cleland

~Group 5=Seretha Guinn, Tenna Torres, Kiara Lanier and an unidentified female
Who's Moving On? Tenna, Kiara and Unidentified Girl 
Who's Going Home? Seretha
Opinion? Seretha was vocally really good but a bit boring, Tenna and Kiara were off and the other chick was not good at all. Nicki believes that this was a very bad song choice. Pretty shocked that the other 3 were going through and not Seretha, since I thought Seretha would be the only one moving on.

Randy is back for the rest of the Group Performances

~Group 6=Erin Christine, Zoanette Johnson, Lauren Bettes, Isabelle
Who's Moving On? Erin, Zoanette, Isabelle
Who's Going Home? Lauren
Opinion? I still don't get why "Isabelle" only has one name, but there ya go. This group had some drama with Zoanette during the inital group formation but found it's footing on stage.

~Group 7= Shira Gavrielov, Alisha Dixon, Liz Bills, Courtney Calle
Who's Moving On? Liz Bills 
Who's Going Home? Shira, Courtney, Alisha
Opinion?=This group struggled with their song choice throughout the process. Liz and the rest of her group don't get along. This group was all over the place. No one stood out. They were a mess. It was a little uncomfortable to watch actually. After being eliminated Shira comes back on stage looking for an explanation and makes things awkward. The judges explained that she just didn't have it. Simple enough.

~Group 8=Stephanie Schimel, Alex Delaney, Kalli Therinae, Holly Miller
Who's Moving On? Stephanie and Holly
Who's Going Home?  Alex and Kallie
Opinion? This group changed songs the morning of their performance. Very gutsy. Kalli and Holly were the only ones who were able to adapt and sing the proper lyrics. Stephanie didn't know the lyrics despite being the one to change the song. Stephanie was even shocked that she got through.

~Group 9=Britnee Kellogg, Kree Harrison, Brandy Neelly, Haley Davis
Who's Moving On? Britnee, Kree, Haley
Who's Going Home? Brandy
Opinion? This group was all about the drama. One of the group members left during rehearsals because she needed to sleep, so she was unprepared, which made the other group members a little scattered. The performance on stage was pretty scattered as well. Keith tells Brandy that he loves her voice, yet she goes home? Don't understand, would've liked a little explanation on her elimination.

~Group 10= Kez Ban, Breanna Steer, Angela Miller, Janelle Arthur
Who's Moving On? All of Em
Who's Going Home? None of Em
Opinion? We saw a ton of Kez Ban's group earlier in the episode. The rest of the group didn't gel well with Kez Ban, to say the least. But then again Kez Ban didn't really want to gel with them. I think on stage they really worked well together, it's crazy how opposite their on stage dynamics were with their off stage. All of them have very solid voices, Janelle and Angela's were far superior, but Brianna was decent and Kez Ban is just crazy enough to keep going through. Especially with Nicki Minaj as a judge.

Final Thoughts

*A ton of country contestants out there. Given the success of former Idol winner and just recent multiple Grammy award winner Carrie Underwood it wouldn't be a bad thing to follow in her shoes.

*A ton of women forgot the lyrics today. They used their hands and arms to write the lyrics but even that didn't work. Gotta say Nicki Minaj's facial expressions every time someone messed up their lyrics was pretty priceless. But given that last week she sent through a group that knew no words I can't really take her 100% seriously. But I still love her facial expressions.

*A ton of really strong ladies tonight. Candice Glover, Rachel Hale, Janelle Arthur, Angela Miller and several others impressed me. I love me some Kez Ban but she was pretty difficult to handle. Completly entertaining, but her vocal quality was not at the level I wish it was, especially when you compare it to Janelle and Angela.

*Just a note, we saw 4 less group performances, and far more drama than the males last week. Just saying. 

That's it. What did you think of the ladies? Tomorrow we will see them perform solo and we will learn not only the fates of 20 ladies, but the 28 remaining men will be whittled down to 20 as well. So a lot of things tomorrow to look forward to. So come back here right after the next episode. So until then, see ya!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Hollywood Week: Part 2

It's Day 2 of Men's Hollywood Week. We had a few changes last night, first came that the ladies would not be part of this week and would sing next week, and secondly that the producers were to decide how the groups would be formed. Both changes contributed to and really highlighted some sub par performances. I do hope a few contestants really shine tonight because last night was pretty underwhelming. So let's see how it all turns out when the guys have one last chance to perform on their own. Here we go:

Solo Performances
Group 1
Paul Jolley- Starts out super nervous. He chooses a Carrie Underwood song and it's all big notes. He has a big voice. Nicki chastises Paul for being nervous and showing it. Keith encourages him to be "Jolly".

Lazaro Abros-We see a few seconds of Lazaro singing a Lady Gaga song and he sounds the same as he always does.  Pretty good.

Curtis Finch Jr- He sounds incredibly theatrical today. His voice is just as high quality but it was a little much again. I haven't been incredibly pleased with Curtis since his audition.

There are 5 other guys but we don't see or hear them.

Group 1 Results
Who Moves On? Paul, Lazaro and Curtis
Who Goes Home? The guys we didn't see. Makes sense.
Opinion? Lazaro has been solid throughout, we have only seen bits and pieces of Paul Jolley but he needs to overcome his nervousness and Curtis needs to get a bit more humble. But I guess it is hard when Mariah Carey tells him over and over how wonderful he is. 

Group 2
Devin Velez-Where did this guy come from? They have been hiding him somewhere because his voice is all sorts of good, and he isn't affected at all. 

Gupreet Singh Sarin-Sounds a whole lot better than he did during his group performance. We only see about 10 seconds of him but it's solid.

Cortez Shaw-This is the guy that Nicki disliked in the beginning, and not sure why she did. He's actually pretty good.

Matheus Fernandes-He does a very dark and twisty version of Kelly Clarkson's "Stronger". It was a little too intense. He did way way way too much in his 1 minute up there.

We didn't see 6 of the other guys. 

Group 2 Results
Who Moves On? Devin, Gupreet, Cortez , Adam(whom we didn't hear), and 1 uncredited guy
Who Goes Home? Matheus Fernandes and 2 other guys
Opinion? Matheus just isn't ready. He has a decent voice but not ready for everything else. It's weird we didn't even get a glimpse of Adam, and the other guy was uncredited yet both made it to the next round. I wonder if that's a sign of their future in this competition.

Group 3
Nicholas Mathis-Randy thinks he is just under the song, and he is, he doesn't really catch up with the band and it makes it kind of jarring, especially since he does have a pretty good voice.

Papa Peachez-It doesn't seem like Papa is into this show, Nicki doesn't think Papa is into this show, yet all we see is Randy looking all happy and bobbing his head in approval. What show is he watching? Nicki thinks Papa lost what was special about him.

Jimmy Smith-He is a pretty standard American Idol contestant. He is a good looking guy with a decent voice but nothing spectacular.

There are 5 other guys we don't see or hear.

Group 3 Results
Who Moves On? Jimmy Smith and Johnny Keyser(who we didn't see or hear) and Vincent Powell(who we didn't see or hear) and 3 other guys.
Who Goes Home? Nicholas and Papa
Opinion? Papa went pretty far considering he probably shouldn't have made it out of the auditions. Once he lost Nicki it was all over for him. Interesting that we didn't see or hear Johnny Keyser and Vincent Powell and some other guys and they went in. Not sure why we couldn't even hear 3 or 5 seconds, not sure it would have taken that much energy.

Group 4
Nick Boddington-He got to Las Vegas last year but was cut at that point, so he is hoping he at least gets that far this year. I liked Nick last year and I like him this year.

Charlie Askew-He is an odd little guy with a semi decent voice. He has personality so that could do him well if he gets to the Live Rounds. Nicki is obsessed with him and he tells her he is obsessed with her. She thinks he is so odd that it's so right.

6 other guys we don't see or hear.

Group 4 Results
Who Moves On? JDA, Nick, Mathanee, Charlie
Who Goes Home? 4 other guys
Opinion? We saw a good amount of Mathanee and JDA yesterday so it's not surprising that we didn't see them tonight. We will see how Charlie fairs later down the road.

Group 5
Burnell Taylor-I wasn't incredibly impressed with him yesterday but all that changed today.

Marvin Calderon-We saw a little snippet of him yesterday and a few more seconds today. I like his voice quality and tone.

Group 5 Results
Who Moves On? Burnell and Marvin
Who Goes Home? The other people. We don't even see them in a line this time, they just announce the guys that go through and that's it.
Opinion?  We only saw a little bit from both guys but they have really nice voices. The fact that they didn't get a ton of screen time could be telling though.

Group 6
Micah Johnson-This guy has had an unbelievable journey given that he only recently developed a voice impediment due to a botched surgery. He has overcome it by just singing really well.

Group 6 Results
Who Moves On? No idea. They don't show us.
Who Goes Home? Micah Johnson, Gabe Brown, Sanni, Nate Tao
Opinion?  Micah Johnson and Nate Tao leaving were my biggest shocks of the night.They both showed a lot of depth and talent. I wish we saw a little more of Nate.

Last Announcement of the Night
We learn that next week 8 more guys will be eliminated before they get to go to the next round in Las Vegas to help form the Top 40 with the ladies.

Final Thoughts

*It was a better night than last night, but I am still not entirely pumped up about this group of guys. 2 of my favorites in Nate and Micah were eliminated, while people like Charlie and Johnny Keyser are still around. I just feel this group of guys will stay at this rate. I do hope a few more of these guys will step it up. I am really liking Nick, Devin and Burnell. I think Curtis has a great voice but is just a little too theatrical and over the type. We'll see how it all shakes out.

*Randy's continual head bobbing in agreement with what was happening almost never matched up to the quality of the contestant. It didn't matter if the contestants were good or they were bad all we saw was Randy bobbing that head. I just don't even know anymore with this guy.

That's it. A few solid contestants, a few surprises tonight. Not bad. Next week is Ladies Week and the final cut that will round out the Top 40. So come on back next time. So until then, see ya!