“American Idol,” March 11

11 Mar

Top 12 — Lennon/McCartney night — brand new stage — new opening graphics — yep, it’s a big night for “Idol.”

The Lennon/McCartney night went a lot better than I thought it would (except, of course, for the WORST “Idol” performance ever…but we’ll get to that!). Lots of solid performances.

The new stage looks just like the one in the video game that they released a couple years ago — the PS2 one, where you had to hit the notes every so often? Yep, just like that fake stage. Which is alright, I guess. 🙂

The opening graphics are better than the old ones, but that’s not saying much.

Alright — enough chitchat — on to the performances!

Syesha Mercado went first, singing “Got To Get You Into My Life,” and it was a funky version. At first I wasn’t so sure, but then she got into it, and it was pretty good.
Randy said: It started rough but it was good by the middle — it was “alright.”
Paula said: She’s a very very good singer and the middle to end was good.
Simon said: It was better than “alright” — it was a great song choice but she looked nervous.

Chikezie was next, and, wow, where has this guy been all this time? His version of “She’s a Woman” was awesome. He started out sitting by some guys playing fiddles, banjos and tambourines, but then he got into the really rocking part and rocked it out hardcore. Really awesome.
Randy said: He was thoroughly entertained — “Chikezie smashed it.”
Paula said: He took a risk but it worked, and she’s been waiting for him to show off like this.
Simon said: He’s changed a lot in just a week’s time, and it was terrific.

Ramiele Malubay sang “In My Life.” Yes, the song is simple and pretty, and she kept it simple and pretty, but anyone else feel like she turned it into a bad Disney cartoon song? I half-expected animated squirrels to follow her out on stage and look up at her with big weepy animated eyes.
Randy said: It was kind of pretty but also pretty boring.
Paula said: It was pretty safe and she needs to make use of her voice.
Simon said: He was “bored to tears” throughout the song, it was forgettable and he expects more out of her.

Jason Castro sang “If I Fell,” with just his guitar. Although he kept it pretty close to the original, I thought it was very beautifully done.
Randy said: He needed to be more heartfelt (um, did he even see the same performance I did?).
Paula said: It was heartfelt and he has a special connection with the audience.
Simon said: It felt like a “student in the bedroom at midnight” and boring, but good enough to make it to next week.

Carly Smithson sang “Come Together.” Again, I’m still not 100 percent a fan of this chick, so I wasn’t bowled over.
Randy said: She was strong and confident and didn’t have a note out of tune — “stellar.”
Paula said: It was like watching a star perform.
Simon said: She finally picked the song that connected her with the audience and Carly reminded him of Kelly Clarkson.

David Cook emo’d out “Eleanor Rigby.” He seemed to really love the line, “all the lonely people.” Eyeliner dripped across America…
Randy said: He can definitely rock it out — it was a little pitchy, though, but it rocked.
Paula said: He’s the dark horse of the competition.
Simon said: “Brilliant” — and if the show is a true talent competition and not about popularity, he could win the show.

Brooke White did a beautiful job of “Let It Be.” She kept it true to the original and it was gorgeous. Of course she sang it with her piano.
Randy said: He didn’t think it was her strongest performance but he loved her conviction and it was a very heartfelt performance.
Paula said: She has an emotional connection with the audience and this kind of performance is in her niche.
Simon said: One of the better performances of the night, it was a good choice of song and it’s the third week straight she’s performed well.

David Hernandez sang “I Saw Her Standing There.” He kept it to the original, which, to me, made it all seem too showy and old-fashioned.
Randy said: It was too overdone.
Paula said: He over-did it and he needs to scale back.
Simon said: “No, no, no” — it was “corny verging on desperate,” and it wasn’t very cool.

Amanda Overmyer sang “You Can’t Do That,” and she turned it into that bluesy-rock she’s best at. And, hey, did she drop like half her size? I’d kill to lose that much weight in just a week’s time.
Randy said: He loved it.
Paula said: She looked like a star.
Simon said: It wasn’t as good as last week, she needs to work on her pronunciation (very true — she did sound slurry) but she’s a breath of fresh air.

Michael Johns sang a very simple version of “Across the Universe.”
Randy said: It wasn’t his best and it was a little sleepy.
Paula said: “It takes inner strength to do nothing but…” and, I don’t know, either Randy or Simon finished, “…sing brilliantly?”
Simon said: He still needs to pick a song that will connect him to the audience. It was solid and good but he needs to let go.

Here we go, folks — WORST Idol performance EVER.
Kristy Lee Cook decided to run with the advice she was given last week — basically to go country — and she royally messed up “Eight Days a Week.” She sang it the same way it was originally sung — really no twang there — but the music was full of fiddles. This one is for the record books…it was a mess.
Randy said: He was torn — he liked some of it (????) but didn’t like other parts of it.
Paula said: She didn’t enjoy it and she didn’t get it.
Simon said: It was horrendous — “very brave but probably very foolish” and it was like a “ghastly county fair.”

David Archuleta was next singing “We Can Work It Out.” Bless him…this was bad, very bad (but still loads better than Kristy Lee). He admitted in his clip that he didn’t know the song, other than Stevie Wonder’s version, so he tried to copy that. But he forgot the words right at the beginning, and he never really got them back for the rest of the song. But, he’s America’s boy-wonder, so he’ll definitely be back next week.
Randy said: It was not on point and not his vibe, and it felt forced.
Paula said: When he messes up, he can’t let it show on his face (classic dance teacher criticism, that is).
Simon said: It was a mess, and at this stage he expects incredible performances.

My pick to go home tomorrow night? Kristy Lee Cook might stick around just because it was horrendous enough to remember. But I totally forgot what Ramiele sang half-way through the show, so I think she may go.

5 Responses to ““American Idol,” March 11”

  1. American Idol #1 Fan March 12, 2008 at 9:49 am #

    I agree about Archuleta, it was pretty weak and I’d like to hear better performances from Johns and Castro.

  2. sheenabarnett March 12, 2008 at 10:13 am #

    I agree w/ you about Johns. I loved him in the beginning, but now it feels like the same thing every week. So far I’ve been happy with Castro.

  3. Ginny March 13, 2008 at 2:40 pm #

    I wish Kristy Lee had gone home! Will somebody please tell her to stop standing so weird? And to stop raising her eyebrows/widening her eyes at the camera?!

  4. sheenabarnett March 13, 2008 at 2:42 pm #

    Ahh!! Exactly!! I hate the way she stands!

    I read another blog — I think it was at Entertainment Weekly? — who called her Stands With Wide Stance. Brilliant!

  5. Caryra March 24, 2008 at 7:08 pm #

    well done, man

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