Tuesday, February 23, 2010

American Idol -- Top 24 -- Girls Night

(These are my notes from tonight's American Idol)

Ryan introduces the Judges and notes that Ellen isn’t sitting by Simon anymore.  Ellen says that Simon is too handsy and has proof on video.  Hilarious.

(Go HERE if you want to put a face with the contestant's names)

Paige Davis – Horrible song choice, weird outfit, and don’t hit the microphone when clapping on stage Simon didn’t like song choice, but thinks she has the best voice of the girls.  Dawg & Kara rambled on but liked her.  Ellen liked her and thought she pulled it off.  It must have sounded better live, because I did not like her voice or the song choice.

Ashley Rodriguez – (I love that Simon makes fun of Jordan Sparks’ “Battlefield”) – She’s singing Leona Lewis, which is like singing Whitney, Mariah, or Celine, you shouldn’t do it unless you have some great pipes.  At least it’s a fairly unknown song, so we can’t compare her to Leona.  “This song is eating her alive,” the wife says, and I can’t disagree.  Kara gives credit for taking on big song, but didn’t think it was great; Dawg says it wasn’t Ashley; Ellen wants Ashley to sing a different style of song and take risk; Simon thought is was clumsy, didn’t like arrangement, thinks she could be in trouble.  It’s a shame because the wife and I liked Ashley initially.

Janell Wheeler – She won Simon over in Hollywood week after his being lukewarm to her.  She’s singing Heart’s “What About Love”.  Risky song choice.  Will depend on the arrangement.  Good until the chorus, and then the song crushed her soul.  She is a decent singer, but the song was way too big for her voice.  Dawg song-choiced her; Ellen liked song choice and her performance overall; Simon says she delivered 65% and she went off key, he likes her voice; Kara said the big notes caused her to lose the originality of her voice.

Lilly Scott – Colorado girl, whoop-whoop!!!  She’s a musician, which I always love.  Singing “Fixin’ A Hole” by the Beatles with her guitar.  Unknown (to me) song.  Great song choice.  Shows off her unique voice.  Good stage presence.  Best so far.  Ellen thinks that’s what they’ve been talking about regarding song choice, she loved it; Simon felt she sang song because it portrayed her as an artist; Kara says she’s believable; Dawg likes her indie-artist style and honesty.  Best so far.

Katelyn Epperly – plays the piano in her video.  Singing “Oh, Darlin’”.  Looks/sounds like she’s in the stage production of “Grease”.  Ok performance.  Should get her though to next week.  Simon thought she was screaming and messy in parts, but he likes her.  Kara asks her questions and then compliments her knowledge of her voice, and gives fashion tips.  Dawg talks about having the runs and then likes her vibe.  Ellen like it ok and said she has a nice voice.

Haeley Vaghn – another Colorado girl.  She’s 16 and got her nose pierced as reward for making it to Hollywood.  Singing a Beatles song, “I Wanna Hold Your Hand”.  Hard to watch, even harder to listen to.  Strumming the guitar.  She has an odd tone to her voice.  Weird.  Kara explains technical problems of the song, then compliments her for having “fun”.  Dawg loves her unpredictability, but doesn’t like her high notes.  Ellen mentions that she’s 16, and she enjoyed it.  Simon gets “honest” and says it was verging on terrible and a complete and utter mess.  

Lacey Brown – was in Hollywood last year.  “Landslide” by Fleetwood Mac is her song choice.  Bad first line.  Doesn’t get any better.  She sounds out of tune and she’s pronouncing words oddly.  She sounds like a Cindy Lauper impressionist.  Dawg didn’t like the song choice and thought it was terrible and pitchy (drink).  Ellen thinks she’s better than that performance.  Simon thought it was depressing and indulgent and boring.  Kara thought she was forcing it and started requesting songs. 

Michelle Delamor – has a crazy family, according to her intro video.  Performing Alicia Keys’ “Fallen”.  From the first line, it pales in comparison to the original.  The middle gets much better.  Ending is ok.  Ellen thought it was fantastic and safe.  Simon thought she did very well and was professional, but was never wowed.  Kara didn’t think she lived up to her potential.  Dawg though it was ok, but that she needs to take risks.

Didi Benami – She sang one of Kara’s songs during Hollywood week.  She’s emotional and a crier.  Singing “The Way I Am,” which is a great song.  She’s singing it very close to the original, which shouldn’t matter because the song isn’t very well known.  It’s a safe song that was well done.  Simon has a problem with her trying to sound like the original artist (Adele, Duffy, etc.).  Kara gets technical and Simon interjects that it wasn’t memorable.  Dawg feels the same way as both Kara and Simon.  Ellen likes her voice, but feels it doesn’t make a good impression.   (Side note:  Brodie is snoring).

Siobhan Magnus – Is singing Chris Issac’s “Wicked Game”.  Weird, odd performance.  This song is going to win her some major “Vote for the Worst” style points.  Yikes.  It was fine, musically, but horrible for this performance.  Kara wouldn’t have picked the song, but she liked the performance.  (I just noticed Kara’s fake-tan line on her scalp—funny).  Dawg didn’t like the seriousness of the song.  Ellen loved it because it entertained her.  Simon thinks she’s a funny little thing, because she’s unknown.  He didn’t like it compared to her final Hollywood performance.    

Crystal Bowersox – Singing Alanis Morriset’s “Hand in my Pocket”.  Great song choice for her voice.  Love the harmonica and guitar playing.  She is the favorite in our house thus far.  Dawg has a bunch of reasons why she’s his favorite.  Ellen, too, is a fan.  Simon thought it was good, but says there are thousands of people doing the same thing in front of a subway (as a way to get her to quit being a sound-alike).  Kara thinks it wasn’t up to her full potential.  

Katie Stevens – is 17 and is singing “Feeling Good” by Michael Buble.  The slow intro was good.  The up-tempo middle was good.  The ending was good.  I wonder how many times they’ll bring up her age.  Ellen brings up her age and wants her to be younger and current.  Simon agrees totally with Ellen, and thought it became annoying (and he brings up her age).  Kara doesn’t think she killed the song.  Dawg thinks she was pushing too hard (and brings up her age twice).  

I would rank them (from best to worst):
1.       Crystal Bowersox
2.       Didi Benami
3.       Lilly Scott
4.       Katie Stevens
5.       Michelle Delamor
6.       Ashley Rodriguez
7.       Katelyn Epperly
8.       Janell Wheeler
9.       Paige Davis
Bottom 3 – Lacy Brown, Haeley Vaughn, Siohban Magnus
With Lacy and Haeley going home

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