Tuesday, April 6, 2010

American Idol 2010 -- Top 9

Tonight is Lennon and McCartney (the Beatles) Night on American Idol.

(As I found the song list on the Vote for the Worst website, I’ll be forecasting what I think will happen with each performance, and then comment on what does happen.)

Aaron - The Long and Winding Road – One of my least favorite songs by the Beatles.  It is such a drab and dreary song that plods along.   And this song is even more unappealing to me coming from Aaron.  Please let this be the song that sends him on the “long and winding road” home.

(ASIDE:  I really wish the judges would ignore the people in the crowd.  Nothing slows the show down more than having Simon turn around and look at who “boo-ed” him after he told someone they did a poor job.  Sheesh.)

KatieLet it Be – One of the most cliché songs by the Beatles.  It has been played to death.  Not looking forward to this performance one bit.  She’s trying to “make it her own,” which is always important to the judges, but she took no real risks on her vocals.  She did nothing to hurt or help her position in the competition.   

Andrew Can’t Buy Me Love – I’ll be interested on what kind of arrangement Andrew does with this one.  If he sings the Beatles version, he’ll be quickly forgotten.  If he can somehow modernize the song without completely destroying it, he could win the night.  Andrew tried to pull the song out of the 1960s, and only managed to get it to the 80s.  It wasn’t great, but it was much better than if he’d have tried to make it exactly like the original.

MikeEleanor Rigby – this should be a hot mess.  Ok, it wasn’t a complete hot mess.  He turned it into an R&B song and it kinda worked, but he could have done the same thing to some different song and it probably would have translated better (maybe something like Sgt. Pepper’s LHCB?).  But, it was probably better than I’ve giving it credit, because I don’t like R&B for the most part. 

(ASIDE:  I’ve been muting the show between songs so I could listen to the Beatles songs in my iTunes library, which means I’ve been missing tonight’s video packages.  Well, I just listened to the package for Crystal, where all the other contestants talk about one person, and it was kinda creepy.  It felt like a memorial tribute one might make to honor someone who’s just died.  Creepy.)

Crystal Come Together – The second most cliché Beatles’ song being performed tonight.  She turned it into a Country version (with some dude playing a didgeridoo beside her which is odd).  This was probably the most entertaining song of the night.  

TimAll My Loving – one of the earliest Beatles songs being sung tonight.  It will either be really good, or really bad.  I’m betting it’s the later.  Ummm…..hmmmmmm………uhhhhhhhhh.  Ok, imagine if Jason Mraz and Brian Setzer reproduced and their kid made it to the Top 9 of American Idol.  Got that in your head?  Good, because I’m pretty sure that was what Tim was going for, but, unfortunately he just fell short of his goal.  At least he still has the Vote for the Worst crowd’s support, because he’ll need it. 

CaseyJealous Guy – I was unfamiliar with this song, so I listened to it on youtube.  This song does not have a guitar on the recording I listened to, so maybe Casey puts the 6-string down for once, which should be quite awkward.  Nope, he did it with the guitar.  He was wise to pick a relatively unknown song, because then he could get away with singing it exactly like the original, although I don’t remember Lennon being quite so liberal with goat-vibrato in his version.  This guy is a joke.

SiobhanAcross the Universe – I didn’t recognize the song from the title alone, but after listening to it online, I remembered it, and it fits Siobhan’s personality to a “T”.  Unfortunately, it doesn’t translate through the television.  It was a dud, in my opinion.  The song had zero personality or flair.  I hope her off-stage personality will keep her in the competition for a few more weeks.  She needs to step her game up.

(ASIDE:  Ughh, they are obviously stalling for time because there is 15 minutes left for one performer.  They are asking the contestants beauty contest-style questions and allowing weirdos from the audience to come on stage.  All of this filler is insufferable, and it makes me long for the return of the 1-hour shows.)

Lee Hey Jude – My favorite Beatles song of the night by my favorite contestant remaining in the competition.  I’m cautiously optimistic.  (Note: I would promise to vote a hundred times a week if Lee would learn how to properly wear a stocking cap).  He’s doing an adequate job with the song, but he went to the chorus way too early.  And what the hell is up with the bagpipes?  Totally distracting, totally unnecessary, a total gimmick, and, ultimately, they ruined the song for me.  Which is a bummer, because he was on track to be my favorite of the night.

Disappointed that no one sang the following songs, all of which are better “performance” songs than most of the ones done tonight.
  • Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
  • Day Tripper
  • Lady Madonna
  • Ballad of John and Yoko
  • Get Back
  • Help!
  • Drive My Car
  • With a Little Help from my Friends
  • Yellow Submarine, Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, or I am the Walrus – any of which I would have preferred Siobhan to have sang instead of the borefest that was Across the Universe.
  • Anything from my favorite Beatles album, “Rubber Soul”, could have easily been updated and modernized and knocked the judge’s and audience’s socks off.  Lee could have killed The Word.  Crystal would have nailed In My Life.  Aaron might have pulled of Drive My Car.  Siobhan could have screamed her way through I’m Looking Through You.  Andrew might have pulled off Michelle.  Kinda bums me out that no one attempted a song from this album. 
  • Also surprising was that no one attempted any McCartney/Wings songs.  No one wanted to do Maybe I'm Amazed, Live and Let Die, or Band on the Run?  Hard to believe, unless they weren't allowed to choose from those songs, which would be odd during "Lennon and McCartney" night.
After the replay, I’d have to say my order tonight was:

TOP:  Big Mike, Crystal
MIDDLE:  Lee, Katie, Casey, Siobhan
BOTTOM:  Tim, Aaron, Andrew

After the reply, I'm also convinced that this year's contestants are horrible at song selection.  Why no one has called me to come produce this show is beyond me.

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