The British Are Coming…and Ashley is Crying

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So Tuesday was British Invasion Night on American Idol and we got to see Peter Noone and Lulu work their magic on our little Idols. And as an added bonus…we got to see way more of a little girl named Ashley than we should or would have chosen to have seen.

Up first was Haley Scarnato, who actually sang well on “Tell Him,” which is good since being first AND being forgettable are not a good combination. I still think Haley is a little pageant-y…and I really wish she’d grow her eyebrows in…but I think she has a great chance to stay. Plus, she looked fab in her halter and shorts. (My 15-year-old brother, Cooper, calls her…Haley Scar-HOT-o.) She even got Simon cooing.

Chris Richardson was up next, singing “Don’t Let the Sun Catch You Crying.” To me, he sounded better with the piano in the rehearsal clip than on stage. The guitar was a nice touch…but Chris overpowered the instrument and really got nasally. He needed to pull back vocally and sing even softer. I think he’s safe though. It was good enough…but the star quality was lacking. He needed a softer, emotive touch.

I don’t want anyone to hate me for this…but I just don’t like Stephanie Edwards. I honestly don’t like her style or voice. I’m sure it’s a cultural thing…but all I hear when she sings are pitch problems and awkward phrasing. Last night she sang “You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me” and I found it particularly bad. I think she might need to prepare herself to head home.

SIDENOTE: Something is just really off about that RV commercial where the Amish guy ends up on the bus with the little kid. It’s just wrong. Can I get an amen?

After the offensive Amish commercial, Blake Lewis steps up to the mic and sings “It’s the Time of the Season for Loving.” Now, I like Blake…but I don’t think he has the strongest male voice this year. This song was good for him but, if you go back and listen, you can hear that the male backup singers give him a boost in the lower register. Plus, he doesn’t complete his phrasing. That said, I loved this arrangement of the song and thought it very entertaining. Blake has a sweetness to his voice that I like. This song was a bit of a stretch for his upper register because he doesn’t have great range and needs better breath control…or maybe he has been beatboxing so much that he doesn’t know how to actually sing real notes in the upper range. Don’t think I’m being too hard on him…I only say this because I think he has such a great style and fun stage presence. And I loved the judges response to him. He will stay and rightly deserves to do so. Oh…and my vote is for Ryan to do the robot and beat box in every show. That cracked me up.

Believe it or not, LaKisha Jones was really was one of my least favorites this week. She sang “Diamond are Forever,” and I agreed with Simon about her look and sound being too old for her. Also, she was off pitch a couple of times, and she did nothing to make the song her own. However, she’s safe.

Phil Stacey sang “Tobacco Road” and all I could think was how much better it was with all the guys at the end of Season 5. I didn’t like this at all. I think he might be in danger of going home this week. (Don’t tell anyone, but I’m hoping he does.)

The Way It Should Be Done…with a little Kevin Covais

Okay…I don’t want to admit this…but…I liked Jordin Sparks last night. She sang “I Who Have Nothing” and knocked it out of the park. I haven’t wanted to like her because she has been such a pile of candy coating in this competition and I couldn’t take her seriously. This performance changed that. The girl simply understood the emotion of that song and delivered it. I was genuinely impressed. If she keeps this up…I’ll have to start rooting for her. (Don’t tell anyone, but I really don’t want to.) She’s safe this week.

And the award for the most awkward moments on American Idol go to Sanjaya Malakar, Ashley the Crying Pre-Teen, and AI Cameraman Hank “The Meathead” Smith. Sanjaya had jaws across America hanging slack as he belted…yes, belted…”Girl, You Really Got Me.” The kid sold it…though it was a little scary to watch. It was like Bambi giving a rendition of “Back in Black.” However, I actually enjoyed it. Yeah, he was off pitch several times…but he let loose and that was good to see. However, the sight and sound of Sanjaya rockin’ out was made more awkward when Cameraman Hank kept panning to a little girl in the audience who was SOBBING uncontrollably. Ends up, Ashley (the little girl) is a huge fan of Shamalamadingdong and couldn’t contain her joy…but oh how I wish she had. However, despite Bambi’s foray into rock and Ashley’s cringe-worthy weeping…I think Sanjaya managed to save his butt another week.

With a fiercely fine haircut, Gina Glocksen tackled “Paint it Black,” then she picked it up and proceeded to beat it to death. She absolutely butchered the song. The beginning was rough and, just as she began to recover, she lost it again. I really wanted Gina to do better, but I felt like she held back and kept it safe. If she had given the same pitchy performance but had had an attitude…I think she would have pulled it off. Gina may be in danger of going home. (However, the AI drummer was kickin’ some serious booty. Loved him.)

Chris Sligh came out next and sang “She’s Not There.” Chris has a really warm voice that shone through this rather crappy arrangement of a song. Actually, I think he has the best voice of all the men. Let’s just hope he can get the music director to give him better arrangements from here on out. I think he will be staying, but before we leave the topic of Chris S., let’s address the whole “Fro Patro” thing. I know some folks will say they don’t like the “Fro Patro” shout-out (cough...Shrew…cough)…but I have to admit…it made me laugh. As long as it doesn’t become a battle cry…I think it’s okay.

Finally…my favorite…Melinda Doolittle. Once again Miss Doolittle was the strongest competitor. “As Long as He Needs Me” is not a song I know…but she still managed to captivate me. I love Melinda and hope she wins. I definitely think she’s safe this week.

Okay…now it’s y’all’s turn…

Entertainment Weekly’s Write-Up (complete with a lovely picture of Ashley)

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40 Responses to “The British Are Coming…and Ashley is Crying”

  1. Hatson Says:

    I am so grateful the mute button was invented! Why didn’t LaKisha listen to Lulu? Check out how good Lulu was in To Sir With Love.(For you youngsters a really great film to rent) Jordin was actually my favorite tonight for some reason. I could have gone al long time without seeing the crying Ashley for pity sakes! Melinda is always good, but is that predictably boring? Also, I don’t remember loaned jewelry before. Where is this going? Will the contestants start to tell us which designer dressed them? Wiil they wear sandwich boards? AAARGH!!!

  2. Hatson Says:

    Gee aren’t mood swings great? I was a little harsh I think with my critique. Oh well, I will see what oh my I almost said (Y’ALL) think tomorrow. I am definitely being influenced by all of you. LOL

  3. Jan Says:

    Hatson: I love your review! We’re all friends here. I agree with you about why oh why didn’t Lakisha listen to Lulu? Hell, I want to see Lulu perform the song she suggested. I really liked the celebrity judges tonight. I feel like they brought out the best in the contestants.

    The crying kid make me laugh hysterically for some sick reason. It’s so ridiculous and even more so because she cried during Sanjaya’s performance. Hah, HAH. Bwaaaahhhhaaaaaa! Just wrong. Why did they keep showing her??! Sanjaya sucked less than normal. It was a good show tonight.

    I liked Haley, Blake, and Melinda tonight. I still think Melinda should win. Jordan is a contender as well.

  4. jenfera Says:

    Shelley, I agree with everything there except the bit about Jumbalaya. That performance just freaked me out. Creeped me out. In a Michael Jackson-skeery kind of way. What was with those things on his hands? The whole performance, intertwined with the close-ups of Ashley was just too much for me to take. Sensory overload! Make it stop! Make it stop!! Gaaaaaaaaaah!!!

    I was IM’ing a friend during the show and when freaky Philbert came on I said, Hey, isn’t that one of the songs the boys did in the big finale last week? She didn’t remember, so I dug up the video of the same clip you posted. My gawd, that was cheese-tastic! Of course, the middle part was fun with Taylor with the harp, and I was buying it all until the end when the medley abruptly switches to Don’t Stop by Fleetwood Mac. What the? One of these things is not like the other!

    I lurved Blake last night. I was a little disappointed with his problems with the upper register, but he has such presence. He owned the stage last night.

    I kept hoping Simon might have said to LaKisha, “You should have listened to Lulu!”

    I’m sure a lot of people look at Ryan as the new Dick Clark, but last night I saw something else in him. He could be the new Johnny Carson. Seriously! I could totally see him taking over for Jay someday and being quite could at it. He pulls off that bemused observer thing very well. I have to enter the Edy’s contest and the Pringles contest so I can get to the AI finale and stalk Ryan.

    😉

  5. jenfera Says:

    Quite good, I mean. Not quite could.

  6. Shelley Says:

    Jen…I TOTALLY agree with you about Ryan. That moment with Blake was old-school television magic…and we really need more of that these days.

    I heart Ryan Seacrest.

  7. nolagirl Says:

    I was both cringing and cackling when Ryan was bustin a move. Love him!

    About “Fro Patro”: Shelley said, “As long as it doesn’t become a battle cry…” I think that’s exactly what Chris plans to do with it. He obviously saw how effective it was in establishing a strong fan base for Taylor, so he’s going to try to do the same. It could backfire though, because a LOT of people were highly annoyed by Taylor’s Soul Patrol shout-outs. We shall see …

    For me, his lisp is starting to grate on my nerves. Sawwwry, Chris.

  8. ivoryhut Says:

    I missed most of the show last night. I walked in the house just in time to watch Jordin Sparks, and thought she did great. I heard Sanjaya’s performance but did not see it (was busy with some last minute chores). Although it didn’t make me stop and run to the tv, I was relieved to finally hear some life and energy coming from him. Finally, no more whimpering. I actually hope he stays another week because it’d be sad for him to have to go after his best effort of the competition so far.

    I love love love Colin Blunstone. Ever since I heard him do Tim Hardin’s “Misty Roses.” I thought Chris Sligh did a good job with “She’s Not There,” good enough to hang around some more. I’m with you, Shelley – of all the guys’ voices, his is the one I like the most.

    But I hope Melinda wins too.

  9. leejolem Says:

    I thought last night’s show was the best yet. I think Peter N. and Lulu gave great advice to the contestants. I actually think Lulu would be a great judge. To Sir with Love is a wonderful movie–I was kind of hoping someone would sing the song. I have never been a big Blake fan, but I loved his performance last night. The dancing along with the singing and a little beat box was kind of mesmerizing. Melinda and Jordin were stand outs also. Chris R. was better than usual, but I don’t think he has the vocal chops to win. I love Chris S’s voice, but didn’t really get the wandering thru the audience thingy. The “Fro Patro” thing is funny– I don’t think he really takes it seriously. The sign in the audience “bringing chubby back” was hi-larious.

    What to say about Sanjaya’s performance?? I was clapping and cheering–so glad so see him let loose and have fun. Not a great vocal, but I think he was kinda stickin it to Simon. The Ashley crying was a little over the top. Who is this girl??

  10. shrewspeaks Says:

    Jordan Sparks for me was the best of the night. Sorry “As long as he needs me” grates on my too much to like that perfomance.

    I thought Blake’s performance was hypnotic…this is the first time I have liked him.

    I even didn’t mind Chris R.

    Poor Phil he sounded so much better at the piano. He should have done a stripped down version instead of opting for the “Daughtry lite” performance.

    Lakisha..meh…girl you want to win, do your homework! Jordan is younger and picked a fabu song making me forget about Bassy even sang it. For things all british, she could have even sang To Sir, With Love and done bettah!

    I WILL never think of the Kinks the same way again! Enuff said…PLEASE MAKE IT END!

    She got Legs…and I hate her. nuff said part deux

    Gina and Chris I think suffered from not connecting with the lyrics…so one became over stylized and the other a bit of a side show.

    OKAY, Fro Patro…what I object to is not so much the battle cry (which is unoriginal) but the fact that if you type it in you get this in my estimation an unfair advantage.

    The big winner of the night? LuLu..I need to get me some of her stuff!

  11. baby duck Says:

    Pretty much everything leejolem said. Everyone brought it last night. It’s an important milestone, as the top 10 will be part of the AI concert tour. I think all 10 from AI5 got record deals (maybe not Lisa?). That said, knowing I was going last year to see Taylor, I hoped Chicken Little would be voted off ahead of that. If I were going this year, I’d feel the same way about Sanjaya.

    I bet Simon remembers Haley’s name now.

    Did not like the focus on Ashley. At all.

    I must still identify with the Soul Patrol, because the whole ‘fro patro (what is a patro?) really grates on me. Chris S is a good enough singer that he doesn’t need to be gimmicky, especially by trying to spin-off branding that is Taylor’s.

    My favs: Jordin, Melinda, and for the first time Blake.

  12. baby duck Says:

    Shrew, linkee no workee.

    Is the Dave that Chris S gave the shout-out to vftw-Dave? If so, why? I’m corn-fused.

  13. shrewspeaks Says:

    try this

  14. nolagirl Says:

    How did I miss Chris’ shout out???? That pretty much does rock.

  15. ivoryhut Says:

    I missed Ryan dancing??

  16. leejolem Says:

    Ivory, it was an attempt to dance, and it was adorable. Ryan has really grown into the host role, and does rival the late night talk show hosts. He’s very charming and funny. He was trying to do Blake’s “moonwalk” type steps. The banter between Ryan and Simon is a little weird though–it’s like there’s some kind of sexual tension there–ewwww!

    Is it wrong that I want to keep Sanjaya around just to see what he does in the next few weeks? I really hope there are no more weeping tweens on the next episodes. Once again I ask, who was she? Did she win some contest or something, or just a random audience member? I hope I don’t look like that at Taylor’s Columbus concert. A weeping 42-yr old monkbot borders on the psychotic.

  17. leejolem Says:

    I’m confused–Chris gave a shout out to Dave? I didn’t hear it. Who is Dave? Chris’ secret blog is pretty funny. Anybody understand the Dave reference?

  18. Shelley Says:

    another great write-up in EW…this one tells more about Crying Girl

    http://popwatch.ew.com/popwatch/2007/03/one_the_scene_i.html#more

  19. nolagirl Says:

    leejolem – Dave is the guy who runs Vote for the Worst.

  20. Hatson Says:

    Shelley, As Long As He Needs Me is from “OLIVER”. I love Ms Doolittles’ voice, but on the superficial side, well the elephant in the room as we say here is that she is not attractive to watch. There I said it. How important is the look? We know that Ace was voted off before Elliot, but is there a double standard for the ladies? Just pondering……………………..

  21. ridearoundsally Says:

    Ackkk I fart in their British direction!

  22. Claire Says:

    I HAVE A CRUSH ON RYAN SEACREST!!

    there, i said it……

  23. Shelley Says:

    Hatson…though I see where you’re coming from…I actually find Melinda to be a cutie. True, she’s not a Kat McPhee…but she emotes so well on stage that I’m usually pretty enthralled by her performances.

    I do wish more coaching/work would go toward minimizing the look of her “hunch” and “no neck.” Those things may not be totally fixable…but if you’ll notice, when she’s NOT performing, they aren’t as noticeable.

    Oh…and when she sang “I’m a Woman” I thought she was a firecracker! True confession time…I’ve watched that performance at GoFish like 7 times! Ha.

  24. ridearoundsally Says:

    Um..Im kinda glad they showed Sanjayas sister in the audience, I was beginning to think it was one in the same person..you know..the michael/janet thingy. But only on a scarier level of Psyco.

  25. Shelley Says:

    great write-up in the sombrero thread sally.

    y’all need to check it out…she has really nice pictures! 😉

  26. leejolem Says:

    NOLA, thanks!! I can’t believe he thanked the wurster king. Wow, that took guts. I wonder if the judges knew what he was doing.

  27. shrewspeaks Says:

    Sally…thanks for mentioning the Lamadamadingdong Family….did anyone else think “My, there are a few tattas out there supporting the boy”?

    Off to read Sall’s writeup.

  28. HicksChick4Soul Says:

    OMG!!!! My mouth litterally dropped when Sunjaya (or however you spell it) performed…It was rather shocking. Luckily last night’s show was definitely the best so far! But there’s one thing that saddens me…I don’t think that this year’s top 12 are nearly as good, entertaining, or diverse as last seasons. Maybe there just as good, but I don’t see myself getting emotionally attached to any of them at all like I did last year with Taylor, Elliot, Ace, Paris, Mandissa, (even Chris), and the others…I don’t know…I may be crazy….but I think last year was AI top year…

  29. nolagirl Says:

    Shrew, YES I noticed the tatas! I didn’t know who in the hell they belonged too, but it sure was befuddling.

  30. Quossum Says:

    Yes, a poster at Worst dared Chris to say “Hi, Dave” while standing next to Ryan after the singing, and wouldn’t ya know he actually *did it?* ROFL

    I don’t know if it was such a wise move, but the Worsters are in love now.

    –Q

  31. nolagirl Says:

    I figured that was the story, Q! Pretty funny. Did they lure him to Worst or did he already know of it?

  32. Quossum Says:

    We think he pretty much *has* to be reading the site. He has a “secret blog” too, ya’ know. Written by a fan, of course, not by him–that would be totally against his contract.

    http://chris-sligh.blogspot.com/

    –Q

  33. patrickkaddiddlehopper Says:

    Four words….Haley….SCAAAAAARRR-hot-OOOOOO…..B-to the-lake…..Lewis.

  34. Quossum Says:

    Hot pants do not a good singer make. {scowls}

    –Q

  35. Dr. Bob Says:

    The night was weird. Sorry, but Sanjaya gave me the creeps, and I did not like Ashley crying, and I got woozy watching Chris S. go through the crowd, and no one was interesting.

    Except Lulu, because To Sir, With Love is one of my favorite movies. Of. All. Time. I wanted to be Lulu, because I was in love with Sidney Poitier. I think I still am …

  36. Shelley Says:

    patrickkadiddlehopper…ROfL @ B to the Lake.

    Good one.

  37. ivoryhut Says:

    Dr. Bob, does anyone ever fall out of love with Sidney Poiter?

    All day To Sir, With Love has been playing in my head. Did Lulu sing it last night? I hope not, because someone said she was pitchy all over the place …

  38. Dr. Bob Says:

    Ivory — you don’t ever stop loving Sidney.

    As to Lulu, she did and it was, but golly, she looked great. I still want to be her.

  39. rowan Says:

    Dr Bob and Ivory:yep – Sidney was indeed the biz. Sigh!

    Have to cringe at this point, tho, cos I did once actually have a brief crush on Peter Noone. Okay…was about eleven at the time, but still…O_o

    I do really love To Sir With Love – one of my faves too, and loved Lulu’s raw and heartfelt rendition of the title song. Subsequently, tho, have always been kind of ambivalent about her. That is circumspection in a big way, really. Lulu I do not dig. Sally – noticed your Python-esque comment towards Pete and Lu (hee hee) and wonder if your antagonism is somewhat similar to mine. I guess I kind of lost sympathy with her in the 70’s when she ditched her Scots accent. Still, have to admit, tho, that last time I saw her, as my granny would say, she had “worn well”, and was looking good. Perhaps my *schadenfreude* at the thought of her being pitchy tonight has something to do with the fact that she is a good skelp older than me, but has nicer hair and skin and is much thinner….

    *dedicated to Leejolem*. I like the way that the German language sums up in this one word a feeling it would take me about twelve words to describe in English.

  40. leejolem Says:

    Rowan, thanks for the dedication. Ya gotta love the German language. Check out the other thread for my comment on you and PN.

    Just how old is Lulu anyway? She’s gotta be 60 don’t ya think? Her skin looks great, and she was working that outfit last night. Pretty strong pipes still, but I think Randy would have told her she was a little pitchy.

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