Archive for March 27th, 2007

Sanjaya Ain’t No Irlene…But Jordin’s a Little Bit Rock & Roll

March 27, 2007

Ahh…the winds of change.

Slowly but surely my love of everything Chris Sligh is fading…and my appreciation of Jordin Sparks is growing.

I was so excited to see Gwen Stefani on American Idol last night. This was almost up there with Prince at the finale last year. I’m so glad to see such an awesomely contemporary artist on the show. Plus…could Gwenie be ANY cuter? (The answer is resoundingly, “NO!”)

Okay…on to the competition.

LaKisha Jones looked fabulous and, predictably, sang well. However, other than her rockin’ dress, she really didn’t grab me. I think she could have made Donna Summer’s “Let’s Dance” more her own. She’s slipping in my esteem. She’s still fab…but she needs to infuse more originality into her performances. She’ll be staying, though.

Chris Sligh tackled The Police’s “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic” and, keeping it real, dawg…every little thing he did was tragic. He was off beat and sounded labored on the vocals. The beauty of that song is its edginess and pensiveness. He missed all of that and gave a karaoke performance (I’m channeling Simon, I guess). Terrible. He got ripped by judges, and even HE knew it was pretty stinky. For the first time this season, Chris is in danger of being in bottom two.

Let me preface this next recap by saying I HATE THE PRETENDERS AND CRISSY HYNDE. However, Gina Glocksen made their song, “I’ll Stand By You,” more than just bearable for me. She deserved this victory this week. She was on her game and made what could have been an awful song choice really shine. She’s safe.

Now…Sanjaya

Never before in the history of television has there been someone so painful to watch…not even Irlene Mandrell on the drums. I’m putting out a plea for decency from Vote for the Worst…please, please, please put this boy (and me) out of his (my) misery. Stop backing him and let him go home and comb out his fauxhawk. Look, the kid has a sweet little voice and a 1,000 megawatt smile, but he lacks the confidence on stage to sing with gusto…with power…with lungs full of air.

However, all that said…and because I know VFTW will never back down (I wouldn’t respect them if they did)…Sanjaya will be here to torment America (and me) another week. I’d put money on that.

My baby brother’s favorite contestant now that Antonella Barba is gone is Haley Scarnato…or as Cooper calls her…Haley Scar-HOT-o. Here’s what I have to say about her take on one of my all-time favorite songs, “True Colors”…her legs are nice. The idea of singing to a lone guitar was a good start…but it didn’t take long for her to crap it with her Disney Princess rendition of this classic. I think Jasmine-Ariel-Belle Scar-NOT-o will be going home this week…that is, unless Cooper manages to scrape together enough allowance to pay all his friends to vote for her. Sorry Coop.

It would take a phenomenal singer with a raw and powerful and emotive voice to tackle “Every Breath You Take”…a singer, say, like Sting. Phil Stacey is no Sting, sir. I didn’t like it. I don’t like him. I want him to go home…but he’ll be staying for a while longer, I think.

For the first time in this competition Mindy Doo disappointed me. Don’t get me wrong…she sounded great…and I loved the flip ‘do. But for her to come out and sing Donna Summer’s “Heaven Knows” was sadly predictable. I think Melinda should have chosen a Police song…a Cure song…or even a No Doubt song. I think that would have shown a versatile side to her. However, she’s safe this week.

Blake Lewis took on The Cure’s “Love Song.” I loved the arrangement and his coolness. I also LOVED his hair. Bama pointed out to me that 311 covered this song with this arrangement…so it wasn’t truly Blake’s interpretation. However it WAS his performance…and he owned it. I also loved that he didn’t beatbox. He’s pacing himself well in this competition. Well done. He’s definitely safe.

Jordin Sparks took on “Hey, Baby” and did great. This song was tough for the live band (it really needs more studio work)…but Miss Sparks kicked it out of the park (even with her couple of rough notes). However, that outfit looked like she plucked it right out of Pippi Longstocking’s closet. Hideous. She’s not only safe…I think she elevated her appeal this week.

Last but kinda least was Chris Richardson…who did “Don’t Speak.” He started strong…but the arrangement was a mess. I hated the key change because the minute-long song didn’t build enough to really hit the change with power. He did okay…but there were too many pitch problems and lack of breath support. I still like the guy, though, and think he’s safe for another week.

Entertainment Weekly’s take on the night.

Okay…before I give y’all the floor to discuss AI…I have to mention a couple of other fiascos from last night…”Dancing with the Stars” and “The Great American Dream Vote.”

As for “Dancing with the Stars”…I only have this to say…

HOW CAN AMERICA SEND PRECIOUS PAULINA HOME AND KEEP SHANDY POOPHEAD ON TO DANCE ANOTHER WEEK?!?!?!

This country has no sense of whimsy.

And why for the love of all that’s right in this world did I sit through an entire hour of “The Great American Dream Vote”?

I should have turned it off as soon as Donny Osmond walked out and tried to convince me to take seriously a man who has a beautiful girlfriend but wants a full head of hair…or the man who wants to run a chicken amusement park…or…the former pageant queen mother of a little girl who, at 12, has had a “lifelong dream” of being a Miss America.

And if that wasn’t creepy enough, the little girl made her pitch to win her dream by saying she is a champion for kids with cancer (nice) and has had “several girls buried in her crowns” (gulp). The sentiment is nice but the bluntness of a 12-year-old saying such a thing while standing in front of her crowns and trophies actually overloaded my Creep-o-Meter.

If there is any justice in the world…tomorrow night, when the show airs at its regularly scheduled time, Donny will jump on stage and shove the dream candidates out of the way. He’ll then pull Marie (who’s been sitting at home twiddling her thumbs since “Celebrity Duets”) from behind a curtain…and they’ll launch into their old routines…complete with bedazzled outfits.

Then Irlene will play a drum solo.

Man…television used to really rock. (But I still rock for managing to start a post with Gwen Stefani and end it with Irlene Mandrell.)

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