MUSIC by Kt Tunstall, “Black Horse and a Cherry Tree”
“I’ll never let you go, if you promise not to fade away.”
Favorite Male Artists:
Favorite Female Artists:
Allison Iraheta made it into the top 12 (which later turned out to be top 13) in week 2 of the competition, singing Alone” by Heart. We indicated then we were quite impressed because the song is such an icon that it is hard to do well without being compared to the original and Allison did it amazingly well and outperformed some past Idols that had attempted to sing it.
Allison auditioned in San Francisco. She sang “Natural Woman” by Aretha Franklin and that pushed her through to Hollywood.
This isn’t Allison’s first competition. She has proven to be a winner in prior battles, winning “Quinceanera,” a Telemundo reality show. She took home the $50,000 prize, which included a recording contract.
Allison began singing at age 5 and also enjoys playing the guitar. She currently lives in Downey, California and is originally from Sherman Oaks, California. At age 16, Allison is the youngest performer this year to reach the final 13. Her parents are from El Salvador. When asked about her age as a factor, Allison calmly stated, “We’re all here for the same thing and it depends on how much we want it,” Allison’s trademark feature is her flame-red hair which makes her incredibly memorable. If she can continue to perform at the caliber she did to make the finals, she will be giving this elite group of challengers a run for their money.
Latest AI Interview Top 36
Introducing Allison in Hollywood Week
Allison with Jun’ot Joyner Top 36 Round
“Alone” by Heart Encore
“When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.”
– Jimi Hendrix
Favorite Male Artists:
Michael Jackson, Freddie Mercury, Lenny Kravitz, David Bowie
Favorite Female Artists:
katy Perry, Pink, Christina Aguilera, Lady Gaga, Beyonce, Goldfrapp, Madonna
Many American Idol Contestants, among which are such memorable Idol performers as Fantasia, Diana DeGarmo, Constantine Maroulis, Frenchie Davis, Clay Aiken and Taylor Hicks have found their way to the Broadway stage. Adam Lambert did things in reverse, performing in the Broadway Production Wicked in Los Angeles before auditioning for Idol. Adam played Fiyero.
Wicked wasn’t Adam’s first professional stint. Prior to joining Wicked, he performed in The Ten Commandments as “Joshua” at the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles. Lambert’s Idol audition was broadcast on the Jan. 20 show from San Francisco, and he sang Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” to get a unanimous pass to Hollywood. In later weeks he sang a Cher tune though and the likeness in his voice to that of Cher combined with his make up made us worry about his apparent penchant to be a female impersonator.
To get to the final 12, Adam belted out a screamingly ostentatious version of The Rolling Stones’ “Satisfaction,” to which we said, the scream is back! Adam can scream, with ease, and that is an incredibly difficult feat for most singers. His scream is on par with Stephen Tyler and Roger Daltry who identified their songs with powerful screams.
Some very risqué photos of Adam tongue-ing it up with his favorite boy toy kind of left us wondering if his image is what Idol is really looking for at this point. The images which we are not even publishing here- were intended to be private on his social network page, but it is questionable putting pictures like this up on any web page at all. Adam has talent, but is America willing to buy into his sexually explicit image? We are not sure and it could be a problem for Adam going forward. Adam is 27 years old and is from Los Angeles, California.
We found a fan site for Adam here.
Latest AI Interview
Top 36 Interview with Stevie Wright
Elimination Night with Nick Mitchell and Encore of “Satisfaction”
So, the finalists of American Idol are all chosen, and it was left to the judges to decide the fate of those that were chosen for the wild card competition. We question many comments by the judges and feel they were off the mark tonight.
Our calls for each performance are below (Listen to the audio performances at the end of this post):
1. Jesse Langseth, Rufus & Chaka Khan, “Tell Me Something Good” — Jesse got down deep on this song, bringing out a very sexy and soulful set. We got into it and loved this performance. Her only flaw was
having to go first, which is hard on any performer. She pulled off a great performance with a professional feel.
2. Matt Giraud, Jackson Five, “Who’s Loving You” — After last week, Matt had nowhere to go but up. His performance last week should have been his death nell. Matt brought it this week with some very nice solid riffs and got us smiling a bit, so we give him credit for bringing back what he is good at. Sad to say that when the real competition hits, he won’t be able to pick and choose only the blues.
3. Megan Joy Corkrey, KT Tunstall, “Black Horse And The Cherry Trees” — You know, we like Megan and wanted her through to the final 12 on her last performance. This week was cute and fun because the song is cute and fun. She looked great, but she was flat and the song shows no range. She was also incredibly off key many times throughout the song. We like this song, but she didn’t do it well. She looked great doing it though and was entertaining.
4. Von Smith, Elton John, “Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word” — There has been way too much Elton John in this show this year. And we think Von could have picked something less cliche. He once again dressed shabbily and still looks like he is standing in a carnival fun house above the air blower. The beginning of the song is slow and requires strong pitch control. Von doesn’t have it. He was off key most of the first half of the song. He brought it home, but not enough for us to consider him.
5. Jasmine Murray, Christina Aguillera, “Reflection” — Jasmine tried to stretch her voice on this song and came up flat, literally. She was off key through the entire song and when she hit notes requiring strength in her vocals, they hurt our ears because she was just shouting. We did not like her performance.
6. Ricky Braddy, Stevie Wonder, “Superstition” — Now, this is a hard song to sing, not so much because we think Stevie is the end-all be-all, but because it is so well known.An If you don’t nail it and if you are off key, people will pick it up immediately. Ricky sang it great. He hit every note with ease and performed it wonderfully. Our only criticism is Ricky’s look. He looks like a scarecrow in heat. But he can belt out a tune.
7. Tatiana Del Toro, Whitney Houston, “Saving All My Love FOr You” — This was like deja vu all over again. Tatiana has done this tune three times in the competition and it is getting old. She did fine, her voice is quite powerful, and she is enjoyable to listen too, but she overstayed her welcome with this tune.
8. Anoop Desai, Bobby Brown, “My Prerogative” — Anoop has been a favorite of ours, so we were expecting him to excel. He did not. The song is a repeat, of a prior performance. He was flat nearly throughout the song and it is a silly song for a geek to sing. We did not like Anoop this week.
Our Scores for the performers are based on how they performed, not on the judges choices. THey are based on reality not practiced and already wrote decisions by the judges. We will list the group in reverse order of our overall score. We know the results already, but the judges were well off the mark on most of the talent this week.
1. Jasmine Murray (5/10)
2. Tatiana Del Toro (6/10)
3. Anoop Desai (6/10)
4. Von Smith (6/10)
5. Ricky Braddy (7/10)
6. Megan Joe Corkrey (7/10)
7. Matt Giraud (7/10)
8. Jesse Langseth (8/10)
The judges robbed two great talents tonight and, for some reason unknown to us, placed two people through that just aren’t very good and did not deserve to be in the final 12. We have no idea what they were thinking. Our top 4 clearly outperformed the others, and would have brought more talent to the final 12 than the judges’ selections.
Our opinion? The judges had already judged. It was over before the fat lady sang, and probably before she knew what she was going to sing. We think that is a a shame.
The performer we feel the worst about is Jesse Langseth. She put in an excellent performance and was better than most in this show by a country mile. She was, quite honestly, robbed. The judges comments after her set were off the market and just plain not relevant.
Similarly, Ricky was unjustly eliminated, and we get the impression there were other factors than talent in this decision by the judges.
The judges tried a surprise twist by putting through four instead of three because they couldn’t make up their minds.
Their choices were Jasmine Murray, Anoop Desai, Megan Joe Corkrey, and Matt Giraud. That rounds out your final 13 for only 12 stools. Jasmine will go quickly. Anoop needs to go back to prior performances to determine what made him worth listening to; tonight he was not good and incredibly lucky. But Matt and Megan deserve to be here and we look forward to hearing them again.
We hope the judges will judge the remainder of the competition based on talent instead of whatever commercial factors they are considering when devising their very scripted and obviously rehearsed judging…
Audio Performances at the Bottom of this post.
There are some weeks where things just aren’t that cut and dry. The first two weeks, we were left with a clear top 2 that we knew were going to the finals. The standouts were just that. This week, we are not sure.
We are also confused because the judges were often off the mark tonight, but let’s get started and let the chips fall where they may.
1. Von Smith – “You’re All I Need to Get By”, Marvin Gaye — We give Von credit on this song. He has been a shouter and he is doing his best to control it. He did a commendable job. The judges liked the performance and so did we. He hit every note, he wasn’t pitchy and he got us listening. Problem, his look is atrocious. Red sneakers and orange reddish T-Shirt under a suit jacket and hair that makes him look like he was at the fun house in a carnival.
2. Taylor Vaifanua, ” If I Ain’t Got You”, Alicia Keys — We like Taylor’s voice, we like Taylor’s look and we like this song, so what is the problem. We had trouble staying awake through the performance. Taylor sang it well, but the performance did nothing at all for us. The judges seemed to pretty much agree.
3. Alex Wagner-Trugman – “I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues”, Elton John — Lousy. His only hope is votefortheworst.com.
4. Arianna Afsar – “The Winner Takes It All”, Abba — This was a no-go from note one. Arianna could not find her voice, and despite being “cute as a button” was unable to pull off this song. She should be doing teen pop and instead chose a song we would picture being on at the local retirement home. Dull, off key, nonsense.
5. Ju’not Joyner – “Delilah”, Plain White T’s — This is a song we love and believe has the potential of becoming a classic that lasts for years. The judges perplexed us with their call on Joyner; they praised him. They were listening to their IPOD, not Joyner. He butchered this song. He should be ashamed about what he did to the song and the judges either were tone deaf for this one song or had some vested interest in promoting it.
6. Kristen McNamara – “Gimme One Reason”, Tracy Chapman — Kristen performed this with passion and was on pitch on every note. She gave it a fun twist and had us listening. Overall a commendable performance. Lousy outfit.
7. Nathaniel Marshall – “I Would Do Anything For Love”, Meatloaf — Better than Alex. Not by much.
8. Felicia Barton – “No One”, Alicia Keys — Felicia nailed this performance. She was dressed in a killer outfit with a Demi Moore look. Simon thought she looked like Alicia. She sang this with the best of them on this show and we feel it was the best female performance of the night, but the judges did not agree.
9. Scott MacIntyre – “Mandolin Rain”, Bruce Hornsby — Scott may have some talent instrumentally, but he isn’t that great vocally and that is what this is about. The judges gave a patronizing round of sympathy praise, and it was pathetic. Scott could get through on America’s sympathy, but it would be a shame to eliminate a true talent in favor of one that is just not in the same league. He was pitchy throughout and butchered most of the song.
10. Kendall Beard – “This One’s For The Girls”, Martina McBride — This is a fun and energetic country tune and it defines Kendall’s style. It wasn’t very original, but it was a commendable copy of the original. It may differentiate her among the country fans in America which makes her a tough call because they love their country (see Kelly Pickler and Carrie Underwood).
11. Jorge Nunez – “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me”, Elton John — Two Elton tunes in one night but this one was done right. Jorge nailed it and his voice was the best male vocal of the night. We are just not sure his vocal can get past his look, which is just not that of a star. We hate to say that matters, but it does.
12. Lil Rounds – “Be Without You”, Mary J. Blige — We don’t get Lil Rounds nickname. While she is round, she ain’t little. And her performance wasn’t either. Strong vocals, and we heard the judges screaming their praise. Going last and getting praise from the judges makes her a shoe in, but we thought Felicia Barton was better tonight, but it was close.
So, the top 3 are ridiculously tough for us to call. We don’t agree with the judges, and we think appearance will have a bunch to do with the selection. But we can easily pick those that are at the bottom.
12. Alex Wagner-Trugman (2/10)
11. Arianna Afsar (2/10)
10. Nathaniel Marshall (3/10)
9. Ju’not Joyner (4/10)
8. Scott MacIntyre (5/10)
7. Taylor Vaifanua (6/10)
6. Kendall Beard (7/10)
5. Kristen McNamara (7/10)
4. Von Smith (7/10)
3. Jorge Nunez (8/10)
2. Lil Rounds (8/10)
1. Felicia Barton (8/10)
That leaves our top three as Felicia Barton, Lil Rounds and Jorge Nunez. The judges had other ideas, but did agree with us somewhat. They were way off on Ju’not and Scott.
We also have our reservations because, as you can see, there is a tight cluster of top performers. If there were more country fans, Kendall could burst to the front. Or Von Smith may do better than we think. It is a tight race, but we can’t do the sympathy vote for Scott like the judges did; he just was not up to snuff for this competition, and if me makes it, even his keyboard won’t save him.
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