American Idol Season 14 Top 8 Guys Perform

5 03 2015

1385015_10154925704030601_1985407597453397698_nThe results are in for the guys and four of them are going home. But first Aretha Franklin sings “I Will Survive.” I amazed how much weight she has lost. Not only is Ryan NOT in a suit, but he lets Aretha say, “This is American Idol.” I think that is a first for the show, isn’t it? Outside of that first season when there were two hosts?

The theme tonight is Motown. The first person going through is Daniel Seavey. He sings “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) by Marvin Gaye. He is adorable, but the stage just swallows him up. It was an okay performance. Nothing about it blew me away. Keith said it was a good song for him to do. Jennifer felt he was more relaxed and having fun. She felt the song was a little bit low for him. She thinks he is going to be a favorite. Harry said they all know he is adorable, extremely talented and a gifted musician. He gave him good pointers on how he needs to feel what the band is doing with the beat. Let the band dictate what his body does. I really like the advice they give.

The next person making it through to the top 8 is Mark Andrew. He performs “Papa Was a Rolling Stone” by The Temptations. I liked that he changed up the beat on the verses and stayed true to the song. He was a great performance. No goosebumps, but a great performance. Jennifer loves his voice but she didn’t think that song in that way was moving her. Harry thinks his strong point is his voice. He liked the arrangement but it felt like a jam-band arrangement. He thought it was fine. Keith agrees with Jennifer about the arrangement but he loves the fact that America voted for him because they hear something in his voice and see something in him.

Rayvon Owen advances to the top 8. He sings the classic “My Girl” by The Temptations. I enjoy his voice. I think the vocals keep improving as they call new names. I thought this was the best so far tonight. I got close to goosebumps. I did have some eye closing and shaking my head thinking “oh that’s sweet!” Harry thought it was great. He also has such a nice presence. (I agree—he always seems to light up the stage). Harry wants to see the other side, too (the opposite of nice and sweet). Keith said he knew what Harry was saying—just a little more weight in the performance. He can hear a happy guy and it comes across great but he is interested to see what he is going to do next. Jennifer felt like when he went into the falsettos and hit those high notes he really made the song his own.

I am now worried. They are almost halfway through the names and Savion Wright’s name hasn’t been called yet. I think next year they should just let America decide all the names. Don’t make it an even split in gender. The guys are better this year and they should have more of the spots and more of the ladies go home.

With now half the names being called, Adam Ezegelian is called next to be part of the top 8. He sings “I Want You Back” by the Jackson 5. This was a bad arrangement. He did make the song his own, but it had issues (for me). Keith thought it was the perfect song for him. Jennifer thought he did a good job on the song. Harry said he nailed every note, so good job.

Scott Borchetta will be a mentor this year. He launched the careers of people like Taylor Swift. Scott thinks Clark Beckham is the best singer the boys have this year. And a nice segue in because Clark has made it into the top 8. He sings “The Tracks of My Tears” by Smokey Robinson & The Miracles. This is now my new favorite of the night. That gave my goosebumps. Jennifer agrees with Scott that he has one of the best voices in Idol this year. Now he has to let loose and feel it. She thinks he could go all the way. Harry thinks he is really talented. One thing that was lacking was a beginning, middle and end. He had strategic things but it just stopped in the middle. Keith said he would have just sung that song without the band and broken everybody’s hearts. He’s got the skills to do that, just don’t be afraid.

Nick Fradiani is next. This only leaves two more spots. He chooses “Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I’m Yours)” by Stevie Wonder. Nick starts without the band and I’m not sure I’m going to like it, but then they join in and I’m relieved. It was a decent performance. I like his voice. But at this point I’m so depressed that there are only two spots and there are four guys I like still sitting in the audience which sucks (Savion, Qaasim, Quentin, and Trevor). Harry thought it was strong and a great arrangement. Harry encourages him to smile more on these kinds of songs. Keith felt like it might have been better not to have the guitar on that particular song because he wanted to see him move more. Jennifer felt it was a good job.

Qaasim Middleton makes it through. He sings “I Wish” by Stevie Wonder. He has great dance moves. I think he should have danced a bit less and sang a little bit more on point. The problem with his crazy arrangements is that you can’t tell if his singing is off key or not. Keith said it was so good and seeing him perform in front of an audience is what it is all about. Having an audience is where he lives and breathes. Jennifer said he is so damn funky it is crazy. He owns that stage. But she wants them to know how great he sings, too. Don’t forget about the vocals. Harry didn’t think he lost the vocal at all and thought it was extremely good. Every single run was right on the money. He said they get asked “What are you looking for?” THAT is what they are looking for.

Only one more name. This really sucks. I say let’s take two more of the girls’ spots for the guys. I’m in tears. Savion is not going through. Savion deserves it and I don’t know if he can come back again next year. But Quentin Alexander had the stand-out performance last week and he advances (and deserves it). I really want two of the girls’ spots. It’s not right. Stevie Wonder songs are popular tonight and Quentin chooses “Master Blaster (Jammin’).” I like that he interacts with the band. I believe he had the standout performance once again. Jennifer it was so smooth and so perfect. It proves why he was the last one to be picked. He is one of her favs. Harry liked how he settled into the groove of that. Keith said he knows who he is. He knows it was a bulls-eye.

American Idol– Change your format. It is ridiculous that you feel it is still necessary to have to be an even number of girls and guys going through to the top 12. Don’t we want our most talented people in that top 12? If you are allowing American to vote for the top 12 guys and top 12 girls, then let us make those decisions across the board. After all, when they win, they will have to compete with talent across the board, not just in their gender.





American Idol Season 14 Top 12 Girls Perform

27 02 2015

1385015_10154925704030601_1985407597453397698_nTonight the top 12 girls of Season 14 perform in Detroit. First to perform is Lovey James. She sings “Love Runs Out” by OneRepublic. It was a very, very rough start. Her low range is a hard place for her. I didn’t care for it. Jennifer thought it was a great start. Harry thought it was a strong job. Keith said it got better and better as the song went on (so that made it great). Again, where is the critical feedback so they can learn?

Adanna Duru is next. I’ve had mixed feelings about her along the way. She is singing “Rather Be” by Clean Bandit featuring Jess Glynne. I applaud her effort to make it sound different, but it was not good either. Sorry. Keith thought it was a really good performance. Jennifer thought she was going for blood. She said she will learn when she gets that excited to learn how to stay in control. Harry said when it got loud it got slightly out of control. However, the first part of that tune was the best he’s actually heard her sing. He called her dangerous.

Ohio native Alexis Gomez is next. She sings “Gunpowder and Lead” by Miranda Lambert. I don’t like country music, but that is MUCH better. The show for me starts here. That was excellent. Harry said she is so lovely and talented, but he doesn’t remember having a twang like that. He cautions her about it because it made her sound like she was imitating the record. That is a valid point. Keith loved it. He said when she isn’t comfortable playing the guitar, get rid of it. Jennifer loved it and loves her.

Joey Cook brings her accordion to the stage. I think this may not be a smart move for Idol.  That will only last so long before a judge says something about it.  She sings “Somebody Like You” by Keith Urban. That’s brave. Keith is laughing and clapping. I don’t know what the original sounds like. She has such a wonderfully unique voice. She is so quirky, too. Keith is standing up. Jennifer says to him, “I bet you never heard the song like that.” Keith lets out a “wooooo.” Jennifer said that was all of the best things about her—incredibly unique. Harry said that if Keith and he ever had a kid that is what the music would sound like. Keith said it was fantastic. She took a song and made it hers.

Katherine Winston goes next singing “Safe and Sound” by Taylor Swift featuring The Civil Wars. It was a little bumpy during those first few notes but I love her voice. Keith said it was really nice but don’t forget to feel as she is singing. Jennifer said she has a magical quality to her voice and it is special. Harry thinks she is a phenomenal vocalist but questions her song choice with respect to the show (by singing ballads)? What? Other people sing ballads. When has this been a problem? She is getting all my votes tonight just because of that bizarre comment from Harry.

Shannon Berthiaume sings “Who Knew” by P!NK. It was not good. When it speeded up, she did not keep up with the band. Oh my—make it stop. Harry said they have seen a lot of polish especially from the guys who look like they belong there. One nice thing is the fact that she is so green but that novelty is going to wear off so she needs to be more energetic and more committed to the lyrics and things like that. Keith said that P!NK is such a phenomenal singer. Her songs sound like anyone could sing them but they can’t. He did not think it was a good song choice. Jennifer said they (Harry and Keith) hit it on the nose and she is a phenomenal singer and she is here because of that.

Loren Lott sings “Note to God” by Charice. It already sounds flat when she starts. Then I liked it for awhile. Then I think I didn’t like it again. I went back and forth about it the whole entire song. Jennifer said it was very brave and good job. Harry said it was powerful. Keith said it was good and she was going to give them a run for their money.

I was looking forward to Shi Scott’s performance. She choses “Umbrella” by Rihanna. I think this was a bad song choice. Keith said it was powerful, gutsy, and it was a bold performance but she didn’t get him with that song choice. Jennifer said they didn’t get the best of her with that song. Harry said she is very talented but it wasn’t the right song for her.

Another country girl is Maddie Walker. She sings Shania Twain’s “Love Gets Me Every Time.” Parts of it were fine; parts were not, but not horribly so. There were moments when she was just under the note. Harry says that sometimes her voice sounds a lot older than she is. He thought it was a good solid performance. Keith said that out of all the Shania songs that particular one is not great to show off her abilities but there is a character in her voice that is compelling. Jennifer agrees. She didn’t think it was the right song to pick on the first night to wow America.

Sarina-Joi Crowe picks “Mamma Knows Best” by Jessie J to sing. This gave me goosebumps. I was grinning from ear to ear. She is going to go far in the competition. Jennifer said she rivaled Jessie J on that song. It was pretty impressive. Harry said that was really, really strong. Keith said it was the perfect combination of loose and tight. It was right on point.

Jax is another one of my favorites. She chooses to sing “Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down) by Nancy Sinatra. Goosebumps again. That was fantastic. Keith loved it. He loves her artistry and originality. Jennifer said they are so lucky to have her this year. Harry agrees and that she is one to watch. Two powerhouse performances in a row.

Tyanna Jones is another favorite. She sings “Lips Are Movin” by Meghan Trainor. It was a rough start. I think she was nervous. When she got to the chorus it got better. But it seemed like she was just under the note. I’d love to see her sing a Janelle Monae song. It was solid. Harry said she is in the ridiculously talented category. Keith said don’t be afraid to tell the band you can sing something in a slightly higher key. Jennifer said for her to just be her. There is something beautiful about her and her voice is from God himself.

The guys are much stronger this year. I had a hard time yesterday picking four for my bottom guys; I don’t have a problem here with the ladies. My bottom girls are Lovey James, Adanna Duru, Shannon Berthiaume, and Maddie Walker. My top favorites were, in order, Sarina-Joi Crowe, Jax, Tyanna Jones, Joey Cook and Katherine Winston tied for the next spot.





American Idol Season 14 Top 12 Boys Perform

26 02 2015

1385015_10154925704030601_1985407597453397698_nAmerican Idol goes on a road trip. Instead of Hollywood, they will sing in Detroit for the next two weeks. I really like that they will have a larger audience to perform for instead of the small studio group. This week they will perform and then we vote. Next week the top 24 becomes the top 16. There is no theme form this round; they can choose whatever song they like.

Adam Ezegelian is up first singing “I Wanna Rock” by Twisted Sister. What a great way to start the show and get people energized. He should more of these type songs. It was terrific. Jennifer said his performance was contagious. Harry said they sometimes take themselves way too seriously. His performance is what rock and roll was all about and the fact that he can sing makes it work. Keith jokes about how much he loves those heart-aching ballads.

Slow-dancer, farmer Michael Simeon sings “How Am I Supposed To Live Without You” by Michael Bolton. I enjoyed his performance too. He played to the crowd by bending on his knee to get closer to the ladies. Harry cautioned him to try to sing in tune (there were just a few notes off that I heard) but thought he did a good job. Jennifer liked the feeling of the whole thing. Keith thought his performance was really good. He stayed in the moment and controlled it. He felt he would be hearing more from him.

Our local Savion Wright was featured next singing one of Joey Guerra’s least favorite songs, “Hey, Soul Sister” by Train. Goosebumps! I happen to like this song and loved his interpretation. There were a few notes off but I am okay with that. Harry said it started unfocused but as it went on it seemed to focus more. Jennifer loves his unique style. She reminds him to pay attention to the camera. Keith wasn’t sure about that song choice playing to his strengths.

Mark Andrew takes the stage singing “The Weight” by The Band. I loved this too. Gosh this is going to be tough to split up my votes. Keith said it was the perfect song for his voice. Harry agreed it was the perfect song choice. Jennifer said his vibe is “so right now.”

Texan Trevor Douglas sings “Best I Ever Had” by Gavin DeGraw. I really like Trevor but it wasn’t on the same level as the other performances tonight. He was out of breath (nerves?) and he was pitchy dawg. Keith said the song got on top of him but his visual performance and energy was palpable. Jennifer said this was an okay day for him. Harry thought the vocal was not as good as the performance was.

Clark Beckham is one of my favorites too. Tonight he sings “When A Man Loves A Woman” by Percy Sledge. Beginning was a little rough. Too many runs that were in key. But he found a rhythm. There were a few notes that were off. Keith was on his feet. Jennifer said “goosies all day.” Harry said he is extremely talented. Keith said it was killer.

Rayvon Owen performs “Jealous” by Nick Jonas. His falsetto was rough in most places. He sounded out of breath. It’s hard to sing and dance or walk around the stage. Harry thought it was strong and a good song choice. Jennifer reminded him be needed to look into the camera to connect with the audience at home. She was looking for a little more attitude with the song. Keith thought showing his falsetto was a good thing.

The youngest competitor Daniel Seavey chose yet another Jason Mraz song “I’m Yours”. His voice is really suited for Jason’s songs but I wish he would branch out a bit more. He has the talent. He looks a little scared. It was rough when I compare him to the others. He might be safe because of the ‘tween factor”. Jennifer said he needs to be consistent throughout the song. Harry thought he did a nice job. Keith likes his look, the mandolin and he thought it was a good song for him. His camera comments after the performance was adorable. He got excited hearing people scream his name, he was anxious because his mom was here, etc.

Riley Bria makes his way to the stage. He sings “Homeboy” by Eric Church. It started off rough but he found his groove. Again I think nerves are getting to some of the less experienced contestants tonight. The end of the song was rough, too. He has talent; he wouldn’t be there unless he did. But, he is not in the same league as some of the others. The teens love him. Jennifer says she loves his combination of sweet and edgy. She hopes he connected with America because he belongs there. Harry feels that way, too. Harry makes a joke that Riley reminds him of Keith Urban that he might have to start calling him Keith Suburban. Keith is glad he did an Eric Church song and he can’t wait to hear more.

At this point, the judges have not had any constructive criticism for any of the contestants. With four of them going home, this might be the only time they are going to get that. Of course, the judges might be hearing something different there than we do at home.

New Orleans contestant Quentin Alexander channels a Lenny Kravitz vibe in his demeanor. He sings “I Put A Spell On You” by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins. His performance immediately drew me in. I definitely got goosebumps from head to toe. Harry says he has a different presentation all across the board and he hopes America gives him a chance to stay. Harry thinks they will find a great artist in there who is brave choices. Harry thought it was great. Jennifer felt that was what performing is to her. It has drama and dynamics, the vocals, the way he looks, the whole thing. It’s emotional. It was perfect. It was one of his great performances. Keith said he hasn’t made a record yet and that was a Grammy performance.

Nick Fradiani sings Ed Sheeran’s popular hit “Thinking Out Loud.” It sounded very much like the original. I did get goosebumps but to a lesser extent. I would have liked him to change it up a bit more because he has the talent and experience to do something like that, but I really like him. Good Lord! The talent this year on Idol is extraordinary. It is going to be very hard to split my votes. Keith said it was perfect song choice and he was glad he played (guitar) and sang. Jennifer said she doesn’t want any of the guys to go home. She is very sad. Nick had a great performance. They have had a lot of great performances this evening but his was one of the best. Harry thought it was strong. (Harry makes jokes about the song—What? He’s only going to love the person until 70 and then at 71 they are getting a divorce?)

The last spot goes to Qaasim Middleton who sings “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars. I’ve seen him do better vocally. He is a wonderful performer. The song didn’t allow him to really show off his vocals. But the performance was so incredible, I didn’t care about the vocals halfway through the song. The crowd goes wild. Jennifer says he makes her want to get up and dance and sing with him. She says he is her type of performer. She just loves him. Harry says they ask them to leave it on the stage and give it all they have and that is exactly what he did. Keith said it is about standing out, making a connection, being remembered, having charisma. He killed it.

I don’t know who should be in the bottom four. Riley and Daniel should be based on the fact that the others were just better in vocals and performances. I worry for the performers who went on earlier in the evening.

The girls have their chance tomorrow. Will the girls slay it as the boys did? We will find out. Idol is off to a fantastic season. And PLEASE—if Idol is getting renewed for next year, make sure Harry, Keith and Jennifer come back again. I just love them. They are my favorites in all the years of Idol.





American Idol Season 14 Final Judgment Part 2

23 02 2015

1385015_10154925704030601_1985407597453397698_nWe left off last night with a pause in discovering Hollywood Anderson’s fate. Hollywood had a mixed experience in Hollywood, some of what could have been from his slacking off. But we tune in to find Josh Sanders approaching the judges instead. He receives a no. Jennifer says, however, that she would have been a yes as she is a real fan of his. Hmmm. Harry looked a little annoyed and does say something to her but then flicks her hair and smiles.

Now we discover the answer for Hollywood Anderson. He sounded good at the House of Blues. Keith tells him he has a real gift but it is a no this year. Judging from his face, Hollywood was expecting a yes. Obviously that makes the emotion of the moment even more difficult.

Joey Cook is showcased next singing “Sweet Pea” by Amos Lee. She has such a unique sound and I hope she receives a yes. They talk about apples and oranges and that she is the kiwi of the bunch and they don’t have any kiwi. She is so surprised.

Katherine Winston sang “Rhiannon” by Fleetwood Mac. It sounds wonderful. I especially liked the way she went up on the note for “state of mind” lyric. Jennifer felt like something magical happened when she got up to perform and she is part of the top 24.

Maddy Hudson walks the floor way to the judges. She says she didn’t anticipate the nerves she would get on stage even though she is a street performer and sings to strangers. She had a rough night at the House of Blues singing “Diamonds” by Rihanna. She sang the entire song off-key. Jennifer tells her she was a frontrunner but she needs more time to get comfortable on stage. Today is a no for going forward.

Alexis Gomez got some advice from Jennifer that she was sounding the same in every song and perhaps she should get in touch with her Mexican side or something that will help her stand out. She put a Latin twist on The Band Perry’s song “Better Dig Two”. It is nothing personal but I am not a big fan of her voice. She has the desired look for Idol and she has a country voice they also need to have a big enough mix but they were many other people with better voices who did not make it through. She makes it into the top 24.

Quentin Alexander sang “Youth” by Foxes. I have heard this song a few times. He sounded great. Keith mentions he has had some ups-and-downs in the process. They invite him into the top 24.

SAVION!!!!! Please, please let him into the top 24. I don’t know if my heart can break again. He sings “I Don’t Trust Myself (With Loving You)” by John Mayer. Goosebumps! How CRUEL!!!! A damn commercial. Keith is terrible dragging this out. Woooooooooo Hoooooooooooo! He made it through.

People we will not be seeing this year are Jaq Mackenzie and Hunter Larsen.

Mark Andrew has his last chance for Idol and having a newborn son on top of that must exert tremendous pressure. He sings “Take Me to Church” by Hozier. I have liked some of his performances but this was okay. Some spots were rough. Harry said he has a unique sound but is he different enough? He is in! As a hard-rock vibe foes, I prefer Mark over Adam. (Postnote: I just listened to the Vevo version of the full song and he did really well. It was just what Idol edited in that didn’t sound great).

I hope Trevor Douglas makes it. At the House of Blues he sings “Burning Love” by Elvis Presley. Hmmm. I don’t think that was his best song I have heard from him. But I think he has been stellar enough to have made it. Harry says they think he could have done better too. Harry says they wonder if he will have consistency. He says 16-year-olds are unpredictable. Harry is just toying with him now. He gets a spot in the top 24.

Emily Brooke has been singing for 6-1/2 “whole years” (giggles). But she has nerve doing Keith Urban’s “Stupid Boy.” It sounded rough. She did not make it through but Jennifer said she is phenomenally talented and she hopes they see her again.

Another person who only has this year to claim a spot in Idol is Nick Fradiani. He sings “Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)” by Train. He sounded great. He is in.

Sarina-Joi Crowe is next and has been at this point three times before. I got goosebumps as she sang “Big White Room” by Jessie J. This is her year!!! She is in.

Qaasim Middleton is quite the character. And he is from Brooklyn (born there baby) He sings “Satisfaction” by Allen Stone. Not only can this young man sing but he entertains as well. He had Jennifer chair-dancing. Keith and Jennifer were standing up at the end. I can just fast-forward through this because he is in. He vows to get Harry standing up by Jennifer tells him he never stands so don’t worry about that—only Keith and her stand. Hmmm I will have to check my notes on that because I think he stood up once at least.

Ricky Dale Hendricks and Riley Bria are going up against each other for the final spot. Riley performed with Keith on stage at the 2012 American Country Awards. Ricky sang “Don’t Close Your Eyes” by Alan Jackson. He seemed to be just over the note. Riley sings “Love This Pain” by Lady Antebellum. He did a better job. Riley gets the spot.

Jelly Joseph goes up against Shi Scott. Jelly had a panic attack at the House of Blues. Her song “Bang, Bang” by Jessie J, Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj. It was rough. Shi doesn’t have a lot of experience singing in public and has a lot of nerves every time she does. But when she sings the right song, she is phenomenal. She too has a unique voice. She sings “Higher Ground” by Stevie Wonder. She slays it. I think Shi has the slot. And I am right.

What an amazing top 24 with a diverse amount of talent and sounds.

 





February 20, 2015: Director Amanda Tapping’s last day! Birthday bash on Shaofu 2! A visit to the space station clinic!

21 02 2015

Originally posted on Josephmallozzi's Weblog:

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Today marked the final day of Amanda Tapping’s directing gig on Dark Matter episode #104 (pictured above with 1st Assistant Director Brandon Tataryn).

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We’re going to miss her.  And not just because she treated the cast and crew to a mobile coffee, tea, and hot chocolate stand!

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Meanwhile, Assistant Production Coordinator Travis Lowry celebrated his birthday in fine style today with streamers and balloons and a Steel Magnolias-themed cake (featuring him and the ladies).  Pictured above, the birthday boy takes a break from the festivities to pose for an Executive Producer mandated birthday photo.  Note the look in his eyes, a mixture of excitement, delight, and pure terror.

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While Travis was celebrating his birthday on Earth, the rest of the production was on Shaofu 2 for our last day on the space station!

I’m going to miss this place.  After a terrific six days in its atmospherically controlled environs, we…

View original 29 more words





American Idol Season 14 Final Judgment Part 1

19 02 2015

1385015_10154925704030601_1985407597453397698_nTwelve ladies and 12 guys will advance to the next round where America will get to vote. Their next task is to sing in front of a live audience at the House of Blues.

Michael Simeon sings a slow version of “Classic” by MTKO. He changes up the tempo (which was a smart move) and then he adds some rapping which was pretty decent. It seems that after we see their HOB performance they are cutting to the part where they learn their fate. I like that. Jennifer said it was a good performance but they saw 48 good performances. He makes it into the top 24.

The next person to learn of their fate was Loren Lott. At the House of Blues she sang “My Heart Will Go On” by Céline Dion. I think she has reverted back to singing just slightly off key and not picking the right song for her voice. Skyfall was incredible, but this was not. She says she thought it was a good performance but Harry says it wasn’t one of her best performances. The connection wasn’t there. But she still made it into the top 24 and I am speechless. I know things sound differently when you are sitting there versus us hearing it on the TV as I learned this when I attended the American Idol finale many years ago so maybe that is what is happening.

Adam Ezegelian is definitely a rocker singing “Here I Go Again” by Whitesnake. It was decent but he is no Caleb Johnson. He makes it to the top 24.

Cody Fry hoped his gamble to switch things up from ballads to an up-tempo with “Viva La Vida” by Coldplay would pay off. It didn’t sound that great. Jennifer breaks the bad news that this time it was no.

Ryan calls up Lovey James to hear her fate. She worked the stage but there was something about her voice on this song “Wings” by Little Mix that irritated me. Harry said that was the first time she had come alive, but consistency is paramount in the competition. She makes it through.

The next group was given the bad news that they did not make it to the top 24: Cosmetologist Hector Montenegro, J. None (and by default Mr. Crispy), Reno Anoa’l, Zach Kaltenbach, Hannah Mrozak.

This is the best I have heard Adanna Duru sing. She poured her heart into ‘It’s A Man’s World” by James Brown. That was goosebump-worthy. Jennifer Lopez stood up for that. She is through.

Maddie Walker sings Fergie’s “Big Girls Don’t Cry.” She sounded off pitch, just under the note. She did not make it through. But once she leaves they are wondering if they made a mistake. Rachel Hallack did not have a stellar group round but I think she sounded better than Maddie at The House of Blues. She sang “Gunpowder and Lead” by Miranda Lambert.  Jennifer says they are undecided between her and Maddie and they had a sing-off. Maddie chooses “Red High Heels” by Kellie Pickler. Rachel sings “Son of a Preacher Man” by Dusty Springfield. In a cruel twist, they take Maddie over Rachel. That wasn’t right.

Clark Beckham is called next. His House of Blues performance gave me major goosebumps. He sang “Georgia on My Mind” by Ray Charles. It was phenomenal!!!!!! Keith and Jennifer gave him a standing ovation. He, of course, makes it.

Daniel Seavey is really adorable. He sings Paula Abdul’s “Straight Up” to his crush Jennifer Lopez. He makes it into the top 24.

Tyanna Jones sang “Love on Top” by Beyonce. I think she got control of her nerves. Her pitch was great. She is in the top 24.

Rayvon Owen and Shannon Berthiaume await the judges’ decisions. Rayvon’s performance gave me goosebumps with Sam Smith’s “Lay Me Down” and Shannon fell short for me on her Janis Joplin’s “Piece of My Heart.” The House of Blues was Shannon’s first-ever public performance. They are both through.

Jax goes in to receive her judgment. She sang “You and I” by Lady Gaga. Jennifer didn’t think it was her best performance. She is also in the top 24.

Hollywood Anderson has had a mixed run. What will be his fate? We find out tomorrow.





American Idol Season 14 Hollywood Week Final Solos

13 02 2015

 

Eighty contestants survived group rounds and that number goes down to 48 tonight by the end of solos.

For her final Hollywood Week performance, Loren Lott picks “Skyfall” because it makes her cry which makes Harry smile. I think that is the best I have heard her sound. I would say yes to that. Jennifer stood up in applause. Harry said he couldn’t fault it and it was an Idol-worthy performance.

Daniel Seavey sings next. He sings “I See Fire” by Ed Sheeran. That gave me some goosebumps there at the end of the song. Jennifer thinks he is so friggin’ cute it’s crazy. He replied, “Right back at’cha.” Keith thinks that is so cute. Keith said there is so much joy in him.

“Big Sexy” Ron Wilson gets into a heated discussion with Ricky Minor because Ricky, in all his years of experience on Idol, gave Ron some advice. He couldn’t get into sync with the band and Ricky felt he was trying to oversing the song. He sings his audition song, “Let’s Get It On” by Marvin Gaye.  I am not sure that was a smart move. The judges don’t like to hear repeats. It sounded like he got with the program. The judges seemed happy with it as well. But then he disses Ricky Minor to the judges. That is NOT cool. That made me dislike him as a person. I realize that maybe he was trying to be funny but it did not come off that way to me. Keith does mention it and Harry agrees. He tells the camera—“not to be cocky or anything” but he is the energy Idol has been missing for years. If he makes it through, he will not get my vote.

Shi Scott is feeling terrified. She chooses Etta James’ “All I Could Do Was Cry.” I really love her voice in this genre. Harry said her being out of breath and her heart racing was evident. He felt it wasn’t her strongest performance.

One of my favorites, Adam Lasher, is up next. He sings, “Free Fallin’” by Tom Petty. It was okay. Keith said the only thing that bothered him about the performance is that he started with the higher octave and then had nowhere to go with it when he got to the chorus.

The first cuts occur. Oh my God! Adam Lasher did not make it through. I was not surprised about Ron. Shi, Loren, and Daniel and another unnamed contestant are through. Three other contestants who I don’t readily recognize also go home.

Quentin Alexander made his entrance in style and took his coat off in such a rock-star moment that JLo went on stage to take his coat from him. His song brought Keith to his feet. JLo was clapping. Harry was stoic. It wasn’t the best vocal in my opinion but he deserves to make it to the top 48. Country singer Maddie Walker sounded good. Keith was enjoying it immensely. Geek Trevor Douglas advances to the next round as well.

Alexis Granville sings—are you kidding me? “You Light Up My Life” by Debby Boone. I was suddenly channeling Simon Cowell to make a snarky remark about being at a wedding reception…a wedding reception where one of the family members gets up and sings out of tune with several key changes. Harry is kind and lets her start again after getting her note again from the band. She doesn’t improve and she goes home.

Jax kills it with “Let It Be” by The Beatles.  This song has special meaning to me as it was the favorite song of a dear friend who died. Whenever I hear it, I am certain Diane is nearby. Jax sings it to her father, a first responder at 9/11, which also has meaning for me because I knew someone who died at the WTC. It was an easy yes.

Michael Simeon gave me goosebumps. This is a do-or-die moment for Nick Fradiani since he will age out for Idol. I really enjoyed it. Everyone enjoyed that. Katherine Skinner’s psychic cat Mustafa died (I am sorry for her loss). She takes on Heart and it did not go well. She was a little off tune and it sounded like she was yelling. After hearing soothing sounds from Nick, this was a sharp contras. Jennifer said that was like the third time she had messed up and she didn’t deliver. Michael, Emily, and Nick are through to the next round. Katherine is going home. But shockingly, Jessica Lamb is also going home along with Alex Shier, and Piper Jones.

Clark Beckham performs and I get goosebumps. WOW!!!! Mark Andrew was ‘meh’ and I normally like what he does. He apparently forgot the lyrics. Harry warns him not to do that again. Keith is compassionate about how tired they are but JLo says if they can’t handle this they aren’t going to be able to handle the show and all its activities. Harry tells Naomi Tatsuoka that there are a lot of words that were garbled. Jennifer feels that Alexis Gomez’s performances are always the same. Briana, Travis Findlay, and Naomi are going home. Harry tells Mark that his voice is a special voice and is the only thing that gave him a pass this time. Shannon Berthiaume and Katherine Winston also make it through.

Joey Cook is concerned she will forget her lyrics again. She gives a so-so performance. I really like her but two mistakes in a row may be enough to send her home. Lovey James chooses that awful wedding song. She did a better job than Alexis Granville did, however. Another one of my favorites, Tyanna Jones, impressed Jennifer. I wish I could have seen her whole solo. Where is Savion? Rayvon Owen goes next and I have full-body goosebumps. Riley Bria was good but there are strong voices in this competition. Harry loved it. Joey, Riley, Tayvon, Tyanna are through.

Next week they sing live at The House of Blues.

And oh wait! I see Savion next to the woman in red. He made it! PHEW!

In some of the scenes about next week’s show, we see Adam Ezegelian, Hollywood Anderson, and Reno Anoa’l in the top 48.








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