American Idol S15 Top 4 Revealed

26 03 2016

I’ll have to catch up another time with last week’s Idol. I did see Tristan McIntosh was the one to go home. My life is insane right now during tax time.

Legendary Steven Van Zandt mentored the contestants this week. The first contestant through to the final 4 comes as no surprise – La’Porsha Renae. I LOVE her new hairdo. Now she looks like a rock star. They have to sing hard-rock songs this week. She chose Bon Jovi’s “Wanted Dead or Alive.” I don’t think there is anything she cannot sing. She is amazing. Keith said she killed it. She brought out the blue undertones of the song and it was really good. Jennifer said her voice is so undeniable she could sing the phone book. Harry says her ability as a singer transcends every genre. Her vibrato was in time and he had never heard anyone do that before.

MacKenzie Bourg chose “I Want You to Want Me” by Cheap Trick. He started out a little pitchy. I like that he tried to do something different with the song, but there were sections where the band swallowed him up. But his pitch problems remained throughout the song. Jennifer is not sure if she liked how he “MacKenzied” it. It wasn’t as exciting as she wanted it to be. Harry thought it was alright. His vocal was fine but it wasn’t one of his favorite ones. Keith hated the arrangement.

David Cook returned to the Idol stage to sing “Heartbeat.” I really liked it. The beginning of the song though sounded like bits and pieces of his other songs.

Trent Harmon made it through to the final four. He chose “Sharp Dressed Man” by ZZ Top. The first verse was very Louisiana deep-blues sounding.  He kept the chorus familiar for the audience. I loved everything about this. Jennifer and Keith were on their feet. Harry said he was so content with the groove in the beginning. In concert, he could have sung the same song twice. It was really smart. Keith said it was so freaking good. At this point they need a song to show off their attributes and it was a 10 out of 10. Jennifer said she has been waiting for him to have this performance. It was perfect.

Sonika and Dalton stood together to hear the results of the final person who makes it through to the top 4. I hope it is Dalton. AND IT IS!!!!!! He was going to sing one song, but it never really came together so he went with his backup song, “God Only Knows” by the Beach Boys. This is NOT a hard rock song. After what I saw with Trent, this is kind of anticlimactic. For me to say that is tough because I’m a big Dalton fan. Keith said it was as pure as it gets. Jennifer said it is great that he took the advice. It was a really good moment for him. Harry said this one was the most complex harmonically and vulnerability. It wasn’t about a strong vocal but for him to get completely into the lyrics and he did that.

Katharine McPhee returned to sing “Over the Rainbow” by Judy Garland.

Sia was the mentor in the second half of the show. I enjoyed getting to know her more on James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke.

La’Porsha is up first. Sia was blown away by La’Porsha’s rendition of her song “Diamonds” on a previous show. She chose “Elastic Heart” tonight. I loved the drum accompaniment, too. I loved it. Jennifer said she feels like she isn’t doing a job anymore. It’s so nice to watch. She has grown. Harry asked her if she sang in her head voice before and she said no. He says he feels like he is a passenger in a NASCAR seat when she sings. Keith said it is beautiful to come in with raw talent turn into a performer. He feels like he is at an award show watching her do an original song.

MacKenzie chose “Titanium.” I liked this song better than the first-round song. He took Sia’s advice and went for the falsetto for the high note on the first go-round and then took the note down later. Harry said it was nice. He gave him advice not to make it about a single note. Keith liked it as a singer/songwriter moment. Jennifer said there is more that he can do with his voice. Life doesn’t begin until you are out of your comfort zone.

Sia performed “Cheap Thrills.” She is such a performance artist with the dancers who work with her and how she presents in her songs in such a unique way.

Trent chose “Chandelier.” Wow. I really loved what he did to this song. I had goosebumps, more than Sia’s goosebumps on her legs. These were full-body goosebumps. I’m speechless. He has had a stellar evening with two fantastic songs. Keith thought it was beautiful. It played to everything he has that is so special to him. It was exquisite and he loved every minute of it. Jennifer said the voice is consistent but the wardrobe is like two. Harry thought it was phenomenal. He felt Trent was completely in another world with that. He gives it a 100 out of 100. (Wow, you can’t get higher praise than that).

Geeze, Dalton. I would hate to follow that. Dalton chose “Bird Set Free.” They discussed how they are both bipolar. It was a touching moment. I got goosebumps. That was a great performance for him. He was so emotional and I started crying with him. Jennifer said it is beautiful to watch him. He touches their hearts but especially tonight. Harry said this song was the best match up. He sure liked it. Keith said he is up against some insane singers, but he is always pushing through his limitations. It’s so inspiring.

I think Trent, La’Porsha and Dalton deserve the top 3. I have enjoyed MacKenzie’s work, but his growth hasn’t been as much as the others and I really haven’t seen him take risks other than try to make songs different acoustically. Also, I don’t see him as a book-end to Kelly Clarkson to close out American Idol.





XFactor Season 2 Top 13 Perform

8 11 2012

The field narrowed after saying goodbye last Thursday to Sister C, David Correy, Willie Jones and Diamond White. But wait! SURPRISE! They want Diamond White to come back. We now have a final 13 that the public will get to vote on tonight. Tonight’s theme is “songs from the movies.”

Demi Lovato’s Young Adults

Contestant: Paige Thomas
Twitter @PaigeAva
Song: “Take My Breath Away” by Berlin from the movie Top Gun.

My thoughts: Her enunciation was rough especially at the beginning. Very nasal. It’s like how my husband sings when he does not know the words. The performance, though, was hot, theatrical. She had a lot of heat with that dancer.

The judges: L.A. Reid that the song was good but he was not completely blown away. Britney thought the beginning was the best part, theatrical. Simon said she is a fantastic performer but Demi could have used a bit more imagination. Demi said she was amazing.

Paige Thomas

* * * * * * * * * *

Contestant: Jennel Garcia
Twitter: @JennelGarcia
Song: “I Love Rock and Roll” by the Arrows (made famous by Joan Jett) from the movie Crossroads?

My thoughts: Jennel, Jennel. WHERE ARE YOU? It was a bad song choice and she tried the best she could. Her lower register at the beginning was bad. She is my pick to win after Jillian Jensen was sent home. The Jennel from the auditions is gone. She has lost something. I am in total agreement in Simon on this. The last 45 seconds of the song was better.

The judges: LA Reid said it was good. Britney said it was “hot, hot, hot.” Simon said he really likes her but he does not like the way Demi has made her look. He said he sounded like a Joan Jett cover and she needed to challenge herself more.

Jennel Garcia

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Contestant: CeCe Frey (pronounced “fry” like “French fry” and not “fray”)
Twitter: @CeCeMissXToTheO
Song: “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor from the movie “Rocky”

My thoughts: The spots are back, but her vocals are not. What happened to her? Is she one of these people who perfected just a few songs that she could sing really, really well to get her past the auditions and then that’s it? She was better in the auditions. Now that she has blown two songs now in two weeks, I am even more upset that Jillian Jensen was sent home. It was the worst vocal of the night. It was pitchy all over the place. Is it because she is trying to be too ambitious and the dancing is throwing off her vocal? It sounded like a middle school talent show. I think 98% of the song was out of tune.

The judges: LA Reid said the ending was strong but it did not blow him away. Britney said she brought fire. Simon said the song choice was horrible and told Cece she should be making her own song decisions. She insisted it was her voice. Demi said she had come far.

CeCe Frey

Britney Spears’ Teens

Contestant: Arin Ray
Twitter: @ArinRaySings
Song: “American Boy” by Estelle featuring Kanye West from the movie “Obsessed.

My thoughts: He is a bit more comfortable on stage but it is still like he is trying to count the dance moves in his head. It was full of energy and very entertaining.

The judges: L.A. Reid liked it. Demi thought he took the advice given from last week and he looked like a star. Simon said Britney had done a great job mentoring him and he was impressed. Britney was proud of him and said he was a true star.

Arin Ray

* * * * * * * * *

Contestant: Diamond White
Twitter: @DiamondKWhite
Song: “I Have Nothing” by Whitney Houston from the movie “The Bodyguard”

My thoughts: It was a weak vocal and she is not mature enough to understand the depth of that kind of love, so she sang the words. It was good for her age, but it is one of the most overdone songs and I’m frankly tired of hearing it. The last note was held for less than a half of a second.

The judges: LA Reid said it was ambitious and she brought it home. Demi said it tugged on her heart. Simon said it was a gutsy, great vocal. Britney said she channeled Whitney (no, she didn’t–Jennifer Hudson did).

Diamond White

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Contestant: Beatrice Miller
Twitter: @BeatriceMiller
Song: “Iris” by The Goo-Goo Dolls from the movie “City of Angels”

My thoughts: Her lower range is still very rough. I understand that she had voice strain issues. They were pretty good vocals but her life experience is not in the song. It is missing and that is not her fault. You cannot manufacture that. When she tried at one point of the song, it was not believable. She will be a force to be reckoned with when she is in her 20’s, but now is not her time. It is too early.

The judges: LA Reid said it sounds like a hit record. Demi said she pours her soul into her song. Simon said she is not like a 13-year-old. She had vocal tuning issues in the middle, but it was a better performance than last week. Britney said she had the best personality out of everyone.

Beatrice Miller

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Contestant: Carly Rose Sonenclar
Twitter: @CarlyRoseMusic
Song: “It Will Rain” by Bruno Mars from the movie “Twilight: Breaking Dawn”

My thoughts: Some pitch issues (just a few). Excellent vocal for her age. Maybe my third favorite song of the evening. There is still a believability issue with her age and the meaning of the lyrics.

The judges: LA Reid thought it was really heartfelt. He loved it and loved her. Demi said it was incredible. Simon said between last week and this week there was a huge improvement. She was a star in the making. Britney said she should have closed the show.

Carly Rose Sonenclar

L.A. Reid’s Over 25’s

Contestant: Vino Alan
Twitter: @VinoAlan
Song: “When a Man Loves a Woman” by Percy Sledge from the movie of the same name.

My thoughts: He looked classy in his suit. It was a great song for him. I liked hearing more about his background story. It softened his image some. It did not blow me away but I enjoyed it a great deal.

The judges: Britney said he had a unique and special voice. Demi thought it was a phenomenal performance. Simon said he went from zero to hero in one week. LA Reid said he was proud of Vino. He also conceded that Simon was right last week.

Vino Allen

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Contestant: Tate Stevens
Twitter: @TateStevensCtry
Song: “Dead or Alive” by Bon Jovi used in many movies.

My thoughts: This was a better performance than last week. He had solid vocals and a good performance.

The judges: Britney said he was a true cowboy and he nailed it. Demi said he had what it takes. Simon said he has now arrived back in the competition. LA Reid thought he did a great job.

Tate Stevens

* * * * * * * * * *

Contestant: Jason Brock
Twitter: @JasonBroccoli
Song: “I Believe I Can Fly” by R. Kelly from the movie “Space Jam”

My thoughts: In the beginning there were too many runs. He should have just hit solid notes and then built up to all the runs. This was a much better song for him. I got chills. I also like his haircut. I really do like his voice.

The judges: Britney said it was way better, but very Vegas-like. Demi said LA Reid has not guided him yet. Simon likes him but he sees him, in this particular outfit, as a singer in an Italian restaurant. LA Reid thought he did an excellent job.

 

Jason Brock

Simon Cowell’s Groups

Contestant: Lyric145
Twitter: @Lyric145
Song: “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” by Dick Van Dyke and Julie Andrews from the movie “Mary Poppins”

My thoughts: My favorite of the evening. That was dope. How difficult was that to say that word and phrasing THAT FAST? It was Mary Poppins meets Alice in Wonderland and I was flying down the rabbit hole.

The judges: LA Reid “hated it” (translation it was really good–perfect in fact). Britney thought it was intriguing and interesting to watch. Demi said it was so hyped up and they nailed it. Simon said that Lyric Da Queen picked the song and it was bloody fantastic.

Lyric145

* * * * * * * * * *

Contestant: Formerly LYLAS, then 1432, which meant “I Love You Too” , and now “Fifth Harmony”
Twitter:
Song: “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri from the movie “Twilight: Breaking Dawn”

My thoughts: It sounded very nice. Loved the harmonies. Much better female group representation than Sister C.

The judges: LA Reid said he was impressed; they nailed it. Britney said it was better this week. Demi loved the vocals but not the arrangement. Simon said he was excited about their potential and was very proud.

Fifth Harmony

* * * * * * * * * *

Contestant: Emblem3
Twitter: @EmblemThree
Song: Mash up between “My Girl” by The Temptations and “California Gurls” by Katy Perry and “What Makes You Beautiful” by One Direction. From many movies.

My thoughts: I hate that I really like these guys. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I was bopping around. They did a great job. They have definitely grown on me. The shirt coming off was a bit overboard. We got it–you have a great upper body surfer boy.

The judges: LA Reid said it was perfect and he hated that. Britney said they were able to make the song theirs. Demi thought it was great but said Simon tried to make them like One Direction. Simon said they only had 1 day to rehearse it and did a great job.

Emblem3

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

My picks for going home

Cece Frey is my top choice. Beatrice Miller is my second choice. Diamond White is my third.

Who are your picks to leave tonight?