American Idol S15 The Final Final 2 Perform

7 04 2016

I can’t believe this is the last performance show ever for American Idol. The top three took the stage to sing “At Least We Stole the Show” by Kygo (or at least a bit of it). I wish I could be there. I enjoyed the season 10 finale which I was so fortunate to attend thanks to Fox Broadcasting via the Fox VIP program.

Winner’s Single

Trent was up first singing “Falling” by Trent Harmon. I guess Keith Urban already knows the words to the song because he was lip syncing the words as Trent was singing. I like this song so much better than both song choices last year. This is just crazy awesome. At this point in the competition unless the contestants have just major issues, they are all going to be great. The judges do not comment during this round.

The song for Dalton Rapattoni is “Strike a Match.” He found his fire again. I could hear this on the radio tomorrow. It was fabulous. He said he couldn’t feel his feet. I bet!

La’Porsha Renae’s song is “Battles.” This could be her anthem song. Anthem songs do really well for sales.

They all did really well with their individual songs, but based on what I liked lyrical wise, I would have to say La’Porsha’s song, then Dalton’s, then Trent’s. Performance wise I would have to say La’Porsha, Trent, and then Dalton.

Top 2 Revealed

They all came from the Little Rock auditions. But who makes it through? The first person through is La’Porsha (as if there was any doubt). Trent gets the final spot. I think Dalton already knew. But someone will sign Dalton quickly. He has a lot of pop appeal. If someone doesn’t sign him, they are just plain stupid. The winner is….from Mississippi! And I think both people will win because they are crazy good and labels would be stupid not to give the runner-up a contract.

Simon Fuller’s Picks

Trent sang “If You Don’t Know By Now” by Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes. He messed up the lyrics “that we’ve been through” turned out “that we’ve been do.” I chalk that up to nerves. This is a good song for him. It has a lot of soul and I see him in an R&B/country fusion of some kind. Keith said it is extraordinary to see how far he has come in the competition. He thinks it will be the closest race in Idol history. Jennifer said it was amazing. Harry said he is happy that Trent is here.

La’Porsha answered with “A House is Not a Home” by Dionne Warwick. It was so fantastic. Goosebumps!! Jennifer said it is one of her top 5 songs of all time. Now we have the La’Porsha version; it was so beautiful. Harry thought it was the most complex piece of music she has ever done this entire season and told him a lot. It moved him. Keith said he doesn’t even smoke and he felt like he needed a cigarette. It was beautiful and smoldering. It was the perfect song choice.

Ryan asked Jennifer which one if she had to choose, for this round, who would it be. Jennifer thought La’Porsha edged out Trent during this round.

Contestants’ Choice

Trent Harmon chose “Chandelier” by Sia to sing again and it sounded just as wonderful as the first time. He became very emotional knowing this is the final song on which he would be judged. Harry thought it was really, really strong. If he was going to do anything to make it the hardest decision on Idol, this song was the choice. Keith added that for some people, he might have made it a really easy decision. His vocal transition from chest to voice to falsetto is so gorgeous. Jennifer said that from the very beginning she saw something very special in him and he would be in the last two. He deserves it. Trent showed them a book he kept of everything each one of them had ever told him and wrote it down.

La’Porsha Renae picked “Diamonds” by Rihanna. Insane goosebumps. The crowd started chanting her name and she was overcome with emotion. Keith thought it was amazing, a beautiful job. Jennifer said watching her up there sing that song–she has handled every performance effortlessly. She can’t wait to go to a show of hers and see her let loose. She is going to be there. And Harry said Jennifer can ride with him. He had nothing to say; it was incredible.

So the last critique ever from an Idol judge (Harry) was “I have nothing to say about that performance; it was incredible.”





American Idol S15 Top 10 Revealed Part 2

26 02 2016

They got right down to business by announcing the final six contestants making it through to the top 10. Going through are Sonika Vaid, MacKenzie Bourg, Gianna Isabella, Avalon Young, Tristan McIntosh, and Lee Jean. Going home will be Manny Torres, Thomas Stringfellow, Jenn Blosil, and Jeneve Rose Mitchell. It was sweet how Jenn was supporting Jeneve Rose.

Kelly Clarkson looking very gorgeous and pregnant joined the judges’ panel. The top 10 will be performing this evening. Hopefully there will be new songs and not picks from previous songs they sang.

Olivia Rox starts the evening. She shared her memories about her first real memory of the show being Katharine McPhee singing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” which was her song and one she would sing on stage with her parents who are professional singers. I was expecting her to do the song but tonight she is singing “Unconditionally” by Katy Perry. I love the control in her voice. Where people would belt out certain notes, she brought it in and it was a different way of doing it. I love interesting and different and I love her. I think Sonika Vaid needs to take notes from her about changing up a song and not singing it exactly like the original. Keith said keep loosening and relaxing. Jennifer loved what she did with the song. She liked the arrangement. Kelly said the beginning was tasteful. She is a fan. Harry loved it; she did everything she had to do—nice job.

Gianna Isabella had a crush on Scotty McCreery. Too bad she didn’t get to pair with him in the duet. Her hair is beautiful straightened this evening. She chose “Listen” by Beyonce. She is amazing for 15 but there were some notes that were sharp and flat on important notes. I loved the background. It’s ballsy choosing Beyonce. Jennifer said it wasn’t her best performance ever for her. There were parts that sounded really great. But, it was very shaky. Now she has to pick songs that will show all of her strengths if she is going to make it all the way through. Kelly said it was a bold song to choose. You get pitchy and you get nervous but she would grow out of it. Kelly suggested to her to quit thinking about it because you focus on it too much and she will lose emotion and get pitchy. Harry said Kelly is pretty good at this judging thing. Harry had nothing to add other than the song seemed very arranged. It felt rehearsed. Keith said but with a good thing is that she needs to believe in herself. And Kelly chimed in “and grow, tour, sing more and more.”

Lee Jean remembers Chris Medina’s audition and his story touched his heart. Tonight he chose “Skinny Love” by Bon Iver. He got a little pitchy in there. I think he needs to be careful about song choice. That isn’t a song many know. But the audience was clapping along with him so he did capture them and that is often important. Kelly loves him. It is cool that he found his niche. Harry said this is his lane. He said that he and MacKenzie are both similar and if he goes forward in the competition, that is something he may have to concern himself with, which is what Kelly was saying, but he can’t see him doing EDM. He needs to concentrate on pitch. Keith said what he does well is telling a story. That is very different than what the others can do. Jennifer said it is really achieving what Chris Medina made him feel. Songs that he picks has to mean something to him so when others are watching him they can feel the same way and he has the ability to do that. And Ryan said Chris was in the audience and Chris loved it.

Avalon Young gets called up to the stage to perform. One of her biggest moments of Idol was Justin Guarini. She chose “Stitches” by Shawn Mendes. Oh no, bad song choice. Her lower range is rough. It was pitchy all over the place. Her comfort zone is higher. Harry said he does exude this cool vibe. He said he wouldn’t have done the halftime groove in the beginning. This fell flat for him in terms of what she was singing. Keith said she was nervous at the beginning and the audience wasn’t quite with her yet. After the halfway point, she loosened up and the audience was with her. She has to be loose like that from the beginning. Jennifer said she hasn’t had trouble doing that so maybe it was the song. It wasn’t really the right song for her. Kelly said she is so captivating. There is something so special about her. She generally doesn’t like the songs she sings but she loves them when Avalon sings them.

Dalton Rapattoni said season 5 of Idol was very special. They would bet each season and Chris was his bet. When Chris was sent home, it was a very bad night in the Rapattoni house. David Cook is one of the biggest reason he approaches the songs the way he does. Tonight he is singing “Hey There Delilah” by Plain White T’s. I don’t like this song for him; however, I like that it up-tempo. Keith said he loves what he does with songs. He was like electric barnyard. Jennifer said he is the kind cool cute guy but he has a lot of heart. He did a really good job. Kelly said he is so comfortable on stage and it bleeds through. Kelly says he loves the way he sings. It is artistry and not just a singer. Harry said every time he has sung, he has completely flipped the concept of the arrangement and so far he is batting 1000.

Tristan McIntosh she watched religiously since she was 11 years old. They all loved Jessica Sanchez. She was her inspiration. She chose “Nothin’ Like You” by Dan + Shay. I don’t know this song. I don’t think I can comment about it. Sometimes she sounded a little sharp or flat at times. Nerves are getting people tonight. Jennifer said that it is about finding songs she feels comfortable in because she felt like that one for her wasn’t all it could have been knowing how she can sing. It wasn’t as strong a performance that she could have given. Kelly wants to know what her message is. She recalled the audition song where her mom surprised her and she got lost in the music and that is the girl she wants to see. She suggested a Trisha Yearwood song. She wants to hear a song that she really felt. Harry said it is a very lyricy song and he would suggest doing a song that everyone would know and not just people in the country lane. Also if she is going to go talk with the crowd you can’t let it affect her vocal. When she stopped doing that, her vocal improved. Keith said that the familiarity of the song is one thing. If you can find a song and kill it, it doesn’t matter what the song is. She did pretty good but she has to watch the pitch.

MacKenzie Bourg enjoyed William Hung sing “She Bangs.” He chose “I See Fire” by Ed Sheeran. I thought he sang this before, but when I checked my notes it was Lee Jean who did. It was pleasant. I think Lee Jean’s version was more haunting. MacKenzie is a cool dude. I hope he goes far in the competition. Kelly said that her baby had not moved during the show and he was doing flips during his performance. The baby likes him. What is so cool for him is that he knows exactly where he wants to go and he is already there. Harry said he is very compelling when he sings. He asked him what the lyrics meant to him. He said it makes him feel fired up to be there. Keith said he loves that he plays guitar so he was so chill and in the zone and pulls the audience in. Jennifer said that as the competition goes on it will be interesting to see which songs he chooses to make an impact.

La’Porsha Renae watched Kelly Clarkson who came from such humble beginnings. To win would make her feel like she is on top of her life and her struggles. She came out on top. She chose “Diamonds” by Rihanna. Wow. She is the bookend to Kelly indeed. I love Dalton, but she is the winner right there. Goosebumps! The first ones of the evening. She is in a different lane from all the other contestants. Jennifer, Kelly and Keith are all on their feet. La’Porsha is in tears from the love and support she is hearing from the room. Harry said – that is your critique. Kelly said it is not her turn to speak but she does not care. But if she were her every time she opened her mouth to sing, she would say, “you’re welcome.” It is such a talent. She is going to win. Jennifer said it is her control. Keith said there is a quote that says, “I judge myself not by what I have but what I’m willing to give” and what she just gave was just pure humanity. It was beautiful.

I would hate being the contestants who sing after her because it is just going to fall as flat as a pancake. And that unlucky person is Sonika Vaid. Kelly Clarkson was her inspiration. Oh wow. She is going to tackle “Bring Me To Life” by Evanescence? Interesting choice. But once again it sounds like she is singing karaoke. She is a beautiful singer, but there is no artistry. She needs to bring up her game by changing arrangements. I like this rocker side of her because her choosing ballads has been a complaint of mine. She just can’t make the ending different; she has to change the song. Keith loved the song choice and had all the right drama. Jennifer said she is dangerous. If she can do what she just did, letting go, believing in herself, etc. she is dangerous. Kelly said she is never pitchy and that is an amazing accomplishment. Harry said it takes guts to follow a performer who had crazy applause like La’Porsha, that he liked the song, he loved the fact that she was showing a different type of angst and passion they haven’t seen before.

Trent Harmon said that Idol made him want to become a singer. He remembers when David Archuletta sang “Imagine.” It really stuck to him. He is singing “Like I Can” by Sam Smith. Goosebumps. I was dancing and clapping while he was singing. Jennifer said “wow.” She feels they have one of the best competitions with this top 10. His voice is so unique and different and he does exciting things with it. It wasn’t all perfect every single moment. He is an artist. She loves him. Kelly said it is a very impressive thing to have such an impressive thing to have that natural gift. Harry thought it was fantastic. Over the last years American Idol has been on the air, it is almost like watching a world class ice skater. If he goes for the runs he has to be like an ice skating match. Tremendous job. Jennifer wants a “run battle.” Keith said it was a good job. He thought everyone was rising to the occasion after La’Porsha and now he wishes La’Porsha started the show.

Kelly Clarkson then took the stage for a special performance with a song called “Piece by Piece.” I was in tears. It was written after a conversation with her sister. Keith was sobbing as much as I was. Jennifer had so much compassion in her eyes. The lyrics made me cry because it sort of resembles my own life. I married a man who stayed when all I knew was abandonment. We are kindred spirits Kelly Clarkson.





American Idol S12 Top 4 Again

2 05 2013

After the unsurprising surprise twist last week, the top 4 were allowed to sing again since the judges never used the save all season. The votes tonight will be added to the votes last week to determine who is going home. Tonight’s songs are “now” and “then.” The “now” selection has to be from 2013. The “then” had to be on a list of standard classics.

All the ladies looked fabulous this evening. I have no doubt that all will be successful after the show is over. But here is my rundown for tonight (I’m behind on my blog from last week–so I think I’ll just skip. Most of the performances last week were lackluster anyway. This week, I wasn’t thrilled about Mariah and Nicki fighting.

Angie Miller

Song 1: “Diamonds” by Rihanna

I lived it but I hope we aren’t going to get ballads all night tonight. A little sleepy sometimes. She cracked in a few places. Keith thought it missed the mark. Nicki said it was bland and lackluster. Randy agrees with Keith but liked the leather shorts (okay?). Mariah: Girl–I love you but condense your comments!

Song 2: “Someone To Watch Over Me”

This could have been a really big song for her. It was sleepy for me. Her vocal is nice but it was not a standout performance (for me). Keith loved it. Nicki gave her some performance tips. Randy thought it was an amazing vocal.

Angie

Angie Miller

Amber Holcomb

Song 1: “Just Give Me a Reason” by P!nk

That was rough. She sounds like she is singing just under the note. She has done much better in the past. Nicki said there was no emotional connection (I agree). Randy said it was not stellar.

Song 2: “My Funny Valentine”

Goosebumps. Phenomenal. I felt she was very connected to the song. It was flawless perfection. The judges gave her a well-deserved standing ovation. She became very emotional because she thinks that she has no shot of going through next week and was openly tearful. I felt so bad for her. It was not a fake cry just for votes. Note to Amber: Jennifer Hudson did not win Idol either–look how far she went. It is what you do with the opportunities you get and you must passionately pursue your dream.

Amber

Amber Holcomb

Candice Glover

Song 1: “When I Was Your Man” by Bruno Mars

Candice IS BACK! Last week I was so disappointed that she wasn’t pouring her heart and soul into his music which I have seen her do multiple times in the past. I also love her hair. I had goosebumps (see my goosebump history–it has never steered my wrong). Randy said it was amazing. Mariah and Keith thought it was a winning performance. Nicki said she deserved a standing ovation and Mariah stands up after the others and pretends to throw glitter on her.

Song 2: “You’ve Changed” by Billie Hollday

Goosebumps AGAIN!! Her voice is also perfection during both songs this evening. She receives another standing ovation.

Candice

Candice Glover

Kree Harrison

Song 1: “See You Again” by Carrie Underwood

I loved it. She looks lighter in spirit this week even though this was a serious song. She was looking downright depressed last week. Keith thought her voice was full but there was a disconnection between what he was hearing (a full band) and what he was seeing (an intimate setting with an acoustic guitar).

Song 2: “Stormy Weather”

She looks beautiful. I felt she was very connected to the song. She did not take Harry Connick, Jr.’s advice. I thought that was a good thing because I loved the way she did it. The judges, however, did not like her song choice. They thought “God Bless The Child” might have been a better song for her, for example.

Kree

Kree Harrison

So my picks for tonight are: Candice, Kree, Amber, Angie

Last week my picks were: Angie, Candice, Amber, Kree

It will be interesting to see who goes home tonight. David Cook will be on!





XFactor Season 2 Top 6 Perform

6 12 2012

XFactorLogoAfter Vino Alan was thrown under the bus last week and a surprise that Paige would be going home and not CeCe, the rankings looked like this: Carly Rose Sonenclar, Tate Stevens, Emblem 3, Fifth Harmony, CeCe Frey, and Diamond White. Congratulations to Mario Lopez who got married in Mexico this weekend. This week is “unplugged” and the results of the Pepsi Challenge. Unplugged will root out the real singers from those who just sound better with background singers and lots of background noise in the way of instruments. There is nowhere you can hide, nowhere you can run. With the Pepsi Challenge, the public decided everything, down to what the contestants will wear.

UNPLUGGED

Contestant: CeCe Frey (pronounced “fry” like “French fry” and not “fray”)
Twitter: @CeCeMissXToTheO
Song: “The Edge of Glory” by Lady Gaga

My thoughts: It was not bad but it wasn’t good either. She had a rough start. I’d call it average. However, after hearing Emblem 3, this was not my least favorite.

The judges: LA Reid said it was really good and he was becoming a fan. Britney disagreed and said at this point in the competition, it needed to be great. Simon said it was not worth a $5 million contract. It was too cabaret versus unplugged; it was good but not great. Mentor Demi thought it was one of her best vocal performances.

CeCe1

CeCe Frey Unplugged

Contestant: Diamond White
Twitter: @DiamondKWhite
Song: “It’s A Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World” by James Brown, Etta James, Joshua Ledet and SO MANY OTHERS

My thoughts: I do not like when contestants do the same songs twice. I feel it is grossly unfair to the other contestants who have to learn a new song. And I get the feeling this is a song she has been doing most of her life. It was better than her first version, but it should have never been repeated. Kicking the stand was stupid.

The judges: LA Reid said she brought attitude and sang her butt off. Demi said it was risky doing the song again but she pulled it off and loved her kicking the stand. Simon said it was a little screechy in parts and wished she had done a different song. Mentor Britney said she was so proud of her, that she destroyed it.

Diamond1

Diamond White Unplugged

Contestant: Carly Rose Sonenclar
Twitter: @CarlyRoseMusic
Song: “As Long As You Love Me” by Justin Bieber

My thoughts: Just crown her the winner and get it over with. It was a home run. She does need to work on her hand movements with her left hand as she pulls her head to the right. It gets old after awhile as she does it with every single song.

The judges: LA Reid said he loved her so much and it may be the best she has done to his tastes. Demi said it was better than Justin’s version. Simon said we were seeing a star emerge and it was one of his favorite performances. Coach Britney said she was so proud of her (she says this every single time, doesn’t she?). Each week she continues to make each song her own.

Carly1

Carly Rose Sonenclar Unplugged

Contestant: Tate Stevens
Twitter: @TateStevensCtry
Song: “Livin’ On A Prayer” by Bon Jovi

My thoughts: I don’t like this song as a country song. It was okay. It was pitchy in places. I did not see how this was unplugged with all the harmonies of the background singers and all the instruments.

The judges: Britney said she felt he was getting away from his country roots. Demi said it was boring and he skipped out on the high note. Simon said this was the second Bon Jovi song he has done. He encouraged Tate to choose his own material and not let LA Reid do it. LA Reid said he naturally disagreed.

Tate1

Tate Stevens Unplugged

Contestant: Formerly LYLAS, then 1432, which meant “I Love You Too” , and now “Fifth Harmony”
Twitter: @FifthHarmony
Song: “Set Fire to the Rain” by Adele

My thoughts: STOP….DOING…ADELE!! I am SHOCKED that Simon picked this given those were his words during the auditions. It was not good but it still was not as bad as Emblem 3.

The judges: LA Reid said he still did not hear harmony and thought their name was Fifth Unison. Britney did not see how they were separated from any other girl group. Demi said she heard harmonies but a couple of them should just be solo artists. Simon said this was pick-on-Fifth-Harmony week again. He said there were not any other girl groups on the market right now and there was a place for them. He said they deserved a shot in the semifinals.

FifthHarmony1

Fifth Harmon Unplugged

Contestant: Emblem3
Twitter: @EmblemThree
Song: “Just The Way You Are” by Bruno Mars

My thoughts: Drew is absolutely their weakest link. It was their worst performance yet. Each individual is not good but their harmonies and music usually compensate for what they are lacking, as well as their personalities. There is no hiding in unplugged week. And then Drew encouraging everyone to vote as they finished the song before their criticisms. No one else did that.

The judges: LA Reid said it was pretty good and at least one of Simon’s groups could sing harmony. Britney thought it was their best performance. Demi said they did great but not the best. It was like a downgraded version of the Jonas Brothers 5 years ago. Sting! Simon thought they had an amazing week.

Emblem3A

Emblem3 Unplugged

Pepsi Challenge

CeCe Frey: “Part of Me” by Katy Perry

My thoughts: It was sour from the start and it did not get better. She tends to be sour when she tries to dance. I liked her first performance better.

The judges: LA Reid was not loving it; felt it was karaoke. Britney did not agree and thought it was very entertaining. Simon liked it especially that she was so defiant. Demi thought she did a good job.

CeCe2

CeCe Frey

Emblem 3: “Forever Young” by Alphaville

My thoughts: It was better than the first song but it was still very, very rough.

The judges: LA Reid thought they nailed it. Britney thought it was a superstar performance. Demi said they commanded the stage and it was better than their first performance. Simon thought they did really good tonight.

Emblem3B

Emblem3

Carly Rose Sonenclar: “If I Were a Boy” by Beyonce

My thoughts: Bodacious!

The judges: LA Reid said as a judge he was very nervous of her, but as a fan she never let him down. Demi thought it was a phenomenal vocal. Simon said she had a phenomenal night. Britney said she was the definition of the XFactor and it was stunning.

Carly2

Carly Rose Sonenclar

Fifth Harmony: “Give Your Heart A Break” by Demi Lovato

My thoughts: I enjoyed it. I think it was their best performance ever.

The judges: This time, LA Reid heard harmony. It was really good and was their very, very best performance. Britney said they did the song good. Demi thought it sounded better than her own version and they sounded so beautiful on it. Simon thought that America’s chose a great song and girl power (what?)!

FifthHarmony2

Fifth Harmony

Diamond White: “Diamonds” by Rihanna

My thoughts: This was not as good as her first song, but again that song was likely sung so many times in her life, she had that song mastered. It was good, but did not blow me away.

The judges: LA Reid did not love her rendition of the song. Demi thought she did it justice. Simon said the second half was better than the first half. Britney said this song was made for her.

Diamond2

Diamond White

Tate Stevens: “If Tomorrow Never Comes” by Garth Brooks

My thoughts: This was MUCH better than the first song. There were a few off-key notes here and there but it sounded great. I actually know this song (even though I don’t usually listen to country music).

The judges: Britney thought it felt like a Tate Stevens performance. Demi thought he had a bright future. The song made her a little sleepy but she was really tired (a criticism which left Tate confused and me, too). Simon said welcome back to the competition. LA Reid said that was great.

Tate2

Tate Stevens

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

My picks for going home

Tough to say who will be in the bottom. Like I said just crown Carly Rose Sonenclar the winner already.