Wednesday, January 24, 2007

American Idol - New York (New Jersey) Auditions

Ahhh more auditions. Anyone tired yet? Once again the antics of the judges proved more entertaining than the actual entertainment. The missing Simon on Day 2 after a late night out at the bars. Paula, Randy and the guest judge having to field the auditions without the mean Brit. Ryan dancing with the contestants and their parents and wearing a winter coat and gloves with a New York backdrop (even though the auditions took place in September). Paula and Simon fighting over how mean they should be to male contestants who sing perfectly in a woman's voice. Yes, this is one of the reasons that keeps people coming back. There are always familiar faces on American Idol year after year. And it helps in the transition period where we have to become familiar with this year's crop of talent. Of course throwing in the Useless Guest judge of Carol Bayer Sager did almost nothing for the episode (Yeah, I just threw this sentence in to at least let you know she was there! You may not have realized even if you watched!)

I almost don't even want to highlight the bad, because some of them flirted on the line of ridiculous. Who am I kidding? They were insanely ridiculous. I mean Ian Benardo, reject from So You Think You Can Dance? Seriously? Are we supposed to really think he just showed up without the Idol producers asking him to? Well, he may have....but it was just stupid. And how about the girl that wanted to be an American Idol but knew she couldn't sing? Are there people out there really this crazy? The only thing crazy about them is that they know how to get on TV. That doesn't change the fact that they're all idiots. Speaking of idiots, the guy in the Space Suit? I hear rumors that he is an intern from 610, Philly's local sports radio station. Good times.

Now, I will admit that Ashanti Johnson's return (after making it to Hollywood twice before) made for some quality entertainment. Even if they forced us to laugh by adding in the Soap Opera music to her monologue to the judges. Staged or not, it was pretty funny how dramatic she was about it. But the last girl that they hyped up all episode, ISADORA? (First Name Julie, we get it Ryan). That was just too much. Are we really supposed to believe that the producers didn't tell the judges to just stare aimlessly into time and space for 10 seconds so they could get it on film? Ahhhh "reality" TV! Gotta love it!

I'm sure everyone is tired of me complaining about the auditions. But I'm sure I'd hear more complaints if I didn't write SOMETHING! Plus, we only have 1 more week of auditions to go!

Okay, onto the talent. Personally, I didn't see anything that rivaled my top 2 from Memphis. Actually, I take that back. Maybe one. Golden Ticketers listed in order of appearance:
  • Sarah Burgess - 19 - "I didn't tell my parents that I skipped school and left Ohio for a trip to New York!" Now, as we all know, American Idol is all about packaging up contestants with a nice story to help us all fall in love with contestants. Boy did they do a number with this girl. Sure, she helped out a lot. I swear she was watching Lauren Hill in Sister Act 2 before she showed up to this audition. You know, where the mother refused to let her Sing because she needed to get an education. But then She went ahead and sang in the choir anyway...and by the end....all was fine and the mother was proud. Well, take that story....add in some fantastic fake crying (i mean, how did she make those tears come but still sound like she was acting??), and a semi-decent voice...and you got yourself a ticket to Hollywood. Simon liked her persistence at her singing career, but wasn't thrilled with the voice. Of course she looks kinda like Mandy Moore too, (Anyone see the movie American Dreamz? Ironic, isn't it? Mandy's character did fake crying too!) Simon, Paula, Randy say "I like You" Carol says "I like TV" Thanks Carol. Sarah calls Dad, gets some more fake crying going, and Dad says that's great! ahhhh Now Whoopie can take her habit off one more time!

    All that being said, I think some people will like Sarah and root for her. We'll see if she can get to the voting round!
  • Amanda Coluccio - 19 - Jersey Girl #1 - Always fun to watch Simon and Randy drool. Well, these 2 girls walked in trying to be the first Double American Idol winner. Anyway, without getting into how dumb an idea that is, they were awful as a duo. Separately, they did much better. I wasn't thrilled with Amanda though. I thought she was very flat on some notes. And Simon pretty much let her in because he didn't care either way (didn't really matter, the other 3 bozos said yes).
  • Antonella Barba - 19 - Jersey Girl #2 - The "untrained" voice of the duo proves to have a bit more raw talent than her counterpart. To me, she just seems like a potential top 24 that you THINK might go far, but never does. But hey, I've been incorrect before, just not often!
  • Kia Thornton - 27 - Ugh, do I even have to talk about this girl? The judges loved her. To me, it's just another Gospel singer. She pretty much just screamed the song.....100% yes they say? 100% No from me. But I'm sure she'll have a little more success than CRACK BABY.
  • Jenry Bejarano - 16 - The first ABSENT SIMON audition. I'm sure it would've ended up the same way. He was pretty good. I don't understand how he's 16, since he looks like he's at least in his mid-20's. Paula gave him those "Corey Clark" you know the girls will like him. But 16??? Even if he doesn't look like it, my rule still applies! He will not win!
  • Jory Steinberg - 25 - A Canadian that has met the Queen of England. Great story! Was a great audition. I think this girl definitely has the potential. And probably the best audition I heard tonight. I hope she gets to the top 12 just so I can start thinking up nicknames for her. So many possibilities!
  • Porcelana Patino - 27 - Our very own singer "in training." Yep she dropped 15-20 lbs in a year and got in crazy shape for the audition. Too bad she didn't train her voice as much. I wasn't very impressed. It seems like Idol is a sucker for these "FEEL GOOD" stories. I mean think about how much it would stink to have gone to New York, not told your parents, not get through to Hollywood...but still end up on TV?!?! Or if you worked hard all year to get in shape for an audition, and then get rejected? Or audition for Idol even though it may mean the end of your Opera career????
  • Rachel Zevita - 18 - Like my segueway? This girl was just strange. She sang some Jeff Buckley, some Opera, a sappy Ballad "Get Here" and thoroughly confused the judges. What does she want to be? "I want to be me, a singer/songwriter and a rockstar!" Wow.... She definitely has a voice. But I don't think it's quite ready for primetime yet. Welcome to Hollywood Rachel, hope your Opera friends are forgiving!
  • Christopher Richardson - 22 - The Justin Timberlake look-a-like, need I say more? He got in. Paula couldn't stop staring at him. Simon thinks Chris will come back and surprise everyone in Hollywood. I thought his voice was pretty good, not the best. But, I already know the girls are pulling for this guy. If he looks good, then they'll think an okay voice is 100 times better than it actually is. That all being said, I'm sure he'll stick around for awhile. And I sure hope he does so we can hear more words like "interpretated!"
  • Nick Pedro - 25 - The Season 5 Quitter. Does anyone actually remember this guy quitting last year in Hollywood? I guess I could check the blogs from last year (way too lazy for this), but he may have just been edited totally out from the beginning since he quit. Anyway he came back for Redemption and sang some "Fly Me to the Moon." I didn't understand Paula's fascination with this guy. He had a nice tone to his voice, but it just seems too weak for the long haul. Of course, I say this, but I keep forgetting that we're in a new age of Idol. An age where Taylor Hicks has won! SOUL PATROL!!!!! Maybe Nick will prove he can also play the harmonica and dance around in purple blazers and lay on the stage with Ryan and simulate back spasms! Oh blogs are going to be fun this year, aren't they??

Well, there was no way around the long blog this time. It's just numbers, and I couldn't leave any Hollywooders out! We saw 10 of the 35 New Yorkers that have made it to Hollywood. Will New York defy the odds this year and have some serious contenders? Winners have come from Texas, Oklahoma, North Carolina and Alabama.....the odds are stacked against the New York crew. And, since Ruben, Taylor and Bo are ALL from Alabama, the Idol Team has returned there to recruit more from the people who refuse to not where 205's on their attire, the people that will NOT change their hair color or CUT their hair. And we'll be there Next Tuesday to see it all!

Until then, breathe a sigh of relief that we are done 2 weeks, 1 to go. Then you can look forward to me complaining about 2 weeks of the Hollywood Round!


Peg said...

OK Mike, I'm back watching and definitely reading your blog. Lets not put down Taylor, as his album has hit number 2 on the charts, he's sold just under the numbers of Kelly Clarkson in the same timeframe. He's also got his tour going through April and is appearing a the Bogata in Atlantic City, that's impressive. Keep the faith someone good's going to come of this year's American Idol just like the past 5 seasons.

Mike V. said...

Okay Okay! I will try to take it "a little" easier on Taylor. But we all have our favorites. I definitely did root for Taylor last year, and there wasn't really a front runner to win it (even though Critics and Simon would argue it was Chris Daughtry's to lose). I just can't help thinking about last season and all of his crazy antics on stage and questionable performances (in the middle of the top 12 rounds) and think "What were we all thinking???" And it's reinforced by what I've seen with him on the talk shows promoting his new album. Just my opinion though. But, it just seems last year turned into a popularity contest and everyone wanted to prove Simon wrong. Maybe Taylor will prove me wrong in the long run. Regardless, it looks like making controversial comments inspires people to COMMENT more on the blog, so maybe I'll keep doing it! lol

You can ask Patty though, I have never let down on my comments about Mr. Aiken, even though I may have supported him in Season 2 (over Ruben) lol

I have no doubt that there will be someone good to come out of the season. I am just tired of the Audition Episodes as always, and it's tough to write about with a positive attitude! lol But only a couple more weeks to go!