So Hollywood this year: 164 contestants perform for the judges on Day 1 with the new option of playing with an instrument (some successful, others not). If you impress the judges, automatic bye to day 3. If you don't...another instrumentless audition to prove your worth! Day 3, the remaining perform to get into the top 50 which the judges will then narrow down to the Top 24 (in tomorrow's episode). No more GROUP performances! YAY! Okay, so I'm going to break down some of the talent into various sections below. See if you agree with my assessments and feel free to provide your own!
- David Cook - 25 - This guy stood out in the auditions for me with his aspirations to be the next Chris Daughtry and his solid take on "Livin' On a Prayer" We saw him tonight doing a little Bryan Adams "Everything I do I do it for you" and I still think he's got the skills. Simon is worried about his vulnerability without the guitar. Well, we saw him in the audition without a guitar and they didn't show him again tonight. So, I'm going to say they are putting him through to the top 24...and America will have the power from there.
- Amanda Overmeyer - 23 - Still got that Janis old school vibe going for her. She sang some Doors tonight and rocked on it. Add in her battle scars from her recent car accident and it makes her story even more intriguing. Although, I did write in my notes, right before Simon mentioned her potential to become monotonous, that her range seemed to be a bit limited. And I was worried about Simon's concern as well. She has a real shot to be unique and go far...but if she's only got the one trick in her bag....then it might not last her too long. We'll see!
- Kristy Lee Cook - 24 - The Oregon Philly auditioner. We didn't get to see her initial performance in Hollywood. All we know is that she had to come back for day 2. And well, she sang "Amazing Grace" again. So I'm a little worried that this is all she can sing! We may see more of her in tomorrow's episode. Jury is out on if she's going to last! But I'm going to give her the benefit of the doubt until I hear more!
Made Me a Believer Tonight
- David Hernandez - 24 - I'm not even sure I recall him from the audition rounds, and I'm not going to go back and read if I wrote anything about him. All I know is...he owned that stage with "Love the One You're With" and gave a pretty flawless performance. Anyone that can get Paula to say "One Hundred Trazillion Percent" is alright in my book!
- Brooke White - 24 - I remember her not impressing me with her audition. But, then the Superbowl advertisements started showing Brooke playing away on her keyboard to a song called "Beautiful" and well....she did her thing! I was sold after the commercials let alone seeing it again in the actual episode. Lots of talent this year!
- Carly Smithson -24 - She was the one that auditioned in a prior season and made it to Hollywood then didn't make it further. Now she's back with tattoos and a blue tongue (several other contestants had that too....did they feed them blue popsicles???). I didn't think anyone else would impress me with a rendition of Heart's "Alone" after Carrie ripped out her season 4 clincher version. But Carly was really really good. I have no idea who is going to win at this point!
- Michael Johns - 29 - I was sold on this guy after the auditions actually but then he made that silly comment leaving the audition room "it can happen to you folks" or something silly like that. He did it again tonight when the band cut him off and he kept singing "i wasn't going to let you ROB me of that one!" ugh.... but then he sang "Bohemian Rhapsody" and really rocked on it! And no cheesy one liners after it. Fine...I'll give up my quest to find something wrong with Michael Johns....for now!
Still a chance to win me over
- Danny Noriega - Well, I'm lying. He won't win me over. But I have to at least acknowledge that the guy can really sing and will probably be here for quite some time. But that flamboyant persona (my new favorite "PC" phrase!) just has to be tamed!
- Syesha Mercado - Battled through losing her voice to give a great rendition of "Chain of Fools" Not too bad!
- Asia'h Epperson - After re-watching her audition video and not judging her on performing days after her father died....I actually heard a lot of bad notes. Still, understandable under the circumstances. Anyway, the clip we saw of her tonight was pretty darn good. Not really someone I would be inclined to root for, but there are worse people out there like ones that the judges are force feeding me!
Judges Don't Know How to Quit Them and I just can't figure out why!
- David Archuletta - 16 - I don't know...maybe it's because he performed that "Waiting on the World to Change" again, but I just don't like this kid! Sure he can sing, but he irritates me! And I know I know...I'm going to have to get used to him because all the Moms in the world and all the girls that aspire to be Moms in the world want to take this guy home and pinch his cheeks. But me? I see him losing steam in the top 24...or one of the early casualties of the top 12. Or he could be a Sanjaya like person and stick around. But we have other people auditioning for the Sanjaya role!
- Kyle Ensley - 21 - Well Sanjaya or Kevin Covais...or some kind of cross breed! I mean, yeah...he can sing. And he sang a pretty decent version of "You Raise Me Up" but come on, this guy isn't going to win! They're keeping him around because he's goofy and nerdy and they can crack a few jokes on his behalf from time to time. Maybe he'll surprise me. But I dunno...I just don't see it!
- Josiah Leming - 18 - I dunno, right when I saw this guy telling the world he's been living in his car for a year I began to have my doubts about him. And then watching him cry and cry and cry and then sing in his best British accent a weird song he wrote and then some Snow Patrol....well I just didn't see what the judges saw! This trend continued tonight with him playing the piano (piano was good though) and singing "WALK THROUGH MY DOOR! WALK THROUGH MY DOOR! WALK THROGH MY DOOR! WHY DON'T YOU LIKE ME? WALK THROUGH MY DOOR!" Wow, Josiah! Very creative lyrics. And Simon calling it the most memorable performance of the day? Well, granted...I remember it! I didn't even have to look at my notes! Those were some tough lyrics! And then the debacle of his final performance where he couldn't work with the band...so he asked them to leave and destroyed "Stand By Me" One more time....I JUST DON'T GET IT! Why is he still in the competition? Sure looked to me (and it could've been good editing) that they judges felt bad for him because he was crying. But I've already talked to a few people that say they can't help but like The Josiah! Well, don't count on me jumping on that bandwagon anytime soon. I just don't get it!
And of course since I mentioned everyone else, may as well mention the other 2 that were given props:
- Robbie Carrico, Ramille Mulaby
Good Riddance to:
- Ghaleb (still don't know why they let him through!)
- Beauty Pageant Girl - PAULA ABDUL IS MY HERO for voting her out!
Feel a Little Bad for:
- Angela Martin - Single Mom performing to help her daughter. Father was killed since we last saw her. Still, she wasn't able to win the judges over and continue her dream. It's okay, because there is still an Angela Martin on NBC every Thursday on THE OFFICE!
Well that's all I got. Do you all agree with where I placed everyone? It's still way too early to figure out who is going to thrive based on the clips they've given us. We'll get our top 24 tomorrow night and as always, I'll try to pick the top 12 out of there. And then, the real competition can begin! Hope you enjoyed my ramblings!
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See everyone tomorrow as we break down the top 24!