Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The Top 3 fight for a spot in American Idol's Season Finale! Who did I think was better than Adam Lambert?

Hello fellow American Idol obsessees!  We are one day away from finding out who are the final 2 on American Idol.  Granted, I would be a little more excited if one of those 2 names we would hear was Allison Iraheta, but I have moved on just like I said I would!  I am still being cautious with declaring Adam Lambert the 2nd coming of anything but a high pitched singer.   And I am meeting adversity from many who have fallen for the man who prefers his outfits and flare over the music itself!  I am 95% sure that this man is going to land the season 8 crown.  Heck, even Entertainment Weekly did a cover story on his sexuality.  My mailbox got one big eyeroll last Friday when I saw GLAM BOY gracing the cover.   I am with Simon Cowell, does everyone realize the flat iron champion has not won this thing yet?  He still needs to cake on that makeup for one more performance week!  Okay boys, let's grab our eyeliner and move on to the recap! 

Overall, the three fellas sang very well.  But I have some nitpicking to do and I think one person, not named Adam Lambert had the best performance of the night and deserves a spot in the final 2 for his sheer growth and risk taking during this top 13 run.  Tomorrow's results show will focus on our 3 finalists' trips home, so we'll just mention their hometowns for now.  1st Performance of the night was Judges' choice, 2nd performance was contestants' choice.  How did they do?  Let's find out!


Danny "I have one more motivational speech in me" Gokey

Hometown: Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Paula Abdul's Pick: "Dance Little Sister" by Tetence Trent D'Arby
Danny's Pick: "You Are So Beautiful" by Joe Cocker

Ohhhh Danny Boy!  Well, I can't blame him for the first song choice.  It was, afterall, all Paula's pick.  It was just more of the same from Danny.  Raspy voice and dancing cheesily all over the stage.  Yeah, he sounded good.  I agree with Simon Cowell that Danny's trading off with his "Doo be doo'ing" and the Sax Solo was kinda corny.   Not much else to say about it.  Forgettable first performance.   The 2nd one?  I will give credit for Danny changing up the Joe Cocker classic.  I remember hoping that Taylor Hicks would sing this song back in season 5 and he finally did.   Of course, when he did sing it, I realized how LITTLE there really was to the song.  Not many lyrics at all just a profession of beauty.   So where did Danny get all of this "You turned this boy into a man" nonsense?!?!?  That was disturbing wasn't it?   He just adlibbed lyrics for half of the song until he got to the MONEY NOTE.  "BEUUUU---TI-FUUUUUUUUUUUUL!!!!!!!!"    There you go Danny.  Now yes, you cannot discount his beautiful singing.  It was very nice on his 2nd tune.   And him bringing out the string section was different for him.   And if he didn't go on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on annnnnnnd ON about how he psyched himself up to choose the song he did and "worked out an arrangement" I might have enjoyed it more.   Man that dude is a talker when he gets into interview mode.   If Tony Robbins is ever planning to retire from motivational speaking, I think Danny has a career all lined up for him!    Anyway, back when the top 13 started, it seemed like a foregone conclusion that Danny would be in the Final 2.   Last week, we were praying he would leave us finally.   So where do we go from here?  I guess Ryan Seacrest is right.  It's gonna be a crazy voting bonanza tonight!   My pick though to move on with Mr. Lambert?   It is NOT Danny Gokey. 

Kris "I have no bad words to say about him" Allen

Hometown: Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi's Pick: "Apologize" by One Republic
Kris's Pick: "Heartless" by Kanye West

Can I just say it?  I cannot STAND Kara DioGuardi anymore.  She sounded like such an idiot tonight I believe I was shouting off obscenities at the TV as she was speaking.  (Don't tell my family)   Yeah, in her pre-performance Q&A with Ryan she said she picked this song for Kris to allow him to change it up.  So when we found out Kris stuck to the regular format of the song, she went ballistic on him.  I'm sorry, but since when does Kris become a mind reader with what they want from the song?  And when did American Idol become a show about CHANGING A SONG UP = AMERICAN IDOL VICTORY?    Sure, David Cook was a master at it.  Kris has done it to success this season.   But sometimes, it's just about the vocals people!  You have to show you can sing.   And that's what he did on "Apologize."  He knew he couldn't consistently hit that high note, so he changed it up a bit.  Hit it once in every chorus and then changed it up the other times.   That's fine.  Nice song, nice performance.  It won't be the one people are talking about anyway.   And of course Kara had to take credit for song #2 where Kris DID change things up.   She really makes my blood boil!   Anyway, Kris taking a song by an artist I truly despise, Mr. Kanye West, and turning it into such an awesome tune?  PRICELESS.   All he needed was his acoustic guitar and no back-up.  He did what he does best...Rocked the stage with a heartfelt rendition of "Heartless";    Randy and I even agreed.  It's the best version of that song I've ever heard.   I may even buy it if it's available.   That performance right there is a STAR in the making.   He has evolved from the man that I thought would be voted off first, to the only person left that I feel would make an album worth listening too.  Sorry, an hour's worth of screeching isn't my cup of tea.   Does that mean I think he will win?   No, but he deserves a shot at winning!    AWESOME JOB KRIS!  I'm up to 100 text votes and counting! 

Adam "Let me Change up the Melody and Insult the original Artist" Lambert

Hometown: San Diego
Simon Cowell's Pick: "One" by U2
Adam's Pick: "Cryin'" by Aerosmith

There is changing up a song and making it your own and then there is Adam Lambert's translation of this.  I do not know why Randy Jackson didn't emphasize his point more.   What on earth was that rendition of the beautiful U2 song I once knew?   I didn't hear the melody in there at all!!!  I mean, the chord changes were barely there anymore!   He did the same thing with "Walk the Line" amongst many other songs.  Changed the song so much to the point where it is unrecognizable.  Even Mary J. Blige didn't change up "ONE" that much.   Did he sing well?  Well, duh, he's Adam Lambert.   You know what I thought of while he was singing with the blue light shining down on him?   It seemed like somehow U2's power ballad ended up in the middle of Les Miserables and Jean Valjean was singing for peace!   Don't get me wrong, Les Mis is my favorite musical right up there with Rent, and I am sure Adam would do brilliantly in both of them.   I think Adam would make a great Fantine!  Whoops!  Anyway, I thought the song was a disgrace.  All notes sang in tune for whatever song he was trying to sing.  But that was NOT "One."  Doesn't matter, America and the Judges cannot get enough!  He will be in the finals and is 95% sure to win the whole darn thing.  ROCK OUT GLAM BOY!    Oh right, the Aerosmith debacle.  He decided to sing it straight.  Well, as straight as someone like Adam Lambert can be. (ba dum ching!)   And I still thought it was way over the top.   My favorite part of the performance?  When he couldn't hit the high note that Steven Tyler hit in the original recording. ahhhh Adam IS human!  And apparently as bad as Danny is when he goes for the super high Steven Tyler notes!   It is okay though folks, Paula Abdul is making sure that Adam collects his frequent flyer miles for setting the bar so high for the entire competition!  awwwww how poetic!   I lied, my favorite part of the show was when they ran the recap and showed Adam pretty much doing the same thing for 2 songs straight.  HIGH LONG NOTE with Tongue sticking out and lots and lots of Broadway Vibrato.   That's YOUR future American Idol folks!  I emphasize the YOUR because I still haven't bought into it.   I have tried for 11 weeks to get behind this guy, and more times than not I have been utterly disappointed.    But whatever, life will go on after season 8!    Highlight of Adam's run on American Idol for me was his "Tracks of My Tears" during Motown week.  Never has he matched that performance and in my mind, he peaked too soon.   I will be very conflicted next week when I may actually have to pick this guy to win to keep my streak alive!

We pause for this public service announcement of the AWESOME Carrie Underwood heading to Africa to hand out mosquito nets.   What a great girl!   Idol Gives Back will return in season 9, get excited now!

The Picks

Who is safe? Adam Lambert
Who should go home? Danny Gokey
Who, in the non-evil world that I long to live in, should win the whole thing now? Kris Allen

Elimination Pick: Danny Gokey 

No Bottom 3 or 2 this week folks, just the pick.  Yes, we have all cried with Danny from the first week he graced the stage until the live performances.  We all hoped he would be our American Idol.   Then the backlash happened.   Overexposure, Danny over-selling his tragic past, etc...  And THEN, we realized the performances just didn't add up to the success he had been having.  And now here we are.   At a moment when we can do something about it!   Get him out of there folks.   Kris has done more than enough to prove he belongs in that final with his royal "HIGH"ness (get it? because of the high notes?  I know, you can laugh in the privacy of your own homes).  

That's all I have for tonight. Good Luck America with your decision!  I would love to hear your thoughts on how the night went.  I am sure there are many varying opinions from mine.  My seatbelt is fastened, and I am ready.  Bring em' on!   Results show will bring us Jordin Sparks and Katy Perry.   Hope you enjoyed my ramblings and I will see you after the results!

This blog can also be read and discussed on Gather.com Come check it out and throw some votes my way if you have spare time!


Ian said...

Great, great recap, Mike. Most of what you said is exactly what I think.

Danny's personality annoys me to the point where it's hard for me to enjoy his performances anymore, even if he does sing them well, like tonight.

I'm in 100% agreement that Adam peaked with "The Tracks of My Tears." A lot of people raved about "Mad World," where he was equally toned down, but it seemed to me like he was just copying "Tracks." As for the over-the-top high notes? Yeah, impressive. Most people can't hit those. At this point though, we know he can hit them, so it doesn't exactly blow us away anymore when he does it. "Cryin'" was probably his worst performance of the season.

Both of Kris' performances were better than either of Danny's or Adam's, in my opinion. Kris may not have the technical vocal skills of either, but he knows how to play to his strengths and sell what he's singing. I've enjoyed him more than anyone else this year, and I've voted for him since day one. One of my early favorites has never made it to the finale, so here's hoping Kris can be the first.

Kerry Smith said...

Tonight really proved how much it sucked not to have Allison out there. I was not impressed with the 3 finalists and even though I believe Adam will and should win, his performances of late are not the Adamesque type we knew in earlier weeks.

Gokey, like the other two, is simply a very nice white boy who can sing relatively well. Do I see him cutting albums and such? Hardly. But really now, it's not his fault that America felt his pain from the loss of his wife nor is it his fault that America really really likes him. He simply has that likeability factor that could upset the apple cart here.

Kris is a good singer who has a hot wife and a decent career ahead of him. He won't win Idol but he's done himself a lot of good with solid performance after solid performance.

Overall, I'd give tonight's show a B. Still hate the Paula/Simon sophomoric dynamics that plays itself out week after week (why can't they be separated???) but I'm okay with Kara. Even if she said she had nothing left to say and then said something right after that. LOL She's funny.