AI7 – Round of 8 – Inspirational Songs

American Idol logoIt’s IDOL GIVES BACK week.  ::yawn::

It’s “Inspirational Song” week.  ::sigh::

Michael Johns – “Dream On” – Not a good song choice, I think.  It’s tough to impersonate Aerosmith like this.  I didn’t like it.  Crowd disagrees. Feh. The “dreams can come true” speech is obnoxious.  I’m glad Randy put him in his place.

Syesha Mercado – “I Believe” – Doing an Idol song on Idol?  Scary.  Snake, meet tail. Afer the judges lambasted her for doing a Whitney Houston song last week, she’s taking on Fantasia, who the three judges idolize so much?  Nutty.  She sounds good.  She can sing.  She’s got the chops.  But this won’t go well with the judges.  Good performance.  Amazing voice.  Bad choice.

My wife thought I was crazy as I was voicing all of those opinions above during the song. Then, the judges opened their mouths and hit every note I had just said.  It’s good to be right sometimes. My wife also thinks that Fantasia is overrated and nowhere near Whitney Houston’s level.  I’m so happy to be married to her at times like these.

Jason Castro – “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” – I can’t take these inspirational interviews anymore.  Good song choice for him, though.  He looks silly with the ukelele.  Technically sound, but ultimately boring.  I’ve never seen the crowd sit so resolutely on its hands.  And Randy liked it?!?  WHAT?!?  All three judges loved it.  Hunh. I’ve heard him do this with a half dozen songs in as many weeks.  There’s nothing new here.  I’m bored.

Kristy Lee Cooke – “Anyway” – A country song?  No way! She sounds great, but she’s completely unconvincing in her performance. Her eyes are just dead, when they’re open.  There’s nothing in there that draws me in or makes me want to root for her.  It’s like she’s trying to remember the lyrics more than give a performance.  Shame.  She could be a great recording artist, though.

David Cook – “Innocent” – What is that voice he started with?  Is this karaoke, or maybe an imitation?  That was nonsensical. Worst Cook Week Ever.  Bad bad bad song choice.

“Pompous,” Simon called it.  So did I, just three minutes ago. Hunh.

And I think Cook knows it, almost like he regretted the song choice shortly after he locked it in.

Carly Smithson – “The Show Must Go On” – Lotsa people do very very well with Queen.  Let’s see how she dresses this week.  Did she just compare IDOL GIVES BACK to LIVE AID? Yeah, that does make sense in the wrong ways.

Did she end sooner than she wanted to?  I kinda agree with Randy – it was disconnected.  She has a great voice, but there was something in that performance that didn’t sell it completely.

Simon approves of her fashion sense this week.

David Archuleta – “Angels” –  Good song choice.  Sounds good on power notes, but the lower end is very shaky to me.  I think he should have walked away from the piano halfway through when the choir came in.  He should have gotten up on his feet to sell the song.  As it is, some of those power notes sounded more shouty.  I’m sure the judges will love it, though.  Sure enough, Randy thinks it’s his best.

Brooke White – “You’ve Got A Friend” – Not the TOY STORY song.  Bad song choice.  The song doesn’t age well.  It seems anti-climactic for a show finale.  Maybe she would have been more comfortable sitting behind the piano for it.  She sounded good, but there’s not much that she COULD do with the song.  She should have pushed it in a couple of place more, just to vary it up.

A couple of after-the-fact thoughts: Back in the days when I listened to FM radio, I favored an adult contemporary station that catered to suburban housewives, basically. Their ratings stunk, but their demo was strong, so they survived.  “Angels” and “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” were in the daily rotation there.  I got sick of them fast enough. Simon was amazed the former was never a bigger hit, and had only heard the latter off the internet once.  I heard them both every morning for a year.  I suppose we’re all a product of our influences.

So, in the end, not a great IDOL week.  No Moments.  No standout performances.  No crashes and burns.  Sometimes, I guess you just have to get through it.  Expect a shocking dismissal this week.

Brook, Syesha, and Carly will be the bottom three. Who would be the most unexpected exit of those three?  Carly?  OK, I’ll pick her to go home this week.  I just smell the upset this week.

(Dark Horse of the week: Michael Johns.)

5 thoughts on “AI7 – Round of 8 – Inspirational Songs

  1. OK, now Kristy Lee has an A game! If she keeps improving at this rate, I expect her to be the last female standing — if she doesn’t flat-out win the whole thing. IF she keeps improving. IF.

  2. I have many comments. :)

    First, was I the only one who found Randy particularly obnoxious last night? He didn’t like anyone besides Archuleta and Castro (more on them momentarily). Plus, I’m getting a bit annoyed with his new “I’m not sure that’s who you are” bit. The show is so big on pigeonholing people, for marketing purposes, that unless someone never deviates from that mold, they’re not being true to “who they are.” Carly rocks out for several weeks in a row, and then suddenly he doesn’t “buy” her as a rocker? Confusing.

    As for the performances:

    • Michael Johns – far too handsome, thought he did well, but dear Lord that neck cravat needs to GO. And again with the “I don’t buy you as a rocker” bit from Randy, when two weeks ago Michael pulled himself out of danger with the Queen medley.

    • Syesha – Fabulous voice, can’t stand her for some reason. And yes, the show has now become an oroborus.

    • Kristy Lee – She has a strong clear voice, and you’re right, she doesn’t seem to connect with the material. I thought the choice of “Anyways” was good.

    • Carly – I thought her choice of song was gutsy – too often, inspirational means (on this show) things like puppies and rainbows through the storm and angels. “Show Must go On” is much more a “rage against the dying of the light” sort of inspiration. And no, she didn’t compare Idol Gives Back to Live Aid – just said she heard Freddy Mercury sing the song at Live Aid. Having said all that, it wasn’t her best performance ever, but still thought she nailed it.

    David Cook – of the male contestants, I’m most likely to buy his CD (along with Michael Johns), but last night was not his best.

    David Archuleta – yawn. I just don’t care, and don’t think he’s as good as the judges keep telling us he is. Yes, GOOD voice, but he’s too young to connect with the messages of half the things he sings. And it certainly wasn’t better than “Imagine.”

    Brooke – I love Brooke. I just can’t help it. But she might be in trouble after last night – not that she did anything wrong, everything was great, but it wasn’t even remotely interesting.

    Jason Castro – Yawn yawn yawn yawn. He does the exact same thing every week, and every week we get told how unique he is. And maybe he is, compared against everyone else. Maybe it’s that whole they like him because he’s staying in his preordained little niche. Although last night I kept expecting Kermit the frog to be next to him, playing his own banjo. :)

    Just my thoughts. ;)

  3. Wow.

    Thought that the best performances were by Syesha and Kristy, really.

    I didn’t really like David Cook’s performance and I’ve been such a huge fan if him for so long.

    Michael’s song just wasn’t “him”. I think that it’s going to be hard for him to do anything different style-wise since he had such a great performance with “It’s All Wrong”. That was SO him.

    It was really a tough week, it seemed. What was up with Carly? She just ended the song abruptly.

    Who thinks that Kristy may become the “dark horse” of the competition?

  4. This whole post was worth it so that I could re-learn “oroborus.” Thanks, Patricia!

    Also, I don’t get Michael’s cravat, either. It’s quite the running theme this year, too. Did I miss a fashion magazine article somewhere? (It’s quite likely, since all I read is Go Fug Yourself.)

    And agreed on Archuleta. I think he peaked a long time ago. Just don’t tell that to the marauding gangs of teenage girls with their cell phones and unlimited text messaging accounts. . .

    Chris – Yeah, it sounded like Carly gave up on that last note. Either it didn’t start where she wanted it to, or she felt a tickle in her throat and bailed. Or something. I don’t know, but I heard it, too.

    Juan – The Country vote will keep Kristy in a little bit longer, I’d guess, but I honestly don’t think she has a chance of winning, short of having two unbelievable Idol Momentesque weeks where America suddenly discovers her from out of nowhere. She is a good singer, though.

  5. Patricia, I agree with you on many of your points. I love David Cook and will definitely buy his CD. Innocent is one of my favorite Our Lady Peace songs but it is not an American Idol song. Hopefully his down night won’t send him home.

    And I also love Brooke. There is just something about her that just grabs hold of you.

    While Syesha can sing, I also don’t get her.

    And David Archuleta…NEXT! That kid just drives me nuts, particularly with his whole licking the lips thing.

    I will disagree with you on Jason. While he might be predictable, I do still like him.

    As for my bottom three, I am picking Carly, Syesha and Kristy. As much as it pains me to say it, I think Carly might go in a shocker. (My backup is Syesha though).

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