People Underestimate the Value of a Good Ramble

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The Idols Sing Their Idols

This week on American Idol, the guest mentor is Stevie Nicks. Although, I would never have been able to tell by looking at her.  The kids also get some more unheeded advice by Tommy Hilfiger. Then we get to be thrilled by the Idols singing songs by their idols. I'm guessing these are all people who were born after 1980.

Colton Dixon - Everything, Lifehouse - So this week Colton is also taking it to church, although his church seems to be more laid back and emo than the one attended by Joshua Ledet. I didn't hate that, but I didn't love it either.  I wasn't moved, but maybe there was more emotion in the live performance, cause the judges seemed to love it. I guess Uncle Nigel, along with Jimmy, has also decided that Colton is the dark horse in this race.  Better him than PhillipSquared.

Skylar Laine - Gunpowder and Lead, Miranda Lambert - I guess Skylar has the same idol as Lauren Alaina, since she sang this last year. Or at least I assume she did, since I vaguely recognize it and there's no other way that could have happened, since I avoid country music at all cost.

OK, what exactly is happening here? Colton, Philip and Elise are singing a Fleetwood Mac medley together. Shouldn't these types of group sings be happening tomorrow night? I guess they just need a way fill in this two hour show block. I wish they wouldn't do it at my expense.

Heejun Han - A Song For You, Donnie Hathaway - Apparently, Heejun has come to the realization that American Idol is a singing competition and not just a place for his stand up routine. Or at least that's what they're saying, but could he really be one hundred percent serious with that scarf or whatever on his head? In any case, that wasn't perfect, there were some pitch issues and he still missed the ends of some words, including that "s" that Jimmy told him not to, but it was definitely ten steps up from what he's been delivering every other week.

Now there's some guy with a neck brace that I'm guessing everyone but me recognizes. But I don't care about him, so I'm just fast forwarding through it.

Hollie Cavanagh - Jesus Take The Wheel, Carrie Underwood - I'm totally fast forwarding through this, too.  I almost liked Hollie once,when I thought she just had a speech impediment, but now I'm wondering what this British chick is doing on American Idol. Don't they have Britain's Got Talent over there?  Also, anyone who says that their idol is someone from American Idol just doesn't count.

DeAndre Brackensick - Sometimes I Cry, Eric Benet - You can tell that this is just what the kid wants to be singing, cause he seems very comfortable here. It was probably pretty good, for the kind of singing that it is, but I don't care for all that falsetto. Unless you're Prince, cause then it's OK. And for the record, I mentioned Prince before Steven did.

Jessica Sanchez - Sweet Dreams, Beyonce - Her mom is a performer? Did we know this? If they said the name of this song and who sings it, I missed it. I'm guessing is something so main stream that they expect everyone knows it. I don't. I did a quick lyrics search to find it, which wasn't easy cause Jessica Rabbit seems to be slurring her words this evening.  This was not her best performance, but I don't like her anymore anyway.

DeAndre, Heejun and Joshua do another group sing thing, although I still have no idea why.

Phillip Phillips - Still Rainin', Jonny Lang - It sounded like Phillip said he was singing a song called Steel Rain, so I had to look it up. Please tell me why it was necessary for Jimmy Iovine to get some sort of affirmation from Stevie Nicks on my time. I can already tell that everyone is going to say that was the best thing since sliced bread, but I feel like he sounds exactly like he sounds every other week.  For all I know, he's been singing the exact same song each week.

Joshua Ledet - Without You, Badfinger - Um....his Idol is Badfinger? That doesn't seem right. Apparently, someone covered this in the 90's or something. I guess his tears are meant to convey his deep emotional connection to the song. Or he thought it worked so well for Colton, he figured he should try it out, too.

Does Randy have to keep telling me how he's friends with every single person who's songs are being sung? Was he just hanging out with Donnie Hathaway last week, too?  Of course, since he died in the 70's I'm guessing that would be a little difficult.  Except for Randy.

I am so ready for this show to be over now. Please tell me it's almost done.

Oh no. Another trio. This time its Hollie, Skylar and Jessica. Thankfully I can fast forward. One question though. Couldn't they have done stuff like this back in the days when I cared about the contestants and would have loved to hear them sing more.

Elise Testone - Whole Lotta Love, Led Zeppelin - Finally, a song I like. This isn't actually a singer's song, so it doesn't show her vocals off that well, but it's fun and she's in the pimp spot, so I don't think she has anything to worry about this week.

I think Jessica, Hollie and Skylar could be in trouble this week. But since I fast forwarded through two of those people, maybe I'm wrong.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Billy Joel is My American Idol

Because of my great love for Billy Joel, I felt like I should try to find time this week to post a list of song picks for American Idol tonight.  But even as much as I love Billy, I kinda hate these kids more. So I never did it.

Steven Tyler says "If you can't sing Billy Joel, you can't sing."  He's right. But I think we're going to find out that these kids can't sing. From what I understand, several of them don't even know who Billy Joel is. How is that even slightly possible? But what am I saying, some of them don't know who the Beatles are.

We have Tommy Hilfiger to tell them how to look and P Diddy to tell them how to sing. And I'm here to tell them what they did wrong. So we're all set.

DeAndre Brackensick - Only The Good Die Young - My husband says, "he looks like Leif Garrett" and I said they don't know who that is either. DeAndre has taken all the advice, his hair is down, he's smiling and bopping around, but I can't help but feel that he has no idea what that song is about. It was weak and his voice didn't quite reach the level it should have. As Randy said, it didn't wow me, but it was OK.

Erika Van Pelt - New York State of Mind - This is an eminently singable song, other than the fact that Billy has a huge range, so he gets low and then high and then low again, but Erika can pull it off if she doesn't over sing. At first, my husband was dreading the new hair, but he eventually had to agree that it looked really cute. I had to agree that the new hair was probably the best part of her performance.  Well, I don't mean that exactly, but I think she could have been better.

Joshua Ledet - She's Got A Way - So I guess it has to be church every single week with Joshua.  I like him, I really do, and I've got nothing against taking it to church.  But I think sometimes you have to show that you can do something that's else. Like DeAndre, it felt like he had no idea what he was singing about. He can sing, though. I mean, he can sang.

Steven Tyler doesn't know She's Got A Way? How is that possible. As soon as he said that, my husband and I turned to each other with a look. You know the look. I'm just guessing that maybe he didn't recognize it being sung that way.

Skylar Laine - Shameless - I had the album, Storm Front, that this song was on, but I didn't recognize it  sung this way.  I had to go find it on youtube so that I could remember what it should sound like. My husband said "I've never heard this before in my life, but she sounds a little flat." I know he has heard it, but just not with a twang.

If I'd know they were going to sing songs that didn't come off the Greatest Hits album, I would have suggested that someone sing Just A Fantasy from Glass Houses. That is seriously one of my favorite Billy Joel songs and every time we heard his heavy breathing, we'd all scream. Of course, we were in our teens, but still.

Elise Testone - Vienna - How could Jimmy Iovine say people won't know this song? Who are these people and who put them in charge of picking music if they aren't familiar with an artist like Billy Joel's entire song book?  This is off The Stranger album. I had that one, too. Cause I loved Billy Joel. Did I mention that? Elise reminds me of Mama Cass this week.  I think it's her flowy look and her smokey sound. While I didn't care for the ending, I thought she did an amazing job overall.  Plus, I was so thrilled to hear that song from the Idol stage. So there, Jimmy Iovine.

Phillip Phillips - Movin' Out - Please no. What fresh hell is he going to wreak on this song? I guess they are trying to make this kid a heart throb. I think they have a long row to hoe with that, cause if there's anyone that wants to be a heart throb less than PhillipSquared, then I have no idea who it is.  My husband liked that way more than I did. I thought it was interesting, but I wasn't in love with it. Also, he messed up one line, but who's really paying attention anyway?

I did think he was an idiot to throw away a scarf that came from Steven Tyler, though. I'd have held on to that for the rest of my life. Or at least until after Idol when it could be sold on Ebay for a tidy sum.

Hollie Cavanagh - Honesty - This is a beautiful song, but Hollie made it boring. Also, she didn't hit all those big notes right on, so she came across as a little sharp here and a little flat there. But she still has a lovely voice.

Heejun HanMy Life - When I heard that slow start, I wondered what he had done to My Life. But I see it was all just another little joke from Heejun. Is it just me or is he getting less and less funny? I thought P Diddy was funnier when he called Heejun a con man and said he wasn't even sure he was Asian.  In any case, the singing was bad and he sang the wrong words at one point, but since he's clearly here trying out for Last Comic Standing, I don't think those things really matter.  

Jessica Sanchez
 - Everybody Has A Dream - Shouldn't Joshua Ledet have sung this song? I want to like this performance, I really do. She sang it well, but to me it just felt a little too staged. I think I'm just starting to dislike this kid, cause she's got a 'tude and it's getting on my last nerve.

Colton Dixon - Piano Man - I have the feeling that Colton knew who Billy Joel was before this week and it's apparent as he plays and sings. It definitely felt like he was in his element. I just wish he could have made the song more interesting, cause I was just a teensy bit bored.  Oh, and if there's anyone on this show who wants to be a heart throb...

My bottom three would be DeAndre, Skylar and Heejun, and I really think it's time for Heejun to head back to that comedy club in the sky.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Corned Beef and Cabbage, My Way

My husband is Irish, but I'm not. Although I eat and can cook lots of different types of food, cabbage is probably the one food I really detest. I don't like it or anything you cook with it, like ham or corned beef. OK, let's be honest, I'm not a fan of any kind of pink meat. I prefer my meat to be well and truly cooked through and something about the pinkness of ham and corned beef seems raw to me.

In any case, my husband loves cabbage and corned beef, but obviously it's just not something I make.  His grandmother always used to make it every year and she'd make him a plate.  She passed away a few years ago and after that he'd go to different restaurants every year, trying to find some place that made it as good as his Gram. None of them did.

So last year I started to feel guilty.  We'd been married for 19 years and I hadn't ever made him one of his favorite meals cause I just didn't like it. I decided I'd give it a try. I looked through dozens of recipes online and they were all pretty similar. They called for boiling the meat and cabbage. I hate the small of boiled cabbage. And I'm not a fan of the idea of boiling meat. It seems so tasteless somehow. So I started thinking about how I could make the meal he wanted but cook it in a way that I would feel proud about.

In the end, I decided to roast the meat and steam the cabbage. It may not be absolutely traditional, but once it was on the plate and he was eating it, he told me - and he really meant this - that it was the best he'd ever eaten. Of course, that means I have to make it every year, but I guess he's worth it.


3 lb (approx) corned beef, with spice packet
1 head cabbage
1 large onion
4 potatoes
2 carrots
2-3 cloves Garlic, chopped
Bay leaves
Garlic Powder
Salt and Pepper
Olive oil

I treat the corned beef like any type of roast, that is I rub it all over with salt and pepper, olive oil and chopped garlic and then sear each side in a hot pan. Then I put it in my roaster, on a rack, to roast it.

Put water into the bottom of the roaster, just up to the rack, so that the meat is not in water, but maybe just touching it.  Empty the spice packet into the water and then add a couple more bay leaves and a dozen peppercorns (I don't count these things). Cover tightly with foil and put in oven at 300F for two hours. Take out of the oven and carefully pull back the foil. Don't tear it and be very careful to not get burned by the steam.

Peel carrots and cut each into about 6 sticks, wash and cut potatoes into halves and then quarters. Toss the carrots, potatoes and the half onion in olive oil with salt and pepper, and then pour the veggies around the roast on top of the rack. Cover back up tightly with foil and put back in oven for another hour at 300F.  Turn heat up to 375F, remove the foil (being careful to not get steam burns) and roast for an additional 20 mins. Remove from oven and let the roast sit for a few minutes before cutting.

In the meantime, cut the cabbage and onion into quarters.  Put the cabbage and half the onion into the steamer pan, salt and pepper. Fill the bottom with water, add bay leaves, peppercorns and garlic (again, I don't actually measure, but just put in enough, you know?). When there is about an hour left, bring to a boil and then turn down the heat to medium. Keep it bubbling with a lid on until tender, 30-40 mins.

In our house, this makes two meals, both eaten by my husband.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Eliminating the Top 10

Since our move, as you may have heard, I cannot record more than one show at a time. Also, I have to watch the channel that's being recorded, so the DVR is basically useless. I mean why would I want to record the show I'm watching.  (To watch it over and over and, say, over again. Of course. Which is just crazy talk, right?) So anyway as a result of a severe show conflict on Thursdays, I find I am unable to watch American Idol when it airs. This basically means that I don't have to force myself to sit through an hour of eliminations. But it also means I don't get to recap that hour.

I'd do a recap of the show I did watch, The Vampire Diaries, but I don't want to.

In any case, it has occured to me that Top 10 is generally when I pick the order in which I think people will be voted off American Idol. That being said, I still don't feel like I have any idea who these kids are yet, so I'm not sure how this is going to work. But I decided to give it a shot.

Interestingly, at least if you're me, I started putting this list together Thursday morning before we knew who the Top 10 would be and I just started randomly listing them to get them into order and realized I only had 10 names.  I was missing someone and I honestly couldn't figure out who it was.  Turns out it was Shannon Magrane, so this clearly means I'm psychic. Or something.

Anyway, here's my list.  Every time I look at it I want to switch people around again, so I'm just gonna stop right now.  Keep in mind that Erika and Elise are basically interchangeable so either one could go at any time.  DeAndre and Heejun only hang on past them cause they are guys and people seem to like them for some reason.  I'm guessing it's cause little girls think DeAndre is cute and grandmas think Heejun is funny.

10. Erika Van Pelt
9. Elise Testone
8. DeAndre Brackensick
7. Heejun Han
6. Skyler Laine
5. Colton Dixon
4. Hollie Cavanagh
3. Jessica Sanchez
2. Phil Phillips
1. Joshua Ledet

I'm probably way off, cause I just think Joshua should win, not really that he will win. The winner will most likely be PhillipSquared, the resident WGWG.

But a girl can dream.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Anything Can Happen On American Idol, But Hardly Anything Does

Ryan Seacrest tells us that "when you are doing a live show, anything can happen" and "This is American Idol." My question is if this is the live show starting now, how was he able to go back in time and tape that beginning segment, setting us up for them to kick off Jermaine Jones on live TV tonight?

Oh. This show isn't really live, is it??

The theme tonight is songs from the year they were born, that is 1983 to 1995, all after I graduated from high school. Sigh.

The sound is somehow off on Fox for us today, so voices are moving and the sound is happening at different speeds. This will probably be the most interesting that happens on Idol tonight.

Phillip Phillips - Hard to Handle, The Black Crowes (1990) - He gets the sympathy vote by telling Jimmy Iovine and that he needs to go have surgery to remove kidney stones. Or something. I have no sympathy, so I'm not really paying attention. He basically sounded exactly the same as he's sounded on every song we've heard him sing so far. The only difference is that he didn't have his guitar. Also, I think Constantine did this song better in Season 4.

Jessica Sanchez - Turn the Beat Around, Gloria Estefan (1995) - Jessica says she was such a little diva. Really? Cause I never would have guessed. #sarcasm Anyway, this song is actually from 1976 and was sung by Vicki Sue Robinson, but then when did anyone on this show ever care about facts. Little Jessica did not sound too great this week, and not just cause I don't like her, but because it just seemed like she was out of breath and chasing the melody for most of the song. She ended strong and I guess that's all that matters. I like how the judges danced around their criticism so that poor Jessica, stuck in the second spot, won't get voted off this week. For the record, I just checked out the list of the Top 100 songs from 1995 and there were plenty of good songs she could have chosen that would have sounded better. I'll Stand By You, The Prentenders, was on there, as was Kiss From a Rose, Seal. Not necessarily ballads, but still songs she could have shown her vocals on better. Also on the list was Colors of the Wind, from that Disney movie, that little Thia Megia sang last year.

Heejun Han - Right Here Waiting, Richard Marx (198?) - I have no idea what year he was born, but I think this song is from 1988 or '89. I don't care enough to look it up. If his parents said, I didn't look up and catch it in time and since they didn't speak in English, I have no idea if what they really said is what it said on the screen anyway. I like Heejun's voice, it's very smooth and this is probably an OK song for him, except that he seems like he's missing the melody a bit. What I don't like about him is how there are no big moments. I'm not saying he needs a glory note or whatever, just a moment in the song where it doesn't sound like elevator music. My husband liked it.

Elise Testone - Let's Stay Together, Al Green (1983) - Um...Al Green wrote this song in 1972, but I guess they're pretending it was written by Tina Turner. In any case, she sounded much better this week than last week, and I didn't hate her last week. It did not, however, cause me to want to make babies.

DeAndre Brackensick - Endless Love, Lionel Ritchie (1994) - Poor little DeAndre....he was adorable, but how could his mother do that to him? Once again, this song was written and sung in 1981 by Lionel Ritchie and Diana Ross, but I guess Luther and Mariah covered in 1994, so that counts, right? Some of that falsetto was a little off, I felt, and I also think he might have done better on the Elton song he wanted to sing in the first place. It seemed unfair of the judges to say it was the wrong song choice for him when he didn't even make the choice. But I guess that's what Idol is all about.

Shannon Magrane - One Sweet Day, Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men (1995) - I have a hard time remembering that she's actually only 16 years old. She's such a giant it makes me think she's older. Shannon says this was by Mariah Carey and Will Smith, but since she was just born like 10 years ago, we can give her a pass for confusing The Fresh Prince with Boyz II Men. (Of course, she could have been saying Wanya (Morris) and I just thought it was Will Smith.) Of course, while I was trying to make sure I was right about this, I totally missed her singing. I didn't hear anything glaring, so maybe it was OK.

Colton Dixon - Broken Heart, White Lion (1991) - Leave it to Colton to pick a random song by a completely random group that no one remembers. He could have done Shiny Happy People, REM. But whatever. I liked him last week and this week he sounded exactly the same as last week but just on a totally different song, so I like him a little less now. Please, people try to do each song a little differently than the last one so I'm not bored.

Erika Van Pelt - Heaven, Bryan Adams (1985) - I like her better this week, this song seems to fit her low pitched voice much better than whatever it was she sang last week. I've already blocked that out. But again, I have to say, there was no real moment, no crescendo to what she just did. She sorta made it easy listening.

Jermaine Jones - He was going to sing Somewhere Out There. I like that song. But instead, we have a taped segment, apparently from yesterday, where Uncle Nigel sat down with Jermaine and told him that the producers had just discovered that Jermaine had been arrested and charged with four different crimes last year, and he had given fake names. There were still active warrants on him that he didn't disclose and Idol rules don't allow that. Apparently, Jermaine just thought no one would recognize him. Oh, well. Bye, bye, Jermaine.

Skyler Laine - Love Sneakin' Up On You, Bonnie Raitt (1994) - How lucky for her that there was a Bonnie Raitt song the year she was born. They keep telling her she's the second coming of Bonnie Raitt, right? Or some other country person. I thought she was kinda mumbly and rambling, but I guess people like country music. For some reason.

Joshua Ledet - When a Man Loves a Woman, Michael Bolton (1992) - This is a Percy Sledge song from 1966, although Michael Bolton did cover it. In 1991. But we've basically stopped caring about things like that. This didn't sound anything like Bolton's version anyway, no matter what Joshua said. But I loved it! He definitely killed that song and brought us all to church, as they say. It's basically like he's on an entirely different show than the rest of them.

Hollie Cavanagh - The Power of Love, Celine Dion (1993) - This was actually a 1984 song by Jennifer Rush, but when I hear the title Power of Love, immediately I think of Huey Lewis. Um, so wait, Hollie is British? Isn't this American Idol? That's why it sounds like she's got some sort of weird speech impediment, it's an accent! It's surprising to see that huge voice come out of her little person. She almost sounded like she had the same tone as Celine, which I mean in an entirely good way. I do think she faltered slightly on that last note, but she did such a good job all the way through, I don't want to be picky.

Hollie and Joshua were definitely the best tonight. No one else really stood out that much, either good or bad.

I think Heejun, Elise and DeAndre may need to worry a little. But then when has America ever voted the way I think?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Good Guys Finish Sooner Than They'd Like on American Idol

So clearly I was confused (or maybe just really, really hopeful) last night while watching American Idol, cause I somehow got the impression that America would be voting off one guy and one girl and then the judges would be axing a third person based on their own personal opinions. Like say, Jermaine and Shannon would be voted off and then the judges would decide to do away with Colton, too, cause they don't like his hair or something.

But that was all just my wishful thinking that we would somehow go from 13 to 10 in one week, thereby cutting this show down by two eps. It was crazy of me, cause if anything, they would be more likely to somehow draw the thing out even longer, if they only could.

Anyway, so tonight we have to get through an hour long elimination show. Why will they never understand that the elimination show could last about 15 mins? They could just tack it on the beginning of the next week's show. Even then it would have more time then they really need to just boot someone off the stage.  I seriously think more people would watch this show if it didn't take up a million of our life hours every week. Our lives only have so many hours.

I read a bunch of reviews today and I seriously want to know am I the only person who thinks that Jessica was not that great last night?  That song was just a complete, note for note re-boot of Whitney. How many times have they told them not to do that, that they either have to make the song their own, or be better than the original if they want to just copy it?  It seems they clearly want a girl winner this year, even if they did stack the deck with guys, and she's the chosen one. Although it didn't work last year with that nasty little country chick whose name I cannot recall and hope to never hear again.

I wish I could fast forward through tonight, but it's not to be. First up, there's a big group sing and I realize that I cannot understand one word anyone is saying. Also, each and every one of them sounds bad. What was that? Were they all singing from underwater somewhere? How can everyone in the audience like that? Oh, I get it, they are pumping some sort of drug into the air there, aren't they? It keeps everyone in the audience all compliant and excited about nothing and makes them sway in the front like robots. And it makes the judges even more stupid.

The Ford video song is Peter Gabriel's Big Time, which shows someone's good taste in music anyway. Then Jimmy Iovine tells us how hard it is for these kids to sing songs by Whitney and Stevie. Oh, really?

Jessica Sanchez, Elise Testone and Hollie Cavanagh are up for elimination first and after the nationwide vote, Jessica and Hollie are safe and Elise is in the B3 of girls. Wow, what a revelation this show is turning out to be tonight.

Now we have Heejun Han, Jermaine Jones and Colton Dixon.  If only Jermaine was Heejun, why Ryan asked him if he agreed with Jimmy, he would have said, no Ryan, I'm sure Armani does make suits this big. But as we all know, Jermaine is no Heejun.  Anyway, Colton and Heejun are safe and Jermaine is in the guy's B3.

OMG! NO! Lauren Alaina. I had completely blocked out her name and here she is! Why? Idol, why would you do this to me? Wasn't I tortured enough last year? I see she hasn't improved, she's still too full of herself and still utterly lacking in any actual talent. If I can't fast forward, at least I have my friend the mute button. MUTED! Wait, did she just lose her ear piece and then hit herself in the face with the cord? Maybe it was worth seeing her again this year after all.

Back to eliminating. We have Erika Van Pelt, Shannon Magrane and Skylar Laine. Can I just save us all a lot of time and put Shannon in the girls B3 and then send her home?  Although Erika was one of the people who was a judge's pick so maybe America just doesn't like her that much. Ah, so Skylar is safe and Shannon and Erika are joining Elise in the girls B3.

The final four guys, DeAndre Brackensick, Phillip Phillips, Joshua Ledet and Jeremy Rosado, are last to be reviewed and two will be sent to the B3 stools.  I'm guessing Jeremy and DeAndre, cause they were both judge's picks and not voted into this thing by America. Also, Phillip is the WGWG and Joshua is just too good to go home yet. Ooh, there's a twist, Joshua is in the B3 and not DeAndre. That's interesting.

OK, in a fake out move, Ryan just sent Erika and Joshua from the stools of doom back to the couches of safety.  Yay!  So we are going to love either Shannon, Elise, Jeremy or Jermaine.  I'm OK with that.

Can't say I'm a Mary J. Blige fan or that I'd ever really heard anything she did before right now, but that didn't suck.     This is why she makes a good mentor, she has some actual talent. (Plus, she sings with her eyes closed and I once had a choir coach tell us that as soloists we should be looking at the audience while singing, cause you wouldn't talk to someone with your eyes closed, and when you do it while singing it looks silly. Personally, I always think of it as a way of showing a connection to what you're singing. And clearly MJB agrees.)

With only 7 minutes left in this show, we will finally see who is leaving.  Well, first we will see who got the least number of votes for the girls and for the guys and then we will see who the judges are going to send packing.  Please tell me no one has to sing again. Please.

Jermaine is safe, so it definitely looks like Jeremy may be going home, since so far both Jimmy and Steven Tyler said he deserves to go.  Sadly, Shannon is safe and Elise is not.  That's pretty unfair, cause if anyone needs to have gone home it was Shannon. Elise and Jeremy weren't great, but they were better than Shannon.  To be honest, she lost my vote way before singing last night.  I think it was right around the time she started whining about how hard her life is when she's a tall, beautiful, young, thin blond girl who grew up in an upper middle class home with an MVP as a dad. Yes, sweetie, I feel sorry for you.

Ryan says the judges deliberated over the break and then asks Jennifer to let us all know who they decided needs to go home.  She chooses to phrase it thus, "we're going to save Elise."  She could not bring herself to say "we are letting Jeremy go" when she just saved him a week ago.

Ah, well, Jeremy, you were too kind and decent for this show. Plus, you mumbled too much.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

American Idol: The Top 13 Proves They Are Not Stevie And Whitney

I'm fast-forwarding through American Idol tonight, cause I'm not even starting the show until 10 pm and I have to get up early tomorrow.

Tonight it's the 400th episode. This is not something I care about. Anyway, the guys will be singing Stevie Wonder songs and the girls songs from Whitney Houston. You remember Whitney, right? The person whose songs they tell them to never, ever sing. But I guess Idol had to do something to cash in on her recent death.  So Jimmy Iovine sits in with Mary J. Blige to give these kids some actual real constructive advice and criticism.

Joshua Ledet - I Wish - I think he was really good, but I have to be honest. I missed a lot of it, cause my mother had to call me in the middle to continue an earlier disagreement that was between her and my niece. Seriously.  The judges all loved it, but they don't seem to do any actual judging these days, so how can you tell?

Elise Testone - I'm Your Baby, Tonight - Either I don't know this Whitney song or I don't recognize it the way she's singing it, but I don't hate it, so that's a good.  A couple of those notes sound like they aren't quite hitting the way they should, but she seems to have the right feel for it, if not the exact right pitch and timing.

Jermaine Jones - Knocks Me Off My Feet - I'm not sure I know this song either, which is weird, since Stevie and Whitney are right in my musical time zone.  I don't really care for Jermaine's voice that much. I mean, it's OK and everything, but I just feel like he's going to be doing the same thing over and over and over again. But then Ruben Studdard did that he won, so what do I know?

Erika Van Pelt - I Believe In You And Me - It started out too low for me; her voice sounded like a man.  But she brought it up where it needed to be and it really kicked in. I thought that was good, but not amazing.

Colton Dixon - Lately - I was not a fan of Colton coming into this thing tonight, but that was really good. I knew the song, but he did such a great job of making it his own, it could be his first single.  He might go further than I thought he would.

Shannon Magrane - I Have Nothing - This song is just way too big for anyone who isn't Whitney Houston. It's swallowing this little girl whole. (Even if she is 6 feet tall.) I won't even mention the flat notes and terrible timing. She should go home after that, but since the night is only half over, maybe some other girl will be worse.

DeAndre Brackensick - Master Blaster - The 70's seem to be this kids wheelhouse, what with his falsetto and all, but I'm not sure about this song. He definitely slurred his words a lot. I know the words to this song and I still had a hard time following him. It was OK, but he was already voted off once and he may just have be voted off again after that. Maybe it's just me, cause I really liked him last week way better and he was off, so maybe everyone else will like this week better.

Skyler Laine - Where Do Broken Hearts Go - Skyler says no one can compare to Whitney Houston, which is true, but she says that right after she mentions that she didn't really grow up listening to Whitney, so what does she know about it, exactly? The fact that she plans to turn this into a country ballad makes me want to vomit. Seriously, just lose the twang for one song, OK? In any case, she did really nail all the notes and was completely in tune, which is actually a huge plus on this show. But I still hated it.

Heejun Han - All In Love Is Fair - OK, I'm over this kid being a comedian. Can he just shut up and sing now? Anyway, talk about slurring your words, he's the chief offender of just dropping off the ends of words. Look, his voice is smooth and pleasant, but he's doesn't have that much of a range.  He didn't quite hit that high note near the end, but otherwise it was perfect for the easy listening station they play in your doctor's office.

Hollie Cavanagh - All The Man That I Need - Her voice is somehow bigger than she is, but still maybe not quite up to Whitney. But then no one is, really, so I'd have to say she was competent. She hit all the notes and kept to the melody, but she didn't bring any personality to it, that I could see.

Jeremy Rosado - Ribbon In The Sky - He wins the slurred words award. I barely understood one word of that. I like this kid, but if that's his best, he's probably leaving us sooner rather than later. The thing is, he's been way better than that song showed, but he may not get another chance to prove it.

Jessica Sanchez - I Will Always Love You - No one should ever sing this song, ever again. Actually, if Skylar and chosen to do the original Dolly Parton version, it may have been a better idea. I think her biggest mistake is trying to sing it just like Whitney, which is exactly what she's doing. I have news for you, Jessica, even if you win this thing, you will never, ever be Whitney. I completely disagree with the standing ovation judges, cause that was the definition of karaoke.

Phillip Phillips - Superstition - I see that PhillipSquared (as they are calling him on VFTW) is in the pimp spot tonight. But I don't think that's really necessary as he's this year's WGWG (white guy with guitar) and he will definitely go far, whether or not you like him.  My husband just said, "That's a great tune, that's fresh, isn't it? I'd like to hear this on the radio." So he absolutely just made my point about Jessica, that is he took the song and did something with it. So even though he's not my favorite, although I don't seem to have an actual favorite yet, just people I hate less than I hate other people, he was one of the best of the night.

If I'm sending three people home tonight, it would be Shannon, Jeremy and Jermaine. But I'd bet Elise is going before one of those guys, cause she's in the second place death spot and they gave her bad reviews.

Friday, March 2, 2012

American Idol's Top 13

I was at work meetings for the past couple of days, so I didn't have a chance to see Idol live last night. Actually we just got back to the hotel after a work dinner at about 9:55 pm, so I turned on the TV to see the last few minutes and I did see the Top 13. Except it went by fast and since I'm still not sure who all these kids are, I decided to watch it on my DVR anyway.

I will be fast forwarding through a lot. A lot. So don't expect this to be any type of actual recap. Probably.

Ryan explains how this is all going to work, but I'm still unclear cause I'm not really paying attention.  All I know is that when this is all over, we will have 13 people moving forward.

First up is Chase Likens, Phil Phillips and Jeremy Rosado.  I'm fast forwarding through the recapping and Jimmy Iovine's comments, since at this point, it's too late to care what he says anyway. The votes are, as they say, in. Then there is more random chatter by the "judges" which is also unnecessary, but just used as a way to fill in this two-hour time slot.

So...Phil is in the Top 10, Chase and Jeremy are not.  Phil looks a little like he ate something bad and is about to lose it.

Then we have Jessica Sanchez, Hollie Cavanagh, Brielle Von Hugel and Hallie Day.  Hollie and Jessica are in, the others are out. And I can only hope neither one comes back as a wild card.

Joshua Ledet, Heejun Han, Adam Brock. I have a sad, sad feeling that Heejun is going through no matter what anyone says. Not that he wasn't good, but I'd say there were better people that are probably not going through so that he can get a spot. So Joshua is safe, as it should be, Heejun is safe, which could be either good or bad, and Adam is out.

Baylie Brown, Chelsea Sorrell, Skylar Laine and Shannon Magrane. It's been pretty clear that Skylar is the country chick that they want in this competition, so I'd say she's in it. Yes, she is, and also Shannon.  Goodbye to the the others. Except of course for those pesky wild card spots.  But I doubt they want more than one country person in this competition.

Aaron Marcellus, Creighton Fraker, Reed Grimm.  Since I liked Creighton, chances are he's out.  And since we already have Joshua and Jermaine, I don't think we need Aaron. Reed could go either way, but honestly, I don't think any one of these guys was too great. Maybe one of them for a wild card?

Elise Testone, Erika Van Pelt, Haley Johnsen and Jen Hirsch.  This one is harder, cause they've mostly all been pimped a lot and only Haley really sucked. But since only one of them is going through, I'd say maybe Erika and then Elise or Jen for wild card?  Well, it's Elise, so maybe Erika or Jen for a wild card.

Eben Franckewitz, Colton Dixon, Jermaine Jones and DeAndre Brackensick. Again, all of these guys have been pimped to death.  But two are definitely going through and I would say one of those two should be Eben, since they put him in when they should have told him to come back in a couple of years and also, maybe Colton since this is his second rodeo. But then they brought Jermaine back, which makes me think he's the one.  I guess one of them could be a wild card. The final Top 10 stools are taken by Colton and Jermaine.  This makes me think one of the judges may take Eben as a wild card.

So the six people the judges have come back and sing again are Jen, Jeremy, Brielle, DeAndre, Erika and Reed. I guess we will have to wait to see again Eben next year on The Voice.  I'm not gonna comment on what they are singing or how they do, since I fast forwarded through that entire part.  I only had about 10 mins to get through 40 more mins of show and some things don't matter that much. I don't even care who they pick at this point, except I hope it's not Brielle, cause I can't stand her. It's weird how you just don't like people you've never met just cause they are annoying on national TV.

Randy picks Erika, Jennifer picks Jeremy and Steven picks DeAndre.

So there you have it.  The Top 13 on Season 11 of American Idol.

Enjoy. Or don't really, cause I honestly don't care either way.