Wednesday, March 28, 2012

American Idol

28 March 2012

Randy Jackson and Ryan Seacrest tell us every year that this season’s crop of finalists is the best they have ever had. Really? I don’t agree with that and I doubt seriously they believe those words themselves. I think the current talent pool needs some work. I have been watching Idol since season six when Jordan Sparks won. I thought she was good and deserved the win. I can’t say the same for some of the winners of the subsequent seasons.  I mean I really think Adam Lambert should have won over Season 8’s Kris Allen, Crystal Bowersox is a way better artist than Lee DeWyze in season 9. Season 10’s winner, Scotty McCreery, is good but as far as artistry, is he any better than the runner-up Lauren Alaina or my favorite from last year Pia Tuscano? I am not so sure.

As for the remaining contestants for this season, I am not sure we have an outright favorite yet. It seems to change weekly perhaps as it should. But I think the hands down favorite is most likely Colton Dixon. I think he has talent and has a promising future ahead of him as a musician. I think Steven Tyler was right in regarding him as a true musician. I agree, he labors at his art and it reflects in his work. My favorite so far I think is Hollie Cavanaugh. She has a great voice in a Celine Dionne sort of way and she can certainly sing her hits. But she’s not so good outside of that realm of “power” tunes. Her inability to master the low ranges will keep her from going too far in this competition. I really like Phillip Phillps. He’s a good artist but he’s getting repetitive. Every week he sounds the same and ends every song with a trademark growl and scream. Dave Matthews he is not and I hope we see something of Phillip Phillips true soul. Because I know he has a lot of it in him. Joshua Ledet could go far in this competition but he needs to get away from the warbling screaming gospelness of music and take on the songs as they were intended. I say that only because we need to see his true range and versatility. Like Phillips, he tends to stick to his comfort zone and when he does step out, it hasn’t been too good. He is a good singer and a fantastic gospel talent, don’t get me wrong on that. Same thing applies to Skylar Laine, this seasons Reba. Good country sound and I love her energy but step outside that zone and let’s see what ya got! Of course, there’s nothing wrong with putting a country sound unique to Skylar on everything. That wouldn’t be taken negatively either!

Elise Testone is very good. But she relies too much on Adele’s style to come off as anything more than a hack. I think her attitude sucks too. She’s lightened up some but clearly in the early rounds she was festering with diva-ishness and attitude. This world has enough of those and I fear that her maturity could get in the way of her commercial or professional success. Notice how I differentiated between the two. Jessica Sanchez, her voice is good yet undisciplined. Sanchez can sing Whitney, that’s about it. She tends to scream when going for the high notes and loses her breath as a result. The last two contestants, Heejun Han and Deandre Brackensick, are simply outclassed. Heejun has some good core talent but his accent interferes some and his humor is starting to wear thin on people. I liked what he did last week with the Billy Joel song but he needs to adopt a more serious approach. Deandre is just plain awful and is only there because of his hair and purported “cuteness” in a Sanjaya Malakar kind of way.

The thing about American Idol is that they are not looking for someone to be an artist. They are looking for someone to mold into a commercial success and they are using this show, and America, as a beta testing platform to get the value of their corporate dollar. I don’t think that’s a good thing for some of the younger talent coming out. If you are serious about becoming a true artist then American Idol may not be the way you want to go. Some have done well. Kelly Clarkson is a huge commercial success and that suits her niche ell. Carrie Underwood is another huge success. Some of the runner ups have fared very well, Chris Daughtry comes to mind as does the aforementioned Adam Lambert. I hope to hear more from Crystal Bowersox and Pia Tuscano. These are artists that have taken their commercial opportunity and are crafting a good professional, artistic career. I hope the young talent of today can use their example as role models and provide us with some much needed entertainment.

Yup! This world needs entertainment. So I will tune in to the show tonight and watch and vote.  My wife and I watch every week and we make a night of it, preparing snacks and getting all excited about it. We talk about the artists and discuss our thoughts on how well they perform. It is good fun for us. Tonight we will see Heejun Han’s last performance, followed by Deandre, Hollie, Joshua, Skylar, Phillip, and Elise in roughly that order. The final two this year will come down to Colton and Jessica and I have little doubt that Colton probably should win but it will most likely be Jessica. One never knows what will happen when it comes to tallying the winner of American votes.

Have a Blessed Day Ya’ll!!!

Related Links:

Wikipedia list of American Idol finalists:

The Official American Idol Website:

Today’s “Did Ya Know”: It’s “National Something-on-a-Stick Day”!!! Ya luv you some kebabs??? How about a nice fudgesicle??? Today anything on a stick gets its day in the sun! You can put anything on a stick! In fact, if you or someone you know is in a bad mood, you can say “GUT GAWD, does he have a stick up his butt or what???” That’s right! I can be the “something” on “Something-on-a-Stick” Day!!!

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