Tuesday, January 17, 2006

AMERICAN IDOL 2006

Well, it's that time again. Time for all the wanna-bes and superstar gonna-bes to stand up in front of the country vying for the title of the next American Idol. This year, your favorite music blog will provide the play-by-play as we get ready to crank up another season. I picked Carrie Underwood to win it all last year. I picked Kelly Clarkson to win the whole she-bang the first year. Will I be right this time?

And so it begins.

First, a few thoughts on the opening of the show: Seacrest, jacket, ripped jeans. Fashion sense? No.

Another image of Mikalah Gordon!!! And yes, we get reminded yet again how cool Constantine was and how much it stunk that he got eliminated early. And why, oh why, do we get to see Stephanie Sugarman's season 1 debacle of an audition again?

Wow, contestant 34545, try laying off the whoppers! Any bigger and your shadow will outweigh most of us.

Does anyone besides me get creeped out by Paula kissing Simon?

If anyone else sings "Lady Marmalade" they should be immediately shot.

Oh no, more pseudo-rockers....

Is Simon's favorite going to be the Carrie-esque blonde they've been showing on the teasers?

Michael Jackson boy has to be a radio station plant.

No new intro and no new set??

And a lady in high heels attempts to walk up the down escalator...

Still, this promises to be better than Skating With Celebrities.

So far so good!

First stop, Chicago...

Looks like no shortage of losers here. Then there's the judges. Didn't Randy have the gastric bypass last year? He doesn't look a lot thinner. Paula of course looks great. Simon doesn't look a bit different. None of them act any differently. There's the exchange of typical jabs between the judges, they get seated, and now it's time for the contestants to come in and embarrass their families for generations to come.

Derek Dupree gets turned on by himself. That's not eeky or anything. I know the pit stains on the shirt really get my juices flowing. He lets us know that he can sing three pitches: bass, medium, and semi-high. Oh great, he gets to sing an original medley of other people's songs. And now he tries to do a 5.9% impersonation with all the voices. Ouch. Next!

Katrina Yaukey, what are you wearing?? Nice gams, but the boots? She's doing Shock G's voice from Digital Underground's "Humpty Dance"?? Not satisfied with half-cracked rap, the judges ask her to sing just any old thing that pops into her head. Not surprisingly, nothing enters her airspace. Goodbye. UPDATE: According to her website, Katrina is an actress. She has quite an impressive resume. Basically, this was an auditioner who was just looking for TV exposure and not a serious contender.

Justin Sticht is set apart by his unique voice, which is not a good thing. Geeky looking guy. Sings for five seconds. Blows it. Goodbye.

Wonderful. Another set of twins. Nice approach to a contest that can only be won by one person. It'll be hard to wait through the break to see these guys blow it big time.

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And we're back! Cussing by rejected contestants: how new! Holy cow, a drag queen Pippi Longstocking?????? I was hungry, but not now.

And now, the Derrell and Terrell Brittenum twin set. Nicely dressed and nice sound. Great harmony. Wow, I take it back...these guys are good together. I take that back; they're not good, they're exceptional! Terrell goes first with "My Girl." Not bad, except for the beat boxing. Derrell sings "Ain't Too Proud to Beg" and really rips it up. I think they both should go through. They're really good. Both of them go to Hollywood! BONUS: They're from Memphis! Rock on! UPDATE: Further research shows that Derrell and Terrell are a Memphis-based duo named Phocus and have garnered some interest from a couple of labels.

Yay! First Paula-Simon fight of the year.

Dental assistant/hottie in scrubs/lead singer of a band named Catfight has the hots for Simon and rocks the fishnets. Gina Glocksen has a killer voice. She sings Celine's "The Power of Love," a song that really showcases her tongue ring as well as her vocal range. She manages to include Simon's name in the song, which is probably the most over-used suck-up tactic. I like her, Simon's got the hots for her, Randy says yes, Paula accuses her of butt-kissing but says yes. And the streak continues. She goes to Hollywood. Side note: not that I don't love the hooker get-up, but hopefully the wardrobe people can fix this girl up, because she is absolutely amazing looking when she dresses classy. Looks like Catfight might be this year's Pray for the Soul of Betty. Oh yeah, UPDATE: I'm not sure if this page was created by her or not.

Gina Noriega forgets the lyrics, which is actually a good thing because it makes her stop singing for a moment. I wonder if she was the one whose music the Army used to torture Manuel Noriega out of his palace in Nicaragua in the 80's. I used to like "Blue Moon" but not any more. Mysteriously changing the song mid-verse, she fails to be anything other than appalling. Streak broken!

Now we get to hear "Just Mandisa" (Hundley) wail on an Alicia Keys song. Vocally she was amazing. Unanimous "welcome to Hollywood!" Simon manages to squeeze in a fat joke. Paula reacts typically. UPDATE: Mandisa's been at this awhile. According to her official site, "she has performed with such artists as Shania Twain, Trisha Yearwood, Take 6, Larnelle Harris, and Willie Neal Johnson & the Gospel Keynotes. She currently sings and travels regularly with Integrity Music and Don Moen and can be heard on numerous recordings including Don Moen’s “Thank You Lord” and Sandi Patti’s “Hymns of Faith…Songs of Inspiration”, and Travis Cottrell’s “Beloved Disciple” and “The Deep”. Mandisa is currently working on her debut CD, which she plans to release next fall."

Can't wait to see how the cop does after the break!

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Time for the next geek of the week, Kevin Brenneman. Seriously, someone get Napoleon Dynamite a wardrobe coordinator! And while we're at it, a voice trainer wouldn't kill him. Who cares what song he's singing? Yuck! Simon is reminded of a wasp, because he's Simon. Paula repeats her advice that a contestant should be a cartoon voice, which is Paula's way of saying "you suck."

Charles Berry is back again, apparently, not that I remember him from before. He sings an original song about American Idol which is so unfortunately cheesy that the rats are flooding the stage. His voice isn't terrible, but it isn't in any way great. Simon says he needs to be a drag queen for some unknown reason. And that's that. Bye now!

Amanda Rabideau is so excited and she just can't hide it. The young furniture seller and beef cattle shower wants to sing "Something to Talk About." Unfortunately her singing ability is anything but. It's all over but the crying.

Alright, time for Super Trooper! Deputy Sheriff Brandon Groves marches in in uniform, causing Paula to immediately get the vapors. Continuing on with the gimmick, he sings "I Shot the Sheriff." Not that he would need to. I'm sure the sheriff would keel over with one shot of his voice. There must have been some sort of bet going on at the P.D. Paula wants to say yes, based on looks, but just can't do it. UPDATE: Research indicates that Groves is, in fact, a field deputy, Unit 36, in Ohio county, West Virginia. Just this past September, Deputy Groves busted an illegal immigrant smuggling operation after pulling over a van, filled with 17 Mexicans and a bunch of jugs of pee that got spilled all over the highway. He also busted a child pornographer.

This blog will continue...after the break.

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Derek Dupree will get a second chance, because even losers deserve love sometimes. Seacrest tries to help him out on the street, because Ryan will do anything for the camera.

Christine Davis, dressed in full wedding dress regalia, which she claims was her prom dress, rocks a Celine Dion sing. Her voice is halfway decent, but I have a feeling her fashion sense is going to kill her. Paula thinks she lacks experience, Simon hates it and the dress, and with that it doesn't matter what Randy thinks, which is a no.

Someone has the misfortune of hearing Derek Dupree on the sidewalk. It must be tough getting laughed at by a middle-aged couple on the street corner.

Blake Boshnack, aka the Statue of Liberty, gets to sing two words and then Simon boots him out of the room.

Derek Dupree is now ready to get back in front of the judges. Unfortunately, while roaming the street, he didn't choose to stop in a store and get a new, non-sweat-stained shirt. By the way, he still bites.

Grandma threatens to beat up Simon. Ryan is excited by someone hurting Simon's body, or is it he's just excited about Simon's body? Eric Lawhon has a Matthew Miller problem. What is it with the men with women's voices? Mommy must've been slipping him the estrogen pill. Ooh, he's horrible!!! Simon thinks he sings like someone's "auntie." Unanimous no and exit stage left. Grandma squares off with Simon after the audition.

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The rain continues at Soldier Field.

Oochie wally, it's the Hottie Sisters! A long production piece about them must mean they're fairly decent. Brooke and Leah Barrettsmith race through the corn mazes while we watch in rapt attention. Brooke is older and fabulous. Leah isn't bad herself, but can two Hottie Sisters make it through? As for Leah, Randy says yes, Paula doesn't know about either of them, and Simon says no to both. Paula gets to decide the split decision. She says yes, and we get to gawk at them in Hollywood! UPDATE: Brooke and Leah are in a Christian rock band named Two4One. Like most Idol contestants, they've suspended their websites at the request of 19 Entertainment. AI has put a hold on the webpage www.brooke-barrettsmith.com so look for her to do pretty well in the Hollywood round. Apparently, Brooke and Leah were Christian recording artists with Premier Records in Nashville, TN, after winning a Chicagoland talent Search in September. They've also been looked at by Warner Bros. executives recently after publishing a CD called "Open Arms," which, of course, is no longer available for sale.

Yvette Gomez has no lack of self-esteem as she commits brutal acts of murder on an Alicia Keys song. Somebody please stick a sock in her! She doesn't think it was terrible. She's right. It was excruciating. UPDATE: Possible attention whore here. There's a rather unflattering photo of her on Webshots. Warning: not porno, but not work safe either.

Zachary Smits wants to sing "I'm in the Mood for Love" to Paula. I'm in the mood for him to put patches on those jeans. Still, though, he has a good tenor voice, reminiscent of Anthony Federov last year. He certainly has the look; unfortunately, he seems to know this. Paula likes him and says yes. Simon thinks he's charming but vocally he's undecided. Randy thinks a while and says yes. Welcome to Hollywood, Zack!

Jessica Nelson sings a song full of bleeped profanities. Shocker, she's not going through.

And now, it's time for a medley of contestants whining about how great they are and how stupid the judges are for not choosing them. In the midst of one contestant whining, another comes out with a golden ticket. Time for loser girl to drink her hater-ade. Catfight! And not Gina's band, either.

19 contestants made it through from Chicago Day 1. More auditions...after the break!

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Day 2 of auditions:

Mama's boy David Radford rolls into town. He gets a production piece, so I'm guessing he's going to go through. And why not? We've not filled the Sinatra-style crooner slot yet. He breaks into "The Summer Winds," and proves he's got Vegas-style chops. Paula thinks he has the whole package except he's one dimensional, which makes sense in Paula-world. Randy says no. Simon likes him and wants him through. Paula has the deciding vote again. Simon wants Randy to change his mind. Randy caves. Paula says yes. He's going to Hollywood! This may be the first time I've ever seen Simon fight for a contestant to go through.

Someone take the bottled tan lotion and eye liner away from Crystal Parizanski. Crystal has a hearing problem, apparently, when Simon criticizes her look. She has potential, as a 16 year old, but she's just not quite there. She overperforms and ...ok, let's just forget the niceties...she's awful. At least Crystal thinks she's pretty. Crystal's mom gets the ho-bag of the week award. It's a unanimous no and the skeezer mom and daughter crew slither out.

Coming up...more Idol analysis on the only blog that gives you Idol updates live in real time! At least it's the only blog I know of...

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I have to wait till March for more Prison Break?? How unfair is that??

Ever since Nikko and Mario, people seem to think that hats are the way to go. Stewart Benyamin is wearing traditional Assyrian clothing with a hat made out of a pelican. He thought it would be a good idea to win AMERICAN Idol by singing in an Arabic language. He's hideous. Unanimous no. Paula wants his hat, but he tells her to kiss it.

In the tradition of forgetting why it's called AMERICAN Idol, Ukrainian Yuliya Matus tries to sing "Bohemian Rhapsody" so that she can win the competition and get a green card. After taking a kneecap-breaking stage dive, she proceeds to vamp up the room with a rendition that would further turn Freddie Mercury against women. Paula gets in the mood and starts stripping. Simon uses the word "appalling" again. Paula thinks she's sexy, which she is, in a sick kind of way.

Another set of twins on the way along with Crazy Dave, after the break.

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If I see the commercial with the robot shooting up the family's garage again, I think I'll scream. On the other hand, I am kinda getting excited about seeing Debbie Gibson on Skating With Celebrities.

Joshua and Jarrett Simmons are 16 year-old twin brothers, and they're ready to work a Luther Vandross song. Both of them sound exactly the same. Jarrett manages to pull out the "serenade Paula" trick, quickly followed by his brother. They have great voices, and Paula is eating it up. As with most twins, they harmonize well. Randy likes it. Simon likes it, but isn't sure if they're good individually. Randy says yes. Paula, who seems to be running the auditions this time, says yes to both. They both go to Hollywood. The twins are really racking up this season: 3 for 3!

Chicago is almost over, but Crazy Dave Hoover is still waiting to make his impression. By the way, he talks to animals a la Doctor Doolittle. Dave doesn't dig wearing shoes either. He wants to sing an original, believe it or not. He doesn't lack for stage presence, which is not necessarily a good thing. Did Leroy Wells die and become reincarnated as a white man? Can you dig it? Randy says yes if Dave will talk to the animals for him. Simon says no. Paula is the deciding vote. Just for schlock value, Paula says yes, and for some ungodly reason, Dave is going to Hollywood. Some other deserving contestant got passed over for this non-talent. Apparently Dave and Paula both shot up from the same needle in the alley before the show.

What????

Okay, after I have a brain aneurysm from this last contestant, we'll be back

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Alright, I'm back after a computer freeze. Just in time for a compilation of freaks and geeks singing some clips of "Lady Marmalade," further underscoring my point at the beginning.

15 people made it to Hollywood from Day 2 in Chicago, bringing the grand total to 34.

TONIGHT'S ROUND-UP

Losers:
Stewart Benyamin
Charles Berry
Blake Boshnack
Kevin Brenneman
Christine Davis
Derek Dupree
Yvette Gomez
Brandon Groves
Eric Lawhon
Yuliya Matus
Jessica Nelson
Gina Noriega
Crystal Parizanski
Amanda Rabideau
Justin Sticht
Katrina Yaukey

On to Hollywood:
Brooke Barrettsmith
Leah Barrettsmith
Derrell Brittenum
Terrell Brittenum
Gina Glocksen
Dave Hoover
Mandisa Hundley
David Radford
Jarrett Simmons
Joshua Simmons
Zachary Smits

Contestants Outed as Fake Auditions:
Katrina Yaukey

PREDICTIONS: Out of the Hottie Sisters, Brooke is the most talented. Both Leah and Brooke have a lot of experience on stage and are already fairly well respected in the Christian music world, so they should do fairly well. It's not an easy call between the Brittenums or the Simmons twins. Outside of the twin killings, Gina Glocksen stood out the most, and the rocker angle as well as her performing experience may help her out. Mandisa has a lot of experience as well, but is going to be hurt by the image issue. Zachary Smits and David Radford are both okay, but nothing spectacular. Only one sure prediction remains: Dave Hoover will not make it past the Hollywood auditions.

TOP DAWGS: Gina Glocksen, Brooke Barrettsmith, and the Brittenum twins.

Anyway, the next show looks like more of the same mix, including a nice awful rendition of "Straight Up," from the city of Denver. Join me again for more real time analysis and updates at 8/7c right here tomorrow night!

2 Comments:

At 12:43 AM, Blogger DolphinEcho29 said...

I would watch what I say if I were you. You never know who might be reading your blogs so you say my brother Justin Sticht is a bit geeky huh well let me tell you this being a geek can be cool. He may have blown it but that does not make him a loser. Oh and by the way didn't you realize that when the three judges paused they were wearing different clothes? My brother can sing if a person gave him a chance at letting him sing an entire song they would in fact agree. Right now my brother is a local celebrity. DO not put my brother to shame. GO poke fun at somebody else. Its not right to judge someone when you don't even know them. who do you think you are anyways?

~nicole sticht~

 
At 4:56 PM, Blogger J.D. said...

Nicole,

I wasn't saying he was a loser, just that he looked a little geeky. Heck, some might say I look a little geeky. I do agree that often the editing on Idol is deceptive and manipulative. I'm sure he's a great guy, and I give him props for actually putting himself out there.

If you noticed, I was a lot easier on him than I was on any of the other contestants (including some that made it to Hollywood!)

Tell you what...just to show that I'm not a bad guy, I'd like to offer a truce. If you can get your brother Justin to write about his American Idol experience and submit it to me, I will publish it here without editing it or making fun of it in any way. He will be my honored guest. I and those reading would love to hear about the auditioning process. What do you say? Drop me an email address and we'll talk.

 

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