American Idol Auditions 5: Birmingham

Birmingham, Birmingham…pretty city in Alabam’…

And away we go. Now, granted I was taking notes and watching the show while battling a searing, electrifying and inexplicable pain in my left leg. I am attributing it to the stiletto knee-high boots I trotted out today. (That’s what’s missing from “Open Toes” — the verse about Charley horses and tendonitis!)

So we start off (or at least I start off) with Katie Bernard, who has the voice of Minnie Mouse and a decent singing voice. Her style and manner is incredibly affected, though. Randy wouldn’t put her through, but Simon would. The verdict falls to Paula, who finally gives Katie her golden ticket after she drags in her husband (who looks waaaay older than Katie’s 19 years; and seriously, what the hell is a 19-year-old doing married, anyway? Oh, right; making me feel inferior for daring to be 24 and not married!).

Next up is pint-sized Tatiana McConnico. She’s fantastic, she’s spunky, she’s all the things Paris Bennett rightfully should have been but never was. And her style is adorable. I like her a lot, and so do the judges, who call her the best of Birmingham so far.

Following Tatiana is Diane Walker, who seems to have a genuinely warm personality. She’s a big girl, no doubt, but she doesn’t possess Mandisa’s elegance or, if we’re being honest, her beauty. She also has zero control over her voice, and is not put through to Hollywood.

Bernard Williams needs to lose the George Huff-esque ‘stache. He’s good, but…eh. Is it too much to ask for a man who sounds like a man? Interestingly, while Simon and Randy are a’ight with him, Paula thought he was off-key (PITCH! PITCH!) and wouldn’t have given him the thumbs-up.

Next up is Jamie Lynn Ward…or shall we say Kellie Pickler, version 2.0. But Jamie outdoes Kellie in nearly every way possible–bigger boobs, big Claire Bennet hair, and a sadder backstory (her father shot her cheatin’ stepmother, then himself; now he’s paralyzed, and she lives with her grandma). Unlike Kellie, however, who was all tears, Jamie Lynn brushes it off with a drawlsy “it’s okay.” Sure it’s okay; everything’s okay when you’re willing to whore out your family’s personal tragedy for a shot at fame! Anyway, Jamie Lynn’s singing isn’t all that fantastic, but she gets put through anyway. Naturally.

The much-hyped Chris Sligh makes his debut appearance tonight. He’s quite witty and wry, explaining that while others look at him and see Jack Osborne, he looks in the mirror and sees Christina Aguilera. When the judges ask him why he’s there, he says he’d like a shot at making David Hasselhoff cry. Hee! His singing is very good, but nothing special, nothing unique. He’s a personality contestant at best, unless he really improves in Hollywood.

While Jamie Lynn is blonde, big-breasted and vapid, adorable Nichole Gatzman is brunette, olive-skinned, and has a husky alto that manages to inject a little life into “Somethin’ to Talk About.” A little life. Still, I thought her voice was excellent, and a refreshing change from Idol’s usual cabal of screechy belters. And if Nichole were blonde and poutier, she’d either have been passed through to Hollywood immediately, or at least given an opportunity to sing another song. But, this being Idol, she’s turned away.

And that was Birmingham. Lots of talent, but nobody knocked my socks off. So far, Sundance Head is still my pony, and I tend to stand by my picks…

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What the kids are sayin’



"I hate them all. The judges, TPTB, the blatant manipulation, the songs, the contestants, everything. I'm a die-hard Cook fan, but for the love of god, at least try to look like you're enjoying yourself up there! Please? Syesha was awesome but she ruined it by being completely shameless and disgusting. Yes, being on American Idol is exactly like the civil rights movement, except for the part where you're fighting to make the world a better place."



"All I can say after the disgusting display tonight of favoritism towards the mediocrity that is David A. - good luck trying to market and make money off of that kid, American Idol. (Not to mention good luck dealing with his father.) All the teeny boppers may buy up his American Idol coronation single, but they will quickly forget about him before the album comes out. And I shudder to think of a David A. album - song after song of unrelenting sameness and heavy breathing. Why they are pimping him for the win is beyond me."



"This show was simply a hot buttered mess tonight. And Jason "needs to be arrested for what he did to I Shot the Sheriff. But I hope he stays. He amuses me. "

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