American Idol Season 8 Finals Results Show, Wednesday May 20, 2009

I am trying to prepare to have Idol waste two hours of my life tonight.  I expect multiple sub-par musical acts, tiring retrospectives of the season, bad group songs, 15 minute commercial breaks, and badly scripted dialogue from Ryan that will go on and on.

Both contestants looked very odd dressed in white, and it was not a good look for either of them.  Can’t we get the microphones turned on by now?  It’s the last show in Season 8!

After watching the first song, I have an idea.  Record tonight’s performance, buy their album when it is released (if you want to).  Then, instead of pending your hard earned cash, and wasting your time going to see them in concert, you could just play the video from this performance while you listen to the album.  Since they will be lip-syncing, it will be the same vocal recording anyway.  Also, what the hell was Alison screaming at me during that song?

David Cook took the stage, and reminded us why he won last season.  See Jordan, that’s what a real American Idol sounds like when he puts out an album (also, Rueben, Taylor and Fantasia can take notes on this).  That was a great song.  I also liked the classy way he chose to pay tribute to his brother.

I was intrigued by the Golden Idol Awards.  This could actually be funny, and it was for a little while.  Then, they brought out Norman Gentle.  I quickly realized how little I had missed him since he left the show.

Lil Rounds came out and spared up Queen Latifa.  She sounded the best that she has all season.  She also looked better than she did all season.  Maybe she just looks better in black.  The song was better than a lot of stuff that they have had on the show this season.

The song with Alexis Grace, Anoop Dseai and Jason Mraz singing “I’m Yours” was just great.  That song is just cool.  Anoop was really good on it also.

Then we got the obligatory Kris Allen retrospective.

Kris Allen and Keith Urban then teamed up for a duet on “Kiss a Girl.”  It reminded me of a country version of a Bryan Adams song.  It was pretty good.  It seemed like an odd change for Kris who showed us he can sing Michael Jackson and Santana this season.

The girls from this season came out and did a song next.  I was reminded immediately why I hate that ice-pick of a voice that Megan Joy Corkery has.  Then I realized that she is Fergie Jr when Fergie the stage (I now know I hate her voice also).  For some reason someone thought it would be good add Black-Eyed Peas to this recipe.  It was horrendous, but still better than Lady Gaga or Jamie Foxx.  My favorite part of this was the technical difficulty.

Katrina Darrell the Bikini girl has definitely improved her talents during the time she was off the show.  Having Kara sing with her was pretty genius, but I don’t think Katrina really needed her to augment the performance.

Allison then greeted us with the worst version of “Time After Time” that I’ve ever heard.  It’s a pretty song.  All of that affectedness makes it sound awful.  Thank goodness Cyndi Lauper was there to bail it out.  That is, until it just got weird near the end.  Next time I would rather hear Cyndi by herself.

Danny then came out and sang “Hello.”  Lionel is better, but then he joined Danny on stage.  I wish he would record some more popular music again.  I really like Lionel’s voice.  It is holding up much better than a lot of the artists that they have on the show.  How about him as a mentor next season?

Then we got the Adam retrospective.

Adam was wearing the craziest, gayest outfit I have ever seen on the show.  He sort of reminded me of the Gimp from Pulp Fiction.  He was joined by Kiss.  There was something wrong and unstable about this pairing.  Kiss’s act wore out 30 years ago.

If this is what Clive intends to do with Adam, he will be the next Idol failure.  He could make a ton of money if they could figure out how to incorporate his voice into some pop music, but I’m afraid that he will be forced to go toward the metal stuff.  That would be a failed move.  That audience does not watch Idol, and the Idol audience does not listen to that stuff.

Santana took the stage after the break.  The guitar solo was cool, and the way they brought Matt out for Black Magic Woman was the best piece of production this season.  The group song was pretty good there also.

Megan Joy, Michael Sarver and Steve Martin.  What the hell?  Michael was good.  Megan destroyed bluegrass music.  It is now dead as an art form.  I liked the song (after I successfully blocked Megan out).  Who knew Steve Martin was a blue grass artist.

The guys’ song was a little uncomfortable, but it let us know that Rod Stuart and his Jacket were in the house.  I think the frog in his throat should have received a credit also.  The dancing was completely unnecessary, but the mandolin player was cool.  Did they really say he was going on tour?  Really?  Sure it has been cancelled after that.

I realize that the next bit was just to give Tatiana an excuse to sing, but she did not belong with those people.  However, the bit with her and Ryan was actually funny.

Adam was finally going to sing a Queen song, “We are the Champions”.  I’ve waited all season for that even if it is a duet with Kris.  It was great.  It was also good that some of the member of queen were there.

And the winner is…Kris Allen.

I hope they both do very well.

American Idol Season 8 Finale, Tuesday May 19, 2009

What the hell is a “Guy Miner?”  Ryan Seacrest is an idiot.  I am sure he said something else, but both my wife and I heard ‘guy miner.’  I still don’t have any idea what he was saying.  Can’t we get some better writing than this on the biggest show of the season?

Adam Lambert, “Mad World”- I liked as much as I did the first time.  This is the perfect song for him.  In fact the longer version makes it much better.  His soft voice is brilliant.

The judge gushed over it except for Simon who oddly chose this song to discover that Adam is theatrical.

Kris Allen, “Ain’t No Sunshine”- The beginning of this song was simply amazing, and when it picked up, it was just as good.  I think that he looks better behind the piano than with the guitar.  This was the best that he has done, and was every bit as good as Adam’s

The judges loved this one as well.  Simon called round one for Kris.  I thought this was a little unnecessary.

Simon Fuller picked the songs for the second round.

Adam Lambert, “Change Is Gonna Come”- I thought that this was an odd choice for him, but of course, he could sing anything.  I might have thought that Aretha was singing this.  Amazing.  His emotion was incredible.

The judges practically lost it with praise.  Simon informed us that Adam was back in the game.  Really?  Was he really ‘out of the game’ in the first round.  I think Simon is drinking his own Cool-Aid.

Kris Allen, “What’s Going On?”- This song was cool, but it definitely paled in comparison with the last song by Adam.  That being said, there was really nothing to criticize about the performance.

Randy described it well as a song that was a little ‘light’.  Kara and Paula loved it.  Simon did not like it very well.  These criticisms are why I do not think someone else should be allowed to pick songs for the contestants at this point.

Simon informed us that Adam won round two.

Adam, “No Boundaries”- I hate the idea of Idol (and Kara) using this point of the show for self-promotion.  That being said, Adam turned this into a pretty respectable rock anthem even if it the lyrics were a little sappy.

Randy thought it was a little pitchy.  Kara and Paula loved it.  Simon simply congratulated him.

Kris, “No Boundaries”- His version was little more traditional.  It was very good until he forgot the lyrics… twice.  I don’t think you get to do that it this point in the competition.  The song was also a little too high for him.  His voice just sounded tired.

Suddenly, the judges did not want to judge him on this song.  What?  Isn’t that what this show is all about?  They seemed to have a decent time judging Adam’s performance of the song.  I have an Idea.  LET THE CONTESTANTS PICK THEIR OWN MUSIC!!!!  Then we don’t have to worry about this nonsense.

I like Kris and I wish him well, but I choose Adam from the first to the last.

American Idol Top 3 Results Show, Season 8, Wednesday May 13, 2009

I am really worried about tonight’s results show.  Everywhere I look, I see more and more Adam haters.  Please, please let him go through.

The Night At The Museum intro was one of the worst examples of unfunny cross-promotion ever to be foisted on the television medium.  So, so unnecessary.

Someone needs to introduce Alicia Keys to a wonderful new invention, the bra.  She might as well have been naked (Hmmmm.).  Her job was to introduce us to one of the strangest performances ever seen on Idol.  She explained that he, Noah, had learned the song ‘in English’ this week, and it was obvious that the producers’ strategy was to put a lot of singers around him and keep him way, way down in the mix.  He definitely exuded some sort of confidence, but you would have thought the Idol producers and choreographers might have assisted him a little with his stage performance.  Then again, I could be very conspiratorial and assume that the Idol producers and chorographers did assist him with his performance, and that was what they thought would have the most audience impact.  I truly hope that they would know better than to do that.

Danny was brought out onto the stage first, and all we got was ‘blah, blah, blah’ from Ryan.  Kris came out to more of the same.  Apparently Ryan thought that no one in the viewing audience watched the show last night.

I was sort of worried about the Jordan Sparks performance because I haven’t liked anything she has done since she was a contestant.  I did not care for this song either, but for the most part she sang it well.  I find that I spend a lot of time every season criticizing female Idol contestants for choosing songs that are too low for them.  This criticism rises to a whole new level when the song that you choose to sing is off your own album, and it is too low for you.  This, unfortunately, was the case for Jordan.  She also screamed much of the song.

We, then were treated to the same thing for Adam that we got for Danny and Kris.  “Blah, blah, blah.”  Couldn’t this have been a 30 minute show, and allowed me more time to watch Lost?  He deserves extra points for being smart enough to sing the national anthem straight up without tricking it up at all.  Greatness.

Nice production having Katie Perry’s mic turned down when she started to sing.  You would think that they would get better at this after 8 seasons.  As far as Katie Perry went, she also sang a song that was too low for her that was hers.  She looked hot, if also slutty, and her song was the equivalent of vocal nihilism.  Does anyone worry about writing a lyric at all anymore?  There may only be seven different notes in music, but there are millions of words and phrases in the English language.  This is where you can get very creative in a song.  She was also very pitchy.  At least she did not use a voice harmonizer.

Kris was named in the first spot next week, and my stomach got a knot in it.  Adam went through, and my faith in America was once again restored.  Good bye Danny.  He was really very good.

American Idol Top 3, Season 8, Tuesday May 12, 2009

Tonight the contestants are singing two songs.  I like it when the contestants get to pick their own songs without a bit being involved.  It allows them to perform at their best with no excuses.  However, I hate it when the judges pick songs for the contestants.  Someone always picks something stupid, or one of the songs is much better suited that the others.  There is something inherently unfair about this.  Fortunately or unfortunately we are getting one of each tonight.  I just hope the judges do not criticize the song choices that the contestants did not get to make as they usually do.

Danny Gokey, (Paula’s Choice) “Dance Little Sister”- I wondered why Paula would pick this obscure song for him.  The vocal was mostly good, but he screamed a lot.  It was also fairly manic.  There was very little range in the notes so it did not show off his vocals.

The judges liked the vocal and did not like the dance.  Simon criticized Paula’s song choice.

Kris Allen, (Kara and Randy’s Choice) “Apologize”- I did not really know this song either, but I liked the tune much better than the first song.  His vocal was great, and he emoted very well.  It sort of reminded me a little of Cold Play in a good way.

Kara is simply an idiot.  I have no idea what she meant with her criticism.  Simon criticized Kara for finding fault with the song that she chose, and the blow up was great  The review was mixed at best.

Adam Lambert, (Simon’s Choice) “One”- Simon’s choice was great.  A great song, a singers song, and popular song.  The start of the song was beautiful.  The soft tone to his voice was amazing.  Then, the song took off, and became the regular Adam Lambert show where he routinely shows how much better he is than the other competitors.  He made it his own, and changed it up a lot, but it was still great.

Danny Gokey, (Danny’s Choice) “You Are So Beautiful”- This song is the perfect choice for him.  The instrumentation at the beginning of the song was weird.  The soft tone was a little strange, and it was pitchy in the early verses.  The backup singers were way out of place, but the big note was very good.

The judges loved it with Simon saying that the vocal was ‘master class’.

Kris Allen, (Kris’s Choice) “Heartless”- It reminded me more of Santana than Kanye West.  It was cool and upbeat, but I would not call this a singer’s song.  I thought it was a very different choice for him, and the acoustic guitar was good, but I expected much more of a vocal performance.

The judges loved this performance also as much as Danny’s.

Adam Lambert, (Adam’s Choice) “Crying”- I said last week that he should be able to sing Aerosmith, and I was right.  The background vocal was way too loud, but his vocal was perfect once again.  I am trying to think of a time this season when they criticized his vocal, but I cannot think of one.

They loved his performance once again.

These three guys are all great.  I picked Danny and Adam at the beginning of the season, but now I will have to choose Kris and Adam for the final.  Kris is simply a better vocalist than Danny.

American Idol Top 4 Results Show, Season 8, Wednesday May 6, 2009 Rock Week!

Oh No!  Paula is going to sing.  Please say it isn’t so.  I thought Paula sang last year, but my wife reminded me that it was just a video.  Ryan told us this has never happened before.  No Doubt may not be my favorite group ever, but Idol has definitely had worse, and Gwen Stefani is hot when she is not looking weird.  I’m really looking forward to being able to hear another serious Idol recording artist in Chris Daughtry this evening.

The group song was good again, and I thought it was cool that Slash played with them, and did not try complete self promotion like most guests on the results show.  Good for him.

Paula started singing, or maybe I should say her computer started singing, and she somehow took credit for it.  I hate, hate, hate the voice harmonizer.  It is the worst thing to happen to music since Tiny Tim.  I am convinced that she did not sing one note of that live, and even recorded, it was a terrible song.

No Doubt sang “Just a Girl.”  I have always found this song a little irritating, but I respect the fact that they sang one of their hits.  I would have preferred “Don’t Speak.”  Gwen Stefani is so irritating.  I know that she is a true hottie when she wants to be, but she chooses to dress like a 12 year old who wants to be Cyndi Lauper.  The guy with the tutu was ludicrous.  That statement may be redundant.

I hate recaps in general, but do we really need to recap other seasons?

I was surprised to see that Kris was immediately safe, and I was suddenly worried about Adam.  Then, of course, we went to commercial break.  Afterward, Ryan made me even more nervous by making the allusion to Daughtry’s early exit a few seasons ago.

Daughtry’s performance was great.  Thanks for that Taylor Hicks pick America.

Thank goodness Adam was safe.  It was Danny and Allison alone, and Allison was sent home after delivering her best performance.

American Idol Top 4, Season 8, Tuesday May 5, 2009 Rock Week!

It seems like they waited a long time to roll out ‘rock week’ this season.  This should help Allison, Adam and Danny more than Kris.  I just hope Adam does not go too over-the-top with this.

The first thing that Ryan told us was that the stage had partially collapsed, and the contestants were not able to have a run-through before the show.  He also informed us that they would be paired up in duets.  I don’t think that I like this at all.

Slash is the perfect mentor for rock week.  I hope Idol is able to get more mentors of this caliber.

Adam Lambert, “Whole Lot of Love”- Hearing Adam sing a rock song is like hearing Lincoln give the Gettysburg Address.  It is simply great, and as it should be.  I’ve given up trying to find faults with his vocals.  There are none.

The judges completely gushed over it.  Simon said that it could not be topped.

Allison Iraheta, “Cry Baby”- Her voice suited this song perfectly.  It may have been a little screechy, but the style of the song absorbed it well.  I thought it was the best song she has sung in the entire competition.  The vocal was also perfect.

The judges were mixed at best.  I thought their critiques were pretty confusing, and I’ll be surprised if she gets anything useful out of them.

Duet: Kris Allen and Danny Gokey, “Renegade”- This duet put all the group songs in the history of the show to shame.  The harmonies were great.  I thought they were both very good, and I just hope the judges do not split hairs to try to determine which one was the better of the two.

The judges were generally positive.  Simon had to pick Danny over Kris.

Kris Allen, “Come Together”- I thought it was a very passable version of this song.  It was another vocal that I did not have one problem with.  Once again, we are splitting hairs at this point.  The question is which song is greater, and I liked the first two better

Randy liked it.  Kara and Simon did not like it and were overly critical.  Simon was right in comparing it to a jam.

Danny Gokey, “Dream On”- The scream in practice was simply bad.  In the performance, he brought the key so far down that it seemed to suck a lot of the life out of the song.  It was OK for most of the song, but the scream at the end was horrendous.  He should have sang a straight-up rock and roll song.  Aerosmith is way, way out of his league.  Adam can sing Aerosmith, and he is the only one up there that can.

The judges did not like it, but were sort of apologetic.  Simon saying, “I think you are going to be safe,” and Paula calling for a shout out from Danny’s fans seemed a little inappropriate.  How many Kris fans do we have in the house?  I guess we’ll never know because that question was never asked.

Adam Lambert and Allison Iraheta, “Slow Ride”- This was another good duet, but I did not hear near as much harmony as I did in the other duet.  For that reason, I thought the first one was better than the second one.

The judges liked this one better.

I hope Danny goes home because he was simply not as good as the rest tonight.  I’ll probably be wrong about that.

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