Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Wicked Nervous

Usher turned out to be one menschy R & B mentor last night on "Idol."  He gave great advice to the Top Ten.  Told them all to own it, feel it, personalize it, project it. Connect! "Don't be so critical of yourself," he told Lee. And Lee heard him.  He told Big Mike that "chicks dig a guy with a guitar who can sing."  How very true.  I'm going to teach hubby how to play "G" tonight.  He's already got mad vocals.  But I digresss.  The Ab Man (and his bodyguard) seemed geniunely psyched to be there.  Dude may just be the best mentor "Idol"'s had, after Quentin Tarantino.  Not a super sucky groan-worthy performance in the bunch, and that, my friends, is saying something.  He made most of them, especially Siobhan, "wicked nervous."  But he was cool with that.  Way to bring it, Ush-man.  Nicely done. 

Oh, yes.  Lee D. brought it.

The SJG Breakdown:
1. Siobhan, "Through the Fire":  Okay, not great, but she did dial it back and tone it down.  Kara summed it up best when she said, "It should've worked."  But it didn't.  Waaahhh!
2.  Casey, "Hold On, I'm Comin'":  The Hotness reached out to me, personally, for satisfaction and delivered.  He won praise from Randy and Simon, but Ellen and Kara metaphorically shrugged.  Ellen found it "generic."  She's wrong.  Kara wanted "more range."  He showed plenty. 
3.  Big Mike, "Ready for Love":  The huggy bear gave another wonderful performance.  Didn't understand the stool placement (that just sounds wrong doesn't it?), back turned to the judges, but they all loved it. It was touching and sensitive and intimate.  Awwwwwww!
4.  Didi, "What Becomes of the Brokenhearted":  They go home?  She's a real emotional girl and tonight, I predict, may bring on the waterworks.  I think Didi's headed homeward .  As Usher said, "She wears her heart on her sleeve."  She needs to change blouses, methinks.  Too much drama, too much muchess.  I could appreciate the sentiment and the seriousness, but the judges found it flat and drama queen-like.  Kara said, "Overdone, girl.  Who are you?  You've lost your way."  Simon said it was like swimming in jelly; hard to get through.  Ouch!  And Ryan tried to make her reveal the tears behind the song, the loss of her best friend.  Ryan, for shame!!!
5.  Tim, "Sweet Love":  Teflon Tim is the perfect nickname for the Cuteness.  Nothing sticks, not bad reviews, not being in the bottom two.  Cue quasi-literary reference.  The SJG would describe Tim much like Gertrude Stein described her hometown of Oakland, when she discovered all her favorite personal landmarks were gone:  "There's no there, there."  What is there, with Tim, are his twinkly eyes, his earnestness, his ability to laugh in the face of getting slammed by all four judges.  Ellen summed it up best:  "Why?" 
6.  Andrew, "Forever":  What a relief.  Andrew came back strongly with this guitar take.  As Randy said, "It was his best in a long time."  "Amazing," in the words of Ellen.  "One giant leap in the right direction," according to Kara.  Simon found it, "Miles better." But wants him to show more personality.  This didn't sit well with Andrew's mother, who got up on stage and socked Simon in the gut.  Oh wait, no she didn't, but she wanted to, and I don't blame her.
7.  Katie, "Chain of Fools":  Well, okay, it's the best she's been, although I must agree with Randy, who found it "disconnected" and Simon, who called it "cold."  Ellen wanted her to go current.  Kara thought R&B was the right place, as long as she younged it down a bit.  She's safe, that's all I know.
8.  Lee, "Treat Her Like a Lady":  Usher responded strongest to Lee.  He was clearly taken by his talent.  After Crystal, this was the best performance of the night, I thought.  Randy labeled it, "Unbelievable."  Ellen said, "There you go."  Kara, "Amazing!"  Simon said, "This may be the night your life changed."  Quite simply, wowsa.
9.  Crystal, "Midnight Train to Georgia":  Usher got very quiet, listening to the Mamasox rehearse.  "You got a real shot."  Does she ever.  This one gave me chills, it was so good.  I loved her at the piano, the slow build of the vocal, the backup singers.  It was fantastic.  Everyone agreed. She was sensational.  Yet Simon tempered his praise.  He wants her to stay true, not glam up at the piano, an instrument she hasn't played in a while.  Simon's wrong.  It worked astonishingly well. Ha!
10.  Aaron, "Ain't No Sunshine":  He dabbed his country vibe with some soul and it was pretty good, overall.  He was better in rehearsal.  On stage, he needed more energy.  Simon compared him to a cupcake, but let's face it, the young gals will eat it up. 

Bottom two prediction:  Didi and Tim. 

Mamasox!  Giving Me Chills!

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