Idol Dish

All the Dish that's fit to print about American Idol!

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Los Angeles Audition

Apologies for the delay in getting the blog up and posted in it's proper place tonight. Blogger did an upgrade, and due to our VOLUMINOUS posting on last season's Big Brother 7 AllStars, it took 7 hours to complete the switchover from the beta version to this new and improved version of blogger... For the moment, i don't actually see the difference yet, but here we go with the American Idol Los Angeles Audition Blog! Thank you for your patience!!

Ever feel like you're on a road trip that just wont end? Are we there yet? Are we there yet? That's how I felt tonight, so I decided early on not to give any more time ot the people that couldn't sing. Bad enough they wasted my time during their auditions. Bad enough they caused me actual pain that had me squinching up my face...

21 people made it through from day 1. Another 19 made it through from day 2. Count with me here. That's a total of 40. How many did we see? A grand total of 3: Elena Alexander; Brandon Rogers, and repeat offender Brian Miller.

Frankly, due to the peculiar editing choices of the production team, the golden ticket winners were almost a complete wash, but.. as a woman... I have to give a great big AMEN to Brandon Rogers. Yum. Heartthrob with a killer voice & tremendous control. I'm picking him as a front runner. He is the total package.

Next up, San Antonio. Are we there yet?

Courtney Love's Idol?

It's an early frontrunner for the most bizarre story of 2007, but reports circulated on Wednesday morning that rocker/actress Courtney Love may be replacing Paula Abdul on American Idol. Abdul has taken some criticism for her erratic behavior in interviews for the show and Love tells Us magazine that she's being considered as a judge on the show, and the magazine speculates that it may be to replace Abdul with all of her recent headlines.

Love herself has certainly dealt with her share of erratic behavior in her years as Kurt Cobain's wife, the lead singer of Hole, and the star of movies like The People vs. Larry Flynt. She has fought very public battles against addiction, but seems to have cleaned up recently and claims that she's ready for the public stage of American Idol.

Courtney Love tells Us magazine's website that American Idol's executive producer Nigel Lythgoe called her office to inquire if she would sit in for Abdul on the show. "He called. He was wondering if I was interested. I thought it was kind of weird but brilliant."

Courtney Love is currently in Los Angeles working on a solo album and didn't reveal any more details about the job or the call. For the record, she never said she was replacing Abdul and may simply be considered as a guest judge like Jewel in the first episode this season. However, Us magazine claims that they have an unnamed source who tells them that Lythgoe made the call because he was considering hiring Courtney Love to "replace Paula."

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Goldie's Corner

Goldie's graced us with another blog this week. Here's her take on the folks in Bama:

by Goldie Girl
Sweet Home Alabama? Last week in New York, the South was issued a challenge.....will the South be able to hold its own?? We'll have to wait for the top spots to be filled before we know, but I'm sure we won't be.

Dental student, Erica Skye, sang Simon's favorite song and proved that she needs to stick to cleaning teeth! After so many people have butchered this song...why is it still Simon's favorite???? And again...why can't the contestants understand when they don't make it? Can they actually hear??

So far the north is winning!! Can newlywed Katie Bernard bring the magic? Her speaking voice is not promising...but she seems to have the Paris Bennett magic....strange speaking voice, but decent singing voice...if she can get rid of the dramatic in and out effect!

Self proclaimed extreme Idol fan Tatiana McConico is hoping to miss this season of watching Idol as a contestant and is getting her chance to have a little better than a front row seat!

Former cheerleader, Diana Walker was "Saving All of Her Love", but it must have been for cheering!

Birmingham native, Bernard Williams, II wants to be the next of a long line of Idols from his hometown and proved, yet again, that the south still has a shot. (I was a little shocked that Paula did not like him, but Simon did)

Big Big years old....33.....??? (50....that's more like it!!) I would say watch out for the lightning, but I think it already hit....Margaret the head!!

Jamie Lynn Ward (Kellie Pickler least when she talks) brings a very sad story to the Idol audition (again like Kellie) and hopes it may help take her through to the next round. A decent voice and the cutsie attitude may get her through...just like Kellie! If she makes it through, will this girl be this season's "Support the Worst" contestant?

Chris Sly looks like Jack Osborne before weight watchers and Jack Black...??? He sees Christina Aguilera when he looks in the mirror and Simon sees Justin Guarini! (Maybe he has a future as a celebrity double??) Chris hopes to reduce David Hasselhoff to tears and with his version of Seal's "Kiss From A Rose" he gave me chills!!! (He may get to make the Hoff cry after all!!!)

The judges, minus Paula, meet Cousin IT!!'s Victoria Watson (and her mother who melts when she sings) but she fails to "Raise The Judges Up". (Nice Hair---very sweet girl)

Lakia Hill sings about how love can do crazy things, but trust me.....her voice is crazier!! (not a good crazy....scary crazy!!!) She took it well and then we began to see the southern charm come through with each "Thank You" to the judges negative comments.

Mom thinks Nichole Gatzman can sing....the judges disagree. Although....she is better than a few that went through. Did they go through because they were older?

Did Alabama save the best for last? Brandy Patterson thinks they did....but I had flashbacks of another contestant....different season! (She was a little better than him.....not much...a little) Since the wooden floor was bad for her voice, (that's what she said!!) she moved to her carpet and proved Simon right....again! (But he did say for her to call him!!)

See you tomorrow night in the home to American Idol, Los Angeles!! Until then... be safe!!

Sweet Home Alabama

Bo Bice, Ruben and Taylor... Sweet Home, Alabama! And best yet, it's only an hour tonight!! WooHOo. I mean, if they're gonna focus on the rejects and only show a few from the 20 who did make it through from Alabama, then I'm glad they only have the 60 minutes tonight.

Erika Skye - Great moves.. the voice? She sang unchained melody... and Simon said "It was like a never ending torture. You are an absolutely hopeless singer." And on she went with the Dixie Chicks... Oh Dear... She was completely flat and her family is tone deaf - they heard the notes they wanted to hear. Problem was - those weren't the right notes.

Katie Bernard, she of the 2 voices... 3 year old speaking voice and.. a Golden Ticket, with a little help from her hubby and Paula's wanting to stick it to Simon.

Tatiana gotta golden ticket, and a heck of a compliment from Randy - "You may be the best voice we hear in Birmingham."

Rock the Night Away with Bernard, as long as you remember your humble pie.

Big Bird or Tweety... at 50. Hey.. If I can respect the age limit, and I'm just barely over it, you can too, darlin'. And I can sing.

Jamie Lynn Ward - remember the name. You'll be hearing it again and again. Lovely voice. She sang "Reflection," and I believe she'd have made it through without the story about dad and grandma... and dad's self inflicted gun shot wound paralysis.

Chris Sligh entered the room hoping to make David Hasselhoff cry, and broke into the Seal Song "Kiss from a Rose." Paula stood up and applauded, and Simon looked at her like she was nuts. Then, somehow, he made it through to Hollywood. He has a terrific sense of humor, "I looked straight at Paula, and she crumbled in my chubby little hands." LOL!

After this we got a little glimpse into just how polite a city Birmingham seems to be. In the face of Simon's telling them they were horrific, the general response as they left the room was, "Thank you." I believe I saw our myspace friend Jenna in that group as well. Unfortunately, we didn't actually hear any of them sing.

Team Nichole Gatzman gave em Something to Talk About, but unfortunately it was how she wasn't ready, and her voice was too old fashioned. Perhaps that's why I liked it so much. ;)

Brandi Patterson - Like a Virgin - uh.. maybe.. not so much. She blamed the floor for her 1st song. And then launched into a second on the carpet. No real improvement there.

And so it ended.

Next Up.. the last stop in the pre-Hollywood audition round: Pasadena!! Or as they're calling it, Los Angeles! Mmmm.. nothing like pea soup thick smog to help the vocal chords along.

Till tomorrow...

Good Luck, Jenna!

Happy Idol Tuesday!!

Tonight's American Idol Audition will swing us into Birmingham, Alabama... so we have high hopes for a front runner from this bunch... if history proves right.

We'd also like to wish our myspace friend Jenna, Good Luck!! We're all looking forward to seeing you tonight! Here's the bulletin Jenna just sent out:

"Best wishes to all my fellow Birmingham auditioners!!!!!

I'm in a red shirt and black pants [if they show me].

JENNAH #16843"

We'll be here bloggin' ;)

Saturday, January 27, 2007

An Auditioners Tale

EDITOR'S NOTE — Associated Press Writer Solvej Schou has been singing since childhood and performs professionally. Last summer, she auditioned in Pasadena, Calif., for this season's "American Idol" — not as a reporter but as an aspiring contestant along with 10,000 other first-rounders.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — I've been singing since I was 4 and performing in bands since 15. Nothing, however, could prepare me for auditioning for TV's hit competition "American Idol."

It was a chilly morning in August.

I slept through my alarm, set to 3:30 a.m. A friend's call half an hour later woke me out of my nervous sleep. After quickly shimmying into a bright red vintage dress, I rushed over to the Rose Bowl stadium in Pasadena for the Los Angeles area audition (airing on Fox on Jan. 31 at 9 p.m.).

Bleary-eyed and shivering in the pre-dawn darkness, I took a place in line along with 10,000 other aspiring contestants — from teenagers to those like me in their late 20s.

People brought their mothers, fathers, best friends and aunts. One read "Idol" judge Simon Cowell's "I Don't Mean to Be Rude, But..." Some piled on makeup. Others rehearsed their songs — loudly or whispering. Most everyone yelped and screamed at the Fox cameras twirling past.

I came alone (it was too early for everyone I knew) and murmured lyrics under my breath. Friends called to keep me company. My feet started to hurt.

I'm a blues-singing garage rocker at heart, not someone prone to trying out for a commercial endeavor such as "Idol." Yet prodding from friends and family prompted me to give it a chance. Even my bandmates said, "Hey, why not? Go for it."

The song I chose to audition, "Rock Steady" by Aretha Franklin, was a favorite — soulful, sassy. Not as ubiquitous as "Respect," but still bold. I felt committed. I had already been wearing my "Idol" audition wristband for two days.

Once inside the stadium, after hours of waiting for the gates to open and then that mad dash inside, I found my seat, surrounded by a mix of saucy trash-talkers and shy couples.

Mostly, the tension was palpable — somewhere between wide-eyed hope and crushing anonymity. But there was also something else in the air: a joyful love of music. It felt easy to get caught up in that rush, regardless of the odds.

Questions looped through the crowd.

"Are Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul here?"

"No they're not."

"I heard they are!"

It turns out they weren't — by a long shot.

The cool morning air had already turned wickedly hot. Across from where we sat, way on the other side of the stadium, were a dozen tented booths, side by side. Behind that ... exits.

Once we settled in, a jubilant emcee roared us to our feet to sing the L.A. audition's retro theme song — "Daydream Believer" by the Monkees. Well, the chorus of it, at least, over and over.

We waved to the swooping camera, we yelled "I'm the next 'American Idol'!" and we waited.

Row by row, we lined up to audition in front of one of those 12 booths, four participants to a booth.

Sure enough — no Simon, no Randy, no Paula.

By the time I got to that line, I was jittery yet pumped, repeating the feisty intro to "Rock Steady": "Rock steady baby! That's what I feel now. Let's call this song exactly what it is."

An "Idol" staffer ushered me over to a booth along with three others in line. I had noticed earlier that a woman dressed as a homecoming queen (a nod to the chorus of "Daydream Believer") got the coveted golden ticket allowing her to move to the next round. Could she sing? Who knows. Few others followed in her footsteps.

At the judging table in front of us sat two 20-something producers. One was a young woman with sunglasses so large, she could have been napping behind them. The other was a young man with his head propped up in his hands. He said nothing and looked bored.

Suddenly Simon seemed not so rude after all.

Each of us would be given roughly 15 seconds of our chosen song to perform. No questions, no names.

Two of the singers next to me were great, even passionate. Another one, not so much.

Then I stepped forward and sang, belting out the tune with all I had. It's Aretha, after all.

I was louder than the rest, working my vibrato, stretching my arms out. The bored guy perked up a little, but still said nothing. This was the moment I had waited six hours for.

After less than 20 seconds, it was over.

Afterward, the young woman with the sunglasses turned to all of us, thanked us for auditioning, and said we would not be needed for the show. There was no banter between judges. No comments to us about our performances — snarky or otherwise. Not even a little canned applause.

Instead, we were instructed to go, our wristbands were cut, and we walked out of the stadium.

As I turned to leave the booth, the girl who cut my wristband exclaimed, "Rock steady, baby!"

I smiled at her, containing my exhaustion as I went to my car.

Days later, my band Naughty Bird performed at a local club and I felt a deep sense of relief — to sing our own songs in that cramped, dark place, on our own terms, to loud applause.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Are we there yet?

OK... it could just be that I had a really rough day, but Seriously, Are we there yet? Is it just me, or did NY last 10 hours? Did anyone really stand out for me tonight?

First they introduced the legendary Carol Bayer Sager, and I had such high hopes she'd bring an air of class to the NY auditions. Just as soon, it was as if someone said, "Let the freakshow begin," and out came Ian Bernardo - though I seriously doubt he was ever anything but out.
I'd had enough of his mouth long before he began to ...Sing? Did he think for a moment that was singing? Blech. Next.

Next up was Sarah from Ohio, whose parents didn't know about her little trip to NY, and whose voice and tears got her a golden ticket. Lucky for her, she was the first one to cry in the room that day. To be fair, I did enjoy her voice... very much.

Then straight into the drama, drama, drama sequence starring Ashanti Johnson and several more. "Simon, You just don't understand!" Cry him a river. It's not gonna help. I've gotta give credit where it's due - Ashanti hit it. Those impossibly high notes in "Loving You." She hit them perfectly, and instead of congrats for her efforts, she got shown the door.

The best friend duo reminded me of the public personas of Paris and Nikki, until they started singing, separately, and proved they did have value.

... oh jeez... some woman is murdering my absolute favorite song to sing - Lady Marmalade. Make it STOP!!!!!!!

I'm too crabby and disjointed - really rough day, so the ever cheerful Goldie is gonna take over the blogging from here...

For the first time since season 3 we are headed to NEW YORK CITY!!! Home to the Yankees, Broadway, countless celebrities, some of the best food on earth (mmm pizza)....but, could it be the home of the next American Idol??? Only time will tell, but if I was a betting woman....I would bet the search through this great city won't be dull!! Let's get this show on the road!!!

We first saw Superstar Ian Bernardo on "So You Think You Can Dance" where he argued with the British judge, Nigel....and tonight he had the same problem, with Simon----Could this be the modern day version of the Revolutionary War?? It's obvious he doesn't like the British!! He sang a rousing yet terrifying version of "Gloria" and told the judges they could just ask one of his therapists if he was a superstar since they didn't believe that he was!! (I'm with the many does he need? Plus are they really helping??) He says he won't stop until he is a household name....I don't think he will have a problem being a household name....I just think it might be a bad name!!

19 year old Sarah Burgess skipped school and lied to her dad in order to make it to the audition. This sob story proved to have a happy ending! She sailed through to Hollywood and went on prove her unsupportive dad wrong and make him proud. (Maybe Taylor will let her borrow his song from last year's finale) OMW---I'm such a sap!! I'm crying while she tells her dad that she made it and all he said was as long as you are home safe---I hope she makes it to at least the top 24!! She has heart and an ok voice!

Greek girl Fania Tsakalakos wanted to do fellow hometown boy Constantine Maroulis proud----looks like he won't have to share the spotlight any time soon.

Beautiful, Ashanti Johnson is no stranger to the American Idol auditon process since she has made it to Hollywood 2 previous times. She hopes the third time is a charm. But it seems it's just not her night....maybe she'll finally give up and go for the soap opera?? Like Ryan said....these are the days of our Idols! (Does anyone else hear violins?)

Best friends since childhood, Amanda and Antonella sang each other's praises, but could they really sing? The duet they sang proved to show their weaknesses rather than strengths. Vocally trained Amanda sang by herself first and impressed (sort of) the judges enough to get to the next round! Would Antonella be as lucky? ...Yep... Actually, untrained Antonella turned out to be more impressive and celebrated the victory with still best friend Amanda!

Attention craving Clifton Biddle agreed to audition because of his love for singing and reality tv. As he stomped his way through a ZZTop song, I couldn't help but think..maybe he could give "Stomp" a call since singing doesn't seem to be his thing?.... but, wait.... since you have to have rhythm for that....I would say no to showbiz all the way around, unless watching it from home!

Kia Thorton sang "Ain't No Way" by Aretha Franklin...and proved there ain't no way we could go to Hollywood without Kia!

Cutie Patootie, adopted Jenry Bejarano, sang Gerald Lavert and gave me a little bit of a chill----in a good way----and he's through! How cute was his family??

Nakia Claiborne "Little Shirley Cesaer" just made me smile!! Then she started singing....and I wasn't smiling anymore! I was almost as disappointed as her...because I really liked her!

Sarah Goldberg reminded me of scooter girl (remember her?), but without the voice. At least she got to use the tissues she brought with her.....(I wish I had one!) Maybe we could give her one of Ian's therapists....although I think she may be on some sort of medication....that she forgot to take....I would love to take whatever she didn't.....WOW!

Antonio Torres, Jr. sang New Yor, New Yor?....and made Simon a little nastier than normal.....(is it any wonder why he's always in a bad mood??)

Jory Steinberg has hung out with the Queen of England and hopes to hang out with the King of Mean Simon Cowell. After singing Tina Arena's "Chains"....Simon agreed to add her to his friends list!

Militant American Idol Soldier in training, Porcelana Patino, shed 60 pounds and came to the audition with a ripped body and an incredible voice----I love this New Yorker!!! Her boot camp paid off!!

Simon Cowell look-a-like Christopher Henry hoped his looks would carry him through to the next round. After murdering a beloved Kelly Clarkson song with his female-like voice, Simon hoped he would change his look.

Opera trained Rachel Zevita gave the judges a smorgesbord of voices and showed her range...but will she last through the next round?? She thinks she can..and proclaimed the southern states' hold on the American Idol title would come to an end this season. (She could be right....I just don't think she will be the one to do it!!)

Did anyone else spot Hiro from Heroes in the All Night Long montage??? lol I'm sure the judges wish they could bend time and get some of their lives back after that!!

Chris Richardson..sang my favorite song...and wowed Pickles the Parakeet!! He feels Chris could be this season's Elliott Yamin. (He's such an opinionated little bird)

Season 5 alum, Nicholas (I just bowed out, I didn't quit) Pedro sang "Fly Me To The Moon", but would this get him another flight to Hollywood? (Now I remember why I liked him!!) Study the lyrics, Nicky!! You're great!!! It's time to redeem yourself!

Isidora, palm-reader and self proclaimed rocker chic, sounded like she had a breakthrough.... or something.....anyone else need a cigarette?? therapist?? medication?? their palm read?? all of the above?? Right now the future seems really bleak....maybe I'll just let it happen and surprise me!!

See you next week in Birmingham, home to many talented past Idols. Will the judges get lucky again?? I'm sure we'll all tune in to see!!

Top of the Charts

Chris Daughtry took over the number one spot on Billboard's Pop Album chart today, with his self titled album Daughtry. He edged out the Dreamgirls soundtrack by fewer than 130 albums - the slimmest margin ever.

I'd venture to guess this is the first time 2 American Idols have taken the 1 and 2 spot on the pop charts, but I sincerely doubt it will be the last.

Is everyone ready for tonight?? I have high hopes for NYC!

Katherine McPhee Interview

"American Idol" runner-up Katharine McPhee on her debut album, her brush with Scientology and how "Idol" can be like prison.

By David Marchese

She may have been beaten by Taylor Hicks in the finals of last year's "American Idol," but Katharine McPhee has attracted a level of attention that bodes well for her recording career -- which kicks off on Jan. 30 with the release of her oft-delayed debut, "Katharine McPhee." The California native's freshly scrubbed good looks and her sure way with a ballad won her fans on "Idol," but it was her confession that she'd battled with bulimia and speculation about her dabblings in Scientology (and a possible invitation from Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes to sing at their mega-wedding) that kept her in the headlines. In the midst of a whirlwind promotional tour that includes the "Today" show, "The Tonight Show" and even an appearance on the heavily hyped Lonelygirl15 video blog, McPhee, 22, spoke with Salon about her self-image, the chatter around her personal life and why the "American Idol" contestants are like "inmates."

Was it a challenge for you -- as somebody whose background is not really in pop singing -- to come in and make this kind of record?

Well, I don't think that's necessarily all true. I think some of it is true -- I have a lot of background in theater and a lot of background in standards and stuff like that because that's what I grew up listening to as well. But I do have a lot of pop influences; that's what I grew up listening to. I didn't listen to standards; my CD collection wasn't Frank Sinatra singing the American songbook. It was 102.7 Kiss FM with Rick Dees in the morning listening to all the cool Top 40 songs. That's what I grew up listening to. Yeah, I did like Celine Dion, but Celine Dion is not in anymore. There used to be a time when Celine Dion played on 102.7, but the music has changed. Pop music has changed.

You got a fair bit of attention in the media last year for things that had nothing to do with your appearance on "American Idol" or your music. I'm thinking about your struggles with bulimia and that weird Scientology thing that came up. What was it like for you to go from somebody whom no one ever knew about [to having] millions of people know about your health problems?

Yeah, just weird rumors about you that aren't true. That's definitely strange and puts you on edge. And it feels like you have to defend yourself, but you just learn. People are never going to believe everything you say and you've got to just say what you want to say because it's your truth and people will believe you or people won't. You have to learn so quickly on "Idol" how to deal with press.

What has been the most important thing to learn?

Take it in stride. To be gracious is the best way to deal with it.

The bulimia issue -- you were interviewed in People magazine, so obviously you had some input in that coming to light. How does an issue like that end up in public?

Every interview I did after "Idol" was, "So, how many sizes have you lost?" and "How much weight have you lost after you were on 'Idol'?" People are obsessed with that. To be honest, I'm so fricking over it -- I could say the other word but I won't. I'm so over people being obsessed with the way I look. It's like, "You know what? The real reason I'm a healthier body size is because I'm finally healthy." The woman who was interviewing me [for People] was so sweet and it felt like the right time, and again she was asking me how I did it and what diet I used. I didn't do a diet. I went to a treatment center and got healthy and that's really how I became the body size I am now.

Do you feel some sort of responsibility to talk about these things now that you're in the public eye?

Yeah, I do. I'm still a crazy person in my head. I still obsess over the way I look sometimes and don't like what I see. I definitely don't claim to have it all perfect as far as the food issues and stuff. The body image is always what's left over. For me, I just try to keep a positive body image as much as I can. There are definitely days when I'm like, "I need to lose five pounds." But I've also done that my entire life -- except when I was a kid. Ever since my teens I always was like, "I've got to lose five more pounds." And then I do think to myself, Katharine, if you lose five more pounds intentionally, think about all the interviews you've done about being healthy -- how hypocritical I was going to come out looking. So I definitely feel a responsibility.

Has it been more difficult for you now that you've become famous?

No. It's become easier. I don't have an eating disorder anymore. If I still had an eating disorder I don't think I would have made it. I don't think I would have made it to top two on "Idol." I really don't. I think it would have destroyed me.

Why do you think that people were so interested in the idea that you may or may not have dabbled in Scientology?

Because Tom and Katie were so big at that time and there was so much controversy about it.

Are they friends of yours?

No. I actually just did meet them the other day and they were the nicest people I think I've probably ever met. I'm not a Scientologist. I've clarified this rumor over and over again, but people will keep saying that I am, but whatever. I took a couple of courses. It was really all about a guy. It was a guy that I was totally obsessed with -- not obsessed with but totally into and, you know, guys and girls can do that to our lives and make us think we're into something that we're not. But I don't say that Scientology is a bad thing. I met a lot of wonderful people in Scientology, so when I say I'm not a Scientologist I don't mean it like "I AM NOT A SCIENTOLOGIST!" I actually had a very positive experience in Scientology; I just chose that it wasn't for me.

So the rumor that you sang at Tom and Katie's wedding was false?

Yeah. It was false.

The new season of "American Idol" is starting, so looking at that and at your experience, is there anything you would change about the way the show is run?

I don't know; the formula's working. Was it always enjoyable for the people on the show? No. But ultimately do they care? The show's doing well so why would they change anything?

What did you find challenging?

I think the controlling of it. Us [the contestants] being like we're inmates, not being able to really see our family that much even if we lived in the area.

I think that's something a lot of people don't know. That you guys live in dorms while the show is taping.

Not dorms. We live in a hotel for a month, then we move to apartments. They don't allow family and friends in the hotel rooms. It's a little bit much. Towards the end you have security with you 24 hours [a day]. I don't honestly really believe that someone is going to get attacked. It's not like we're Tom and Katie, you know? That's different. I think they hype that a little bit.

Is it true you snuck out at one point?

Yeah. I loved it. It was fun. It definitely was fun. It reminded you of being in high school or college again -- being bad. It was really easy to sneak out.

A lot of the pictures I've seen of you lately are a lot racier than you were on the show.

It grabs your attention. It definitely doesn't mean that I walk down the street in thigh-high boots and a short dress. It's an image. It goes back to the music. When you're on "Idol" you don't think that what kind of outfit you're wearing is going to affect the image of your record. But it goes with the music.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Goldie's Take on Memphis

Although my name, Carolyn, appears at the bottom of this post, it is actually written by our dear friend Goldie... Here's her take on the Memphis round...

My best friend gave birth to my baby nephew today and the whole time she was in labor all we could think of was.....Can we get little Matthew here in time to recover before American Idol starts?? After 5 seasons and 2 weeks into season 6, you would think the baby would take the lead role in our lives...(and he did), but we have to start his little life off the right way and introduce him to the family's favorite show...after all he could be a future American Idol!!!

The new grandpa feels that Memphis is home of the next idol ....maybe we'll know in just a few minutes!!

Even though he isn't the worst singer ever, I hear Randy, Paula and Simon give "Franks and Beans" the news that he isn't through to Hollywood, I can't help but wonder if Matthew will be a fan or not based on the first audition. At least Frank Byers, Jr. was a gracious loser and gave us a beautiful smile and kind attitude after being disappointed....not a bad start to the evening. least for us...Simon seems to be having a bad day....Oh, wait...isn't that a normal day for him??

Lost in translation.....Timika Sims attempts to sing several songs to impress the judges. Don't feel bad, Simon....I couldn't understand a word she said or sung either. I think Carolyn said it best....."My ears are bleeding!!"

Chris Rivera just scared me and Alexis Partee was a... parteepooper. Did the schools where the last 3 contestants go teach enuncuation???

I was blue until Jason "Sundance" Head sang the blues. WOW!!! Love him! (Grandpa may be right about Memphis after all)

Wandera Hitchye did not take the news that she was not going through to Hollywood very well. Nice voice, nothing special. In all fairness, I liked her better than some contestants that have made it through in the past.

So far Elvis' "Don't Be Cruel" takes on a new meaning for me....and that wasn't directed to the judges!!

Travis McKinney sings a song from the heart about his girlfriend for the judges...if baby Matthew is awake and can see this, he'll be in therapy for several years to come!

Danielle McCullough sings Aretha Franklin and gets a nod from Simon and Paula, but not Randy.....will she be gone the first day like Randy said???

Day 2 dawns with a new hope for Paula fan, Christopher "Topher" McCain, whose wife recently left him. (Another sad story we hope turns out well...fingers crossed). Will he be able to sing Toby Keith's "How Do You Like Me Now" after this is over? Nope....He "Footloosed" his way out the door, but not before he made Simon's day by say "sweet ;)" things about his wife on tv. Don't worry,'re still more famous than your ex!!!

Innocent, clean, well put together, conservative and very sexy (her words) Janita Burks sang "Disco Inferno", but burned a different impression in the judges mind!! I'm sure the almost wardrobe malfunction led to Simon's opinion that she was a handful!!

Fidel Castro can sing!!! Wait, Sean Michel,....I'm confused!!! But he's through.....Viva American Idol Revolution! (I didn't see the talent...but maybe later for me...or were the judges scared not to put him through?)

A very nervous background vocalist, Melinda Doolittle, exploded to the front of the pack with a powerful audition and showed she should not be shoved to the back anymore. I agree with Simon.....BRILLIANT!!!!! My new fave. (I hope my nephew is watching)

Self proclaimed Elvis sound-alike (or did he say move-alike??) Robert Lee Holmes, sings, dances, acts and he writes stories...that end in a period....(his words) sang an Elvis song. Thank goodness his audition did not end with "Welcome to Hollywood"!!!!

During the bad singer montage that we are so accustomed to, one contestant said she had forgotten her medication....I think I may have forgotten mine as least I need some now! Is there a doctor in the house??? I somehow don't think Elvis would ever sing "Burning Love" again if he were still alive!!!

New daddy, Philip Stacy, missed the birth of his second baby girl to audition. At the last minute, he chose to swith his first Marvin Gaye choice to Stevie Wonder (probably to his wife's relief) and was able to take the good news back that he was through to Hollywood! And how sweet was it that AI showed us the baby???

Speaking of babies....I'm back to the hospital to spoil my new nephew!! I'll be back tomorrow night for the always thrilling New York!!

Until then......

Memphis Recap

Well boys and girls, Memphis delivered one heck of a little singer in Melinda Doolittle. What a surprising treat. What pipes! She's like an ivory soap girl - great skin and beautiful features... I hope her self-confidence builds with each new week in the competition.

Next to her, I felt like it was weird beard night... the furry guy had that sorta amish thing going, but he got VERY high praise from Simon after he left the room.. something to the effect of having blown Taylor outta the water. Hmph. He was very good... but I wouldn't go that far. Then there was the Jesus/Castro dude... hellova voice there too, but I had to close my eyes to appreciate it, cuz the look was just so odd. I like both of 'em, but I'd like to introduce them both to the wonders of Gillette.

I found myself disagreeing with 2 of the judges choices tonight: I would have put cheerleader guy through to hollywood, and worked with him to suck out the schmaltz... and although he was very sweet, new daddy (of 3) would have gotten the boot from me - tooooo nasal.

Also, I definitely could have done without the all too predictable bad singer Elvis montage.

More to come...

Idol Week 2

I'm very psyched for tonight and tomorrow. :) Wonder what Memphis and New York have in store for us. Being the center of country music and THE major metropolis of the country, respectively, they've gotta be better than last week! Still, reason dictates we'll be offered a large helping of the tonally challenged.

Either way, we'll be there! And we'd love to hear your thoughts too!

Monday, January 22, 2007

Special Olympics Approves

For The Last Word on this subject, I defer to the Special Olympics Committee... If they're cool with it, then it's all good. ;)

Special Olympics: No Beef With 'Idol'

By Lisa de Moraes
Monday, January 22, 2007; Page C07

Special Olymics International says "American Idol" should be commended for giving one of their former athletes the opportunity to be seen last week on national TV getting the Simon Cowell treatment.

"While polite isn't a word one would normally associate with Cowell and company, a viewing of the episode in question shows that the judges were in fact gracious and very encouraging to [Jonathan] Jayne during his rendition of 'God Bless America,' " the organization said in a statement, noting that "at one point, [judge Paula] Abdul commented admiringly about Jayne's spirit and advised him to 'always believe in yourself.' "

This year, as in the past, early episodes of "American Idol" feature mostly lousy auditions and the snarky reactions to these "Idol" wannabes by judges Randy Jackson, Abdul and, mostly, Cowell.

Fox and "Idol" producers and judges got a thumping late last week on TV talk shows and in newspaper articles for including the tryouts of the 21-year-old Jayne and another 20-something wannabe, Kenneth Briggs, with whom Jayne became friendly. "The View" led the charge, with Rosie O'Donnell and Elisabeth Hasselbeck calling it an "all-time low" for the singing competition -- both episodes of which drew around 37 million viewers last week.

Those who condemned the inclusion of Jayne in Wednesday's episode are preaching against the Special Olympics' message. "Whether on the stage of 'American Idol' or on the field of competition for Special Olympics, people with intellectual disabilities don't want pity or special treatment," the group's statement read. "They want to be judged for who they are and appreciated for what they can achieve.

" 'American Idol' should be commended for providing Jayne with the same opportunity to succeed as any other contestant."

Cowell had already taken issue with criticism of the decision to air Jayne's audition.

"To suggest that because somebody has done something like [participate in the Special Olympics] they shouldn't be allowed to enter the competition smacks to me of censorship, to be honest with you," Cowell told TV critics over the weekend at Winter TV Press Tour 2007.

"I don't think that we should be censors on the type of people. And what we're trying to be, I think, on the show, more than anything else, is representative. A lot of the bad singers you are seeing -- trust me -- there are thousands that didn't make it through. And I think if you asked any of those thousands who didn't make it through, every one of them would say, 'I wish I had the chance.' "

Meanwhile, Jayne called the experience "absolutely wonderful" in an interview with the Seattle Times, explaining that he did it because he hopes to eventually land a job as a DJ or talk show host.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

America's Sweethearts

The Odd Couple, circa 2007. Jonathan James and Kenneth Briggs met whilst waiting in the rain to audition for American Idol 6. To be frank, their voices were not up to par, but the lashing Kenneth took - being compared to a monkey - bush baby -by Simon, is gaining him sympathy and extending his 15 minutes of fame into a guest appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, as well as mentions on various talk shows like The View. Kimmel even invited the duo to the Bob Hope Classic Celebrity Golf Tournament in Palm Springs to interview celebrities for him, so we will be seeing more of them.

In re-watching the video, I have to agree that the personal attacks on Kenneth were rather excessive, but I was actually impressed by the humanity the judges displayed towards Jonathan. They were suddenly on their best behavior, even Simon, and rightfully so.

Please take a look at this clip of Jonathan's audition, and tell me if you agree or disagree. Also particularly sweet was the way Kenneth was outside, fingers and elbows crossed. rooting for his new friend, after having just been dealt with so harshly himself... harsher than he knew at that point. Kenneth, you are a class act.

Got a better ear than Simon? Click here to listen & judge!

Fox Chief Doesn't See Cruelty

(01-20) 13:01 PST Pasadena, Calif. (AP) --

The Fox television network chief on Saturday dismissed talk of unusual cruelty by the judges on "American Idol" this year, saying he's heard from people who think the show has been toned down.

"I think it's part of what makes `American Idol' `American Idol,'" Peter Liguori, Fox entertainment president, told television writers.

The talent show returned with a storm this past week, with episodes on Tuesday and Wednesday attracting around 37 million viewers. The episodes featured auditions by the good, the bad and the awful from Minneapolis and Seattle.

Simon Cowell, whose reputation for blunt, nasty put-downs was established at the series' beginning, was in peak form, telling one contestant that his singing was horrendous and he looked like a "bush baby."

Another judge, Randy Jackson, told one contestant his audition was awful and perhaps ruined his business.

"You shouldn't be a vocal teacher," Jackson said. "I wouldn't take vocal lessons from you, I wouldn't tell anybody to take vocal lessons from you."

On ABC's "The View" this past week, Rosie O'Donnell lashed out at the way contestants were treated by "three millionaires, one probably intoxicated."

"If you keep serving people crap and telling them it's a meal, they're eventually going to think it is a meal," O'Donnell said.

Fox's Liguori said the judges know what makes "Idol" and that this is just the continuation of a successful formula.

"Let's face it, the show has been on the air six years, the judges have been critical for six years," he said.

The judges' harsh assessments also were defended by Geffen Records chairman Ron Fair, who is about to take on a Cowell-like role on an upcoming talent show for the CW network, "Pussycat Dolls Present: The Search for the Next Doll."

"In order to have a reputation and continue in a healthy manner in this business, you have to tell people `no' all day long," he said. "I'm telling people 'I'm not going to sign you, that song is not a hit' ... And there's no gracious or wonderful way to tell somebody, whose hopes and dreams are on the line: `no.'"

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Diana Ross=Diva Mentor

Soul queen Diana Ross has confirmed her plans to appear on TV talent search American Idol as a “diva-mentor”.

The Baby Love star, 62, is super-busy but she insisted on making time to guide young hopefuls on the show.

“I'm going to do American Idol,” she says. “I'm going to be a diva-mentor and I'm going to mentor some of the young people, then I'm going to tour right after - March, April, I'll be on the road again."

The pop veteran's schedule is hotting up as she prepares to promote her latest album of smoochy ballads, entitled I Love You.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

5 Quick Points

1. Has modern dentistry not made it to the Pacific Northwest?
2. Just because you say, "I'm not being rude, but..." doesn't mean you're not being rude.
3. I LOVE Blake's Dad. Blake the Beat Box kid... His ultra supportive dad had me shedding a tear.
4. Hooray for Bollywood! The Malakar siblings were lovely.. and talented.
5. OMG.. Jordan Sparks!! the super cute 16 year old whose dad played basketball... whatta voice. She's a natural. If she can keep it together, I'm predicting her for final 12.

And now... Goldie's take on the night... ;) (She's spoiling me!)

Here we go with night 2!!!

Pickles (my parakeet) is taking turns, hiding, spitting and cussing!!! (We are only on the first audition) Aside from the absolute hideous "talent" (and I use that word loosely) .... can we say plastic surgery gone wrong????? .....somehow I think the "Hotness" scared the hot out of hell! WOW!!!!!

Is it just me or do you think the judges lock the one door on purpose so after the contestants are completely humiliated, running to the door in tears, they slam into it full force and fall over backwards??? I suppose it could be the judges way of getting back at the contestants for putting them through the endless .....torture is the only word that comes to mind.

Amy Salgado....Amy, Amy, Amy....why do I always want these people who seem so sincere and have such a sweet disposition with the heartbreaking story about their children, spouse, mom, sound good??? Somhow I've learned that when they say "Music is my life" with tears in their eyes, it's more than likely gonna be a rough ride. Stick with the radio, honey!!!

Dontcha wish you were as hot as Misha?? How 'bout Momma Misha?? Hello Pussycat!! (somehow the pussycats of the world are hissing with raised backhair in my mind)

Do you really think these people are sincere?? If music is their life, do they realize they don't sound like the music they are playing???? I have to say..I'm a little sadistic..I love the laugh, but some of it is just painful.

I'm beginning to think they need to revive the Swan and take it to Seattle! I've never seen so many strange looking people in one place before....and I've travelled a lot (plus I live close to New Orleans.....eek!) Some of the contestants actually looked like they were in a costume and they weren't!

Thomas Daniels....was he really that good or was everyone else really, really bad??? I vote...both!! He had a nice soothing voice, but unless he comes up with something else.....not a contender! But we'll see after Hollywood Hell Week! Some of the best lose it there.

(I'm beginning to see why Paula may possibly be on medication--either that or she's created multiple personalities to help her cope with the trauma of the audition process) Although I liked net girl's personality, I have to agree with Simon...What was she wearing??

Beat-boxing, Ryan Seacrest look-a-like, Blake Lewis with a 'tude!! Ok voice...but Seal should never be sung with a Michael Buble/Frank Sinatra vibe (of course that is just my opinion)-not a bad voice but confused as to what style be may be most suited for. I loved his Dad more than him...can Dad come to Hollywood, too??

I loved Shymali Malakar...not great, but sweet and potentially...really, really good. The same with the brother Sanjaya....although both were nervous and not really confident in their ability...could this be age??? Hard to say since so many "youngsters" have blown that theory out of the water in past seasons!

Self-taught musician...what about that phrase scares me??? Oh yeah....Nicholas Zitzman....I think that's enough on that subject! (I think I saw Paula leave her body during this audition....Simon and Randy joined her and my baby bird just ripped out a feather) At least he used the correct door! So why do I wish he hadn't?

Did anyone else see Rudy Cardenas sailing through with Paula and especially Randy after he announced his song choice??? (It just wouldn't be AI without Randy mentioning playing the bass with Journey, would it??) Back to Rudy..Cute dimple---nice voice, just ok for me..not great, but this is Seattle....what else have they given us? I could possibly have made it in Seattle!

Kenneth Briggs and Jonathan Jayne..AI6's BFF' I see David Hasselhoff surprising them at the finale this year??? Are there any boy bands that need a choreographer??? I think if singing doesn't work out for Kenneth, Wade Robson needs to watch his back!!! And Jonathan....God Bless America....with an extra special blessing for Seattle!!! Please!!!!

Taylor Hick's long lost twin brother, minus the talent, Hairstylist Eric Chapman not only scared Simon, he scared me, too! Something about a scissor wielding crazy man that goes in a trance to picture the whole head of hair as he cuts....

6'7" with heels Anna demanded "Respect" and got it, but not from Simon (big surprise)....

Jordan Sparks!!! Seriously...she totally sparks!! I loved her! Too cute...did she remind anyone else of America Ferrera? The not so Ugly Betty! My favorite so far!!!! Unbelievable control!!! LOVE HER!!!!!! (The 16 year olds are my favorite so far this year)

I have a feeling after tonight I may cry or just curl up into a fetal position and suck my thumb when I hear the Pussycat Dolls sing "Dontcha"....which used to be a favorite, because it was it's just....well terrifying!!

Steven "Red" Thoen...I swear, if you close your eyes, you would never know it wasn't Freddy Mercury!!! EERIE!!! I love it when Coach Simon is "not being rude"!!

Sorry, girls!! There was so much to critique tonight that I just couldn't stop!!! I can't wait until next week for the fun to continue! TTFN!!

Frenchie Clip

What happens when tremendously talented and extremely well loved American Idol contestants get the boot? In Frenchie's case, I remember a letter writing & calling Fox execs campaign, which unfortunately didn't get her back on the show, but it did succeed in getting her more publicity, which in this business, is never a bad thing.

What a voice that woman had.. and has. Quite possibly the best ever in Idol history, period.

Don't believe me? Don't remember? Check out this clip from The View, and then please tell me I'm not the only sap sitting here in tears.

Taylor's Audition Video

As we wait for the 2nd night of the grand opening of Idol season, let's take a look back at last year's winner. This clip of Taylor Hicks' audition made me smile just as much this time as it did when I first saw him and thought, there's MY American Idol. From day one, from the moment he started singing, I always thought he was the best, but I really didn't think the rest of America would agree with me. The night Taylor won restored my faith... Love him, Love him, Love him!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Goldie's Corner

Every now and then, one of our readers says it so much better than me, and I just gotta share! Here's Goldie's take on the night:

OMW!!!!!!! I haven't laughed this hard in a very long time....I think last year's auditions!! lol Poor delusional little people!! Some of them really have to be just wanting air time!! (I's so sad to go through life that much in the dark!! At least most of them have their parents with them so they shouldn't be afraid)

All of the 16 year olds were killing me!!!! Crack baby Denise (whom I loved) and Matt (my mommie's proud of me).....break my heart!!!!

I so wanted Dayna, (flown to Minneapolis by her boss) to be good......poor girl! Nice boss...where can I get one??

I loved the army wife/soldier...too cute. I think she was a little nervous and didn't do as well as she could, loved the smoky quality of her voice!----but WOW!!!! How about Sarah Krueger??? Could she be this year's Katharine McPhee?? She did a great job with Kat's version of "Over the Rainbow"....I'm keeping my fingers crossed! Loved, Loved, Loved her!!!

Oh how I would love to travel to all of the auditions and sit in and watch....I think I would pee myself! How great would that job be???

After tonight, I'm almost mad at Prince for existing....he's probably a little upset about writing "Kiss" himself.

I wanted to clear the rocker boys throat for him...little Josh looked to be close to an anurism with all of the straining. How mad is ABBA now?? Barry Manilow??? Please listen to Jewel, Josh! He did seem nice, though.

Can't wait until tomorrow night....I heard Seattle was the worst talent so far and the few they found were really good.....I'm sure it will be fun!!

Talk to you later!! Love ya!

Oh Dear Lord

Pain. Cruel and Unusual Punishment. Oh Dear Lord, Make it stop!!

With very few exceptions, that was the first night of American Idol #6. And tomorrow night in Seattle is supposed to be even worse, according to the previews.

This is why I usually don't watch the first couple weeks of Idol. But since we started the blog, I feel duty bound.

A couple of interesting things did happen tonight. More than a couple. First off, forgive me I can recall her name, the 16 year old "crack baby." Based simply on her background story, I was rooting for her, and I was really pleased she made it through. Next, the 2 military contestants. I wonder, now 5 years and a couple months since 9-11, if they'll have the same support base as Josh had. Lastly, being from South Florida, the Colombian girl was a kick for me... where I live, she IS the typical girl next door, so I'm rooting for her too.

Honestly, at the moment, I'm just feeling a bit tortured by the process. I wish they focused a bit more on the positives and saved the particularly awful for quick montages.

And you?

Blast from the Past

In preparation for the big event tonight, I'm looking around youtube to see what goodies I can find. I think you're gonna get a kick outta these. First up is Kelly's Audition:

Next we have Justin Guarini's first time in front of SRP (Simon, Randy, Paula). It's worth watching till the end to hear their comments after he's left the room.

And last but not least, a raucous season one group performance of "Joy to the World." Joy to the PEOPLE in the deep blue sea???

Your Opinion, Please

Do you enjoy the first nights of American Idol? The worst of the worst? The folks that end up in front of the judges exclusively to be ripped apart?

In truth, there are quite a few levels of auditions to go through before any contestant makes it to the esteemed trio of Simon, Randy and Paula, so the William Hungs are a select group chosen because they are so awful that they make "great tv." The question is, do you agree? Do they make great tv, or would you prefer to really get the competition going right away?

Please let us know your thoughts in the comments section here in the blog. All comments must be approved, so when you don't see your comment immediately pop up, there's no need to leave it again - we just have the moderate comments option turned on because of all the comment spammers out there who would love to send you to the porn/viagra/nonsense site of their choice.

An AI First

I half feel like I should title this post, "In your face, Simon," but somehow that doesn't seem sporting, and it takes focus from Jennifer Hudson, who should get all the credit in this. Still... ahem... In your face, Simon.

I do believe this is an Idol first: Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actress in a Musical or Comedy. And something tells me Simon et al will begin to take credit for Miss Hudson's success any moment now.

Jennifer Hudson is living, breathing, singing, acting proof that perseverence and believing in yourself can take you where you want to be... even when those "in the know" tell you you haven't got what it takes. In this case, that's straight to the winners circle.

Betcha a dollar the Idol folks will invite her to perform at the finale this year. :)


I just found this footage of Jennifer Hudson's elimination night, and I have to eat my words about Simon. It wasn't his fault. It was ours.

Monday, January 15, 2007


Welcome to the brand new blog! As with bb7dish, we'll be dishing on our faves and not-so-faves in the upcoming season of American Idol. It's gonna be a fun ride, and we're so glad you've come to join us!!

Who will be the next sensation? Who will make Simon cringe? Who will be so awful even Paula can't bear it? How many Yo Dawg's will Randy utter? Will we see more footage of that poor little freaky boy who almost wet himself onstage during the finale last season when Clay appeared? Speaking of finales.... will Kelly Clarkson appear on this one? Or unlike Prince (and Beyonce, if memory serves), is she just too good for idol now? Hmph. Ridiculous.

To get things started off right, here's the first of our thank you gifts... I went looking for a cool music related freebie this morning, and this is what I came up with:

Get 25 FREE Music Downloads for your iPod® or any MP3 player! It's a 2 week free trial dealie with no strings attached, so go and enjoy! :)

I hope you love it!

Premier Post

Hard to believe, but a new season of American Idol starts up tomorrow! Almost... For me, the season doesn't really start till they get down to the final 12, or at the very least, the final 25 or so. And that ought to be in a couple weeks...

If season 6 follows the model, the first 2 weeks of American Idol are rather a bit torturous, literally. See, I am cursed/blessed with perfect pitch, so to my ear, all the "bad" singers are actually painful - something akin to nails on a chalkboard.

Then there's the cheap, milk it, stretch it out as long as possible, and churn up those advertising dollars aspect of it.... which is all the first 2 weeks are really about.

Still and all, a new season is about to get underway. I wish the winning contestants the success of Kelly Clarkson, Clay Aiken, Carrie Underwood and Taylor Hicks, and the "losers" the strength of character to carry on and succeed in the fashion of Jennifer Hudson - wow! If you don't know what she's been up to lately, just google her... and be impressed.