Tuesday, May 15, 2007

crunch time...


There are three left which will turn to two tomorrow and then, in exactly seven days, this most unmemorable of seasons will be, mercifully, put to rest.

But first, as Ryan says, they gotta fight for their place in that finale.

It's the traditional three-songs-chosen-by-three-paries-for-three-singers format, despite a missing in action Clive Davis. Alas. No Journey songs for R&B singers this season, just a lot of salutes to prostitutes.

The judges choose one song, the "producers" are choosing one, and the kids get a free pass to choose one of their own.

So here they are, the early impressions and, as usual, from worst to first.

Blake Lewis (Personal choice, When I Get You Alone). I don't know if I don't like this song or if I don't like Blake's interpretation, but I do know that I don't like it. Randy gives him the meh review, and Simon gives him kudos for taking risks.

Blake Lewis (Paula's choice, Roxanne). Leave it to Paula to choose a prostitution song. But whatever. Blake follows Jordin, and as a result, pales in comparison. Simon calls it a cheap imitation of Sting, and he's right, although not as poorly-performed as some of Blake's numbers over the season, it wasn't at the level I've seen from him either.

Jordin Sparks (Producers' choice, She Works Hard for the Money). Oh good. Another prostitution song. Since they didn't put the kids through a pure disco night, the producers make up for it with this Donna Summer classic, that Jordin essentially sleepwalks through until the end. Not her best effort.

Blake Lewis (Producers' choice, This Love). Blake gets Maroon 5, and a song he can insert a little beatboxing into. It's far better than his first effort, but still a bit bland, but at this point I'm not sure if it's Blake, the song, or just my taste.

Melinda Doolittle (Randy's choice, I Believe in You and Me). Leave it to Randy to choose a Whitney song after preaching for six seasons not to sing Whitney. And then he chooses a crappy Whitney song. But whatever. It seems to take for freakin' ever for Melinda to get to the belty parts, and, until she does, she seems a little off, but, once she does, she's Melinda in the purest sense of the word. The judges are unanimous in their praise, and Simon gives Melinda a first-round win. I, however, give it to Jordin by a hair.

Jordin Sparks (Simon's choice, Wishing on a Star). Leave it to Simon to choose a song few people have ever heard of, much less heard. Jordin gets to kick off the night, in the cursed first spot, and sings one of the most obscure judges song choices since Mr. Melody. She looks quite pretty and rescues this boring number. Simon disses the arrangement, claiming he likes the "pure" version better. I've heard the "pure" version. Jordin got lucky.

Jordin Sparks (Personal choice, I Who Have Nothing). Jordin pretty much recreates her performance frpm British Invasion Week. It was a good performance then; it's a good performance now. Of course, Simon again has to question the age of the song, criticizing the 17-year-old Jordin for singing a sixty-year-old song, even though he and the producers handed her songs from over 30 years ago. But whatever. Jordin's 17???

Melinda Doolittle (Personal choice, I'm a Woman). Melinda brings back this number that she performed earlier in the season, but unlike Jordin who pretty much equaled her earlier performance, Melinda brings even more sass to this one than she did earlier, giving Simon cause to tell her she's the only one who automatically deserves to advance.

Melinda Doolittle (Producers' choice, Nutbush City Limits). After comparing Melinda to Tina Turner, the producers hand her this one, even though I would have preferred River Deep Mountain High. Whatever. Melinda is simply FAB with this performance. Simon says round two is a tie. I say Simon is full of it. It's a Melinda slam dunk.

Time to predict.

Bottom three: Melinda, Blake, Jordin.
Top two: Melinda and Jordin.

So...what's your verdict?


Labels: , , ,

59 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can Blake go home now? Please?

9:10 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree, Blake isn't in the same league as the two women. I have no idea how he got this far... I can't imagine anyone buying an album he would put out.

9:14 PM, May 15, 2007  
Blogger Kristi Mantoni said...

I want Blake to leave but I don't think any one who performed first on top three night has made it to the next week. I could be wrong. Jennifer? Do you know??

9:24 PM, May 15, 2007  
Blogger jennifer said...

Every person who has led off F3 night has finished in third. I think that is going to change this year.

9:26 PM, May 15, 2007  
Blogger Laura said...

This season is just so weird. On top 3 night in every other season, I have had a good idea of the remaining pecking order. Last year, once Chris was taken out of the equation, everyone knew Taylor would take the crown. I think Carrie was the obvious choice in Season 4. Fantasia was far superior to the likes of Jasmine Trias in season 3. Etc. This season, I honestly have no idea! It's crazy! I mean, I wouldn't be surprised at any combination of the three at the Kodak next week. (Though I can tell you that I don't think Blake will do too hot with the backup gospel choir.)

9:31 PM, May 15, 2007  
Blogger jennifer said...

Watching Blake singing a coronation song with the choir would almost be reason enough for me to vote for him. ROFL

9:33 PM, May 15, 2007  
Blogger Kristi Mantoni said...

Me too! I would LOVE it if he beat-boxed in the middle as well!!

9:48 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kind of make you wonder whats going on with some of the songs they gave them to sing.

I think Simon was tring to get rid of Jordin with "Wishing on a Star". She did good in spite of him, but it was a crappy song.

Dori

10:08 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really like Blake and would like to see him advance to the finals. I think that Melinda can get a record contract since she's in the business.

10:13 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I find it really annoying that Blake constantly gets credit from the judges for "taking risks", when he is definitely not taking risks. A risk for him would be a Whitney Houston song. He sings songs which are right up his alley. And not all that well, really. I really like most of the songs that he's sung, but not his singing of them.

10:19 PM, May 15, 2007  
Blogger m.alexandra said...

i understand what many of you are saying about blake: vocally singing alone-incomparable to the ladies. but i think a lot of people are voting for his performances and for him being something new. as out-of-this-world-flawless as melinda is, we've seen her before in music, not ai. jordin is precious and quite good for 17-or any age really.
but blake brings us new things to the table: he has a very "whole product" mindset and would produce music a la imogen heap style: independently. he would make sure his music sounded new and different as opposed to his colleagues that do and probably will clog up the airwaves with over produced tunes.
does anybody remember how clearly inadequate vocally taylor was next to katherine and elliot? but he was very fun to watch (to the majority).


anonymous up top is probably very close minded as i, along with many others, would only consider buying blake's album. i don't need another diva in the cd rack. do you?

for the record-i think (and hope) that melinda should take the crown!

10:26 PM, May 15, 2007  
Blogger m.alexandra said...

i think they mean taking risks as an american idol contestant.

again-there hasn't been a contestant like him before.
there have been a few to many like jordin and melinda-as great as they are.

can you imagine the beating he would get if he did do whitney houston?!

...silly blogger

10:34 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think they mean taking risks as an american idol contestant.

again-there hasn't been a contestant like him before.
there have been a few to many like jordin and melinda-as great as they are.

can you imagine the beating he would get if he did do whitney houston?!


But he isn't taking risks as an American Idol contestant. He is doing exactly what his fans think he should do and singing songs exactly to where his strengths are. What's the risk? And can I imagine the beating he would get if he did do Whitney Houston? Of course I can--unless, of course, he surprised everyone by doing it well. That's why it would be a risk.

...silly blogger

I may be silly, but at least I actually know what the word "risk" means.

10:54 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Blewis said...

Well, I agree that Blake is taking risks by being different and not straying away from who he is and trying to be the "norm". I believe he is taking a risk by being himself becaused it is different and not what people are used to. I think Gina made that mistake mid-way through by trying to be diva like Jordin & Melinda and by the time she realized it and went back to being herself, it was too late. It was sad to see her go. Like a previous poster said, there have been many we have seen like Jordin & Melinda and we are longing for something different (perhaps why Taylor won over Katherine?). You never know!

11:17 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why would anyone buy an album/cd done by Blake? The guy has only a so-so voice, and frankly, I think he's a boring piece of whitebread, and not even Wonder bread.

You cannot compare him to the 2 ladies, their voices outshine him on their worst days.

Blake has a gimmick, that's about it. And if you're over 21, beat box doesn't do it for you. I find it annoying. He'd be good at commercial voiceovers and sound effects, maybe he can be a foley artist. Im sure he can do great hoofbeats and ride the horse he rode into town with, off into the sunset.

I don't see the first comment to be close minded at all, he doesn't even sing as well as a boy bander.... I would never waste my money on anything with him singing on it. Bleccch

11:19 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ummm.. I'm over 21 and voting like mad for Blake. :)
Just thought I would throw in my two cents. I would LOVE a Melinda/Blake finale!

11:29 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Blewis said...

Awww man. I'm insulted. I would totally buy his album, I'm certainly over 21 and I love beat boxing! He would make a great reggae album or techno mixes or even some great pop songs! I think he did great w/ Maroon 5 tonight. The other stuff honestly just bored me (although I do love Jordin & her voice- just not always her song choices).

11:31 PM, May 15, 2007  
Blogger Chad Oneil said...

I found your blog by searching for blogs about idol.

Here's my thoughts on why this season "started" out to be one of the most "unmemorable of seasons".

It all starts back at the audition phase. I think that there are a lot of people who get turned away by the first wave of judges who are really good singers, but never get to see Simon and co. Think about the people who show up in later seasons who are very talented, but say that they were “turned away” in prior seasons, not even seeing Simon. I think idol producers waste time with all the “intentional Bloopers” that they try to produce for that first unbearable month of the show. As you probably guessed, I don’t really watch that part, it’s a waste of my time.

If they didn’t waste time on putting bad people through “intentionally” just to make the “Blooper Reel” and only put good people through to Randy, Paula and Simon, it would be a totally different competition, a competition of only “great” singers. This recent top 12 is evidence of this. It’s how we got the “Sanjaya Class”, the name I’ve given the first six to go from the top 12. Ok, maybe a few of them were pretty good, like the big haired Chris, but for the most part, the first six were a fair bit weaker. We could have had a “Strong 12”, but it all stems from that first audition phase.

I will say this though, America actaully got it right in crunch time. We’ve enjoyed a strong finish in an otherwise laxidasical season.

This season will have good memories tied to it for me, because of talking about it with all of you and some of my personal friends. It’s been a lot of fun, thanks for making this weaker season memorable and worth watching.

That’s my take on American Idol, Season 6.

...I voted for Jordin tonight, I tapped out at "200".

It became a game for me to see how long I could keep hitting redial.

At first I stopped at 150, then decided to go to 175...but, I couldn't resist only being 25 redials away from 200, so I went the rest of the way.

As long as Jordins in the final, I'm happy.

11:34 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

blewis,

Well, I agree that Blake is taking risks by being different and not straying away from who he is and trying to be the "norm". I believe he is taking a risk by being himself becaused it is different and not what people are used to. I think Gina made that mistake mid-way through by trying to be diva like Jordin & Melinda and by the time she realized it and went back to being herself, it was too late. It was sad to see her go.

This example with Gina is exactly why Blake is *not* taking risks. *Gina* took risks. She went out of her comfort zone. She ultimately paid the price for her risks, because, as a pure singer, she just wasn't good enough. But at least she tried.

Blake, on the other hand, takes no risks. I'll admit that he is certainly *different* than any Idol contestant we've had before. But I'll bet that now that he's shown that there are AI fans out there for his style of music, in the next season or so, we'll have contestants with his style that are actually really good at it, rather than just riding the novelty wave.

11:36 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vocally Blake should be gone, but I think Jordin and Melinda are going to split votes. I think there are people out there who are going to like that Blake is different from the other two. I like that Blake is different but I don't like any of them better than the others, they each offer something. Normally this time of year I have cell and house phone going. I like all three I just don't love any of them. I wonder if other people are feeling that.

Last year I was all about the Chris and Taylor voting. The year before I called for hours for Bo. This year it is just blah. I love to watch and the performances are okay, but I won't be rushing out for tickets or CD's.

julie

11:43 PM, May 15, 2007  
Blogger Sunshine said...

JJ, where are you?? I might need a little backup cos I'm going to say something that most of you Melinda lovers are not going to like.

Doesn't everyone know that Fantasia is a has-been, as is Ruben, as is Taylor..already. MELINDA WILL BE A HAS-BEEN ALSO if she wins. I don't care what anyone says about Blake, he is the most original and personally I think the most original throughout all six seasons. I really do like Jordin, I think she can go places and be just as popular as Kelly Clarkson. Melinda is NOT MARKETABLE! I can't stand it anymore! I will never buy her album and the people who do I'm sure will be disappointed cos she is just boring. I don't care how great her voice is. Watching her hurts my eyes and makes them twitch and listening to her just makes me think of stupid Fantasia.

On a good note...
Jennifer, I've loved your blog since I started reading it 2 years ago (or so). Although, I don't always agree with your "worst to first" picks, I think you're doing a great job. Hopefully, we'll have a better season next year. If Melinda wins, I've given up on the show. But I won't give up on the blog!

(long sigh with still a small hope for a blake/jordin finale)

11:45 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous Blewis said...

Oh really? I don't look at it that way at all. But I respect your opinion. I believe taking on the AI challenge by naturally being different than everybody else and sticking to it is the biggest risk of all. Trying to be something you're not is not something I consider risky- it's just phony.

It's all a matter of our individual opinions and tastes.

11:47 PM, May 15, 2007  
Anonymous tracyintpa said...

Wow, Sunshine, thats some pretty daring commentary. Fantasia is cleaning up on Broadway in a starring role, I don't think she is a has been. I think she is taking another turn with her career and its working out for her. Taylor's career has barely gotten started and he is a has been? His album has sold one million copies and he just wrapped up a tour that was sold out in many of the venues. He just appeared on Leno last night and he was pretty damn good. I think success is measured in a lot of ways. Carrie Underwood is hugely successful and talented but I wouldn't buy her album, but she is undeniably successful. I love Blake, probably wouldn't buy his album, I'd buy Melinda's, but I'm 47 years old and I love her style. I think Jordin should win the whole thing. I think she is very talented, marketable, has great stage presence and I predict will be as big as Kelly Clarkson. But I think the other 2 will have big careers in their chosen genres.

I thought the song choices tonight all the way around were lousy. Donna Summer? Ok, how boring, uncreative, lackluster, and tired are these "producers"? Has this season been so bad that even Clive Davis doesn't want to make an appearance? That doesn't bode well. And Blake should get props for being the only one NOT to rehash a song he has already sung this year. I think Melinda and Jordin copped out and took the easy way out by doing reruns.

12:05 AM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger AlbGlinka said...

Some hot debate here tonight...

There are a lot of people who are VERY into Blake. Go over to Television without Pity and check out his forum thread-- it's twice as long as anyone else's.

I was giving up on him going into tonight, but I have to say he did good. His style is not just beat-boxing. Okay, so he doesn't hit ALL the notes, but at least he's not totally boring like Jordan!!!!!

My vote: A Blake/Melinda finale, and then let the 13-year-old Hello Kitty fans decide.

Just My Humble Opinion. :-)

1:33 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

(forewarning: seems I was a bit more bored than I expected, and wrote this while watching "I've got Mail", so it seems to be a bit longer than normal. but what the heck, it's not like any of us have anything else to do. hahaha)

Hey Sunshine, sorry, I wasn't able to watch tonight, it's my 14th anniversary, so I was at dinner, then when we got home, we decided to watch last night and tonight's Dancing to see if Apollo survived to the finale next week (yeah he did!!).

I did catch some of the song wrap ups, but it was so hectic, I didn't get to listen :(

But that won't stop me from having some fun. There are some interesting comments tonight, I love interesting comments haha.

Sorry to the Blake haters, but he is the most "pop idol" of the 3. Pop idols are NOT good singers, they are good performers. There's a reason they give nicknames to pop music like "cotton candy" music. Presentation is more important to success than is content. Look at the 80's, how many 1 hit wonders were there? It's ridiculous. It was all about having a hook, whether it be wild hair, outfits, band composition, explosives, scantily clad women in a video, zombies in a video that was 12 minutes long haha. You name it, having a hook was King, not being the best singer.

So anyway, Melinda is a great "singer", and not a half bad performer, but can you truly see her packing a stadium like Bruce, or the Rolling Stones, etc.? na, you see her in a small cozy club environment, where she can emote to the audience. She strikes me as a superb Vegas style singer (though not sure how the neck will go over long term with audiences). In the right outfits, she is reasonably pleasing to watch strut across the stage. I think of famous R&B singers when I think of Melinda, and decent fame and success, but not the over the top success of pop stars, ala Madonna etc.

Jordin, well, she's too young to know yet, but she seems to have unbelievable potential. I agree with comments, I think by Simon, that she might be the next Whitney/Celine type singer. I really like her voice and her exuberance, but honestly, not being a big music fan nowadays, I'd never buy her album (only recent album I've bought was Carrie's, and some old greatest hits stuff for my wife, and some christian praise music). I stopped buying music long ago when it kept getting stolen from work (i was a salesman at Circuit City in the 90's, and lost over 100 cd's in that time, to theft. lousy customers. haha). And I was a musician, or at least a student in days past: trumpet, organ, and violin. So though I'm apparently tone deaf, and can barely sing a note in tune in church, I have an oddly sensitive ear to "out of tune" notes. I'm guessing that came from years of Organ lessons, and rarely practicing, then having to try to play for the teacher during my lesson by speed reading the sheet music so it sounded like I'd practiced, just not enough :) So I was always keen to knowing I'd missed a note, just could never hear music and play it back. Only could sheet read :) So, anyway, Jordin strikes me as someone who will have a huge career, and would be a decent winner of Idol, though she'll likely take a little longer than the norm to reach "star" level.

Blake, he's the oddity. He's not a rocker, so he doesn't immediately loose over half the viewing audience (sorry, but the reality is, less than half the country actually likes rock. there's a reason country is so huge, and don't forget all the R&B styles). So unlike Bo and Chris D., Blake has a pleasant enough voice, that doesn't have the "harsh" sound of a rocker voice, so granny isn't offended. He dresses in a way that is young, but isn't offensive to the older crowd either. He's tasteful in his choices. His stage movements are modern, but again, understated, so as to not alienate that older crowd. That is the key to winning this show. That's a huge reason Taylor won. The older crowd loved him, as did some portions of the younger ones. Blake has the teeny girl vote locked up, though a few may stray to Jordin. But are any likely to stray to Melinda? Unlikely. Blake is also more likely to get the vote of the 20 something who doesn't want to admit he watches the show, but will admit to liking the "cool" person on it. Blake comes across as that person. he's the "hip" one. Melinda would never be considered "hip" in a culture that idolizes the "hip hop" scene. So, this is why I've thought Blake will survive so long. it's not about singing, it's about appearances with him. And when he tweaks the beat box sound into songs correctly (bon jovi week), he's the best overall person left.

As to the comments that Gina was riskier than Blake, you need to define risky better. Risky isn't singing a song exactly the way it was by it's originator, even though you are a rocker. Risky is Chris D never singing a song in a manner other than his rocker manner. It's why he ended up in 4th, but has been the most successful so far from last year. Gina let that group down, and while she'd likely not have made it much further anyway, she wasn't "risky" in her song choices. Melinda has been anything but risky in songs. Jordin has a couple times, and not all came out perfect. Blake has taken more "chances" than the others. You say him being him isn't risky. How is that? Him being him is so "un-idol" and so different than every winner of idol, that by itself, being him is risky. But then, when you consider how much he rearranged some of his choices to make them more modern and upbeat and contemporary, that's what is risky. he crash last week, while blowing the roof off 2 weeks ago. That's being risky. The judges, especially Simon, stress making the choices their own to the contestants, but how often do they? Bo and his accapelo song comes to mind. Taylor did a lot of it. even Chris D did. But it's doing it well that really makes a difference, and while Blake hasn't been perfect, his chances that worked were home runs, where his misses where strikes, not outs in and of themselves.

So, while I gather Blake didn't do well tonight, at least compared to some of his previous performances, he's still different than the other 2. My only reasoning for thinking Blake would make the finals all this time has been that the girls will split votes, and so far that has held up. I like to observe our silly countrymen and women while watching this show, and I'm often amazed at what they do. But there are times when they make complete sense, though it's not obvious upon first glance. Chris D getting booted at 4 seemed odd, but it was a good thing for him, and likely correct. Carrie beating Bo make plenty of sense. the incredibly pretty girl next door versus the long haired bluesy rocker. no contest. It wasn't like Bo would get the votes of the country fans, nor the vote of pretty much any male who wasn't just a complete rocker isolationist :)

If Melinda were better looking, I think she'd be a slam dunk. But I'm just not sure. I really wish we knew voting numbers from previous weeks :) Jordin would seem to be ahead of the others because she would seem to pull from all age ranges and styles more than Mel or Blake, but that doesn't mean it's enough to beat out the groups Mel and Blake dominate. This show would seem like the kind young girls (under 10 to 25 maybe? haha) really get into, where as young boys not so much. As such, Blake likely has a much higher percentage of that age range than the girls, and that range also is a heavy texting group, so Dial Idol can not give an idea of how that group votes. Just looked at DI, and there's only a 2.5% difference between the 3. Blake is lowest, but we know how wildly DI results can be. And I expect Blake and Jordin would dominate texting results, being those are the more likely method the youth uses.

I don't pretend to know who will get cut, but I'm just saying it's logical not to be surprised if Blake does. And while he isn't the pure singer the girls are, his voice is more than adequate for radio star status, and I'd expect videos from him to be much more fun to watch :)

so, please don't be "offended", but really, all 3 of these singers deserves to be in the finals. Though this contest is no where near as close as Dancing with the Stars this year. For those not watching that, the top 4 there scored 58, 59, 60, 60 for this semifinal week, and all were so good, it was literally impossible to guess who wouldn't make it, nor was there anyone you could point to and say, "that one doesn't belong". It was a lot like Idol's final four last year, all were good. Had Elliot been forth, it would have been sad, but Chris would still have been there. Had McPhee gone, some think that might have been better, but she was a very good singer of a certain style, that works well for Idol. The point is, sometimes each contestant is worthy, in their own way, and it's just more fun to watch America than get caught up in "your own" reasons (opinions) why this one or that one should stay and go. So I say, here's to the process and the fun we all get from trying to guess how wacky we'll make the results. From Sanjaya lasting so unbelievably long, to William Hung being famous after one of the worst auditions ever. We are watching us at work here, and we are a funny group, us Americans. Let's enjoy ourselves!! haha

JJ

2:39 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous ChrisROCKS said...

Well, thank goodness! the picks weren't as bad for the singers this year as they were last year. I almost got excited tonight. Here is my list, worst to first:

Blake (When I Get You Alone) - I think I was put off from this performance purely for the fact that this is a Robin Thicke song. The good news is that Blake did a much better job of it than Robin. But that isn't saying much.

Jordin (She Works Hard for the Money) - No 17 year old should be singing this song! Especially one as adorable as Jordin! It was a very pop-princess type performance, and I wasn't impressed.

Blake (Roxanne) - Simon was right: doing this song is going to cause comparisons with the original and anybody is bound to lose out to Sting. Still, I was pleasantly surprised by Blake. It wasn't all bad.

Jordin (Wishing on a Star) - I don't know this song at all. I thought she sounded great, and looked even better. But still, there were better performances to be had this evening. Carry on.

Melinda (I Believe in You and Me) - Yeah, yeah...nobody is supposed to tread on sacred Whitney ground. UNLESS you have the chops to do it. And Melinda does. Too bad she's purely an alto. The song should be sung in a higher key for it to sound right. Still, she did a great job with a song she didn't pick. I love her.

Blake (This Love) - I love the Maroon 5 version and I loved Blakes rendition. Simon said it wasn't a copy of the original. Well, it may not have MEANT to be a copy, but it sounded very much like the original, which is a good thing! Blake is just cool. Definitely his type of music.

Jordin (I Who Have Nothing) - She was fabulous the first time she sang this song, and she was fabulous tonight! The only complaint I have is that she didn't plant herself behind a stationary microphone. This isn't a walking song; it's an emotive song and should be sung entirely in one spot with only face and hands supporting the gut-wrenching feelings of the song.

Melinda (Nutbush) - lol I had to laugh! Of all the Ike and Tina/Joint songs they could've picked for her, they pick this one! Hellooooo, have any of you heard of "Proud Mary"?! It has the requisite energy PLUS the recognition factor for the audience. Even still, I loved her performance of it, especially when she dug in, growled and lifted the bottom end of the mic stand up and off to one side. This gal PERFORMS!

Melinda (Woman) - Loved it the first time around, loved it tonight! She kept the same energy and sauciness but changed up a few things. I especially loved the homage to her backup homegirls. It was as if she was remembering her roots, but saying goodbye to that chapter in her life as she stepped firmly into the very bright spotlight of center stage. This gal is a true pro. :)

Who I want: Blake
Who should: Blake
Who will: Blake

But even if Melinda or Jordin goes, I won't mind. I love all three of them and wish them the same amount of success. I'm mostly looking forward to this season being done with. I HOPE some of TPTB read this blog and the comments so they know what NOT to do next year.

Thanks, Jennifer, for all your great analysis and humor. You've been far more entertaining than the actual show. ;)

2:48 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous ChrisROCKS said...

Oh, for the record, I want Melinda to win this thing. And I think she WILL win. She's been my favorite from her very first audition. But I honestly wouldn't be upset if Jordin or Blake won. But, I do think Jordin is better than Blake, though. It's just that they're all so adorable as people. I like them all!

2:58 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous ChrisROCKS said...

"And if you're over 21, beat box doesn't do it for you."

Ummm.....wrong again! I'm 40 and I happen to like a little beatbox, as well as a little Blake. ;P

3:02 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous ChrisROCKS said...

Okay, okay...this is my last post, I promise!

First, JJ, Happy Anniversary!! And I agree with your analysis. Except about DWTS, but only because I don't watch that show and can't make a fair judgment. ;)

Second, sunshine, whoa! You said, "Melinda is NOT MARKETABLE! I can't stand it anymore! I will never buy her album and the people who do I'm sure will be disappointed cos she is just boring." You're being more than a bit harsh on the girl! If you don't like her, that's your prerogative. But don't assume that your taste in music is the standard by which the rest of us purchase cds and tickets to concerts.

Last year, I can't begin to count the number of times people said that Chris Daughtry was just a one-trick-pony and that he'd never be a commercial success. Well, two million cds sold and counting in barely 1/2 a year should silence his critics forever. I have his cd and let me tell you, it ROCKS! (Literally and figuratively.) I've said it before and I'll say it again: the singer will be successful IF the producers don't pigeonhole them into what they *think* people want to hear. That's why Rueben is not longer known; they made him sing songs that weren't him!

Market singers in the genres THEY want to sing in and they'll excel. Melinda is an old soul; she does standards, Motown and bluesy jazz very well. That's what she loves. If TPTB are smart, they'll make a cd of her doing this kind of music and it will soar!

3:29 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think many of you need to get off your high horses and stop assuming that just because you wouldn't buy a particular Idol's CD, that no one else would. Diversity is what makes the world go round and just because you don't like something doesn't mean other people won't enjoy it. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but everyone may have a different opinion. If you never left room for differing opinions than you wouldn't have very many friends because no two people agree on everything 100%. Just because you may not like movies about comic books doesn't mean that the Spiderman franchise shouldn't have been turned into movies. Entertainment has always varied greatly because people's likes and dislikes vary greatly. It's fine to say you wouldn't buy an artist's album, but it's pretty close minded to say that NOBODY would buy an artist's album.

Caroline
NJ

9:01 AM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger SpoonieLuv said...

I read your blog weekly and I enjoy it a lot, but sometimesI wonder if you are watching the same show as everyone else. Shrek Dolittle's bad Tina Turner impersonation was garbage. And the first half of I'm a Woman was indecipherable. On the other hand, Blake showed with his version of This Love that he had what it takes to be a contemporary singer, as we know Jordan can as well. What will Shrek do? Release album after album of songs recorded before she was born?

10:06 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

spoonieluv....perfect comment!

Wow, no mention of Melinda's fubbed lyrics?

I guess it's okay for her right?

Oh and last time I checked it was a Fouor Tops song covered by Whitney. They only called it a Whitney song to boost her ego and make everyone think she could actually pull it off, which she did not. Worst vocals from her all season on that one, even worse than her f'ed up reprisal.

10:44 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

someone said and I quote:

Last year, I can't begin to count the number of times people said that Chris Daughtry was just a one-trick-pony and that he'd never be a commercial success....

No no, Taylor was a one trick pony, which is why Melinda is def. a shoe-in for the win LMAO! At least Taylor was entertaining, and I didn't like the freak.

10:46 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous tracyintpa said...

What is it about Taylor that prompted you to say he is a one trick pony? I'm just curious.

11:04 AM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger MP said...

I'm 40..I love the Beatboxing and Blake. I don't want Blake to win since I think he'll do much better out from under AI, ala Daughtry.

I think Jordin NEEDS to win and it wouldn't hurt Melinda either.

Melinda is by far the best singer but Blake is really more of an Idol.

Who Should Win based on "American Idol".
Blake;with Melinda going home.

Who Will win based on how American Votes: I have NO flipping clue, I think it's a toss up.

Who I would like to go home: Blake, with Jordin and Melinda in the battle for the winner...but I don't think it's going to happen, plus it would make for a boring finale.

FYI: I saw Bucky on Jimmy Kimmel, I liked him WAY more than when he was on the show.

11:09 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ok, if you all want some fun, go listen to the first 10 minutes of the Tony Kornheiser radio show (he's a Washington Post sports columnist, host of PTI on ESPN, and the new "funny" guy for Monday Night Football). TK loves to do an Idol recap every week, and I almost fainted after hearing today's comments (note: no one on his show has liked Blake at any point this year). http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/wtwpradio/listen.html

Chrisrocks, not sure people were saying Chris D wouldn't sell any albums, just they'd be only of a rocker band style. And that has proven out very well for him :)

Caroline, as far as Melinda goes, it's not a literal "won't be able to sell albums". It's an, in comparison to a typical pop star, in comparison to Kelly and Carrie and Daughtry, she'll be a bomb as far as sales go. She'll definitely have a market after this, just like Kiki will, but it won't ever be a record setting, chart topping market. And Jordin, we just can't tell if she'll actually grow into a chart queen. I think she will be able to, but she'll need some seasoning.

Since this is a singing blog, for those like CR who've missed DWTS, you've been missing the incredibly entertaining Joey Fatone of Nsync. Apollo Anton Ohno has been the best 'dancer', but Joey has been amazing in his 'flare and flash'. You should check out some of the clips of his dances, especially the one a few weeks back when he danced to the Star Wars theme, and Monday night's 2nd dance (yellow jacket, great performance). Very very entertaining

JJ

11:28 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW...lots of different opinions on here for the final. For what it's worth, here's what I think. For the first time, I couldn't vote because all three are awesome. I would kind of like to see Jordin win but I won't be disappointed because all three of them will get signed. I think Jordin has the most potential for longevity. Blake will sell lots & lots of concert tickets & c.d.'s right off the bat & Melinda is already a seasoned pro but I'm just not sure what they'll do with her.

As for me...I'm a country bumpkin who is 44 and the only Idol c.d. I have purchased is Carrie Underwood - who by the way won Album of the Year last night at the ACM's if anyone cares. I do like Daughtry but don't have his c.d. I am also a musician and the c.d.'s I tend to buy are by independent artists that you don't hear on the radio and usually there are songs I want to learn or that inspire me. I think Blake is amazing but I'm not someone who will by his record...there are millions who will though. Same for Jordin & Melinda. It's just not what I typically listen to or play myself.

OK...so...that's just my 2-cents for whatever it's worth. All in all, I just wasn't all that excited this season but the 3 I have been voting for, for the past 6 weeks are in the top 3 right where they belong. It's anyone's guess and I think the votes will be really close.

11:36 AM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I agree, Blake isn't in the same league as the two women. I have no idea how he got this far... I can't imagine anyone buying an album he would put out."

"Why would anyone buy an album/cd done by Blake? The guy has only a so-so voice, and frankly, I think he's a boring piece of whitebread, and not even Wonder bread."

JJ - I understand your point, definitely, but these comments were more along the lines of the ones I was referring too. In both cases they use the word "anyone". I was just trying to point out that it's a very close-minded statement and makes it seem like the commentor's attitude says "if I hate it, then everyone else must hate it too".

Caroline
NJ

11:47 AM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger jennifer said...

That's always been an issue, though, the "if I hate it, everyone should" attitude. Saw that in abundance with Sanjaya this year. Just as common, though, is the "if I love it, everyone should and if they don't they're wrong" attitude, which can turn a fun debate into a not-so-fun one.

That's what makes civilized discourse about something as trivial as a TV show often more entertaining than the show itself.

Believe is as much a Four Tops song as I Will Always Love You is a Dolly Parton song. Unfortunately the Whitney cover seems to always trump the originator.

Oh, and JJ, while Joey is good, Apolo pwns him. DTWS has been a far more entertaining show this season than AI.

12:17 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger AlbGlinka said...

Congrats to JJ-- a most interesting analysis of the top 3. Maybe you should have an AI blogging competition with Jennifer and we can all vote. ;-)

12:54 PM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good point Caroline, I wasn't commenting on those items, and you are correct with regards to those, and Jenn said it better than I, so I just wiped my comments :)

and Jenn, yeah I'm with ya, Apollo is the best dancer, and I was scared to death he'd get dropped last night. But seriously, have you seen in any competition like that or AI, a better final 4? wow! I had no one I thought should get cut, no one that was sooo much better they didn't deserve to get cut, though my personal favs were Apollo and Joey. I just love Joey's showmanship. I would have felt bad had he been cut, just because he's been soo good the whole time at entertaining the audience. and I would have hated to see Apollo cut because he and Julianne look so good together (why do they say they are like brother / sister? they should be hooking up!! they make an awesome couple!! haha) I have thought Apollo's dances have the best footwork and movement and speed. theh Laila, she's just wonderful to watch, though my wife isn't so sure about Maks. She doesn't like how he moves, too girly haha . And while Ian has had trouble connecting with personality, his dances are very good too. You just had to love his Elvis dance. wow! But in the end, I think Ian was the weakest week after weak of the 4, so it seems this is the best top 3 from that perspective.

1:15 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger Mighty Mouse said...

Jennifer - You really think "Wishing on a Star" is an obscure song? I mean Rose Royce had some great songs, "Car Wash", "I Wanna Get Next To You", "I'm Going Down", "Love Don't Live Here Anymore". This is real "old school" stuff! Oh well, maybe I'm just showin' my age. Anyway, Jordin's interpretation was very different but I liked it.

1:46 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger Mighty Mouse said...

Oh, and BTW, "Mr. Melody" isn't obscure to me either. 2nd single from Natalie Cole's first album. Boy, I AM old.

1:49 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger jennifer said...

MM, I was a Rose Royce fan (showing my age too), but I sure don't hear that song too much on the oldies stations, and had to listen to it to remember it myself, so yeah, IMO, it's an obscure choice, after all, it barely charted in '77 and is really most widely known for the versions that came later. Jordin's interpretation probably mirrored more the Beyonce cover than the original version.

But at least it WAS a single, unlike Mr. Melody.

Mr. Melody is probably still the most obscure of any of the judges' choices, and they did that to Jasmine to ensure her departure. Only those people who had Natalie Cole's album would know of the song. It was never a widely-played single that I know of, so while it may not be obscure to those who are Natalie fans with a good library of her work, to the rest of the audience, it is.

2:02 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger jennifer said...

At the risk of turning this into a DWTS thread (but, hey, it's my blog...) that F4 episode rivals last year's AI F4 as possibly the finest, most equally-competitive, fun, nail-bitingly good episode of reality TV I've ever watched. There really was no one who deserved to go.

And if Apolo and Julianne have a "brother/sister" relationship, then I'm the Queen of England. But I'd marry Maks in a New York minute. Or as soon as my divorce is finalized. Whichever.

2:03 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger Mighty Mouse said...

Jen - Actually "Mr. Melody" charted in '76 (#10 on R&B charts) and released after "Inseparable" (my mistake). You are right about "WoS". It didn't chart well in the US (#52) but did well in the UK (#3). Here in San Francisco, they play all these songs all the time on KISS-FM (for us old-schoolers). That's why it's all still familiar to me. Good work! (*all info from Wiki)

2:23 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger Mighty Mouse said...

Okay. Now you've done it. Who do you think will take the top spot on DWTS? I LOVE all three but I think Laila will get the most votes.

2:27 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger jennifer said...

I'm laughing right now, because as I'm reading around, I'm finding that bloggers are referring to the Ike & Tina Nutbush City Limits also as obscure. I knew that one, but I guess that's right.

I give props to the show for not sticking with the standard fare!

2:28 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger jennifer said...

Top spot on DWTS?? Holy crap, that's too close to call. Way, way too close. I say a three-way tie is in order, but my gut says Laila's got the edge, mainly because of Maks (rwrrr) and because people recognize that the female contestants have it much tougher than the guys.

2:30 PM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

haha. I seriously keep waiting to hear they are dating. They are at the top of their fields, close in age, seemingly same energy level, look like they'd have a blast just doing things together. But hey, they're the ones that keep saying in clips they are like brother/sister friends, which is why Apollo was having trouble selling some of the sexier dances earlier on.

I will say, that assuming Maks, and heck, any of the guys, isn't batting for the 'other' team, they've got to be able to get just about any lady to fall for them. Could you really ask for much more than a guy who is fit as a whistle and dances that well? other than maybe having some personality? haha


and back on topic, i haven't a clue about any of those songs you just mentioned. So I'll probably be sitting there in a little while wondering what song it is while I'm lost :)

2:42 PM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i gotta make a login at some point :)

Apollo is my vote. Laila is awesome, and she's got I'm sure a huge Ali sympathy/fan vote. Apollo is the youn stud Olympian with the cool stories in the recent winter gameses, and he's just darn cute (at least that how I think you ladies see him).

Joey is a blast, and is definitely a wildcard, but being in the bottom 2 weeks ago makes me think he has the smallest base.

And I do sorta agree, that the women typically have the hardest job, as the woman is usually suppose to do a lot of movement. But as I watch her, Maks does all the extra moving she isn't and her's is really good. But to my untrained (first time watching) eyes, Apollo is more spot on as a "dancer" and does a LOT of what the real men dancers are suppose to do. so from a "being as close to what a pro does" perspective, I'm thinking Apollo.

But like you, I like um all, a tie would be best !! :) I was really surprised at how bad the other women, besides Paul's ex (I really wanted her gone the first week, but she was so good, I think it worked out well for her), as you would typically think the 'pretty' girls would know how to dance a little haha

but seeing as Guys seem to win more than Gals, I'm taking the 2:1 odds :) haha

JJ

and yes, i know her name is Heather :)

3:01 PM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

LOL, I'm going have to take a day off to ready all this.

I agree with you Sunny about Fantasia. I think the only reason Fantasia is on broadway now is that Oprah felt sorry for her. Diana's been there done that, and Jennifer Hudson's made her look like chopped liver.

Melinda can sing, but I think Jordin's just as good and will be even better when she's Melinda's age.

Blake is the most different, he has his own style. The only problem with that is that's what I thought of Taylor last year and I don't see a lot going on there, (yet).

Anyway I am hoping Jordin wins, I don't care that she is only 17.

Dori

PS: My vote goes to Apolo!

3:29 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger jennifer said...

Jordin is only 17???

3:36 PM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

as TK likes to run on about, has anyone checked Melinda's ID? how do we know she's not 45? haha

JJ

3:47 PM, May 16, 2007  
Blogger Dave said...

Apolo got hosed on Monday night by Len and that 9 he gave them. Their quickstep was better than Maks & Laila's, yet they got the same score.

Their cha-cha-cha was smokin' hawt but they inexplicably gave Ian a 30 (maybe out of sympathy).

Apolo should win this year, but stranger things have happened on that show (like Kelly Monaco winning).

4:53 PM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ok, so I FINALLY got to watch Idol last night :)

lets run it down a little differently. Each singer, best to worst

Jordin
3rd song
1st song
2nd song

The 3rd song is her wheelhouse. That is simply beauty and grace to listen to. It's effortless, smooth, emotional, you can't ask for more other than possibly modernizing the arrangement.

1st song was, well, no idea, never heard it. Sung ok, but nothing to write home about. 2nd song was, well, a train wreck. Bad pace, bad choice (who asks a 17 yr old to sing about a prostitute? an idiot maybe?), and it just didn't work at all. Worst song of the night.

Blake
2nd song
3rd song
1st song

2nd song was definitely in Blake's wheelhouse and of the type and style I'd be expecting from him. The song and rhythm were smooth and easy, and the beat was infectious (at least compared to the other songs last night).

the 3rd song was not a good vocally, but seemed to be a better "performance" or "stage" song. And that's why I think it was his 2nd best song. Roxanne was very well done, and as Simon mentioned, it wasn't fantastic/great, as in order to be that, it would have to rival Sting. But it was 'Good', and very enjoyable.

Melinda
2nd song
3rd song
1st song

wow. Melinda Turner, so that's what she can ride to stardom! haha seriously, as good a 'singer' as Mel is, she hasn't been a knock your socks off, wow that was something I want to get, sort of performer. Tina Doolittle is a great performer, with passion and power and presence. She's finally shown me a reason and a way she could actually be the AI winner.

Song 3 was nice as well, and song 1 was just sort of there.


So, looking at all 3, and their best song of the night, I would pick Jordin's as the best of the night, with Blake and Mel probably tied. Second songs, I'd give Blake the lead, and Mel second, and Jordin 3rd. For their 3rd songs, I'd take Blake, then Mel, then Jordin in a distant 3rd. That was simply a terrible song to give her, and so inappropriate, it's almost maddening.

When adding stage presence, flare, style, dress, contemporary, sellable, videoable, etc., I have to put Blake at the top. Mel's styler needs to be put on her retainer, because they are really getting her better dressed. She's looking much more front than backup now. Mel's been unbelievably consistent, Jordin has recently faultered a couple times, which is what I'm thinking would be her undoing if she is the one cut tonight. For me, Mel and Jordin flip flop position in various areas, which makes it not realistic to pick a "better" between them. So, while I'm not be upset by any Final 2, if I'm AI and the people needing/wanting to make money off the winner's album, I'm voting for Blake. If I want a cool story to send to Leno and the morning talk shows, then probably Melinda. If I'm looking for untapped ability and being able to mold a star, then Jordin would seem to be the easiest to mold.

so Apolo and Blake, send um around on the talk show circuit next week and let um have a blast. Let Blake do some beat boxing while Apolo and Julianne do some steps, wouldn't that make for an entertaining show?!! :)

JJ

6:25 PM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Anniversary JJ! I enjoy your comments. Dori

10:46 PM, May 16, 2007  
Anonymous JJ said...

testing this out.

btw, thanks Dori.

12:01 AM, May 17, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

simon SHOULD go home. It's because of him America didnt vote enough for "his girl" Melinda!

4:49 AM, May 17, 2007  

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