Tonight on American Idol the top four took on Elvis Presley. Overall they did rather well by the King of Rock and Roll. I wouldn't like to be the person to decide who gets kicked off. Whoever wins will be worthy of the title, yes folks even my least favorite.
Ryan Seacrest calls Elvis Presley the "original American Idol" before the clip of how awesome Elvis is. The Idols flew on a private jet to Graceland, where they were met by Priscilla Presley and a flock of screaming fans. Priscilla took them to meet Tommy Mottola *insert clip of how awesome Tommy is*. Tommy calls AI the greatest platform that has come along in music. He also said that he feels this show will be the greatest so far.
First up is Taylor Hicks performing Jailhouse Rock. Tommy wanted the key up half a tone, to give Taylor an opportunity to shine and show his entertaining qualities. Taylor started his performance out in the audience, dancing and worked his way up to the front. During all the dancing, his earpiece fell out. I thought it was a great, entertaining performance. Randy Jackson said that Taylor was in his element. Paula thought he was original and phenomenal. Simon, being the grump he is, said that it was a terrible impersonation of Elvis, and the dancing was hideous (Paula told him to shut up). He said it was karaoke with a capital K.
Chris Daughtry, surprise, got extra face time with his pre-performance interview, talking about his fans and their odd names. They send him stuff like junk food, stuffed animals, sunscreen so his head doesn't get burned. He also said that "boxer briefs" is the answer to the most asked question. He performed Suspicious Minds. Tommy said that Chris tends to let go, while he needs to just dig in and really get into it. He didn't scream. Randy called it a nice tender moment, but not his best vocal. Paula Abdul said that you sometimes forget how great that song is until Chris sang it, (*note my rolling eyes here). She added that she would see him in the finals. Simon said that except for the sunglasses, it worked.
Elliott Yamin performed I Can Dream, but wasn't very familiar with the words. Tommy said he needs lots of practice if he doesn't want it to sound like a bar mitzvah performance. I thought it was a good performance, and he did manage to remember the words. Randy said Elliott laid it out and made it his own. Paula calls it the best vocal he's done all season. Simon Cowell said that Elliott came in as an underdog and chose a song that many people wouldn't know, but that was the best performance so far. Ryan says that Elliott has really evolved during the competition.
Katharine McPhee performed a combination of Hound Dog and All Shook Up. Tommy said that she has an incredible range, but the song is hard to pull off. Kat did well for most of the song, giving a high energy, rocking performance. She did mess up in the middle, forgetting the words and turning around to try to cover it a bit. She recovered nicely to end the song though. Randy said she had a good time, but asked her about the middle. Kat admitted she forgot a part. Paula liked that she covered it with the choreography, saying it was fun to see her dance. Simon said that it looked like a manic audition.
Taylor said that while they were at Graceland, they went for a wild golf cart ride with Lisa Marie Presley, zooming out on the road with the press chasing them. For his second performance he chose In The Ghetto. Tommy told him (paraphasing here) to cut out the dancing and just sing for this one. Honestly I thought Taylor's version was better than Elvis' (though I do usually skip this one on the CD). Randy said it was the right key and the right song. Paula said it shows a whole different side of him. It shows how well-rounded he is. Simon said that Taylor just sang his way into the semi-finals, calling it the perfect song for him.
Chris decided to pick A Little Less Conversation for his second performance. Tommy said it was a difficult piece, but if he watches himself he will pay attention to lyrics. He screamed at the end. Randy said it was the right key for him. Paula said he picked the song that shows more personality. Simon thought the first song was stronger as up until the end it was a flat performance. He said it was okay, but not as good as the first one.
Tommy thought that Elliott had a raspy, rough and tumble style. Elliott chose Trouble for his second performance. It was awesome, and definitely his best all season. Randy thought it was his best. Paula changed her mind and decided this one, not his first performance, was his best ever (woman's right you know). Simon told Elliott that he has come out fighting and showing more personality. Simon said that Elliott deserved to go through. Ryan talked about Paula's dance moves during Elliott's performance, saying he felt obligated to give her a dollar after that. Simon called Ryan disrespectful.
Tommy gave Kat the advice to emote right from the start for Can't Help Falling In Love. He said the vocals come so easy for her, that it's hard to focus on the lyrics. Vocals might come easy during the clips, but during her performances she tends to flop, just like she did tonight. I don't know what was wrong - the arrangement, the band, or her? I really don't know. The band sounded off together with her, maybe one threw the other off? Randy said she ran out of air at the end and had pitch problems. Paula just tried to mutter some words of encouragement. Simon said it started off nicely, then tossed in some apple pie analogy that I didn't grasp. He said the arrangement was too much, and she didn't choose the right songs.
Okay, so Chris and Taylor are safe, leaving the bottom two as Elliott (based on popularity not performance) and Kat (based on performance not popularity). If American Idol is a popularity contest, Elliott goes (particularly since he got the kiss of death - see random thought below). If AI is a singing contest, Kat goes. My money is on an all male semi-final.
1. Taylor is just awesome and Simon can't stand the idea that you don't always have to sing wonderfully. Simon doesn't like people who have fun. Is it a British thing? I don't know.
2. I heard somewhere that the Idols don't actually hear themselves in their earpieces. So what are the earpieces for?
3. The whole Chris getting all the good interview slots and info thing is just getting old. Do I care if he wears boxer briefs? Only if they have the powerpuff girls on them.
4. How many times this season have we gotten the "the song wasn't great until you sang it Chris" speech from one or more of the judges? Usually Paula if my sleep-deprived brain hasn't failed me. Give me a break - now she's saying Elvis can't sing Suspicious Minds - one of his all-time greats?
5. Elliott got the kiss of death tonight. It was without doubt his best week. He got the thumbs up from Simon to go on, while Simon hasn't really liked him all season. Another contestant did dramatically worse than him. He has been the most improved contestant so far. All of this spells doom for poor Elliott
6. Chris and Ryan looked like they were holding onto each other's butts until Ryan raised his hand to Chris' shoulder.
Usually a big Chris fan, but I was really underwhelmed with everyone except for Elliott.
1) Elliott -- The only complaint I have about him is that he can't seem to control the vibrato. If he had controlled it better, Trouble would have been his Summertime. Vibrato carries with it a sense of polish that is entirely out of place in the Blues.
2) Taylor -- Jail House Rock seemed cliched to me, but In the Ghetto was pretty good. (Still a far cry from the Elvis version though).
3) Chris -- I really liked his vocals on both songs, but the arrangements left me cold.
4) Katherine -- If she gets through after butchering those songs, it'll prove it's not a singing competition.
Well, tonight I watched the first set of songs, but only LISTENED to the second set of songs. Kat DEFINATELY needs to go. Wow...hearing just the vocals, it was BAD. She did sound as though she was screaching. But in all fairness, these were Elvis songs. I wonder what tonight would have been like if this was a Celine or Whiney or Mariah night?!?!?!?!?!
Most of the top 10 will probably end up recording somewhere, but please, make this a real singing contest and vote for the GUYS who sang really well tonight.
Taylor amuses me....Chris shocks me....Elliott awes me (HOW can he sing that well with a 90% hearing loss?) All three of them are awesome!
I would have loved to see "Teddybear" performed by Taylor.
I liked Chris more than usual, My guess is because he was singing more than screaming, however his stage presence becomes lower by not screaming.
Elliott, I was impressed. Still I think he will be in the bottom 2.
Katharine, -EEK- that's one way to blow it, I don't believe anyone in the history of AI in the top 4 messed things up as badly as she did tonight. Thus my guess is she'll be the other person in the bottom 2.
Until the last performance of Kat, I expected Elliott to go home. Now however I expect it to be Kat.
On the other hand we haven't had a "real shocker" this year.. so who knows.. Chris? Taylor?
As I was listening to Elliott do "Trouble," I kept thinking how Taylor would have blown the roof off the place with that song.
Its kind of like every Brad Pitt movie I've ever seen. I always would have liked it film better if someone else was in the part.
You're right. Vibrato and blues don't mix.
And "If I Can Dream" was such a powerful song. Anyone familiar with the original from Elvis' 1968 comeback Christmas special felt this one paled in comparison bigtime. No drama or power to it.
Check out the original. It will give you goosebumps.
I thought Chris was rushed during "Suspicious Minds" and "A Little Less Conversation" is one of Elvis' worst songs.
I was really hoping Taylor would do "One Night With You." Would have been incredible.
Katharine disappointed again and, considering she and Elliott are skating on the same thin ice at this stage behind Chris and Taylor, she needed to step it up and she was average on both songs.
Elliott, although I didn't like either, seemed to blow everyone else away.
Given that, it looks like an all guy threesome next week.
That phrase invokes some disgusting images.
Still say Elliot can't pass Chris or Taylor. What a final two that will be.
I have to admit that I was surprised that Elliot did so well tonight. I did get a chuckle over that nice, little Jewish boy singing "Trouble".
I'm not a big McFee fan(aka McPuke, McSkank, McSmelly Feet), but i did feel sorry for her. i don't think it was fair to throw a strong male performer night like Elvis at this point in the competition, especially against three guys. i doubt any lady could sing "Hound Dog" well (think Pickler). If she goes home its a 50 - 50 proposition betweenher bad performances and the producers' choice.
Disappointment of the night - no one sang "Blue Christmas"
Well quite the night. I must admit that Taylor's Jailhouse Rock was great. He is fun to watch. I would have enjoyed In the Getto better if he had stood still with a single white light on him behind the microphone or on the steps. If he had done that he would have sealed his fate as the winner this year. He still did a nice job on it.
Elliot was good on the first song, even though I don't think I've ever heard it. I thought he was great on Trouble. I enjoyed watching him as much as I did Taylor's first performance.
Chris was much more subdued tonight. I love to hear his voice, but there wasn't much wow factor there tonight. I really was concerned until....
Ms McPhee. She had a great time on her first medley, but when there are only 4 contestants left, you don't forget the words. And then on the second song, you don't let pressure get to you. She bombed bad tonight.
I think it's a guys competition to loose. I've been predicting a Chris win since they came to Hollywood, but my confidence is beginning to shake a little. But not my loyalty. I'll stand by my prediction!
By t he way, my husband's prediction is Kat will be the first AI alum in Playboy. He's such a twit!
One, two, three strikes YOU'RE OUT!! After Kellie did so badly the first time, she got lucky and stayed in. But then the second time, she was GONE. With Kat, this isn't the first time she has completely murdered a song. Last week, she really shamed the first song she sung! It was awful!! While I was never really a Kat fan, I gave her the benefit of the doubt. After these past few weeks tho, I really really think it's her time to GO!
Elliot has such a sweet personality!! And he has really moved far in this competition!! He has come along very well. Each week he just gets better and better and each week I'm surprised at how he blows me away and awes me with his perfomance. He has a powerful voice. I don't think he deserved the bottom 2 last week, and I surely don't think he deserves to leave this week! The first song he sung was great! And the second was simply AMAZING! I really, really enjoyed them and had my jaw dropped the whole time! :D
Chris has always been my favorite since the show started. I love his voice, he has an excellent rock voice. While I know some people don't like him, I strongly think a lot of them don't like rock music or at least not the rock music that has the screaming in it. But overall I love him and he always has my vote! Tonight tho, he did not perform his best and I totally and fully agreed with Simon after his second performance about how it just wasn't "HIM". I thought both were rather "Blah". His vocals, tho, were great! I just love when he sings rock. I hope next week he will have a chance to WOW me again.
And of course Taylor, my mom's fav! He gets her vote every single week! He is always my other favorite!! His personality is the best, and he's different. He's not like these other famous singers you see on T.V. he is his own person and I love it. His dancing may be a lil on the corny side in my opinion, but I still love it and really enjoy watching him perform. The first song he sung I was more focused on his dancing and the performance of it, but the second he just completely blew me away! It was amazing! I love it and really enjoyed hearing it! I agree he should make Cd's with songs like that on it! He was "in his element" tonight!
In conclusion, it's the three guys that STAND out and astonish me!! Kat, YOU'RE OUT! I TOTALLY agree with the post by "FOO" that if Kat makes it after what she did tonight, it proves that this is not a singing competition!!
I'm not 100% sure yet, but I think Elliot is one of the best singers in AI history. Definitely top 5. Maybe the best even. Only Mandissa came to this level this this season in my opinion (and that was only once). Plus, he is masculine when he sings, which is rare for AI.
Somewhat liked the rawness and crudeness of the vocal in the first performance. During the second, I realized something. Not only does Taylor look constipated while he's singing (like one poster said), but he also looks like he's actually relieving himself right there on the stage.
That was too much exercise for this girl, you know. She kind of ran out of steam. It was pretty interesting though. Kind of spasmatic. A bit of a mess really. Still some of the theatrics were amusing. And I really have nothing good to say about the second performance. But my friend's puppy (who I was babysitting) seemed to like the first 10 seconds of it.
This guy spent more time trying to look cool than actually doing any singing. I think he's the new Constantine. Also, he murdered the second song (I think you need to be a lot older to sing this right anyway). And I just don't hear this 'great vocal sound' they speek of.
All of you guys are way off the mark. It was obvious that the judges goal tonight was to make Kat look bad. I think this will completely backfire again. ( re "I have Nothing".) My money is on Kat with the Highest number of votes again. She is so versatile. Being the only Woman on Elvis night, she couldn't have done any better. Except for the missed line in song 1, She was awesome! Her second song was beautiful. Taylor should already be gone. He is an interesting bar performer, but nothing more.
pack your bags katherine, your time is up.
your body language says it all, no confidece.
elliott just keeps getting better and better,
week after week.
taylor is entertaining but no american idol.
chris comes across as a seasoned performer,
but is losing his edge trying to play the A.I.
my picks best to worst
4) with katherine spinning the wheel on leno.
While I agree that Elvis night may have not been the best for Kat, the only female performer left, I don't think that she should stay just because of that. Last week she sung "Against All Odds" which was also sung by Mariah Carey!! Further more she picked the song herself. And she totally failed at it! It was horrible to listen to, I could have put it on mute and saved my ears from it! And the week before she sung a Whitney Houston song and she did not do as well as I would have thought she would. It was not a good performance. So while tonight may have been a strong night for the males, she didn't do well even when she sung female songs! I think she will defiantly be going tomorrow unless a high number of people vote on her looks alone!
"All of you guys are way off the mark. It was obvious that the judges goal tonight was to make Kat look bad. I think this will completely backfire again."
I think this was just an attept to get her pity votes, like the last judging criticism of her was. They know she can't get by on her voice, so they have to make fans feel sorry for her. She's just like Jasmine Trias.
To the people who are in Hawaii, please vote for Elliott, he may have some struggles with the totals. Chris/Kat always get so many votes from that area:
I just don't see what people see in Taylor?? He looks like he has a load in his pants when he's dancing, and jumps around like an idiot. I thought he butchered the second song. Elvis sings it with real feeling and the first song was annoying...Taylor missed the mark big time. I'd love to see Taylor or Kat go. Kat butchered both her songs.... I hope the final comes down to Chris and Elliot!
I'm back.....anyone miss me? I was out of town last Wednesday.
When I heard it was Elvis night, I expected Taylor and Elliot to "bring it" tonight.
Taylor - I would have bet the house on him singing "Jailhouse Rock". He did it exactly as I envisioned. "In the Ghetto" was on my list of four other possible songs for him. Taylor is smart enough to do two totally different styles on one night, and he looked brilliant by nailing each of them.
Elliot - Excellent night for him. I finally figured out what bothers me about him (and no, its not his teeth, ears, or any other anatomical feature). He strikes me as lazy. His latest faux pas was that he hadn't memorized his lyrics before working with Tommy. In spite of all of this, he certainly got into his performances tonight and vocally "brought it".
Chris - Not his best night, but better than I expected. I actually enjoyed the second song because it showed a quieter, darker side than we usually see from him.
Katharine - several of the guest mentors have mentioned this, but it really came home to me tonight. Katherine gets so caught up in technique that she forgets the basic reason for singing is to COMMUNICATE. As I was watching "Hound Dog" I was thinking of how much she reminded me of a performer in a musical revue at an amusement park like Six Flags. I agreed with Simon's assessment - she was over the top in singing and dancing. "Can't Help Falling in Love" - OMG what a mess! Tommy was right, Elvis's version is dead on for emotional content while Katharine had NO emotional vibe to the song. Simon commented that it was like apple pie with lots of heavy cream where he wanted more apple pie and less cream. What he was getting at is that Katharine is so busy adding vocal runs and flourishes that she fails to communicate the basic emotional essence of the song! Tommy told her the same thing. Kat is all technique and no heart. Paris had the same problem...both have been so well versed in technique by a musical family that they forget the first priority is to tell the story expressed by the music through its lyrics. Neither Kat nor Paris ever showed that they "felt" the lyrics during any performance.
Top Two - Taylor and Elliot
Middle - Chris
Bottom - Kat
Going home - either Chris or Kat.
BTW - who ever said there hasn't been a shocker yet has forgotten Mandisa.
Many don't seem to realize that Katherine is as shy as Elliott. The difference is that the pressure of stage fright causes Katherine to make vocal mistakes (and forget lyrics), while Elliott just is not able to do the moves and the dancing, etc. Elliott has improved greatly with a stylist and more movement to go with a voice and song rendition that clearly emotes quite well without anything else. Unfortunately, some think this is a performance competition with a little singing thrown in.
Always irks me to hear Elliott's lack of spazoid dancing and flapping appendages (i.e. Taylor-like) attributed to no "personality" when Chris can't do anything at all if he can't throw the mike around while screaming. He sounds exactly like Bobby Vinton. Bobby made it pretty good, but faded fast (I never could stand to listen to him, and crooning love songs were THE thing, then). Elliott needs some voice training and experience. ALL the other contestants have a LOT of one or the other, or both, of those. But it was Elliott who took Donny Hathaways album from 4000th place to #5 in twenty-four hours.
Interesting to see criticism of Elliott's vibrato when anything that Chris doesn't scream is nothing but a warble. Anything that Taylor "sings" without hollering is so lacking in rich vibrato and clarity as to literally bore me to death (especially when I am only listening). He is often out of tune. And, last time I looked, none of my CD's had dancing, plunging necklines, sexy googoo eyes, or even personality in them...only SONG, VOICE, and BEAUTY to LISTEN to.
Chris or Katherine go home on the performance. Taylor stays due to popularity ALONE. Elliott stays because he is the only on who can really sing (which is, after all, what this "competition" is supposed to be all about).
Shenova said: I'm back.....anyone miss me? I was out of town last Wednesday.
Shenova said: Simon commented that it was like apple pie with lots of heavy cream where he wanted more apple pie and less cream. What he was getting at is that Katharine is so busy adding vocal runs and flourishes that she fails to communicate the basic emotional essence of the song!
Thanks for the translation! I needed it, I was completely lost.
Shenova said: BTW - who ever said there hasn't been a shocker yet has forgotten Mandisa.
Most of us don't consider Mandisa a shock. AI tried to play it up that way, but she simply failed to perform for several weeks in a row.