Matt & Scott Latta, James Hawbaker, Barnie, Steph Dollar, DMOsborne & Jon Osborne all have 10 points each (getting their brackets in on time, plus getting Monmouth correct)
Tommy, Lori, Drew, Yours Truly, Mikey Nipp, Tyler "Sexy Beast" Campbell, Brad Latta, Jon Taylor and Jess Hawbaker each have 5 points, for getting their brackets in on time. Now, most of us picked Hampton in this second group, but Tommy & Lori went with Monmouth--but got their bracket in after tip-off. Jon didn't pick either way, and I couldn't open Jess' bracket, so I don't know what she picked.
Everyone else turning their bracket in from now until Thursdays tip-offs will start at 0 points.
Now, to the other stuff... I'm talking American Idol, baby. The Top 12 is here, and ready to sing for us... like usual, I have to watch this on tape delay, because I have to work on Tuesday nights, but Steph already informed me of My Girl McPhee doing really, really well.
And here comes the top 12... Steph's Man Ace with the Ace Hair... their is Pickles, looking all sorts of good... Elliot Yahmean... Mandisa... Bucky... (Bucky?)... Melissa "No Airtime, No Love" McGhee... Lisa Turtle... Chicken Little... My Girl McPhee (whew)... Taylor Hicks.. Paris Bennett... and Chris Daughtry.
Tonight is Stevie Wonder Night. Steph already told me no one performed "Overjoyed", though had she not said so, I would have totally put that in Elliott Yahmean's or Bucky... Bucky...'s court. And of course, they show the "Stevie Wonder" montage... I still maintain that he's very happy, secretly, to be the last living blind legend, now that Ray Charles is dead. That being said, how cool would it be to sing along with Stevie?
Steph's man Ace with the Ace Hair is singing "I Do, I Do", one I'm not familiar with. He's got the moves, he's got the voice, he's got the looks... yes, ladies, straight from O-Town (or he could be), its Ace Young. His number is 866-IDOLS-1... don't you know the guy who works at the business with the number 800-IDOLS-1 is totally pissed every Tuesday night? At least 800-IDOLS-12 through 800-IDOLS-3 get a break after a while... 800-IDOLS-1 has to endure the WHOLE season. Back to Ace... Randy said "aight". Paula loved it, like usual. Simon? "Lucky for you, the audience is easily pleased." My thoughts? Eh.
Next is Pickles! If I had to write down "The 50 Things I Look Forward To Every Week", hearing Pickles (and watching My Girl McPhee) would be in there somewhere. She's singing "Blame It On the Sun", another one I don't know. I'll be honest... if its not on Stevie's Greatest Hits, I don't know it. She looks great, and I think if they ever had a Tammy Wynette or a Leanna Rimes Night, she would DOMINATE. I'll be honest with you, though... if it weren't Pickles, I don't know that this performance would interest me at all. Of course, it never helps when YOU FORGET THE WORDS!!! Pickles!! What are you doing????!!!! How can ANYONE forget the words to their song when you are in the Top 12 of American Idol? Randy says it perfect... it was like a non-event. Paula wasn't a fan, and Simon ripped her. Not good.
On another note, Ryan Seacrest has gone from "Annoying Idol guy" to someone I actually enjoy watching on tv. He's getting funnier, and he's really learned how to play off of what he's dealing with... of course, when you have countrified Kellie Pickler pulling up the top of her dress and talking about "fake eyelashes", its not hard. Oh, Pickles.
Elliot Yahmean is next... he's singing "Knocks Me Off My Feet", and they show him tearful when he meets Stevie Wonder. I really can't think of any celebrities that would make me cry when I meet them... perhaps if I met Ashley Judd, Steph would hit me hard enough to make me cry because of my staring. Anyway, I've grown to kind of like Elliott, despite his second row of teeth on the bottom. Randy said it was good, but not great, Paula loved it (of course) and Simon said that it was good, but didnt have the wow factor.
Ryan just removed Mandisa's shoes from her, because they were hurting her.. and she sings "Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing" barefoot, and does very, very well. Randy and Simon both agree, best so far tonight. Paula gushed, as usual.
Okay, so here's my thing... let's say Mandisa wins the whole thing. Who's going to buy her cd? I don't know a single person that will buy a Mandisa cd... I know lots of people who have Kelly Clarkson cds, a few who own Carrie Underwood and Clay Aiken, even a Ruben cd. But I dont think I know anyone who will buy a Mandisa cd, no matter how good she sounds. And what station is going to play her music? Maybe 103.7 for the first bit... maybe some AC stations, the kind that play Kimberly Locke's "Eighth World Wonder". All this is to say, she is not, and shouldn't win, the Idol show. She may have the best voice... but she's not the best person to win it and carry the Idol torch.
And neither is Bucky. Bucky. He's singing Superstitious (which is dangerous, because as opposed to the other ones that many people may not know, EVERYONE knows Superstitious) and has come out with his hair down. If Steph goes to Publix to pick up Kraft Cheese and Ace Young, someone else goes to the welfare line to pick up government cheese and Bucky Covington. That being said, for the first time in this whole season, I actually enjoyed his performance. Paula, Randy and Simon all agreed it wasn't the best vocals, but it was enjoyable. Weird.
And now to "No Love, No Airtime" Melissa "Wish she was McPhee" McGhee. They showed the video where she forgot the lyrics to "Lately", as she sang them in front of Stevie Wonder. Couldn't she just hold it up and say "Oh, gosh... they were written wrong!" How would he know? Anyway, she butchered the song onstage by forgetting most of the words... dear, its "I hope my premonition misses", not "I hope my recognition misses". Personally, I always think of the far superior Jodeci unplugged version from 1992 instead of Stevie's, but either way, she messed it up. The judges like her though.
Lisa Turtle is singing "Signed Sealed Delivered", which like "Superstitious" is a little risky... but she nailed it. This was my absolute favorite Lisa Turtle performance--she looked good, she sounded great, and she had fun onstage. Randy loved the end, Paula loved the song, and Simon loved all of it. Ditto for me.
Chicken Little just sang "Part Time Lover". I'm amused and frightened at the same time. I will now put jumper cables on my eyelids.
I think in Revelations it says something about "...and I opened the fifth seal, and there was Chicken Little walking like an Egyptian, complete with slight pelvic thrusts and wearing soft makeup, destroying a song he probably doesnt understand."
I can't get to My Girl McPhee fast enough.
And as usual, Katharine McPhee is worth the wait. I declare it right here... she has now surpassed Taylor and Daughtry, and even Pickles as my total favorite this year. My Girl McPhee just gave a rock solid, unbelievable rendition of "Til You Come Back to Me", and she looked darned good doing it, even though she was wearing some low cut table cloth looking thing. The judges loved her, with Simon even comparing her to Kelly Clarkson. Love this chick, I do.
Alright, Taylor, bring it. He's singing "Living for the City", a song that I wasn't a fan of originally... though his version will make me re-visit the original. Taylor's the man. You know what I love about this guy? Like Bo Bice last year, every single time he's on stage, he looks like he's having the best time singing... maybe he's nervous, but you don't see it. He's just having a blast. Randy loved it, as did Paula, and Simon liked it too.
I'm starting to really like Paris even though I don't want to because she annoys me... I don't want to like Paris... I don't want to like Paris... I don't want to like Paris... I don't want to like Paris... I don't want to like Paris... I don't want to like Paris... I don't want to like Paris...
With all these people getting emotional over Stevie Wonder, perhaps I'd feel the same way if I were on Blogging Idol and we were doing a Sports Guy themed show and I got to meet him. That might do it.
And finally, my boy Chris Daughtry. He's singing "Higher Ground", one of the lesser heard, but one of the best, Stevie songs. And Chris is jamming it too... apparently, the Red Hot Chili Peppers have a version of it (did I know this?) so he took from both the Peppers and Stevie to make a solid song. Randy and Paula gushed, while Simon said he could actually imagine Chris having a hit with this song. I agree.
Okay, top three performances tonight: 1) Chris Daughtry... 2) My Girl McPhee... 3) Taylor Hicks.
Bottom three performances tonight: 10th) Bucky... 11th) Chicken Little... 12th) Melissa McGhee (only because she forgot the words to the song). I predict Melissa goes home.