(Contains AUSTIN audition from Feb 2nd show, the Los Angeles audition from Feb 3rd show and the San Fran auditions from Feb 9th, and the first show of Hollywood week is forthcoming)
PART I... AUSTIN
Well... aren't we behind?
After spending ten days at The Most Magical Place on Earth, The Lovely Steph Leann and I have missed a total of four episodes of American Idol... so, I'm not going to give you a shot by shot replay, but I will do a recap of each episode as we watch it.
Boy, we do have a lot to talk about, though. We did a ton of stuff at Disney this time around, and I feel compelled to discuss everything from Harry Potter and Butterbeer to the Wild Africa Trek and Dining with a Disney Imagineer. And, of course, we gotta talk about The 100 Coolest Things of 2010...
But, let's get to...
THIS IS (lots of)
First show is in Austin, TX, leading off with a guy who shows up with his sister, one he just met, even though they grew up 15 minutes apart. Maybe its just me, but it feels like there is a Greg & Marcia Brady thing between country boy and cute sis. Just sayin'. Then again, after showing of his self-proclaimed "J-Lo booty", he might be gay.
Young Hollie is breaking down when told her version of "At Last" is not gonna cut it. She is given another chance, and being 17, she goes to... "The Climb". By Miley Cyrus. Yikes. And strangely enough, I can tell you she missed the words. However, the rare second chance gives her a YES vote from all three.
Knowing Idol, when shown a serious of tears caused by rejection of contestants, its always fun to hear the next one they feature, be it good or bad. And its bad. Sir Elton John is banging his head on his gay piano during this butchering of "Circle of Life". Then there are comically bad performance to follow.
Meet John Wayne Schulz. SOB STORY! Mom's got breast cancer. J-Dub is singing "Believe" from Brooks & Dunn (natch) and he's pretty good. J-Lo feels his faith, and Steven Tyler loved it too. Randy the Dawg feelz and getz him.
Day Two of Austin gives us... well, just know, the delight of hearing "Hello" by Lionel Richie while watching this creepy teenager fawn all over Ryan Seacrest, and actually crying about it. And Courtney Penry's chances of landing The Crest probably went from -33 to -35 by doing her chicken impersonation, clucking and all.
Still, Clucking Courtney gets 2 YES votes, with Randy the Dawg naying, and heads to Hollywood.
The break return promises Texas Sized Talent, and it delivers with a trio of crazy, note hittin' voices that all take The Golden Ticket out the door. And the talent keeps rolling, one after another.
Now we have a boyfriend/girlfriend combo who are all about each other. He's 19, she's 22, and they are PDA All Da Way. Their goal is "American Idol's First Power Couple". And, of course, they audition together. She throws down on Duffy's "Mercy", which delights the inner creepy uncle of Steven Tyler. She steps off, and BoyToy comes up. He does a little jazzy number and they come back up together.
YES and YES and they both go to Hollywood, while "Here and Now" by Luther plays in the background. Funny, made funnier by the fact she is crying, only made funnier by the fact he's crying.
Janelle Arthur, a country gal from Tenna-say, is doing her best to wow the judges, and it works, getting three YES votes.
Ryan then narrates, "The winning streak had to end at some time..." and it did, starting with a guy in a large armadillo costume. Cue bad costumes, bad notes and bad auditions, with some insults thrown around the room.
And someone has to be the last contestant of the day, and Casey Abrams is it, with a keyboard shaped harmonica in hand. He's going to sing "I Don't Need No Doctor" by Ray Charles. Kinda screamy, kinda scatty, a little finger snappy and... well, he's not half bad. And they all give him a big YES.
Tomorrow night... The Lovely Steph Leann and I take on the 2/3 show, auditions from Los Angeles...
PART II... LOS ANGELES
Aaaaand we're back...
The question as to whether we've seen this one already is answered by the black bars on the bottom and top, scrolling across, telling us what is closed and all about the winter storm and so on. That's the storm we missed cause we were in Walt Disney World. We rule.
But, back on the couch, at the laptop, for show #2 of the 4 we missed... The Lovely Steph Leann is leaving town tomorrow (on business, not magic) so we'll be watching the final two on our own, but right now, we are in Los Angeles!
THIS IS AMERICAN
J-Lo with her tight top, Randy the Dawg with his gold shoes and Steven Tyler with his big cigar all enter the judges room, and up first... man I hate when they do this... first is Victoria, who flat out says, "I believe that God brought American Idol to Los Angeles for a purpose... and I am that purpose." Naturally, you know that when she starts singing "Lamb of God", its going to be Hell not Heaven. And it is pure Hell. The Lovely Steph Leann moans from the couch, under her pink Snuggie.
One guy, who proclaims how he's loved J-Lo for years, is singing "She Will Be Loved" straight to J-Lo. Kinda creepy, but good thing he sounds good. He heads to Hollywood, as does the next dude we see after the break. Two more buddies are auditioning together, Daniel and Isaac. Daniel sucks. Let's be honest.
Isaac dropped out of school to be a part of American Idol, but neglected to tell his mama, who sits in the auditorium and says, "I so glad my son go to school and go to this too." And Isaac needs to re-admit. Terrible.
Both elicit a quiet, "...oh dear..." from The Lovely Steph Leann on the couch. Never a good sign.
So, they were doing auditions on MySpace (does that site exist? Maybe it did in the summer of 2010) and a select few were flown out to Los Angeles to audition... including Karen Rodriguez. Dude, I love this chick, though part of it might be her singing "You Give Good Love", a classic Whitney song.
The next chick is a prime example of why I don't go to strip clubs. Because I'm guessing 98% of them look just like this next chick, who looks atrocious. And the ewww factor is high. She's got something like 144 teeth, and she says "ow!" a whole lot. And I'm not sure if I've ever been more relieved that she's terrible and there's not a chance in Ensley she'll become an Idol. Stripper Ho keeps singing after the catcalls to stop, and after Randy the Dawg leaves, she follows him singing.
Stripper Ho then hits the rare Third Song After I'm Told To Stop, which is not seen often. Thankfully, they follow it up with a hot chick who does good.
MSFP Big Stats was awesome.... here is his webpage. And more crappy auditions!
And now, Mark and Aaron, brothers who look like AC Slater tryouts in the off Broadway Saved By The Bell show. The off, off Broadway.
A little "Lean on Me" duet and looks like they are in.
Finally... a homeless man, or looks like it, from Arkansas. He's got his own subtitles, because none of us speaks Redneck Ebonics. His name pops up and says, "Cooper Robinson" and then under it, says, "Somewhere Deep In Arkansas". He does a frantic, for-show version of "I Feel Good", but somehow doesn't have the charm of William Hung or the humor of "Pants on the Ground".
Alrighty... well, that's LA, its onto San Francisco!
PART III... SAN FRANCISCO
So, our final audition show. Tonight is actually Wednesday, and the 2nd Hollywood Round show is on, and the new Survivor premiered tonight as well... but I'm still playing catch up with the last auditions.
Got my keyboard handy, my fifth of Zax T and ice, and just took my very first Mucinex for my cough that won't quit.
Normally I don't comment on the cold opening, where they show someone who can't sing, or someone walking away who didn't make it... but I can't go by without commenting on the fact we have a blonde in tears, talking to the camera, walking down the sidewalk, wondering how in the world she can go home to Mama and tell her she didn't make it, and then exclaims, "Just because someone farts, the judges should let them finish singing!"
Heeeeeeere we go! THIS IS AMERICAN IIIIIIIIDDDDDOOOOLLLLL!!!!
First up is someone from the Ukraine. She has done her own music videos in her own language, and says, "I've even doon some showah scenes too..." Um... eew.
She can't sing worth poop, but I gotta give her some mad props for busting out Air Supply! Then again, in the Ukraine, Air Supply, big here in 1981, might be just hitting big there right about now. "Next on WUKR, new song from Air Supply... "Make Love Out Of No-Theeng Et Ahl!" Beeg hit!"
Don't forget, San Fran is the home of The Unambiguously Gay Adam Lambert!
Brittany Mazur is doing "Mercy"... Lara Johnston is doing "??"... Matthew Nuss is doing "?@?" All three make it through.
Here comes Stefano Langone, along with a SOB STORY ALERT that almost cost him his life in an accident. "Heard It Through The Grapevine" is his song, and the Golden Ticket is a forgone conclusion. Its rare that they throw a story like this at ya and have him end up being horrific. YES votes flow and he's ticketed out.
The break is over, and here's the new day in San Fran. Clint from The LBC (thats Long Beach, Cali, for all y'all that don't... now ya know... if ya don't know, you better ax somebody! Word.) is a karaoke host, and of course, all of his friends tell him he should audition. Clint from The LBC does "Billionaire" by... by... oh, one of those guys who have one hit that may or may not be remembered in 2015. Surprisingly, Clint from The LBC sounds... well, good. Almost really good. He's in!
Kenneth Barba is only worth mentioning, because his caption says "KENNETH BARBA, 22, CAL, UNEMPLOYED". Awesome. Bad audition montage. And also, here comes a guy who has his own Transformers constume, and actually transforms into a small car. I mean, I don't even know how to explain it... other than he ain't making it, after blowing, "Born To Be Wild".
Creepy Uncle Steven Tyler is in full form, as they show a montage of young chicks getting their Golden Tickets on, concluding with Julie Zorrella, who has a BACKSTORY ALERT! So, her parents built their home in the rain forest. In the Andes. Atop a mountain. No joke. However, being in Colombia (thats South America, not South Carolina) in the 90s kinda led to some bad times, so they all came stateside. She starts singing, and I'm sold. So are the judges.
Ah, here comes a rocker. Dave Combs comes in with the Lynyrd Skynyrd hair, does some The Beatles, and sounds like... well, every other rocker not named Daughtry. Steven Tyler shuts him down and Rocker Dude splits. Now we see Steven Tyler's bitter side, rejecting several contestants outright with things like, "Dude. Did you hit your head on the way in here?"
Chick comes in with a guitar (BACKSTORY!!) and Steven Tyler whispers to no one in particular, "Please be good... please be good..." BACKSTORY turns in SOB STORY ALERT! when she reveals that the weekend before the audition, her house burned to the ground. Emily Anne Reed has a very unusual voice, singing an old standard, "You're Getting To Be A Habit With Me". I think her voice is awesome, and I want to hear her sing Etta James... but she was a little off in the melody. Randy the Dawg says YES, Steven Tyler says not yet, and J-Lo says YES.
So, this Emily Anne Reed sounds like Alison Krauss mated with Norah Jones, two artists I love, and they threw in a folksy old voice. I would go check this chick's concert out in a local club or something.
James Durbin is from Santa Cruz, California. SOB STORY!!! James lost his dad to a drug overdose. He, himself has tourette's and a form of Asburger's Syndrome, a high functioning form of autism. He's like this year's Unambigiously Gay Adam Lambert, except he's got himself a chick. And now a baby. It's kinda hard not to like this guy.
He sings something that allows him to show off his voice, then transitions into "Dream On". In front of Steven Tyler. That takes some cajones. I feel like if The Lovely Steph Leann were here (she's in Pensacola tonight), she would tell me how hard it was to do what James Durbin just did.
And here we are, up to Hollywood Week... I'll shoot through both of the episodes that have come on thusfar (last Thursday and tonight).