Wednesday, March 31, 2010

American Idol - Didi goes home

I was 3 for 3 in who I thought would go home. Tim, Katie and Didi. In the end, Didi's song choice did her in. I really am a fan of Didi and hope to see her do something good in the future. I'll be looking forward to it!

American Idol does Soul / R&B

American Idol did Soul / R&B last night with Usher as the mentor. Before I go onto my thoughts about the show, I want to comment on Usher. He was absolutely hands down the best mentor I've seen on this show. He challenged the contestants, gave them great advice and taught them how to focus on things to up their performances. I really thought he gave great advice that not only would help the contestants but any aspiring singers watching the show. Can't wait to see him perform tonight!

Onto the show, this genre of music would seem to favor some contestants and not favor a lot of them but for the most part the contestants did surprising well.

Siobhan opened the show with Chaka Khan's amazing "Through the fire", definitely a challenging song. Siobhan has the voice to do it. She didn't do it well though. Maybe because of the time constraint of the song and really just having to jump into the big parts right away or maybe she didn't have enough time to rehearse it to get it right. I don't know what went wrong but it was disappointing and was sad to see her devestated by the critique. I don't think she's ever sung anything bad in her life and the critique seemed to sting her. She'll learn from this and she'll be back strong though. Simon must've been happy to see his threat to Crystal winning stumble a little. He better enjoy last night because she won't stumble again!

Casey went next and did a really good version of "Hold on I'm coming". Same for Michael with his acoustic version of "Ready for love".

Didi was up next and did "What becomes of the broken hearted" and she just never seemed to connect to the song with her vocals even though we saw in the video package that she has a deep emotional connection to the song. Maybe that worked against her? Whatever it was, she just didn't sound good singing it. Ryan, perhaps in an attempt to garner her some sympathy votes, tried to get her to disclose why this song was so personal to her but she wouldn't bite and disclose anything. Good for her. It may hurt her but I'm glad she stuck to her guns on that.

Tim went next and we got this whole mini-interview with Ryan about how he is Teflon Tim who just keeps on despite the criticisms. He picked an Anita Baker classic and surprisingly didn't murder it. It was boring but otherwise solid. After the judges gave their critique, Simon joked that it didn't matter what they said because he would still get the votes. Grrr! :/

Andrew finally showed his potential by doing an acoustic version of Chris Brown's "Forever".

Katie did Aretha's "Chain of fools" and while she sang it well, her performing of it was rather emotionless except for the side to side head bob she kept doing.

Lee rocked on "Treat her like a lady". Sounded great! I could definitely see that recorded now and sounding contemporary.

Crystal did Gladys Knight's "Midnight train to Georgia" on piano and then got up to and stood before us and did a strong performance to finish it off. I used to be a huge Gladys Knight fan growing up and that song is one of my all time faves so it was nice to see it done so well. I don't agree with Simon telling Crystal to not change because her folky coffeehouse-ish style is unique. I think that in showing more versatility and the ability to command the stage without the guitar would make her even more unique and showcase her true overall talent even more.

Aaron finished the show with a good version of "Ain't no sunshine".

Its hard to find 3 for the bottom 3 but I will say Didi is definitely in danger, along with Tim and I'll say Katie. I think Siobhan will get a pass this week, at least I hope to not see her in the bottom 3. Although Tim shouldn't be there, I think we'll see Didi go home :(

Monday, March 29, 2010

Goodbye to a wrestling legend! Thanks HBK!

I'm a big lifelong pro wrestling fan, especially of the WWE. So are my daughters, they were raised on 80s rock, pro wrestling, baseball and now NASCAR. All favorites of mine of course! Lol. I know a lot of people don't like or get wrestling but I really admire these athletes who put their bodies and lives on the line every night for our entertainment.

Yesterday was WrestleMania 26 and we got a great match with the phenom Undertaker against the Heartbreak Kid Shawn Michaels. Great match with great storytelling in the ring. Undertaker is undefeated in WrestleMania with a 17-0 record and though Shawn came close last year, he wasn't able to stop the streak. An obsessed HBK challenged Undertaker and Taker agreed under the condition that if HBK lost, his career would be over. HBK said if he couldn't beat Taker it wouldn't matter. Shawn lost in a touching ending in which he basically told Taker to end his career because he had no fight left. It was a great and touching WrestleMania moment to see the crowd show their appreciation to HBK as he left the ring.

Tonight we got to hear Shawn's farewell speech on RAW to end the show. It's quite an accomplishment in wrestling to have a 25 year career and retire on your own terms. HBK gave the adoring crowd a wonderful, heartfelt speech that brought tears to my eyes. (Hey, I told you I'm a big wrestling fan!) The crowd showered him with nice chants and HBK replied to their chants. It was a great moment for a great wrestler with a legendary career.

I hope Shawn has a great rest of his life with his loved ones. He's earned it. Thank you for the memories Shawn. It's been a blast!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

American Idol - 1 goes home, the Top 10 are set

I was 3 for 3 with my picks! Paige, Tim and Katie were in the bottom 3. Katie got saved first and then it was between Paige and Tim. Paige was picked to go home. The judges have a "save" vote that they can use to save someone that they think America have gotten wrong and Simon (rather rudely and insensitively) informed Paige she was going home because they wouldn't save her.

Its a shame because she is a very good singer but her song choices definitely did her in. She almost seemed overwhelmed by the process. I wish her well and hope she can find someone that can help her make the right song choices for her voice.

American Idol do #1s in week 2

Interesting show last night. The Idols do #1 songs. It should've been good, could've been good... it just wasn't with a few exceptions.

Miley Cyrus was the mentor and she's not a bad choice considering her experience recording, performing and being on the charts. However, some of her advice like understand your fans, etc. sounded hollow in light of recent comments by her that she doesn't understand her fans, doesn't like country music, etc. I'm not sure how much of her advice the Idols actually followed but she seemed happy to be there and they seemed happy to meet her so that's all that matters.

Lee went first and did a very bluesy and cool version of "The letter" by the Boxtops. An old song for sure but I thought he made it sound good. Very Huey Lewis and the News, which is funny because Casey did a Huey Lewis song that I thought failed to connect, match or surpass the original.

Paige went next and her song was Phil Collins "Against all odds" and it was a disaster!! One of the worst performances ever on the Top 12 stage and that's saying a lot! She is sooooo much better than that and I really felt for her. She seemed lost up there. She's probably going home today considering she was in the bottom 3 last week.

One disaster followed by another potential disaster with Tim performing Queen's "Crazy little thing called love". I recorded this song and tried to make it a fun irreverent over the top vocal when I did it and I have mixed feelings on whether or not I achieved that, its just a hard song to do right. Tim tried to do the same thing and although it could've been much worse, it was ok for what he was trying to do.

Aaron was battling laryngitis but did a decent job tackling Aerosmith's "I don't want to miss a thing".

Crystal was next and did Janis Joplin which I felt was very typical and what one would expect her to do. She also pretty much performed it like I thought she would and didn't find it very contemporary at all. If the judges got on Lee for not sounding contemporary with his song choice then they should've gotten on Crystal as well. Very coffeehouse-ish song choice and performance. When getting critiqued she intimated that we'll see her sans the guitar next week so I'm looking forward to that. Looking forward to something a little different and less indie from her.

Michael did a decent albeit a bit loungy version of "When a man loves a woman".

Andrew did "I heard it through the grapevine" and he sounded good vocally but his performing of it and the wayhe attacked the lyrics and phrased things was a bit on the frenetic side. He continues to underwhelm me. Very disappointing.

Katie picked what should've been a perfect song for her voice in doing Fergie's "Big girls don't cry" but I don't know what it is with her voice that just doesn't connect well. Her tone never seems to find a groove or have any excitement to it. I keep hoping she does well but she also continues to underwhelm me.

Casey did Huey Lewis' "The power of love" and while it was decent, it just failed to have the excitement and attack of the original IMO. Kara though was overboard in her praise of what was just a decent performance. She has come down with a bit of Paula-itis lately. LOL.

Didi did a very sultry Pussycats Doll style version of Linda Ronstadt's "You're no good". I got what she was trying to do and thought she succeeded in showing a different sexier side. The judges however were mixed on it.

The fearless Siobhan ended the show with her take on a Stevie Wonder classic. She rocked it of course and was the best performance of the night IMO. Simon, who seems intent on pushing Crystal, said it wasn't so good and that he didn't like her screaming. Funny how they never complained about Adam Lambert screaming on every song last season. Just Simon showing his favoritism to Crystal and he knows that Siobhan is a very clear and present danger to Crystal winning. I liked Siobhan's comeback that she loves the high notes and wishes she could have a song of just high notes! Fearless!

I think its clear that Paige will go home tonight but in the bottom 3 with her will be Tim and Katie or Didi.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

American Idol - Wk. 1 elimination

Elimination night and we got to see Orianthi and Ke$ha do their thing on stage.

We had Paige Miles, Tim Urban and Lacey Brown as the 3 contestants in jeopardy. Tim got the save? I don't get it, don't see the infatuation with him and have heard that he's the one is pushing this season so that may account for the votes he's getting. Paige shouldn't even be in this group. Unfortunately, Lacey's lack of experience caught up to her and she was sent home but she went out with class and a great attitude. I will miss her amazing eyes and wonderful smile and wish her nothing but the best. I hope to hear more from her in the future.

American Idol does the Rolling Stones!

First night of the main event with the Top 12 and they get to do Rolling Stones songs! I was expecting it to be an interesting night and hoping to get some "satisfaction" from the Idol hopefuls!

Michael kicked it off with a good version of "Miss you". Good way to start the show. Simon tried to get snide with his comments to Michael and Ryan marched right up to him and told him to give constructive criticism and you know what? It seems that either Simon had asked Ryan to call him out and remind him not to be so mean or what Ryan made something in Simon click because the rest of the night Simon was very good with his advice. Kudos to Ryan!! You can't see it but I'm giving Ryan a standing ovation for that! LOL!

Didi came next and did "Play with fire" and though the arrangement was rather boring, she showed some strong vocals on that song. Is it just me or have the arrangments of the songs been rather blah this season? Maybe its time for a new house band or new house band leader? I don't know, even the background singers sound off on certain parts. What is going on this season?

Anyway, Casey was next and he came out playing guitar. Solid performance.

Lacey was a bit tentative with her vocals in the first half of the song but sounded real good for the second half. I agree with Ellen in that it was weird that she was standing for the slow part but sat down for the fast part. I also agree that she's thinking way too much out there and overplanning her performance instead of letting it be spontaneous. Her video package before her performance told the real story though, as her Dad said that she doesn't have much performing experience other than in church. Well, she's getting quite the education now! She'll be a better performer for it.

Andrew came next and while he sounded decent and better than he has in recent weeks, his voice just sounds so thin. Hard to overcome that. He has to choose his songs carefully. Still, it was a decent performance.

Katie, hmmm... I really like her but her voice always sounds a bit dark and it throws off the whole sound of the song. Then again those arrangements don't help.

Tim did "Under my thumb" as a reggae song which might work if it was The Police doing that with Sting singing it but not with Tim and that horrible house band. Not good.

Thank God Siobhan came next and quickly made us forget Tim and his performance. Siobhan has jumped to front-runner status in my book. This girl is fearless and not afraid to perform or belt out the big notes. Loved her version of "Paint it black", love her!

Lee did a solid performance but he'll need to pick it up to stand out.

Very good performance by Paige. Her strong vocals were on full display.

Wasn't crazy about Aaron's performance but again, the arrangement was rather boring and brought down the song.

Crystal's performance of "You can't always get what you want" was very coffee-house-ish. It wasn't end the show worthy. She'll need to pick it up, that indie cool vibe will only take her so far.

All in all, the Idols did a good job tackling the Rolling Stones. Siobhan had the standout performance. I think Andrew, Katie and Tim are in danger but if there's any justice - Tim should be going home.

Monday, March 15, 2010


Today marks the beginning of a rough week for my family and I as Sunday March 21 marks the 1 year anniversary of my mother's passing.

Although I am largely at peace with her passing and know and feel that she is watching over us and in a better place, a week like this week brings back a ton of memories from a year ago and that is still rough to deal with. For instance, a year ago today was the last time I spoke to my mom before she went into cardiac arrest and then into a coma the next day.

They say time heals all and it has healed a lot but this is the first year still and this is still a milestone that is hard to deal with. I just want to thank all my friends and fans for the support you've shown because it does help and it is very appreciated.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

American Idol - the Top 12 revealed!

Ryan opened the show by telling us 2 important things, that we might see some surprising eliminations and that next week's Idol will feature music from the Rolling Stones! Very cool!

The first shocker of the night came in the form of eliminated contestant Katelyn Epperly who I thought might be in danger based on her Tuesday night performance. The other girl to go home was the way cool Lilly Scott who I also feared might go home based on her kind of out there performance on Tuesday night. Katie and Paige made it!

On the guys side, we saw Todrick Hall eliminated and although the final 2 were Andrew Garcia and Alex Lambert, Alex was the one that was eliminated in a very emotional elimination for the contestants. It seems this bunch of contestants are very close knit which is good to see.

Interesting voting by America. Looks like its going to be a real interesting season for AI based on some of the voting we've seen so far.

American Idol - guys last chance to make the Top 12

This was it, the guys last chance to make the Top 12. Who would sink? Who would swim?

Lee Dewyze opened the show and he did Owl City's "Fireflies"? Not exactly a song that showcases vocals and even though he tried to make it a little more rock, there wasn't much he could do with it.

Alex Lambert was up next and this kid has grown in the past few weeks like no one else. There is a special tone and quality to his voice that is way beyond his years. If he can just get his experience and performing to match, watch out! Very good vocal performance.

Tim Urban came next and he did Jeff Buckley's "Hallelujah". I love this song and I was scared he was going to butcher it but he nailed it and had his best performance of the season!

Andrew Garcia was up next and he continues to disappoint with his song choice and vocal performance, this time doing Christina's "Genie in a bottle"? Really? When I heard he was going to do Christina before they went to commercial, I was hoping he'd do "Beautiful" or "The Voice Within", never did I think he would do "Genie in a bottle"! Not good.

Casey James was next and he did a decent performance of Keith Urban's "You'll think of me". I'm a big Keith Urban fan and he did the song justice somewhat.

Aaron Kelly had a pitchy performance of LoneStar's "I'm already there". Kara got on him for not being able to live those lyrics and Simon finally had to stop Kara from saying this to the contestants to which I agree. You don't always have to have lived your lyrics to be able to sing them. As Aaron defended himself, yes... you can sing the song as a story with you being the storyteller. Good for Aaron and good for Simon for hopefully putting an end to Kara's misguided rants about that. Simon was in a particularly positive and helpful critiquing mood. Nice to finally see one night of that from him! Could it be he's happier now with his recently announced engagement? Could it be that Jay Leno chastised him the other night for being so mean to the contestants, using Simon's harsh critique of Haeley Vaughn for reference? Simon even admitted to Leno that he watches the show later and wishes he could take back things he said. Could it be he's just trying to be nicer to get audiences to like him more and watch his X Factor show? Or maybe it was just an aberration for the night, a temporary night of saneness for Simon? LOL! Nonetheless, it was real nice to see.

Todrick Hall did Queen's "Somebody to love" and being a big Queen fan, I was hoping he wouldn't butcher the song and he didn't. It wasn't great but at least he performed to the song and gave it energy. Nice to see on a show where everyone was a bit boring.

Michael Lynche finished the show with a very good vocal performance that brought Kara to tears?!

If I have to pick 2 to go home, I would say the 2 that would go home are Todrick Hall and Andrew Garcia.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

American Idol - girls last chance to make the Top 12

Big night for the final 8 girls. This is the make it night for 6, break it night for 2. Who will be the 2?

Katie Stevens went first and did Kelly Clarkson's "Breakaway". Why take on Kelly Clarkson with everything on the line? She listened to the judges who wanted her to do something younger and more current. She did that but then they felt like they still don't know what type of artist she wants to be? This is a singing show and we find that along the way. You can't ask that question at this point and then throw theme nights at them that have nothing to do with the artists they are going to be. Regardless, her vocals weren't on point and she seemed to be thinking too much up there instead of just letting loose with the vocals as she needed to.

Still loving Siobhan Magnus! I just love her style, quirkiness, stage presence and those vocals of hers are outstanding. She can make it to the end and has the cute type of personality that could make her very popular. Watch out for her!

Lacey Brown's performance was very good and she definitely brought her best yesterday. She may have just put herself into the top 12.

Katelyn Epperly did Carole King's "I feel the Earth move" while playing behind a small synth piano on stage and I agree with the judges that it seemed like she was playing at a party instead of singing to get into the top 12. Weird choice of song too.

Didi Benami was back last night! I liked her emotional singing and what she did with the song although it was rather slow paced. Too many ballads tonight!

Paige Miles did "Smile" and it did sound as if she was having a hard time with it. We found out that she was rather emotional singing that song since she's such a big MJ fan. I can understand that since that was MJ's favorite song. I still think she sounded ok and not as bad as the judges made it out to sound.

Crystal Bowersox rocked Tracy Chapman's "Give me one reason". Her vocals were so clear and strong. Loved it.

Lilly Scott ended the show with a weird song choice of a Patsy Cline song and I just don't see how that played into showing what type of artist she is going to be (the judges theme of the night). She sang it well but I just didn't get it. Simon thought it was a weird choice especially on a night where she needed to bring it.

I think the girls overall were very solid with some really good performances. If I had to pick out 2 to go home, I would say that Paige Miles is one and the other would be from Katie Stevens, Katelyn Epperly or Lacey Brown (though I think Lacey is safe). Let's see what the guys bring tonight. Hopefully its more than they've brought the past 2 weeks.a

Friday, March 5, 2010

American Idol - 4 more go home

Well, last night we saw 4 more go home - John Park who went out with a great attitude and with much better vocals than Tim Urban who survived another elimination night.

Jermaine Sellers was sent packing as I figured he would be with his mouthiness and over-confidence. He talks a good game about being humble but doesn't follow it through. Hopefully this teaches him something as he has talent but needs to bring down the ego down a bunch of notches.

Michelle Delamour went home. I was going to say that I thought she should go home but I thought that she would get by on image and on the judges recommendations. I'm glad America saw through the judges and made their vote known. Michelle is good but not as good as others. I think we'll hear more from her in the future.

Then there was the emotional elimination of Haeley Vaughn. Could that have been any harder to sing the lyrics of "The Climb" while being eliminated? Poor girl. She seemed to be really loved by the other contestants as they all were very emotional with her elimination. How could you not like Haeley and her perpetual smile? I wish she lived closer to NY to be signed to my label! I wish her the best. I hope she gets teh vocal training she needs and we get to see her again.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

American Idol - the top 10 girls are back!

Was looking forward to the show last night. Was expecting the girls to really be on their game and I wasn't disappointed. I was following the Crystal Bowersox through Ryan's twitter and was hoping that she would be there and not be disqualified because of her health issue. From what I read, there was an online article speculating that Crystal's health problem was related to her diabetes which she's been hospitalized for in the past and which she's suffered from since age 6. I was real happy to see that she was there!

Crystal went first and though she looked tired, her voice sounded great. I was very impressed that she could sound like that having spent the day before in the hospital and obviously having at least one less practice than the other girls did. But this girl is a true artist and she was confident and prepared. Simon was very impressed.

Haeley Vaughn went next and I thought she sounded good, although her lisp was interfering with the clearness of certain notes. I liked the way she did embellishments and ad libs to Miley's "The Climb" and I found it a very current song for her. The judges however didn't like it finding it pitchy (the lisp thing), her not connecting with the song(?!) and that she still needs vocal training (I agree). Simon of course had to pile on and be stupid after starting off his critique by saying he didn't want to make it worse. Guess its hard for rudeness to control itself. :/

Lacey Brown was next and she took Kara's advice to do Sixpence None the Richer's "Kiss me" and as soon as I heard Lacey singing it I thought it was a bad choice. When did the judges suddenly get into giving the contestants songs to do at this early part of the show? She sounded decent but IMO, the song did nothing for Lacey and I found that she imitated it too much. I hope Lacey can get it together next week, if she makes it.

Katie Stevens sounded solid although I found the arrangement and her singing rather boring for the first part of the song. She has a much better voice than that. The judges expressed the same frustation with her.

Didi Benami did "Lean on me"? Why? This girl has it all, the looks, the voice and performing skill but she makes bad song choices for her voice. She sang it well but it certainly wasn't anything to write home about. Hopefully she also can get it together if she gets a chance to come back next week.

Michelle Delamor was next and she decided that she was going to do a Creed song?! I didn't like the arrangement at all. She sang it well and Kara said she loved and bought it. Simon said he liked it too. I think he just sees her look and thinks Leona Lewis 2.0 and that she'll be a good looking singer for the show but I just don't see her voice being in that league. She was my least favorite performance of the night.

Lilly Scott is flat out cool. Love her vibe, love her look, love her vocals. She definitely has that IT factor. Kara made an interesting point about her (which can apply to Crystal Bowersox as well) that she can be a game-changer as to the type of artists (indie style singer-songwriters) that would consider auditioning for Idol in the future based on the opportunity she is opening for them with her good performances that are making the judges rave about her.

Katelyn Epperly did Coldplay's "The Scientist" on piano and sounded real good despite the extra slow arrangement that the judges weren't too crazy about, they did like her vocals though.

Paige Miles did a really cool version of Kelly Clarkson's "Walk away". Her vocals were good although some of the higher notes thinned out. Ellen loved it but Simon didn't.

Siobhan Magnus! I love this girl! I love her quirkiness, her down to earth attitude and this girl can sing!! She's fearless too! Took on an Aretha song and rocked it out and hit an amazing high note that was a great last impression to end the show.

The girls rocked it out last night. They definitely showed that they were back and ready this time. Good show! Too bad, the girls can't take up some of the guys spots as the guys may have a hard time finding 6 good singers to make the Top 12 the way they are going.

Hard to pick 2 to go home from last night but since 2 will go home, I will say that Haeley Vaughn and Lacey Brown will go home, with Didi also in danger :(

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

American Idol - the Top 10 guys sing

Its that time of the week, AI! Tonight, we were expecting the top 10 girls and we were thrown a curveball when the show opened with the guys standing before us! Wasn't expecting that! If I would've gone on Twitter ( earlier today, I would've seen that Ryan (who I follow) had given a heads up about the guys singing tonight in one of his tweets because Crystal Bowersox had to be taken to the hospital earlier in the day and couldn't perform :( OK, so the guys got a curveball thrown at them, I wanted to see how they responded and if any of them could hit it out of the park. While no one hit it out of the park, there were definitely some line drives in the right direction and definitely a different ballgame from last week. Sorry for all the baseball references, just excited about baseball season finally getting underway in spring training. Let's go Mets! Yeah, Mets! I know, I know but I'm a diehard Mets fan so gotta root for them! :)

The show started with Michael Lynche who did a solid version of a James Brown song.

John Park was next and he was much better than last week. Solid performance. Simon said it was forgettable but compared to some of the performances tonight, John's was very solid in comparison.

Casey James went up next and did a Gavin Degraw song while he played some electric guitar which was cool. I do have to agree with Ellen though that he sings very stiffly and at times looks awkward up there for some reason.

Alex Lambert was up next and his video package showed us that he's just a scared kid up there because of his lack of experience. That's important for the viewers to know. A lot of this season's performers have little experience and it shows. Does that make the show better because its truer to its roots or should this show be for those ready to take that step to being signed? I go with the latter just because of the nature of what the show is geared to, to a record contract but it is cool to see singers with little experience getting this type of platform to show their stuff and grow. Alex certainly grew from his experience last week and showed much more confidence and a little more personality while singing. Could that have been because he had the security of singing from behind a guitar while seated? Could be. Regardless, he does have a real nice voice. He will learn a lot about performing and about himself from his time on the show.

Todrick Hall did yet another out there song choice and performance, this time with Tina Turner?! Is he that scared to do a guy's song? He mentioned not wanting to be compared to the original singers as his reason for his song choices but considering that he is a singer/dancer, I think he would best be suited trying to do songs from singer/performers like Usher, Neyo and even Michael Jackson although he is nowhere near their level. Maybe that's what holds him back. Nonetheless, it was another bad performance.

Same for Jermaine Sellers. While he does rocks the onezie as he put it and that was hilarious, his singing is all over the place and over the top. He's also very mouthy with the judges and seems very over-confident. Funny that he mentioned that's how its done in church since I read somewhere that he was on a BET channel reality show looking for gospel singers and didn't make it so it seems he doesn't have the singing thing quite as figured out as he thinks. Being an emotional type singer myself, I agree with Kara that he's picking good songs but killing them as he's just going off instead of focusing on the message of the lyrics and letting those emotions show.

Andrew Garcia has been a huge disappointment so far. Not a bad song choice but his voice sounded so thin singing it. No power, barely any emotion, no real charisma, where has Andrew gone? Where is the guy that dazzled with that amazing Paula Abdul rendition? He's gone from front-runner to also ran and I think he might not even make it with how he's going. Wherefore art thou Andrew?

Aaron Kelly just keeps doing solid performances. He's definitely a contender. With better song choices and a little more experience and confidence (which he'll get on the show), he can go far!

Tim Urban had a chance to make up for last week's mess and while he did sound slightly better, it was still a sub-par performance. He needs to find a groove for his voice. The judges like his look but get put off by his singing. Ellen once again offered her harshest criticism to him. Simon gave him a confidence boost by saying he disagreed with the other 3 judges and liked his voice. Nice touch by Simon.

Lee Dewyze went last and had an excellent song choice doing Hinder's "Lips of an angel". While he was a bit pitchy, doing rock is not about technique and he does rock well. Best singer of the night. Still needs to work on his performing though as he was called out on it and admitted that he wasn't as comfortable in front of a mic stand as he is singing from behind a guitar.

All in all, the guys were waaaaaaaaaaay better than last week. My choices for bottom 2 are Todrick Hall and Jermaine Sellers with Tim Urban also in the mix.

A bittersweet day

Feeling a bit melancholy and quiet today. One year ago was one of the proudest moments of my life (right up there with the births of my daughters and my wedding day). One year ago I got to bring my mom home after spending months in the hospital and physical therapy rehab to get her strength and health back. It was a proud moment for me to see her back in her own house and I'll always remember how appreciative she was for my having been there. 19 days later though she passed away and that's why this day is bittersweet. I'll always treasure the memory (and all the other memories as well of course!) and it will always bring a bittersweet smile to my heart.