Yea! The Beatles have left the building...er...um...something like that. Tonight's theme is fun: pick a song from the year in which you were born. I'm guessing we'll get some good 80's songs. Top 10, 1987 songs? I feel like I'm about to graduate all over again. Sing with me: And friends are friends forever if the Lord's the Lord of them... Oh, um, 'scuse me...I digressed. I'm listening with clogged ears tonight (really bad cold), but I don't think it will affect my judgement too much. Was anyone else SHOCKED to see Amanda leave last week? I really expected Kristy to go, but I can't say I was sorry that Amanda left.
Ramielle Malubay - Heart Alone - It's very common for a young woman to be able to belt, but not have continuity across her range. She's not in good voice tonight, but it may be due to the way she's singing, rather than illness. She needs to work up and down her range, and this is not the place or time to do that. When she's strengthened her low and high ends of her voice, everything will lock in much better, and she won't have those whispery low notes and pitch problems. Her sound is powerful but unsupported. I think she needs another year of vocal training, then she could be a real contender.
Jason Castro - Things are Fragile - Glad to see him back with his guitar. He looks way more comfortable that way. I don't know this song, but it's nice. Showing some more language skills. I'd love to see him stretch just a little, to put that expressive voice and gentleness into a song with a little more power, emotionally and vocally. I think he needs another WOW song, one that packs a punch. Then he needs to immerse himself in the text...become one with the song, if you will.
Syesha Mercado - If I Was Your Woman - She looks great. Wow...I don't know who did this song originally, but that was powerful. That was a really strong performance...on a par with Whitney. I liked the continuity of tone throughout her range (which is what Ramielle needs).
*********Let me just say that I'm hating that these kids were born the year I graduated from high school! Bummer. Like, totally gag me with a spoon.
Chikezie Eze - If Only For One Night - good for him, choosing a song that resonates with him. Love me some Luther. I'd like to see him stand still and sing a ballad like this, but with a little less of the modern-day r&b groove, handshaking, etc. I'd like him to see him focus. Make eyes at the audience and let us feel like he's really singing a love song. He needs to make us feel like we're alone in a room with him when he sings this kind of song. His voice is gorgeous, but he looks like an immature kid trying to sing a grown-up song.
Brooke White - Every Breath You Take - Wow, cool look for her...although it makes her look older, somehow. The false start was a little scary, but she maintained her composure, which is excellent. This song was good. It was sweet, and so much better than last week, but I didn't think it showed how special she is. I would have liked for her to do something really different in the chorus and thereafter. She's so classy, so sweet. She's unique and special, but the song was not, really.
Michael Johns - Queen Medley - Weird that his best songs are Queen songs. I thought this showed much more versatility and it was more interesting than any of his recent performances. And it was evident that he enjoyed singing this medley.
Carly Smithson - Total Eclipse of the Heart - She looks much more like a star tonight. Brian likes the "wicked rock castanets" in the background. Wow...I didn't get the end at all. That was weird. Her voice sounded good on this song, but I didn't feel the connection. The original was kind of mysterious and ethereal, but this seemed a little empty. I think Simon & Randy are both right, she needs to lighten up a little. Vocally, she's there, but she needs to show us that she "gets" the songs.
David Archuleta - You're the Voice - Hmmm...another song I don't know. It's a strange song, and not really cool, (like Total Eclipse of the Heart), but he sings so well and he "feels" the song, which is good. He looks less babyish tonight, which is also good. I'd like to see him step out of the teeny-bopper persona/style, since he won't be able to make that work for him for too many years. I think he needs to show that he can sing something that's a little more raw and vulnerable, emotionally.
Kristy Lee Cook - God Bless the USA - Well, this is definitely her niche. And I much prefer her singing a country song that was meant to be a country song, rather than a countrified pop song. The modulation was not good. The vowels are too closed, which makes her sound flat even when she's not. But this song is an American favorite, so she won points with it, and it's a good choice for her. I don't think she's going to make it to the final two, but this is her best performance in weeks. Good for her.
David Cook - Billie Jean - WOW...I totally grimaced when I heard he was doing this song, but this? This was much cooler than I expected! This was just AMAZING. That's what happens when a singer understands the lyrics. You can branch out from the original tune and style if you understand where the song is going. Oh. My. Stars. I LOVED this tonight. I thought is was so fresh and original. This is my favorite of the night. I think David deserves to win this season.
So here's my assessment: David Cook gave a stellar performance. Michael Johns and Syesha Mercado are MUCH improved. Ramielle and Kristy are still in my bottom two.
Now I'd like to know, how many of YOU actually vote? Me? I'm an avid fan, but not a responsible AI citizen. I never vote. Well, I did vote for Drew Lachey and Cheryl Burke a while back, but that's another show altogether. And I only did it once. So no, I'm a non-voter. How about you? Let me know by participating in my sidebar poll.
Be sure you get a proper AI fix by visiting Boomama and all her friends! See you next week!