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Archive for the ‘Lakisha Jones’ Category

Come one, come all! The Live Blogging experiment continues tomorrow night at 8pm EST/7pm CST/5pm PST. Just click here and join the fun! I make lots of irreverent comments, take polls, show videos, and everyone can add their own POV to the proceedings. What better way to watch IDOL than with others!

See you there — carry on!

J

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    Happy New Year!

    I know I have been away far too long from my AI friends and fans so I guess this is as good a time as any to start cranking up the creative wheels again and get this blog back on a regular schedule. Speaking of schedules, I’m sure most of you saw that FOX has released the broadcast schedule for season 7 of Idol and I was VERY glad to see the Hollywood rounds getting two episodes again instead of last season’s disappointing one. Now in case you’re one of the three people who haven’t seen the press release, I’ll post it here so you can reference it throughout the season:

     

     

    2008 American Idol Season 7 Schedule

    Tuesday, January 15

    Auditions (Philly)

    Wednesday, January 16

    Auditions (Dallas)

    Tuesday, January 22

    Auditions (San Diego)

    Wednesday, January 23

    Auditions (Charleston)

    Tuesday, January 29

    Auditions (Omaha)

    Wednesday, January 30

    Auditions  (Miami)

    Tuesday, February 5

    Auditions  (Atlanta)

    Wednesday, February 6

    Auditions (Could be “Best of the Worst” – I hate those!)

    Tuesday, February 12

    Hollywood Part 1

    Wednesday, February 13

    Hollywood Part 2 – Top 24 Revealed

    Tuesday, February 19

    Top 12 Males

    Wednesday, February 20

    Top 12 Females

    Thursday, February 21

    Top 24 Elimination

    Tuesday, February 26

    Top 10 Males

    Wednesday, February 27

    Top 10 Females

    Thursday, February 28

    Top 20 Elimination

    Tuesday, March 4

    Top 8 Males

    Wednesday, March 5

    Top 8 Females

    Thursday, March 6

    Top 16 Elimination – Top 12 established

    Tuesday, March 11

    Top 12 Perform

    Wednesday, March 12

    Top 12 Elimination

    Tuesday, March 18

    Top 11 Perform

    Wednesday, March 19

    Top 11 Elimination

    Tuesday, March 25

    Top 10 Perform

    Wednesday, March 26

    Top 10 Elimination

    Tuesday, April 1

    Top 9 Perform

    Wednesday, April 2

    Top 9 Elimination

    Tuesday, April 8

    Top 8 Perform

    Wednesday, April 9

    Idol Gives Back 2

    Thursday, April 10

    Top 8 Elimination

    Tuesday, April 15

    Top 7 Perform

    Wednesday, April 16

    Top 7 Elimination

    Tuesday, April 22

    Top 6 Perform

    Wednesday, April 23

    Top 6 Elimination

    Tuesday, April 29

    Top 5 Perform

    Wednesday, April 30

    Top 5 Elimination

    Tuesday, May 6

    Top 4 Perform

    Wednesday, May 7

    Top 4 Elimination

    Tuesday, May 13

    Top 3 Perform

    Wednesday, May 14

    Top 3 Elimination

    Tuesday, May 20

    Final 2 Perform

    Wednesday, May 21

    Season Finale & Winner

     

    Other than another installment of Idol Gives Back, which I have mixed feelings about, it should be another interesting year of bad auditions, questionable judging and America getting it wrong at least ten times, if not more. Has Idol become predictable? In a way, yes — but it still manages to provide enough angst and raw emotions from both contestants and viewers to keep it the main topic of water cooler conversation from January to May. Couple that with the lack of any viable competition due to the writers’ strike and it should top the Nielsen’s easily again this year. There will, however, be some changes and additions and I am looking forward to them. From what we already know:

     

    ****Less focus on guest mentors and more on the contestants themselves in an effort to get to know them better. I would hate to see the producers do away with mentors altogether (especially the music god himself, Barry Manilow, who is due for another visit this year) because some of them, like Barry, really do care about the kids and want to see them do their best. However, last year’s over-emphasis, I believe, did take away from getting to see the contestants as regular folks just like us and allowed one very charismatic individual to get more attention for his non-singing antics than he deserved. Let’s hope the producers have learned a lesson from this.

     

    ****Allowing the contestants to show other sides of their musical abilities is certainly a welcome addition. Most of the other big Idol franchises already allow this and I believe it does help show how musically well rounded an individual is or isn’t. As a musician myself, I think it takes a lot more than a pretty voice to make it BIG in music or to achieve longevity in this field. Building on skills and gifts, as well as the occasional reinvention of the artists, helps to keep their creativity alive and, hopefully, keeps them out of becoming boring or trite to the listening and buying public. Since most Idol contestants haven’t traditionally had much experience or “dues paying” prior to being on the show (there are exceptions, obviously), they seem to lack the staying power of others who have taken awhile to “make it.” However, the public seems to think that if a musician isn’t ALWAYS in the news or on TV or on the radio that they have somehow “failed” at making a career of music – which is not necessarily true. Being able to judge a contestant’s full musical potential may begin to tip the scales away from those with just great voices and towards the “total musical package” types – something that may not be a bad thing. I guess we’ll have to see what the producers put forward this year for us to judge (and it had better be better than last year…).

     

     

    If you’re like me, with the holidays now a fond memory and the writers’ strike making TV more of a vast wasteland, you’re just as anxious for Idol to get going. It’s only a little longer, folks… get those TiVOs and DVRs primed and ready… we’re almost there and I’M READY! Are you?

     

    Carry on!

    J

     

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From Mandisa’s myspace blog:

Well it is a sad sad day as I sit in my hotel room here in Grand Rapids. I should have been able to tell by the prevalent chill I felt when I walked off of the airplane that something wasn’t right. Or maybe it was the fifty missed calls and texts that should have clued me in. But it was finally the voice of my friend Bryan that broke the news…Melinda’s time on Idol has come to an end.

Sorry I didn’t get to write last week. I was on a massive radio tour and I was not able to watch the show until this weekend. Was sad to see Lakisha go but nothing compares to tonight. I am kicking off another week of appearances and performances that culminates in LA for the finale next week. I so expected to have my “I love Melinda” sign waving in the audience (As a matter of fact, I still may!) She had a long and successful run but I will tell you like I just called and left a message telling her…it only begins now.

I know that we all get caught up in who finishes in what place but I am learning that one’s success has less to do with the order of your elimination, and more to do with how you carry yourself on the show with the time you had. I know that Melinda’s elimination was a blessing in disguise. Certain things come along with the title of “American Idol”. Some of those things are good. Some are not. After my time on Idol I see eliminations a lot differently than I did before my experience. Like me, Melinda loves God with all of her heart. Because of that, her steps are ordered. She wasn’t eliminated merely because of a song, a faulty phone line, a judge’s comment, or anything else. She was “invited to exit” because God has a plan for her that goes beyond what our human minds can understand. He also has a plan for Jordin, Blake, you, and everyone else in the world. We don’t always understand it, but because He is a loving God, we can always trust it.

Will you join me this week in praying for my girl? Pray for peace, understanding, and faith. Finally, ask God to make His plans clear. And while we’re at it, let’s lift up Jordin and Blake. They have a busy week ahead of them and I can only imagine the pressure they must be facing. Let’s pray for good rest, health, creativity, and humility.

I love you guys!

Disa

www.myspace.com/mandisa

She’s right. Very much so. Melinda WILL be fine in the long run. Blake and Jordin DO need our prayers for this very tough week ahead.

Something to think about, I suppose…

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Oops, I did it again! 😉 I used a song title to accurately describe the goal our four songbirds were shooting for tonight. Unfortunately, they would get no help whatsoever from the Barry Gibb/Bee Gees Songbook on what was toted as “boogie night.” Actually, it was more like “bogey night” at the local golf course — with more balls landing in the beach (sand trap) rather than on the green and no hole-in-ones in sight. These kids showed what little they knew of the Gibbs’ musical legend and had multiple problems with song selection, key choices and overall musical interpretation.

 

I’m beginning to believe that this IS the worst season of Idol, even surpassing Season 3 for that dubious title. Whatever happened to the great amateur talent search I came to know, love and obsess over these last 5 years? It’s showing its true colors as just another reality series and God knows we have quite enough of them.

 

So, was there anything left for me to critique this week from my vantage point on the red leather couch? You betcha! With the added bonus of TWO song performances (it’s that time again, folks!) let’s see what I managed to come up with, shall we?

 

Melinda Doolittle

Love You Inside and Out

I was a little nervous about how she would do with the Bee Gees songbook but she managed to apply her usual brand of great vocal technique and killer performing instincts for yet another slam dunk. Perhaps her slow and steady nature can win this race. I wouldn’t be sad if she did just that.

 

How Can You Mend a Broken Heart

I can’t take it anymore — give her the title and be DONE with it! She is just too good.

SAFE is the only word I can think of for her at this moment.

 

 

Blake Lewis

You Should Be Dancin’

Well, he came out of the gate with a bit of a pitch problem and had a tough time recovering mentally after that. I’m not sure the beatboxing worked for this song but I thought he had a decent falsetto and pulled off staying on it for the entire song. He’s gets props from me for that. I would have rather heard him put his unique spin on Jive Talkin’ instead. Just MHO.

 

This is Where I Came In

“Contemporary rebel” — Paula, that is a perfect label for him. He certainly marches (or dances) to his own beatbox band and that’s why I like him a lot. Do I want him to win? Not really, but he DOES have a bright future in the music biz. I have a feeling the other two talking heads were gunning for his departure but I hope the voters see his musical worth and keep him on that stage to sing another week.

On the bubble but his fans should keep him alive for one more week.

 

LaKisha Jones

Stayin’ Alive

Uh, her chances of doing that are not so hot after this number. Why does she continue to throw away the advice of her mentors?! That was the third time she didn’t listen and the third time she got panned for it. I can certainly understand singing a song “my way” but sometimes others DO know better and are more objective. She has a lot to learn about dying to her own interests if she plans on advancing in the music business.

 

Run to Me

My main comment about this song? KiKi don’t do “soft” well at all. I’m not just knocking the ending either. I felt she was weaker in the bottom register any time she was there and then resorted to screaming at the end, which made her go hoarse at the very end. Simon was correct about her being vulnerable and unless Blake’s fans are asleep at the phone, she will be the one hearing Daughtry’s song tomorrow night.

On the bubble BIG TIME and it just might POP!

 

Jordin Sparks

To Love Somebody

She’s BAAAACCCCKKK and I’m lovin’ it! I’m just like Randy when I keep harping on the fact that she is ONLY 17 but that’s what makes her so amazingly good. Her composure, control and overall confidence is way beyond her years, allowing her to wrap her vocals around a melody and sell it convincingly. She would benefit the most from winning this competition and I believe she won’t really have a career without doing so. Guess you all know where my votes are continuing to go, eh?

 

Woman in Love

OK, were the judges smoking crack before her performance because neither my husband nor I heard what the three of them where hearing. That child sang the freaking heck out of a very difficult song and while I might have heard a bit of pushing once or twice it was NOTHING like the critique that the judging troika was spewing in her direction. And we’re not watching this on some 20 inch no-name brand TV — we’re talking a 42 inch Sony Bravia HDTV with a Yamaha 7.1 surround sound (and the bass was truly a tad LOUD tonight – the band needs to watch that!). I’ve been impressed and happy that she’s taken more risks than any other woman contestant, providing us with some of the more memorable performances in the year of vocal drought. As I’ve said before, she is the prime example of what this competition started out to be. Let’s keep her in this so that she can have a decent shot at winning.

Should be safe but I trust no one so I will vote like heck for her!

 

 

Where does that leave us? Well, my prediction for bottom two has to be Lakisha and Blake but this is traditionally the week of the upset so don’t be surprised if Melinda lands there instead of Blake. Who will get “das boot?” It should be Lakisha but may I remind everyone that both Tamyra and LaToya never made it passed the final 4, while Clay…well, I’m not gonna get into that fiasco again…

 

‘Nuf said.

 

Now let me go vote and then chew my nails until the results show…

 

Carry on!

J

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I about lost my hot chocolate over this GREAT video by Grey Blackwell found on the Raleigh News and Observer website. I just HAD to share this with y’all so ENJOY!

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I couldn’t resist using a Bon Jovi song in the title since, along with the fact that tonight the singers are paying homage to the career of Jon Bon Jovi, there is a rare DOUBLE ELMINIATION this week.  I’m not so sure the producers should have played the “charity” card with the contestants but we’re kinda stuck with this mess.  Speaking of a mess, I thought last Wednesday night’s drama known as Idol Gives Back was, in a word, lame.  Not that raising money for worthy causes is lame, but sort of “pre-empting” a reality show competition to play Jerry Lewis was a little in that vein.  I felt that it slowed the momentum and rhythm of the competition, especially since there was no more Sanjaya to talk about, to the point where some of the less committed viewers might start to fade away.  Let’s hope that theory doesn’t get reflected in this week’s voting because who ever had a bad week last week may not be able to rebound this week, even with another 4 hour voting window.  Idol needs to stick to what it does best and so far this season it has gone so far afield that it could be “jumping the shark” as I type.   I’d hate to see that happen.

 

So, now that I’ve made you wait longer than I’d like for my opinions on this week’s “rock-a-thon,” let’s get to how I heard the music from my red leather couch:

 

Phil Stacey / Blaze of Glory

For the third week in a row his boy has roared out of the gate and given a solid vocal performance while managing to NOT creep the viewers out too much!  He’s been making me think twice about his chances because of his solid singing but given the fact that he may have taken a little too long to warm up, he may be going out in a Blaze of Glory this week.

I’d like him to be safe but he might be on the bubble.

 

Jordin Sparks / Livin’ on a Prayer

I have loved this child for taking chances and up until this week she was able to beat the odds but, even by her own admission, this was NOT her night.  I don’t think she did as bad as the judging troika made it out to be but between bottoming out on the low notes and trying just a tad too hard to be a rocker chick, she had her first truly bad night of the competition.  Normally that would not be a cause for concern but because of last week’s elimination that wasn’t, she could end up in jeopardy or worse and THAT would not be fair.  Good thing there is a four hour window to vote tonight…now, where’s my phone?

Will make her safe if I have to vote all night!

 

Lakisha Jones / This Ain’t a Love Song

The hubby and I totally agreed on this one — she ended with a bang but it shouldn’t have taken her the ENTIRE song to get there!  KiKi has been struggling for the last three weeks and while this song was a good vocal and performance song for her, she made us wait too long for the payoff.  Now, either folks will forgive her for that and vote to keep her in or they will have had enough and she’ll be gone.  I can’t say for myself which way I’d like to see it go and I feel badly for that because she has a great talent.

This one is TOO close to call!

 

Blake Lewis /You Give Love a Bad Name

That was GREAT!!!  Even my hubby loved it!  I was waiting for the judges to slam him but they, too, were stunned by how masterfully he took this song and gave it a whole new slant while still remaining true to the essence of the song.  This boy IS a musician and even though I don’t fancy his brand of music, his is no less talented and special.  Top 3 material for sure — if not Top 2.

If last week didn’t hurt him too much, he should be safe. 

 

Chris Richardson  / Dead or Alive

If I had too choose, I’d say that was a DEAD performance.  Didn’t care for it at all.  There will be too much comparison to last year’s superb rendering by Chris Daughtry, meaning that might just have been the nail in the coffin for the faux Timblelake.  I won’t be sorry to see him go.

Should be on the bubble and Daughtry should be singing him HOME this week.

 

Melinda Doolittle / Have a Nice Day

I was a little nervous about this gal singing this genre but she just continues to “shock and awe” me!  By channeling herself a little Tina Turner ‘tude, she once again showed us all that SHE CAN SING ANYTHING!!!!  I’m beginning to think she actually SHOULD win because she has been in the competition since the beginning and has pretty much out sung all comers.  She kinda deserves the title, don’t you think?

Miss Doo-a-LOT is once again SAFE!

 

So, my bottom three for this week?  I would have to say  Lakisha, Chris and Jordin with the double “das boot” going to Lakisha & Chris.  I’d say we have an interesting Top 4 this year with Phil as our dark horse, Jordin having to play “catch up” after this week, Blake riding a strong musical wave and Melinda still out distancing the pack. 

 

That is, unless, TPTB have another plan…  😉   We shall see…

 

Carry on!

J

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…because I can’t seem to keep my eyes open to finish my post. I guess my body is reacting to all the stress I’ve been under for the past 9 months and instead of rushing something to put up tonight, I should be able to finish it by mid-afternoon tomorrow. Sorry for keeping you in suspense but I will return before you know it!

Thanks!

J.

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