Thursday, March 17, 2011

Go Idol, It's Your Birthday!

Casey was sick when they shot this,
hence the Casey mask. He scares me.
Okay, it's not any one's real birthday but the Idols were tasked this week with picking a song from their birth year. This is the week that makes me feel old. I spend the whole time going, "She was born then? I had been out of college for five years!" Anyway, enough of my impending midlife crisis, here's the recap.

Naima Adedapo, "What's Love Got to Do With It" (1984)
The jazzy Naima had something I liked. The songs she chose showed a unique character and tone of her voice. This Naima, the one that sang last night and the one that did "Umbrella" last week, I'm just not getting. She was pitchy and I really didn't think she did anything new with the song.
In 1984, I was in 10th grade, halfway through the drama and trauma of high school.

Paul McDonald, "I Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues" (1984)
 I like Paul ... but not last night. Despite his smile and quirky meandering around stage, he actually gave me the blues with his singing. J. Lo tried to give him a pass because he'd been sick, so I guess maybe some sympathy is in order. However, he reminded me of a drunk guy at a karaoke bar.
Also in 1984, I was watching copious amounts of MTV and plastering my walls with Duran Duran posters.

Thia Megia, "Colors of the Wind" (1995)
I felt like I was watching the Miss Teen America pageant. The dress, the hair, the song, all were very pageant-y. Thia has a wonderful voice, but she's boring. The kid is 15. I need her to select more youthful songs and actually attempt to look like a high schooler.
I think I was living in Phoenix in 1995. While I'm not quite sure where I was, I'm sure I wasn't watching any Disney movies!

James Durbin, "I'll Be There for You" (1989)
Although I'm getting tired of the faux hawk, James delivered, up to this point, the best performance of the night, and that's saying something because I've never cared for this Bon Jovi tune. James is the resident rocker this season and he's picked songs firmly in his lane (or his wheelhouse as Randy would say), although over the past few weeks, he's shown that he's more than a scream. He can actually sing.
In 1989, I was in my junior year of college wearing ridiculously big hair.

Hayley Reinhart, "I'm Your Baby Tonight" (1990)
I liked that she did something uptempo and poppy, I just wish she had done it better. She had a good energy and lots of movement, but I didn't think her vocals were that strong. The cabaret ending to the song felt disjointed to me. Also, when she talked to the judges, I was trying to figure out how she got lipstick all over her face. Was she trying to eat the mic and then slap it around her face? Could be in the bottom three again.
Meanwhile, in 1990, I graduated from college ... still wearing big hair!

Stefano Langone, "If You Don't Know Me By Now" (1989)
I'm glad Randy set the record straight. Simply Red remade the song. Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes (with Teddy Pendergrass on vocals) made it the classic it is. Jimmy Iovine talked to Stefano about nailing certain lines in the song. While the judges loved him, I didn't think he pulled it off. It must be the writer in me. I wanted him to connect more with the lyrics and really interpret them. I feel like he was running from big note to big note. Of course, that's just my opinion.
1988? Road trips and parties ...

Pia Toscano, "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" (1988)
The song was 1988 but the satin pantsuit was channelling 1978! Pia is an amazing vocalist and her version of the Whitney Houston number was very good, but I'm going to need her to change it up a little more because it still came across very ballady to me and I need to hear her do something other than a ballad.
1989 ... see 1988!

Scotty McCreery, "Can I Trust You With My Heart" (1993)
He's very consistent but, to me, he's not boring. He's got a very limited range and he's totally into traditional country. Even if he doesn't win, the kid definitely has a future in country music.In a complete sidebar, if Mad Magazine's Alfred E. Neuman and Opie Taylor from the Andy Griffith Show had a baby, it might look like Scotty.
1993 ... I was working as a radio news producer in Cedar Falls, Iowa ... and missing my big hair desperately!

Karen Rodriguez, "Love Will Lead You Back" 1989
Again, I was bored. She looked beautiful in her mini dress and thigh-high boots, though. She has a great voice and did the whole English/Spanish thing (after she said in her package, she didn't want to be known as the English/Spanish singer). But nothing about her performance stood out. She could be in trouble.

Casey Abrams, "Smells Like Teen Spirit" 1991
Maybe it was the lights (with the green tint). Maybe it was the growling required in this Nirvana classic. Whatever it was, it scared me. I fully expected to have nightmares about Casey's Shrek colored lumberjack face spinning in circles screaming, "A denial! A denial! A denial!" I really don't get this guy ... but the judges love him.
1991 ... working for nothing as a news assistant at our local Solid Gold Soul radio station.

Lauren Alaina, "I'm the Only One" (1994)
She was back to her old spunky self. Thia could take some notes from Lauren on looking like a teen. Thia could return the favor and give Lauren some advice on how to nail her notes because Lauren missed a lot of them. However, she's got a quality about her I like. I think we'll see her again next week.
1994 ... Left Iowa and returned to Cleveland asking that perennial mid-20's question, "What do I want to do with my life?" 17 years later, I still don't have an answer ... but at least I'm not in Cleveland anymore! : )

Jacob Lusk, "Alone" (1987)
I was so hoping that Jacob had been born in 1988. If he had, he could have chosen "Groove Me" by Guy. I would have called and texted ALL NIGHT LONG had he done that song. In fact, I would have called and texted friends and told them to call and text for Jacob had he done that song. Alas, we got a gospelized cover of Alone. It was good but Carrie Underwood nailed that song a while back and I don't think his version was as good. Jacob has a great voice but I need less church, so his vocals have more of a chance to shine.

Bottom Three (My Choices)
... Thia goes home

Bottom Three (Prediction)
... Naima goes home

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