Chuck: OK, the first episode for the final 12 and we get the “Lennon and McCartney Songbook”? I doubt the singers got to pick from the full set.
* - Director Flaw #1: They need to explain the importance of the Beatles? Seriously? Everyone has obviously been told to say "The Lennon-McCartney Songbook."
Lorrie: I feel like a bit of a heel because I bailed out of a friend's Signature Homes party early tonight so I could get home to my blogging duties. But hey, I've written twice about blogging 'bout The Idol, so I figured duty called...
Initial thoughts: 1) who told Amanda Overmeyer to wear those pants?! Can you say camel toe? 2) Paula appears to be as drug-induced as ever. And she's babbling as usual. 3) I wonder how excited Chuck is since it's John and Paul night, and I know he's a Beatles fan.
Syesha Mercado - “Gotta Get You Into My Life”
Chuck: Gotta not. What was up with the Christopher Walken phrasing? She performed like Whitney Houston. Like Whitney Houston dancing. Bottom Three Performance.
Lorrie: The horns really give this an Earth, Wind & Fire sound. I don't love this performance. This was just au-ight fuh me, Dawg. Regarding Paula, she always says the same thing Randy says. And then she adds a lot of blah, blah, blah to it.
Chikezie - “She's a Woman”
Chuck: He took that song from Bluegrass into Elvis into the Who. Well, as my wife said, “He was more entertaining than the last one.” I think it was good enough to save him. Wow, only the first week and I'm already going to miss a prediction. He's not going this week. Top Three Performance.
* - Ryan Flaw #1: What is going on with screaming with Chikezie? Is Ryan on Paula's drugs tonight?
Lorrie: Nice bluegrass sound in the beginning. I've always loved this song. He's really doing a great job of changing it up and making it his own. That surprises me, since, like Chuck, I would've picked him to go home this week- until now. I don't love the stuttering. Overall, a very good performance. He needed this performance tonight, otherwise he would have been next to go home. He definitely will make it through to the next round.
Ramiele Malubay - “In My Life”
Chuck: My favorite song period. Not her version. The audience is waving their hands and I'm simply asking WTF?
Boring. No other way to describe it. She's on the bubble, but not in the bottom three.
Lorrie: Another great song I've always loved. The waving in the audience is a bit chekezie- I mean, cheesy. This girl is pretty and she has a nice voice, but I just don't see “American Idol” when she performs. BTW, she did nothing differently with this song. I think she's been teetering on the brink of going home for a week or two, and I think she will be the one to leave this week.
As for Simon, he was tough on Ramiele, but truthful.
Jason Castro - “If I Fell”
Chuck: Sounds like he's doing the version from “Across the Universe”. Some odd phrasing, and when did he start singing out of the side of his mouth? The beginning was rushed, but he pulled it together. He's safe for next week.
Lorrie: This boy just has a chronic goofy look about him and I want so badly for his days on the show to be over. There are portions of this song where I wonder if his private parts are being twisted with pliers. His facial expressions indicate yes. Paula just disagreed with Randy. I didn't think that was possible. She feels his heart?! What the...
Carly Smithson - “Come Together”
Chuck: The most solid performance of the night, yet at the end of the song my wife and I both said, “Blah.” Simon compares her to Kelly Clarkson. That's the kiss of death, but she's easily safe. Top Three Performance.
Lorrie: I'm excited at the thought of what she might do with this song. I love, love, love her voice. She didn't change it up a lot, but I still really liked her version. I love Carly and predict she'll be in the Top 3.
David Cook - “Eleanor Rigby”
Chuck: It's a sad song. Why is he smiling? I had visions of Metallica singing this at a sound check. I didn't believe he was feeling the lyrics. The judges loved it. He's safe this week.
Lorrie: I always wonder if he's hiding a receding hairline with his hairstyle. Not that there's anything wrong with that, Chuck. I think David has a good rocker voice, but I don't love this version.
Brooke White - “Let it Be”
Chuck: Not that exciting of a performance. Especially when you have seen Timmy Mitchum sing it. However, it was heartfelt and well done. She'll sail through.
Lorrie: She always reminds me of Juice Newton, looks-wise. She's so talented- she sings, plays piano and guitar. I love the delicately raspy sound to her voice. She not only gets the votes each week because of her talent, but she also really conveys that she would be likable in the real world. Paula, again with the feeling her heart comment.
David Hernandez -- “I Saw Her Standing There”
Chuck: And you'll see her walking away if she hears you singing that song. He let the backup singers take the “OHHH” notes. No energy. Bottom Three Performance.
Lorrie: They cut to a commercial and my husband and I are breaking into peels of laughter, wondering what he's going to say about his previous job when we're back from the commercial break. We're back- Pizza bistro?! So that's what they call gay male strip clubs these days...
I actually have always liked David's voice. This performance didn't do much for me, though.
Amanda Overmyer - “You Can't Do That”
Chuck: Never, ever, admit you've just heard a Beatles song for the first time. However, it's obvious. Starts out so-so, but finishes better. Kudos for not changing the gender of the song. She's on the bubble, but safe this week.
* - Note to Ryan and Simon: Stop arguing, shut up, and do your jobs.
Lorrie: Why, oh why, won't they make her do something different with her hair? It's just awful. And she always sounds like she's smoked two packs of Lucky Strikes before she sings. I can't understand many of the words when she sings, but this was an OK performance to me. If she would just sing Janis Joplin all the time, she'd be alright.
According to Simon, I'm not alone. He says he could only understand 30 percent of the words.
Paula- after she spoke, my husband shouted at the TV for her to take another Percocet (sp?). We think she ALWAYS sounds drugged when she opens her mouth.
Michael Johns -- “Across the Universe”
Chuck: He seemed pained, and channeling Simple Minds singer Jim Kerr as he sang. This is important: the line is: “Jai guru deva, om.“ It is not as Johns' sang: “Jackaroo David, Om” At least he looked more sincere than David Cook. He's safe this week.
Lorrie: As I'm compiling this, I'm laughing hysterically at Chuck's comment. My husband swore he was singing "Jackaroo," too. Am I the only one who finds it curious that someone from Australia and someone from Ireland is in the competition to be the next American Idol? Nice performance.
Kristy Lee Cook -- “8 Days a Week”
Chuck: A couple of weeks ago Amanda Overmyer listened to the AI stylists and it almost ruined her. Kad lee listened too literally to Simon and it ruined her. That was a lousy country & western version of the song. And I swear she tried to yodel at the end. No movement. She wasn't confident. Bottom Three Performance.
Lorrie: I love this song, and it's really cute with this bluegrass feel. Some of her performance included too many runs. Randy is reading my mind! He mentioned the runs, too. Paula didn't like it??? That's not like her at all. Simon- horrendous?
This is sad. I didn't think it was that bad. She'll make it through this week. All this lovers' spat, back-and-forth between Simon and Ryan is getting on my nerves.
David Archuleta -- “We Can Work it Out”
Chuck: And he better. The “Sure Fire Winner” has lips of clay. He flubbed one line and obviously didn't trust a second. Nevertheless, his fans won't desert him this week. If he does it again, he's gone. Bottom Three Performance, but won't be in the Bottom Three.
Lorrie: Savin' the best for last, baby! Oh no...he forgot the words! TWICE! He is all over the place with this song. This is by far his worst performance of the season. I'm not familiar with Stevie Wonder's version of this song, so I wonder if this was modeled after that. It definitely sounds different than the original.
Simon spoke and apparently it WAS the Stevie Wonder version.
Chuck's post-show predictions:
Top Three: Chikezie, Carly, & Jason
Bottom Three: Syesha, David Hernandez, and Kristy.
Say goodbye to Kristy.
Lorrie's post-show predictions:
Top Three: Chikezie, Carly and Brooke
Bottom Three: Ramielle, Kristy and Syesha
Say goodbye to Ramielle.
Afterthoughts: Chuck, you and I think eerily alike when it comes to American Idol. If we don't start some Simon/Ryan type sparring, no one will want to read this. Maybe I'll have a pain pill with a glass of wine next week prior to the show. I can channel Paula while I'm commenting.