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American Idol 3, March 30: The Motown Experienceby Sting7 -- 03/31/2004
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Ryan tells us ominously that it’s down to the top ten, it’s all about the best undiscovered talent, and it’s all about staying on the stage.
Ryan tells us its Motown this week, complete with the Funk Brothers in the band pit. We get an obligatory video package, we get the history of the Funk Brothers. They are accomplished, to be sure, and it will be a huge thrill for the contestants.
Intro the contestants, looking more comfortable, I must say. George Huff is the last one out, and that usually means he’s performing last. I’m predicting he’ll bring the house down!
Intro the judges. Simon cracks on Ryan’s suit, calling him Don Johnson. Heh! Ryan calls him the “overpaid egotistical one.” We have guest judges! Ashford and Simpson, the sickening sweet R&B who will add nothing to these proceedings. Mark my words.
No video packages (yay!), on with the show!
Camile Velasco, “For Once In My Life”
Randy - “It was aiiight for me… it had a rough ending… pitchy in spots… it was a good song choice, but it wasn’t your best performance.
Paula - (After disagreeing with Randy) Carmen, Carmen?! Freudian slip… this was your best performance.”
Ashford and Simpson - (Nick) I loved your energy… I loved your eyes, how you pulled me into it.”
Simon - “It was average… not good enough… you have one week left in this competition… you just didin’t raise the bar.”
Sting7 - Camile is taking steps forward every week. I wonder if the steps are big enough. I don’t doubt that she is a talented vocalist, but these genre changes just don’t favor her. This is the best she has been, I enjoyed her, I enjoyed her energy, and she looked markedly more comfortable. But, I fear the clock is ticking…
Jon Peter Lewis, “This Ol’ Heart of Mine”
Randy - “I like the coat, like the whole outfit… got the outfit, got the personality, but your voice let you down tonight… it was not kicking, it was pitchy, weird I don’t know.”
Paula - “JPL, I think you were in the pocket tonight… I think the pitch was better than last week, I think you felt it tonight.”
Ashford and Simpson (Valerie) - “I think you did your thing, you served it up.”
Simon - “Jon, it, ah, God… this is the time when performers should be starting to shine, it was awkward, the dancing was horrible… it was very amateurish performance of a very good song.
Sting7 - Call me crazy, but I dug it. JPL is using more of his voice tonight. His lower range is interesting. He had some pitch issues, but he looked like a star tonight! If you’re JPL, that’s ¾ of the job. Hey, that’s the way his competition is going. I still think as the weeks come, he’s gonna surprise us. That one big performance is gonna punch him right into the Top 3. I think he felt it tonight too. He believed it.
LaToya London, “Ooh Baby Baby”
Randy - “I’m not feeling the hair… started kind of rough… you brought it home, but I was worried in the beginning.”
Paula - “You can do no wrong, you’re beautiful” (LaToya thanks Paula and moves to take off her shoe, presumably to throw it at Randy).
Ashford and Simpson (Nick) - Knowing how beautiful your voice is, you cooled it down for sex appeal, it was beautiful.”
Simon - “You were good… I agree with Randy about the hair… it’s like you have a cat on your head.”
Sting7 - I can’t believe I’m saying this, but LaToya was not as great as she had been, but still better than most. Didn’t love the song on her. She was fine, but didn’t get the hairs on end like she had been. And the hair was a bit distracting.
Amy Adams, “Dancing In The Street”
Randy - “You stared off good… that last note, I don’t know what song you were singing, but it wasn’t this one.”
Paula - “I ditto Randy, hitting that button on the last note wasn’t the right choice.”
Ashford and Simpson (Valerie) - “I wish you would have veered a bit from the original, that’s all.”
Simon - “It was safe. There was nothing good about it, nothing exciting about it. One thing, I figured out who you remind me of. Jay Leno. Like his sister.”
Sting7 - Yawn. Didn’t love this at all. It was soulless. That last note made dogs cock their heads all over the world. She’s in trouble this week.
John Stevens, “My Girl”
Randy - “That was a little rough for me… Nice kid, young, I don’t know if you sang any part of that song in key.”
Paula - “It was a little safe… at this point in the competition you have to be going for the win!”
Ashford and Simpson (Nick) - “It sounded sweet and innocent to me, and that’s not bad.”
Simon - “John I’ve been a fan of yours… If I’m being honest, it was abysmal, it was terrible… you were off-key throughout… your worst week by a mile, and Camile – (someone in the audience yells in support of John and we never know what he would have said about/to Camile because we quickly cut away).
Sting7 - Oh man! That was horrible. Yeah, I said it. Horrible. I am damn near Paula-esque, I try to find some bright side, but I didn’t find anything to enjoy. He sounded like foghorn. Horrible. If you’re a John Stevens fan, you better get on the horn now.
Jennifer Hudson, “Heat Wave”
Randy - “It was good, a little over the top, but it was good.”
Paula - “I think you sounded great.”
Ashford and Simpson (Valerie) - “You went for the big notes and you hit ‘em. That’s what you have to do up here!”
Simon - “Entertaining, manic, mad, but good.”
Sting7 - Thank goodness. She washed John Stevens off me! I figured out the deal with Jennifer. She has an “in your face” sort of vocal style. It’s hard and it’s harsh and it’s meant to sing a sassy number. “Heat Wave” falls in that paradigm. Sonically, she was great with the background singers. You can tell she’s trying to catch up to Fantasia in sassiness, and she’d be better off catching up to Fantasia’s new-found restraint. Jennifer will be okay this week though.1 2 Next-->
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