I don't watch American Idol. I'm not even remotely interested. But I did happen across this clip of barista Chris Medina, who impressed me less with his singing during his audition (which is great) than with his heart (SLYT; 4.55). Excuse me, but I've got something in my eye.
I hear babies cry and I watch them grow. They'll learn much more than we'll know. And I think to myself: What a Wonderful World
You may not know who Israel "Brudda Iz" Kamakawiwoʻole was, but you're probably familiar with his medley of "Over the Rainbow / What a Wonderful World," which has been included on several movie soundtracks and used on television shows & commercials throughout the world.... [more inside]
'American Idol' (Season 8) top 25 finalist and kooky contender, 'Norman Gentle' (IRL -- Nick Mitchell) in his debut music video: 'Bitch Slap.' [more inside]
"After a day of barbering, Rodolfo Gregorio went to his neighborhood karaoke bar still smelling of talcum powder. Putting aside his glass of Red Horse Extra Strong beer, he grasped a microphone with a habitué’s self-assuredness and [...] belted out crowd-pleasers by Tom Jones and Engelbert Humperdinck. But Mr. Gregorio, 63, a witness to countless fistfights and occasional stabbings erupting from disputes over karaoke singing, did not dare choose one beloved classic: Frank Sinatra’s version of “My Way.” “I used to like ‘My Way,’ but after all the trouble, I stopped singing it,” he said. “You can get killed." [more inside]
American Idol runner-up Adam Lambert created some controversy at last Sunday's American Music Awards by simulating oral sex with one dancer and kissing another. Lambert's follow-up performance on ABC's Good Morning America was cancelled, but CBS welcomed him on The Early Show (where, refreshingly, he didn't apologize). CBS's treatment of his AMA performance, however, is creating some controversy of its own.
I understand that MeFites don't really do American Idol, but if you're the rare one who does, then you will probably appreciate the combination of fandom and geekery that produced What Not To Sing. They look at reviews of AI performances from all over the web, and distill them to provide numerical and star ratings for each AI performance. Every one. EVER. They have a listing of the top and bottom 40 performances across all 8 seasons, which makes for interesting YouTube searching. If you're curious about all performances of Michael Jackson songs on the show or just wish to confirm that Sanjaya sucked, they can help with that as well. The feature currently amusing me is this season's Camp Should-A-Been, where they judge contestants solely on performance rating, with the lowest rated performer leaving.
Claiming "complete rip-off" of their iconic image and sound, Devo are suing McDonald's over the "New Wave Nigel" included with the American Idol Happy Meal. See the video of Nigel in action. "They didn't ask us anything," Gerard Casale told Australian Associated Press. "Plus, we don't like McDonald's, and we don't like American Idol, so we're doubly offended."
Was American Idol's Sanjaya a fraud? Graduate art student Bill Vendall claims that he created the American Idol character "Sanjaya" as an art project. He claims the character is "a symbol for the self referencing nature of progressive evolution." This is being debated around the internets.
Jennifer Holliday's seismic performance of "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going" from the 1982 Tony Awards (YouTube link) brought Broadway to its knees. Holliday not only captured the Tony, her recording of the song became a Billboard Top 30 hit. The new Dreamgirls film, cast with a who's who of modern music stars, will open this winter. "American Idol" contestant Jennifer Hudson will attempt to fill Holliday's formidable shoes.
American Idol 5 on Popmatters. "There are two pre-audition selection rounds before contestants are allowed to meet the judges. Clearly then, the show's army of "talent" spotters deliberately sent Derek, Crystal and the others crashing and burning onto national television, in the sure and certain knowledge that humiliation means ratings." Some insights into the corporate machinery behind American Idol, as well as thoughts on the current season.
"Untitled Inspirational Memoir" by American [White] Idol '03 Clay Aiken hits #9 on the Amazon bestseller chart. It will be published (presumably with a title) in November. Order yours today. Or, run home and mail off your Great American Novel -- or at least your own dashed-off U.I.M. -- to Random House, publisher to the stars.
The public socks it to the FCC "This is not about race - It's about voting for the very best one and being cheated out of that vote!" Clay Aiken fans and Reuben Whatshisname haters unite to make their voice heard. Oh, the outrage! (via The Smoking Gun)
Ok, I'm not the American Idol type, but I was aimlessly link clicking and I came to settle on the From Justin to Kelly movie site. Okay, yeah the movie is gonna suck worse that Battlefield Earth meets Ishtar, but as I clicked a link there to see the "poster you voted on!" I noticed Kelly's butt suddenly had suddenly grown to JLo-like dimensions. Before Betty Crocker's PixelHelper...and After.... Baby's got back! Now, who in the long line of marketing weasels and designers working on this poster said "Let's make her butt bigger"? This is the girl that caught criticism for being too big at a whopping size 6 or something. Are they trying to sexy her up? Make her appeal to more latin/black audiences? Was that corner of the poster just not curvy enough? This one really bugs, and puzzles me.
"American Idol" Star Bounced. Evan Marriott's brief career as an underwear model wasn't a problem. And "Joe Millionaire" contestant Sarah Kozer's starring role in dozens of bondage and fetish films also was of no concern to Fox Television. But the network has bounced an "American Idol" contestant because she once posed nude for an Internet porn site. Is this setting a double standard?
Cable channel FX to run 'American Candidate' competition. You heard me right, folks. Picture 'American Idol', but this time the winner gets to run for president. (Presumably via a whole lot of cash from FX.) Man, I can hear the Europeans mocking us already!
The solemn, the dignified, the high-profile marketing. On September 11th, the national anthem will be sung on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. By the recent winner of Fox's American Idol. Days before the release of her new album. Two weeks before the winner's next, though obviously equally significant, "American Idol in Las Vegas" show. You will also note that this was reported before last night's finale. Meaning, this important symbolic event was arranged without even knowing who the winner was. In other words, Kelly Clarkson is not signing the National Anthem on September 11. "The Winner of Fox's American Idol" is.
Tamyra Gray eliminated! Wow, what an upset. I'm embarrassed to admin that I watch this show, but I do watch it. You should have seen the look on the judges faces when she was voted off - total shock. Word on the street is, people are using software to war-dial the voting system and vote for Nikki McKibbin. Is this Fox's fault for not securing their voting system, or is it just part of today's new Internet paradigm?
The perfect antidote to PopIdol cack - speakers up darlings!! :-)