It was a night of ladies and a theme only this group of ladies could handle – DIVAS! And “Year You Were Born”. Ideally I would’ve liked to have the latter theme be earlier in the season because I love to see early on what contestants will pick when given a relatively free range of song choices. DIVA’s though, was perfect for this group at this time! Unique enough, classic enough at the same time and fitting.
Overall I did enjoy the song selections and “Year Born” is still one of my favorite themes. I like seeing the families talk about their “Idol” and the potential for embarrassing family stories (is – Angie’s Sparkle song). I also really liked Ambers dad. He seemed like such a sweet heart.
I also liked that between both themes, I was right about two things – Candice possibly singing “Straight Up” and Janelle singing Dolly! It always makes me happy when I’m even remotely right about anything because it doesn’t really happen that often. I miss last season when they posted song lists and you had to guess who was singing. I don’t know why they aren’t letting that happen this season but at this point, I guess I’m over it. Sort of.
And sidenote, can I talk about some things that I just wanna get out about the judges?
1. Thanks Randy for constantly name dropping where you were or who you know, as often as humanly possible. If there was a drinking game that involved drinking once every time you said “Yo, dawg” and twice everytime you name dropped, I would be so shitfaced by the end of the episode I probably wouldn’t even remember the last 30 minutes.
2. Nicki – those boobs were outta control! How did they even stay in that dress all night? I don’t know who designed your dress but maybe they need a medal for construction!
3. While I wish most judges would talk less, I only wish Keith would talk more. After Ambers first performance when he said “We’ve got an Amber Alert – I wish I hadn’t said that”. I mean, you’re adorable.
4. Mariah, I don’t really have anything to say about you but I didn’t wanna leave you out. I think I got all the stuff I wanted to say about you out, last week. And I did feel like you talked somewhat less last night so thanks for that.
Ok so let’s talk about “Year You Were Born”
Candice Glover – Straight Up
Here’s the thing. I thought the performance was fine. It was great for Candice’s voice and her whole mood as a singer, yada yada yada… but I have to ask… why this versionnnnnn? I mean, this song could’ve been upbeat and fun and instead it was smooth jazz-y. I was waiting for Kenny G to pop up in the background to sax it up with you. Personally, while she’s still my favorite as far as the competition goes (especially after her second performance), this ranks around the bottom of my list of favorite performances by Candice. And I know a lot of people were barking at Jimmy but I agreed that I would’ve liked a song that showed more of her vocal range. Just something a little more Diva, maybe? But we always have the next performance which was totes diva worthy! So we’ll move on to that one (later).
Janelle Arthur – When I Call Your Name
This was the first of two somewhat bad, or maybe just not some of the best, song choices of Janelle’s. I usually really like her song choice and can appreciate why she picked the song but really… for one, I didn’t know the song. Secondly, if that song made her happy as a child, I really hope that Vince sings it differently because the way she sang, it made me think it was a sad song of a lost love or something. I can’t deny I’m a little worried for Miss Marshmallow this week. I did really like that she brought her ginormous guitar back though. She looks so adorable behind it.
Kree Harrison – She Talks to Angels
I LOVE this song. LOVE. Kree sang it in typical Kree fashion and vocally it was puuurrrrrfection. But. I hate to say that I agreed more with Mariah than Nicki in the critique of this performance (although laughed out LOUD when Nicki told her to “Simmer Down, Sir” – which only makes me think of one thing). I thought it was just weird how much Kree was smiling? It seemed off for some reason. I still (vocally) liked the performance probably the most, of the first theme songs. And just based on song choice.
Angie Miller – I’ll Stand By You
The first thing I honestly though when I heard Angie was singing this was – this came out AFTER “Straight Up”?? I would’ve totally guessed otherwise. I wouldn’t have even guessed this song came out in the ’90s. But I digress. Obviously Angie, the Massachusetts local, was going to get the standing O simply for her shout out to Boston, and that’s deserved I think. The performance was good for sure. Not her best, not her worst but emotionally, she was there. In keepin’ it real, I can honestly say I teared up thinking about the song and the people of Boston. And I don’t even like Boston in general. Well, Red Sox fans if I’m being specific. But I can appreciate anyone who takes immense pride in their city and I know Boston does that. Now, if you want to see a song that’ll really bring out the waterworks, check out the Boston Bruins game and the singing of the National Anthem:
Just watching it again I mean, ugh. I need to remember to not watch these things at work!
Amber Holcomb – Without You
Did anyone feel a Selena moment coming when Ryan brought that fan on stage? Super fans in any capacity kind of freak me out. I guess she seemed normal enough though. Also I thought her outfit looked like either a postcard, or one of those Wyland dolphin posters they sell at book fairs. Right? Do you have no idea what I’m talking about? Here, this:
Ok, onto performance. Amber, sweet sweet Amber. I don’t love you, I don’t hate you, but you are my least favorite of the 5 ladies left in this competition. You can sing, sure. But all the judges praising about how you’re the next Whitney, and how Beyonce better look out? Well, I just think, “What were you smoking?” every time they mention that. I’m glad they brought you back down to reality with this performance. When you sing in front of Mariah a song that is so famous to Mariah, I mean, you have to bring it, and Amber just didn’t do that tonight. Again, thank you judges for acknowledging that this was nooooo Mariah performance.
Moving on to the Diva portion of the show.
I liked who everyone picked for their diva moment and I thought relatively speaking they were all well suited, but all the songs they picked were just a bit on the lackluster side to me. I guess I just expected more iconic songs? Especially with the overall lack of originality in song choices this season. I wish they could’ve just conversed with me, told me who they wanted to sing and I could pick the songs. I’m good at that! That’s not to say I thought the performances were bad. On the whole I thought everyone performed better with this round than the previous round, I just think they could’ve picked more Diva songs. As in, the iconic diva songs:
Mariah – Dreamlover or Hero
Whitney – I Have Nothing or Greatest Love of All (god I would’ve killed to hear Candice sing this) or about 10 other songs
Dolly – I Will Always Love You or Jolene (personal favorite)
Celine – Power of Love, or It’s All Coming Back (I’d never make anyone sing My Heart Will Go On)
Bey – Halo was a good choice admittedly, but what about Who Run the World (hopefully they’ll sing that tonight. That or Independent Women) or Telephone (I would’ve LOVED that)
Barbara – Honestly how would anyone of these group of girls pick Barbara? I just don’t get it. Sorry). With that, let’s talk about the performances. Why wouldn’t she sing Aretha or Diana Ross or Janet Jackson?
Enough wishing and hoping, here’s the reality…
Candice Glover – When You Believe
While this wouldn’t have been my song choice for Candice to sing (it’s got to be one of my least favorite Mariah songs), it was kind of not only the perfect song, but the perfect point in the show, to sing it. For one, she proved she can hold her own among the ranks of of both Mariah AND Whitney! Second, it proved how to really sing a Mariah song and sing it well! I mean, it’s one thing for Amber to sing it, but for Candice to sing it right after Amber and so much better, well it just goes to show you how amazing Candice really is (oh and it was also probably good that this didn’t reference how old Mariah was by it being under “Diva” and not under “Year You Were Born”). It did slightly weird be out because I’m so used to hearing the song be sung by 2 people but if that’s my only fault with this, I’d say that’s a big WIN! It was also nice for her to perform so well and yet be so humble in the act, where for some reason I feel like Amber lacks the ability to actually show her humility, even if she is in fact very humbled to be singing a Mariah song in front of her. Maybe it’s because she didn’t get the same outpouring of compliments that Candice got?
Janelle Arthur – Dumb Blonde
While I was happy to be right that Janelle would sing a Dolly song, I was somewhat disappointed with this one. Yes, I was thrilled she sang something upbeat, and the song was perfectly fine, but fine was all it was. For me it was underwhelming at best. Yes, I liked it but I didn’t looovveee it and I think at this point in the show, to make it to the next round, the audience has to love it. I did really like everything Nicki said to her about how well she’s performed and that even if she’s in the bottom tomorrow to be proud of how far she’s come.
Kree Harrison – Have You Ever Been in Love
I definitely never would’ve expected Kree to sing a Celine song for Idol night. I don’t know why, she just doesn’t seem “Celine-like” to me. The thing is though, Kree is such her own person, I don’t really associate her with any diva, so I guess she could attempt any diva, technically speaking. This also most definitely isn’t the Celine song I would’ve picked, either. I’m a big fan of a lot of her older stuff but this isn’t one of those songs. Oh well. She still sang the hell out of it. I loved Nicki’s quote about Kree not being “country, but worldly”. I agree. Well, at least about the part about her being a lot more than Country. She definitely has country in her wheel house but she’s so much more than that.
Angie Miller – Halo
I can’t lie. I can’t deny. Angie, I loved this song. I loved that you got a little Bey in ya with the head bump thing?
I just loved it. That is all. If I were to even mention that horribly Randy colloquialism, with that performance Angie was In it to Win It. What was that wretched dress though, and the face background? I mean, I suppose that’s something a diva can get away with, but that doesn’t mean it should ever be done. It was beyond weird!
Amber Holcomb – What Are You Doing for the Rest of Your Life?
Amber, dear, what are you doing? Because with songs like this, “Winning American Idol” will not be one of them. I mean, yes, you sang it well. Yes, you looked hot. But who even cares about this song? So boring. I know, I’m not a huge babs fan. I liked Funny Girl, yes. Who that loves Broadway didn’t? Maybe I would’ve liked it more if you had sung “Don’t Rain on My Parade”? I just don’t see anyone that isn’t Lea Michele aka Rachel Barry, singing Barbara and getting away with it. Or maybe if you’d sung No More Tears (Donna AND Barbara) but this just wasn’t it for me, no matter how well you sang it. Sorry dear. Mariah begging people to vote for you? It’s because of song choices like this. It doesn’t matter how well you can sing if you’re singing songs that don’t draw people in. Know what I mean?
Ok well that’s it. Sorry so late but it’s been a busy week! Hope you all enjoy and we’ll see what happens tonight!