It should be noted that I now have a hatred for a city I thought I was totally cool with, but when the O’s were swept by the Royals in the ALCS, well, things change*. As for the contestants, I was much happier to see 21 people perform. I don’t know how great I think any of them were, nobody floored me (that I haven’t seen before). That said there’s some definite talent in this group. Top 24 talent for sure!
Since there were so many contestants, I’m going to write about my Top 5 (and my favorite), and then I’ll write about the rest. So lets get this party started!
Hope Kime – Let It Go
Man I bet that piano player was just waiting to make some kids night. And this ever humble 4 year old was ready for it. This kid was so completely ready for Hollywood (and yet she was so humble). God love her. I’m mostly just surprised she actually knew all the words… says the girl who’s brain is 75% song lyrics…
Kelley Kime – Sunday Morning
“I was really hoping you could sing” – Harry.
Yup. I think that about sums it up for me. I actually thought she was one of the best of the night, excluding her daughters performance. I’d definitely put her in my Top 5, so here she is!
Garrett “Mr. Not Even Nervous” Miles – Proud Mary (and Como La Flor)
I was pretty glad to see he was blind, after wondering why his dad was so weirdly close to him. I really liked this kid a LOT. He was kind, fun, definitely didn’t seem to have the nerves yet (those’ll come, buddy) And then he drops some Selena! Then, I could not remember for the life of me what his name was, but I was really excited about him.
I just have to say, so I don’t sound hypocritical… I know I always say, “lead with your song, not your story” (A Michael Slezak montra!). That said, as long as your song is good, I’m willing to let it slide. He was really good. I’m already worried about songs he doesn’t know, for Hollywood week. That said, I almost think he might be better at picking up songs because he learns by hearing them instead of reading them. I have to imagine that’s how he learned to play guitar. Scotty did it in Season 8, so never say it can’t be done!
Cody Fry – Somewhere Over the Rainbow
Well Cody was lovely. I don’t remember much I didn’t like about his performance, but I also don’t remember much of it in general. My only note was about his loveliness. Mostly because I was distracted from the conversation about how his spiel sounded something like a dating service, and then thinking it would be an interesting dating service where you get to do a little interview and then they sing for you. That actually sounds like perfection. Also he looks like my friend Biscuit.
Sarina Joi Crowe (I always wanna add Shapiro… why?) – Does it Matter?
Yup, she can sing. For the 4th time, she can sing. We all know she’s great, we’re all always surprised when she doesn’t make the live show. I wish I had more to say about her. Looking her up to see what I remembered about her in the past, I did come across Big Crazy Barb (man I miss that lady, and Nicki Minaj on Idol). Definitely Top 5, if there was any doubt.
Jess Lamb – Aint No Sunshine (KC Audition)
Rounding out my Top 5, you know I love a piano player. She’s clearly one of the oldest contestant and god I feel terrible saying a 28 year old looks “older” but that’s what happens when you see 15 girls before her who aren’t even 20. Either way, her soul was so evident in her music and I just freaking loved her. I don’t know how she’ll do when she isn’t sitting behind a piano, she looks the type that could be lost in Hollywood week, but I promise to keep my eyes peeled for her!
And now, my overall favorite, of the night and of the week,
SAVION WRIGHT!!! Change the World
Man, talk about a guy I really wanted to see through to the live shows! You’ll recall my outrage from last season!
That said, I think he used what he got from his critics last season and came back even stronger! Also whatever he did with his hair, well, shaved it off, that was a smart move. I just loved him, and I genuinely hope he makes it to the live show!
Andrew Annello – Signed Sealed Delivered (and My Girl)
This guy… My brain went to Dexter (from last season) mixed with Jack Black, without his sense of humor. Keith calling him a caricature was a perfect analogy. He made me genuinely uncomfortable and is in no way anyone I want to see on my television. I liked him a lot more when he sang My Girl, but I really in no way thought this kid was going to get 3 yesses.
Loren Lott – Treasure (and Saving All My Love)
I don’t like to judge a book by its cover but Lauren is GORG. She has such a welcoming presence (in waves compared to the former contestant). I don’t know about the voice, but she would be great in a girl group. “You sound like an actress who is singing” – that’s the way I wanted to react to Riley, from yesterday. But, I do feel that way about Loren as well. I mean, let her go to Hollywood. It’s a cheap ticket.
Trevor Douglas – Sing
Well the fact that he plays outside One Direction concerts shows he knows where his bread is buttered. He sings Ed Sheeran… Remember how, well I’ve said it before, how if you can remember the better version of the original performance, then this one isn’t really good. Yeah, that for this. He’s not bad, just not as good. Personally I think I would’ve just picked a different song because I don’t think he’s a bad singer, this just wasn’t his song. I’m glad the judges are letting him through to give it another shot.
Clark Beckham – This is a Mans World
I kind of like this kid. More than the judges I suppose. In this regard I think I’m glad JLo was the yes, but if he hadn’t made it I wouldn’t have been crushed or anything. Slezak liked it so I can’t be too wrong, but I don’t think I think as highly of him. I did think he has great emotion in his voice which I do enjoy in a contestant so as long as he keeps it up he may grow on me.
Gina “Drummer Girl“ Vinier – Put Your Gun Down
Yeah. You know I love a contestant with a schtick. And by schtick I mean, plays with a piano, but I’m down for the drums as well. There was another contestant that was a big drummer but his name escapes me.
Alex Shier – I See Fire
I don’t know this guys name but I saw his face before, and knew he was in before I even heard him sing. I hate spoilers, I just saw his face on some American Idol thing I was reading. See my previous comment about Ed Sheeran songs. This one wasn’t as good as the first one, but it was more different from Ed Sheerans version, which I appreciated.
Lovey James – Break Free (KC Audition)
I like her but she has a weird way of pronouncing words. Her words seemed to hang around longer than her mouth was moving. It was bizarre.
Also hanging around was a little 3 person montage of Alison Peritikos (Cowboy Take Me Away), Jake Black (Lego House – 3rd Ed Sheeran song tonight!) and Steffi Ledbetter (Back to Black). I didn’t write anything about the 3 of them, but if they make it on TV during Hollywood Week, I promise to bring them up again. Also, if you’re looking for some other people I didn’t write about, look no further than these remaining contestants! From Nashville we had Piper Jones (Mama Knows Best), Hector Montenegro (Too Close) who is actually a phenomenal singer #thatpresentationtho… And then there were the KC folks I didn’t talk about. That’d be Zach Kaltenbach (Grenade), Naomi Tatsouka (Someone Like You) – the only note I had for her was “Tequila Tuesdays must be rough”, and Jhameel (Buy You a Drink). Again, if I see you again, I promise to write more about you!
*I don’t actually hate the Royals or the lovely people of Kansas City. How can I hate a place that Paul Rudd and Eric Stonestreet love so much? I can’t.