Welcome back for another week of American Idol!
But first, take a look at my history of the Geico Cavemen!
Tonight, apparently, is Pop Music Night with Gwen Stefani. Good enough.
Here is No Doubt’s first (and maybe best) hit, Don’t Speak:
I was in middle school when “Tragic Kingdom” was released. I feel old.
– Seacrest starts us off by explaining the rules. Songs by No Doubt…and anyone who inspired them. Weird…but as long as we get good songs, it’s fine with me.
– Yes…Gwen is beyond hot. And she’s been beyond hot for a decade.
– LaKisha starts us with “Last Dance.” So Donna Summer inspired No Doubt? Isn’t that like saying Elton John inspired Ludacris? Ah well. Kinda pitchy, but still a lot of fun. She’s really working on her stage presence. I changed my mind…I really liked it. Rough beginning, but she brought it home. Judges gush. As they should.
– Seacrest and Chris Griffin chat in the Sponsored Cola Lounge. He’s looking more and more like John Popper.
– I was looking for a Blues Traveler song and stumbled upon an amazing video…FLAVOR FLAV!!!!!!
– Back to the competition…Chris takes a stab at “Every Little Thing She Does is Magic,” by the Police. Felt very lounge lizard-y. Cruiseline performance. Voice crack at the end didn’t help. Like Gwen said, he was ahead of the music, according to the judges. See-moan thought it was a mess. Odd discussion of music theory. I hope this isn’t it for him…
– Gina the Good Witch is emotional over meeting Gwen. She picks a great song for her, The Pretenders’ “I’ll Stand By You.” The rocker showing her soft side with a statement song…I dig it! Strong, strong, strong performance from Gina tonight. Maybe her most controlled…and the audience loved it. Randy likes her boots…and thought it was one of her best. Great minds! Paula gushed, calling it her best. See-moan teases Gina: “Gina, it wasn’t one of your best performances…(BOOOOO)…it was your BEST performance.”
As a public service, here’s the original, featuring one of the all-time great female vocals:
– Seriously, that was a star-making performance.
– Before we go to break, Seacrest tells us we’ve Queen Sanjaya and Haley up next. Must be the “Clearance Sale – Everything Must Go!” segment?
– The Queen shows some cajones by singing “Backwater,” a more obscure No Doubt song…but he forgets the words when singing it for Gwen! Hahahahaha!!!! His hair is a mess, looking like a Greek soldier’s helmet. Seriously. And then he kind of mumbles through the song…I think he forgot a few words! This is great TV! Randy says Sanjaya can sing, but he doesn’t show it. Paula agrees he isn’t living up to his potential. Sanjaya tries to insult See-moan’s hair. See-moan: “You are in your own universe.” I don’t ever want to see him on my screen ever again.
– Hot Haley crumbles in front of Gwen while singing “True Colors.” Cyndi Lauper represent! She’s still wicked hot…but she took a major step back with this dull performance. Randy: “It was just kind of alright.” Yeah…that’s about right. See-moan: “It was sweet but forgettable.” Exactly.
– Phil chats with Seacrest in the Sponsored Cola Lounge.
– More Police songs…Phil chose “Every Breath You Take.” Good song for him. Should play to his strengths. He starts breathy, which is good. Builds so he can show his big ol’ voice towards the end. Really terrific job. Randy agrees…and says he’s got a “big ol’ voice.” Great minds. Paula says his strength is in the choruses. Duh. See-moan was a fan. Should keep Phil around a few more weeks.
– Time for Melinda! She picked “Heaven Knows.” Hmm…two Police songs, two Donna Summer songs. Interesting, is all I’m sayin’. As always, Melinda is on another level, and not the way Queen Sanjaya is. She’s a professional singer who did an outstanding job. Randy called it “THE BOMB!” Paula heaps on the praise. See-moan was right, saying she was outstanding (great minds), but that this wouldn’t be her signature performance.
– Beatbox Blake and Gwen…interesting match. Again, he proves to be among the best song-selectors in the bunch, choosing “Love Song” by The Cure. His version sounded a bit more like the semi-recent 311 cover…a little more tropical. Not his best vocal, but really, really good. Is it just me, or does he look like Zack Morris tonight? How about now? Randy liked it, didn’t love it. Paula, of course, loved it. She called it original tonight. Umm…didn’t I JUST say it was like 311’s version? See-moan calls Blake the strongest male competitor. No argument here. He compared Blake to Chris Daughtry. Calm down, now.
– Rising Jordin takes on “Hey Baby,” from No Doubt’s dancehall period. See, if you’re going to choose a song by the “teacher,” choose a GOOD one! She’s bigger than the song, though. It’s not a challenging song and she ended up looking kind of awkward up there. She’s amazingly talented, but this one didn’t work for me. Randy says Jordin would be a great recording artist. I agree. See-moan wasn’t a huge fan of the performance. I agree.
– Chris Timberlake closes the show with ANOTHER No Doubt song. Whoa…”Don’t Speak.” I said Queen Sanjaya had cajones for trying a Gwen song…but choosing he greatest and more personal hit song….THAT takes grapefruits! Hahaha…Gwen said Chris “likes to do this vocal Olympics thing!” Priceless. Let me translate: “I won awards with this song and it launched my career. Don’t suck, kid.” The band takes a jazzy/R&B twist on it. Fresh version…I kind of dig it. But remember when the judges didn’t want the contestants to mess with the classics? This song is one of the classics of my generation. So don’t mess with it! Hmmm…Randy liked that twist. Paula loved it. See-moan liked the arrangement, but not the vocal.
– Seacrest tries to stir the pot between Blake and Chris. Jerk.
– Most Valuable Performer: Kind of middle-of-the-road week. I’ll give the nod to Melinda, with Gina and Phil sharing second place.
– On the chopping block: Haley and the Queen. My guess is that Haley goes home.
Gwen Stefani and Akon perform tomorrow!
Thanks for reading! Pass it along!