by Becky Tennant and Bethany O'Neil
Week two of the American Idol auditions had us heading out West to San Diego, California, and down to South Charleston, South Carolina. Last week, we had a big laugh with the debut of Renaldo, but the talent was somewhat lackluster. Would this week be any different?
The week over all wasn't overly exciting, but it wasn't a total flop either.
Of course you had your share of the wacky. For example in San Diego, we got to meet contestant 8000, Alberto Hurtado, who was Idol's biggest "fan." Alberto wrote his own song "Live", but Simon wasn't feeling his vibe and compared him to "a storm cloud on a sunny day." Can we get some happy pills for this guy? Even if he did have a good singing voice (which he didn't), his fingernails were enough to scare us away...YIKES!
And of course we had our share of people who suffer from talent disillusionment. From San Diego, we had Sarah Long who was compared to William Hung. Then there was Monique Gibson and Christopher Baker, who just weren't good, plain and simple. And we can't forget Valerie Reyes, who tried to duplicate Mariah Carey, and her quote "Oh my God, now I am going to be on the rejects now that I think of it, so not cool!"
These auditions make us wonder why people, time after time, keep on trying to imitate Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston. They know that 90 percent of the time it ends up in disaster, and that the judges will bash them. So why do they keep on, year after year, doing this? We just wonder what those two diva's think, every time someone butchers one of their songs. Lets hope they don't watch.
In South Carolina, the disillusion continued. Aretha Codner in her blue dress, needed to find a minimizer bra before Simon and Randy's eyes popped out of their heads. She just couldn't believe that they didn't like her voice, "because (she) was good."
Other hopefuls, whose parents have been lying to them, were Crystal Ortiz and Randy Stark. Interesting note about these two: they actually met on an Idol message board and found love....awww. And of course who could forget Joshua Boson and his rant about how Idol was fake and rigged, and how HE was going to be the next World Idol? Yeah, sure, we’ll see about that.
On the brighter side of things, there were a few positives this week. There actually is some talent in these two states. Some.
One hopeful from San Diego was Carly Smithson. Carly, who hales from Ireland, was actually picked to go to Hollywood two years ago, but had some problems with her visa and was disqualified. She is one to keep your eyes on. We predict that she will be in not only the top 24 but the top 12.
And along with Carly will be David Archuleta. He has a great voice for a 16-year-old and is cute too. The under eighteen crowd will be voting for him, along with their mothers. So, he too, has an excellent chance of gaining a spot in the top 24.
In Charleston, there wasn't a definite top 24 pick, but there were a couple that stood out.
Brother and sister Michelle and Jeffrey Lampkins both got a golden ticket. They were bringing the "Owww factor" with a snap thrown in, regardless of what the judges thought. But they were good. And Amy Flynn got a golden ticket, though she was spanked a bit by the judges for being a bit too confident. It’s hard to say if she will make it past the first few days of Hollywood, though.
We can't close South Carolina out without mentioning the birth of a baby. Contestant Oliver Highman was first in line to audition of day one, but his pregnant wife went into labor and he had to rush her to the hospital. By chance, he was able to make it in to audition at the end of day two with his newborn daughter in tow. We were beginning to think that we were going to have a repeat of last year, when Phil Stacy's wife gave birth, but sadly no. Oliver just didn't have the right stuff. Of course, it could have been because he was up all night or maybe his story was just better than his singing. We don't know. But it was a nice thing to see regardless. That was our soft, gushy, feely moment of the week.
Overall, 30 were picked from San Diego and only 23 from Charleston. Not a good representation of the south.
Next week, we travel to Omaha, Nebraska. Maybe Middle America is where our Idol is hiding. Only time will tell, and thankfully, we only have a few more weeks until we get to Hollywood!
One last note: rest in peace Heath.
Thursday, January 24, 2008
by Becky Tennant and Bethany O'Neil