AMERICAN IDOL: Orlando Auditions - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

AMERICAN IDOL: Orlando Auditions

January 20, 2010 by  

AMERICAN IDOL is such a popular show here at that I just figured everyone would be down with discussing the audition episodes. Ooops, I might have misjudged that one. But that’s not going to stop me from sharing my thoughts on the potential superstars we saw during tonight’s Orlando auditions. Plus, Kristin Chenoweth is guest judging and you know how I love me some Cheno.

Things start off with a bang. Or should I say a hang…as in hangover.  Ryan, Simon and Randy arrive in Orlando a bit late after spending a little too much time “relaxing” in Miami. I’m surprised that Seacrest allowed himself to be on camera without being buffed and polished first.

Simon paid the price for his fun by sitting through not only some treacherous auditions, but also sitting beside BFF and co-captains of the Cougar Squad, Kara and Kristin. The two became besties early in the day and their “energy” only served to extend Simon’s misery.

With the judges all set to go, I’m ready for the hideous voices, overwrought sob stories, and occasional decent singers to grace my screen. Oddly enough I can take two out of the three. It’s the sob stories that make me want to flush out my eyes with Windex and clean my ears with chop sticks. They’ve always been a part of IDOL, but I hit my limit last year when they packaged Danny Gokey as “the widower”. As I said yesterday, no matter how tragic, these are stories that the contestants choose to share with the IDOL producers.  They’ve seen the show, they know how the game is played.  That being said, I’m oddly more tolerant when contestants come to the table with more than their woes…if they have a voice to back it up, I can deal.

Such was the case with Seth Rollins. His video package focused on his struggles with his autistic son. Sad of course, but not relevant to a singing show. (Yes, I know I’m a complete bitch, please don’t tell me you’re just figuring this out now!) Anyway, any reservations I had about Seth went away when he performed his rendition of “Someone to Watch Over Me”. His voice was smooth and controlled, and despite a few pitch problems, he was worthy of going through to Hollywood. I can’t see him going far in the competition, but Hollywood…sure.

With the first audition of the night, Theo Glinton, a superhero cosmetologist, came all dolled up for the audition complete with mirrors glued to his face. Unfortunately his vocals didn’t have as much pizazz….is that the right word here? Pizazz?

Jermaine Purifoy had auditioned in the past but didn’t make it the La La Land. But he wasn’t bitter. In fact he acknowledged that he wasn’t prepared. But this season he’s back and he delivered a simple, beautiful version of Charlie Chaplin’s “Smile”. That just happens to be one of my favorite songs of all time so I couldn’t help but get the chills when he sang it so beautifully. Kristin and Kara praised the purity of his voice. Randy said it was his favorite audition yet this season. And Simon said he picked the right song…and the chicks will like him.  You are correct sir, we do like him.

You had to hope that Shelby Dressel would make it through. If not, then why bother saving her for last and showcasing her issues with her face paralysis. While I thought she had a pleasant enough voice, I didn’t think she was Hollywood Week material. Her voice was a bit too shrill for my liking.

At the half way point we find out that 18 contestants from Day 1 made it through. You know how many we saw? Three.  Come on. Three out of 18? Why am I watching this show.  And by that I mean…bring on Day 2.

We were Cheno-less on Day 2. Kara must have been sad.

It felt like the second coming of Blake Lewis when beat boxer Jay Stone entered the room. His rendition of The Beatles “Come Together” was too heavy on the beat box and showed absolutely no vocal ability at all. Blake didn’t make that mistake. He knew how to combine the two nicely. However, when Jay sang a straight forward version of “Ain’t No Sunshine When She’s Gone” I thought he had a decent enough voice.  That combined with his unique skills should have got him an automatic pass to H-Wood. Kara was on board, but Simon was not. It came down to Randy and he was swayed by a human drumroll and Kara’s incessant whining.

Janell Wheeler showcased her old fashion but beautiful voice. Brittany Star Jones was born to be a performer.I have to wonder if she added the ‘Britney’ later in life so she didn’t have to go through life as ‘Starr Jones’. Despite her name, or maybe because of it, she went through to Hollywood. Kasi Bedford didn’t have vocals to move forward but the judges liked her “bubbly vibe” and “cuteness”. Huh. Ok.

Cornelius Edwards made it through to Hollywood on his “merits”. Having only sung one verse of Tina Turner’s “Proud Mary” Cornelius dove into a full leg split reminiscent of the move Andy Bernard made at the dance party the night before Jim and Pam’s wedding on THE OFFICE. The boy done split his pants. How he could even talk after how hard he landed on his “merits” was beyond me. But it was the quickest ‘yes’ Simon has ever given.

The best part of Cornelius’s audition happened after he left the room. While his family was celebrating, Seacrest picks up one of the little kids who clearly wanted nothing to do with the host. HILARIOUS! (“I’m not Webster. Put me down, son!”)

Bernadette and Amanda Desimone were singing sisters straight out of the classy side of Jersey. They were wildly self indulgent and annoying, but somehow they got through. I just don’t get these judges sometimes.

If I didn’t think they Jersey girls could sing, then imagine how my ears were bleeding when Jarrod Norrell broke into “Amazing Grace”. He claims he was giving it up to God. I think God asked for the gift receipt and gave it right back. But shrill vocals was the least of Jarrod’s issues. After being rebuffed by the judges Jarrod pulled the Energizer Bunny routine and kept on singing until security escorted him out. Is this the first time someone auditioning left in handcuffs? Yikes.

Form handcuffs to a convicted felon. Matt Lawrence spent four years in jail after he robbed a bank with a BB gun at the age of 15. Now at 25, he seems to have his life back on track and is looking to move forward. What’s that? A sob story that I didn’t hate? Yup. The difference here is that I didn’t see Matt looking to gain our sympathy with his story. He actually had more to lose by putting it out there this early.  I liked that. I also liked his rendition of “Trouble” by Ray LaMontagne. (Appropriate choice of song, don’t you think?) It showed off his voice well but also who he could be as an artist.  Very impressive.

31 contestants made it through to Hollywood from the Orlando auditions. A big step up over Chicago. Next week the show is heading home to L.A. where guest judges included Katy Perry and Avril Lavinge. Oh boy.

Are you excited about any of the contestants who made it through to Hollywood? Do you think any of them has the talent to make it to the real competition? Highlight and low-lights from tonight’s episode? It’s all yours.


One Response to “AMERICAN IDOL: Orlando Auditions”

  1. Michele on January 21st, 2010 8:14 am

    We rewound Seacrest picking up that kid at least three times. Hilarious! Other than that I just consider the audition rounds background noise. I have no patience at all for the stupid folk – I’m just ready to bring on the singing! Loved Smile and Trouble though….