About LauraBelle

Freelance entertainment writer, martial arts instructor, and mother of two.

American Idol, January 30th – The Sligh One and the Sad Story


Victoria Watson, 18, of Gainesville, Florida, says she’s been growing her hair her entire life and it’s now six feet long, and when she’s not wearing heels it drags about four inches on the ground, causing her to step on it. Her mom has been growing her hair since she was 29, and she thinks she looks beautiful. Hey, I’m a long hair gal myself and had it down to my butt in high school, but I grew up at 18 and cut it. It was time to be an adult and realize that’s not a look for adult women, and to create a personality beyond my hair.

But enough about me. Victoria says most people say she sounds like a Disney character, like Ariel or Cinderella. She’s praying Simon will be really nice. Walking in, Randy remarks on her hair, of course, calling it a conversation piece. Again, time to create her own personality. Simon wants to get past that, and asks why she’s there. Victoria tells him she thinks she’d be a good role model, and thinks she could touch people’s hearts with her music, and help uplift them when they need it most. He calls her a genuinely nice person, and is right. She’s asked to bring her mother in, and the judges have to remark on the obvious family trait. Victoria sings Josh Groban’s You Raise Me Up, and sounds somewhat operatic, making me understand the Ariel/Cinderella comments. Simon remarks it was a daughter to mom audition, meaning she was the only one that would like it a lot. He and Randy pass on Victoria, and she walks out and falls into the arms of a man who is most likely her father.

Lakia Hill, 20, of Birmingham, says she’s been told she has what it takes to be the next American Idol, with the total package and voice. She believes she is everything the judges are looking for. She sings Deborah Cox’s How Did You Get Here and has a horribly squeaky tone. Simon asks her, “What the hell was that?” He says it was a complete and utter mess, but Lakia rebuts that people say she can sing. Simon asks what she hears when she listens to herself sing, and she believes she hears a good singer. She is told she was one of the worst voices they had in Birmingham, and replies thank you, which Ryan chalks up as Southern manners.

Nichole Gatzman, 17, of Muskogee, Oklahoma, is at the audition with a whole group of people all wearing Team Nichole shirts. When she was in a pageant and wanted to sing for her talent, her mom couldn’t believe she could sing. She sang a song from her preschool class that she knew, and everyone said she could sing. Today, it’s a little different than a preschool tune, Something to Talk About by Bonnie Raitt, and Simon calls her very old-fashioned as she sings through her nose. Randy tells her she’s really young, and he thinks she needs a lot more work if she really wants this. He urges her to come back again. She walks out and is hugged by her mom who has an “I told you so” look on her face.

Brandy Patterson, 28, of Birmingham, believes she is the next American Idol, and says when she first walks in the judges are going to think, “Where have you been? We’ve been waiting on you!” Simon notes that it says in her bio she is the only person in her family born to be a star, and she says she’s actually the only person that has the nerves to do it. She sings Madonna’s Like a Virgin, and sings horribly off key, and dances without any rhythm. Simon thanks her for an absolutely rotten audition, and says everything about it was wrong. She doesn’t believe him, and he says he likes her, but he is so right he cannot tell her.

After Brandy blames the floor, Simon tells her to try it on the carpet. As she walks over to the carpeted area, Simon says under his breath, “You are barking mad, aren’t you?” Proud Mary on carpet is no better than Like a Virgin on wood. Simon deadpans it was a massive difference, and he takes back everything he said. How anyone else has sung on the floor is beyond him. Regaining his composure, he says they are now in agreement as both were horrible. He and Brandy embark in a verbal sparring thing, with him calling it rubbish, and her saying, “Ruffish, Smuffish.” As she walks out, he blows her a kiss and tells her to call him. She says she doesn’t want to, and it turns into yes you do, no I don’t, yes you do, etc.

She walks out to talk to Ryan and Simon comes out as well, and they keep their sparring going. Randy walks out, and she calls him a faker. Simon shouts out to her to call him. She says she doesn’t know what they’re looking for, and he says it’s not her. He then does what all the contestants keep doing, by trying to go through the locked door, and she immediately makes a crack about that. The funny thing is she isn’t upset, and appears to enjoy the arguing. I think Simon picked up on it and is just having fun with her, since he doesn’t have Paula to play with today.

Twenty people in all made it through Birmingham, and tomorrow is Los Angeles, the Rose Bowl. I don’t know if you can beat the fun of today, though. There was no one that was shockingly good, but the people that made it through all had great personalities and will be a lot of fun. The people that didn’t make it didn’t get indignant, yet we still had the outrageousness. It was an entertaining hour, to be sure. More than anyone else, I’m looking forward to hearing more from Chris Sligh.

Thoughts about Idol you need to get off your chest? Email me at LauraBelle@realityshack.com.

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