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American Idol 9, Jan. 27 – Lady Marmalade Is Back!


The guest judges last night weren’t overly impressive, or at least Avril Lavigne wasn’t. Katy Perry seemed to hold her own and wasn’t just going to pass everyone through. It’ll be interesting to see how Joe Jonas and Neil Patrick Harris do tonight in Dallas. I’m putting my money on the Emmys host.

The first day, it’s Neil joining Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson, and Kara DioGuardi at the judges’ table. First up to audition is a Julie Kevelighan, 28, a college student, Forth Worth, who sang Lady Marmalade in Dallas in season one. It didn’t go well. She’s changed her look some … for the better. .She prepared for today by taking choir and acting classes. Neil welcomes “Sparkle” to the auditions. She sets her “This is my year” sign down and sings Black Velvet.

Julie has improved, I’ll give her that, but it’s just not enough. Neil says his first problem is her sign where the letters got too small at the end, and he thinks she probably wanted to start over. Vocally, it wasn’t strong. Simon thinks she missed the word “NOT’ from her sign declaring that this is (not) her year. He tells her the whole thing, outfit, song, etc., was wrong. Julie launches into Over the Rainbow and is begged to stop. With four noes, she starts singing again. She’s escorted out be security, as Neil calls her annoying. She thinks her problem was that she should have taken a deep breath before beginning to sing. Perhaps she should have gotten rid of her choir teacher who is letting her think she’s ready for this.

Lloyd Thomas, 29, a Dock worker, Dallas, says the worst part about his job is the job that he has. I guess he needs a job being the reigning American Idol. He shows a picture of his two lovey daughters. He was born and raised in the projects with guns and drugs everywhere, and now has a family of his own. He doesn’t want his kids to know what it’s like to experience those things and wants them to know they can do anything.

Singing Overjoyed, Lloyd is quite good, just needing a little help with his phrasing. What Kara loves about this is that he’s a dock worker, but has this voice. She loves that this show lets him come and do that. Neil thinks he has a wonderful voice, but wants to see him be as flashy as he is as a person when he sings. Randy likes his vibe with his positivity, and for Simon, it’s his favorite audition of the day. He tells Simon to get out of here and tells him he should leave right now. With four yeses, he’s in, and Simon’s staying. Lloyd is tasting the taste of victory right now and says it’s delicious.

Neil and Simon don’t seem to be getting along, disagreeing on many of the auditioners. Kimberly Carver, 26, a school teacher, Denton, TX, is singing an original song. She sounds like she’s meant for musical theater to me. Randy tells her it doesn’t matter if the song was original, as she can blow. Simon doesn’t see anything current or interesting in her as a performer, and Neil disagrees, thinking she’s really great.

Simon tells the other judges under normal circumstances they wouldn’t be interested, but Kara thinks she would be. He figures only if it were Jazz TV. With Randy, Neil, and Kara saying yes and Simon no, Kimberly is in like flint. She thanks God Neil was on the panel and saved her and wants to now go back and watch Doogie Howser. That’s hard to find. Why not just watch How I Met Your Mother?

Dexter Ward, 20, unemployed, Terrell, TX, says the show is over because he is the next American Idol. He’s just being honest. He wants to let the game begin as he annoyingly winks at the camera repeatedly. He sings If I Ever Fall In Love Again, and it isn’t good at all, but his movements say it is. Not so much the voice. Randy tells Dexter that it looked like it hurt. Dexter wants to sing something else, but Simon tells him it won’t help. Neil tells him it wasn’t the best audition, and Randy wants him to know singing isn’t his thing. He gets four noes and is dismissed, yet Simon wants Dexter to know his smile will take him far in life.

Neil talks to Ryan during a break, saying he’s surprised at the amount of talent in the auditions, as he would have thought it would be mostly noes, yet they’ve sent quite a few people on to Hollywood. Neil doesn’t feel bad having to be honest with them, because they “get reemed out every week on this show,” so if they can’t handle this, that stuff is “the broiler.”

Erica Rhodes, 23, a grad student, Irving, TX, has been acting since she was little and was once a kid on Barney & Friends. She wants to show everyone she’s grown up since then. She’s wearing gloves which she says is part of her performance, and once she walks in, she’s in black leather and carrying a whip. The judges ask her to do a little bit of the Barney song, which just seems odd with the leather and whip.


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