Have we met this year’s American Idol yet? If not, we only have one more city of auditions to do so. St. Louis is the last of the auditions, meaning, if we don’t meet the winner here, it was one of the other warblers we were already introduced to. Who do you think it will be? Any early guesses? Or would you rather wait and see what St. Louis has to offer?
Interestingly, before the auditions begin, the show reminisces a little bit, taking us back to season four in Oklahoma where we first met Carrie Underwood … on her tractor. She went to St. Louis to audition. They ask us if we’re glad she made the trip, and I think that’s a rhetorical question, as they also show all the awards, albums, and appearances she’s done since winning the crown.
Walter the taxi driver drives around, talking about the congestion the audtions has created. He read about it awhile back, that this was going to happen. He figures auditioning beats the hell out of working. Yeah. That is, in case your job is writing about the other people who are auditioning.
The first contestant up is Johnny Keyser, 22, a server from Pompano Beach, FL, who has lived with his dad since his parents divorced when he was three. He thinks he’s a good mom and dad, as his dad has to admit he does make a mean PB&J. They go out on the boat together, and sometimes they’re more like brothers. He sings A Change Is Gonna Come, and it’s apparent his dad has raised a very good singer.
Jennifer Lopez has to interrupt the song to ask how old Johnny is and what he’s doing right now. She asks if he knows he’s going to be a star, then tells him to keep singing. Steven Tyler asks what he thinks when he sees the show, and Johnny admits he thinks he can do that. There’s no sense in drawing it out. He’s going to Hollywood. He just might be my favorite so far. J-Lo thinks he’s sexy. Take THAT Marc Anthony.
It’s more reminiscing. Not only were we treated to reliving Carrie’s audition at the beginning of the show, but now we get to do the same with William Hung, the Statue of Liberty guy, and more. This leads into a silent movie treatment of tonight’s auditioners who are better seen than heard. This includes David Coleman, 28, a seminary student from St. Louis Park, MN. What makes it very amusing is the sub-titles they use. They’re very formal sounding, except for adding in Dawg to Randy and Baby to J-Lo. Amusingly, the editors choose to un-mute and add color to Steven’s “What the …”
How can this be? In a collage of auditioners who Ryan Seacrest claims all have a story to tell, one girl says her parents auditioned in season 4. What? I have to do the math to figure this out. That was seven years ago. Technically, they could have been 29 then, meaning they’re now 36. If she’s 15 or 16, that would mean they were 20 or 21 when she was born. Alright, it could happen. It has to be the first multi-generational auditioner.
Rachelle Lamb, 26, in the construction industry in Mountain View, MO, is doing the show for her daughter and herself. She’s going through a divorce and feels her husband held her back from her dreams. There seems to be a theme of that this season. She wants to show her daughter to not let anyone hold her back, and wants her to know she should always chase her dream, as “Mommy will always be behind you.” She walks in for the audition with her daughter Maddy holding her hand. I do believe Steven even has a way with the really, really young ladies.
Rachelle sings Find Somebody New, a song her husband didn’t like, and her daughter jams along with her doing a little country dance. Mommy sings pretty good. Steven thinks she sings great and has a great sense of melody. He also enjoys her moxie. J-Lo appreciates her energy and passion, and Randy is impressed, telling Maddy that Mommy is good. It’s three yeses for Maddy and Mommy going to Hollywood.
Walter is still driving around discussing the show, as he mentions it’s just 20,000 people with good pipes. Oliver McCrary, 27, a musician from Minneapolis, MN, is not one of the 20,000. Apparently he had said somewhere in his notes “music is my wife.” Randy thinks his wife will be looking for a divorce. After more bad auditions, the judges hold hands and try to channel some good energy.
Reis Kloeckener, 20, a student/pizza maker from St. Louis, mentions it was difficult for him growing up in high school, as he was pushed around and bullied. He came from a small Lutheran school into this huge public school, and was so small and young that people thought they could take advantage of him. He debated dropping out, and was singing in the hallway when a teacher told him to try out for choir. He did and found friends, support, and confidence.