Category Archives: Talent

American Idol, Feb. 28 – “So Much Variety Already With So Many Flavors”

American Idol, Feb. 28 – “So Much Variety Already With So Many Flavors”The thirteen men semi-finalists will perform live for the first time tonight on American Idol, and I have to say off the top of my head, I can’t think of any of them that I think doesn’t belong there. However, I also can’t remember them all, and sometimes what’s even worse than doing badly on American Idol is not being memorable enough.

Ryan Seacrest welcomes us to the new set and welcomes the house band as well. He explains how this will work this season. After the guys perform tonight, and the girls tomorrow, on Thursday, they’ll announce the five guys and five girls who get the most votes. Each judge will then get one wild card pick which will round out the top 13. Wow. That means half of the semi-finalists won’t go any further than this week. I hope they made good song choices. And let’s not forget, we don’t know which guy the judges decided to bring back, but I think the heavy favorite has to be Jermaine Jones, as they seemed to feel so badly saying goodbye to him.

The contestants each took a camera to their home to show us more of who they are, and we start these visits out in Wisconsin, Reed Grimm’s home. He shows his backyard, and says his town of Ellsworth is famous for their cheese curds. I’m from Chicago, and have to say when I go to Wisconsin, I love me some cheese curds. He also shows off his two nieces he helps care for. This will change his life, because he won’t be spending every day changing dirty diapers. He hopes to work America into a frenzy.

Reed sings Moves Like Jagger, and turns the song very jazzy. It doesn’t seem right, but he’s somehow compelling. He also fits in a drum solo in the middle of it, something he became known for in Hollywood. I’m not loving the song choice, but I’m so captivated by him.

Randy Jackson is glad it was Reed who was bold enough to start off season 11. He feels this is a good choice and compares him to Sheila E. on the drums and liked the scatting too, comparing him to Casey Abrams again. Jennifer Lopez explains everyone knows the song so well, and this made it a great way to show America who they are dealing with, a guy who is musical and has an amazing voice. Steven Tyler also loved the jazz. He loves Reed’s voice and that he can do anything with it, as well as the shuffles in his step.

Adam Brock is 27 and from Washington, Pennsylvania. He shows off his home and his family, that includes his wife, daughter, and dog. He cooks dinner, sings, plays piano, etc., and says he’s always been known as the jack of all trades, master of none, but is hoping American Idol changes all that. He’s been told there’s a large black woman trapped inside his body and wants to show America what white chocolate is.

Singing Think, Adam isn’t doing enough different with it than what we’ve seen on this stage. He’s good; there’s no doubt about it, but I don’t know if he’s different enough for us to remember and vote for him. And for all the soul he promised us, I think there’s room for more.

Steven loves that Adam has his own name of White Chocolate, and thinks he was setting the bar and the precedent right out of the box. He thinks the talent is so good this year, that it’s hard to make a comment about anything. J-Lo loved his big finish, and feels it’s what he needs to do because of all the other standout voices we’ll hear tonight. He definitely delivered at the end for her. Randy loved the whole kind of throwback vibe, with the 70s/blue-eyed/soul thing with the white chocolate. Randy also notices Adam is rocking a Pittsburgh Steeler towel in his back pocket.

Deandre Brackensick is still in high school in San Jose. He takes the camera to his sociology class and his home to see his mom, dad, and sister. His sister is one of his biggest fans and his best friend. He thinks she gets her big personality from him, as he used to act a fool a lot. Mixed in with the footage he shot is some footage shot of him at a much younger age dancing around to 76 Trombones.

Deandre chooses to sing Reason and sings nearly the whole thing in falsetto. I’m not thrilled with that overall, but he does some really good things with the songs. He sings much older than he really is. High school students shouldn’t sound like that.

Jennifer almost can’t talk because of all the cheering, then she can’t talk because Steven interrupts her to air his thoughts. He did that last time, when she was getting ready to talk, and now this time she asked Randy if she should go, and he said yes, and she said “Deandre” twice, then Steven jumped in. He tells him “I told you that was going to happen.” It’s good for him for picking a song that shows off his voice.

Jennifer finally gets in there and says his voice is so perfect to her. Every note, when he goes high or rests in the middle, makes her so happy. He didn’t make the top 24 last year and she prayed he would come back this year. She knows it will be an amazing year for him. Randy tells him he is one of the most commercial guys he’s seen. Out of the box, he’s ready to go now. He’s so unique, so different with his voice. He has the falsetto, then saves the big chest note for the end. He’s pulling for him. After all that, I think even if the voters don’t put him through, one of the judges will.

Colton Dixon, 20, of Murpheesboro, TN, had a unique opportunity to be with his sister both last year and this year. There are deer that end up in his back yard occasionally, and he’s sure Skylar Laine would love to shoot them. He shows off the room where he writes a lot of his stuff. A lot of people have been asking how he does his hair. It grows so fast and he thinks it just has a mind of his own. People are used to seeing him on the piano, but he’s going to do something a little different tonight.

Well, Colton is at the piano again anyway singing Decode, but only in the beginning as he walks away from the piano. He sounds a bit shaky at first, but he completely hits it. He jumps up on the piano, dancing a little bit up there. He somewhat reminds me a little of a James Durbin tonight.

Randy, without an interruption from Steven, is happy that Colton came back. It’s time for Idol to have their own indie alternative rocker singing like Paramore. He loved it and didn’t know he could perform like that. He loves that the show has so much variety already with so many flavors. Jennifer started feeling his heart, and that’s what she lvoes the most about him and what she looks forward to America feeling from him, that he sings from his heart. He’s a relevant artist and she can hear him on the radio now. Steven doesn’t think he had a chance to show his true talent last year, but did tonight. At the piano and up dancing, he truly is a relevant artist today.

American Idol, Feb. 23 – Shooting for the Moon

There aren’t too many spots left in the Top 24 of American Idol season 11, yet there are still some big names waiting to hear the news if they made it or not. It was a shock to see Lauren Gray not make it through. I’m guessing they saved at least one big name that didn’t make it through for today. There is bound to be another shock, and I’m bracing for it.

We pick up where we left off last night, with Adam Brock waiting to hear whether he made it or not. It seems the judges are just blowing smoke up his butt and that he’ll be moving on. But the poor guy is being tortured. He says he was looking at a picture of his daughter, and remembering being asked if he took time, money, and resources out of the picture, what he would do. He barely chokes out his answer, “sing.”

Randy Jackson can feel the joy coming from him. Adam says it’s where his joy comes from and how he knows God loves him. Steven Tyler loves to watch a man cry and hates to do this, but Adam is going to have a beautiful life, as he’s going on through. Jennifer Lopez is in tears too. He shows them a picture on his phone of his daughter, and skips on out of there. It starts on a good note. I’ve got Jennifer’s goosebumps.

Next up is Jeremy Rosado. He’s had a group of other young contestants he’s been close to since Hollywood. It’s been amazing to him to have such a tight relationship and family here. In Hollywood he sang Angel, and sang I Know You Won’t for his final performance. J-Lo grabs Steven’s arms as they listen to his ending notes. He’s been dreaming of this since he was 10 years old.

Facing his judgement, J-Lo tells Jeremy they watched him very vividly in Hollywood, and every time she’d look over at other contestants, he’d be giving the standing Os and cheering the others on. She calls him a nice kid. All of who he is came out when he sang his final performance. There’s no way they wouldn’t want him in the top 24. It’s unanimous. He asks if they’re sure.

Shannon Magrane is worried about blowing her lyrics on group night, but knows her rendition of What a Wonderful World saved her butt. For her final performance, Shannon sang The Trouble With Love Is, and gave Jennifer her goosebumps. She hopes the judges find her worthy. Her dad admits everyone told him to ring Steven’s neck for his remark about her at her audition, that she was “Hot, humid, and happenin’.”

Shannon finds the walk down here a little longer than she’d figured it would be. Steven points to a video of her and asks if she can make it to the end. Without an answer, Steven continues, saying they still had to cut down to 24. He’s not going to draw it out, he thought she was an American Idol to begin with. She’s going through. She celebrates and hugs Steven, towering over him in her heels. Steven wonders if her daddy still hates him.

Scott Dangerfield originally made it to Hollywood last year, but had to pull out of competition. He returned this year and made it to Hollywood again. He sang Folsum Prison Blues for his final performance. He’s hoping the judges saw something in him that they want to put on stage for America to see. He’s nervous, but happy, with his performance, and knows there’s stuff he needs to work on. J-Lo tells him it’s no secret she’s been a fan of his since last year. She was so excited to see him again, but she never felt that same thing she felt the first time. But, she’s a fan, and he is of all three of them. Unfortunately, he didn’t make it this time, though.

After others are cut as well, Skylar Lane gets ready to face the judges. She’s not sure about her chances after seeing Chelsea Sorrell make it. She doesn’t think they’ll put two female country singers through. She’s one of them who was stricken by the Hollywood flu bug, but she recovered to stay in the competition. For her final performance, Skylar sang Fancy, and completely throws it out there.

Steven compliments Skylar on her dress, and Randy notes she’s been consistent since day one. They call her a young Reba, which seems to either shock her or upset her. Her final performance is the route she wants to go. Apparently that’s what the judges think she should do too, as she made it through. She wants to jump up and down but knows her mama would kill her. Steven wants her to bring him some crawfish, but she knows that’s more Randy’s territory.

Hallie Day made it through and is so pumped. Chase Likens makes it too and couldn’t be smiling any wider. J-Lo fought for Aaron Marcellus last year, and fought hard again, and this time she won.

Deandre Brackensick heard no last year, but thinks he’s ready this year. He thrilled them with his falsetto in Vegas, as well as in his final performance, This Woman’s Work. The judges seemed to love it and feel it in their soul, as J-Lo says she’d been dying to her him sing that song since she met him. At his final judgement she tells him his confidence and voice has grown. They’d be crazy people not to ask him to be in the top 24. He’s in.

Jermaine Jones is very close with his mom, admitting he’s a Mama’s Boy. She has now flown out here to be with him. He’s kind of nervous and is hoping everything he did altogether was enough. For his final performance, he sang I Believe in You and Me. After all this waiting, he has seen great people go home, and it’s eating away at him. He thinks he’s good enough and wants to give his mom good news.

Randy tells Jermaine he’s probably one of the most different artists they’ve had in awhile. He was great in his initial audition, then had some up and down performances. J-Lo tells him he had some real shining moments, and it’s been a joy for them to watch him. Randy thinks he’s talented, but that he needs a little more work, so he didn’t make it. He cries, and they seem to be doing everything they can to not cry with him. He tells his mom he’s still great. Steven says he thought he became a singer in this business to break people’s hearts in a good way.

There is one girl’s spot left, and three teenage girls, Ariel Sprague, Shelby Tweten, and Hollie Cavanagh. Shelby has always felt the more pressure she was under the better she did. The judges thought Ariel had potential, but might not be ready, from her first audition. Holly sang Change in her final audition, and Randy called it “so good.” Randy tells them to give themselves a big hand for making it this far with all the talent they’ve seen. Steven tells Hollie she’s going through. The other two are going home. All hug each other, Hollie hugs Ariel and tells her, “You’re so talented; I love you.” It’s terrible watching these three walk out and greet their parents as one delivers good news, and the others sad news.

Now, for the one guy’s spot that’s left. There are two teenage guys, David Leathers Jr. and Eben Franckenwitz. David has been a hit with the ladies and judges since his first audition, and Eben was just as confident, but more quiet. They were in the same group on group night, and by Vegas, Eben had somehow borrowed some of David’s swagger. David sang more MIchael Jackson, while Eben sang You Are So Beautiful in their final performances. I like both, but if I have to pick, I think it would be Eben. David calls it an overwhelming feeling to be in this position. Eben wants to sing for the rest of his life and calls this really stressful.

The two boys sit for their final judgement. Ryan Seacrest points out that David has two more years of maturity and experience over Eben. They admit to becoming pretty good friends after Randy asks if they’ve bonded. David calls this one of the greatest things he’s done, and asks who else can say they met the three judges. Eben agrees it’s life-changing, and that he would rather be no other place.

Jennifer tells David he had an amazing first audition, then it got a little rocky, and Steven thinks they both have stuff to work on, one overconfident, the other under-confident. David didn’t make it, and Eben is going through. David is told to work harder and come back. Eben celebrates behind David on the way out. David knows Eben is a great guy and that he deserves it. He’s definitely going to come back next year.

But wait. The judges pulled a Simon Cowell move and felt compelled to reinstate another guy to make a guy’s top 13. It’s either Jermaine Jones, Richie Law, Johnny Keyser, or David Leathers Jr., and we’ll find out next week. Wow, I could see it being Jermaine or David, based on tonight, and probably Jermaine based on their reaction after they said goodbye to him, but it it could easily go to David. Simon made a last minute change, and Melanie Amaro went on to win The X-Factor.

As the audition season officially wraps up, Steven celebrates by stripping down to his underwear, mooning the camera, and jumping into the fountain pool behind them. Might I say he runs like an old man, but dives like an old man. Just saying.

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American Idol, Feb. 22 – “Bozos On the Bus”

Tonight we start finding out who the final 24 are, and which favorites were cut, on American Idol. We’re finally done with all these extra performances. Oops, not yet. They’ll still perform one more time for the judges tonight, but I don’t know if it will really make that much of a difference, as they probably already have their minds made up, and with the ones they haven’t decided on, this probably won’t make too much of a difference. I’m not really understanding the point. It’s like they’re just being used as trained seals this season.

The final forty-two contestants gathered in Las Vegas and got to see a performance of Le Reve The Dream. The singers then performed one more time for Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez, and Randy Jackson. This stage of the program was difficult for Jennifer last year as she found out how hard it was to say goodbye to people she’d bonded with. Will watching them perform again really help her with that at all? With those performances done, they’ll face the judges to hear their fate.

Up to see the judges first is Jen Hirsch. I think she’s a lock. It’s been a long road for her after her first audition in Galveston. Randy called her a pro even back then. Hollywood week was amazing, and her favorite time was her solo of Georgia On My Mind. It was her first Standing O. Each round has gotten more specific, with the cuts being about little details. It’s not about being a good singer anymore. For her final performance, she sang Baby I Love You, and Randy thought it was okay and that they’d seen her better. He wants her to loosen up. Right now she doesn’t know where she stands.

Facing the judges tonight, Randy tells Jen she’s had an amazing journey, but now it’s about being the best of the best of the best. They’re looking for the cream of the crop talent. Jennifer adds after this it’s not up to them, but America. Steven is asked what he thinks about Jen and says, “It’s not easy,” and that completely freaks her out. Randy shakes his head, then tells her she made it and is one of the best singers this year. Steven asks Randy if he had to string that out so long.

Next up is Creighton Fraker, who was with Jen in two group auditions. He’s currently a starving artist, and sang a stunning version of What a Wonderful World in Hollywood, garnering a judges’ Standing O. He contributes his sound to being adopted and growing up singing church music, though he always had that rock-n-roll thing going on, which he now attributes to his birth father, the lead singer of a heavy metal band, Flotsam and Jetsam. When he sang New York State of Mind for his final performance, his dad was right there with him. He doesn’t want to be another artist, just Creighton.

Creighton is more nervous than ever meeting with the judges. Jennifer talks to him about everybody being a little different, and everybody having something special. It comes down to who they think has been the most consistent and has that special something to touch America. They think he has a chance of doing that, so he’s in the top 24. His family, especially his dad, is stoked. He always hoped he’d have a part in Creighton’s life and can’t wait for the rest of his career to start.

Lauren Gray has been wondering if she was good enough to move on. Getting through would mean everything to her and her dad. He’d been trying his whole life to make it and never did. The judges loved her when she auditioned in St. Louis. She then had troubles in Vegas, but made it through, despite a hoarse voice. That showed her she was strong enough to be here. For this last performance, she sang I’d Rather Go Blind, still sounding slightly hoarse. She wants this really badly.

Randy talks to Lauren about it being a tough time for them and their least favorite day, as they’ve all become part of their family. As the competition went from Hollywood week on, it just got a little more difficult for her. She thinks it was because she just didn’t want to disappoint them. She’s starting to cry, thinking she didn’t make it, but I think they’re faking her out. Randy thinks she’s disappointing herself more, but she feels blessed to have met them. He wants her to believe … she does not make it. Wow, no fake out. But he wants her to believe in herself and come back. She will consider it.

Steven says they fell in love with Lauren, and that’s the thing about all the kids. They fell in love with them. Worse yet for Lauren, there are no family and friends to greet her. She knows what Randy said is true, and that she needs to believe in herself more. In her heart, she’s not sure if she’ll ever come back, but maybe it will happen for her some other way.

Preacher’s son Joshua Ledet is definitely worried about his chances. He proved himself in his audition, and again in the Hollywood group round. For his final performance, he sang Up to the Mountain. American Idol could change his life, and he doesn’t know if people know what that feels like. Steven asks if his face is that of one who gave it up completely. He thinks he did. Randy tells him sometimes in these things the better singers don’t make it. This season’s tough, but he made it. He holds a mini revival meeting there on the stage.

Blaire Sieber and Naomi Gillies find out they don’t make it, and Naomi is a little shocked to have it all end here.

Hailey Johnson recalls the whole journey being intimidating for her. She didn’t feel she had the confidence to say she was a star, but she got stronger through each round, until her strongest in Vegas where she began to shine. A few months ago she was a college student, but could now be top 24 of American Idol. Jennifer tells her about the crazy arguments they get in over who to keep. Hailey says her biggest goal was to break out of her shyness, and it’s made her have more faith in herself as a performer. Randy says she has to believe, and Steven mentions she needs that one piece that’s missing. She might find it, as she’s going through.

Neco Starr was called a star by J-Lo in Hollywood. For his final performance he sang Lady In My Life. Now the world will get a chance to see who Neco Starr is, and for now, all he can say is he’s ready. Jennifer tells him that so many good singers this year spoils them, but means they have to look at not just the great voices, but also if they’re ready. Randy mentions his age of 20 and tells him he didn’t make it, as Jennifer explains they think he needs a little more time. I guess we won’t be getting a chance to see who Neco Starr is.

Also not making it is Clayton Farhat. He says it sucks, but he has a lot to be proud of to make it this far. Jennifer felt tremendous growth from River St. James, and loves that he was so focused on what type of artist he was, but unfortunately, he didn’t make it either. Caleb Johnson fell apart in his final performance, forgetting the lyrics, then asked to start over, saying he thinks he messed up. He did, as he didn’t make it either. Maybe these final performances do matter some.

Elise Testone is 28, meaning this is her last shot at this. She’s worked really hard, “gigging out constantly,” sometimes doing ten shows a week. This is the best opportunity for her and everything she’s worked for. She sang It’s a Man’s Man’s World for her final performance. She’s praying to move on and feels it in her heart that it’s her time. It’s more than the notes and she’s trying to convey every emotion. She feels like she’s letting go. Randy tells her they’ve had some amazing singers, and it’s tough. Jennifer tells her she made it. They thinks she’s one of the best they’ve seen.

The Voice, Feb. 20th – Sometimes, I Want a Sandwich Edition.

It’s time for The Voice, Blind auditions, part 4.  The Blake Shelton, Adam Levine, Cee Lo Green and Christina Aguilera are still building their teams, but as they do, each coach will probably get a bit stingier with their button pushing.

We start out the night with another first name only singer.  This time, he’s name is Ducky. Neither Daffy nor Donald Duck ever had a moustache quite that cool. I can’t help but wonder what the story is behind that name.  I assume that he’s hoping that it’s duck season, and not rabbit season.

Ducky’s a painter as well as a singer. Not a bad one either, from what we’re shown.  We’re also shown Ducky’s girlfriend who doesn’t give a name, but she may be Pebbles Flintstone, grown up. Ducky waddles on stage and launches into Tighten Up.

No one is turning, and Christina seems to be telling Adam to turn, who’s thinking but not hitting his button.  Uh oh, I saw Cee Lo shake his head.

No one turns.

Cee Lo: We’re all definitely looking for the best.

Christina: We all wished we turned around.

Adam: That’s a kickass moustache.

Blake: Is that a throwback to Doc Holiday?

Oh well, it is a kickass moustache, but I guess he’s the lame duck of the night.

We then meet Janathas and his family, including his adorable kids, and hear how he learned to speak English when he came to America as a 5-year-old little boy by singing music.  He takes the stage and performs U Got It Bad.

Christina smiles, and there’s some back-and-forth talk. Adam is nodding and the crowd loves Jonathas.  Cee Lo swings around followed by Christina.

Cee Lo: I thought that was a prank. I thought that was actually us.

Christina: The ladies love Jonathas.

She then talks about molding and packaging. Cee Lo talks about how Christina has packages on her mind and wants a closer look at Jonathas’s watch.

Now we get the competing egos.  Cee Lo says, “I don’t like to brag, but I can do anything.”

I don’t like to brag? Has he watched this show?

Ooh, then Janathas mentions how he always had the hots for Christina, then he picks her.  Is that wise with his wife backstage? Doesn’t seem too smart to me, but she either missed that part or she’s a very forgiving woman.

We’re reminded that there aren’t many spots left as Monique Benabou is introduced to us. She walks in, arm-in-arm with her parents. Her mother is a breast cancer survivor.

The opening notes to Mr. Know It All ring out and everyone is listening intently. Adam has his head down again.  Christina is deep in consideration. Blake looks like he’s on the edge of hitting the button, but recommends Christina take her and she does.  Christina seems happy enough as she turns.

Cee Lo: She should be happy; you did a great job.

Blake: I think Christina is the best female vocalist of our generation. (Um, isn’t Miranda going to have a little issue with that? Has he heard some his wife’s songs? She’s not one I’d want to tick off.)

American Idol, Feb. 16 – J-Lo’s Goosebumps for a Stellar Top 40

Just last year, American Idolstarting sending their contestants through an extra step between Hollywood Week and the announcement of the semi-finalists. Instead of narrowing the group down in Hollywood, then narrowing them down again without the benefit of any additional knowledge, they now send them to Las Vegas to watch them perform again.

Richie Law writes on someone’s face in the bus, and she repays him by doing it on his face from behind while he sleeps. He repays her by punching her in some sort of knee-jerk reaction. One girl is so excited to see Vegas outside the window, only to find out it’s not even Vegas. Conor Dixon wants Vegas to be his moment. The groups had to get into groups of three or four, then were assigned songs from the 50s or 60s. They’ll be told if they’re on to the next round, or whether they’ll pack and head home. They’ll have the help of one of the vocal coaches.

Skylar Laine, 17, of Brandon, MS, is having a hard time working on harmonies. She couldn’t find a group, so was placed in one along with Colton Dixon, , 20, a musican/face painter from Murfreesboro, TN, Chase Likens, 20, of Point Pleasant, WV, and Cari Quoyeser, 21, a student/barista from Houston. They’ll be up first tonight singing Dedicated to the One I Love, and while we haven’t heard from Chase before tonight, I have to say I like him. This is a really good group.

Jennifer Lopez tells the group they did a really great job on the harmonies, and mentions the music from that time period was all about that, and they nailed it. Steven tells Chase that for someone who came in there singing his true love Country & Western, he was sure stretching out in a real good way. Jennifer mentions to Skylar she knows it was out of her comfort zone as well, but it seemed shaky and weak for Cari. Jennifer, Steven, and Randy Jackson confer. Cari goes home while the rest move on.

David Leathers Jr., 17, of Fayetteville, NC, Jeremy Rosado, 19, a front desk clerk from Valrico, FL, Ariel Sprague, 16, of Fayetteville, NC, and Gabi Carrubba, 17, of North Haven, CT, are all younger contestants who met each other at the Savannah auditions and have been friends since. They’re singing Rockin’ Robin. Airel explains the first night they got it they thought it was going to be easy, but it turned out to be very difficult. David says it wasn’t working the way they had it laid out originally. Vocal coach Debra Byrd calls it a train wreck. She refers to Gabi as a diva. Again, another group that sounds great. This is how great it is when everyone isn’t dealing with the flu.

Randy tells the group it was hot. While David was having pitch problems last time they heard him, this time he got it all together. Ariel continues to surprise him, and Jennifer adds in that her smile lights up the whole place. Randy throws in that Jeremy is always styling. He thinks Gabi was strong too. They are all through to the next round.

Adam Brock, 27, a creative arts director form Washington, PA, Erika Van Pelt, 26, a mobile DJ/wedding singer from South Kingston, RI, Angie Zeiderman, 25, a waitress from Delray Beach, FL, and Shelby Tweten, 17, from North Mankato, MN, sing Great Balls of Fire with Adam accompanying them on the piano himself. They, too, are strong, but Angie might be the weakest of the four.

Jennifer calls this a lot of fun. The group tells the judges it was a team effort, with all of them putting a little of themselvves into it. Jennifer can see it, thinking the whole number suited them, playing up to all of their strengths. After some deliberation, they all make it through, including Angie, after they make her wait it out. Steven tells Angie that for a skinny little girl with no tail feathers, she sure shook ’em.

The groups are doing it all tonight, from arrangement to choreography to look. This is dressed like the Andrews Sisters, but their vocals seem not as spot on as some of the others. Schyler Dixon, 16, from Murfreesboro, IN, Brielle von Hugel, 17, from Staten Island (Hey, where’s Stage Mom?), and Molly Hunt sing Why Do Fools Fall In Love. Oddly, Molly is never shown with a solo. Of the other two, Schyler seems the weakest.

Steven says he remembers making out to that song, although he’s not sure when. Randy deliberates right away and asks for the mikes to be cut off before they even get to say much to the group. Steven tells Schyler and Brielle their vocals stood out to him, but Molly’s individual vocals were hurting. Yeah, hurting meaning absent. Was it so bad they couldn’t air it? Molly is going home, while the other two move on.

Wayne Wilson, 23, of Baltimore, MD, Ashley Robles, 26, an insurance account manager from San Diego, Stephanie Renae, 15, of Orange Park, FL, Audrey Deckline from San Clemente, Janelle Arthur from Nashville, and Tina Torres from New YOrk are also going home.

The next group found out they could change the groove of the song, so they made it a little more modern, adding a little hop to it. Ryan Seacrest points out the red lipstick on Eben’s cheeks, and they explain they wanted to pop a little red with their outfits. Reed Griim, 25, a nanny from Ellsworth, WI, Elise Testone, 28, a vocal coach/musician from Charleston, Haley Johnson, 22, a student/barista from Beaverton, OR, and Eben Franckewitz, 15, of Loveland, OH, sing The Night Has a Thousand Eyes, and they’re good, but Reed just outshines everyone, while Haley seem to be the weakest. Steven calls out Elise’s beatboxing, and Reed’s vocals as well. He asks about the kisses on Eben. They’re all going through.

The Voice, Feb. 13 – Just Pip!

We start out with the blind auditions of The Voice with a little turnabout is fair play.  This time, we’re not going to see a contestant’s face.  They don’t even tell us if it’s a guy or girl.  We hear how she (at this point I’m pretty sure it’s a she) has been offered contracts before, but only if she changed the way she looks. We see some guitar strumming as she prepares to take the stage and starts You and I. The Judges seem to like it.  Cee Lo spins, and we see Sarah Golden. Blake spins at the end.

Christina: “Thought I heard some twang.”

Blake: “Your voice is so honest.”

Cee Lo: “I want my team to represent diversity.”

Blake: “Cee Lo wants you to be an experiment, whereas I feel confident of who you are.”

(Uh Oh.)

Sarah seems unable to make up her mind, which leads to Cee Lo saying, “I only want who wants me.” (Wasn’t that a Cheap Trick song?)

Sarah: “I want you both.”

Cee Lo: “Oh you can’t handle us both, Baby.”

(Double Uh oh.) Sarah chooses Cee Lo.  (Is that a 3rd Uh Oh?  Guess we’ll have to see.) Blake starts to talk about Cee Lo Land. Sounds like a fun and colorful place.

Next up is Elley Duhe, who has been performing for some time now.  Clearly she’s got the family support.  She left school to pursue her music.

Elley launches into Mercy. The judges aren’t loving or hating it.  But no one is hitting their button. They don’t look like they’re going to, until that last note; Adam seems to have thought about it.

Adam: “That last note was just killer, and if we could go back in time, I think we’d all hit out button.”

Blake: ”You’re the sweetest girl.”

Well, Elley does seem very nice and she did handle herself exceptionally well, but now she knows not to save the best (note) for last.

So the music world gave us singers known by just one name, such as Cher and Madonna.  Now The Voice gives us Pip.

Pip? Ok, let’s see if Pip can pitch a perfect performance.

Pip thinks that having the coaches hearing him before they see him is an advantage.  Since Pip’s sporting a plaid bow tie, he may be correct.

Christina recognizes The House of the Rising Sun right away, but it’s Adam who first hits for Pip. (I’m starting to dig that name!)  Blake Pips in next. Christina, and finally Cee Lo, also pip in. Man, Pip’s really singing his bow tie off!

His Mother calls him precious Pip. How perfect.

Blake: “How would you like to be on a team with hardly any guys on it?”

We get some back and forth between Blake and Christina where Blake calls her a mother. (Uh oh again) But it’s in a nice way.

Ceee Lo: “You have an old soul.”

Adam: “It takes a real man to wear a bow tie, and your are what epitomizes the show.”

Once again, Adam reminds everyone his contestant won last year. Pip needs to pick.  His bow tie starts spinning. (No, it doesn’t but we do have a commercial break.) When we come back, Pip picks Adam.

Erin Willett is not wearing a bow tie, but she’s 22 and has a nose ring in her left nostril. Erin recently learned her father is dying of pancreatic cancer and wants her dad to see her live her dream.

I Want You Back starts, and the judges are smiling and the audience clapping, but no one is hitting the button.  Christina teases the button; Blake hits it. Christina is still thinking.  Adam is bopping.  Blake seems really happy so far that he’s the only one.  He’s actually rubbing his hands together. What is he, a super-villain?

Christina: “I was into it, but I wasn’t dazzled.”

Adam: “You are clearly an amazing singer.”

Blake: “You’re on my team, whether you like it or not.” (Way to sweet talk them, Blake!)

David Grace played college football and was also a coach. He heads to the stage, guitar in hand, to sing Sweet Home Alabama.  Christina likes the intro.  Blake looks confused.  Maybe he doesn’t recognize the song?  Well he’s singing along, but he’s not hitting his button.  Both he and Adam are hovering, but not going for it. Adam wants Blake to hit it.

They don’t turn. Why didn’t they turn?

Christina: ‘I was trying to get these two to turn around.’ (These two being Blake and Adam, I assume.)

Blake says something about dips in his singing.  (I think he said dips, and not Pips.)

David doesn’t look happy.  Can’t say that I blame him.  Cool guitar.

American Idol, Feb. 9 – Idol Bug Plagues Contestants

Hollywood week continues tonight, but first we’ll have to put up with the drama that Nigel Lythgoe left for us last night. A 16-year-old girl fell off the stage and looked to be critically injured at first glance. Obviously she made it out okay, or we would have heard about it before, so it was really shameful for Nigel to use this as cliffhanger material to get us to tune in tonight. Newsflash, Nigel. I would have tuned in anyway, but this made me second-guess that decision.

We pick up from that moment that Symone Black, 16, of Rancho Cucamonga, CA, fell off the stage. She regains consciousness, and the other contestants circle around her and join together in prayer. Nigel is with her immediately, and Randy Jackson joins the group. Steven Tyler looks down in concern, and Jennifer Lopez says Symone’s voice was one of the prettiest she heard all day. A medic asks Symone when she ate last, and she replies lunch. J-Lo joins the group surrounding Symone who is being handfed a Sprite. She leaves on her own accord, with her father. They’re on their way to the hospital to ge her checked out.

Lauren Mink, 25, a program director for adults with disabilities from Winchester, KY, is still waiting her fate, as is Jeremy Rosado, 19, a front desk clerk at a an infectious disease doctor’s office, and a germophobe, from Valrico, FL. Also in this group is Ethan Jones, 22, a musician from Pontoon Beach, IL. His dad is his fellow bandmate who is now in rehab.

Symone survives the cut in absentia, and on the way to the hospital, explains she was getting ready to answer Randy’s question when she just passed out. Lauren and Ethan are going home, while Jeremy makes it through, as does Nikko Starr. Ethan wishes he could stay, as the people are great there, but the people at home are the ones he loves. Lauren knows she is lucky to have such an awesome place and people to go back to.

There are 185 contestants moving on to group round. They will form into groups, choose a song, and create choreography surrounding a complete performance. They start out at 8:30 PM as they hear the rules from executive producer Ken Warwick. The group has to be a mixture of day one and day two contestants. Some were already working in groups, and will now have to start over. It’s only fair, though, as otherwise day one people have a definite advantage.

Alicia Burnhart, a cop, can’t find a group and it’s pissing her off. She shouts out to the crowd looking for a group that wants to do Joy to the World or Stuck Like Glue with her. Amy Brumfield, 24, of Gailinburg, TN, lives in a tent in the woods, and can’t find a place to roost tonight either. She’s also been feeling sick all day, and is afraid she has the flu. Jackie Sara and Matheny Trico from day one jump on the stage looking for group two people to join them singing More Than a Feeling. Other groups are already starting their work.

Amy is still struggling to find a group and is feeling very weak on top of it. She’s having a hard time being inside and wants air, saying she’s “stuffocating.” Alicia finds a groupmate in Dustin Cundave, who is also alone. They need two more people. She gets on the stage and asks for more people.

Richie Law from day two is still looking for groups. All the groups doing the song he wants have five people in them, so he realizes he needs to be more versatile and start looking for other groups. HeeJun Han, Phillip Phillips, and Jayron Jackson, day one people, are looking for a day two person. HeeJun calls them MIT, Most International Team. Phillip approaches Richie, and they discuss singing Broken Strings.

Amy finally connects up with Alicia who asks if she’s okay. She tells her she’s sick and has had a fever all day. They need one more person for their group. They approach Brianna Bell and tell her they’re doing Joy to the World. She launches into the Christmas Carol. Oops, wrong one. On hearing it’s Jeremiah the bullfrog, she turns on her heels quickly. Alicia is used to people running from her. Brianna seems to be auditioning groups much the way Scotty McCreery did last year. Well, it did work for him. Jackie and Matheny approach Alicia’s group about becoming a quintet. They argue about song choices. They start deciding on a song without Alicia, who is not happy about that.

Alicia is without a group … again. She will only do Joy to the World or Stuck Like Glue, though, she that’s what happens when you’re so limiting. She assumes, though, that the reason she can’t find a group is because she’s a cop. Brianna has found a group called The Bettys with Jen, Cherie, Sharie, and Gabrielle. Alicia finally forms a group

Brielle von Hugel was in a group with Pia Toscano last season and is now back again, this time with Shannon Magrane and Kyle Crews. She runs the groups, being she’s the only one who’s done this before. Brielle’s mom watches her, calling her bossy and a control freak. Kyle refers to her as a creative manager. He thinks he’s supervising the whole thing to make sure it goes according to plan. Brielle’s mom doesn’t agree with his supervision.

Symone is back, saying the doctors determined she was dehydrated and needs to drink more water, eat more, and rest. Her dad gets impatient and says she just needs to drink more. She gets told by an Idol muckety muck that she needs to find a group. She’s worried no one will want her to join this late, but does find a group to let her in.

Amy is still struggling, saying she feels kind of weak. Matheny is determined to not get sick, so he’s staying hydrated. Jackie calls getting sick “not an option.” Something must be going around, as Amy isn’t the only one feeling sick. Ryan Seacrest notes that everyone Amy came into contact with is “dropping like flies.” She’s seen in line the day before with everyone holding hands. She was holding Gabriella’s hand, and Gabriella is barfing in a plastic garbage bag, but still trying to stick this thing out tonight.

Phillip, of the group MIT, has had four kidney stones the past few months, and he had to go back to his room this night feeling sick, but comes back when he starts to feel better. But Richie, who was added to his group, is worried about becoming dry and boring. He’s the only one who has had musical theory classes from the group and is trying to make different harmonies and dance moves. Heejun says it’s not working out, and he’s worried he’ll go home tomorrow.

At midnight, some groups are already heading to bed. The group Alicia finally ended up in has a member, Christian, who is sick. He had to go back to his room for awhile. He says the more he pukes the better he feels. He comes back, and Alicia is struggling to learn the song, while he still isn’t feeling 100%, feeling shaky. Amy, meanwhile, is determined to play hardball with the flu bug.

HeeJun of MIT doesn’t know why they can’t keep this thing simple. They need four different harmonies, four different dance steps, and four different facial expressions. He thinks all his friends are going to laugh at him “because of this cowboy kid (Richie).” Cowboy Richie admits they’re all on the verge of killing each other, but believes it’s the price of playing nice with the other kids. HeeJun is getting a very bad perspective of cowboys, even Dallas Cowboys. “Freakin’ cowboys.” Richie says, “We’re going to do this my way, and that’s it.” He goes off to bed, and HeeJun is figuring he just needs to let him “do his thang.”

The Bettys are still fighting it out in the wee hours of the morning. They’re not getting along very well either. It’s not even clear what they’re arguing about, but they all start leaving, one by one, and Gabrielle the puker isn’t even the first one to leave. Eventually, Jennifer is all alone, crying on her cell phone. Brianna then comes back to her in tears, and they work together through their tears to try and figure it out, saying if the others dont’ know the choreography, that’s their fault. Jennifer also helps Brianna with her lyrics. They finally go to bed at 5:11 AM.

First thing in the morning, some are already working on their performances, and the judges start arriving. Steven thinks sleep deprivation brings the best out of everyone. Then again, he hasn’t watched their performances yet. Heejun doesn’t have a lot of hope for his group, MIT.

Up first are The Bettys, but we won’t get to see it until next Wednesday. We’ll see more medical drama then, too, as people continue to collapse. We won’t know until then if it’s related to this flu bug that seems centered around Amy. But certainly, it seems it could be related as well to whatever happened to Symone. Maybe it wasn’t just dehydration. Either way, it still shouldn’t have been a cliffhanger the way it was, whether it was tied to whatever happened tonight, and what will happen next week. And now, we’re stuck waiting nearly a week to find out what happens with the rest of it.

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American Idol, Feb. 8 – An Unnecessary Ending

After what seems like a really quick few weeks of auditions, we’re already into Hollywood Week. It’s not exactly like it once was, as they speed it up in order to devote one-and-a-half evenings to the Green Mile episode(s). This means all the drama we’re left with in the end is the tears from people getting cut and begging to say, as well as people staying up too late in group round, then not being able to get along with each other when they’re stressed and tired.

One-half of the contestants get ready to take the stage, while the other half are off doing something else. In the past they toured the city; are they doing that again this year? They’ll come out in groups of ten and perform singly with no feedback.

In the first group is Johnny Keyser, 22, a server from Pompano Beach, FL, and Heejun Han, 22, a non-profit organizer from Flushing, NY. Johnny goes first, singing Dreamin’, and the judges are clearly enjoying what they’re hearing. Heejun is worried, as he’s never heard anyone sing like that before, and feels Johnny is the type of guy everyone will fall in love with. The judges encourage him to shake out his nerves. He sings How Am I Supposed to Live Without You, and does really well. When it comes to the judgment, both get through to the next round. Suddenly, Heejun is seeing himself as one of the pretty people.

Elise Testone, 28, a vocal coach/musician from Charleston, SC, has a a great bluesy voice, and Steven Tyler cracks up about it … out of joy. Baylie Brown, 21, a nanny from Krum, TX, is gorgeous and has a pretty voice to match. Hallie Day, 24, a waitress from Baltimore, sings Natural Woman, and feels every note. Their entire group makes it through. So far we haven’t seen any tough goodbyes yet of any favorites from the auditions, but it has to be coming at some point.

It’s a look backstage with Ryan as one person is standing in line totally calm, the next person is drilling her legs back and forth, and the guy behind her seems to be giving himself a verbal beatdown. Another guy says his hands are sweaty and his heart is beating, and another girl is nervous about meeting Steven.

Jen Hirsh, 25, a winery employee from Agoura Hills, has a gameplan to not play with her hair. She watched the video and realized she does it all the time. She sings Up to the Mountain and has been successful in not touching her hair. Jennifer Lopez seems stunned that she actually has a melody in her performance, and Steven enjoys her with his eyes closed. Randy Jackson cuts her off, while Steven yells out, “Don’t stop.

Lauren Gray, 21, a waitress/musician from Hardy, AR, doesn’t stop when Randy tries to cut her off. He has to flag her down. Jen and Lauren both make it through.

Heather Youmans, 19, a performer from Vista, CA, sings Crazy on You and can’t seem to find the melody or pitch. J-Lo wrinkles her nose at her. Perhaps the headband is too tight. Saccha Julian, 18, from Tacoma, WA, and Candice Russell, 19, a teacher’s assistant from Tualatin, OR, both struggle as well. We don’t see if any of them make it, but we can only assume they don’t.

Steven has a pep talk with the next people to take the stage, and it’s not clear why, unless he’s just messing around. Phillip Phillips, 21, a pawn shop employee from Leesburg, GA, is the next one out, and he had a hard time getting there, as he had never flown in an airplane before. He sang a really unique version of Thriller with his guitar at the audition. He now has to perform without it. He sings Papa’s Gotta a Brand New Bag, and again, it’s totally unique. He can’t seem to stop that music from flowing out of him.

Reed Grimm, 25, a nanny from Ellsworth, WI, has been onstage since he was just a young boy. He sings I Got a Golden Ticket (you have to love the humor), and he reminds you somewhat of the video they show of him singing as a little boy. The other auditioning love it. Travis Orlando, 18, of the Bronx, was sent home from Hollywood right after week one last year. His mom walked out on the family and broke his dad’s heart, and his dad happens to be a very sick man. As Randy jams at the desk, J-Lo just smiles. While Reed and Phillip move on, Travis somehow misses it again. He cries, saying he has to go back to nothing. Reed and Johnny console him.

Others going home from this round are Ramiro Garcia, Jason “Wolf” Hamlin, and Jenny Schick go home as well. Sixty-eight people total are sent home home on this day.

It’s day two with the second group waiting to take the stage. Adam Brock notes everyone else is dropping like flies, but not him, as he’s flapping his wings. He’s been told there’s a large black woman trapped inside of him, because of his soulful voice. This is the first time he’s been away from his baby daughter for this long. He’s hopeful to get to stay, but knows some of him will be grateful to go home. Jennifer asked him to sing Walking in Memphis at the auditions, so he’s singing it for her now, and she seems appreciative. I think his baby girl will have to do without him a little longer.

Jane Carrey, daughter to Jim Carrey, is up next. She discusses how difficult it was to grow up in his shadow. Her expectation for this week is that she’ll be staying. Jane sings Lookin’ Out My Back Door, and needs a little phrasing help. It’s judgement time, Jane gets sent home, saying she’s disappointed, as she knows she could have done better, but Adam makes it through. Jane calls her dad who tells her he has heard no a lot, and it eventually worked out okay for him. Adam calls home as well, and shares his good/bad news.

David Leathers, Jr., 17, from Fayetteville, NC, was a ladies man at the auditions, and he’s keeping it up here in Hollywood. He calls the ladies here amazing, adding almost as much as the singing he is hearing. But first, Shannon Magrane, 16, of Tampa, sings Fallin’. steps up to the mic and sings Because You Love Me to everyone’s delight and amazement.

Jessica Phillips, 25, a receptionist from Brooklyn, is up. She’s the one whose fiancé had a stroke, and she’s acted as his caretaker since. She feels like she’s standing up on everyone’s shoulders. Fittingly, she sings All he Main I Need, and has a weak start, then pulls it out. David, Shannon, and Jessica all make it through. Angie Zeiderman and Britney Kerr make it as well.

Erika Van Pelt, 26, a mobile DJ/wedding singer from South Kingstown, RI, sings Glitter in the Air, and has perhaps the most powerful female voice I’ve heard this year. Next up is Creighton Fraker, 28, a starving artist from Queens, NY, singing Somebody to Love, and it doesn’t seem fair that he should be starving. Aaron Marcellus, 27, a music teacher from Atlanta, sings one for the ladies, and has some mad runs. They all make it easily through.

Lauren Mink, 25, a program director for adults with disabilities from Winchester, KY, knows everyone in their program will feel proud of her no matter what, but she knows they will miss her if she makes it. She sings Alone, and J-Lo notices she switched keys in the middle without warning. Jeremy Rosado, 19, a front desk clerk at a an infectious disease doctor’s office, and a germophobe, from Valrico, FL, sings Superstar. J-Lo shows off her goosebumps.

Symone Black, 16, of Rancho Cucamonga, CA, counts on her dad as a mentor, and she fully admits he’s a stage dad. She sings Sittin’ On the Dock of the Bay, and we’re just waiting for it. We’ve all seen what happens in the previews, so we’re just waiting. Something really weird happens with this fall, though; it’s almost like she was beginning to pass out before it, as she started stumbling for no explicable reason. She falls off the stage, and everyone rushes in. The judges sit in silence at first, then approach her, along with Ryan Seacrest, as Nigel Lythgoe, who normally only sees these type of injuries on So You Think You Can Dance, tends to her.

I think it’s really sucky (this situation calls for such a term) for Nigel to have taken this moment and used it as a cliffhanger until last night. To use probably the scariest moment in someone’s life like that is terrible. We should have been told at that point how she was doing. It shouldn’t be a cliffhanger. For an audience that is still recovering from watching a 13-year-old girl have a breakdown on national TV during The X Factor, this was unnecessary to be given a cliffhanger on whether a 16-year-old broke her neck or not.

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The Voice, Feb. 6 – Cheese Ball Edition

The Voice blind auditions part II are about to begin. We’re in for two hours of a chair-turning, star-discovering, wise-cracking ride with Adam Levine, Cee-Lo Green, Christina Aguilera, and Blake Shelton. I’m all set. This time instead of popcorn, I’m armed with little puffy cheese balls and I’m not afraid to use them.  I don’t want to use them, I’d rather eat them, but I will if I have to. (I’m talking to you there Blake Shelton!)

But before we get to the unknowns, the coaches kick things off with a Prince medley.  Christina, Cee-Lo, and Adam look within their comfort zone right into Party like it’s 1999; Blake looks like he’s trying to figure out how he got talked into this.  Cee-Lo takes the lead with Little Red Corvette. Is it me, or is it hard to hear him or the music over his outfit? Adam takes over for I want to be you lover. Blake kicks Kiss into high gear, making it sound a bit HonkyTonk!

The first auditioner up from Nashville is Haily Leland, AKA The Line, a singing duo. While they aren’t involved with each other, they almost were.  They describe their relationship as something like an old married couple.  Finishing each other’s sentences, always knowing what the other one is thinking.  But what?  Since they’re not married, they don’t have to care?

The Line launches into American Girl.  The judges seem unaware that there are two singers until Blake spins.  Cee Lo and Christine turn at the same time, and then just as I grab a cheese ball to aim at Adam, he spins!

Adam: “The energy changed in the room, I want to be part of that energy.”

Cee Lo: “You guys are a couple?” Then “I pushed my button.”

Yeah Cee Lo, we got that part.

Christina: “I know something’s amazing when I hear it, and I heard it up there.”

She reminds everyone that last year Blake had a duet and sent them home. Blake is clearly touched that she remembered.  I imagine if he had any of my cheese balls, they’d be flying in her direction about now.

And Blake launches into something that brings up his wife. Again. Wow, I wonder if that was part of their marriage vows. Adam gets annoyed and Blake says that’s all I have.

Blake also points out that he was the first to turn around.

The duo discuss it.  If they were really an old married couple, shouldn’t she just tell him?  (I know, I’m gonna get in trouble for that one!) After all the whispering, Hailey announces that they pick Christina.

From New York, we get Jamar Rodgers.  For Jamar, Carson Daly takes a trip all the way to the Bronx to deliver the news.  From here, we learn he’s beat drugs, homelessness and is HIV positive.  He tears up as Carson gives him the invitation. We also learn that Cee Lo is his idol. I wonder who he’ll pick if they all turn?

Seven Nation Army starts and the coaches are digging the beat at least.  All their heads are nodding to the beat. Blake nods off time.  The crowd loves him. The judges aren’t turning. Why not? They want to!  Finally, Cee Lo goes around.  Christina and Adam are thinking, but no one else swings around.

Cheese balls to them all!

Jamar seems really happy to have gotten Cee Lo and lets him know.

Blake, however, sums it up nicely.  “I would have felt really, really stupid to push my button, knowing now that there was no way in hell he was going to pick anyone but Cee Lo.”

What’s with Cee Lo and the cat?

Next up, Rock N Roll family man Neal Middleman comes in with one of the coolest hats ever on this show.  Not to mention some pretty cute kids.  He’s doing this for Health Insurance for his family.  This is a man who fell off of a 35-40 foot building, and in his words, “went splat.” Hope the same thing doesn’t happen with his rendition of Heard it on the Grapevine.

The coaches are nodding again, but not turning. Blake shakes his head no. It doesn’t look good.


In summary, it was too much for them.

Oh well, I still love the hat.

The Voice, Feb. 5 – Super Bowl Night Premiere!

So in case you really have been living under a rock, the Super Bowl was tonight.  Since history has unfolded once again as it was meant to, meaning the Giants won against the Patriots, I am able to now enjoy the post Super Bowl premiere of The Voice!  But I don’t have any popcorn left because I threw it at the screen during that game and the dogs ate it.

The rules of the auditions are pretty simple.  Singer comes out while the coaches have their backs turned.  If they like what they hear, they hit their buttons and turn around.

If more than one turns around, then the singer gets to decide who to go with based on reputation, who they think they’d work with best, who makes the better case and of course who comes up with the better one-liners.

No grabbing the other coaches’ facemasks allowed.  Ok, I made that up, but who wouldn’t like to see Cee Lo Green do a Tebow?

Rae Lynne, 17 years old, is up first.  She’s from Texas, does chores, including something with chickens, (Wonder which ones are original and which are extra crispy.)  She’s going to sing a Miranda Lambert song.  Not sure if that’s a great idea, as Carson Daly points out, since she’s Blake Shelton’s wife.  Didn’t go over well last year.  What? Is he supposed to say something like “You sang that song the way it was meant to be sung?”

Have you heard some of Miranda’s songs, like Hell on Heels, which Rae’s really killing right now.

Adam Levine hits the button.

There goes Blake!

Rae sounds pretty good.  She looks sweet as pie, but has some sass in her voice.

Cee Lo is digging it, but neither he nor Christina Aguilera hit their button.

Adam: “I am beyond happy with my choice to have pressed my button for you”

Blake: Coughs “I can make you a country star!”

Adam; “Why would you want to be only a country star?”

But, big surprise, Rae Lynn goes with Mr. Lambert.

Bet she’s hoping to meet Mrs. Shelton.

Up next, Jesse Cambell

Sob story about his wife leaving him and his daughter.  They slept on the street for a year.  Now he literally sings for his supper at churches.

Within seconds of the opening notes of A Song for You, everyone but Blake spins.

Followed by … Blake turning as well.

First a standing ovation, followed by Blake announcing he realized he was the only dumbass who was missing the show.

Good pitch there, Blake.  Point it out, just in case he missed it the first time.

Christina: “I heard you come on strong, but you followed through over all of my expectations.”

Blake coughs a “Bullcrap” at her.

Cee Loo Green: “You touched my soul, I felt it deep inside. That’s my man, that’s my brother!”

Then a little back and forth between Cee Loo and Christina that may not be completely appropriate once The Voice is back on during prime time.

Adam takes the time to remind everyone she had the winner last time.

Jesse seems unsure.

The first person who came from his mind was …

Dang it!  Commercial break!

And we’re back!

And Jesse picks


Blake looks upset, like as the last one to turn around, he had a shot?

Up next, Daniel Rosa.  Ok, so Daniel Rosa so we know he’s nervous.  I wonder how much that yellow bowtie is helping his confidence level.  He plays a really small guitar for a bit, then he steps out on stage.


The judges are contemplating it, but no one is turning.  He’s singing “what are you waiting for?” and probably thinking the same thing. It sounds good, but not “oh wow!” good.

They all give Daniel the “Don’t take it personally,” speech and mention to watch his pitch.

No one mentions the yellow bowtie.