February 5, 2009

"I was in heels since 5 in the morning and then I was up 'til 3 and then I have scoliosis and..."

I'm really glad Kim Cosmopolitan is summing up last night's "American Idol." I had to force myself to watch it and felt like I was having no fun at all, but it seems highly amusing now, which just proves once again how much better writing is than TV.
God, I'm not sure I understand the point of AI's Group Night. I mean, there's obviously no competitive group-singing aspect of the show, so what is it? Is it to give Your people a chance to show how they triumph over the adversity of having 18 hours to arrange and perform a song with others? Is it so You can assess their star quality among others who may or may not possess star quality themselves? Is it for no other reason than to give Your people at home some drama to keep them on board throughout the interminable early weeks of pre-dialing for dollars American Idol? Why, God, why?...

Oh, and thank you, God, for a smidgeon of righteous justice. The payoff on this one was pretty good. But I guess You knew that when You gave her the big starring edit in her audition. You're very prescient that way. Anyway, thanks.
Kim also posted on the Tuesday night show. Best part:
I hope Lil Rounds had a great first audition, because I did not like her shouty I-ee-I-ee-I performance one little bit, and I'm actually a fan of the song. And I am in actual physical pain from restraining myself from mocking her name.
Li'l Rounds. I get it. Like some off-brand Ritz Cracker. (Or is it wrong to refer to a non-white person that way?) As to the singing, yeah, I thought it was horrible. To suddenly begin "I Will Always Love You" at the big, loud finale instant is an aesthetic crime. Yet the judges gave her a standing ovation. It was ghastly.

14 comments:

Paul Zrimsek said...

To begin "I will Always Love You" is an aesthetic crime, period.

MayBee said...

The purpose of group night is to test work ethic and the ability to work with others under trying conditions.
The music business is hard. It's filled with late nights and performing while exhausted. You don't have to behave well, but you have always have to pull out a good performance in the end.

MadisonMan said...

Paul, as sung by Dolly, that's an extraordinary song. As sung by Whitney Wannabees? Dreadful.

Paul Zrimsek said...

I haven't heard it sung by Dolly. Does she use a different, less dreary melody?

michaele said...

I felt abused by the continuous promises by Seacrest that we were going to see great performances in the next segment and then it was just more soap opera drama. I actually wanted to hear more singing and start picking my favorites. I think I'll check out if the whole performances are offered on line or if we are limited to the edit. Yes, I'm an idiot to care...I know!

Beth said...

It's a simple ballad, not a power ballad, in the hands of Dolly Parton.

John Hawks said...

Group night also gives the contestants their first opportunity to do something creative with a song that they haven't brought with them. So it helps select for the David Cook - Blake Lewis type of performers.

Plus, the show does feature group performances, both on results nights (which need to get people to watch the whole hour somehow) and in the endless Ford advertisements. Hokey, yes. But would it be less hokey if they didn't screen for group work potential somehow?

SteveR said...

While I understand the assumed or stated reasons why group nights are used, its always looked like a way to create dramatic BS for the show. The reality is the good ones generally get through in spite of dreadful team performances, and rarely (perhaps never) has it elevated a marginal performer into the upper group.

As for I Will Always Love You, its really only a good song as sung 30 plus years ago by Dolly with a passable version done by Linda Ronstadt. Anything done recently is painful.

Michael H said...

The group that included the two men from Milwaukee (bartender and dead wife guy) did very well. Good.

The oil field roughneck did well also. It seems like most of the men who made it to next week were manly guys, with a couple of exceptions. I can't stand the emo whiney guys.

It was a surprise that the Osmond kid was booted. I thought he had an okay voice. Maybe the producers didn't want it to look like he was s ringer.

Paul Zrimsek said...

I guess Dolly does about all that can be done with the song, but I still don't think it's much. (The pauses in the refrain do help a bit; Whitney Houston's sustained braying only underlines the haplessness of the tune's attempts to pry itself away from A.)

PatCA said...

Yeah, I wanted to see more of the performances. Those are often the most fun--the solos are going to be belted tired pop ballads from here on in.

Love the Milwaukee Boys! I grew up there so I'm rooting for them.

Jennifer said...

Whatever happened to the poor, traumatized Annie? I didn't even see her in Hollywood.

I was so bummed to watch Rose Flack transform into a run of the mill drama queen. I really liked her.

I hate the drama of group night, but I love watching the really great groups pull out something special. And I feel like I'm stuck in an episode of Sex in the City, totally powerless against the allure of grieving widower dude.

mrs whatsit said...

Dolly wrote the song. Wikipedia says she wrote it for her manager and mentor, Porter Wagoner, when they came to a parting of the ways. She sings it with tenderness, as if she means it, and not with all the emoting and hollering that Whitney and the Idolettes find necessary.

Back when the Whitney version was dominating the radio, I saw one of my favorite newspaper stories ever. Somebody grabbed a gun and shot out his neighbor's stereo because the neighbor would not stop playing Whitney Houston singing "I will always love you" over and over and over again at top volume, with the windows open. I understood completely.

Ann Althouse said...

It's one of the most interesting relationships, to always love someone whom you are separated from. If you don't understand how this can happen, then... well, I guess you are lucky.