May 15, 2007

"Thank you, Randy Johnson," says Melinda Doolittle on "American Idol" tonight.

Give me a break! Melinda doesn't know Randy's name? [ADDED: I'm told she was making a joke, razzing the mayor who'd just misread Randy's name.] Well, here we are at the final three, ready to narrow it down to two for the final. Each judge is giving each of the three one song to sing. Jordin sang some jazzy thing chosen by Simon that I didn't recognize. Then, Blake sang the great, great song "Roxanne," chose by Paula, and the only thing you can say against him is that he didn't do as well as Sting. But, so what? Now, Melinda is doing that Randy-chosen song, some Whitney Houston thing, and they act like it's the best in the first round.

Round 2, chosen by the producers. Jordin does "She Works Hard for the Money," chose. Nice. Blake, "This Love." Okay. It was Blakey. Melinda gets the right song. It's a Tina Tuner song: "Nutbush City Limits." Excellent.

Round 3 has the singers chosing their own songs. Jordin choses "I Who Have Nothing." Cheesy. She reaches her outstretched hand at us. This is a Tom Jones song. Too hammy for my taste. "It's an incredibly old fashioned song," says Simon, correctly. Blake does some Sir Mix-a-Lot song. He shows his style and I think they like it. Melinda picks "I'm a Woman," the Maria Muldaur song. She does a great job, with all kinds of detail to it, and I think it's clear that she needs to make it through to next week.

So, who should go, Blake or Jordin?

ADDED: From Television Without Pity:
Back in Seattle, Blake and Sir Mix-A-Lot put it down and performed the mother of all shout-outs to Blake's magical ass, before Blake returns to L.A. to perform the only Robin Thicke song I'll ever enjoy, "When I Get You Alone."
I stand corrected... and admit my attention was flagging last night. I'm bored by the final set of contestants. I kept waiting for Blake to really bloom. Maybe he didn't have the time to work out original arrangements that included his beat boxing. Too bad. He could have been amusing. Instead, he seems weak, bookended by two powerhouse females -- who sing in a style that just doesn't interest me. I don't see how he can possibly win, but I won't be surprised if he gets through to the final.


Patrick J. Shea said...

Blake should go. He has style, I'll give him that, but it's an acquired taste I haven't quite picked up. His voice is decent, but not all that great -- think a really good, trendy wedding singer. Jordin, on the other hand, is a font of potential -- her voice is excellent, and at 17 she has time to develop it even more. As one of the guest mentors noted, she really does have the chance to become one of the great vocalists of her generation. Moreover, I love the idea of the final competition coming down to two African Americanw women. Paired with the Survivor finale, that would be a real bonus.

Diane Wigder said...

Melinda was actually trying to make a joke. She was repeating the name (Randy Johnson) that the mayor of her town mistakenly read off of the scroll announcing the song Randy had picked for her.

Based on tonite, I think Blake should go, but I'm hoping Jordin goes. I think a final with Blake and Melinda would be more interesting.

Ruth Anne Adams said...

Didn't Paula mistakenly call Melinda "Melayna"? Perhaps she was just slurring her speech.

Kurt said...

Going into tonight I was certain that I wanted to see a Melinda vs. Jordin final. But now I'm not so sure. Blake was not the strongest of the night, but he is unique. Jordin is incredibly talented, but she was also rather cheesy tonight. I had thought that Jordin would win the competition, but now I'm not so sure. Melinda was definitely the strongest tonight, in my opinion. A Melinda vs. Jordin final might be a lot like Fantasia vs. the much less memorable also very young Diana Degarmo (sp?). If it were Blake vs. Melinda in the final, though, it would be much more unusual and possibly much more competitive.

blake said...

Blake should go.

The water-cooler conversations are driving me to distraction.

Jenny D. said...

Dial idol says it's too close to call. Could be any one.

Matt Brown said...

Blake should go. He's a showman, but he doesn't have the vocal talent of Melinda or Jordin.

Tom T. said...

Jordin should go. She has more errors in song judgment than Blake, and she is significantly less consistent in singing quality than he is. Her rendition of the Donna Summer song was really flat, for instance. Blake has had off nights in the past, certainly, but so has Jordin, and he was too consistent last night to be sent home.

Of course, it doesn't matter in the end. Melinda has got to be a lock to win it all.

Icepick said...

Blake butchered "Roxanne". He made the thing peppy, which is just plain wrong. Also, he was having a lot of trouble NOT smiling and was clearly having too much fun. It didn't at all sound like he was desperately in love with a hooker. At least Jordin's cheesy performance of her last song was appropriate - it's a cheesy song, after all.

Also the man that mispronounced Randy's name while reading the fax to Melinda was actually Governor Bredesen of Tennessee.

Zeb Quinn said...

Say buh-buh to the Blakester.

Jennifer said...

Jordin just bugs me. But, I have to think the producers want desperately for her to win. Melinda's great and all but she's kind of Taylor Hicks - appealing to an older-than-teenybopper crowd. And that doesn't bode well for sales.

I think Blake's off tonight.

I love American Idol and watch it every year, but I've never bought a single thing an Idol has sold. I *might* buy Blake's though.

Jennifer said...

Wait, I need to correct that. I did buy Taylor Hicks CD as a Cristmas present for my mom.

Jennifer said...


And, this will be my last correction no mater haow badlee I scroow thiz one upp.

Too many jims said...

Blake does some Sir Mix-a-Lot song.

I didn't see the show but from other reviews I think that what Blake performed was Robin Thicke’s “When I Get You Alone”.

I suspect that the Sir-Mix-a-Lot reference came from the fact that Blake appeared with Mix-a-lot when Blake was back at home in Seattle.

Modern Otter said...

Jordin choses "I Who Have Nothing." Cheesy. She reaches her outstretched hand at us. This is a Tom Jones song.

I associate "I Who Have Nothing" with Ben E. King who was the first one to chart with it in 1963. I love that Jordin sang it and thought it was a wonderful performance. (Often as I agree with Simon on things, he seems to know little and care less about any popular music pre-1975 or so.)

Melinda picks "I'm a Woman," the Maria Muldaur song.

Ahem-- the Peggy Lee song!

Interestingly enough, both songs were written by Leiber & Stoller and both first recorded in 1963

Joe said...

Melinda and Jordin are going to split the people-who-vote-for-girls votes, likely leaving Blake safe. I'm going to go out on limb and say Melinda gets voted off a slim margin due to various factors.

(I've observed that when using popular voting, the prettier girl usually loses, however the sentimental voting for Jordin appears to be quite strong.)

Cedarford said...

My bias is Jordan Sparks goes. Then loses 30 pounds and shoots for the Miss America contest. She has the looks, she has the cheesy songs.

Sparks has money-making potential but hasn't shown zilch for personality or originality. Then again, it isn't needed in the "cute young pop artist" niche.

I hope Blake and Melinda make it in.

Blake because he has the freshness and originality and wants to advance his art. He will sell records. He has pop idol looks. Plays instruments. Has written some of his own material. And has the promise that he can crank out "great new stuff".

Melinda because she has a great voice and consistent quality. There is always, always room for a great singer with near-perfect enunciation and heart. Record buyers and concert audiences want the next Gladys Knight, the next Peggy Lee, the next Dionne Warwick...Melinda may not be "pop idol fodder" she might be "great and constantly booked singer for the next 40 years" fodder.

Moreover, I love the idea of the final competition coming down to two African Americanw women. Paired with the Survivor finale, that would be a real bonus.

Why? Does that "uplift the race"? Inspire downtrodden 'yutes? What?
I'd like the final to come down to a skinny bald white guy and an Asian girl in a wheelchair. That would be so inspiring and uplifting and such encouragement to other hapless Asians in wheelchairs and follicly-challenged white guys with high metabolisms.

Other than that, so what! Who cares what ethnicity or biography is involved? It's a singing competition, and people shouldn't be voting for tribal reasons, liberal "uplift" reasons.

May the best two performers make it to the finals.
May Melinda win because she is the best singer.

Ann Althouse said...

"Ahem-- the Peggy Lee song! Interestingly enough, both songs were written by Leiber & Stoller and both first recorded in 1963."

Well, it's the same song. I'm more familiar with Muldaur's version, but I know the Peggy Lee one too.