I'll live-blog it tonight on my brand new, super spectacular MacBook. Yeah, it's pretty cool!
UPDATE: Here we go.
Gwen Stefani will be helping the Idol wannabes this time.
LaKisha goes first. Gwen's "blown away" by her. Donna Summer here we come. '70s again. Okay, the problem that Simon mentioned last week about not making the song her own, is true again tonight. She needs to do a better job of making a song her own--reinterpreting it. This is hard to do. She's technically great. Cute dress. Looks the youngest she's ever looked, while singing old.
"Fly Diva", says Randy. Paula says she "did Sommer proud". Simon loves the boots. "You're 30 years younger this week. Love the big note at the end. Great vocal." She's back in the fold.
Spiderman looks good based on the commercial, don't you think? Steve was meh on Spiderman II. Save the gratuitous violence (I don't like implied almost-rape scenes in movies an 8 year old might see), I liked it.
Chris Sligh is up. "How much downtime do you have during the competition?" He knits, crochets and plays the bongos in his undies. Mostly, he just sleeps. He looks like he's lost weight. Singing Police. Wow, he sounds pretty good. Don't like how he's tugging on the notes in the chorus. I like it punchier. (Oh, he's singing Everything She Does Is Magic.) He's got a nice strong voice, I just like more variability during the tune. Weird end. Abrupt.
"Good song," says Randy. Rhythmically "you could never get in the pocket" and "Gwen was right". Paula says "the audience wants to groove with you." "I thought it was a mess," says Simon. "It just didn't feel right."
Gina is emotional. This is a big day for her. "It's all about the lyrics," says Gwen. Good song. Excellent choice, Gina! I can't help wonder if her diction would improve if she got rid of that tongue ring. I get that it's her schtick. Wow, it's hard to sing Christy Hines, Pretenders. She gives it a good go, though. Crowd loves it.
Randy: He says it's one of her best performances ever. Paula loves that she's improving each week. Simon toys with her: wasn't one of the best, it was the BEST. Best performance tonight, enthuses Simon. Audience loved it. I like her. She has spirit. Brendan Loy wants to do naughty things with her. Those boots, honey. I can see why.
Sanjaya--Bathwater by No Doubt. Gwen says, "Good luck to him. It's a tough song." Oh, good grief. What has he done this week with his hair? Dude, he has a mop on his head. He's actually doing a decent job on the song. "You're my kind of girl." Oh, boy.
Randy's laughing. "I'm speechless every time. You can actually sing. Go out there and do it." Paula, "If you had the gumption to really go for it, go for it. You can do it." Simon, "I presume there was no mirror in your dressing room. I don't think it matters what we say anymore. If people like you, good luck." Seven pony-tails for good luck.
Haley is singing True Colors. "Go back and tone it down." Uh oh. One of my most favorite songs. Don't wreck it Haley. Man the girl can't hang on to the melody. She looks gorgeous. I'm guessing that Simon will like that. She can't sing, though. I want her to go home. Didn't take the advice from Gwen. I hope she gets smacked for it.
Randy's not "grabbed". Paula says it requires nothing but the melody. Simon says "sweet, but forgettable." They are all being far more generous than I would have been. Yuck. Her song sucked. The way Ryan is in to her makes me think he's not gay. Have you noticed how he moons over certain artists and kind of acts annoyed with others? It's subtle, like how a newscaster delivers the news with small smiles or barely-there winces but the audience is subtly being manipulated. Ryan wants you to like Haley.
Phil Stacey. More questions, how's it feel to be a household name? He's too busy. Every Breath You Take--Police. Gwen thinks he should stick to the melody. Something bugs me about this guy. Can't put my finger on it. He's doing pretty good--honey voiced--with the song. Nice back up help. Nice transition. I'll be watchin' you. Makes me think of the Stalkers Skit on Saturday Night Live.
Randy thought it was solid. Kinda liked it. Paula thinks that his voice has some color. They all seem blah on it. But Simon says it is a great choice of song. He feels that this is the first time Phil is taking it seriously. Hmmmm.... I don't know. Does he just think he won't actually make it so is playing it safe? I've wondered where his head is about this. He always seems somewhere else. Maybe he misses his family or the military family? Don't know.
Melinda is "mind-blowing, your voice is crazy" says Gwen. Melinda in her lower register. She's got control. Oops! First flat note I've ever heard. Typed too soon. Hair looks cute. She shouldn't go sleeveless.
Randy: Interprets the feeling of the song--that was the bomb again! He loves her. Paula says she tells a story and has charisma. Simon sez...I don't think this is the performance you'll be remember for, hate the outfit. I agree with Simon, actually.
Blake singing The Cure. I like Blake. Smoky. He is the most Idol-worthy, I think. He should get a contract no matter what. He knows how to work his way around a beat. Sounds nasal in parts and then goes Chris Martin Coldplay-ish. He looks tired. Still, on his worst day, he's better than the other guys and most of the girls, too.
Not perfect song choice, Randy says. Paula loves it. You're taking risks and she wants to see him in the finalé. Simon calls him the front-running guy.
Jordin singing Gwen Stefani. Gwen calls Jordin "refreshing". More boots, bad skirt and she's trying to go little girl with the outfit. She's actually singing it. Gwen yells this song. Of course, Gwen can't really sing. Ha! She's a showman, though. I like Jordin. She's young and can sing.
Randy thinks it was risky and says it was great. Paula calls her "adorable, young and hip". Simon calls her "the most improved".
Chris doing Don't Speak by Gwen. Gwen says he likes to do "the vocal olympics. Focus on the song and emotion." I find it interesting that all the contestants can sing better than Gwen. Funny. Chris needs to wear something brighter and more fun. He's young. Taking off with it now. Nasal finish. I don't think he's the worst. I was surprised he was second from the bottom last week.
Paula says, "You're good." Simon not crazy about the vocal. He feels that Chris is struggling with the vocals. I haven't watched Idol before this season, but it seems that all the contestants really get along. They seem truly pained when someone is voted off.
This week: #1 Gina, #2 Blake, #3 Melinda, #4 Phil, #5 Jordin, #6 Chris Richardson--the rest is a toss up.
Who would I vote off? No Doubt: Haley or Sanjaya. Who will get voted off? Who the heck knows.
UPDATE II: There is some discontent about Gwen Stefani apparently phoning it in for last night's show. Ann Althouse says this:
Gwen Stefani was the lamest celebrity mentor they've ever had on the show. For a while, I had the theory that she's just an idiot, but I think what it was was that she wouldn't put any time into the show. So they had fake shots with her and each contestant, and we never saw any interaction.Personally, I think Gwen revealed herself right away when she said that a lot of her favorite singers weren't actually very good singers. Gwen herself can't carry a tune in a bucket. She rivals Madonna when it comes to form over substance. I think Gwen was intimidated by the talent of the singers. She said as much. What advice do you give people who sing better than you? Gwen's strength is rhythm and she did give good advice to Chris about that. Otherwise, what can anyone expect from her? Remember her Superbowl performance? That's what I thought. Here's a reminder, try to not cry: