April 29, 2010

Random thoughts on American Idol 9 contestants

Posted in Music, Television tagged , , , , at 7:12 am by myrlinn

American Idol seems to be floundering a bit this year. Which just goes to show that it’s the quality of contestants which makes the show, not the overpaid judges and host! 

One of the things we’re missing this year is a “story” – a battle royale between  contestants who are really different from each other (Clay Aiken vs Ruben Studdard, the two Davids, Kris Allen vs Adam Lambert), amazing out-of-the-pop-box singers, compelling personalities who keep you watching, contestants who keep improving with every performance…

Still, having said that, I’ve probably watched more of this season than recent seasons. Maybe because I keep pulling for various contestants to hit their stride.

A few random thoughts on this year’s contestants:

Crystal Bowersox – Compelling performer. She’s completely at one with her music, and because of that she pulls you in too.  Where she seems to be falling back a bit, though, is that she’s not having an arc-like run on idol — improving and wowing everyone more and more each week. She started off strong, and stayed at virtually the same level.  Her looks, image and style of music point to a niche market, which is not what an idol winner is usually marketed to. Still, seems to me that she’s clearly the deserving winner of American Idol this year.

Siobhan Magnus – Loved her quirkiness at the beginning, when it seemed more like her being her.  But I get the feeling that she now takes herself, and the competition, too seriously. She’d be more appealing if she gives off more of a don’t-care-what-you-think vibe. Lots of potential in this girl though – she’s got the vocal talent (I don’t love her tone, but I appreciate that she can sing), the looks and perhaps just as important, she loves the stage  and loves creating drama. She’s probably the only one this year who could do really well post-Idol in the pop market, perhaps marketed in the Lady Gaga mold?

Lilly Scott – Wish she were still in the competition.

Tim Urban – Not the best range and stylistic maturity of the bunch, but I miss him now that he’s gone. He’s always pleasant to listen to with a nice tone to his voice, and mostly, I like his intelligence. His answer to Kara when she asked him if  he understood what she meant struck the right note.

Aaron Kelly – Lovely, rich voice. He’s someone who could have done really well with a few more years of performing experience under his belt.

Lee DeWyze – Not too sure how he can stand out post-idol, but he’s got a great tone that will work well on radio, and a certain sweetness to his personality.  He has an outside chance of challenging Crystal for top spot this year.

Casey James – may well end up being remembered for his hair 🙂  Well, at least his stylist has moved away from the Shirley Temple ringlets we saw a few weeks ago to a wavy style which is more  flattering.

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