American Idol Season 8 Top 13 Results Show

For the most part it was a terrific American Idol show last night.  Danny Gokey, Lil Rounds, Allison Iraheta, Kris Allen all gave tremendous performances.  Except for Matt Giraud, who disappointed, my power rankings (see American Idol Season 8 Top 13 Power Rankings) pretty much held up,  Christian music artists Michael Sarver and Kris Allen outperformed their rankings.  I think the biggest disappointment was Anoop Desai (see my Top 13 Performance Wrap-up).

I think I learned something about American Idol song selection,  If you watched the show after reading my article suggesting song suggestions I am sure you had a pretty good laugh.  The only performer to sing the song I suggested was Anoop and that did not go well.  I am not good a song selection.

The American Idol producers are shaking things up again.  They leaked that they had a super secret new judging twist for Season 8.  Rumor is that they will copy the experiment they tried in the French version of American Idol Nouvelle Star where the the judges were given a one-time veto power right which allowed them save a contestant that would have been eliminated based on home viewer voting at any point during the season.  In the same interview the American Idol producer promised that two contestants would go home tonight, so let’s see what happens.

I think we will see Jasmine Murray and Jorge Nunez will go home.

Ryan told us that there were nearly 33 million votes.   That is a lot.  I am excited about Kelly Clarkson performing and, I will wait to see about Kanye West.  I am consistently disappointed by performances by rappers.

So the rule twist is that the American Idol judges get one “save” this season.  If they unanimously agree they can save someone from elimination.  Okay.

The group number was not bad but was saved by Danny Gokey’s absolutely awful dancing, LOL. I guess American Idol let the genie out the bottle last night and Danny will try to be the next Usher.

Michael Sarver was the first to be exposed to the judging and I am so happy he made it through.  Kris Allen made  it through as I suspected.

As suspected Jasmine Murray was eliminated.  They had her sing while the judges decided.  I don’t know, it seemed kind of cruel to make her sing for her supper.  Then she must stand there for the final judgement.  It certainly adds to the cruelty of the judging.  Jasmine seemed heartbroken, but I think it was the right decision.

Kanye West would have been really good if he could actually sing, or if he would have just rapped.  His performance was just uncomfortable for me.

Poor Jorge Nunez looked like he was about to cry before Ryan said anything to him.  The final elimination was between Anoop Dessai and Jorge Nunez.

Ryan announced that in Season 8, they will bring back a former American Idol contestant each week.  That will be cool.  Kelly Clarkson performed “My Life Would Suck Without You”.  I hate the song, but I love the singer.  When is she going to dump this whole Pop scene and jump into the blues with both feet?

In the final judging we learned that Jorge Nunez did not get enough votes and is now reduced to begging the judges in song.  Of course, the judges did not use their only “save” of the season on Jorge.  Sorry, Jorge.

American Idol Season 8 is down to 11 and all six of the Christian music artists on American Idol Season 8 made it through the first week.  Way to go Danny, Lil, Michael, Kris, Scott and Matt!

Check back with me on Monday to see my updated power rankings and, maybe I will try song selection again.

Be sure to download your favorite performances at iTunes by clicking on the icon below.

Apple iTunes

American Idol Season 8 Performance Wrap-up

To start, this was a really good show.  I was worried.  Michael Jackson songs are much easier to screw up than they are to nail.  Sorry, for the carpentry references.  I think, for the most part, the performers exceeded my expectations.  I was worried that Alexis Grace, Allison Iraheta and Scott MacIntyre would struggle and they did not.  I was excited that both Danny Gokey and Lil Rounds took it up a notch.  I had no idea what Meagan Joy Corkery would do, but she was fun and she showed me some vocal skills I did not expect.  Kris Allen showed me a fun, funky side that I can add to his interpretive skills and Michael Sarver continues to burn a laser through the television.

I just tried (at midnight) to go buy the full song studio recordings but they are only available for pre-order right now.  I guess I will buy them on Wednesday.  I plan to buy the performances by Christian music artists Lil Rounds, Scott MacIntyre, Danny Gokey, Michael Sarver and Kris Allen and the recordings of Allison Iraheta and Alexis Grace.

I will review the American Idol Top13 performances and rate them at the same time.  To get my initial reactions check out the American Idol Season 8 Top 13 performance live blog. It feels more appropriate to rate tonight’s American Idol performers in groups rather numerically.

Show Stoppers

  • Lil Rounds led off American Idol Tuesday night with “The Way You Make Me Feel” and she took the song away from Michael JacksonLil Rounds is amazing.  It is time to invite another singer into the Soul music club.  She is a natural.  Did you notice the MJ foot kick and head bob she gave at the beginning of the performance?
  • Danny Gokey sang “PYT”.  Who knew this guy had the funk? He showed me new vocal talent and he showed me he could let loose and have fun.  I loved how he brought the judges into the performance.  I feel even more strongly about him than I did earlier.  Welcome to the party, good time Danny.
  • Allison Iraheta just devoured “Give Into Me”.  What a rock n’ roll power house. Most of the “rockers” I have seen on American Idol have been rock-leaning pop singers.  Not this girl.  We at One21music hope she gets the chance to throw down with some Janis Joplin.  There was not an awkward movement in her performance and she blew out the vocals.

Fun, Enjoyable Perfomances

  • Kris Allen put on a guitar and sang a funky version of “Remember The Time”.  If they had mixed the guitar sound better this could have been an American Idol showstopper, but the guitar looked like nothing more than a prop.  When we could hear it, the guitar was really cool. He can sing much better than I thought and he has a cool, sophisticated funkification. He is more talented than any of the previous season’s pretty boys.
  • Michael Sarver delivered a very heartfelt version of “You’re Not Alone”.   Michael’s vocals are good, not great, but he has some instinctive connection with the camera.  By gazing
  • into the camera he makes you enjoy him.
  • Alexis Grace delivered a smokey, bluesy take on “Dirty Diana” with smooth, confident moves on stage.  She just pushed a little too hard at the end and the song got away from her.

All of the performances above made me forget about Michael Jackson.

Solid American Idol Performances

  • Scott MacIntyre delivered a beautiful piano version of “Keep the Faith”.  Even though his vocals are pretty weak, he does have the talent to pull you into the emotion of the song.
  • Meagan Joy Corkery showed me something tonight.  Even though she is a complete goof who cannot dance, I heard some vocal prowess I had not heard before.  Next week she needs to drop the quirky cool and deliver a big vocal.

Ho Hum Performances

  • Matt Giraud disappointed me again this week.  He is not going to get many choices to flex his R&B rhythmic muscles like he had with the Michael Jackson catalogue.  Though his piano version of “Human Nature” was pretty good, it was uneven.  He needs to begin showing himself or he could be in trouble soon.
  • Jasmine Murray sang “I’ll Be There”.  She has a great voice, but I am not really interested.  She really brought nothing to the song.

I Just Don’t Get It

  • The judges absolutely love Adam Lambert.  I don’t.  Not even a little bit.  He sang “Black & White”.  His vocals were spectacular, if a little over the top.  However, his performance was just nothing for me.  It is like Jimi Hendrix and Robin Trower.  Robin mastered all of the notes, chords and riffs on his guitar,Robin Trower could play the guitar.  Jimi Hendrix was a Guitar Player (with a capital” G” and a capital “P”).

Big Disappointments

  • Jorge Nunez sang “Never Can Say Goodbye” and it was tepid.  I think his language barriers are going to cause him to struggle to keep the pace.
  • Anoop Desai stumbled through “Beat It”.  What happened to Anoopdawg?


Who knows.  Ryan hinted at some secret change American Idol is going to make in how the Season 8 results are tabulated.  They had better be careful.  They do not want to undermine America’s ownerhsip of this show. Here is my take:

  • Jorge Nunez is gone
  • Jasmine Murray should be gone
  • I would be surprised but not shocked if Anoop Desai or Matt Giraud were voted off.
  • I think there is a chance Michael Sarver could be voted off but I would be shocked.  It is not his time.

At this stage, dialidol cannot provide us meaningful predictions.  According to dialidol, nine of the 13 competitors are in danger of going home.

I will be back on Wednesday night with my analysis of the American Idol Season 8 Top 13 results show.

In the meantime, download the live performance or the studio recordings of your favorite performances from tonight’s American Idol.  Just click below.

Apple iTunes

American Idol Season 8 Top 13 Performance Live Blog

We are live, blogging the start of the American Idol Season 8 Finals live show.  At One21music we are covering the six Christian music artists competing in Season 8: Danny Gokey, Matt Giraud, Lil Rounds, Scott MacIntyre, Kris Allen and Michael Sarver.   Read my power rankings article to see how these Christian music artists stack-up against the rest of the field.

The American Idol finalists will be singing the songs of Michael Jackson tonight.  It looks to be a minefield.  See my article about song choice for each of the American Idol contestants. I think there are only two or three contestants (Lil Rounds, Matt Giraud, Anoop Desai) who can perform these songs straight-up, so we will probably see some disastrous performances.  It is also risky to try to adapt theses songs because only a few (Danny Gokey, Kris Allen, Matt Giraud) have demonstrated the arranging or interpretive skills to bend these songs to themselves.  I think American Idol Season 8 faves Meagan Joy (rumor is that she dropped the Corkery and is using her maiden name), Allison Iraheta, Alexis Grace and Scott MacIntyre could struggle tonight.  On the other hand, might Jorge Nunez be the Latin Michael Jackson?  I am talking about the good Michael Jackson with the silver glove, not the Michael Jackson in exile.

Enough speculation let’s go to the American Idol Season 8 Finals!  It should be a quick show with 13 performances.

Boy the contestants look nervous, almost grim in the opening montage.  Bigger crowd, bigger stage, who will trip over the next step?

What is this live announcer intro of the judges?  Who cares.  Ryan has dressed for the occasion.  The stage looks good, live band and 500 fans in the audience.  Kara is sweating, I thought she was pro.  Good advice from Paula, “don’t let the stage consume you.”

Intro of the Top 13, does Lil get the money spot to close the show?

We are eliminating two contestants tonight.

Wow, the opening montage of MJ brings back what was so great about him.  What happened?

Lil Rounds starts us off?  These contestant bios are long.  “The Way You Make Me Feel” is not the song I would have chosen, but who cares.  This neophyte is a fully formed soul singer.  I will go buy this on iTunes now.  She is awesome, perfect!

What can the judges say?  Randy says she made the song new again,with a bluesy, old soul vibe.  Kara says she belongs on the radio now.  Of course, Simon thought it was okay.  He thought it was lazy.  I disagree.  Questions about her arrangement skills were answered tonight.

Scott MacIntyre, what can he do with this book of music that is completely out of his musical style?  He sings “Keep The Faith” and he is at his piano.  This is a Michael Jackson song?  Are we sure Scott did not write this song?  Not a perfect vocal but a great, great performance.  The gauntlet is thrown down.

The audience is going wild!  Kara is blown away that he just learned the song on piano this week.  I agree with Paula that it was magical.  Simon hates the song.  “It is fine being artistic, just not on this show.”  Simon admits it!  Simon and Randy think it was safe and old-fashioned.

Can Danny Gokey keep up the momentum?  They are going to go through an intro without mentioning his wife.  I am tired of the criticism he has been getting for American Idol exploiting his tragedy. Good.  He is singing “PYT”.  I am not excited about the song choice.  Danny throws down some rocking moves and creates a sing-a-long.  He can sing better than I thought.  I am surprised how these guys have taken these songs and made them their own.  We see the new, rocking Danny Gokey.  That was fantastic.  Kara says he has joy.  We know he does, don’t we.

Michael Sarver is walking around the oil field in his dancing shoes.  I think he may surprise everyone tonight.  He is singing “You Are Not Alone”, a great song.  He shows a lot of soul in this performance.  A good, if not great vocal performance but the audience will love him.  He will be back.  Great job, Michael.

Simon loves this guy.  He says he is not a great singer but loves his heart and passion.  Randy says he is one of the best.  Kara loved the vocal.

Four singers in and the competition is strong.  No one can afford to stumble.  The last 9 better come strong.  Great show so far.

Jasmine Murray steps to the stage next.  She better bring it bigger than she did during the semi’s and the Wild Card.   This Mississippi beauty queen is singing “I’ll Be There” a perfect song for her that I bet the judges criticize.  Nice vocal, maybe a little off key in parts.  Problem is she does not bring the excitement we have seen in the first four performances.  It was her best so far, but only okay tonight.

Of course, Randy remixed that with Mariah and he liked it?, “not that bad”?  The judges are luke warm.  I disagree with Kara that she has great stage presence.  Simon call it a good attempt that was a little bit robotic.  I agree.

Will Kris Allen do “Man In The Mirror” again?  That will be dangerous.  There is a large catalogue of songs he can use to his talents.  Based on what we have seen so far, he better capture the stage and win the TV audience.  With his guitar he is singing “Remember The Time”.  I would not have used guitar on this song.  Cool, jazzy take on this song.  His vocals are stronger than I remembered.  He is totally comfortable up there.  Great stage presence. Tonight has been great, great tonight.

Kara calls him out as a good guy, like we are surprised.  I agree with Paula that he is engaging, I will pass on the sexy part.  Simon thought it was a little clumsy with the guitar.  Randy thought it was cool with the guitar, sort of like Jason Mraz.  Maybe like Jason Castro?

Allison Iraheta is a 16 year-old who sings at department stores.  Tonight she sings “Give Into Me” like Heart.   Well, more like Allison.  She is a big, old blues singer.  Wow, she is incredible.  From the department store to the big stage.  This girl is chill.

She boggles Paula’s mind.  I agree that she is a rock star.  I agree with Simon that she has the confidence.  Randy loves her, “if you got it, you got it”.

Anoopdog is rocking the “Thriller” swing going into the break.  He isn’t, is he?  Does he get zombies on stage?

Can Anoop Desai recover from two okay performances?  He is, I cannot believe he is taking on “Beat It”.  This is called swinging for the fences.  I was wrong in suggesting he sing this song.  “Beat It” loses something without MJ’s high pitch.  I don’t think he was up to this song.  This is the first let down of the night.

The judges will use the word karaoke.  According to Paula “Beat It” is untouchable and his performance was karaoke. Simon says it was horrible and lightweight.  Will all four use the word? Not Kara, she breaks the string.  I think he is in trouble.

Don’t forget to download these performance on iTunes.  We will give you the icon to use below.

Jorge Nunez is singing another soft ballad “Never Can Say Goodbye”.  This song is kind of boring compared to the other songs we have heard.  The singing is a little off.  Ho hum.

Randy hates it, but just cannot bring himself to say so.  Randy and Kara and Paula  think this was the wrong song.   Simon is writing him off.  He thought it was awful.

The show started great.  It seems to be losing steam.  Someone needs to dazzle us soon.  I am not sure Meagan is the one to dazzle.

Nice intro video for her.  The puppet, Megan, is it Joy, or is it Corkery is onstage to sing  “Rockin’ Robin”.  Sassy vocals but dancing  that would make Brooke White feel better about herself .  She is goofy!  That was fun.

Paula and Kara were lukewarm.  Simon was not.  He thought it was stupid.  Randy hates the song choice.

Fasten your seat belts, Adam Lambert is singing “Black & White”.  This is an interesting song choice.  He is singing the song fantastically, but does he even know what he is singing?  He hits every note but does not connect with the meaning of the song.  Do we get hair metal screams every week?

Paula is dazzled.  I don’t understand what they see.  According to Paula the finals will be Danny and Adam.  Simon thinks he is in a totally different league?  They all love him.  I know he can sing, but I just don’t get their love for him.

They better hurry, we have two more performances, plus the close in the next fifteen minutes.

Matt Giraud better knock this out of the park.  This is his music so my expectations are high.  He sings “Human Nature” from his piano.  I think he is missing an opportunity to dazzle America with his R&B chops.  His falsetto is not strong enough to carry as much of the song as he tried.  It was okay.

Randy and Kara and Paula love it.  Simon thought it was a solid, good performance.  They rush through Matt’s judges so they can force another commercial in.

Evidently there is something funky about Alexis’s number.  Pay attention.  She shouldn’t go home because people are calling the wrong number.

Alexis Grace sneeks into the end singing “Dirty Diana”.  Will she bring a blues take on it?  Yes she does and she does it big.  She is much better than in the semis.  She is answering my questions. Great command of the stage, great rocking, bluesy vocals.  Everything Adam is trying to be.

Sweaty Kara likes her naughty side, but Simon and Randy don’t like it very much.

Very good show.  Much better than I thought.  Great job guys.

I will go back and watch the performances and write a wrap-up. Check it out in the morning.

Join us tomorrow night. We will report on the results show.  Ryan is talking about some change in how the results will be determined.

Tonight, enjoy the performances.  Download them from iTunes below.

Apple iTunes

American Idol Season 8 Wild Card Predictions

As I expressed in last night’s blog of the results show I am extremely disappointed in the American Idol judges’ “Wild Card” picks.  I think reader Jimbo was right when he said the judges had their minds made up before Tuesday night and ignored Week 3′s performances.

We are covering Christian music artists competing in American idol Season 8 and we are happy that Matt Giraud and Ricky Braddy made it to the Wild Card round.  However, there were some real travesties:

  • Felicia Barton should have made it over Jessica Langseth.  The problem for Felicia now is that she did not get a chance to show anything new so I am not sure the American Idol experience will jump start her career.  That is a shame because I think she is the total package.
  • It is a crime that Jasmine Murray is in and Mishavonna Henson is out.  Misahvonna delivered a mature, confident performance and Jasmine looked overwhelmed.  I think Mishavonna will become an artist of substance in the future and I am pretty sure that does not impress these judges.
  • Ju’not Joyner was robbed.  He should be in the Wild Card over Von Smith.  I suspect that a number of R&B producers are trying to find Ju’not’s number right now.
  • If you want someone quirky and a little dramatic, how do you pick Tatiana del Toro over Kristen McNamara?  Kristen is a better singer and delivered a more unique performance in the American Idol semifinals.  I wonder where this leaves Kristen.  She has been working at this since she was 16.  Nashville Star and, now, American Idol did not produce the breakthrough she needed.  Where does she go from here?

Here are my rankings of the American Idol Season 8 Wild Card contestants based on everyhting I have seen:

  1. Anoop Desai
  2. Ricky Braddy
  3. Meagan Corkery
  4. Matt Giraud
  5. Tatiana del Toro
  6. Jessica Langseth
  7. Von Smith
  8. Jasmine Murray

Here are my predictions for tonight’s American Idol Season 8 Wild Card show.

I will be shocked if more than one guy is selected from this group.  There are already six guys in the Top 12 and I cannot see the producers allowing American Idol to go into the finals with anything more that a 7:5 ratio.  I think that makes it virtually impossible for Christian music artists Ricky Braddy and Matt Giraud to make it through.  Anoop Desai has been an overwhelming judge favorite from the start and his Semi-final performance was good just not good enough.  I think both Matt and Ricky can perform well enough to make it hard on the judges but I think Anoop needs to disappoint for them to have a chance.

These predictions are in the order of my confidence level:

  • Meagan Corkery would have to trip on her way to the stage, hit her head, sing a different song than the band is playing, forget the lyrics and have a “wardrobe malfunction” to miss the Top 12.  The judges have all but said she is a finalist.
  • Anoop Desai is not bulletproof but he will need a disappointing performance and a “blow it out da’ box” performance from Matt Giraud, Ricky Braddy or Von Smith to go home tonight.  I think Matt is the only one capable of that type of show stopping performance.  Hey Matt, you got nothing to lose, go for it.
  • Tatiana del Toro will overcome Jessica Langseth.  I think Jessica is a better mucisian but American Idol needs the ratings that the manic, frightening, personality Tatiana brings.  What the heck, they need to give the “Vote for The Worst” guys someone to champion.

Join us tonight while we live blog the American Idol Season 8 Wild Card show.

In the meantime give some love to Christian music artists Felcia Barton, Mishavonna Henson and Kristen Mcnamara by downloading their performances from iTunes with a simple click on the icon below.

Apple iTunes

American Idol Season 8, Round Three Results Show

Well, round 3 performances were pretty good last night. Going into the night I was not sure what to expect.  Except for Lil Rounds, none of these competitors had received much coverage on American Idol Season 8. Sure we had the drama of Kristen McNamara and Nathanial Marshall in that horrible group competition show, but that did not show who they were as performers.  Last night did not have the blow out performances like Danny Gokey in round one or Allison Iraheta in round two but 9 of the 12 performances were solid and many were very good.

Indicative of the balance in the show last night, the web opinions were all over the place.  After Lil Rounds, the next six ranked performers went from 2 to 10 in the rankings.

One21 Music is covering Christian music artists competing on American Idol Season 8.  Last night Kristen MacNamara, Felicia Barton and Scott MacIntyre performed in the round 3 of the semi finals.  Felicia brought her a game with Alicia Keys “No One”.  Kristen delivered a strong, jazzy , but disconnected version “Give Me One Reason”  Scott sang a boring (probably the song) but heart-felt version of “Mandolin Rain”.

To recap my predictions

Top Girl: Lil Rounds

Top Guy: Scott MacIntyre

Next Top Vote Getter: Felicia Barton

Is it just me or are the group numbers better this year.  I kind of like tonight’s group performance.

So as Ryan says lets get to the votes.

Top girl: Lil Rounds, they started with her, I guess they knew it was stupid to try to wring drama out of this pick.  She encores “I Never Wanna Live Without You”.   What can I say?  She is a really good singer.  I think she will need a really good mentor to make an impact in the business.  I think she is gone before we get to Season 8 Top 5.

Top guy: Scott MacIntyre seemed truly humbled by making it to the Top 12.  Unfortunately, he had to sing that song again.  Maybe he will bring a different vibe next week. As I was righting this he was singing and I just got Scott.  He brought me chills. Congratulations, Scott, good luck.  American Idol can use some artistic depth among all of the bombastic plastic (I rhymed!).

Next Highest: So it came down to Ju’not and Jorge. Jorge Nunez’s passionate delivery of “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down on Me” won America’s hearts last night.  They delayed Jorge’s victory song until after they revealed the “Wild Card” selections.  It is probably a good thing.  I think he was too emotional to sing in English.

We now have four Christian performers through to the Top 12: Scott MacIntyre, Kris Allen, Michael Sarver and Danny Gokey.

And American Idol did not make us wait to find out who performs in the “Wild Card”.  Here are Season 8′s Wild Cards:

  • Von Smith
  • Meagan Corkery
  • Ricky Braddy
  • Jasmine Murray
  • Tatiana del Toro
  • Matt Giraud
  • Jessica Langseth
  • Anoop Desai

I am really bummed, I think Ju’not, Felicia and Mishavonna got hosed.  They were all better than Jasmine Murray, Jessica Langseth and Von Smith.  I am really surprised they balanced it between the genders.  Well, at least Christian music performers Matt Giraud and Ricky Braddy made it to their second chance.  Make the best of it guys.

Of these Wild Card performers, I guarantee that Megan Corkery goes through and I would be shocked if Anoop Desai goes home tomorrow night.  After that, who knows?

Brush up on these Wild Cards by downloading their performances with a simple click on the icon below.

Apple iTunes

and join us as we live blog the two hour Wild Card show tomorrow night to find out who makes American Idol’s Season 8 finals.

American Idol Semifinals, Round 2 Wrap-up

I don’t know what to say.  That is just an expression don’t you know.  I always know something to say.  I know these are really good singers.  I have been dazzled by many of them, yet they take this step to live television and they seem to fall apart.  I have only seen two performances so far in Round 2 that equals what these performers did during Hollywood week.

As you know by now we are covering the Christian music artists competing in American Idol Season 8.  None of Wednesday night’s three Christian music artists exceeded expectations, but that was par for the show.

Matt Giraud was the first to perform and, to be frank, I think he squandered his position as one of the favorites.  This funky soul singer chose “Viva La Vida”.  He tried to squeeze some soul out of a soaring, Anglo, concert performance anthem.  It just did not work.  In pushing the song, Matt’s vocals became shaky and he struggled to bring the song to life.  The judges pretty much agreed.  I hope he built up enough goodwill during American Idol’s Hollywood Week to get a Wild Card chance.

Kris Allen followed a few performers later, singing Michael Jackson’s “Man In The Mirror”.  He showed a lot of soul for a southern white protestant.  After watching it again, I think he was one of the three best male performances.  While he did not make us forget Michael Jackson, he sang the song very well and displayed some very good stage presence.  He looked quite comfortable without his guitar.  I think by the time he performed the judges had worked themselves into a negative moog and were supportive of Kris, but lukewarm on his performance.

Mishavonna Henson finished off the triumvirate of Christian music artists on tonight’s episode of American Idol.  She sang “Drops of Jupiter” by Train and I think she gave the second best performance of the night.  She is a very good singer, with good stage presence.  She owned the song, but did not do anything crazy with it.  I think for me, she just showed us that there is something very deep in this girl’s talent.  The judges spent most of their time talking about how old she presented herself and that they want her to act more her age.  I think they missed a strong, subtle performance.

Here is how I would rank the performances on American Idol’s Semifinal Round 2:

Allison Iraheta- No one was even close to this performance.  A show stopper!

Mishavonna Henson- As I said above, a commanding, subtle performance.

Kai Kalama- A very soulful performance of an old standard

Kris Allen- Another soulful performance that was a little funkier than Kalama’s

Adam Lambert- An undeniable vocal talent that is way over the top

Meagan Corkery- Quirky, but unstable performance of “Put Your Records On”

Jessica Langseth- When will she unleash that voice?

Nick Western/Norman Gentle- Made a complete mockery of the show, terrible vocals, but I never stopped smiling.  Gets my vote for calling Simon “sassy pants”

Matt Giruad- In trying to make something out of “Viva La Vida” that is not there he stumbled.

Jasmine Murray- Never really found her way in “Love Song”

Matt Breitzke- He just never brought anything to the mid tempo rocker he sang.

Jeanine Vailes- she just did not have it tonight.

Here are my predictions for who will move on to the Top 12 in American Idol Season 8:

Top guy: Adam Lambert

Top girl:Allison Iraheta (if there is any justice)

Next top:  I don’t know.  It could be any of five (Mishavonna, Kai, Kris, Meagan, Nick)

DialIdol predicts winners from week to week by monitoring busy signals.  Last week they got it 100% right.  I want everyone to know that everything above this point was written last night.  I made my predictions without benefit of DialIdol.  Here is what they have to say about the winner of American Idol Season8 Semifinal’s Round 2 and it is pretty amazing.  Adam Lambert will be the top guy, not a surprise.  Allison Iraheta will be the top girl, as she should be.  They will both win by large margins.  The surprise is the neck and neck race between Matt Giraud and Jessica Langseth.   I guess it really pays to get a lot of face time during the early rounds.

I think both Kris and Mishavonna have a chance to be invited to the wild card round, along with Meagan Corkery and whoever loses out between Matt G and Jessica.

American Idol Season 8- Feb 25 Live Blog

Well, here we are for week two of the American Idol Season 8 semi-finals.  We will see how tonight’s performances stack-up to last week’s pretty sorry showing.   It is all about song choice, song choice,  song choice.  Last week I heard too much, “I was trying to show a different side of me”.  Remember, tonight is your audition for America, give us your best shot.

At One21music, we are covering Christian music artists competing on America Idol Season 8.  Tonight we have three singers who have declared themselves believers: Kris Allen, Mishavonna Henson and Kris Allen.  It is going to be a tough night for them with some strong competition from Adam Lambert, Jessic Langseth and Jasmine Murray.

So here we go!

Ryan has dumped the Mr. Rogers look and is wearing a decidedly summer outlook.   Danny, Alexis and Michael are in the audience.  He introduces  Randy, Kara, Paula and Simon.   After a little judge banter he explains this season’s format and away we go  with Adam Lambert .

It is the Billboard Hot 100 again tonight.

And, to start the night, Jasmine Murray is singing “Love Song” by Sara Bareilles.  I really like this song.  A slow pitchy start and she struggles with this song that is wrong for her voice.  I don’t think it shows her strengths as a singer.  She seems to take the song over at the end, but the singing is still all over the place.

Randy doesn’t really like it, wrong song.  Paula says “Jasmine, Jasmine” and that is bad.  Simon says she does not have a great voice and is hurt when he gets booed.  He even says she is not ready.

Yeah! No parents tonight?

Coming back from commercial we get  Matt Giraud, the second of our featured performers tonight is singing “Viva La Vida” by Coldplay.  Really, Matt, did you not watch the show last week?  If you pull this off you will solidify your position as one of the favorites and  saunters up to the mike and starts very smoothly.  The song doesn’t go anywhere and he really doesn’t take it anyplace new.   The singing is all over the place.  He didn’t pull it off.

Kara starts it off and she is not blown away.  SONG CHOICE!  Simon says horrible performance, jerky, uncomfortable.

I like the new rotating judge cycle.

Jeanine Vailes is singing “This Love” by Maroon 5, she brings a little reggae vibe, but she is really struggling to sing it.   What is she wearing?  Cut-offs and a blazer?  This performance is really bad.

Paula follows the philosophy of if you cannot say something good, say nothing.   Simon does not know that philosophy.  They do all love her legs but hate the song choice.  Randy says “best of the part of the song is that it is over.”  Randy lobs several bombs at her.

Thank you American Idol for losing the creepy upper room interviews.

Nick Mitchell (Norman Gentle) is performing  “And I Am Tellling You I’m Not Going” from Dreamgirls as Norman Gentle!  This is great!  He gets my wild card!  He misses all of the big notes but who cares.

Simon is speechless.  Simon prays? [that he does not go through].  Norman takes the stage back calling Simon sassy pants.  Randy gets is right “one of the most entertaining performances ever”.   Kara  and Paula enjoyed it and everyone is smiling.

Allison Iraheta is next performing “Alone” by Heart.  This is a song that makes me want to forget the 80′s.  I think she may have the worst hair color I have ever seen.  It makes my eyes hurt.   Good start, very soulful and steady, but now the hard part and, wow girl!  Where did that big growl come from?  I think the best girl performance of the season so far.  Awesome!

And we get yo’s from Randy, “you just blew it out the box”.   I agree with Kara, “this girl is serious”.  Simon is smiling naming her the best tonight by a mile.  I think her mom is going to pass out.

Kris Allen, a worship leader/ college student, is one of our featured performers. He will be singing “Man In The Mirror” by Michael Jackson.  He is completely off pitch, can he pull it back?  The song is eating him up.   Toward the end he is showing off his soulful side but overall, I don’t know.

Kara hated it, But the other three liked it.

Megan Corkery is singing “Put Your Records On” by Corrine Bailey Rae.  This girl has a soulful voice but is struggling to get the high notes.  She kind of looks like a marionette up there.  It is okay.

Paula loves her.  I agree with Simon that she over sang the second half of the song.  The jusdges lover her but were lukewarm on the performance.

Kara does not think this showed his talent, but Paula liked it.  She said he nailed it and Simon agrees!  Randy likes him as well.  Very nice!

Matt Breitzke, the welder, is singing “If You Could Only See” by Tonic.  Nice shirt.  He is singing kind of weird at the first.  I don’t know this song, is that how the Tonic guys sing it.  It is okay, but nothing that blows us away.  Kind of boring.

Simon is trying to be nice but absolutely hates that song.  Randy likes the song but thinks the performance was boring.  There are some contestants that the judges really seem to like.  No of them liked this.

Jesse Langseth, one of the favorites, is stepping up to sing “Betty Davis Eyes” by Kim Carnes and what is she doing?  Her voice is all over the place.  Good stage presence and she is beginning to pick it up at the end.  She is very soulful, but just okay tonight.

Randy thinks it is only okay, but not really big enough.  Paula finds her captivating  with unique phrasing.  But Simon thinks she is forgettable.  “Too cool for school?”  Really, Simon?

Kai Kalama kicks off the last half hour with 60′s tune  “What Becomes of a Broken Heart” by Jimmy Ruffen, a great, great soul song.  And it looks like we have a soul singer singing it.  Great pacing, nice big notes.  He is actually taking a very cool song a performing it.  Very good.

Judges are lukewarm using “old fashioned”,”wedding singer” and “pitchy” as descripters.  Randy is screaming at the contestants about being safe.

Mishavonna Henson, one our featured Christian music artists, is singing  “Drops of Jupiter” by Train.  Very nice start with this soulful, contemporary song.  Oh, very, very nice.   She is showing off a big voice and is really controlling the song.  Good job, Mishavonna, but no “oh wow” part.

Paula’s not exciting and Simon has been left cold.  He thinks she acts too old.  They all think she was a little boring and not as vibrant as she should be.

Adam Lambert closes the show singing “Satisfaction” by the Rolling Stones, as musical theater.  I don’t know.  This dude can sing but this feels like and Elvis impersonator covering the Stones.  But he does have, as Randy would say, “a big old voice.  Can anybody say Hair Metal cover band?

Paula loves it beyond words.  Is he really in a league of his own, Paula?  Simon is a little more mixed.  Randy drops “da bomb”.  Kara is going all crazy about his range.

Mostly disappointing tonight.  One big standout, Allison Iraheta.

I am afraid that our Christian music artists did not stand out tonight but let’s see.

Check back in the morning for my wrap-up and predictions.  It will be on your desktop by the time any normal person gets to work.

American Idol Live on One21music- Wednesday, Feb 25

Who does this Barack Obama think he is?  I have heard he thinks he has a mandate from the American people, but let me assure you Mr. President that your mandate does not extend to interrupting American Idol.  Deliver the State of the Union on Thursday night.  Survivor is a tired franchise and Grissom has left CSI.

This week, Wednesday is American Idol night and One21music will be live blogging the second semi-final episode of American Idol Season 8.

Last week, two contestants we have identified as Christian music artists, Danny Gokey and Michael  Sarver, were voted through to the Final 12.  Read our coverage here. To recap, American Idol Season 8 started viewer voting with 36 contestants.  For three weeks, they perform in groups of 12.  Each week the top male and female vote getters, along with the next highest vote getter go straight to the finals.  After those three weeks are completed, the judges will select a group from the remaining 27 to compete one more time for the final three spots in the Final 12.

At One21music we are covering Christian music artists who are competing on American Idol’s Season 8.

Wednesday night our live blog will feature Matt Giraud, Mishavonna Henson and Kris Allen.

Kris is a worship leader from Arkansas.  He has not received much airtime but he was part of the group White Chocolate from Hollywood Week that performed the rapping, beatboxing version of “I Want You Back”.  Kris is a college student who leads worship at his church, for his on-campus ministry organization and on mission trips around the world.

Matt is the dueling piano player and singer/songwriter from Michigan.  He has released two R&B recordings with strong Christian messages.  He was part of White Chocolate as well and seemed to take leadership in arranging their performance.

Mishavonna is an 18 year-old singer, songwriter and actress from California.  We have not seen much of her so far, but she made it to Hollywood week in Season 7.  She has won awards at national youth group conferences and sings for her local church.

All three face some tough competition. Jasmine Murray is a terrific singer who seems to be the “it teenager” this year. Adam Lambert is a very theatrical singer with a great voice.  And of course there is the most interesting contestant I have ever seen on American Idol, Nick Western (a.k.a. Norman Gentle).  Western seems to be a good singer but who really cares.  This guy makes me laugh.

I like the new format, it makes each of these four shows seem like the final.

I hope the contestants learned from last week’s show.  This is the first time America wil really see you.  Don’t try to show “another” side of yourself as a performer.  Bring the best you got and worry about versatility later.

Christian music artists performing on Wednesday’s American Idol

Kris Allen



Matt Giraud



Mishavonna Henson



 The remainder of the Final 36 on American Idol’s Season 8:

  • Adam Lambert
  • Allison Iraheta
  • Jasmine Murray
  • Jessica Langseth
  • Kai Kalama
  • Matt Breitzke
  • Megan Corkrey
  • Nick Western (a.k.a. Norman Gentle)
  • Jeanine Vailes

This is a tough group so it should be an exciting show.  Join us while we live blog on Wednesday.