Friday, March 30, 2007

Sligh Wanted to Quit American Idol

In his exit interview with the media yesterday, Chris Sligh admitted some surprising things, but probably the biggest surprise of all was that he had wanted to quit the "American Idol" competition.

Here are some quotes from that interview:

On his losing momentum since the beginning of the show: You know, I never came into this wanting to win it. I come from an indie, alternative-rock background, and I think winning "American Idol" would hurt what I was really going for. And I think what kind of solidified it in my mind was when I was universally trashed for my arrangement of [Diana Ross'] "Endless Love." I kind of thought, "This isn't really the competition for me." I actually almost dropped out that week. I went to the guy from 19 [Productions, the company behind "Idol"], and I was like, "If I drop out when I get to the top 10, can I still be on tour?" They were like, "No, you have to get voted out."

On whether he ever wanted to win: I mean, there is that competitive side of me that kind of kicks in. After that top 12 performance, I kind of took some time to decompress and talk to some people that I trusted, and then I came out and I was like, "I want to do it on my own terms, and if that means that I get cut early, then that means I get cut early." With "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic," it definitely was a riskier choice, but I feel like one of the things that was a little frustrating was that if you look through the six songs I did on the show, all six songs were risks in one way or another. I felt like that was ignored, and really the judges never commented on my voice and that was frustrating for me.

On whether it is possible to compete on Idol and joke about it at the same time: I kind of wonder that myself. ... It's funny because I love the show but at the same time there are some cheesy aspects that I poked fun at. And there are people that love the show so much that anything that is bad said about the show or especially if you say something bad about Simon [Cowell] ... there are people that will literally write you hate mail. People telling me they'd hope I would die because I told Simon I didn't sound like Teletubbies. So it kind of freaked me out, because I was like, "Wow, people take 'American Idol' very, very seriously." I would hope people would realize that me joking around about the show is very tongue-in-cheek because I can't be too upset with "American Idol" if they are making me famous.

On Sanjaya: I think that people underestimate Sanjaya [Malakar]. I think Sanjaya is actually a very good vocalist. I mean, if you go to and you download his songs or even just listen to a preview, he has a good voice. I think he is just 17 years old. I mean, when I was 17 years old, I didn't know how to sing in a live situation. I think that he is a very, very sweet kid and I have a lot of respect for him and I do not envy his position at all.

On struggling with his final song, The Police's "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic": When I sang with Gwen [Stefani], that was on Saturday, and I just picked that song out on Friday afternoon and had changed my song. I originally was going to do "Give a Little Bit" by Supertramp, and the Goo Goo Dolls redid it recently. But I really wanted to challenge myself a little bit more than "Give a Little Bit." I had never really looked at the music [for "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic"] and had never really actually even listened to the song, so I never realized that it was going to be quite that much of a challenge. Then by the time I got to rehearsals on Monday, I had started to get the rhythm down a little bit, and actually I went back and listened to my performance from Tuesday probably about 10 or 15 times, and it wasn't a great performance, but honestly it wasn't as bad as the judges made it seem.

On his bet with Phil Stacey: I just had this feeling in my heart that I was going home. Pretty much no one gets away from being trashed like I was on Tuesday night unscathed. I told Phil that I was going home and he was like, "There is no way you are going home before me." And I said, "Dude, I bet you 50 bucks I'm going home." And he took me up on it, and I won.

On whether he will rejoin his band, Half Past Forever: Yeah, when I get back to South Carolina. They put out a CD before I tried out, and we were getting record-label interest before "American Idol," so doors should open up for us.

Some other bits and pieces from the interview:

"I made the Top Ten. That was my goal."

"I wanted to make the tour. I wanted to be able to make music for my living, so I don't have to work at the marketing company that I was working at."

He talked about being kicked out of Christian fundamentalist college Bob Jones University for attending a contemporary Christian concert featuring the group For Him. He enrolled at another Christian school, North Greenville University, and is three credits shy of a music degree. Leaving Bob Jones "was actually good, because I had been trying to figure out how to leave," he said.

Sligh is scheduled to appear on the show's May 24 finale, but for now he plans to return home to his wife and his church, where hundreds of people gather each week to hear him play his electric guitar and sing as part of services. "I definitely am looking forward to getting back home and kind of having a normal life for a few weeks," he said.

Malakar's pony-hawk hair-do this week was killer, "I could never pull that off. I give Sanjaya props for pulling that off."

Sligh said since he wasn't able to hold or play his guitar, his rhythm - a frequent criticism of the judges - was thrown off. He also said that since he wasn't allowed to perform his own music, he felt forced to take "pop songs that sound great at four minutes and stuff it into a minute and a half."

He implicitly acknowledged that his "Hi Dave!" shout-out on last week's show was aimed at the founder of ("I don't know if I should answer that question," he told a reporter while chuckling), but was quick to say he regretted the move. "It was a poor choice because certain people took it as disrespect for the show," Sligh said. "Sometimes with a snarky sense of humor, it can come across as that, but I sincerely didn't mean that ... it was stupid."


Season 5 finalist Kellie Pickler will be doing double duty for CMT. First, she will host "The 2007 CMT Music Awards Video of the Year Special" on April 9. The show will give fans a closer look at the eight videos nominated for Video of the Year the 2007 CMT Music Awards.

Pickler, a CMT Music Awards nominee, also will be a presenter at the show, which airs live on April 16 from Nashville's Curb Event Center at Belmont University. Jeff Foxworthy hosts. Other presenters include Barbara Mandrell, Jason Aldean, Josh Turner, LeAnn Rimes, Stone Cold Steve Austin and Taylor Swift. Season 4 winner Carrie Underwood will perform, as will Dierks Bentley, Keith Urban from Australia, Kenny Chesney, Martina McBride, Rascal Flatts, Sugarland, Toby Keith and Bon Jovi.


The Washington Post reports that Paula Abdul was one of the attendees at a fundraiser for New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's run for the White House. About 700 invitees paid $2,300 each to dine with Clinton at the Beverly Hills estate of supermarket magnate Ron Burkle. About 250 of those guests coughed up an additional $2,300 per person to attend a pre-dinner VIP reception where the senator from New York posed with donors for photographs. Other attendees included Barbra Streisand and her husband, James Brolin, Ted Danson, Motown founder Berry Gordy and a host of media industry executives. The event raised a whopping $2.6 million for the Democratic presidential wannabe.

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2007

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Why Sligh?

(Results show story in earlier posting below) ...

It is obvious that we were disappointed to see Chris Sligh eliminated from the competition, but he just never seemed to live up to his potential on "Idol," especially for those of us who have seen what kind of great music "chubby" can produce. Not to beat a dead contestant, er, horse, but here's one last pitch for our readers who haven't before looked to check out the first video for the band Chris leads and is the main songwriter for, Half Past Forever. You can listen to more album clips here. We especially love "In a Moment" and "Know." And we love them for the music as much as for the vocals. They're a good band with great potential.

By this week, Chris seemed almost ready for defeat. He faced the judges like a beaten dog and only weakly defended himself. Maybe he wanted to go home at this point. We did think that he left with dignity, especially going over and hugging his fellow contesants as he sang his way out last night. Although we did wonder why Phil Stacey said to him, "I owe you 50 bucks" as they embraced. Sounds as if they had a wager on who was and wasn't leaving (probably Phil thought he was and he did come damn close for the second time).


... Why the hell was Akon there to "accompany" Gwen Stefani if he wasn't allowed to do his rap? He stood around looking like window dressing, contributing less to the song than the backup singers. Are the producers that scared to introduce any hip-hop or rap to Idol? Scared of alienating Mr. & Mrs. Middle America? What a waste. There's been tons of that type of music on "So You Think You Can Dance" and it has only attracted larger audiences. Not that "Idol" is in any danger yet (as Nigel Lythgoe has said, they could lose half their audience and still be in the Top 3), but the show has been losing ratings all season -- this week's performance show had 12 percent less viewers than last week's two-hour performance show -- and eventually the producers will have to try something new to keep their old viewers, or attract new ones. Trying to threaten "Dancing With the Stars" by running over into the time period for its results show had little, if any, effect. "Dancing" garnered the biggest ratings for any of its results show ever this past Tuesday. So is this the first chink in "Idol's" mighty armor?

... Is it just us, or is anybody else getting tired of the endless amount of commercials -- wrapped as programming -- inside the Idol results shows? We read that nearly 15 minutes of the results shows are devoted to advertising if you include the appeals to buy the MP3s on the "American Idol" site, the lame weekly viewer multiple-choice call-in contest and the pleas to corporate America to get behind "Idol Gives Back." And that doesn't even include the weekly celebrity performance which is shameless promotional payback to hawk the mentors' new CDs or tours. Each results show has approximatey 5-7 minutes of actually programming, and yesterday Fox announced that a number of future results shows -- on April 11, April 18 and May 2 -- will be increased to an hour in length. We can't, ahem, wait.

CHRIS RICHARDSON'S SHOWMANCE? reports that "American Idol" semi-finalist Alaina Alexander and finalist Chris Richardson may have sparked more than just a friendship on the show. An inside source revealed that the pair "hit it off instantly," and even after Alexander was voted off A.I. island, their relationship is afloat. TMZ said that what they share is "beyond just friends." It seems not to be a coincidence that the wannabeen Miss Alexander has a really sweet picture of the two on her MySpace page. Also adding fuel to the romance rumors ... last week when they panned the audience to show Richardson's adoring friends and family, Alaina just happened to be in the crew. "A.I." reps had "no comment."

IF IT WORKED FOR ANTONELLA ... had another recent story about Alaina, only it involved the somewhat revealing photos of her on her site:

"American Idol" castoff Alaina Alexander is showing off her other assets on her new MySpace music page. Her alleged music page features four songs she's laughably categorized as her "Greatest Hits," and like any good 'ol American idled wannabeen, she's added some racy pics over which her teen admirers may care to drool.

"Perhaps this little songbird should've flaunted that taut bod a little earlier in the singing contest. Like Haley Scarnato, whose singing puts one in the mind of performing televised tracheotomies, showing off her physical prowess might have kept her on the show until the inevitable vote-off."

So is Alaina upset about the story? Nah. The girl knows good publicity when she sees it. A posting on her blog even provides a link to the TMZ story and reads:

"Tuesday, March 27, 2007

TMZ!!!! what can I say........

Hello to all my peeps!!
First off wanna thank you for all the love and support. You make me soooo happy!!

Ok now lets get started on a little website called TMZ.For those of you who dont know about it, it gives the scoop on the juiciest celebrity gossip.I must admit, even I'm a sucker for the occasional celebrity scandal.

A little bird told me there was a recent article on me. "Wow me?".
So I checked it out. It talks a little about my myspace, my music.........then of course my pictures.Now people , is it really that bad to have some flirty but classy photos?.
I mean, I'm young, free spirited and just trying to have a little fun.
Can I get an Amen?
So check out the article and let me know what you think!
Once again thank you, all of you, for your love and support.

Click HERE to read it on TMZ!"


And lest we spare you from any muck, the site also had a field day ridiculing Sanjaya Malakar's ponyhawk on Tuesday's show (but who's laughing now? Not Chris Sligh), by saying he looked like the Road Runner from Looney Toons:

"From Diana Ross to Halle Berry, you never know whose weave will inspire "American Idol" wannabe Sanjaya Malakar. This week, his hairspiration was none other than Looney Tunes character, Road Runner. Acme Hair Spray, anyone? *beep beep*

Sanjaya's mindboggling pony-hawk was enough to almost distract from his butchering of No Doubt's "Bathwater." Almost. Unfortunately, a more appropriate song choice for Sanjaya would have been the power pop band's 90s hit, "Don't Speak," which Timberlake-alike Chris Richardson ravaged. *beep beep*

If Sanjaya survives another week, he's going to have a busy day in the studio -- the hair studio that is!

That's all folks!"


In a posting called "American Anti-Idol," Michael Bloxham writes on MediaPost's TV Board:

"This week is about viewer involvement in programming and the rich potential for subversion that exists. Having been weaned at the tender age of seven on the earliest episodes of “Monty Python” in the U.K. in 1969, I have to confess a deep-seated love of the subversive and that which pokes fun at the conventional wisdoms and practices of everyday life.

So, naturally, I find myself irresistibly drawn to (VFTW) — a Web site entirely based on the notion that if enough people vote for the crappiest singer, then “American Idol” can be way more fun. Interestingly, it’s a site that has developed something of a following — especially since Howard Stern got behind it and encouraged people to join in the subversion of the core format of the show.

First established in 2004, the site’s owners are claiming some degree of success and make a habit of targeting campaigns of tactical voting aimed at blocking the progress of those they think the producers want to win, by elevating those who appear to be there for pure (and excruciating) entertainment value.

Of course, whatever the motivation to vote, every vote cast still generates revenue for the program’s stakeholders, and it all goes to increasing the program’s social currency (though you may define it as counter-currency in this case).

It also suggests that maybe there’s a market among these sorts of talent / reality shows for the versions that bring together the worst rather than the best of previous contestants (less “American Idol All-Stars” and more “American Idol No-Hopers”) — probably not sustainable over a full series. But let’s face it, seeing the least talented people in the nation is a major reason for tuning into the audition rounds of the show.

If nothing else, VFTW is a great example of how a program can be extended by an audience in ways that the producers didn’t dream of, while still building an actively engaged community that quite probably wouldn’t be as engaged otherwise, thereby increasing the overall equity of the show.

Anyway, take a look at the site, have some fun and see if you can think of sites of a similar nature that other shows are crying out for but don’t yet have."

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2007

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Bye, Bye Sligh :(

Tuesday night, Chris Sligh sang “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic” on “American Idol,” but tonight it was apparent that his performance lacked the magic he needed to keep the public voting for him when he became the latest contestant eliminated from the singing competition.

Host Ryan Seacrest, who opened the show rocking a ponyhawk wig in a comic reference to the hairstyle worn by 17-year-old contestant Sanjaya Malakar the evening before, said that over 30 million votes had been cast on Tuesday. Haley Scarnato, who sang “True Colors,” and Phil Stacey, who performed “Every Breath You Take,” were the other two challengers who fell into the show’s “Bottom 3” this week.

After Stacey was told he was safe, but before announcing the final results, Seacrest asked judge Simon Cowell who he thought was going home. Cowell said “Bye, bye curly,” referring to Sligh’s wild afro-styled hair. Sligh, 28, of Greenville, S.C., who also is the lead singer of the band Half Past Forever, caused some controversy on last week’s program when he called out “Hi Dave” after his performance. It was an apparent shout-out to the Web site, which attempts to sabotage “American Idol” by encouraging the public to vote for the worst singer instead of their favorite one.

Gwen Stefani, whom Seacrest introduced as “the embodiment of style,” mentored the 10 finalists this week and performed “The Sweet Escape,” accompanied by Akon on tonight's show.

Next week Tony Bennett will mentor the nine remaining singers, as well as perform on Wednesday’s results show.

More tomorrow ...

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2007

No Doubt About the Top 10

So we learned more than ever that we should have cautioned our readers that spoilers change. After all, it is leaked inside information. Sometimes accurate and reputable, other times no so. The info on this week was partially right, but so much was wrong -- especially the part about bringing back one of the past 6 eliminated contestants for the tour. What a mess! We'll try to be more circumspect about jumping on spoilers we hear about in the coming weeks.

Gwen Stefani week, to use an obsolete Randyism was "aight." Nowhere as good as British Invasion week, but a bit better than Diana Ross Week. Stefani's advice to the contestants, as with the past mentors, was for the most part spot on. It's been a pleasant surprise to see how the mentoring idea has improved from year to year. Except for some of the girls, Stefani didn't seemed overwhelmed by the vocals and was honest about it, at least to the camera. Plus, we were shocked to see Stefani almost without makeup in the mentoring sessions -- certainly she wasn't rocking her usual bright red lips. She has a natural prettiness and it made us realize how hard her usual painted face looks.

Clothes have become a bit more interesting from week to week as the Idol stylists impose their suggestions on the contestants. This seemed to be boot week for the ladies -- three of the five sported them up to the knee, while all of the men except Phil rocked sneakers and all but Blake wore jeans. For us, there was no killer performance, although we'll call Melinda's the best of the evening. The pimp spot was wasted on Chris Richardson, but you can't put Melinda there every week, we guess. Actually Phil deserved it way more than Richardson did. And so it goes.

First up was LaKisha Jones, whose busy, multi-patterned dress and knee boots shouted "I am short." The simpler styles she wore earlier in the season flattered her stature (she's even shorter than Melinda) and weight more. Plus, the kimono-like V-neck top of the dress once again overexposed her well-endowed chest and, frankly, we're tired of looking at those puppies every week -- sorry, but they're hard to miss in the clothes she picks.

That LaKisha could sing Donna Summer's "Last Dance" was a no-brainer, but somehow it lacked excitement and fell flat for us, though it ended much better than its tentative beginning. But the judges thought it was great (we didn't agree much with the judges this week). Randy Jackson, who had a thing for the ladies' boots last night -- starting with LaKisha's -- was glad she picked an uptempo song and said "It's good to see you make a change and rock it," while Paula Abdul told her she did Donna Summer proud. Simon Cowell told LaKisha she was again 30 years younger (than how she looked and sounded last week) and that she was putting her mark back on the competition with a great vocal. Frankly, we think LaKisha is losing some of the magic she originally brought to the competition and hasn't grown one bit.

Chris Sligh proved to be a big disappointment and we're not only predicting that he'll land in the Bottom 3 this week, we'd guess he might even be eliminated. We expected so much more of his version of Sting's "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic." We expected, well, magic. Sligh was just going through the paces last night. As Stefani warned him, and the judges have attested to week after week, he was once more ahead of the music, or as they put it, he wasn't "staying in the pocket." And although he hasn't lost his sense of humor completely (he was kinda funny in his pre-performance viewer Q&A with Ryan Seacrest), he really seemed beaten down and apologetic when the judges criticized the performance. And criticize him they did, with Randy calling the performance a train wreck rhythm-wise and Simon telling him it was a mess (and getting justifiably peeved when his review was cut off by the Idol commercial music, saying "I'm not done yet" and "Not the Oscars." Ryan tried to be conciliatory telling Simon that he doesn't push the buttons [to which Simon mumbled, "yet"] and asked Simon if he had anything else to add). Paula tried to temper her critique with the mangled (English?) sentence "Vocally, it sat really nice in the tonal part of your voice so that was a good choice," adding "but man you've got to hear that beat." If Sligh's performance were a color this week, it would be a dull muddy brown. Even his choice of wardrobe looked haphazard and boring. As if he had thrown on whatever was lying around his room. And his promises to do better next week if given the chance are beginning to wear thin. We'd give him another shot, but we don't know if America will.

Gina Glocksen, who we thought might fall apart even more than last week, turned out to be the evening's very pleasant surprise with a beautifully sung rendition of The Pretenders "I'll Stand by You." We thought it was her best vocal performance to date -- a great song choice that sounded strong and confident throughout, without being pitchy. Appearance-wise, we didn't love the punked-out look, with its artfully ripped net stockings and tousled hair that looked merely uncombed. The boots might have looked better if they hadn'tbeen combined with the, well, ugly, snugly fit half slip-half dress, whose bizarre color combinations were thankfully muted. And punk though it was, we've never loved the double strap -- dress and bra -- look. But it was a great performance. Randy agreed, saying that he thought it was one of her best performances ever, while Paula told Gina that she loved that she was improving each week and coming into her own as an artist. Simon, cagily, told her "Gina, it wasn’t one of your best performances," and when the boos started rising throughout the audience, he added, "It was your best performance," adding that her transformation over the past few weeks was literally chalk and cheese (an old proverbial phrase suggesting that two things, though superficially alike, are totally different in their qualities).

OK, it's time for everyone to quit saying "Stop picking on Sanjaya Malakar." If the 17-year-old makes a joke out of himself, what are we left to do? Should we not say that the beyond ludicrous-looking seven ponytail Mohawk (ponyhawk?) made him look like a tall, scrawny rooster that escaped from "Chicken Run"? That his version of Gwen Stefani's "Bathwater" was even more laughable? If he's treating the show as if he's the comic relief, then why can't we treat him as the joke he's morphed into? Even Stefani in the filmed segment said he was forgetting the words of the song, that it's going to be hard for him because it's a tough song, "But he chose it, so good luck!" Randy, again laughing before talking, told Sanjaya that he can sing, but he needs to put it out there. Paula agreed, saying the silliness of the look wasn't matched by the performance. In her frustration, she almost seemed to want to say (but didn't) stop screwing around and start taking this seriously. Simon dryly opened with, "I presume there was no mirror in your dressing room tonight?" Channeling his inner 7-year-old, Sanjaya sassed back with, "You're just jealous that you couldn’t pull it off." (with the nah-nah-nah-nah-nah implied). Simon simply smiled and said "I agree, I couldn't." Then, throwing up his hands, Simon closed with that it doesn't really matter what they [the judges] say anymore, Sanjaya's in his own little universe and if people like him then good luck.

We worried when we heard that Haley Scarnato was going to sing Cyndi Lauper's "True Colors." Although we love the song, Cyndi Lauper numbers have proven troublesome for former Idol contestants. (Remember Nadia Turner's version of "Time After Time" -- coincidentally with Mohawk -- in Season 4?). So we didn't know what to expect. All we can say was we loved Haley's version as much as the judges hated it. We loved the vocal variations -- we thought it showed creativity -- as well as the arrangement. We thought it was a strong, on-pitch rendition, perhaps her strongest showing to date. And she looked particularly beautiful. So we were stunned by the critiques. Randy thought it was pitchy and started rough (huh?), and was just kinda aight for him, while Paula babbled something about it being more of an adult contemporary performance and that the song required nothing other than singing the melody and being vulnerable. Simon just felt it was sweet and forgettable. Guess we were listening to a different channel than them.

If Melinda couldn't have the pimp spot this week then it definitely belonged to Phil Stacey, who not only gave his best performance to date with The Police's "Every Breath You Take," but also worked on his appearance. They used some blush to give his pale complexion color and he used a knit cap to cover his pointy head and protruding ears. We also liked the corduroy jacket teamed with the hooded sweatshirt and red T-shirt, jeans and shoes. And it all worked like a charm. His vocals, which usually suffer at some point during his songs -- usually weak beginnings -- were spot on, perfect from beginning to end, echoing the Sting version almost to perfection. Our only worry, would the judges call it too karaoke? Thankfully, they didn't. Randy said, "I actually kind of liked that, dawg" (though why he seemed so surprised that he liked it puzzled us). Paula said Phil should work on building a little more character in the verses (verses sounded fine to us, Paula) but that it was an otherwise real good performance. Simon purred, "This may surprise you, Phil, but I actually thought that was very good." He also thought it was a great song choice and said he felt it was the first time Phil was taking the show seriously. After his trashing at Simon's hands last week, Phil's grin just lit up the room.

Melinda Doolittle dopes out the phrasing of a song like nobody else. Her version of Donna Summer's "Heaven Knows" was everything that LaKisha's Donna Summer song wasn't -- full of life. Melinda just embraces whatever she's singing and makes you feel it, whereas LaKisha just throws her big old voice at it. Melinda's segment was the most uptempo and rocking of the evening and we loved it. Echoing our sentiments, Randy told Melinda, "You actually are living the words, that's what a real singer does," with Paula adding "I love when people tell stories when they're singing, and you do it, in spades." Simon Cowell said that vocally she was outstanding as usual, but added, "hate the outfit," as we did. Don't know if it was the belt that made her look short-waisted, or the pattern of the blue dress, but it didn't work for us at all.

Blake Lewis' choice of The Cure's "Love Song" left us flat. The vocals were fine, but we found the song itself dull and uninspired. Not using the beatboxing for the number was the right decision, but somehow after last week's great performance of The Zombies' "Time of the Season," it was just a letdown. But we loved his Sting-like less spiky hair (we've always thought that Blake bore a slight resemblance to Sting) and wardrobe this week. Gone were those horrible plaid pants that the rest of the world embraced, replaced by a nice pair of charcoal slacks. Randy said he wasn't jumping up and down, but liked it, while Paula told him that she thinks he's the dark horse and that she would love to see him in the finale. Simon Cowell called him the strongest guy in the competition, but warned him to be careful of entering the "Chris Daughtry Zone," by being too indulgent and doing his own thing all the time, because it gets boring.

Cute as a button as always, Jordin Sparks didn't shine as much this week when she chose to go young and hip with No Doubt's "Hey Baby." Stefani said that Jordin made the song sound more musical than she thought it was. Unfortunately her words became unintelligible when she sang the low notes and it wasn't her best performance. But it was full of fun and personality, so a lot can be forgiven. We thought her funky outfit kinda worked, but not totally. We loved the gray seude boots and even the oversized gray skirt, but the red plaid zip-up hoodie looked like a redesigned tablecloth from the "Bella Notte" scene in "Lady and the Tramp." Randy thought she was brilliant, telling her that she could literally sing anything and will be a great recording artist. Paula loved seeing her celebrate that she was young, hip and adorable, while Simon reiterated that she was the most improved contestant that they'd seen in the past few weeks, but that the performance was a bit copycat-ish.

Last up, undeservedly in the pimp spot, was Chris Richardson. We got a lot of noise for trashing his performance of "Don't Let the Sun Catch You Crying" last week (although America agreed with us), and we'll probably get the same for trashing this week's R&B vibed "Don't Speak" by No Doubt. It was as bad as Phil Stacey's version of LeAnn Rimes' "I Need You." It was pitchy from the start and faltered midway through. And forgive us, but he always has this pained look on his face when he sings, as if he's having a bad bathroom experience. However, he did dress cool. The judges, for the most part, continue to champion Richardson as they have from the start. Randy said it was interesting, that he liked the R&B ska and that Chris could "actually can sing the runs, so I enjoy when you do that man," with Paula adding "You're good, Chris, you're good." Simon oddly told Chris that song choice had gotten him in trouble last week. Odd because Simon, who should be ashamed of himself, didn't even know the song Chris sang last week, while Randy and Paula loved his acoustic arrangement of "Don't Let the Sun Catch You Crying," so what the hell was Simon talking about? Simon agreed with Randy that he liked the arrangement, but he wasn't crazy about the vocal (amen on that, Simon).

Our Top 3 in descending order: Melinda Doolittle, Phil Stacey, Gina Glocksen

Our Bottom 3 in descending order: Sanjaya Malakar, Chris Richardson, Chris Sligh

Our Middle, in no particular order: Haley Scarnato, LaKisha Jones, Blake Lewis, Jordin Sparks

America's Bottom 3: Haley Scarnato, Chris Sligh, Phil Stacey
Voted off: Haley Scarnato

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2007