Saturday, May 31, 2008

Thank You From David Cook

Watch video of David Cook thanking his fans:

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2008

Friday, May 30, 2008

Meeting the Amazing David Cook

Yesterday, we had the fabulous experience of sitting in on (and sitting right next to) DAVID COOK while he was being interviewed at Fox Network Television offices in the News Corporation building in Manhattan.

We spent about a half hour with Cook, shortly before he was about to board a flight for a couple of days rest, after which he goes right into rehearsals for the 2008 Idols Live Tour. David is as gracious, charming and nice -- and just as handsome -- as he appeared on "Idol." It is definitely a case of what you see is what you get. When we asked him whether he had known what he was getting himself into -- after all, that morning he was already performing live outside Rockefeller Center on the "Today" show (a couple of blocks away from the Fox offices) while we were still sitting at home watching him on TV -- he answered yes, and that he would get some rest today and tomorrow. Looking a bit tired, he requested a raincheck when one of his young interviewers (they were 10) asked if he would sing a song for us. Saying he was a bit under the weather vocally (he had a glass of orange juice on the table by him), he did, however, promise that he would try to come and sing at their school to make it up to them.

Cook was wearing the same black sport jacket with a black T-shirt that read Lady Luck beneath, a necklace and the jeans that he had worn during his "Today" show appearance. His boots looked like the same pointy-toed pair he had worn on the "Idol" finale. As soon as everyone was seated around a small table, he flipped off a TV that was on behind him. His phone apparently was set on vibrate and when it went off he apologized to us (!) and turned it off as well. He was polite and courteous beyond belief.

Although we didn't learn a lot of things we hadn't heard or read from other interviews, David, 25, did say:

--That he thinks his brother Andrew will try out for "Idol" again next season.
--That he got his first guitar when he was 12 or 13 but didn't truly learn how to play it until he was 24 (and, in fact, is still learning).
--That his favorite song of those he sang on Idol was his last one, Collective Soul's "The World I Know" because it summed up his whole "Idol" experience and everything that had happened to him.
--That his favorite song ever is "Potato Girl" by Our Lady Peace.
--That the contestants he was most saddened to see leave -- because, in his opinion, they left too early on weeks they had done well -- were Michael Johns and Carly Smithson.
--That he considers all 23 other semi-finalists his friends, but bonded early on with Michael Johns, Luke Menard and Jason Yeager.
--That as a child he wanted to be either a baseball player or the guy who stood on the back of the garbage truck.
--That Simon Cowell wasn't cruel just very honest ... and a little mean (said with a twinkle in his eye).
--That he played all kinds of sports as a child: baseball, football, basketball and soccer, but that he wasn't very good at the latter. In fact, he said, I probably wasn't very good at any of them, because look where I am now.
--That he hadn't been embarrassed when he looked back at his performances singing and dancing -- until he was just asked that question.
--That he hated Wednesdays on "Idol" because a) He had to dance, and b) Someone had to go home.
--That this was his first trip to New York City

At the end of the interview, he patiently posed for photos and autographed photos for everyone, even carefully making sure to write something different on each picture. He acted as if we were doing him a favor for being there for him instead of the other way around. David Cook is the very image of what an American Idol should be. Not only because of the great talent he is blessed with, but because he is humble, sincerely nice and a wonderful role model. This week his music downloads have already set new records and we wish him continued success in what we expect will be a brilliant career.

Watch video of David Cook and David Archuleta interview on the "Today" show:

Watch video of David Cook singing "The Time of My Life" on the "Today" show:

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2008

Sunday, May 25, 2008

David Cook Videos
Guitar Hero & Disney Ads
Interviews & Season 7 Songs

Watch video of David Cook Guitar Hero commercial:

Watch video of David Cook "I'm Going to Disney World" commercial:

Watch video of David Cook interview on "American Idol Extra" Part 1:

Watch video of David Cook interview on "American Idol Extra" Part 2:

Watch video of David Cook interview on "American Idol Extra" Part 3:

Watch video of David Cook interview on Jay Leno:

Watch video of David Cook interview on Larry King Live:

Watch video of David Cook singing a very poignant "The World I Know" on "Access Hollywood."

Watch video of David Cook answering an "Idol" trivia quiz on "Access Hollywood."

Watch video of David Cook's first audition for "American Idol":

Watch video of Simon Cowell saying "no"(!!!) to David Cook during Hollywood Week:

Watch video of David Cook making the Top 24:

Watch video David Cook's Top 24 Interview:

Watch video of David Cook singing "Happy Together" (Top 12 Guys):

Watch video of David Cook singing "All Right Now" (Top 10 Guys):

Watch video of David Cook singing "Hello" (Top 8 Guys):

Watch video of David singing "Eleanor Rigby" (Top 12):

Watch video of David singing "Day Tripper" (Top 11):

Watch video of David singing "Billie Jean" (Top 10):

Watch video of David singing "Little Sparrow" (Top 9):

Watch video of David singing "Innocent" (Top 8):

Watch video of David singing "Always Be My Baby" (Top 7):

Watch video of David singing "Music of the Night" (Top 6):

Watch video of David singing "I'm Alive" (Top 5):

Watch video of David singing "All I Really Need Is You" (Top 5):

Watch video of David singing "Hungry Like the Wolf" (Top 4):

Watch video of David singing "Baba O'Riley" (Top 4):

Watch video of David singing "The First Time I Ever Saw Your Face" (Top 3):

Watch video of David singing "Dare To Make You Move" (Top 3):

Watch video of David singing "I Don't Want To Miss a Thing" (Top 3):

Watch video of David singing "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For" (Finale):

Watch video of David singing "Dream Big" (Finale):

Watch video of David singing "The World I Know" (Finale):

Watch video of David singing Idol winner song "The Time of My Life"

Official release of "The Time of My Life:

Or listen to it here on AOL Popeater.

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2008

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

American Idol Finale
And the Winner Is ...

DAVID COOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh what a night! Victory was sweet and grand and a bit teary (for us as well). David Cook took the title with a 12 million vote margin. We now feel all the time spent hitting the redial button at least 150 times was time well spent. When we heard that Ryan Seacrest had announced Wednesday morning on his KIIS-FM radio show that 97.5 million votes had been cast and that one contestant had received 56 percent and the other 44 percent, we knew that Cook was golden. We had done the math ourselves after seeing the results and those were exactly the numbers we came up with after seeing the vote spread. Which not only means was right -- they were also damn accurate. We knew that unless The Evil Puppeteer (Nigel Lythgoe) and crew were going to commit a huge lie, that David Cook was the winner for sure. WooooooooooooDamnHoooooooooooooo!!!

Right before the Big Announcement, Ryan went back to judges one last time for their final thoughts.

Randy Jackson said, "Great, great Season 7, man. You dudes brought it down to the wire. I'm so happy that it's the two of you standing there. This has been one of the strongest years ever and welcome to The Duel. You're both winners, baby. Both."

Paula Abdul started with her regular blather: "I'm honored and proud to be sitting here. You two are truly amazing. It's odd that it's called the finale when it's anything but a final. It's the beginning of the start of the destinies of your careers. I'm so proud." But ended with a rather touching statement that sounded as if it came straight from "The Wizard of Oz": "And just remember, sometimes we think it's all about winning, but it's the things sometimes that we lose that remind us how truly special we are as people. Keep it up."

But the cherry on top of the whipped cream was watching Simon Cowell backpedal so fast that he almost rocketed out of the theater after Seacrest told him that at times during the season he had been harsh on "these Davids" and asked what Cowell thought after he had rewatched Tuesday's performance show (this whole thing felt very staged). Cowell said: "I want to congratulate both of you last night because, um, I thought on the night that it was a terrific show. I went back home to watch it. (begin backpedal ...) It wasn't quite so clear cut as we called it (Paula to Simon: Ye-ah"). And in fact, um, David, um, I will take this opportunity to apologize, because I think I was verging on disrespectful with you. And I don't think you deserved that because over the season, both of you, what I liked about both of you was that you're "triers" (did he get that term out of the George Bush playbook?). And you've both given it your best. You're very nice people. And for the first time ever, I don't really care who wins. I think you've both been terrific." (Woo, great, complete backpedal. That covered all of his bases, teehee).

Watch video of David Cook being crowned the new American Idol and singing "Time of My Life":

The show opened with Top 12 and the "So You Think You Can Dance" dancers performing to "Get Ready." After their joint performance on "Idol Gives Back," we were looking forward to this reunion, but it lacked the pizzazz that their IGB Rihanna number had.

Watch video of show opening and the Top 12 singing "Get Ready":

Next, Cook and Archuleta dueted on the Nickelback song "Hero" from the film "Spiderman." Meh. The harmony was not terrific and the song was much more suited to Cook (who is rumored to have suggested it to the producers) than it was to Archuleta.

Watch video of David Cook and David Archuleta singing "Hero":

And what would an Idol finale be without a cross-promotion to another Fox property? Er, perhaps better? Tonight, we have to sit through the insufferable promo for Mike Myers forthcoming film, "The Love Guru." This involves footage of The Davids seeing an advance of the film and then doing a filmed skit with Myers in his Guru Pitkha persona. Afterward, still in costume, Myers tortures us with a bit more of his Guru schtick before mercifully departing the stage.

Watch video of David Cook and David Archuleta with Guru Pitkha (Mike Myers):

The worst number of the night award went to Syesha Mercado and Seal duetting "Waiting for You." Two singers take a lousy song then make it off pitch and out of sync with each other, what a treat! Not. It was hard to sit through and actually painful to listen to. This certainly didn't enhance Mercado's career any.

Watch video of Syesha Mercado and Seal singing "Waiting for You":

Next, Jason Castro reminds us why you should rest on your laurels and not re-sing something you've previously sung to near-perfection. He encores his true "moment" from the season, "Hallelujah," and, well, it's nowhere as good as it was the first time around. The final high note breaks painfully.

Watch video of Jason Castro singing "Hallelujah":

The Ford commercial, set to "Let the Good Times Roll," was actually a compilation reel of all the Ford ads from Season 7. Back to the show and, as expected, Ryan, with The Davids onstage, has two sets of car keys to new ... Mustangs? Nope. New Ford Escape Hybrids. Hmmmm. We know this was supposed to be the "green" version of the finale, and we're all for saving the planet, but two guys -- one 17, the other 25? Wethinks they'd rather be racing around in Mustangs. Besides, they (unlike us) will never have to worry about the price of gas again.

Watch video of Ford commercial "Let the Good Times Roll":

A very bizarre segment with the six female finalists singing a Donna Summer medley, after which Summer joins them onstage to sing her new single, "Stamp Your Feet." Summer has to be escorted down the stairs, with two guys each holding one of her hands as they descend. Her wig isn't the best and she's gotten heavier with age, but when she breaks into "Last Dance" she proves the pipes are still powerful. Great upbeat ending, with Syesha getting a little more face time with Summer and loving it. Meanwhile, what was up with Amanda Overmyer? She looked pissed and uncomfortable and sounded pretty crappy. Yep, good thing she won't be on the tour.

Watch video of 6 female contestants and Donna Summer singing Donna Summer medley:

This was followed by one of the better numbers of the night, a rousing, well-done rendition of Joe Cocker's "The Letter" sung by Carly Smithson and Michael Johns. They were great dueting together and reminded us, as Ryan pointed out, that they had left the competition way too soon.

Watch video of Carly Smithson and Michael Johns singing "The Letter":

Time for another "humor" break. He was such a smash trashing Simon at IGB, that the producers had Jimmy Kimmel return. His best joke? "Hey maybe you guys can help me with this. I valet parked outside. How much do I tip Sanjaya?" Cut to Sanjaya Malakar in the audience LHAO. Most of the rest of his jokes fell kind of flat. Maybe he should stick with interviewing the eliminated "Dancing with the Stars" contestants.

Watch video of Jimmy Kimmel ridiculing Sanjaya, Ryan Seacrest et al:

The Top 6 male contestants perform a Bryan Adams medley, after which the now gristly and gnarly looking Adams joins them onstage. Man, we knew he needed a heavy-duty dermabrasion, but we never noticed that gap between his front teeth before. It was as bad as Alfred E. Neuman's. But we love Bryan, anyway.

Watch video of 6 male contestants and Bryan Adams singing Bryan Adams medley:

As we come back from commercial, Jordin Sparks does a filmed pitch for the new "American Idol" attraction that's opening later this year at Disney World. The public can live the "Idol" experience there by singing and competing, with each day's winner earning a spot at the head of the line for one of next season's audition cities.

David Cook takes the stage with ZZ Top, who haven't changed in appearance in 40 years and still look like distant relative of Cousin Itt, for a satisfying rendition of "Sharp Dressed Man." After the performance, Ryan goes to the remote of Mikalah Gordon in Kansas City to see the hometown reaction of Cook's fans.

Watch video of David Cook and ZZ Top singing "Sharp Dressed Man":

This is followed by a rather sweet duet by Graham Nash and Brooke White singing "Teach Your Children Well." White was in her element, singing the kind of music she loves. It was a warm and fuzzy moment.

Watch video of Graham Nash and Brooke White singing "Teach Your Children Well":

Another commercial break, and wait! Is that David Archuleta doing a commercial for "Guitar Hero" mimicing Tom Cruise in "Risky Business"? Man, Daddy Archuleta wasted no time getting his baby boy some outside revenue. Is that even allowed by "Idol" rules? Yikes!

Back from commercial and the Jonas Brothers take the stage. The mosh pit goes crazy.

Watch video of the Jonas Brothers performing:

Another filler segment that had potential then fell flat. Ryan takes us back to some of the memorably bad auditions from Season 7. We laugh at some of the really horrific ones and then come to Renaldo "I Am Your Brother" Lapuz, who -- no surprise -- is here to relive the memory with us. But the producers go off the deep end. It was funny when the whole thing happened spontaneously at the auditions. Now they have Lapuz accompanied by the USC marching band and cheerleaders, storming down the theater's aisles to join him onstage. It all goes bad. They're totally out of sync with each other. When Paula and Randy opt to join them (Simon smartly remained in his seat), it only gets worse. They can't shut Renaldo up and have to go to a commercial to clear the stage.

Watch video of bad auditions and Renaldo Lapuz singing with the USC Band and cheerleaders:

It's time to spotlight David Archuleta. He sings "Apologize" with OneRepublic, and it's sounding real good until David has to go to the really high note and it's out of his register. He uses a lower key next time around, and overall it was a pleasing duet. Archuleta joins Ryan for a look at what's happening in Utah. Matt Rogers is there with both his paternal and maternal grandfathers. Jeff Archuleta looks like he's getting a kick out of his father being interviewed. David's maternal grandfather speaks Spanish and Matt needs a (pretty, young) translator.

Watch video of David Archuleta and OneRepublic singing "Apologize":

Jordin Sparks, proving she's over her recent health crisis, performs a very peppy version of "One Step at a Time." We're glad to see that she has refused to be pressured by Hollywood to turn into a stick, and has seemingly maintained the same weight she had when she last graced the "Idol" stage. However, we hated the gold lamé dress (all wrong for her) and weren't that crazy about the song, either.

Watch video of Jordin Sparks singing "One Step at a Time":

A bit more comedy. Instead of a "dead Elvis" routine, they used the same technology to merge an early Gladys Knight in a spoof audition session with the Pips, played by Ben Stiller, Jack Black and Robert Downey Jr. It was fun, but not hilarious.

Watch video of Gladys Knight singing "Midnight Train to Georgia" with Pips Ben Stiller, Jack Black and Robert Downey Jr.:

Powerhouse Carrie Underwood takes the stage in the shortest dress of the evening to perform her new single, "Last Name." It's the same type of crossover country-pop as "Before He Cheats," but not quite as good. Still, we expect it'll chart satisfactorily.

Watch video of Carrie Underwood singing "Last Name":

For the final number, the top 12 perform a George Michael medley. First the girls do "Faith," then the guys do "Father Figure," with David Hernandez going almost sotto voce and breaking into a huge grin when he hit the word "naked" in the lyric "For just one moment, to be bold and naked at your side." Who did he throw that smile at? The entire group sang "Freedom," then introduced George Michael, who both looked and sounded creepy. The latter, we find out, can be attributed to a cold. The former? Perhaps to those oversized bug-like sunglasses that make him look like an aging diva. And to think we once had a crush on him. He sang "Praying for Time".

Watch video of Top 12 singing George Michael medley and George Michael singing "Praying for Time":

And finally the announcement. David Archuleta looks neither surprised nor upset. He seems genuinely happy for Cook. Cook, on his part, asks the audience to give it up for Archuleta and keeps an arm around him. Cook is joined onstage by his mother and brother Andrew. Cook blames it all on Andrew. Later, on the catwalk, singing the retchy new "coronation" song, "Time of My Life," that includes lyrics about a magic rainbow, Cook again calls Archuleta over and puts an arm around him. They appear to have a very brotherly relationship. It's nice. The fireworks go off, the confetti drops, Cook finishes singing and drops his face in his hand again, crying. We close with Andrew mouthing to the camera, "That's my brother." It sure is.

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2008

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

American Idol Finale
And Then There Were Two

When David Cook is prounced the Season 7 American Idol Wednesday night, the first people he needs to thank are Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul (in that order). The three stooges judges threw him under a bus Tuesday night and guaranteed him the win. The next people Cook needs to thank are his rabidly loyal fans (us included) who dialed hundreds of times to win him the crown after the three stooges judges declared him roadkill. "Hell, no, he won't go," we protested and dialed until our fingers were bloody. And nothing will be more satisfying than wiping that smug grin off of Daddy Jeff Archuleta's face tonight. There will be no joy in Mudville Murray, Utah, mighty scrawny David Archuleta has struck out.

Not that either performer was bad -- or exceedingly great for that matter. It was a fairly balanced competition talent-wise. But it was also like comparing apples with oranges. Archuleta has the more melodically beautiful almost always perfectly pitched voice, but is emotionally vacant and vapid when it comes to lyrics, and, for the most part, lacks creativity. He is a ballad singer from the David Foster (or Clay Aiken) school of music. David Cook, has a raspier rocker quality to his voice (though, as he proved with "Music of the Night," he can handle a ballad with panache). His pitch isn't always perfect, but his crafting of a tune -- from rearranging the melody to his phrasing and emotional grasp of the lyrics -- can make a grown man cry. And America wept last night, along with Cook as he valiantly tried to hold back tears upon finishing his third number.

Perhaps the tears said it all in how the two Davids differ. Archuleta cried in response to the praise from the judges, especially each time Cowell proclaimed him the winner of a round or the contest. It was as if Daddy was telling him he had been a good boy. Cook teared up before receiving any adulation. We couldn't read his mind, but imagine it was over the emotion from the touching lyrics of the aptly titled "The World I Know," from the competition finally ending, from all the sad events he has had to endure with his brother's brain cancer and yesterday's announcement of his friend and co-contestant Luke Menard's Hodgkin lymphoma, another form of cancer.

The pro-
ducers chose a boxing match scenario for the finale, set to the theme from
"Rocky." They even had Michael "Let's get ready to rumble" Buffer open the show, announcing and introducing the contestants -- at 180 pounds, David "Sugarfoot" Cook and at 100 pounds soaking wet, David "Baby Face" Archuleta -- in robes with boxing gloves on. The theme continued throughout the evening, with commentary from boxing analyst Jim Lampley and coaching from Clive "Skeletor" Davis and Andrew Lloyd Webber. The most humorous part of the opening? When Buffer intoned: "Two men, with one name and one desire -- to be crowned champion. Their prize, a heavyweight title reserved only for superstars." Funny thing though, the video at that point shows Kelly Clarkson, Chris Daughtry and Carrie Underwood. Er, did we miss something? When did Chris Daughtry win "Idol"? They'd love us to all forget Taylor Hicks' win and believe that revisionist history.

Watch video of the opening boxing sequence of the finale:

Last week, Archuleta won the coin toss and selected to perform second. So, Cook began the competition. The first song for each was selected by Clive "The Cryptkeeper" Davis. He wasn't tossing any softballs and both contestants handled his selection deftly. Cook, looking grungier than usual tonight with slightly spiked and gelled hair, received U2's "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For," and gave a strong performance. He started onstage and ended the performance on the catwalk, looked confident and professional. It wasn't his best of the season, but it was certainly finale-worthy. He had a great final note, but we were confused when the note continued and lingered after he had dropped the mike away from his face. (BTW, the same thing happened with Syesha's exit song last week). What up producers?

Randy said, "I think it was a great way to start off this duel of 2007 (Er, Randy, if Paula is seeing the future, critiquing songs that haven't been sung yet, you, Dude, are living in the past. It's 2008, man). Very nice song choice (er, he didn't pick it). I mean, I don't know if you did everything you could do with it, but I love the scoop of the note at the end. It was hot, baby. Hot!" Paula, making her first song title analogy of the night, said, "Well, you may not have found what you're looking for, but we have found David Cook. And we need to look no further. David Cook has arrived. Amen, amen. And you're in great voice tonight." Simon said, "I thought it was phenomenal."

Watch video of David Cook singing U2's "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For":

Davis annointed Archuleta with Elton John's "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me." John is such a skilled and prolific singer, that most of us don't realize how difficult his songs are until other people try to perform them. Could Archuleta pull it off, especially when Clay Aiken scored so famously with the same number during Season 2? He could and he did. He started a bit uncertainly and with a small amount of pitchiness, but settled in and soared through the rest of the number. We agreed with Simon that it might have been his best performance of the season.

Randy said, "This is one of the best performances of this whole season and you picked the right time to peak, baby. That was flawless (well, no) and unbelievably molten hot. Hot, crazy vocals. Crazy vocals, crazy." Paula said, "My heart's still pounding, David. I've got chills up and down arms (As Archuleta starts to cry, Randy is still yelling "Crazy" in the background). The sun is never gonna go down on you, because you bring out so much sunshine in everyone throughout the whole world in your singing. And David, that was a beautiful, beautiful, stunning performance. I'm so excited, tonight is unbelievable (Randy in the background "It's hot, hot."). Simon, trying to shush them with, "OK, OK, OK, very easy to get overexciting tonight," added, "David, I'm going to be honest with you. I thought last week you were OK. I thought tonight's performance was arguably the best you've done so far. Taking everything into account, Round 1 goes to Archuleta."

Watch video of David Archuleta singing Elton John's "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me":

We say: Round 1 went to Archuleta.

The producers smartly buried the songwriter's competition song into the middle of the Tuesday's contest. Any other spot and they would have lost their audience. Of course, the songs were sucky, but the contestants were allowed to select from the 10 songs which received the highest number of votes (those should have been easy to count, did any get more than 10?). Cook chose "Dream Big," something he could rock out. We weren't with the program -- and really couldn't make out the words over the band -- until he hit the chorus, which we thought had a fine hook and made the song commercially viable. Did we love it? Would we buy it? No. Would we listen to it again. Absolutely.

Randy said, "The song was just OK for me, but what made it really work is your voice. You were singing your face off. Whoa! He could hit those notes.What? Nice, nice." Paula said, "A song in your heart, a guitar in your hands, and we millions who sit here mesmerized by you. This is a great way to take a song we don't know and falls in love with it. Congratulations." Simon said, "Using the boxing analogy, it was a bit of a lightweight, I thought. I thought the end was OK. You made the most of what you had. I mean, bearing in mind this is supposed to be a winning song, it didn't feel like a winning moment for me. ... That was a 6½ out of 10."

Watch video of David Cook singing "Dream Big":

No surprise, Archuleta went for a syrupy ballad, the kind we expect -- and hate -- year after year. We were so bored with "In This Moment" we had trouble paying attention through the entire song. And Archuleta didn't seem to connect with the lyrics at all. It was a sickeningly sweet snooze. No surprise, the judges loved him and covered him with praise (has Randy ever said a negative word to Archuleta?)

Randy said, "Once again, I wasn't crazy about the song, but here's the deal, man. Right now, you are so in the zone, dawg, that you could sing the phone book and it would be good. So that was another hot performance." Er, Randy, this sounds familiar. Oh, that's right. It's the same thing you say every time Archuleta performs. Sheesh! Can't you even be bothered to come up with a new tongue bath for the finale? Paula said, "It's just another heartfelt performance. It doesn't matter what song you're singing. It's like you're on fire tonight. It's pure magic. And you know what? That is why you're in this spot that you're in in the finals, my dear. So congratulations." Simon said, "You definitely, definitely chose the better song there. Much more in keeping with the night. Round 2 goes to David Archuleta." David cries and we begin to understand that it's Cowell we should blame for the disgusting coronation songs. This is what he thinks is good music? Oh. But of course. He's also responsible for Leona Lewis' "Bleeding Love," another piece of crap. Amazing that Mr. Teletubbie has become a zillionaire from bad taste.

Watch video of David Archuleta singing "In This Moment":

We say: Round 2 went to Cook.

The third song was con-
testant's choice. Cook chose Collec-
tive Soul's "The World I Know." Now, if you are a true Cook fan, this was a daring and praiseworthy choice. It was haunting and beautiful. We loved the tenderness and emotion he displayed, right down to the welling over eyes when he finished. If you just tuned in to watch a "finale performance" then you might have preferred, as Simon Cowell pointed out, an encore of "Hello" or "Billy Jean," or a new song that was more accessible. For those reasons alone, Cook should win. He didn't feel the need to pander to the greater audience with a more "popular" song choice. He instead remained true to himself and to those of us who will actually be buying his first CD. This is the music we want him to make, and that we'll happily buy. For those of you who would never buy a CD from an Idol contestant when the competition's become a distant memory, you probably remained unmoved. And so it goes.

Randy said, "You're showing people tonight a lot of different sides of David Cook. That was very nice sensitive side of David Cook and I love Collec-
tive Soul and I've been saying this for weeks now, I think this is definitely the kind of record that you could make and get by with. Very nice job, dude. Very nice." Paula said, "I look at you up on that stage and you're standing in your truth and you're delivering unbelivable songs with integrity and originality and I truly applaud you David Cook, I do (stands up and applauds). Simon said, "I just want to say publicly, that you are actually one of the nicest most sincere contestants we've had. It was a beautiful song, but I'm going to be honest with you. It was completely and utterly the wrong song choice for you on the night. Because what you should've done was, you should have sung 'Billie Jean' or 'Hello.' But you understand what I'm saying." When Ryan Seacrest asked Cook how he felt about Cowell's remarks, he smartly answered, "You know, for me this whole thing has been a progression, and so the way that I was looking at it was, 'why do something I've already done?' No, but, for the record, I completely understand what you're saying, so ... (at this point Simon gave him a wink)." And at this point we had to wonder if Simon's bashing of Cook all night had been a calculated move to get the troops out in force to vote for him. The reverse of his praise for Carly Smithson being her "kiss of death." We'll never know.

Watch video of David Cook singing Collective Soul's "The World I Know":

Not being nearly as brave, Archuleta did what Simon suggested Cook should have done, and sang "Imagine," considered by most everyone to be his strongest performance of the season. There is something about watching a performance for the first time and being caught unaware of how wonderful it is going to be. It never quite comes off as well the second time around. Of course, we didn't like it the first time around, and liked it even less the second time for the same reason: Archuleta does not connect emotionally to what John Lennon was writing. This is not a singer's song. It's a songwriter's song. Listen to how John Lennon sings it. He wants you to listen to the words, not the melody. It's not supposed to soar and have a dozen runs in it (more than the first time). It's supposed to hit you in the stomach and mean something to you. It did to Lennon. It's almost sacrilegious to pretty it up. And so it goes.

The judges, as expected, went nuts for it, for all the wrong reasons. Randy said, "Dude, you are so good tonight, you are exactly what this show is about. Finding the best singer that we can find. And the best singer, Season 7 IS RIGHT THERE!!!!!" Paula said, "You've left me speechless as I was when I first heard you sing this song. You were stunning tonight. You were stunning." Simon said, "At the end of the day, this show is about finding a star, and tonight I think we've witnessed one of the great finals. But in my opinion, David, you came out here tonight to win, and what we have witnessed is a knockout."

Watch video of David Archuleta singing John Lennon's "Imagine":

We say: Round 3 is a tie.

So what a shock it will be for all when David Cook is crowned tonight. According to, there is NO POSSIBLE WAY Cook can lose. has never been wrong in the six years it has been predicting the finale winner and Cook is 11.5% ahead of Archuleta, a huge lead by DialIdol standards. Even considering every possible margin of error, Cook is King. And we say, long live the king.

Ruben Studdard closed the show with an uninspired and forgettable rendition of "Celebrate Me Home."

Confirmed and unconfirmed spoilers for tonight's finale include:
David Cook and Mariah Carey will duet on "Always Be My Baby."
David Archuleta and Neil Diamond will duet on "America."
Seal, Donna Summer, ZZ Top, the Jonas Brothers, Kanye West and George Michael are also performing.

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2008

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

American Idol Top 3 Results Show

See our prediction on who will win American Idol featured on AOL Television. We are on Page 11 of 12.

Eliminated: Syesha Mercado

Next week, David Cook and David Archuleta face off in the finale.

Watch video of the elimination of Syesha Mercado:

Even though we saw 59 minutes more than we needed to in order to learn the only thing we cared about -- who had made it into the finale -- at least most of those minutes were dedicated to the Top 3 finalists and not lame fluff such as the viewer call-in Q&A. Even the one entertainment act, Fantasia, was a former Idol. So it was pretty much an all in the family night. And, much to our surprise, we have to congratulate The Evil Puppeteer and Co. for finally getting a results show right. Wednesday night was all about congratulations and celebrations instead of humiliation. No twin silver stools. Everyone on the couch all evening unless they were being reviewed and being paid tribute to.

At first we wondered why the producers were showing everyone's journey video Wednesday night, even if they weren't leaving. Then we realized that the runner-up, the contestant who should be lauded as much as the winner, never gets anything at the finale, other than the opportunity to congratulate the winner. There is no runner-up journey video -- ever -- until this season, which corrects a serious flaw from former years.

The show opened with the Top 3 performing "Ain't No Stopping Us Now." Vocally it sounded fine. But as in former weeks, the choreography was amateurish and looked worse than a high school musical. Why can't these singers be left to just sing? Do we have to pretend they can dance even if they can't? They just end up looking foolish walking detetminedly back and forth, and up and down the stage, trying to simulate a "routine." Following the commercial break this week's "Idol" Ford commercial featured the Top 3 singing "Heaven" and imagining themselves as superstars. At the end, an amusement park fortune-telling vending machine a la the Zoltan machine in the film "Big," dispenses three keys to Ford vehicles instead of cards with their fortunes. For Cook and Archuleta that will become a reality next week when both are gifted with new Ford Mustangs during the finale.

Watch video of Top 3 singing "Ain't No Stopping Us Now":

Watch video of the making of Ford commercial, "Heaven":

Watch video of Ford commercial, "Heaven":

Ryan Seacrest "revealed" that in the closest contest of any Idol season (though we're sure the Season 5 Top 3 contest between Taylor Hicks, Katharine McPhee and Elliott Yamin was even tighter), America had cast 56 million votes on Tuesday night, then recapped the performances from the night before.

Next, he introduced Season 3 winner Fantasia Barrino, who, sporting orange-pink humongously ugly hair, performed her latest release, "Bore Me." Well, she certainly bored us. What has happened to the Fantasia we once loved? We hate the music she has released since winning "Idol," including this number. However, during the performance, the camera panned to Simon Cowell, who had the most incredulous "What the fuck?" look on his face. It was priceless and worth sitting through Fantasia's dreck just to see that.

Watch video of Fantasia Barrino performing "Bore Me":

The remainder of the evening was dedicated to the videos of each contestant's hometown visit followed by the journey video of each. Up first was David Archuleta. Was this an omen that he would be booted Wednesday night? Unfortunately, no. Watching David's video, we realized that we had been unfair to him. He doesn't giggle all the time. He sometimes talks. And when he does, all he says is "gosh." That's pretty much it -- gosh. Watching him with David Cook next week is going to be like watching Wally and The Beaver. Can't wait to see how many times Archuleta says "gosh" then. Pray he doesn't win. If he does, he'll certainly have a gosh gush.

Anyway, he goshed his way through his hometown of Murray, Utah, from the cheerleaders to the number of people who turned out ("Gosh, where did they park?"). And, of course, he cried. But, then, so did Sysesha and David Cook during their hometowm jaunts.

Watch video of David Archuleta's hometown visit and journey:

Syesha went home to Florida, first to Sarasota, then to Bradenton. Highlights of her visit included someone handing her a baby as if she were a politician, a visit to her high school and a helicopter ride. Normally very self-controlled, we were surprised to see how emotional Syesha became when she had some private moments (if you can call being filmed for TV in a limousine or a helicopter private moments).

Watch video of Syesha Mercado's hometown visit and journey:

Finally, it was David Cook's turn. He went home to Blue Springs and Kansas City, Mo., where he performed a mini concert, appeared on radio, dropped in on his elementary school music teacher to thank her and give her a bouquet of flowers, and threw out the first pitch at a Kansas City Royals game. He, too, was overcome by it all and teared up. He was accompanied during the parade, as well as onstage Wednesday night on the live show, by his younger brother, Andrew (his older brother, Adam, was also at the hometown celebration, but couldn't attend all the festivities because of his illness). Cook never intended to audition for "Idol." He headed to Omaha with Andrew to offer moral support to his younger sibling. Who can say where the road goes, where the day flows, only time.

Watch video of David Cook's hometown visit and journey:

Finally it was time for the results. Instead of the normally torturous routine, Seacrest simply announced the two finalists moving on to the finale. It was clean, it was short and as painless as it could have been for Syesha, who be joining the Davids at the results show next week, but no longer as a contender.

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2008

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

American Idol Top 3 Perform
Triple Play

They came, they sang, they conquered. Well, not totally. Tuesday night, the contestants each performed three songs -- the first chosen by one of the judges, the second chosen by the contestants themselves and the final number selected by the producers. Surprisingly, the weakest round was the middle one, because the performers failed to pick songs that showcased their talents and ranges to their best advantage. Proving that they actually do profess skills were the judges, whose sometimes odd choices were tough yet fit the Top 3 very well and forced them (for the most part) to stretch their abilities. The producers' picks weren't far behind. And so it goes. An apt descriptive of the night's performances as well as the title of the first song sung.

First up was David Archuleta, whose song, Billy Joel's "And So It Goes," was selected by Paula Abdul. Kudos to Abdul. Though she selected a song that was perfectly suited to Archuleta, it also had a high degree of difficulty, which he handled deftly. He sang the first half a cappella, the second with music. It sounded very Irish and melodically was hauntingly beautiful, though as with Archuleta's performance of John Lennon's "Imagine" early in the competition, David lacked any emotional depth or connection to the words. He is neither mature enough nor does he possess enough life experience to relate to songs of that magnitude.

The judges gave him praise. Randy Jackson said, "Paula chose a dope song for you, you can sing anything dude, the Billy Joel thing works well on you ... You are in the zone. You are in it to win, baby." Paula gushed, "It was a pure and stunning performance and tonight I really felt you were a storyteller (in this she was wrong, because he didn't really connect with the words). You really were. It was a beautiful performance. Simon Cowell told Archuleta, "Yeah, it was very good, no surprises. A bit predictable (boos), not really a criticism. It was good. I don't think it was outstanding (to which the little girls in the mosh pit yelled back "Yes it was!" and Simon laughingly answered, "Oh really? You lot are now judging? I don't think so.") Anyway, good, good."

Watch video of David Archuleta singing "And So It Goes" by Billy Joel:

David's choice for himself was one of the stranger ones of the evening: Chris Brown's "With You." Little Davey singing "I need you boo. I gotta see you boo," was more like watching Casper the Friendly Ghost than Chris Brown. Yes, he tried, but this is not his style, not where he excels and it calls into question whether Archuleta could ever truly be a pop star. His abilities seem to be restricted to ballads, and while you'll usually find a few on most pop/rock CDs, they are more the appetizers or desserts of the recording rather than the entree. So Archuleta's own choice might have proven that he's not now ready to assume the pop/rock throne. His forte seems to be in the Josh Groban/David Foster arena.

Randy told him, "I applaud the fact that you're trying something new and young because I think that's really the kind of record you should make. But I'm not sure that was the right song. Seeing you sing "my boo" (boos) was like, I didn't believe it. I couldn't believe it. Paula said, "David, I think it fits perfect, right in the right tone of your voice. I really think you should be singing songs like this. You're so used to singing ballads, but this is another part of who you are. I think I would work on ... not extending the phrases and just shortening it up a little bit. I think you did a great job (not)." Simon agreed with Randy. He said, "I applaud you, that you didn't do a very treacly ballad, which I would've expected, however it was a little bit like a Chihuahua trying to be a tiger, in so much as it's not really you. I thought it was all a bit awkward."

"Watch video of David Archuleta singing "With You" by Chris Brown:

For his last number, the producers chose Dan Fogelberg's "Longer" for David. It was another perfect fit -- one of those treacly ballads that Simon hates with a passion. Archuleta carried it off rather well, adding a few runs but basically maintaining the melodic integrity that Fogelberg instilled in the song. It was his second best song of the night.

Randy thought it an odd song choice for David, but told him he could sing the phone book, and declared it "another hot one from you! Hot! Hot! Hot! " Paula said, "It was a lovely performance David. I expect nothing more. It was just very lovely." Simon added, "David, I'm not going to criticize you because I think you sang the song very well. I thought the song and the lyrics was absolutely horrible. I mean it so gooey, it's something you choose for like a 90-year-old, and you're 17 years old. Having said that, you've done enough to get into the finals next week."

Watch video of David Archuleta singing ""Longer" by Dan Fogelberg:

Syesha Mercado was the contestant who couldn't afford a misstep Tuesday night to make it into the finals. Although her competitors were less than perfect, Syesha had to be beyond perfect to zoom past the two-headed David monster into the final stage of the contest. And although she was good, she was less than she needed to be. Her first number, chosen for her by Randy, was Alicia Keys' "If I Ain't Got You." She did a perfectly nice, if not extraordinary, rendition, but it should've been her time to shine. Why? Because she performed the same number on the short-lived ABC reality singing competition "The One" only a couple of years ago. We find it hard to swallow that Jackson did not know this. Of all the songs in the world he could have selected for Mercado he just happens to pick this one? Uh-uh. We smell a setup. And although she sang it better than she did on "The One" (check out her performance then by clicking on this link), it still wasn't enough to propel her to next week's show. Although, as both Paula AND Simon pointed out she looked gorgeous in a slinky and glittery gold gown.

Randy said, "I thought that would really work well on you. You did an amazing job on it. I could see your heart beating and smiling (huh? is this Randy or Paula?) all the way down here. I'm so happy you are peaking at the right time in this competition. That's why you're standing there in No. 3. You know what I'm saying (well, er, maybe)." Paula said, "I'm very proud that you are the last lady standing there. It's difficult to do a song that so identifiable with a beautiful artist as Alicia, and I applaud you for that. And aside from all of that, you look absolutely stunning. Simon said, "Yeah, I have to say you sang that very well, Syesha. I just wish that Randy had chosen something for you where you were not just going to try and sound like the original." Randy interjects: "Actually, if you listen back, she changed quite a few notes." Simon: "Well, not enough in my opinion, but listen, overall is was, and you look gorgeous, by the way."

Watch video of Syesha Mercado singing "If I Ain't Got You" by Alicia Keys:

Mercado selected Peggy Lee's "Fever" for herself. Wearing a slinky and glittery mini dress (do we see a theme here? Yes! It continued even to Round 3) and using a chair as a prop, she didn't vamp nearly enough (or even as much as we expected her to) to make this a standout performance. It might have garnered raves at the beginning or even the middle of the season, but it was not a number for the semi-finals. She would have done much better with something on the order of Beyonce's "Crazy in Love," a song that would have defined her as both sexy and contemporary. Though, we have to admit that the final note she sang on "Fever" was deliciously good.

Randy said, "A very interesting song choice at this point, but what I liked, to me, is that you sang it amazingly well. Again, a great performance." Paula, not quite as enthusiastic said, "Well, you look lovely tonight, Syesha (the kiss of death), and I've got to tell you, out of all the songs that you've chose to sing, I'm surprised you picked this song, because ... I'm not sure it shows me who Syesha is as an artist." Simon said, "Syesha, I think you will probably regret that decision tomorrow, because you had a chance to prove that you are a contemporary recording artist with your own choice of song. Instead, you did quite a lame cabaret performance."

Watch video of Syesha Mercado singing "Fever" by Peggy Lee:

The producers chose "Hit Me Up" by Gia Farrell for Syesha's final number. It was upbeat and fun, a great dance tune from the "Happy Feet" soundtrack. Dressed like a sexy penguin in a (all together now) slinky and glittery silver top and tight, tight black pants, Mercado hit all the power notes with ease and shimmied her hips throughout, but it was just too little too late. Though it did prove she had what it takes to cut a Rhianna- or Beyonce-like CD. With her knockout looks, the right material and a killa video she could yet become a recording star. But it won't be as the American Idol.

Randy said, "Yeah, I could see you doing a song like that, kind of Rhianna-esque. It was just OK for me." (Boos) Paula said, "You did the song very well. As much as I like it, I don't know if it's the type of song that defines you as Syesha. I don't know if it's good enough to get into the finals of 'American Idol.' (boos) I love you, though." Simon added, "Syesha, look, it was better than the last song, that's for sure. If I'm being honest with you, you had your best moment last week, with the Sam Cooke song. I don't think anything this week has topped that and I think the problem with that song ... is that it's a little bit forgettable -- it's fun, it's young -- but it didn't give you the defining moment I would have liked at the end of this show."

Watch video of Syesha Mercado singing "Hit Me Up" by Gia Farrell from the "Happy Feet" soundtrack:

If you've been reading the blog, you know that we've already crowned David Cook the next American Idol, and Tuesday night he once again proved that it was with good reason. When we first heard that Simon had picked Roberta Flack's "First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" for David, we wondered whether Cowell was trying to sabotage Cook's chances of making it to the finale. We should have known better. Cowell, who has previously said that Cook's singing is his personal choice to listen to, knew that if David could pull off this quirky choice he seemingly would be unstoppable -- or, at the very least, guaranteed a slot in the finale. And pull it off he did, to the point that he gave us goosebumps by the final note. Fingers crossed, this will be Cook's studio release for the week, because we'd love to hear him sing the song in its entirety.

Randy, still chaffing over what Simon had said about his pick for Syesha, told David, "Love the high note at the end, but I wish Simon would have picked something that wasn't as predictable as this older kind of song for you. Because I want you to rock baby. You're a rocker. I needed more rock from it." (Huge boos, enough so Randy had to declare "I love him.") Paula, wisely said, nodding toward Randy, "It's so funny it's about the two of you," then gesturing to David, "Because it's about you, David. That is one of my favorite songs and now you're my second favorite person who sings it." Simon, fairly gloating, said, "Well David, this might sound a little bit biased, but I thought it was actually one of your best performances to date (we agree). This is what makes you brilliant. Because you take risks. It's original. Round 1 goes to Cook and Cowell. (tee-hee)"

Watch video of David Cook singing "First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" by Roberta Flack:

We were unfamiliar with David's personal choice for the evening, Switchfoot's "Dare You to Move." It was a song well-suited to his vocal capabilities but not really to the short time window. The song seemed to have an abrupt ending, though when we checked out Switchfoot's full-length video after the show, we discovered that it similarly had an unpleasing abrupt endng. We judged It a good, but not great, David Cook performance.

Randy said, "Great, great song choice ... performance-wise, let me just say, it wasn't your best tonight. A little pitchy, baby." Paula said, "You know as an artist I know how hard it is to get like a 3 and a half minute song into like a minute 30 and like the challenge is to get the audience to feel like they got the beginning, the middle and end, and I feel like you just got to the beginning when it hit the end of the song. And i wanted MORE." Simon said, "You know what, David? There's not much I can add to that. It was pretty much as I would've expected. I don't think it's the best melodic song in the world. And I think all three of you had an OK middle round."

Watch video of David Cook singing "Dare You to Move" by Switchfoot:

The producer's chose Aerosmith "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing," written by Diane Warren, who (not) coincidentally was sitting in the audience to watch David perform it. We loved the violin-laden orchestral opening, reaching a crescendo when David sang, "Yeah, yeah, yeah." But the music became muddied by the end of the number with the electric guitar fighting the violins and, we felt, David fighting both to be heard over them. But Cook's vocals never faltered and It was another strong performance for the next American Idol. He received a standing O from the audience and Paula Abdul.

Randy, who was not a Cook lover Tuesday night, told him, "I love the song, but it was OK for me. Sorry. Very predictable, very predictable." Paula, enraptured, said, "David, see ya in the finals. That's what I predict." Simon said, "David, one of the great songs of all time, and I have to tell you: David Cook wins the night."

Watch video of David Cook singing "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing" by Aerosmith:

Best of the night: David Cook
No. 2: David Archuleta
Leaving: Syesha Mercado

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2008

Monday, May 12, 2008

The Next American Idol

OK, it's time to go out on a limb. We're down to the final three, and by Wednesday night we'll know who the finalists are. It seems like a no-brainer that the finale will feature David Cook vs. David Archuleta, but we're still skeptical that The Evil Puppeteer (Nigel Lythgoe) has something unexpected up his sleeve. Could it be a David Cook vs. Syesha Mercado finale? Or, worst of all, a David Archuleta vs. Syesha Mercado finale? Our money's still on David vs. David. That's where the ratings live. So who will win? David Cook. Idol missed their shot with Chris Daughtry two years ago. Sure, they still make money off of him, but it would have been so much sweeter if the American Idol, not the fourth-place finisher, had been the biggest selling artist in 2007.

David Cook's potential CD sales could even overtake Chris Daughtry's. He's über talented and can sing "Phantom of the Opera" with as much ease as Phantom Planet. The stylists have exposed his raw sexuality and, surprise! he's also a nice guy. The perfect Idol package. Besides, David Archuleta's daddy dearest cost the show a bundle when sonny boy snuck some lyrics from Sean Kingston's "Beautiful Girls" into his rendition of Ben E. King's "Stand by Me." We all know that payback is a bitch. And payback Idol-style will be David Cook singing the assuredly icky coronation song on May 21.

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2008

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

American Idol:
The Top 4 Results Show

Bottom Two:
Syesha Mercado ("Proud Mary," "A Change Is Gonna Come")

Jason Castro ("I Shot the Sheriff," "Mr. Tambourine Man")

Jason Castro

Watch video of Jason Castro elimination:

Ryan Seacrest opened the show telling us that the nearly 51 million votes received yesterday was a new high total for the season. He also said, and we don't believe, that the Top 3 were all within 1 million votes of each other. Seacrest also briefly reopened the can of worms over Syesha Mercado's performance of "A Change Is Gonna Come" with the judges. Next, the Top 4 performed Steely Dan's "Reelin' in the Years," certainly not a memorable rendition but better than last week's horrific Neil Diamond medley.

Watch video of Top 4 group song, Steely Dan's "Reelin' in the Years":

Right to The Results. Ryan called out David Archuleta, who we thought might be in the Bottom 2 as he was in a dead heat votewise with Syesha according to Guess we shouldn't have been surprised (though we were disappointed) when Ryan sent him to safety on the couch.

It's filler time, and we are shown a video of the Top 4 jetting to Las Vegas on a private 737 to see Cirque Du Soleil's Beatles show "Love." David A remarked on the flight, "this is the nicest plane I've ever seen," while lying on the bed in the bedroom (yes, there is one on the jet), Jason told us, "Sleeping in the sky. Woooooooohooooooooo." In Vegas, the contestants were mobbed by fans wherever they went. The trip included "red carpet makeovers" (they contestants didn't look any different to us afterward) and a meet and greet with the cast of "Love."

Watch video of Top 4 in Las Vegas to see Cirque du Soleil's show "The Beatles":

Wasting no time (that will come later), we rushed right back to the results. Ryan called out David Cook, who was, surprise! safe. Which meant the Bottom 2 (or, more accurately, the two left who hadn't yet learned their fates) were Syesha and Jason Castro (as if anyone expected Jason to survive the previous day's debacle). Ryan called them out and appeared to start giving them the results. Jason asked Ryan if he was actually going to tell them then, only halfway through the show. Of course, Ryan wasn't and it was time for a commercial break followed by the Ford commercial. This week it was a bullfight scenario with the Top 4 as matadors and a Ford Mustang as the bull, all done to "Ring of Fire."

Watch video of behind-the-scenes making of the Top 4 Ford commercial:

Watch video of Top 4 Ford commercial "Ring of Fire":

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, we sat through another stupid viewer Q&A session. This was one of the more boring ones (well, honestly, they all are), the highlight of which was when Emily from Pittsburgh asked David Cook for a date when the Idol Tour plays in her city because it also happens to be *happy coincidence!* her birthday. After a guy in audience yells out, "Don't do it," cracking David up, Cook squirms, makes faces, asks what she likes to do, then extricates himself from the embarrassing moment by saying "We'll see." Uh-huh. Other callers inquired about the biggest obstacles the Top 4 has had to overcome, why Simon Cowell hadn't been knighted, how Syesha feels being the only girl in the Top 4, whether the Top 4 has gotten any feedback from artists whose songs they've covered (David C says he heard from Our Lady Peace) and whether Simon had ever acted because the caller thinks he'd be perfect as the next James Bond. Cowell told Seacrest he liked the questions this week, wink, smile.

Watch video of Viewer Q&A asking David Cook on a date:

Next, Maroon 5 performed their new single, "If I Never See Your Face Again," which, on the CD, features Rhianna. We didn't love it and we normally do like their music. Seacrest asked Adam Levine if he had any advice for the Top 4. He told them to get ready to work and that they'll get jaded and hate it, but really they will love it. Swell. Can't wait for fame.

Watch video of Maroon 5 singing "If I Never See Your Face Again":

With another five minutes to kill before Seacrest could boot Castro off the show, Ryan introduced Season 4 runner-up Bo Bice, who sang his new single, "Witness." We've always been a Bo fan, but the song started out really rough. It got better as it went, but never got good enough to become a hit. Ryan asked Bo if he had any advice for the contestants and he told them to practice, practice, practice. We also found out that Bo and his wife are expecting their second child, another boy.

Watch video of Bo Bice singing "Witness":

It was finally time to send everybody home (the loser for good, the Top 3 for their hometown visits and parades, which we'll see next week). As Ryan read the judges' comments from the previous day to Jason, Castro noted that he did, in fact, pack his bags as Simon had advised him to. He also had the funniest line of the night, when he repeated that someone told him that he had shot the Tambourine Man. LOL. Ryan asked him why it's been so tough for him, and Jason said he thought his inexperience was hurting him and that moving up to two songs was difficult. After being eliminated, Ryan told Jason, "I almost feel like you're relieved." Castro said, "There's three songs next week. I don't know what I would've done."

Next week, the Top 3 will each sing three songs – judges’ choice, producers’ choice and finalist’s choice.


MSNBC is reporting that Ryan Seacrest is in negotiations to take over Larry King's role at CNN by year's end. The report suggests that Seacrest would be adding this job to his already overloaded radio and TV hosting duties, which is not at all believable. Insiders say he'd likely leave "Idol" after this season, especially because the producers are planning a major retooling of the program.

e-mail Idol Addict
© 2008