American Idol Season 12 Judges

It’s Time For American Idol To Step Up To The Plate


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What is going on with American Idol? They have seriously lost their footing on what constitutes an innovative singing show.

For Randy Jackson to say “this is the best show on TV” at the end of the performance show a couple of weeks ago speaks to the “desperate times calls for desperate measures” approach to the ratings war.

It is not the best show on TV. My reruns of Seinfeld and Frasier hold that card.

I would like to see the American Idol team just once -ONCE! – nurture talent to its full potential. They seem intent on unveiling cookie cutter stars that will make loads of money for them in a short amount of time. Short term investment for long term gain.

It would be great if they could be true visionaries like Steve Jobs, adopting his now legendary approach to the development of technology:

“It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.”
Steve Jobs – BusinessWeek, May 25 1998

And a veritable music star is a product of the machinations of the music industry – an industry that is intent on hyping young singers who have little idea of what is involved in the star process. What does it matter anymore? Lip synching rules and so does mediocrity.

Wrongly eliminated Top 8 American Idol Finalist DeAndre Brackensick’s YouTube backyard performance of “I’m Your Puppet” could be aimed at Idol. They cast these kids in a talent show, with the supposed purpose of unveiling the next big star and the end result is a reality show based on how successful the producers will be in creating drama and suspense a la a soap opera.

These singers – and the judges – indeed puppets on a string, unknowingly being exploited for the sake of “must see TV”.

This show has lost so much credibility. The only credible person left is host, Ryan Seacrest. He is laughing all the way to the bank. He is the life source and heartbeat of this show and, without him, it would be in the dumpster.

In the end, I really hold a fondness for this show but it has become lost somewhat like the prodigal son. I am just waiting for a light to come on, one that illuminates rational and brave choices in the pursuit of excellence. Maybe then, our prodigal son will come home to a wider ratio of embracing arms.

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About Masterclass Lady

Rosanne (Giallonardo) Simunovic began her musical career in Timmins, Ontario. She studied piano with Anne Pizzale and later, at an advanced level, with Soeur Anita Vaugeois (Sister Cecile of Les Soeurs De L’Assomption in Timmins). Her vocal and accompaniment skills were nurtured by her aunt, the late Dorothea Mascioli. When Rosanne graduated from O’Gorman High School, she moved on to the University of Toronto where she continued her piano and vocal studies while attaining a Bachelor of Arts Degree. She was hired as a piano accompanist for several musical companies, most notably, the National Ballet Of Canada. She presently holds an A.R.C.T. Teacher’s Diploma in Voice from the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. Rosanne has studied choral conducting with numerous well known Canadian Conductors, including Wayne Riddell of Montreal, Quebec and the internationally renowned Dr. Elmer Iseler. She has been a founding member of numerous community-based arts organizations: the Timmins Arts Council, later known as Arts & Culture Timmins, the Timmins Symphony Orchestra, and, the Timmins Youth Singers…as well as the TYS Alumnus choir, the Timmins Concert Singers. In 1987, she was also selected to be the conductor of the Timmins Board Of Education Choir, comprised of talented students from Grades 5 to 8. In 1988, she was elected to the Board Of Directors of the Ontario Choral Federation (now known as Choirs Ontario), where she served as Chair of the Festivals Committee for six consecutive seasons. In 1996, in honour of the Ontario Choral Federation’s 25th Anniversary, Rosanne was selected as one of 25 recipients of the OCF’s Distinguished Service Award for outstanding contribution to the choral art. The ceremony was presided by Lieutenant Governor, Hal Jackman. In November 1997, Rosanne Simunovic was selected by the Rotary Club Of Timmins to receive the prestigious Paul Harris Award for her years of dedication to the artistic development of young musical talent in Timmins. In August of 2002, Rosanne Simunovic was selected by the Board Of Directors of Choirs Ontario to serve as Conductor of both the Provincial Junior and Teen Choir Camps, now renamed in honour of the Camp Benefactors, Don and Lillian Wright. In November 2002, Rosanne was the one of the recipients of the Commemorative Medal for the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II, honouring her work in the development of the arts in Timmins. Under Rosanne Simunovic’s direction, the Timmins Youth Singers and the Timmins Concert Singers have been featured in numerous choral festivals and performing opportunities outside of Timmins. In 1985, they were selected to partici

40 Responses to “It’s Time For American Idol To Step Up To The Plate”

  1. You minced your words a few weeks back but I am finally glad to see that you didn’t hold back. A lot of people are feeling your sentiment. I will be surprised if this show will be on the air after a couple of more years. It will be sad to see it go no matter how frustrated we get some times.

    I was so angry and disgusted when he got voted off. I could not find the words to describe how I felt. It was the closest I have ever came to not even watching the show anymore. Then when I did watch the next week I really didn’t even enjoy it. Let’s face it. This show is not about developing the new super star. As you said it’s about fast cash and nothing more. I know he could have won the whole deal if they hadn’t held him back and threw obstacles in his way at every step. But they already had their mind made up and their lack of guidance led to his early departure. I really hope someone picks him up and guides him on his path. It’s all about choices for him once he is free of his obligations to the AI machine.

    He was so dynamic in so many ways and just absolutely natural. Nothing fake, nothing he had to work hard at. He was just absolutely masterful with his limited experience. Proof is that he went back home after the previous year of not making it and focused on all the right things to make it all the way to the live shows in one year’s time! I still miss him on the show.

    I hope you are feeling better and wish you a speedy full recovery!

  2. MCL –

    Amen!!

    I really felt that ! And it is really sad. Particularly for this season. I think some of the best talent Idol has had, is on THIS season, and after the season some of them we will never hear from again. To me each of them should be given a manager financed by Idol, that can assist them in reaching the next level. Sometimes even the winners after the first year can’t even fill a auditorium of 5000 and Idol is on to the next season, and their winner is out there like Rueben Studdard was , with a manager thats stealing all of his money. Clay …to me one of the best voices i have heard in my life …shouldn’t be with 2nd rate finished celebrities, on a show like Celebrity Apprentice just to raise $20,000 for a charity. He is bigger than that. He is a star and Idol dropped him.

    As I’ve mentioned before DeAndre is definitely one of those talents. People always say “Oh yeah, they’ll have record deals”, yeah what kind? Are they going to be playing at some Fair where the tickets are going t be 10 dollars. These kids to me are stars and after Idol, should be treated like that. Those judges and producers make millions. Some of those millions Idol makes, I think should be used to nurture these talents .

    You took me there MCL. I’m usually not a complainer like that . especially about Idol, because I love it, but it would be nice, like you said if they did it just once.

    Now I’m mad :-(

  3. Thanks so much. As I said, this article has been “in the queue” for today’s publication. I am so “under the weather”, I forgot about it and David’s monthly retrospective series.

    But, in terms of this article, I am glad you are feeling what I am feeling. The results show last night as so ridiculous. How can they even stand there and say that Hollie and Skylar should be Bottom 2 and the Top 3 were correct? Honestly.

    Taymaro – thanks for your concern. On the mend just really wiped. Lost 3 lbs. in 2 days thanks to this stupid stomach bug.

  4. MCL, I was thinking the same thing. That was such a ridiculous statement to make. As I was reading back and catching up Vonnie touched on something that had crossed my mind a few weeks back when DeAndre was eliminated. I was watching an interview where he revealed that as a child his family had been taken in by a Hawaiian family when he was a child. That is how he ended up in Hawaii and how he fell in love with Hawaiian culture. That surely would have been a compelling back story and generated lots of support for him. I think for that reason alone is why they decided to steer away from the back stories this year. They had their choices already in mind and they didn’t want something like that to mess up their plan and push someone to popularity that they weren’t counting on.

    On the official AI website it states that the AI producers and Telescope reserve the right to disallow votes that they feel are suspicious and I think they play around with it some and use that clause to justify it but I do think the tampering is limited as they are afraid it will become public.

    Wow! 3 lbs in two days! I really feel for you!

  5. Rosanne,

    Niles Crane and Elaine Benas, all the way!!

  6. ParleyBlue/Henry May 4, 2012 at 6:38 pm

    Ha Frasier, my all time favorite.
    The way Idol has always exploited the talent and manipulated the fans has been a big gripe of mine for years. It seemed they just wanted to find someone to sell millions for a bit and then on to the next shiny object. And now it seems to have become a showcase for the judges. No, it should not be about the judges projects and it wasn’t in its early years. No development of talent at all, just rush something out when the excitement is fresh and on to the next. A few from the early years have hung on, but even their talent has not been cultivated, just harvested.
    And a few on their own have used their time in the spotlight to carve out a nice career.

  7. The judges over praise these kids to the point that I am thinking What???? Did they hear the same performace I did? I never watch until the top 10 and then sometimes I just watch the ending to see the re-cap of all the performances. It has for the most part gotten painful to watch, with the over praising, the fake drama and the realization that it does not matter who wins. Idol will sign as many of the top 10 as they see fit and start molding them into cookie cutter singers. Whoever, looks like they will sell the most CD’s will be the one they throw their promo money behind whether they are the winner or not. It’s time for Idol to give it up.

  8. I’m sorry you’re disturbed about the way things are going – I know what a source of joy the show used to be for you. You’ve done a great job of communicating your issues and position – but I don’t agree.

    A few quick notes –
    (1) NO ONE listens to Randy (he’s a buffoon).
    (2) Cookie cutter? Adam Lambert – really? (I could name a dozen others)
    (3) Ryan is good – but in my opinion Cat Deely is 10 times the host Ryan could ever hope to be.
    (4) The industry is a mess, but that’s not Idol’s fault – nor can Idol single handedly fix it.

    At the end of the day Idol is a reality show that exists to make money for the network (the same network that cancelled Firefly). The networks don’t put Idol on to nurture future artists or for the betterment of humanity. They’re a bunch of suits that want more viewers, more rating points, and more money for their stockholders – period.

    All these contestants signed up to be on a reality show. No one held a gun to their head. They are NOT as you say “Unknowing exploited puppets”. If they hadn’t watched the show before they auditioned and signed the paperwork then shame on them.

    America votes and advances the people they like. Idol is nothing if not ONE BIG FOCOUS GROUP. For it to be different – there would have to be an incentive to change, but as long as Idol is one of the most watched shows on TV – that’s not going to happen.

    The network is not about making risky choices in pursuit of excellence, or to advance the arts. They won’t be visionaries unless it meets their needs. Networks are in business to sell ads and make money. As long as Idol does that it will be on – and not a minute longer.

    I’m afraid we all get caught putting our passion, faith and hope in institutions that have no sense of responsibility and that don’t share our goals and values. Try to see Idol for what it is, and marvel that the producers are able to nurture and prepare contestants to the extent that they do. I understand your position and wish Idol could be otherwise – but I don’t believe it can.

  9. I agree with ladyhelix pretty much. I will be glad to see David Cook back for another performance,this time his new single The Last Song I’ll Write For You. David is a perfect example of an extremely talented artist hamstrung by his Idol winning record contract. Who knows maybe the song is telling us something about where David is going with his career post RCA. I for one can’t wait to see him free of a major label,and able to write the kind of songs he wants to. I’m waiting anxiously for next Thursday.

  10. ladyhelix, So what you are actually saying is that you do agree with MCL’s opinion of the show but you are okay with it? Seems everything you said there supports her article but yet you prefaced it by saying you disagree? I don’t understand that approach but I do understand the point you are trying to make in accepting it for what it is. But with that attitude I guess we should have never revolted against mother England. Just sayin…….

  11. Taymora

    I guess, I’m not getting Layhelix either. In fact I’m beginning to think I’m missing a whole lot of whats being said in response to MCL’s article.

    MCL said Ryan was the “lifesource and heartbeat of the show” and Ladyheliix said she disigreed “Ryan is good” ???? I don’t get it …thats exactly what MCL was saying . Maybe I missed something? Did I misunderstand something?

    Then Ladyhelix questioned the use of the name “Adam Lambert”? I went back to the article and nothing about “Adam Lambert” is there. Was there something about Adam Lambert said someplace that I didn’t read.? I;m just trying to see what I missed out on.
    Maybe it did’nt show on my screen.

    Did MCL or somebody here say something somewhere about Idol fixing all the problems in the industry? I didn’t read that.

    I hope somebody responds, because I’m lost ….or maybe I misunderstood everythinng MCL was saying.

    Anybody here can help me ….because it looks like I;m way off.

  12. LadyHelix – first of all, thank you for your opinion. However, I will stand by mine. Idol encourages singers who will be quick cash cows for them. Otherwise, Adam Lambert would be a superstar by now.

    The singers that have enjoyed singular success fit cash cow niches = country and pop.

    Many idol finalists either have run away from the Idol contract or are biding time until they can. That, in itself, says something.

    And why hasn’t Adam been on the show lately? I find this disgusting. He is one of the greater vocal talents to have graced that stage.

    The reason I wrote the article had to do with the manner in which some extremely gifted artists have been treated over the years and, especially, this year. They are not nurturing excellence – just money. Sometimes risk is a good thing – you need it to cultivate change for the better.

    Ryan Seacrest is an absolute gem. He is untouchable. Cat Deeley is terrific but she is not Ryan in any way, shape or form.

  13. Thank you for the opportunity to share my views, and I apologize for not being more clear. That happens sometimes when I get all “impassioned”. To clarify..

    BROTHERKARL:
    * I don’t deny Ryan is “good” – but he is NOT replaceable.

    * MCL talked about Idol being intent on producing cookie cutter stars. I disagreed and raised Adam as an example of a star who is NOT cookie cutter.

    * As far as the industry comment – yes – MCL spent a whole paragraph on it (after the Steve Jobs quote). I simply pointed it out, because it’s not Idol’s fault nor can Idol change it.

    MASTERCLASS LADY:
    Thank you again for the opportunity to comment – I didn’t mean to offend!! I respect your opinion – and didn’t imagine I’d change your mind! I agree – the music business is brutal, and going in as a reality show personality makes it ten times harder.

    I actually find myself being more protective and more easily disgusted with the “IDOL Machine” now that they contestants are just children. I know they’ve watched since season 1, and I know the business needs that demographic – but it seems SO much more manipulative with kids like Holly & DeAndre. I felt like Carley, David Cook, and Adam knew who they were and knew the game they were up against whereas these younger kids are just drinking the kool-aid. (Are you drinking the kool aid?). I feel very protective but at the end of the day – it’s just business. BIG Business. As a parent I try not to limit my kids, but I WOULD draw a hard and non-negotiable line in the sand if they wanted to audition (or I would pray they wouldn’t make it). It’s exploitive and it’s my job as a parent to keep my kids safe. The network has no responsibility for that – AND they have no soul. If we pretend they do we’ll get hurt.

    * Adam is scheduled to perform on the 5/17 results show – Yea!!

    We agree about the things that are going on on Idol right now – but I guess where we differ is in our belief about whether the network cares, whether they feel a sense of moral and artistic responsibility toward the contestants and the industry, and whether any of this can or will change. Usually I’m the optimist, but this time you own that end of the spectrum!! I’ve seen too much to think they care – or that it will change. But please – don’t stop being hopeful on my account – and thank you for letting me share (my doom & gloom).

  14. ooops – – Ryan is not IRreplacable (sorry)

  15. MCL, As you know, I am a long time reader of your blog, but I seldom comment. I just wanted to add that not only are the judges not “nurturing excellence” but they are encouraging several bad habits. I can’t imagine Joshua’s voice holding up from screaming his way through the Idol Tour. If memory serves, Joshua did none of that in the early stages of the competition, but has added more and more as the show progressed.

    And encouraging Holly and Jessica to attack songs? Conveying emotion in a song should come from the singer’s timbre, vocal runs and licks, not from “attacking” it. Again, how will their voices hold up in the long run?

    I think the ENT doctor will be kept very busy in the next few months. Even technically correct singers have been known to take steroid injections to get through the finale. I feel for these kids and the Idol machine is to blame.

  16. Lady Helix – thanks so much once again. I can see your points very clearly now.

    However, someone, somewhere has to take the initiative to step up and start producing quality stars, quality shows etc. The quality and care behind the writing has just plummeted. No more creativity – they can’t even spell that word anymore.

    If the public just sits back and stays silent, then we are willing partners in this road to mediocrity.

    Where are all the variety shows? This is dating me , I know. But Ed Sullivan, Carol Burnett, the late Dick Clark and Lawrence Welk all were masters of this. I know I am forgetting many other names, so I apologize for this.

    What a platform this could be for rising stars. No judging. Just pure, unbridled entertainment celebrating genres of every type and color.

    Sunday night entertainment where families gather around the TV are a distant memory. It is so sad. Is it any wonder that people are watching reruns of Seinfeld and Frasier and Mary Tyler Moore and Newhart and Dick Van Dyke and Golden Girls in order to fill the void. This was writing and acting at its best and television should be leading the way toward continued excellence.

  17. Janey79 – very well said. I don’t know what is wrong with this show this year. When did screaming become singing? Honestly. It is so ridiculous. Then someone like Hollie and DeAndre and, to a certain extent, Jessica come out and sing with nuance and finesse and they are put through the ringer? Nonsense. Absolute and utter nonsense and rubbish

  18. MCL, I long for the day variety shows make a comeback!

  19. Thanks LadyHellix for clarifying that …both times;-)

    I did have one thought to throw out there that I’d like see what you have to say on .

    I know you can;t change the industry no matter what kind of “mess” it may be in , no more than you can change the world. What I think you can do however is prepare these new talents for the some of the “mess” or challenges they may encounter as they’re working in the industry. Off the top of my head …things like .. decisions that could be counter productive to an artist’s career , signs of bad management company’s, what to do about slumps, public relations, contracts, different things that can keep or not keep an artist growing and from being ripped off… working with them as they start off in areas like that.

    Some of the talents on Idol are awesome ….some that don;t even make top three (like DeAndre, for example) and as soon as the tour is over some little rip off person is right there to sign them … and then most of the top 10’s we never hear from them again. I think if Idol worked with them for at least a year after the show with some of those things I mentioned, they could all be super stars. They don’t have to give them recording contracts but they can give them ongoing coaching as to what things to do and avoid so that they can land the best deals and go on to super star level. Idol knows how, because they are all in touch super stars. Idol helping them, like this doesn’t fix the mess in industry, but it would help their top tens avoid a lot of its pits falls. If they did they wouldn’t have to resort to reality shows a low budget movies, and broadway plays so quickly to enhance their careers. Doing concerts that seat less than 1000? Come on now. If a singer has been in the business less then 10 years and they are already there, something has definitely gone wrong.

    Thats what I’d like to see Idol do for these singers … but may be thats a little over the top. May be that wouldn’t be enough. May be Idol has done all it thinks it should, I don;t know.

  20. Brother Karl – which brings me back to my Puppet theory. American Idol does indeed give all these kids varying degrees of exposure but, if someone, say like DeAndre and, now, Hollie is not one of the chosen ones, Idol can be very detrimental to their careers.

    All that negative backlash is just so harmful to their self-esteem and public image. And, it’s hypocritical. They chose ALL these singers for the Top 24 and should be embracing each and every one of them, giving them consecutive criticism and guidance for self-improvement.

    For Jimmy Iovine to say that Hollie’s “Bleeding Love” was not magical and just average was just so ridiculous and dishonest. Everyone I spoke to says they loved it – it was just beautiful and heartfelt.

    And then, to say that DeAndre would be in the bottom on results night before he even performed during performance night? Mean beyond words. This guy (Jimmy) is so mean-spirited – I’m glad he can sleep at night.

  21. Brava! Brava! You are a Lady after my own heart MCL! Why bring these young aspiring young artists on national television just to tear them down? That is unforgivable if you ask me. And when you do it with blatant lies and insults it sinks to a criminal level if you ask me.

    There should be some recourse for these young people when these influential figures get in front of a camera and act in a way that is detrimental to their financial success and life fulfilling goals. Especially when it’s absolute falsehoods that they are spewing. There should at least be some balancing views that are aired by people that are just as prominent in the music industry to neutralize the degrading remarks, lies and innuendo. We need more voices like yours, MCL, to bring things back to the way they should be. This is a travesty that we are witnessing right before our very eyes.

  22. What a great blog topic! I agree with MCL all the way.

    I was outraged when Jimmy said that Hollie’s version of “Bleeding Love” was just competent. He knows that is pure bull! But he has to find a way to undermine her yet again. This girl gave two outstanding performances and showed off her talent for the world to see. The songs she picked were so high in difficulty as to be off the charts. Yet she triumphed in the best sense of the word. This should be celebrated, not demeaned!

    I think we get what we settle for in this world. If we are going to just throw in the towel and say – it is what it is, can’t fight it, the reality of the music business, etc. – then we will continue to get mediocrity and shameless machinations and manipulation. The judges have been dishonest in much of their comments about the performances. They are misleading these young people and giving bad advice such as this absurd notion that they have to sing harder, louder, bigger, whatever. These kids are pushing themselves and not in a good way. They should have called out Joshua for the screaming and shouting. But they have encouraged it, even though he is doing it without proper technique. Now I feel that Joshua is starting to use it as a crutch, like he feels that he has to do it. His voice is strong enough to stand on its own. Shame on the judges for not giving him constructive advice and encouraging him to develop and showcase other wonderful aspects of his voice.

    The judges also didn’t say one word about Philip missing those falsetto notes in “Time of the Season”. Are they deaf? It’s their job to keep it real. No wonder America has pretty much tuned them out. They are cartoon characters who are there merely for entertainment value. We are not asking for moon in wanting some coherent and intelligent judging. It’s been done on The Voice this season. We heard the judges talking about breath control. performance value, pitch, phrasing and also good constructive criticism that these young people can take with them after the show. If they can do it, why can’t Idol? Isn’t The Voice just as much about the almighty dollar? Then why do these judges try to give the contestants substantive information?

    Let’s stop making excuses for Idol. We should demand more. There was a time when record companies did nurture and develop talent. Motown did that for black artists in the early sixties. They didn’t have it easy. They struggled to get airplay on radio stations that wanted to play music from white singers. They had to battle every step of the way, but they worked with their artists and trained them to hone their craft. It paid off in hugh dividends. Motown made its mark on the music landscape.

    Now the record companies are intent on cashing in as quickly as possible. Throw these young kids out there and let them sink or swim. Or even worse, in some cases actually sabotage them with poor performance placement, negative critiques and even dissing them before they have performed! Yes, I am talking about Deandre. He was treated disgracefully. They did it to Erika and then were even more abominable to Hollie.

    When I played back my recording of the show last week, I was shocked to hear the judges giving themselves a pat on the back and actually taking credit for Hollie’s good performances! What utter gall! They said that now she was doing what they wanted her to do. No, they were the ones who lied to her and told her she was off key all the time. Hollie has done better due to her own perseverance, courage and dedication. The only good advice she has gotten was from some of the mentors. The judges deserve zero credit for what she did this week. She did it in spite of them, Jimmy and the producers. She is like a little miracle. God bless her for getting to the top four and messing up their plans.

    Thank you, MCL for demancing excellence and for not being willing to settle for mediocrity, shabbiness and unprofessional behavior.

    Brava and standing “O” from me!

  23. MCL and Taymaro:

    Got it!! What you are both saying is that these kids are on national TV with these guys saying that they are awful …and then they are expected to go out to build their careers with these nasty comments (for all intents and purposes) on their resumes and in their heads. Got it!!

    When I was coming up televised talents shows were not about who was getting “voted off” they were all about those who made it that far ..those who won.. I;m not remembering shows like “Star Search” ever telling its contestants how bad they were. But ever since “reality Tv” its always been about being “brutally honest” . I think it started with that show called “The Weakest Link”, she would alway say “you are the weakest link …goodbye”. People thought it was so funny, but it was actually very degrading. Same with “Survivor” the shows weren’t about who survived the island, it was always about who was “voted off”, Very negative. When Idol was born, they just picked up on it and went into details about how bad the singers were. Simon got rich off of degrading all the talents that made him rich and everybody saw it and thought, thats how you do it.

    Thats awful!! I think they think they are preparing them for the real world, but no one back in the day would ever get on TV and say the nasty things people say about others on TV today.

    If they feel the hard critiques are necessary, then I think it would be more appropriately done privately and not on national TV. As I always say …these kids beat out thousands …so there’s no way they could be as awful as the judges say, unless the judges are just out picking awful people which is not the case. I always enjoy the talent that make it to the top 24.

    I guess I’m dating myself by talking about all of this “back in the day” stuff …but I agree MCL …if just for one season ….they could affirm the talents of ALL their top 24 or at least their top 10 …they’d probably have the most successful top 10 that season that ever had. That would get them going.

  24. Taymaro, Mindy, BotherKarl – thank you for your excellent input. Strong passionate words and I love every word, phrase and paragraph.

    Mindy – how right you are when you said that “we get what we settle for”. It’s true. Sometimes the cradle needs to be rocked big time to evoke change.

    I am a huge Steve Jobs fan. Huge! And he was so right when he said that you can’t let the consumer decide what constitutes quality and innovation. That takes work, money, dedication and vision and most people do not have this stellar kind of vision. Nor do they have the patience.

    I think that someone HUGE has to evoke this change – someone with power and with their heart in the right place. But we can start right here on this little ‘ole blog, can’t we? What could it hurt? And I feel it is a step in the right direction.

  25. I have to say I still miss DeAndre. How they could just throw him away like that was shameful. Rosanne, have you listened to his studio version of “Sometimes I Cry” ? I is one of the finest recordings I’ve ever heard. His vocals are so very phenomenal. I think it’s a masterpiece!

  26. Anita – I still have to listen to his studio recordings. Now, you’ve piqued my curiosity. Going to download it now. Thank you!

  27. MLC

    I’m not anyone huge but after reading these post today, I’ve decided that I’m going to make some changes in regards to how I personally speak about these Idol contestants. As I said earlier they have all proven already that they are fantastic singers
    as they were picked out of thousands to star on one the the country’s most popular shows. That proves that they are exceptional and thats the way I’m going to speak of them all from now on …thanks to todays article. Thanks for putting it out there

  28. Aww – BrotherKarl. Thank you. Although, I do find all your comments very respectful. You have made valuable contributions to the discussions here and I appreciate this very much.

  29. Rosanne-I know you’ll love it! DeAndre’s versions of I Like It and Master Blaster are stunning also, but “Sometimes I Cry” is just beyond words!!

  30. I listened to it and an speechless. Will probably add a blog topic about it Anita. Thanks for bringing it to my attention!!

  31. I have already downloaded all the studio recordings of DeAndre and I enjoy listening to them every day. I recommend them to anyone who has an ear for great musical talent.

    I will say this in Simon Cowell’s defense and you may be surprised in this coming from me. I actually think he went in the right direction with “The X Factor”. Yes there is still that certain level of harshness to the criticism but once on the live shows there is always at least one of four judges on your side and telling you how good the performance was.

    Also as the judges are also competing against each other as mentors and leaders of their respective team, the contestants are reassured in the fact that the bad comments can be taken with a grain of salt because each judge wants the other judge’s contestants eliminated first.

    And one more point is that there is always shared blame when a performance goes bad. The mentors are responsible for the staging and if the production goes bad they share in the blame. It’s almost as if Simon wanted to make sure that the judge’s, who are doing the critiquing, also had their own head on the chopping blog along with the contestant.

    It is the same with “The Voice”. I think these two formats are a better way of showcasing the talent without ruining them in the process. And it still serves the purpose of entertaining TV at the same time. Just my two cents.

  32. blog = block…LOL

  33. Mindy Moore, you touched on the subject of the Idol judges and I briefly brought them it in a round-about-way earlier in the thread. Remind me again, what do they get paid for?

  34. Kelly Clarkson is a good example of someone who had to rebel against the Idol Machine to make it and now she’s the most recognized pop artist worldwide from the show. But of course, not everyone can do this successfully. Everyone is making good points, but it will take a lot of work for such a correct platform to exist again. And while The Voice has better judging, the platform kind of doesn’t allow for the very best singers to advance. The coaches also eliminate a lot of the good talent prematurely so the result is that the talent pool is less impressive, in my opinion.
    Kelly and now Adam Lambert (executive producing his second album which after hearing is an excellent work far superior to his Idol inspired first album) have broken from the mold and have/will continue to be successful because of it.
    It will really sadden me if a highly skilled vocalist like Jessica isn’t nurtured into a viable RnB star at show’s end, because she’s worked hard and Idol can make this happen.
    I’m not sure if Joshua’s vocal stylings can translate to worldwide star, but Idol needs to at least try if he wins. With him and all their other good talent.

  35. Rosanne-See! I told you! BEYOND WORDS!!! Just listening to him sing that song makes you wonder if you should laugh or cry. There sure better be a record label that will take DeAndre under their wing and take excellent care of him and respect his talent, and help him create exceptional music.

  36. janey79,

    I don’t know what they get paid for. I think these days it’s to promote their own pet career projects. Jennifer has previewed her latest video and if you notice, there are commercials on Idol featuring her and Steven Tyler. I know that last season Steven wrote a book and promoted it with the help of the show and will be going on tour this year. I really think that is why these two are on the show.

    It has become almost comical listening to them each week. I would rather have no judges than these three. I also dislike Jennifer constantly looking down at her cheat sheet when she has to give her comments. She should be responding spontaneously. It’s not like this is a thesis or a speech. All she has to do is give some brief comments about the performance. Seeing her look down all the time is distracting and annoying. It also gives the impression that she is being told what to say, which may well be true.

    Malcolm,

    I agree with your comments about The Voice. There are some serious problems with the format, but the judging has been far superior to what we have seen on Idol. It is nice to see the judges assuming some of the responsibility when a performance doesn’t totally work. They are so much more respectful towards all the contestants. MCL has spoken about the fact you brought up, that the judges eliminated more talented singers. Their judges exercise more control throughout the process. They had instant eliminations in the quarterfinals, I think. So the judges took out one from their team before America voted. And I don’t think they all made the right decision.

    With all of the propaganda about Hollie from Jimmy and the judges, I think this girl went out on that stage and showed that she can be a viable commercial artist. She just owned “Bleeding Love” and Liona Lewis is no slouch in the singing department. Why can’t Hollie have a hit like that? Goodness knows, we need some decent voices in American music. Right now the great female singers have come from the UK, including Liona.

  37. Hi MCL ~ I hope you are feeling better today. I am getting better slowly but surely. Being sick really makes life miserable!

    First, I have been watching Season 8 and Adam Lambert was a star even before Idol. He just needed a showcase for his talent. He made the right moves and we got to see it. David A. is a star in his own way and will probably end up being a Broadway star. I have encouraged him to take dancing lessons. David Cook is what an American Idol star should be like. I love Taylor’s involvement with charities. What a kind man. I could go on and on, but the point is that Idol has provided some great talent.

    Ben Folds, Shawn Stockman (of the R&B vocal group Boyz II Men), and Sara Bareilles from THE SING-OFF are the best judges on Reality TV. I have suggested to nigel that he have the American Idol judges watch that show to learn how the job needs to be done!

  38. I totally support your feelings and those of the participants here! I have wondered of the judges drink or smoke pot before the show starts. They have been so off the last few weeks but last Wednesday was the worst ever. They didn’t give honest analysis and criticism when needed. This over-praise of Joshua is getting absurd. He’s a good singer – but the best ever stuff is stupid. In the end, they may cost Joshua the titel.

    I totally support Jessica for the win and think Holly is a lovely girl. The judges have led these girls to believe certain things that are not true. Don’t they know how to be helpful? Now, I don’t want any Simon type judges on this show, but change needs to be made. One of the judges needs to go next season.

    The themes this week sound interesting. I hope they all do well. With some honesty, but not going overboard, Phillip needs to be told it’s time to go home. The TOP 3 should be able to sing and entertain. I am not interested in seeing JLo, but hope David performs with perfection!

  39. I now treat AI as a variety show …just sit back and enjoy the great new talent…win or lose many will get a contract and winning is no guarantee of success. Of course each year…Elise and Hollie this year….some contestant makes me vote for I truly want to hear them the next week; Yes the judging sucks, they have favorites offer no advice or bad advice…the viewers are tone deaf or vote for the cutest or actually vote for someone with talent or don’t vote at all and leave it to others. Its amazing the best sometimes rise to the top. Its a tv show whose main concern it to make money and stay on the air. Would I change it to actually mentor and nurture the contestants yes I would but it may then actually not be as successful on tv or the recording industry. Its a tough business and the top 10% underwrite the 90% who don’t make a dime for the label. Ten years and 100 top 10 contestants how many are making it in the recording business a handful its the nature of the business.

    As for Adam Lambert I think AI has treated him very well his time on the show they treated him as the de facto winner before he lost and after he lost. He was on the show in 2010 to promote his single WWFM..in 2011 he mentored and performed the same week and they will have him on this year May 17 the week his new cd comes out…how much better treatment can they give him. He wasn’t a winner and is not even among the top 10 most successful Idol acts.

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