Is Paul McDonald, Lauren Alaina, or Scotty McReery likely to win “American Idol”?


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Hey, Hey – – don’t shoot the messenger. I just read this over at HollywoodNews.Com and I thought it would make for some lively discussion here on MasterclassLady.Com.

Somewhere in the comments section of the last two blog topics, I predicted a Lauren/Scotty finale. This isn’t necessarily what I want to see happen – it is just a “gut” prediction based on what I have seen evolve during the course of this show since January.

So, it is more important than ever to pick a favorite and vote for him or her. No more vote splitting! This is going to be a very tight race until the end.

Also, if you are more confused than ever, I would hop on over to the AmericanIdol.Com site, click on the contestant’s picture and have a look and listen to the Top 9 singers’ Final Hollywood Performance. It is quite revelatory and gives you a strong sense of what these singers can achieve post-Idol.

Then, let me know what you think. You just might end up changing your mind! What we see on stage doesn’t necessarily highlight the full potential of some of these singers.

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

49 Responses to “Is Paul McDonald, Lauren Alaina, or Scotty McReery likely to win “American Idol”?”

  1. I’m sorry MCL, I posted the above comment on the wrong thread. If you can take it down, I would very much appreciate it.

    I thought your original point about Scotty and Lauren was well founded in the facts of this season. When I posted my opinion on the subject, I was only making an adjustment to your observations based on traditional voting patterns which would likely leave Lauren out in the cold in third place. Paul is probably the closest thing to the more recent winners.

    You are absolutely correct about vote splitting at this point. I quit splitting after the top 24. There was still more than one contestant I liked, but I had to decide which one I truly thought was Idol material, and then it was easy.

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  2. Here’s a listing of all the top 24 contestants’ final Hollywood performances:
    http://www.americanidol.com/search/videos/?q=hollywood

    *

    The gist of the article’s argument is that since Paul, Lauren, and Scotty are the only three contestants left from the South, one of those three might win.

    My response: Maybe, but I find a prediction based purely on regional origin too simplistic, and I think it does a disservice to contestants by downplaying talent. Perhaps, hometown support is stronger for contestants from the South, but I don’t think anyone wins American Idol without recruiting plenty of fans from other regions as well, and the interplay of having voting fans in many regions might be more important in the end.

    I am from California, and I’ve had maybe one favorite from my home state. All my other favorites have been from other states, and the way it turned out, a few of them were from the South. My point is that there is no regional pattern to my favorites. I vote for contestants whose voices and artistry appeal to me the most, regardless of whatever place they come from, and I don’t think I’m the only viewer who votes this way.

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  3. Thanks for the link, J. I meant to add it but was distracted here. Busy revising some details on my site. 🙂

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  4. nothingspecial April 4, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    I think either Scotty, Casey, or James is likely to win as each has a y chromosome and a large fanbase. Really, I don’t think any of the remaining girls will place higher than top four. The last three winners have been male. The top fours of AI 7,8, and 9 consisted of three males and one female, and the top twos of AI 7 and 8 consisted of two men. Realistically, these singers could stand silently for 1:30-2:00 minutes each week with probably only a limited negative voter response.

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  5. From what I read (I only saw the final that year), Kelly Clarkson won Season 1 because she was far and away the most talented contestant. And if you ask someone from Texas, they aren’t from the South. Texas is its own entity. Tamyra Gray, the only singer who apparently could come close to Clarkson’s talent, was from Georgia, which is a solidly Southern state.

    The top 3 in Season 2 were all Southerners, so it would have been hard to not have a Southerner win. And I would argue that all three deserved their spots.

    By the time we got to the last month of Season 3, there was no doubt as to who would win, and it had to do with sheer talent and performance skills. Where Fantasia was from was irrelevant.

    Carrie Underwood is from Oklahoma, which, last time I looked, is not considered to be part of the South. Yes, she sings country music, but she is the only winner among 9 who does. And yes, Bo Bice is a Southerner. But again, I think the right two people ended up in the finals, no matter where they were from.

    Season 5: Taylor Hicks was so dang popular, and yes, being a charming Southern boy probably played a part in that. Did the fact that Chris Daughtry always looked to be in a bad mood, even if his comments belied that, have something to do with why he didn’t win and why Taylor did? And why Katherine McPhee and Elliot Yamin out-stayed him? I wouldn’t be surprised.

    Season 6: Jordin Sparks beat out five Southerners, including Melinda Doolittle, who had the better voice, and Phil Stacey, who now has three albums out, one more than Jordin does.

    Season 7: David Cook is from Texas, although I had forgotten that fact. See above. He is a Texan who doesn’t seem particularly Texan (Houstonians don’t necessarily have the strong accent you associate with the rest of the state), and he certainly doesn’t go the country music or Southern rock route. But David Archuleta is from Florida, although one can argue that Miami, Florida is a northern city. Anyway, a Texan beat the Southerner.

    Season 8: Kris Allen was indeed a Southerner, but he was also a likable and talented fellow who made a great come from behind, and was up against a polarizing Adam Lambert.

    Season 9: There were three people from Florida; did the Southern voting machine fall apart last year?

    There are plenty of Southerners who got voted off in past seasons, and to say that the Southerners who won got there for reasons other than their talent is disrespectful. There are many things that go into someone’s voting choice, after all, and it isn’t like the voters are representative of America as a whole, in any case, given that there are probably more teens and tweens voting than many other age groups, and that you can vote multiple times.

    I have noticed during the audition processes in the past few years that the South does seem to have some of the best voices. Why, I don’t know. This year, it was particularly noticeable (and remember how some people noted back during the auditions that there were so many country singers going through that it seemed possible that they would dominate the final 12? But only two did?)

    Votefair.org says Lauren Alaina simply isn’t popular enough to win, and I agree, she does have her detractors. If I were placing a bet, my money would not be on her.

    I think it takes a real stretch of the imagination to see Paul McDonald win . . . That alone blows the credibility of the article, in my view! 

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  6. I really enjoyed your commentary, Jeanne, and I respect your fearlessness in saying some of the things I wanted to say but didn’t. 😉

    You made some very good points: one of which is that even the definition of the South is contested. I have heard other viewers mention in the past, as you did, that some Americans do not include Texas or Oklahoma in the South.

    I just wanted to make a few “corrections” to your comment, not to invalidate your argument (since I agree with you), but just to clarify things in anticipation of other comments.

    David Cook was born in Texas, but he was raised in Missouri (again, a state that is not always considered part of the South), and the latter is where he listed his hometown. Similarly, David Archuleta was born in Florida but was raised in Utah, and he considers his hometown Murray, Utah.

    Also, in season 9, Aaron Kelly was born in Florida but considers his hometown Sonestown, Pennsylvania, so in fact, there were only two top 12 contestants who considered their origin Florida (Michael Lynche and Paige Miles). Not a huge point, but just thought I’d clarify anyway! =P You’re right that there weren’t that many Southern contestants last year, though. Didi is from Tennessee (again, origin but not birthplace), and there were three Texans, but that was pretty much it.

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  7. Oh, I just took your point of view a little further. For once, you were more succinct than me! 😉

    Well, when I meant Texas is not part of the South, I meant that from the Texan’s point of view! 🙂 There are probably many Americans who nevertheless think of it as part of the South, due to the accent if nothing else, and I stand corrected – the US Census Bureau, which breaks the country into four regions, lumps both Texas and Oklahoma in with the South (although then they go further and create divisions, wherein those two states, along with Arkansas and Louisiana, make up the Southcentral division.) And I can see putting those four states in one grouping. Although I must say that I have always thought of Oklahoma as being part of the Midwest, but I am probably wrong there. I’m an Easterner (mid-Atlantic), so I come into it with my own prejudices!

    Thanks, I didn’t think I remembered David Cook as being from Texas, but I remember the Missouri connection, now that you mention it. And ditto for David A. I just did some quick searches on the internet and so may have gotten any number of them wrong, if the source material was wrong. Where they come from doesn’t matter much to me, so I haven’t memorized anyone’s hometowns (or jobs before Idol, or any of that!)

    Congrats on your new “shindig”!

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  8. Oh, and Missouri is in the midwest, according to the Census Bureau, although it is probably a tweener, depending on the part of the state that you’re from.

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  9. Jeanne . . . as a fellow mid-Atlantic Easterner, I too think of Oklahoma as being in the Midwest.

    As for this article, there is just no way that Paul McDonald is going to win Idol, but I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Scotty wins. I and it seems others who post here are really charmed by him in addition to appreciating his voice–even though we’re not country music fans. But even though Alaina is talented, she has apparently rubbed people the wrong way, so it seems highly doubtful that she’ll win. But anything can happen based on their future performances, right?

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  10. That article made some generalizations without taking into account the respective fan bases, talent, music style, likeability and the many components that I believe make up each season’s Idol winner. I also have heard people refer to the midwestern and southern states as “red” states versus the blue states of the northeast and the west coast and the middle atlantic. It’s almost like a political divide between more conservative and more liberal. I don’t know that I subscribe to that generalization, either.

    As far as the contention that it will be either Paul, Lauren or Scotty, I think that’s assuming quite a bit. The only one that I believe has a real shot at winning is Scotty and it has nothing to do with where he comes from. Paul will not win this competition. In fact, I am thinking that his days may be numbered. I like to think that voice does matter to the voters who watch this show. They may not have the technical knowledge, but I believe that they can hear what sounds good and what does not.

    I loved nothingspecial’s comment about having a “y” chromosome! Now that may well be a real advantage! I think Paul has stayed on because of his looks, that smile, those teeth and for some it could be about his vocal style, that raspy, husky, distinctive sound that many really like. However, I feel that he has only had one decent performance and the rest have been subpar. His voice is showing the effects of his poor vocal technique and we know that he has a nodule on his vocal chords. His vocals have been compromised and, as a result, I think his overall performances have suffered. I don’t think the “y” chromosome and looks factor will be enough to get him the win.

    Lauren has a great voice. She has been improving with every performance. However, she is badly lacking in maturity, poise, self-awareness, all the things one would expect with a sixteen year old. When she speaks to the judges or Ryan, she puts her foot in her mouth. She can be a bit whiny and self-indulgent. In other words, she is your typical teenager! 🙂 I think waiting a year or two would have helped her immeasurably. She may have a nice run here if she can continue to bring strong vocals, however I see her chance of winning as slim to none.

    Scotty is the one out of these three who does have a very real chance of winning. First, that bass/baritone voice! Oh my goodness, the chills I get when he starts singing. You don’t hear this kind of voice that often, but when it comes along then you realize how special it is and how powerful. He was just born with a God given gift and has the opportunity to have an incredible career. He also has that good ole boy southern charm, the likeability factor and a sense of being real and genuine. What you see is what you get, no artifice or superficiality or affectations. It’s enormously appealing. I am curious to see if he will try to take any risks or break out of his country style as the competition progresses. Can he win this by just staying true to who he is? Is he risking being boring or too much of the same every week or will it be that American cannot get enough of him? We will have to wait and see.

    Scotty could benefit so much from just some basic vocal technical skills. He also can improve his performing style. He should take a look at Josh Turner and realize that he stands up straight, not leaning to one side. He can also hold his notes and has managed to make full use of his considerable vocal range. I am not sure if Scotty has as much range as Josh. When he goes for the higher notes, they sound strained and that comes from the lack of vocal technique, proper breathing, good posture. I think Scotty doesn’t even really know what his voice can do. I would love to see him have the chance to explore the potential of that voice.

    I guess that in the end, what I am saying is that having the “y” chromosome is the real advantage rather than geographic location. Scotty is the only one who has a chance to win out of those three. I don’t see Paul sticking around that much longer. There is too much talent in this group and enough diversity and variety of music genres. How long Lauren stays may depend on how well she can handle the pressure of this competition.

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  11. Louise, we share the same middle name, similar opinions, and now I learn we are both from the mid-Atlantic.

    Are we the same person???

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  12. I’m an East Coaster…so you could call me a “tweener”, I’m tween the north and the south; Yeah! I’m from one of those states! 😉

    Jeanne and Louise; how many states over are ya from me?

    I think any one of these kids has a shot at being in the finale; even Paul! Rickey, (the one Mj talks about alot) he not only predicted that Paul would make top 12, but he went on to predict that he thought he would win the whole thing…me I’m not so sure, but after last week this will get the sparkly whites fan base voting!!!

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  13. OK – I did not want to jinx them (because I tend to like the “different” contestants the each year.) But here is my pyramid (no special ranking within tiers).

    Tier One (Vocalists – Want to HEAR Them Again)
    Pia Toscano, Stefano Langone, and Lauren Alaina

    Tier Two (Performers – Want to SEE Them Again)
    Scotty McCreery and James Durbin

    Tier Three (Hopefuls – Want Them to IMPROVE)
    Casey Abrams, Haley Reinhart, and Jacob Lusk

    Sorry – don’t care at all.
    Paul McDonald

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  14. Jeanne –

    Oh, I just took your point of view a little further. For once, you were more succinct than me! 😉

    😀 Thanks for the laugh! Your comment inspired a genuine chuckle from me. Oh so true. 😉 I’m getting better, but some of my most recent comments ran just as long as I ever.

    (Your comment to Louise is also hilarious! I especially love the three question marks. =P)

    I’m the same way as you: I remember Kelly Clarkson’s hometown because she’s my favorite singer, so I also know her birthday and countless trivial facts, but for almost everyone else, I pretty much forgot everyone’s hometown and home state. If you reminded me, I’d think, “Oh! That sounds familiar,” but if you asked me to recite the contestants’ hometowns from memory a few hours ago (before I checked!), I would’ve blanked out on most of them.

    And thank you so much for the congrats! 😀

    *

    Dearest Mindy,

    I think you nailed Scotty’s appeal, and as you said, generalizations about regional origins just don’t capture the full story. I especially agree with these points:

    That article made some generalizations without taking into account the respective fan bases, talent, music style, likeability and the many components that I believe make up each season’s Idol winner. […]

    I like to think that voice does matter to the voters who watch this show. They may not have the technical knowledge, but I believe that they can hear what sounds good and what does not.

    Your points about Scotty’s weaknesses are also valid, and I hope that Scotty grows in those aspects, but he seems to have plenty of fans as is and understandably so. He’s a refreshingly nice young man with a unique voice.

    Making predictions this early is difficult because in several past seasons, a dark horse came up from behind and ended up capturing the crown over the projected favorite, so I wouldn’t rule out the dark horses just yet.

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  15. By the way, I’m thinking that most of the dark horses are not from the South, but just wanted to clarify. 😉

    On a side note: any other Californians here? I feel like a minority on this site (even though California is the most populous state). It is true, however, that most Californians seem to think they’re too cool to watch American Idol. (I’ve heard that before; I don’t know if any of you have, but my real-life experience supports that impression. And I guess I’m allowed to say it because I am a Californian! =P)

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  16. Scotty and Lauren have a shot at winning. Paul…NO WAY!!

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  17. J – I’m a Midwestern transplant living in L.A. 🙂

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  18. Hmmm . . .

    IMO, the vocals of Robbie Rosen–plus his MAGNIFICENT stage presence–would have been WONDERFUL to have seen if he had been a finalist:) Also, his poresence may have encouraged the others to ‘up their game’.

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  19. Jeanne made me laugh when she said, “Louise, we share the same middle name, similar opinions, and now I learn we are both from the mid-Atlantic.

    Are we the same person???”

    Unfortunately I’m not someone who has dabbled in acting or singing–am I right about you doing that, Jeanne? But I remember the first time I read one of your posts, I thought, “she sounds like she could be someone I’d like to know.” It must be that mid-Atlantic thing!!!

    And Vonnie, I think I remember you saying something about Virginia Beach, so I’m a couple of states away from you.

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  20. When I worked at IBM my senior rep used to say “it’s Luck, Timing, and Ability – in that order”.

    I believe this is true with Idol. Example: Where will Naima and Thia’s votes go this week? If James were to go home – his voters would probably NOT go to Lauren… and If Paul went home his votes would probably NOT go to Scotty. That might not affect Lauren or Scotty right away – but it will drastically affect the order in which the others go home. And I believe the order in which the others go home will affect the final vote and determine the winner.

    Remember when no one thought David Cook could win, but as others left (Michael Johns, Brook, Jason, Carley) their votes did NOT go to little David – they went to David Cook. And last year I’m sure a lot more of Danny’s votes went to Kris than to Adam (due to musical styles, personal styles, etc.). If Allison had been the third going into the finale (instead of Danny) – things might have gone the other way. Or at least the spread would have been different.

    I think these huge blocks of suddenly ‘loose’ votes will unexpectedly render our “oh I’m sure they’re safe” people unsafe. Not because our “I’m sure they’re safe” contestants will lose voters – but because other contestants who receive ‘loose’ votes from the recently departed will be “shored up” and fortified.

    I’m predicting Naima’s votes will got to Paul (unique/stylized/more mature), but I have no idea where Thia’s votes will go (who do you think is voting for Thia?)

    What do you think? Does this make any sense?

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  21. Dearest J,

    I just had to come back to tell you that I am a transplanted Californian, originally from New York!

    See, there are a few of us here!

    ladyhelix,

    You touched on one important aspect of this competition – who will voters transfer their loyalties to if their favorite is voted off, or will they even continue to vote or just opt out? There is really no sure way to quantify this surge to another contestant. However, I do think that it is another factor in who ends up winning.

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  22. Yikes….I just got a headache reading through all these comments. Today I asked my friend Judy, a.k.a. Mrs. Know It All, what she thought about Idol. She said she thinks that James has only scratched the surface of what he’s capable of and that he will win. I’m sort of with ladyhelix with the luck, timing and ability theory. I still think it could be
    any of them with the exception of Paul. I’ve mentioned here that I am a Casey fan and I
    sure hope he learned a lesson last week. I especially hope that he starts dragging out any one of the six or so instruments he plays and uses them wisely. Only other thing I can think to say is SONG SELECTION, SONG SELECTION, SONG SELECTION.

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  23. Ladyhelix brought up an important factor about the “loose” votes after people are voted off. I don’t think about this because I don’t vote every week, but instead only for those I really like a lot. She raised the question about who Thia’s voters will transfer their loyalty too–I’m guessing it could be Pia or perhaps Stefano.

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  24. ladyhelix — what a terrific point, and one I’ve thought about in theory on other occasions, but not in relation to this season, right now. Where will they go? Well, I’m so down on Paul that while I think he may pick up some of Naima’s votes, I don’t think he’ll get them all. Those who want entertainment value may go to James, but I think Casey is apt to pick up some, too. However, maybe we get surprised and Haley gets them!

    As for Thia, I am inclined to think those fans who are teens voting for one of their own could switch to Scotty or Lauren, but she is such a different type (and definitely not country) that perhaps they won’t pick up much from the teens. Most of her fans are probably in it for the purity of the voice, so Louise probably has it right when she says Pia or Stefano.

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  25. Vonnie, I actually live in the Caribbean now, but I came down here from New Jersey, and my sensibilities will always remain rooted in the mid-Atlantic.

    I know you’ve mentioned Virginia Beach before, but I can’t believe that only dial-up is available there, it’s so flat. Are you in the hillier part of the state, out west?

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  26. Jeanne and Louise,

    Jeanne, you are on your game!!! Yes! I’m from the hills of VA…they would have to pipe wireless in to me in order for me to get high speed internet!

    Wow, Jeanne the Caribbean! Awesome!

    Here is the motto of where I live:

    Good Old VIRGINIA Born & Proud – Where the Tea is Sweet & Accents are Sweeter, Summer Starts in April, Front Porches are Wide & Words are Long, Macaroni & Cheese is a Vegetable, Y’all is a Proper Pronoun, Chicken is Fried, & Biscuits Come with Gravy, Everything is Honey & Someone is Always Getting Their Heart Blessed

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  27. Well, you’re as Southern as they make them, if that’s where you live, Vonnie! I’m touched you’re willing to speak to Northerners like Louise and me. And Louise, right back at ya!

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  28. Julia, your pyramid tiering is spot on.

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  29. I agree, Julia.

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  30. To All,

    I’ve come to bid you all fare-well…It is SENIOR YEAR at Vonnie’s house; so you know what that means; no time for anything! This is a fun and amazing time in our household, as we fill out Scholarship applications, college applications, and planning graduation picnics…yada yada, the list goes on!

    I’m also amazed as I watch my all grown up son make life choices for himself, wow! How time flies!

    It has been great fun chatting with each one of you, I may pop back in once-in-a-while, as time allows!

    I will try and join you all for the finale!

    Blessings to each of you!

    Vonnie

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  31. Watch out for Hailey. She has that IT factor and is so comfortable in her own skin, can do things with her voice that I have not heard before and doesn’t back off from the difficult. She gets my vote at this point

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  32. Vonnie – what an exciting time for you. I remember those days with my daughters and I treasure these memories so much.

    Thank you for your enormous contribution to the MCL community. We will miss you but hope you come back real soon and share your thoughts and opinions.

    God Bless
    MCL

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  33. Vonnie – good luck with everything. I have enjoyed reading your comments! Come back soon! 🙂

    I’ve been a little MIA myself…it’s been an insanely busy time on this end too. Things are slowly starting to quiet down though. PHEW!

    SCOTTY!! MCL, if this is indeed accurate, you just made me a very happy person! 🙂 Love Scotty…but that’s probably because I’m a huge country fan! I’m okay with this final three, although prefer to see Stefano instead of Paul.

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  34. I’ll miss you and your sense of humor, Vonnie!

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  35. Vonnie,

    You will be missed very much here! In fact, I can’t quite imagine this place without you. However, there are some wonderful people here who make it a special pleasure to be in their company.

    I took a long hiatus and didn’t know if I would be back for this season of Idol. I am really happy that I came back!

    Take care and enjoy this special time in your life!

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  36. Vonnie,

    Say it ain’t so! I’ve been down the road you’re on twice and it does take a lot of effort, but I really hate to see you go. Go proudly knowing that you have the coveted Horseshoe award, and I hope you won’t stay away too long.

    Tell your son that I said to keep plugging at that harmonica and it will come to him before too long. The very best to your family as you face these new challenges and opportunities.

    I will miss you Vonnie.

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  37. Vonnie,

    Enjoy you time with your family, and cngratulations to your son! I’ll certainly miss chatting with you, but once I catch up with you later on in the year, we’ll have lots to discuss about the finale!! Also, thanks for reminding me to make more time for my family. I’ve vowed to call my family out of state at least once every other week.
    Have a wonderful summer Vonnie!!!!

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  38. Vonnie, We’ll all miss you, but this is an exciting time of your life! Make the most of it, enjoy watching AI if you get the chance, send that young son of yours off into the world, and check back in here whenever it feels right to you. Bizzee247 will take care of Scotty for you, don’t worry. All the best, you sweet thing!

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  39. Just for the record, I am blessed with the sweetest and kindest readers in the world. Love how you are all showing Vonnie your love and support! Good night, all!

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  40. Vonnie – I agree with Gene. Say it ain’t so! I’ve enjoying chatting with you here, and I hope that you’ll stop by occasionally to join in the fun and to keep us updated on your son’s exciting plans. And, there will be more AI seasons to enjoy once he’s off to college. 🙂

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  41. Awe…thanks Jeanne (is there a smiley for a blushing smiley?)! ….. 😀 (I guess that will suffice!) you guys are too kind!

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  42. Best wishes to you, Vonnie, but I hope you will come back now & then & share your viewpoint.

    Regarding who may or may not win: I am just going to offer my opinion. Up until this past week, I did not feel anything from Haley, in fact I was annoyed by what I perceived as deliberate vocal tricks/attempts at pyrotechnics. But I was blown away by “Bennie & the Jets”. I agreed with the judges that it was the best performance of the night. She may not have the best voice among the contestants – that honor probably goes to either Pia or Scotty, putting aside his technical issues for the moment – but if Haley puts together another great performance this week I am probably going to vote exclusively for her. Not that the competition is going to be swayed by who I vote for LOL – but I will believe that I am voting for the right person.

    On a bit of a peeved note, I just paid $1.29 on iTunes for what I believed would be the video of “Bennie & the Jets” & it turned out to be the audio track only. Bummer. Guess the videos come later.

    Hope everyone is having a great day.

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  43. Addendum: regarding discussion of where votes go when people are voted off, I was someone who was in fact voting for both Naima & Thia. I liked them both. So now I may be voting for Haley, someone outside the “top tier”.

    And also for the record, I am a NJ native who has lived in Charleston, SC for 23 years and in Virginia for the 7 years prior to that. But I will always be a Jersey Girl at heart. And Snooki is not from NJ & she never will be. She’s a wannabe.

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  44. I can’t see both Lauren and Scotty getting to the finals because they both sing country music. I would think that they would cancel each other out and split the votes from country fans. I started thinking about that after ladyhelix brought up this phenomenon of fans going for other contestants after their favorite has been voted off.

    This is where I think the “y” chromosome really comes into play. I also think that Scotty has the better personality and more likeability. He and Lauren are the same age, I think, but Scotty just has this charm and aw-shucks thing going on that is irresistible.

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  45. Darlene, are you really! (I have a NJ native friend who also lives in Charleston, by coincidence.) It’s funny how you just can’t get the Jersey out of you. I’m not one who takes part of my identity from groups with which I might have some common interests, but when I hear some Springsteen or Bon Jovi, a wave of Jersey-itis washes over me that quite surprises me by its intensity . . .

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  46. Very good point, Mindy!

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  47. Darlene,

    I was interested to read your latest comments, given that you have said we like the same people too much for it to be chance!

    I had very mixed feelings about Haley’s performance last week. There is no question that she has a very good voice. However, her stylistic affectations and weird arm movements are beyond distracting. I didn’t like the emphasis on the extended “s” sound at the end of Jets. Some had a different take on it. For me it just didn’t feel real.

    I have been reading comments on the blogosphere about Haley and have this sense that it’s either you love her or can’t stand her kind of thing. The opinions on that performance seemed to vary a good deal. I like what Michael Slezak said in his latest video comments about some of the performances. He really likes Haley’s vocals, but thought her arm movements and body contortions totally detracted from the overall performance. That’s pretty much where I am at. I don’t think she needs to work that hard. Let the vocals take center stage and lose the crazy movements all over the place.

    I think she could be kind of a dark horse here. I am not sure. I originally thought that Stefano had dark horse potential, but now I don’t know. I think Pia has the best pure voice in this competition. Scotty has the most amazing voice with that gorgeous bass/baritone, but is lacking the vocal technical skills needed to maximize it to full potential.

    I liked Thia, but simply thought that she should have waited at least a year. I saw a video clip in which she said that her intention was to try out next year, but when she heard that they lowered the age then she changed her mind. Thia was quite interesting and offbeat, but in the end maybe she was a little too different for America.

    James needs to dial it back this week, just sit on a stool or stand and sing, please! His vocals have taken a back seat to the piano on fire, running around the stage and into the audience and being too manic. People have criticized Jacob oversinging and rightly so, but James is maybe overperforming.

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  48. Jeanne, I am definite victim of episodic Jersey-itis. Springsteen does it for me; I’m not as big a bon Jovi fan.

    Hi Mindy. I appreciate your observations about Haley. I agree that she has some bothersome mannerisms. I honestly thought they were less evident this past week. And the “s” issue didn’t bother me as much because it’s how Elton did it (well maybe not quite so much “s” but an extended “s” nonetheless).

    What’s interesting to me is that, at this point, none of these folks are clear standouts. They all have strengths & they also have weaknesses. I agree that James needs to tone it down. The acrobatics detract from his singing voice, which I personally think is very good. Adam was very very good at “mixing it up” – one week of very strenuous performing (“Born to be Wild” “Whole Lotta Love”) followed by a very quiet week (“Tracks of My Tears”).

    Scotty does not have to worry about winning or not winning. In fact, in my opinion, he would be better off not winning. He will walk out of American Idol & there will be people from Nashville with their pens poised, waiting for him to sign. Lauren, on the other hand, would be helped very much by placing highly in the competition.

    I have a similar issue with Pia regarding her performance style that you do with Haley. Pia does not know what to do with her arms. And most of the time she stands in one spot & wiggles a little. I think it’s the 6-inch heels.

    OK, that’s enough from me for now. Work is calling. Tonight should be interesting. It’s nice talking with you, Mindy.

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  49. I think Lauren is going to win. She hasnt been in the bottom 3 yet. She’s really good and young. then again there are mostly teen girls voting so they would probably vote for a “Cute” guy. Either way Lauren will go far even if she doesnt win 🙂

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