Vocal Masterclass Discussion For American Idol Season 10 Top 5 Results Show: Now And Then


Well, in a few hours we will be left with the Top 4 singers from Season 10 of American Idol. Who will they be? Who will be eliminated?

Personally, I feel Hayley or Jacob will be leaving us tonight. They have flirted with the Bottom three so many times that I have lost count.

But, one never knows, does one?

Scheduled to appear tonight is American Idol judge, the beautiful and talented Jennifer Lopez.

It should be an entertaining show – and stressful at the same time.

Who is leaving us tonight Idol fans? Anyone out there have a scoop or two? Please share!

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

75 Responses to “Vocal Masterclass Discussion For American Idol Season 10 Top 5 Results Show: Now And Then”

  1. I think it will be Haley. jacob always seems to get saved at the last minute every week and the others have very strong fan bases. I also think the others have stronger voices. It’s JMO. I don’t like Haley’s vocal tone. She also sounds like of screechy and flat to me.


  2. I think the right person left tonight. Jacob has a beautiful voice and will be missed.

    But, my heart went out to Lauren. This girl simply cannot handle the pressure. It’s heartbreaking to watch and I just want all this stress alleviated from her life. Why are these kids pushed so soon?


  3. I agree that the right person left. It was also a surprise to me that Lauren was in the bottom two. But from every on-line poll that I’ve seen, she always seems to be near the bottom.

    Personally, I was very, very happy to see Haley in the top three with James and Scotty. This amateur thinks that’s the correct top three.


  4. Jacob sang wonderfully tonight!! I laughed and laughed about his crazy runs at the end of the show. I think he did better last night than Jimmy gave him credit for. Lauren looked so scared tonight, and I just wanted to give her a hug. Rosanne, I do get the feeling that everyone has been putting too much pressure on her, and not giving Lauren adequate guidance that she so much needs. I think it’s been taking a toll on her.


  5. Anita, I think everyone associated with Idol had high expectations for her and it has not worked out as planned. She is far too nervous and has a very fragile spirit. We shall see what next week holds.


  6. I don’t think the pressure got the best of her in Lauren’s performances this week. She did a fantastic job with both songs, so I’m hoping for the same next week. She always seems sort of nervous and uneasy after she sings each week.


  7. I wish Jacob all the best! I know it was tacky what he said the week he performed
    Michael Jackson, “Man In The Mirror”, but I’ve gotten past that. I think he’s a very decent person. My hope is he finds a group of people who will help him to grow into an incredible artist. He’s got an amazing instrument, and I wish to God people would stop it with their nasty comments about him. I wonder if that kind of pressure was part of what got the best of him. I guess it’s just that I start to care about these contestants, and admire them for having the courage to sing in front of millions. People find it so easy to be unkind and judgemental, that it’s hard for me to get through a season!!


  8. I think it was time for Jacob to go tonight. I think he handled himself very well with some of the disrespect from Jimmy and the judges. He was pretty much told every week that this might be his last. I had issues with his singing, but not him. He showed a lot of class. I think a top five finish is great for him. I think that Jacob has a great voice, but needs to learn how to use it properly. I wish him luck with his career.

    America did get the top three right with Scotty, James and Haley. Poor Lauren! I was not surprised to see her break down in tears when she was in the bottom. I don’t think it was all that surprising, when you think about the fact that she and Scotty are competing for votes from the same country fan base. Something had to give and I think the votes are breaking more in Scotty’s favor.

    Haley has come on strong in the last few weeks and that has changed the dynamic of the competition. She has the confidence, poise and stage presence that Lauren is lacking.

    Did everyone see Lauren run to Scotty’s arms when she was declared safe? She buried her head in his arms and he put a comforting arm around her. I guess they are like brother and sister, as Scotty said. So cute. I will say it out loud now – Scotty is my favorite and I am voting for him! I think he has been my favorite for a while now, but I just couldn’t acknowledge that, for the very first time, my favorite is a country singer! This young man with the quiet composure and confidence and that gorgeous baritone, has totally captured my heart. If there was any doubt, last week sealed it when he brought me to tears with his performance of “You’ve Got a Friend”.

    All in all, I think we have four very talented and worthy contestants and the next few weeks should be great!


  9. Hang onto your hats, folks! MJ’s blog has revealed the theme for next week as songs by Leiber and Stoller. We are going WAY back in time! These songs were written in the 50’s, many for Elvis. Someone was nice enough to post a list of their songs in the comments section of the blog. I am copying and pasting it here. It’s long! Gosh, these are old!

    MCL, if you want to repost this somewhere else, they are all yours!

    ALONG CAME JONES The Coasters* (1959)
    –Ray Stevens (1969)
    BAZOOM (I NEED YOUR LOVIN’) The Cheers* (1954)
    –Otis Williams & The Charms (1955)
    THE BEST THING (Leiber, Stoller, Dino, Sembello) Billy Eckstine (1976)
    –Vaughn Monroe (1955)
    BOSSA NOVA BABY Elvis Presley (1963)
    CHARLIE BROWN The Coasters* (1959)
    –The Compton Brothers (1970)
    D. W. WASHBURN The Monkees (1968)
    DANCE WITH ME (Leiber, Stoller, Lebish, Treadwell, Nahan) The Drifters* (1959)
    –Rick James (as part of medley) (1989)
    DANCIN’ Perry Como (1957)
    DDO YOUR OWN THING Brook Benton* (1968)
    DON’T Elvis Presley (1958)
    –Sandy Posey (1973)
    DOWN HOME GIRL (Leiber, Butler) Old Crow Medicine Show (2006)
    DOWN IN MEXICO The Coasters* (1956)
    DRIP DROP The Drifters* (1958)
    –Dion (1963)
    FOOLS FALL IN LOVE The Drifters* (1957)
    –Jacky Ward (1977)
    FRAMED The Robins* (1954)
    GET HIM (Leiber, Stoller, Russell, Passman) The Exciters (1963)
    GIRL WHO LOVED THE MAN WHO ROBBED THE BANK AT SANTA FE (AND GOT AWAY), THE (Leiber, Stoller, Wheeler) Hank Snow (1963)
    GIRLS, GIRLS, GIRLS The Coasters* (1961)
    –The Fourmost (UK) (1965)
    HARD TIMES Charles Brown (1951)
    HIS KISS (Stoller, Russell) Betty Harris (1964)
    HOUND DOG Wille Mae “Big Mama” Thornton* (1953)
    –Elvis Presley (1956)
    I (WHO HAVE NOTHING) (Mogol, Donida, Leiber, Stoller) Ben E. King* (1963)
    –Terry Knight & The Pack (1967)
    –Tom Jones (1970)
    –Liquid Smoke (1970)
    –Sylvester (1979)
    I KEEP FORGETTIN’ Chuck Jackson* (1962)
    I KEEP FORGETTIN’ (EVERY TIME YOU’RE NEAR) Michael McDonald (1982)
    I WANT TO DO MORE Ruth Brown (1955)
    I’LL BE THERE (Leiber, Stoller, King, Jones) Damita Jo (1961)
    I’M A HOG FOR YOU (BABY) The Coasters* (1959)
    I’M A WOMAN Peggy Lee (1962)
    –Maria Muldaur (1975)
    –Jeanne Pruett (1978)
    IDOL WITH THE GOLDEN HEAD The Coasters* (1957)
    IS THAT ALL THERE IS? Peggy Lee* (1969)
    JACK-O-DIAMONDS Ruth Brown* (1959)
    JACKSON (Leiber, Wheeler) Johnny Cash & June Carter (1967)
    –Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood (1967)
    JAILHOUSE ROCK Elvis Presley (1957)
    JUST TELL HER JIM SAID HELLO Elvis Presley (1962)
    KANSAS CITY Wilbert Harrison (1959)
    –Rocky Olson (1959)
    –Hank Ballard (1959)
    –Little Richard (1959)
    –Trini Lopez (1964)
    –James Brown (1967)
    KING CREOLE Elvis Presley (UK) (1958)
    LITTLE EGYPT The Coasters* (1961)
    LORELEI Lonnie Donegan (UK)* (1960)
    LOVE ME Elvis Presley (1956)
    LOVE POTION #9 The Clovers* (1959)
    –The Searchers (1965)
    –The Coasters* (1971)
    LOVING YOU Elvis Presley (1957)
    LUCKY LIPS Ruth Brown* (1957)
    –Gale Storm (1957)
    –Cliff Richard (1963)
    MY CLAIRE DE LUNE Steve Lawrence (1961)
    ON BROADWAY (Leiber, Stoller, Mann, Weil) The Drifters* (1963)
    –George Benson (1978)
    ONE KISS LED TO ANOTHER The Coasters* (1956)
    ONLY IN AMERICA (Leiber, Stoller, Mann, Weil) Jay & The Americans* (1963)
    PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE (Leiber, Butler, Morton) The Shangri-Las (1966)
    PEARL’S A SINGER (Leiber, Stoller, Dino, Sembello) Elkie Brooks (UK)* (1977)
    POISON IVY The Coasters* (1959)
    –Young & Restless (1990)
    RAT RACE (Leiber, Stoller, McCoy) The Drifters* (1963)
    REVEREND MR. BLACK, THE (Leiber, Stoller, Wheeler) The Kingston Trio (1963)
    –Johnny Cash (1982)
    RUBY BABY The Drifters (1955)
    –Dion (1963)
    –Billy “Crash” Craddock (1975)
    RUN RED RUN The Coasters* (1959)
    SANTA CLAUS IS BACK IN TOWN Elvis Presley (UK) (1957)
    SAVED LaVern Baker* (1961)
    SEARCHIN’ The Coasters* (1957)
    –Jack Eubanks (1961)
    –Ace Cannon (1964)
    SHAKE ’EM UP AND LET ’EM ROLL Earl Richard (1968)
    –George Kent (1976)
    SHE’S NOT YOU (Leiber, Stoller, Pomus) Elvis Presley (1962)
    SHOPPIN’ FOR CLOTHES (Leiber, Stoller, Harris) The Coasters* (1960)
    SMOKEY JOE’S CAFE The Robins* (1955)
    SOME OTHER GUY (Leiber, Stoller, Barrett) The Big Three (UK) (1963)
    SPANISH HARLEM (Leiber, Spector) Ben E. King* (1960)
    –King Curtis (1966)
    –Aretha Franklin (1971)
    STAND BY ME (Leiber, Stoller, King) Ben E. King* (1961, 1986)
    –Earl Grant (1965)
    –Spyder Turner (1967)
    –David & Jimmy Ruffin (1970)
    –John Lennon (1975)
    –Mickey Gilley (1980)
    –Maurice White (1985)
    –4 The Cause (1998)
    THERE GOES MY BABY (Leiber, Stoller, Nelson, Patterson, Treadwell) The Drifters* (1959)
    –Donna Summer (1984)
    TREAT ME NICE Elvis Presley (1957)
    TROUBLE Gillan (UK) (1980)
    TURTLE DOVIN’ The Coasters (1955)
    WHAT ABOUT US The Coasters* (1959)
    WHAT TO DO WITH LAURIE (Leiber, Stoller, Wheeler) Mike Clifford (1962)
    YAKETY YAK The Coasters* (1958)
    –Eric Weissberg & Deliverance (1975)
    YOUNG BLOOD (Leiber, Stoller, Pomus) The Coasters* (1957)
    –Bad Company (1976)
    –Bruce Willis (1987)
    (YOU’RE SO SQUARE) BABY, I DON’T CARE Elvis Presley (1958)
    –Joni Mitchell (1982)
    YOU’RE THE BOSS LaVern Baker & Jimmy Ricks* (1961)


  10. Wow – Right up Scotty’s alley – Elvis and Josh Turner…

    The ladies get to take on Peggy Lee with ‘Is That All There Is?’ and compete with Melinda Doolittle’s ‘I’M A WOMAN’

    … My gut response is … do not try to compete with these two giants, but we may be pleasantly surprised.

    Everyone knows I am a JamesFan; however, at this point, I just want a good show and view into what the AI10 Tour might be like and I wish all four well.


  11. Predictions from the Peanut Gallery:
    Admittedly, I have no crystal ball or inside knowledge, but here is a lineup:
    #1 — Scotty — It is yours to lose now!
    #2 — Haley — Haley seems to be getting better all the time and may be peaking at the RIGHT time.
    #3 — James — My favorite — leaves at the Melinda Dolittle spot.
    #4 —Lauren — May be happier (and perhaps will get a chance to shine) on the tour – Casey James and Aaron Kelly stole the show I attended last year.


  12. It really was time for Jacob to go home. Being in the TOP 5 allowed him to go to Disney World and make thate xtra money. I think he should take some vocal training and dance lessons. With that booming voice, he is bound to end up on Broadway. He has high energy and a good voice. I don’t know if anyone will buy his CD.

    With Lady Gaga as co-mentor, this will be an interesting week! There’s plenty there for the TOP 4 to choose from. Everyone is betting on Scotty doing another Elvis Presley song. Why not James?

    I cannot imagine a Final without James. He has come so far. He had a bit of an off week, but I expect him to bounce back! He has been such a terrific role model and there are a lot of children rooting for him!

    I think Idol would like a Girl-Boy Final. Song selection will be everything! TOP 3 and the home visit is so important!

    Julia, I thought Siobhan Magnus stole the show, but I was definitely impressed with Casey James (on the tour). Crystal did a nice job, too.

    I am just wondering how Lady Gaga will handle Lauren and Scotty?


  13. Grammie Kari,

    Well, I believe if Jacob receives some great vocal training and direction that he really could have a successful career in the music industry. There are alot of people who love R&B. I might even buy his album. I really hope he goes this route instead of Broadway!


  14. Grammie Kari –

    I wished that I had seen the show you saw! We had the nastiest heat wave the week of the tour and everyone (including the audience) was exhausted. After over a year, Siobhan is still one idol contestant that I wish to see more of in the future.

    From what I have read about La Gaga, she is a SAVVY Lady and may be able to add some intelligent and useful advice.


  15. Rosanne,

    How are you today? I’m feeling very emotional this morning for some reason. I just feel so bad for Jacob. There’s been so many unkind, and nasty things said about him on other sites, and it just breaks my heart. He seemed to work so hard week after week, and you could tell how much passion he had for what he was doing. Jacob certainly didn’t do a bad job this season! He’s really had a number of shining moments. I’m sorry, but I wish some of those on this site would have given Jacob some credit as well!! Maybe I just get too emotionally attatched to A.I.


  16. Anita – I liked Jacob, too — he is someone that tried to push the envelope and I looked forward to seeing him each week.

    I also do not like the ridiculous comments I see on some sites but I try to do what my grandmother always told me and consider the source — when an individual spouts that bile, it shows that they are diseased in some way.

    I just wished that Jacob had toned it down a bit and used what to my “untrained” ears sounded pure and gorgeous under all the embellishments. Sometimes less is more.

    I am looking forward to seeing and hearing him at the concert this summer.


  17. Julia,

    Thanks so much. I appreciate that!! I know he could get to over the top at times, but he really did have some awesome performances this season, and I’m proud of him, and believe we’ll see him even stronger during that Idols Live Tour.


  18. Anita – I understand how you are feeling. It always hurts to see someone as talented as Jacob leave the competition.

    Unfortunately, though, he wasn’t an overwhelming favorite of many readers here and on other sites. And, because of this, the longer he stayed, the more frustrating it was for the viewers to embrace him, simply because one of their favorites left before him.

    However, it simply doesn’t justify some of the negative verbal comments against him. It is exhausting, pointless and downright cruel. What’s done is done.


  19. Mindy,
    Thanks for posting the list. Will they only sing one song, or if it’s two, will they both be this theme?

    There are a few nuggets on the list, but you have to dig through a pile of novelty songs to get to them. James is the easiest to find material for, followed by Scotty because the vast majority of the songs are written from the male perspective and many can’t be changed. Haley took a little digging but there are a few that would be interesting for her. Lauren was a real challenge.

    Haley –

    “I’m a Woman”
    I can see her doing it in the Maria Muldair style Or

    “Hound Dog” Big Mama Thorton
    I listened to her playing harmonica (She was good)and also singing this very song yesterday. I love Big Mama. or

    “I Wanna do More” Ruth Brown
    This song is right on the edge of the line between rockabilly and jazz and even though the lyric content is lacking it could give Haley an opportunity to show her chops. Check it out in the hands of a French R&B band, of all things.

    Scotty –
    “I Keep Forgetin” Michael McDonald or

    “Ruby Baby” Dion

    James –

    “There Goes My Baby” The Jay and the Americans version sounds remarkably like James or

    “Young Blood” Bad Company or

    “Smokey Joe’s Cafe” Buddy Holly or

    Lauren –

    “You’re so Square” Elvis

    It’ll be really gonesville in a country sort of way. Or

    I (Who Have Nothing) be careful, you are taking on the best of Jordin Sparks with this one.


  20. Rosanne,

    Jacob wasn’t one of my favorites, but I admired him, and really did love some of his performances. I’ll miss him. I hope he’ll come across people who want to be encouraging to him, and not disheartening. I guess I just have a gentle, kind heart about myself.


  21. MCL,

    I seldom read the other blogs except Slezak, and I only read his column after it is a week or so old, so I’m out of touch. What is being said about Jacob? I haven’t seen anything offensive about him here.


  22. Gene – I have no idea. I really don’t lurk on many blogs, but I can only imagine.


  23. I am not sorry to see Jacob go, I never liked any of his performances. Although I can see he has a potentially great voice, and I do like his tone, I just couldn’t enjoy the singing.

    Not surprised Lauren was in the bottom 2, I suspected that she was last week. Given that the others had been in the bottom 3 several times previously – what was gained by not telling us the result this time – except trying to protect her. So far we only have Scotty and probably James who have not been in the bottom. Like many others I believe that Lauren has a great voice but not yet the maturity for this competition.

    Currently prediction (and hope) is for final 3 of Haley, James, Scotty


  24. Gene,

    I’m afraid to say what the nagative comments were and where I found them, for fear it will get back to them that I said something.


  25. Gene,

    Great to see you here! They will again be singing two songs and both from this theme. I was thinking of late last night when I posted this information.

    I am not sure that the list I posted is complete. Someone else on MJ’s blog posted a link to the Leiber and Stolle discography. So I don’t know that my list has the complete list of songs.

    It’s funny, but the ones you mentioned are the ones I listened to on youtube last night. We are on the same wavelength. It’s almost scary how you chose the same songs that I was going to post here. I got a kick out of listening to a lot of these songs, because I didn’t know some of the artists. Great stuff!

    I think it’s almost too obvious for Scotty to choose Elvis. He has done that already.

    I am so glad to see you here! 🙂


  26. Gene,

    First of all, I meant to say that I was thinking OF YOU late last night when I posted this information. I figured that this would be right up your alley!

    As far as the hatespeak being directed at Jacob, why would anyone even want to bring those comments here? I have read a lot of it on other sites, but I don’t see any point in repeating it. I will also say that there is hatespeak about the other contestants. No one is immune from this kind of thing. It’s not just Jacob. Many people felt that he should have left sooner, so they decided to spew out their frustration on various sites.

    This happened to David Archuleta. There were terrible things said about Adam Lambert, particularly related to his sexuality. It’s never okay when you read this kind of thing, however it is never just directed at one contestant.

    As far as possibly being more supportive of Jacob, all I can say is that I gave him many chances to win me over. I love r&b and am very supportive of anyone who can sing this genre of music. When Jacob did well, I made sure to point it out. When I felt that he fell short, I called him on it. However, I am okay with the fact that I never made it personal. That is the line that I don’t like to cross.

    I think it’s a good idea to look ahead and not back. Jacob has to move on with his career and hopefully he will have his success.


  27. Gene,

    I keep losing my posts now, because I have to remember to sign in before I write anything.

    You are a genius! “There Goes My Baby” by Jay and the Americans would be great for James. I didn’t even know they sang it. I only remember the Drifters. I am listening to that clip of “I Want to Do more”. I was checking out Ruth Brown. I have never heard of many of these artists. So this is what rockabilly and jazz sounds like? Great stuff!

    I knew that you would know these songs better than I do. I listened to “Smokey Joe’s Cafe” by Buddy Holly last night. I never knew that he did this song. I am having a ball listening to these songs.

    This is fun!


  28. Gene,

    Check out this version of “Stand By Me” by Mickey Gilley. I got this from someone who posted it on MJ’s blog. I think it would be perfect for Scotty!



  29. This is a better link to Mickey Gilley’s version of “Stand By Me”.

    Scotty, you have to sing this!


  30. MCL, Anita and Mindy,
    Regarding Jacob. I should have chosen my words more carefully. I didn’t want anyone to repeat anything hateful about him but I had no idea what they might be saying. I think Mindy’s post has made it clear enough what the nature of the remarks were.

    Sometimes fans become so hyper sensitive that they don’t allow others the normal option of just not liking an artist’s music or not liking them for whatever reason. So my question was more about whether people were really saying something out of line about Jacob or if they just didn’t care for him as an artist.

    There is certainly no need for anyone to impugn his character. He’s seems like a decent and likable young man, if a bit of an unusual fellow. A lot of people have made a good living at being unusual though, from bob Dylan to Willie Nelson, Elton John or Lady Gaga to name a few. It’s just a matter of selling the public on your brand of different as well as your talent.

    Jacob was able to sell himself to more people than I would have thought he might. Top five is a very respectable finish for someone out of the mainstream of today’s music. He never made the sell to me as a R&B singer but if he keeps working at it, he might one day. I always found him interesting and kept hoping that the next time I heard him he would have it all together, which is not unlike the way I viewed Haley in the beginning. She kept working at it until she made the sale. I think he will find his niche if he keeps working at it.

    Thanks for the replys.


  31. Mindy,

    I guess it’s just hard for me being in the minority of a site I love so much when it comes to Jacob. I got tired of some saying week after week that they want Jacob gone, instead of saying anything positive about him. I found comments about him were pretty harsh on another site though. Please don’t be afraid to talk to me. I really do love talking with you on this site, Mindy.


  32. Anita,

    Rather than chasing words around in circles (those pesky things never come when I call for them! =P), I thought I’d send you this instead:

    *HUGS* 😀


  33. @Anita and Gene,

    I didn’t think that anyone was really advocating repeating the hatespeak about Jacob. I just don’t think it’s worth even dignifying some of the trash talk about him. I have the realization that I don’t know these contestants as people. I have never met them and don’t know their personality.

    I know that many never let Jacob off the hook for his unfortunate comment about America not being able to look itself in the mirror. Everyone says things that they shouldn’t and I let it go. Some were unable to do it and just beat it to death.

    It is hard to be in the minority. I will never forget my experience being the lone fan of David Archuleta on a forum filled with David Cook fans. I think that I shared that experience here in a previous post a few weeks ago. I tried to block out the horrific and despicable attacks on this fine young man. Ultimately, I became a target for the attacks as the lone supporter of David A. I left that forum and have never gone back.

    Anita, I do know how you feel. I hope that I did not come across as unsympathetic. I just didn’t want you to even have to repeat some of the terrible things said about Jacob. I hope that you can be happy that he proved the doubters wrong and stayed in it to top five. As Gene said, that is a great result for an r&b singer. Big Mike made top four, but he needed the save to get there.

    Jacob seemed totally okay last night. Did you see how he just kept on singing until the show went off the air? That was hilarious and so Jacob!

    I just hope you understand that, while I may not have been able to embrace Jacob as a singer, I had nothing against him personally. Gene put it so well. He just didn’t make the sale with me. He has his own unique personality and I think that many may have misunderstood him.

    I am pleased that I kept an open mind throughout this competition. Haley was the one who I didn’t like early on, as some may remember. However, again as Gene said, she did keep on working and improving and finally did win me over. Scotty is still my favorite, but I am very happy to see Haley in the top four.

    Anita, I am not afraid to talk to you. I love chatting with you. Maybe I didn’t do a good enough job of trying to cheer you up. It’s okay to feel bad for as long as you need to, but I hope that you will come to a place where you can appreciate what Jacob did accomplish. He did get the gig at Disney World, which will mean $50,000 and will get to go on tour. He had a lot of things working against him, but he kept it together and just went out there and gave it his all.

    Here is a little smiley face to cheer you up! 🙂


  34. Mindy,

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart! Yes, Jacob’s crazy runs at the end of the show were awesomely funny. I think he went out with a bang last night. He sang so wonderfully. I remember you telling me the attacks you endured being the only David A. fan on a certain site. Both being David A. fans is something we surely have in common. It was awesome for Jacob to make it all the way to the Top 5. I hope to go to the Idols Live Tour this summer. I bet he’ll give an incredible show, and perhaps you’ll like him Mindy. I believe with the pressure of A.I., off their shoulders, all the contestants might give great performances! I love you, Mindy!


    Thank you so much for your kindness. You are so sweet and thoughtful!!


  35. J,

    Thanks so much for the Pooh Bear and Friends hug!! Hee! Hee!


  36. Anita,

    I know that I’m one of the people you’re speaking about who has weekly said it was time for Jacob to leave. Maybe if he had been on a different season, I would have liked him, but this year there were others I liked much more and he stayed after some of my other favorites were voted off. Usually I love R&B music, gospel music, et., but I just couldn’t get into Jacob’s way of singing. From the very beginning I was turned off by his “over singing,” and even though he did tone it down a lot, I just never listened to him and loved his sound. I’m sorry if my comments about Jacob have bothered you, but we all have our likes and dislikes. I’m not a particular fan of Lauren either. I’m sure she’s a sweet girl, and I believe she’s extremely talented, but I just happen to like Haley, James, and Scotty more than I like Lauren. Personally, I’d like to see Lauren leave next week so that my three favorites could remain for another week.

    A couple of years ago, I was definitely in the minority on this site because I liked the sound of Danny Gokey’s voice. Although people here who were huge Adam fans were respectful, I read what people on other sites said about Danny. I just couldn’t see why they were so critical of him. It wasn’t that I didn’t agree that Adam was extremely talented, but I just happened to really like the sound of Danny’s voice. But I was a minority of one or two.

    As long as we’re not attacking the contestants personally, I always assumed it was okay to write about our likes and dislikes when it comes to the contestants’ performances and style. Some people here have written honestly about not appreciating Casey this year. I happened to like Casey a lot. I never thought that Casey would go further than fifth or maybe fourth place, but I enjoyed hearing him every week. As much as I liked Casey, I do think others are better.


  37. Mindy,
    That’s funny because I was thinking of you when I made some of those selections. (Insert Outer Limits sound here) I wondered which ones you would pick and you pushed me to make better choices.

    It’s a tough list to work from because there are so many novelty songs that, while it’s neat to hear them, they aren’t really that vehicle to carry someone to an Idol moment, and most of the songs on the list have male oriented lyrics.

    “Stand By Me” in a Mickey Gilley version would be good for Scotty. I noticed that Gaga, as well as Danny Gokey, have done that song also. That might increase the likelihood of Scotty doing it. Do you know who Mickey Gilley is? Since you are rapidly becoming a country music fan, you will need to know this. He is (was?) a country singer and a bar owner. The movie Urban Cowboy, that the video you linked came from, was shot largely at his bar. It may have been the place where mechanical bull riding for drunks became a sport. The building has over two acres under one roof. But his real claim to fame is the fact that The Reverend Jimmy Swagart and old Killer himself, Jerry Lee Lewis, are his first cousins. If you ever see any of the three of them play piano and sing you will notice they all share the same odd habit of using a straight mic stand placed on the floor between their legs. This position causes them to have to have to move their hands away from the keyboard to reach notes either side of middle C. This style is a trademark for Jerry Lee. I’ll bet that trio makes for lively family reunions! You can put that in your file of useless knowledge.

    I just got lucky on the Jay and the American’s version of “There Goes my Baby.” Like you, I only remembered the Drifters doing it. When I see a song in the list, I like to give it a spin to be sure there isn’t something about it that would make me change my mind about recommending it. When I looked up this song on You Tube, I happened to see the JATA version and decided to listen to it. To my surprise “Jay,” I guess, sounded remarkably like James. That really helps me get a feel for how it could sound if the contestant chose to do the song. Otherwise I have to use the little record player in your head.

    Buddy Holly’s “Smokey Joe’s Cafe” is an old favorite of mine, as is of course, Buddy Holley. I have that song on an album and my memory of it was that he recorded it in his apartment.

    “I Wanna Do More” is good stuff and Ruth Brown is pretty interesting. They were both new to me. Some of her stuff can be pretty racy.

    Now we have to figure out which TWO of these songs each one should sing.

    Sorry for the delay, but I left just after my last post and have just now returned.

    Oh yeah, did you see my last post to you in the previous thread regarding how to avoid loosing your post?


  38. Anita,
    I hope that nothing that I said hurt your feelings. None of it was directed at you. Like many others I have problems with Jacob’s singing and have said so but I never say anything about someone that I wouldn’t say to them. I have also acknowledged that he has a remarkable gift and wish him the best in making the most of it in the future. At this point I believe the other contestants are more on the right path to becoming marketable singers, even though each of them has flaws. Someone has to go each week and for my taste, this week was Jacob’s turn. I know you see it differently, and I’m perfectly ok with that.

    So far I have lost at least five singers that I was interested in since the Hollywood rounds. I know that we can become attached to these young people very quickly and it’s very disappointing when they don’t get to see their greatest dream realized. On the other hand, the rewards are substantial for those who make the top 10, or 11 this year, and most of the kids leave the show with the knowledge that they have received exposure and experience that money can’t buy. I think we take it harder than they do sometimes.

    Based on what we have seen so far, as well as my own biases, I thing Louise is correct about the next elimination and the top three. Anything can happen though.

    If I have hurt your feelings, please accept my apology and know that it was unintentional.


  39. Louise,

    Thanks. I’m just not usually one to say this one should go or that one should go on this site. When poeple keep stressing it more and more, it starts sounding disrespectful to me. I believe Jacob deserved to get as far as he did in the competition, and it bothered me that people wouldn’t give him any credit. Yes, he could get carried away, but for the most part, he’s done a fine job this season. Jacob’s got a stunning voice, but he just needs someone to work with him.

    During Season 8, Adam was my favorite, but I’ve also always loved Danny Gokey’s voice. His performance of “You Are So Beautiful” was so amazing!! I live 10 miles from Milwaukee, WI, where Danny is from, but couldn’t make it to his Homecoming. What were some of your favorite Danny performances?


  40. Louise,

    When Kris Allen won Season 8, I didn’t get upset at all about it. Yes, I did feel Adam deserved it more, but Kris certainly deserved it as well. Both he and Adam showed so much originality on the show. There was a video on You Tube of 2 women who got so angry Adam didn’t win, and one of them was even screaming at the top of her lungs. The other woman had nerve to tell Kris to shut up and walk off the stage, refusing the title. Boy, did that ever tick me off!! Why should Kris have been expected to do that! I felt so bad for him. I’m done getting caught up in the who should win, who shouldn’t win thing. Besides, the look on Adam’s face was priceless! He was so excited for Kris that night!!


  41. Gene,

    I will have to check out your post on the other thread. I think that I know what to do to avoid this, but I will read it just to make sure!

    Hang onto your hat, because I am going to make an announcement! Guess who is now a country fan!! None other than your cyber sister! Yes, it’s true, I can’t fight it any longer. Scotty had a good deal to do with it, but then there was the discovery of Josh Turner. What a voice! I realized that some of the great voices I am missing in popular music today are singing country! Who knew! Tell me that you haven’t fallen out of your chair over this admission from me! So much more for us to share.

    I loved your story about Mickey Gilley! Of course I remember the movie “Urban Cowboy”! I haven’t seen it in a long time and forgot that this song was played in that movie. I had no idea that Mickey related to Jimmy Swaggart and the killer, Jerry Lee Lewis! Oh, how I remember that business with the mic stand when Jerry Lee was playing. I never figured out what was up with that! I have always loved him so much, even with all the craziness in his life. There will never be anybody like him again. That was a great story!

    You know these songs much better than I do. I missed the 50’s, but have gone back and checked out so much of the music. I didn’t know Leiber and Stoller. I did find out about Big Mama Thornton a few years ago. On youtube it’s obvious that there are very few recordings available for these early songs. Some people put up videos with a 78 rpm record playing the song. That sounds hilarious! Then there are people who play their 45 rpm originals.

    I never heard Buddy Holly’s version of “Smokey Joe’s Cafe”. It sounded like an early recording in his home or something like that. Not like his later stuff. I learned about him long after his death. I remembered the Beatles always talking about him and the other early rock and roll artists like Elvis, Little Richard, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis all of the founders of rock and roll.

    I found some video of Ruth Brown on youtube. The quality isn’t great when you are able to get some of these early recordings, but at least I can get familiar with this music. Is this early rhythm and blues or is this part of rockabilly? I know Elvis was sort of country in the beginning. I love the history of music. I am not like the kids of today who are already complaining like crazy on MJ’s blog about this OLD music again! It’s funny to read them trying to figure out the songs and artists. I wish they could just assail their ears for one night and go with it. They might enjoy it.

    Someone on that site grew up during the 50’s and picked out Mickey Gilley’s “Stand By Me”. He also mentioned Dion’s “Ruby Baby”, in fact we posted almost at the same time. Did you know that there was a song done by a woman named Damita Jo called “I’ll Be There”? I found it on the link of the discography for Leiber and Stoller. When I heard it on youtube, I realized that it’s “Stand By Me” with different words. That was strange.

    I am having so much fun. Please feel free to recommend country artists, so that I can get better acquainted. Blame Scotty McCreery for finally getting me to cross over. I just adore him!


  42. “She’s gone country, look at them boots.”

    Good post Mindy; we’ll talk some more a little later when I get a chance.


  43. Gene W,

    Thank you for clearing that up. I don’t believe I’ve been out of line, or super-sensitive . I just think that whether someone likes a contestant or not, but have had some great performances, as Jacob has had, I say people should recognize that, instead of just saying they want him GONE, GONE, GONE all the time!

    I love to watch these contestants grow, and if they have an off week, and still get to come back the next week, I love seeing each one redeam himself and herself, whether I’m a fan of their’s or not. That is one of my favorite aspects of American Idol!!!


  44. MCL (or anyone) – just out of curiosity…is there a reason why my posts keep disappearing?


  45. Bizzee247,

    Did you remember to enter your name and E-mail address under “Leave a Reply” at the left of the screen? You need to do this before you submit each comment.


  46. Bizzee – it is late but I will check tomorrow. Do you mean you post them and and then they disappear sometime later? I hope WordPress is not having security issues again. They go to great precautions to avoid this.


  47. Rosanne,

    I’ve been thinking about you saying Jacob was the right person to leave Thursday night. I have enjoyed Lauren this season, but her performances aren’t near as memorable to me as Jacob’s. I think he’s had more standout performances than Lauren. As I mentioned on another post, “Dance With My Father” had such a huge effect on me. My father passed away at the age of 68 in Sept. 2008. The lyrics, music, and Jacob’s incredible vocals I don’t believe I’ll ever forget!! Like I said though, I do like Lauren, and appreciate her beautiful voice, and I wish her all the luck in the world!


  48. Anita- I would have been fine with Lauren leaving but knew it wasn’t going to happen. It will be interesting to see if she can pull herself together and stop the momentum that Haley is now enjoying.


  49. Rosanne,

    I’m hoping Lauren has an incredible performance Wednesday night. She really needs one. I want to see James in the Finale. Which ever one of the girls makes it to the Top 3, she’s going to have a HUGE hurdle to jump to beat Scotty there to the Finale, that’s for sure!! I believe Scotty has much bigger and dedicated fan base than either one of them. So, both Lauren and Haley need to be incredible, to even stand any chance.


  50. I’ve been a fan of Jacob’s this season, but have been so sheepish about admitting that on this site, because of how obvious it was to me that only an extreme few like him. It always seems to me that people get so turned off by R&B singers on
    American Idol season after season. I can’t really understand why. Frankly, I think I have great taste.


  51. Anita,

    For me, I’m not at all turned off by R&B singers. I love R&B and loved LaToya, LaKeisha, Melinda, George Huff, etc. I wanted to like Jacob, but week after week I just didn’t. I will give him credit for some decent performances, but there wasn’t one that I absolutely loved. I just liked some of the other contestants more than Jacob. My feelings had nothing to do with not liking R&B.


  52. Louise,

    Thanks. It just seems like on various sites that it’s the R&B singers get the most disliked. I know I can’t make any of you see and appreciate Jacob that way I have this season, and I certainly wouldn’t want to try. I hope in time that he will win some of you over. Also, thanks so much Louise for giving him some credit, and maybe someday his “Dance With My Father” will grow on you.


  53. Well I figured out what the problem was – I guess it would help if I was looking under the correct blog topic! It was a long day and very late when I found myself here last night. My apologies! 🙂 But thanks for looking into it and helping me out! Everyone is so kind here. 🙂


  54. My feelings are very similar to Louise’s thoughts. I loved Ruben Studdard, my teddy bear! That was the first season I watched Idol and he just completely won my heart. So many liked Clay Aiken and felt that he should have won in what was a photo finish that season. I didn’t care! I loved Ruben. He has not had the success that I felt sure he would have, but I will always love his silky smooth voice.

    Louise ran down pretty much everybody else. LaToya London was my favorite during Fantasia’s season. When she was voted off I was so upset that I promised never to watch the show again. That one still hurts all these years later. LaKeisha and Melinda were stars during Jordin’s season. Melinda was my favorite and again I was devastated to see her voted off at the number three spot, not even making it to the finale.

    I think a little piece of me kind of died with each of these people. I also loved Elliott Yamin and thought he had a nice r&b style. I always keep my eye out for each season’s r&b singer. That’s why it has been so disappointing when I could not respond to Jacob. He was among my select group of favorites at the beginning of the finals, but he just lost me along the way.

    Jacob did have a few really good performances that moved me. Overall though, his style of singing was heavily infused with a kind of histrionic gospel flavor which simply does not appeal to me. I loved Luther Vandross and his version of “Dance With My Father” was beautiful.

    I have talked at length about my earliest influence, my personal Idol for all time, the late great Sam Cooke. I was very young when I first heard him. If I hadn’t started listening to music when I was very young, about seven or eight, I would never have come to know and love him. When he was killed, I was beyond devastated. I adored him so completely and to have him taken away in such a violent way, was difficult to understand. I have never really gotten over his death and kept him alive by listening to his music over the decades of my life. In that way, I felt as though he was still alive. It was a tragedy beyond measure to lose this musical genius too soon, the man who helped invent soul music. He gave me the love of r&b that I still have to this day.


  55. Mindy,

    I didn’t realize Sam Cooke was killed violently. I’m going to do some reseach on him, and his music. Luther Vandross was such an incredible singer , and I’ll have to hear his version of “Dance With My Father”. Perhaps I’ve heard it before and don’t remember. Jacob certainly did his song justice, though!


  56. Hi Julia ~ With all the competition coming out of the various singing Reality Shows, I hope Siobhan will find success with her album to released in the Fall. She just doesn’t seem to be in a hurry!

    Gene, I really love “Stand By Me” but I can’t imagine anyone doing a better version than David Archuletta. That was my favorite song on the Season 7 tour. I also like “There Goes My Baby.” Mindy, I see you also agree with Gene! I am anxious to see what Lady Gaga will say, and will she favor Haley?

    I don’t mind being called Grammie Kari, Kari, or even Kariann! Mindy how did you get a smiley smile. Nothing seems to work for me with HTML.

    It will be a bust TV viewing tonight!


  57. I apologize everyone for saying people are turned off by R&B singers, and I respect your views on Jacob.


  58. Hi Kari,
    You make a good point about David and “Stand by Me” but on the other hand Haley sort of shattered that theory this year by doing “House of the Rising Sun” hot on the heels of Siobhan’s outstanding version, and not only getting by with it but getting redemption and a standing O from the judges. I think I like the new way of thinking on this. I love Siobhan and her version of House, but she doesn’t own it and there was room for Haley to do something good and different with it so it’s a win win. What do you think?

    You have another good point about Haley and Gaga. I have been thinking the same thing. When she said she would be doing a Gaga song last week I thought “OH NO, don’t do it darlin’, I’m beggin’ Ya;” but she did it anyway. As it turned out, I thought it was pretty good and much better than the judges gave her credit for. She took a beating for Gaga’s song and Jimmy’s advise and, as far as the delivery of the song went, she wasn’t at fault. I think both Jimmy and Gaga will make an effort to make it up to her. On the other hand, Haley’s own instincts seem to be better regarding song choice and arrangement so their efforts to help may end up hurting.

    I think this week will be about the girls. Both of them have incentive to make a better showing than last week and both fan groups should be energized, although Lauren’s group may be more energized due to her falling into the bottom two last week.


  59. Mindy,

    Thanks for mentioning Elliot Yamin as a R&B singer too. I LOVED Elliot!


  60. I just read an article about Jennifer Lopez’s appearance on a late-night talk show where she was asked who would win Idol this year. I really appreciate the fact that she didn’t pick anyone. Basically she said that she thinks all four of them can win. That is quite refreshing because I usually get quite annoyed with the judges who make predictions at this point in the competition.


  61. Anita,

    First, let me clarify what I said about “Dance with My Father”. When I read my post back, I realized that it sounded like I was praising Luther’s version in that one sentence. I was actually speaking about Jacob’s version, but it didn’t come across well because of the way I worded it. Of course, Luther’s version was brilliant. However, I do think that Jacob did a great rendition of this song. That is one of my favorite performances from Jacob.

    Grammie Keri,

    David Archuleta’s version of “Stand By Me” is one of my favorite performances. Just a beautiful interpretation of this great classic. However, if Scotty does the Mickey Gilley version, then he can make it his own. No one can sing it the way David A. did and improve on that.

    The issue that they face this week is that there are a lot of songs in the Leiber and Stoller catalogue that are not well known today. I don’t think that the contestants will risk doing an obscure song, especially after the feedback Haley got from doing the unreleased Lady Gaga song. They will want to do songs that are recognizable and there are enough of those from which they can choose.

    Someone has to do “Stand By Me”. It’s such a great song. For many years Ben E. King’s version was considered untouchable. However, what is great about a classic song with a great melody and lyrics, is that it can be reworked and made fresh and new. Look at what Scotty did with “You’ve Got a Friend”. That was amazing.


    This is for you. I listened to Big Mama Thornton’s version of “Hounddog” on youtube. It was suggested that Haley do her version of this song. Someone on mj’s blog posted a link to Big Mama Thornton’s version of it on youtube. WOW! That’s all I can say! It is such a shame that she was never given credit for doing this song. Everyone thought that Elvis was the first to do it. I actually like her version better.

    Another suggestion I am seeing on mj’s blog is Freddie Mercury’s version of “Jailhouse Rock” for James. That’s some big shoes to step into, but I think that James might be able to do a good job. Freddie’s version was much different that the original classic done by Elvis.

    There have been any number of versions of some of the greatest songs written by Leiber and Stoller. I think this could be a great night for these contestants, even with OLD songs!


  62. First, there is a song spoiler on MJ’s blog. Eonline has reported that James will be performing “Don’t Stop Believing”. This would not be part of the Leiber and Stoller theme, so maybe there is another theme and different songs. There is no other information at this time.


    I meant to tell you a bit more about Sam Cooke’s death. I spoke about it on a blog a few weeks back. He was shot by the manager of the Hacienda motel in Los Angeles. There is a lot of mystery surrounding his death even to this day. In 1964, we didn’t have the kind of 24/7 cable news and internet and scandals like this weren’t discussed. It was all kind of a blur at the time. I never understood any of it.

    The official police record says that Sam Cooke was killed by Bertha Franklin, manager of the motel after he supposedly attacked her. A coroner’s inquest ruled it justifiable homicide. He went to the motel with a woman named Elisa Boyer. She testified that he tried to rape her and she hurriedly put on her clothes and hid his clothes and ran out. Her story was filled with inconsistencies and varied from what other witnesses said. Also, Sam Cooke’s wallet which contained thousands of dollars, was never found. This woman was subsequently arrest for prostitution. There have been theories that she went with him intending to rob him. Sam Cooke only had his jacket and one shoe on when he supposedly confronted the manager, enraged because his clothes were gone and the woman had gone.

    Tests showed that Sam Cooke was inebriated at the time. The purpose of the inquest was to determine if Franklin was justified in killing Sam Cooke in fear for her life. The coroner’s jury accepted Franklin’s version of events, which was supported by Evelyn Carr, the owner of the motel who was on the phone with Franklin and heard the argument.

    There have been many conspiracy theories about what really happened, but the truth is that no one will ever know what happened. Sam Cooke’s family has always vigorously disputed any allegation that he would have tried to rape this woman and the version of events that the women involved gave.

    That’s why there wasn’t much said about Sam Cooke’s death. It was such a scandal at the time. I never really even knew what happened, just that some woman shot him in a motel. He had a history of being quite the womanizer and loved the ladies, but on this night he seemed to have gotten in with bad company. There has been speculation that the women conspired to rob him. The investigation by the police has come under serious question over the years.

    Over 200,000 fans mobbed the street to attend his funeral. He was a legend even before his death. He influenced me more than any other singer. He should not have died that night, that’s all I know.

    Sorry if I went on so long, but I just wanted to be as accurate about what I found out online. I stopped reading about it anymore, because it upset me too much. I just want to listen to his music and remember his greatness. There has never been anyone who has even come close to him. Singers like Bobby Womack, Ben E. King, Otis Redding, Lou Rawls, Smokey Robinson, Al Green, all were influenced by Sam Cooke. Rod Stewart said when he was a teenager he listened to his recordings to try and copy his phrasing. Even singers like Steve Perry, lead singer of Journey, was strongly influenced by Sam Cooke.

    I have listened to his records through all the decades that have passed since his death. I will always love him.


  63. Mindy I added a topic re James’ song. Jumped on it right away! 🙂


  64. Mindy,

    Oh my goodness, what a horrible tragedy, and what a terrible mess it became with all the speculation! Thank you so much Mindy for taking the time to explain the death of a person who’s been a huge influence on you, and dear to your heart.
    I wonder if Sam Cooke will ever get justice for his death.


  65. MCL,

    I saw the new blog! That was fast work. I posted an apology for not e-mailing you first. I promise that if I hear anything more, I will let you know. Right now it is kind of confusing.


    I don’t think there will ever be justice for Sam Cooke. There has been talk of reopening the investigation. I don’t know what they can do, since this happened so long ago. I think Bertha Franklin is dead now and I don’t know about Elisa Boyer.

    It’s actually even more complicated, but I just provided an outline of the basic information. The police claimed that the two women passed a lie detector test, but that would not have even been admissible in court. I didn’t reveal any of the conspiracy theories, because I don’t like to deal in that kind of thing.

    There has been a good deal of criticism about the police investigation. I also remember that there was an attempt to introduce evidence about Elisa Boyer to the effect that she was a prostitute with a questionable past, but the prosecutor argued that it wasn’t relevant and fought to keep it out of the record. She was subsequently arrested some time after the inquest for prostitution and information was revealed that she was well known in the area and had been at this motel quite often.

    People have devoted a good deal of time and effort into researching all of the evidence and have concluded that there was more to what happened that night. The missing wallet and the thousands of dollars and credit cards are strong evidence that there may have been another motive for Sam Cooke being there.

    I know that the past cannot be changed. The heartbreak is that Sam Cooke was starting to make his best music. He wrote “A Change is Gonna Come” and the recording came out in 1965 after his death. He also wrote “Shake” and that was released at the same time. He had already founded his own record company and was producing music with artists he signed.

    I was checking out itunes to download some of his music and they have someone who recommends songs from artists. This person mentioned a song called “Just For You”, a producer’s demo that was recorded by Sam early on, maybe around 1958. “You Send Me” was released in 1957 and it was a huge hit that made Sam Cooke a star immediately. If not for this recommendation on itunes, I would never have known about this other song. On “Just For You”, Sam Cooke sings and there is background singing in harmony. I found out that it was his voice. So this was recorded with Sam Cooke harmonizing with himself. It’s a simple, beautiful song. Now I have added it to my collection. At first I cried when I heard it.

    We don’t know which artists will touch us deeply and have a lasting impact. I really try to celebrate his life by enjoying his records and remembering his greatness. He is considered the man who invented soul music. He was going in a more soulful and grittier direction with his music when he was killed. God only knows what he might have done had he lived, but there were so many artists who were inspired by him. They were left to carry on what he started.

    One last thing that I never knew about him. He started off as a gospel singer in a group called the Soul Stirrers. He sang in that group from 1951 to 1956, when he decided to take a huge risk and make the move to secular music. So Jacob and Sam Cooke have their gospel music background in common!

    I have gone on too long about this and have said more than I intended. Thank you for letting me share this with you. I thought that since you loved Jacob’s r&b voice so much, you might want to know some of the history of that music.


  66. Mindy,
    Oh yeah, Big Mama Thornton’s “Hound Dog” is the one to beat. Guys like Elvis and Rick Nelson made Black Blues music more acceptable for white audiences in those days. It’s interesting to watch some of the videos of my favorite Blues artist like Howlin’Wolf, Muddy Waters or Little Walter and note the audiences they are playing for. They are frequently conservative looking upper middle class European audiences who are doing sort of an avant-garde thing by exploring the folk sounds of American Blues.

    Big Mama is the best female blues harp players I have ever seen. There is a young French woman who lives in Australia that is new on the scene today that gives her a run for her money, but in her day, there were no female rivals. Check out the dance steps of Shaky Horton (the tall slim man) in this video and see if there isn’t a little bit of early Elvis in there, about half way through the harmonica jam that follows “Hound Dog.”

    Big Mama rocked before there was “Rock.”


  67. Mindy,

    It means alot to me that you went such lengths to let me learn more about Sam Cooke. Thanks a million!


  68. Gene,

    I cannot get over this woman! I am at a loss for words! Yes, Big Mama rocked it big time before rock and roll came along. In those days, it was almost impossible for black artists to get on the radio. She was a true original. That harmonica! I am listening to it as I am writing this and I can’t sit still! I seem to remember the name John Lee Hooker. Who was he?

    Yes, Shake Horton had some Elvis moves on him! This is just so great! Loving it!

    Thanks! 🙂


  69. Anita,

    Thank you for sharing my memories of Sam Cooke with you. Here is the link to “Just For You”.

    Sam – You will always be in my heart forever. You inspired and moved me like no one else. I am thankful that I got to hear you for the time we had you on this earth. You were taken from us too soon in a terrible way, but you will never really die. As long as we listen to your songs and remember the greatness, the joy, the genius of your incomparable voice, then you will live forever.


  70. Mindy,
    Big Mama was the BOMB alright. She’s another one of my home girls. I’m beginning to think that I live in the best part of the country for music. Who knew? Remember Janis Joplin’s “Ball and Chain?” Big Mama was the original recording artist of that song. Our own Siobhan does a nice cover of it as well. There’s an unlikely trio, Big Mama, Janis and Siobhan!

    Yeah, John Lee hooker is another legendry Delta Blues man. I remember him for just a few songs in particular; “Boom Boom,” “One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer” and “Boogie Chilllen.”

    He’s a little more crude, or old school than someone like Muddy Waters or BB King, but a step up the evolutionary ladder from Robert Johnson who, as legend has it, went down to the “Crossroads” to sell his soul to the devil. You are probably familiar with the very famous cover of his song by Eric Clapton and Cream. If you saw the movie “O Brother, Where Art Thou” there was a character named Robbie Johnson who was a parity of Robert Johnson, and where did the pick him up along their odyssey? Why, the crossroads, of course. If you haven’t seen it I would recommend you rectify that situation as soon as possible. It could be the funniest movie with the best soundtrack ever. Maybe.

    All of these songs were covered by rockers at one time or another. Even Melinda Doolittle covers two Robert Johnson songs on her album. (Another recommendation BTW)
    I found a nice duet with him a Bonnie Raitt that I’ll share with you because everybody loves bonnie Raitt.

    You may get the feeling that your interrupting something personal by the time they get through.


  71. Gene,

    Big Mama originated “Ball and Chain”? I had no idea! Yes, I loved Janis Joplin’s version of that song! Is there a video of Big Mama?

    I never saw the movie “O Brother, Where Art Thou. They have it on cable all the time. Now I must check it out!

    So is this John Lee Hooker with Bonnie Raitt? That was freaking amazing! I love Bonnie Raitt. You know it’s funny, maybe I have liked country music more than I realized. Ooh, do I know what you mean by feeling that I am interrupting something personal! 🙂


  72. Mindy,
    I found this rendition of Ball and Chain by chance because it isn’t labeled as such. Lucky find because it is really good. She could really convey the feeling and emotion of her songs. She is singing with buddy Guy’s band in this video. He is still alive and playing today and is considered among the best guitarist in the world. There is another video of her doing “Ball and Chain” in 1984, which was the year that hard living got the best of her. She is less than half of her usual weight in that video but still sings her heart out. This one is much better though.

    That was John Lee Hooker getting familiar with Bonnie Raitt all right. He also apeared in the Big Mama Thornton video where she played harmonica. He is wearing a light colored suit and is the last solo player at the end of the tape.

    It’s interesting that you referred to that video as country. I can see why because Bonnie Raitt is one of those musicians who is hard to classify by genre, or in American Idol terminology, She doesn’t know who she is as an artist. Ha ha etc. It prompted me to look at the Genre classifications of all of my Bonnie Raitt collection and some are Rock, some are Blues Rock and some are Blues. I would have said Blues Rock and occasionally Pop. That said, she does have a Country feel as well. John Lee Hooker is all Blues, all the time but you will hear Rock songs all the time that are covers of these old Blues singers songs. The British artist in particular were / are enamored with American Blues. The lines can get a little foggy between The Blues and its children, Rock R&B and Country. There are also elements of the Blues in Gospel music. I noticed a few Big Mama videos of her songing tradition Gospel songs. I didn’t know she had done anything in that area. They say that Elvis used to like to have post concert vocal jam sessions with his long time backing vocalist the Jordanaires, who were a gospel group in their own right as you probably know.

    “O Brother…” is a modern classic. Extremely well written and almost every line in it is quotable and very funny. The photography and the transformation to the period of the thirties are very well done. You’ll probably appriciate the fact that it is a George Clooney movie as well. That’s not him singing, BTW. His singing voice is done by Dan Tyminski from Allison Krauss’s band. She performs several of the traditional songs on the soundtrack as well. It’s worth a couple of hours for sure.


  73. Gene,

    I have a lot to learn from you! So these blues songs came before today’s r&b soul music? I know that Sam Cooke was singing with the Soul Stirrers from 1951 to 1956 before he switched to secular music. I wonder if he ever met up with any of these artists.

    I guess that I was wrong to call Bonnie Raitt country. I really don’t know my music all that well, at least in this area. So all these artists came along before rock and roll as we know it? Elvis, Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis and Buddy Holly came later? I never knew about this music.

    I can’t believe you brought up the gospel sessions Elvis had with the Jordonaires after his concerts! So you know about that! I saw a documentary about Elvis some time ago and they showed footage of him after his concerts with the Jordonaires and they were singing gospel into the wee hours of the morning. I got tears in my eyes watching it. It really touched me. Elvis seemed to feel so much at home, so at peace singing this music. I never knew about his love of gospel. It was like he was feeding his soul. Just watching his face while he sang this music was an extraordinary experience. He wasn’t the happiest person in the years before his death. I remember that I used to cry when he would forget the words and seeing him so bloated and overweight and just out of it was so hard. But to see him like this and sense the comfort and strength it gave him to sing gospel, somehow made me feel better. After I watched it, I couldn’t get it out of my mind. It was a side of Elvis I never saw.

    Believe me, I am going to check out that movie. Oh yes, I will definitely appreciate that it’s a George Clooney movie.

    You are like an encyclopedia! 🙂


  74. Hi Mindy,
    Yeah, the Blues predates R&B by at least 100 years, probably more. I’ll study it and give you a better answer if I can. The Blues comes out of slavery.
    You may have noticed how a lot of traditional Blues songs have lyrics that repeat in sort of a call and answer fashion, except call and answer style singing is usually between two people and in the Blues, it’s not uncommon for one person to sing this way. For example, one of the most famous Blues songs, “Crossroads Blues” by Robert Johnson goes like this:

    *I went to the crossroad
    fell down on my knees
    **I went to the crossroad
    fell down on my knees
    Asked the Lord above “Have mercy, now
    save poor Bob, if you please

    +Mmmmm, standin’ at the crossroad
    I tried to flag a ride
    ++Standin’ at the crossroad
    I tried to flag a ride
    Didn’t nobody seem to know me
    everybody pass me by

    I added the marks where he repeats himself. I believe that comes from one slave working in the field calling out a line and the others repeating it. This could be the origins of military cadence songs, but again, I need to research that. I believe it most surely is the origin of the same feature in some Gospel songs. In the small churches it’s not unusual for the preacher to lead the choir and congregation in singing that morphs into preaching, all the while saying or singing a line and the congregation repeating. It gets intense with unbridaled enthusiasm and outpouring of emotion being the rule of the day. Something to behold for sure. As a side note, this is no doubt the type of setting that Jacob learned his chops in as you know Sam Cooke, Aretha Franklin, Al Green Gladys Knight and on and on came from this same environment.

    To get back to your question, I don’t know about the Blues artist that we have talked about like Big Mama, or Muddy Waters or John Lee Hooker actually predate Sam Cooke, but their music does predate his, and as you can see, informs his. He was a new branch in the stream though and influenced many to follow.

    Without having looked up the dates and done the research necessary to really make the case, it would be very safe to say that Robert Johnson predated all Rock and Roll and all R&B. He is considered the father of modern Blues but to listen to him you might wonder why. There are others in his generation as well and they mimicked each other. None of them had any formal training on the instruments they played, most commonly, guitar and Harmonica, aka Blues Harp. So they invented their own ways of playing these instruments. I know that Eric Clapton has had a life long obsession with these old Blues men and their styles and his style has been heavily influenced by them. You can look at his earliest albums and find songs like “Spoonful,” “Walking Blues,” and perhaps his most famous song with Cream, “Crossroads.” All of these go back to the root of the modern Blues, Robert Johnson. Clapton is only one example. The same thing is true throughout the British evasion rock groups, later Blues artist, and some R&B artist. Even Melinda Doolittle has two Robert Johnson songs on her excellent album. So again, to answer your question the Blues predates Buddy Holly, Elvis and Jerry Lee. I’ll have to peruse their song list and pick out the traditional Blues songs. Sometimes the influences are in the style of playing or the repetitive lyrics rather than the song itself but covers are the norm in Blues. Everybody does the traditional songs as well as their own music.

    The best of Elvis was when he wasn’t on the big stage in the funny suits but when he was just enjoying the music he loved. My favorite Elvis appearance is what is called the Black Leather concert. He and his band members are sitting around on stools singing some of his songs with acoustic instruments. I think the drummer is using brushes on a drum case or box. It’s very good stuff. Dolly Pardon is the same way. She is at her best singing casually, I particularly like her singing backing vocals or close harmony or singing some of the better songs she has written like “Coat of Many Colors” (now I have a tear) or “Daddy.” She is an incredibly talented woman, but you would never know it to see her doing the Vegas thing with Kenny Rodgers or any of her performances in a large venue.

    Believe it or not there is another singing contest on CMT that is about half way though it’s season called CMT Next Superstar. It is produced by Nigel Lythgoe and his son Simon. It’s much different than Idol. They move around to different places, sometimes bars, sometimes on the streets of Nashville and this week they were at Graceland, the historic Sun Records, and then Warner brother records. They did all of the cover photography at Graceland, had imput on their wardrobe and cover layout for a new single that they recorded at Sun in the very spot where Elvis, BB King, Waylon Jennings, Jerry lee Lewis and Roy Orbison (to name a few) recorded. They even used the vintage microphones and recording equipment. Can you imagine getting to do that? Next they created their CD, put it in the sleeve they designed and then took it to Warner Brothers where they each had to sell themselves to staffers from the president down to the mailroom guy. Each of those staffers then got to vote on the contestants. The common theme of each week is the bottom two contestants can sing any song they choose in a sudden death sing for your life competition and the judges, one permanent and two guests decide which one stays and which one goes. There are a couple of guys in this competition that you may like. I don’t know if you get the CMT network, but if so, it’s on Friday nights.

    Mindy, I’m trying to picture you wearing your new country cowboy boots with Scotty stitched across the top along with a black fedora with Ray Ban sunglasses like John Belushi in the Blues Brothers. It’s a look!

    I thought Clooney might get your attention. If you rent the movie I’ll offer you a money back guarantee that you will enjoy it.


  75. Gene,

    I am rocking to “You Don’t Move Me No More” by Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton. I am listening to the preview on itunes. WOW! This woman sure knows how to sing it. I read up on her life online and was sad to see that she died at the age of 57! So young. I read that she did drink a lot and had a heart attack. Also, she never got the money she was supposed to for some of the songs she wrote and there were a number of problems in her career. So many black artists just never had the chance to be heard and were ripped off. I also read what happened to Johnny Ace. She told the story of how he accidentally killed himself with his gun. Horrible story.

    I think you can hear the influence of the blues in early Elvis. It’s amazing to learn that this music has been around so long. I guess it took artists like Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, Buddy Holly and others to make it popular.

    Did I ever tell you how much I loved Roy Orbison? There was no one like him ever. That voice! Wasn’t he around with Elvis and Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis?

    When you say the black leather concert, do you mean Elvis’ comeback concert in 1968 in Las Vegas? If that’s the one, I have seen it so many times I can’t even count.

    Sam Cooke found a way to appeal to the white audience. That was the key to his success. He did kind of pop/r&b in the beginning. He was really smart the way he established himself. He got the hits and commercial success and then made sure to get the publishing rights to all his songs when he was signed by RCA. Later on he established his own record label and signed and produced black artists. Right before his death, he already started to move towards grittier soul songs. This was what he really loved and finally had the clout and power to do it. His live concert at the Harlem Club in Miami was recorded. This was a black audience, so Sam could sing full out soul the way he wanted. The recording of this concert is considered to be the greatest soul album ever. I don’t think he ever forgot his background in gospel and blues.

    I read that Big Mama and John Lee Hooker and Robert Johnson and Muddy Waters all had to teach themselves how to play the harmonica and other instruments. They had no other way to learn.

    So think of me tonight listening to all of Big Mama’s songs on itunes and having the time of my life. I wish she and the others had enjoyed the success they deserved.

    Country cowboy boots? Black fedora? Ray Ban sunglasses? Okay, that is more like me. I don’t know if this would a good look for me, but you never know!

    Please don’t trouble yourself and do too much research on my account. You have alread done so much to enlighten me about his wonderful music. I will definitely be checking it out.

    One thing that bothers me is that my computer guy told me not to go on youtube anymore. He said that’s how I got this horrible virus that destroyed Windows in my computer. I do have great anti-virus protection, but he said I can still get a virus from certain sites. I always go to youtube. Now I am upset, because I have to be so careful. It’s not cheap to have him come and fix my computer when this happens. That’s why I am listening to the songs on itunes. I don’t think they remastered Big Mama’s songs, though.


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