James Durbin’s Shocking American Idol Elimination. Fan Outrage Alert


Okay, this elimination really hurt. What is wrong with this show? James received the
lowest number of votes? Really? REALLY?

Okay, relax now! Perhaps the producers are planning another Daughtry scenario. You know the story. Rock star, Chris Daughtry was eliminated during the Results Show Of American Idol Season 5. However, he went to enormous success post-Idol. His concerts and CD sales speak volumes.

Now, after last nights’s Top 4 elimination, the gifted and gracious James Durbin finds himself exactly in the same position as Chris Daughtry. Two rockers eliminated – 5 years apart – at the Top 4 level of an American Idol competition. Will history repeat itself? Let’s hope so.

James Durbin Fans Shocked, Upset At His ‘American Idol’ Ouster

No one could predict this elimination. James managed to avoid the bottom after all these weeks. And, Haley, whose 2nd home was the Bottom 3, somehow fought her way all the way to the coveted Top 3.

Many are saying that the incessant pimping of James by the judges was responsible for the downfall. I do agree that the judges should have given him more constructive advice in terms of improving his performances.

However, let’s face it, the guy came out on that stage week after week and ignited the audience with his star power and style.

Yes, his lower range was a problem – a huge problem. Yet, this week, did you notice that he avoided singing in this part of his range? He knew it wasn’t working and, smart, savvy guy that he is, highlighted his strengths and nestled his vocal prowess in the comfortable confines of his upper range.

‘American Idol’ Outrage: The Wrong Person Got Sent Home!

And don’t even get me started with all the ridiculous accusations about James’ supposed “pitchy” singing. Does anyone even know what the term means? Honestly!

The only time James suffered intonation problems was when he performed his emotionally charged ” Without You”. But, during the song, he managed to rally and bring the song home. The back end of that song was brilliant.

I wish James only the very best in his career and can’t wait to see and hear him on tour. Please come to Canada!

How about you? Are you missing James already? Do you think he should have a special moment at the American Idol Season Finale?

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

105 Responses to “James Durbin’s Shocking American Idol Elimination. Fan Outrage Alert”

  1. I wasn’t outraged. I think he’s electric, a diamond in the rough guy – he’s got the charisma and a nice voice to pull things off. But Haley is a better singer, and has grown in performance over the past few weeks, plus the judges probably saved her with the diss on Wednesday – it ignited fury with a lot of fans.

    I wish James well – to do what he’s accomplished with his disabilities is very impressive. Hope he’s got good people around him to keep him whole in the ride to come.


  2. Partly my sorrow for seeing James go was his reaction, he was heart broken and showed it. he wanted to go all the way and said it.

    During the shows, what I really loved about James was his complete joy in what he was doing and his real sense of who he was and what he wanted to do.

    He stumbled just at the end this week he needed to knock it out of the park again and it didn’t happen.

    I wanted him to win because I felt he needed it the most. But as MCL says it’s not the end of the road, and he can have a successful career. I really hope he does.


  3. Here’s an article written by Chris Daughtrey’s producer where he gives James advice . . .



  4. I’m sulking. I sulked last season after Siobhan was eliminated & I intend to sulk this year too. I honestly don’t know if I’ll be able to watch again. I plan on voting for Haley but not with great vigor and mostly only because I have Twitter friends who like her. But I look forward to the extra time on Wednesdays & Thursdays & I will also continue to follow with interest this forum.


  5. And for any of you who might even be remotely interested, I will turn 56 in several weeks and I feel that I have earned the right to sulk.


  6. Darlene-Happy Early Birthday and please – sulk to your heart’s content. You have indeed earned it! 🙂


  7. Happy predated birthday. 56 is a good age, I think you will like it.

    I wish I had read this before I made my last post in the Top 4 results thread.

    I posted a link to Siobhan perfroming her new song at the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville. I’ve been there and it’s a very famous and cool place for her to perform. All of the performers are songwriters ranging from brand new, like Siobhan to old veterans with hundreds of songs to their credit.


  8. Thanks Gene & MCL :). Thanks for the Bluebird Cafe tip on Siobhan – I had seen that she was performing there but haven’t had time to check out the video yet. I’m very happy that Siobhan does indeed seem to moving forward with her career. And I know in my heart of hearts that James will be fine too. I read the link that Louise posted (& reposted it to Twitter) so obviously there is some interest in him. I’m just sad that he didn’t get the hometown celebration – he deserved that. But someone had to go home and I certainly wish Scotty, Lauren & Haley well. They’re all very talented people.

    Trying to keep the sulking to a minimum :).


  9. Darlene,

    I have a few years on you, so happy birthday! We went through this last year with Siobhan, but that was much worse. She didn’t even get to top three.

    Sulk all you want! That’s what we do when our favorite goes home. I am still not sure how this all happened, but I simply do not subscribe to the theory that the votes were manipulated. I am not big on conspiracy theories and don’t intend to start believing them now. I can’t think of any reason for the producers to want to sabotage James and not have him in the top three.

    I wrote some of my thoughts on the other blog, so no sense repeating it all here. Just think about the contrasting store lines in the last two weeks – Haley was getting all this terrible and unfair criticism from the judges and James was being all but touted as the winner. Is that what did him in? Backlash against the judges for pushing him too hard and going after Haley too much? I warned about something like this a week or so ago in one of my posts. I said that James was talented enough to not need this excessive pimping. Maybe it hurt him. We will never know for sure.

    It’s nice to know that Siobhan is performing and moving on with her career. I have confidence that James will have his success. Things have a funny way of working out in the end.


  10. Sorry, I meant to say – just think of the contrasting STORY lines in the last two weeks!


  11. I was horrified at Randy and JLo’s reactions to James’s ouster last night. Their actions and expressions didn’t say “We are sad to see you go.” They implied, “We’re so sorry our machinations didn’t keep you in the game. We are shocked.” At this point, looking shocked is insulting to the other contestants.


  12. GOOD NEWS!!! I just read on MJ’s blog that Idol agreed to allow James to have his hometown visit celebration as had been planned before he was eliminated. It just won’t be televised. The most important thing is that James is going to be recognized by his hometown. YEAH!!!! That makes me very happy.


  13. Unfortunately the judges have devolved into either insulting contestants or heaping on generalized praise. Poor James didn’t even see this coming.

    Remember how Scotty came out and was electric after the one time the judges gave him constructive feedback? It makes me sad to think of all the other potential moments we’ve missed. James would have benefited from constructive specific performance based advice as much as Haley, Lauren and Scotty would have.

    Maybe the judges will figure out that helping the performers become better artists is more effective than trying to talk us into thinking that they are.


  14. Louise,

    Yes! You beat me to it! I was going to come here and reveal this great news about James getting his homecoming after all.

    This has really lifted my spirits! It just feels so right. I think it was said that Idol has never done this before for any contestant. Now this young man can bask in the love and support from his hometown. What a lovely gesture! This is just what James needed to let him know how much he is loved.

    Happy news for once! 🙂


  15. Darlene, from my post last night, you could tell how upset I was with James’ elimination. I shed a few tears last year for Siobhan because of the horrible treatment she recived from Simon and Kara. I was sobbing last night for James – and for the thousands of children who were rooting for him. He didn’t have to win – just make that TOP 3.

    I said on Wednesday night Randy’s shenanigans was preplanned SCRPTED to get sympathy for Haley. It worked, huh? Does anyone think that many of James’ fans may have thought he was safe, so they put in those sympathy votes for her? I mean no offense towards her fans, but the manipulation was so obvious.

    I don’t care who wins this year. Last year, when Siobhan went home, I wanted Crystal to take it all. The Top 3 seem like really nice kids, but I do want to be entertained. I hope at least one of them steps up the game, and really has a special performance!

    I got upset with some of the comments made at MJ’s and I wrote:

    For those who do not understand Tourette’s Syndrome and/or Aspergers (high functioning Autism), please, please read up on the topic. Many are blessed not to have a family member or a child’s classmate with these disabilities. Honest, you will understand why an exception has been made. American Idol has had a talented and extraordinary contestant on its show.

    I am so happy Santa Cruz is honoring James, and he will feel special in his own way!


  16. I meant, “I said on Wednesday night Randy’s shenanigans was preplanned SCRIPTED to get sympathy for Haley.”

    That was so weird.

    Also, I think Jennifer was in on it, but her comments were to be seen as encouraging. When Ryan asked that question about who won the first round, and Randy provided that stupid answer – at least Jennifer refused to answer it.

    Gene, thank you for passing along the info about the Bluebird Cafe. I have a great desire to see James and Siobhan go on tour together. They have much in common. Well, I can dream, can’t I?

    Darlene, I also have a few years on you, too. Honestly, 56 is a great age! :o)

    Mindy, when there are 600 posts on some forums, yours might be missed. Please post what you wrote – OK? Even if you disagree with me, I am interested in all opinions!!

    MCL, you wrote: “I do agree that the judges should have given him more constructive advice in terms of improving his performances.” I DO AGREE! As far as that special moment? Getting to sing with Aerosmith and Steven Tyler! That has to be one of James’ dreams.

    For me, the MOMENT OF THE SEASON was James singing, “Will You Love Me Tomorrow.”

    Darlene, I am sulking, too!


  17. Wow, Grammie Karl, we are so on the same wavelength. I agree regarding the Moment of the Season – it was absolutely “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” especially the opening a capella segment. All the people who are saying online that James can’t sing should be forced to listen to the opening passage non-stop for at least several hours.

    I want to throw out some other factors that may have led to what I consider James’s too early departure. He was endlessly compared to Adam Lambert and labeled by many as an “Adam Lambert wannabe”. As an dedicated Adam Lambert fan, I think the comparison was completely bogus. James, in my opinion, was NEVER trying to be Adam Lambert. He was trying to be James. Also, 2 weeks ago, Adam came out in tweets and in an online article strongly in favor of Haley. Many Adam fans are quite slavish to what Adam says & I think his statements probably increased the intensity of voting for Haley. How many votes were swayed by these 2 issues? Probably at least a few. I personally am annoyed that Adam stepped into this process so strongly; in my opinion, his support of Haley was heavy-handed. Other Idol contestants have stepped much more softly i.e. Crystal Bowersox sending a supportive tweet to Casey.

    I just think in the final moments Haley’s fans mobilized more strongly than James’s did. I could have voted more on Wednesday but I was tired.

    I am also disappointed in how the judges have conducted themselves this season. J Turner expressed being horrified at how Randy & JLo reacted to the news that James was leaving. I think they acted equally irresponsibly when Pia left. I think the judges need to be very careful how they react because when they appear so upset & shocked they are essentially saying “you deserve to stay and someone else deserves to go home”.

    For the record, I’m still sulking. But I have to mention that I went to an excellent local production of “Xanadu” the musical tonight & saw a wonderful young singer in the lead role of Kira/Clio perform while roller skating on a tiny stage. I was so impressed. And the supporting singers, choreography & staging were amazing. So much fun.

    I will miss James. But I will follow his post-Idol career with great interest.


  18. Addendum: I am also thrilled that James is being allowed to have a hometown celebration, even if it’s not televised. But I am sure there will be a lot of online nastiness about what will be perceived as “special treatment”.


  19. Ellen DeGeneres wrote on her Twitter Page to her over 6 Million followers on May 11:

    “Disagree with Idol judges! Haley was amazing and gets my vote tonight. Hope she gets yours.”

    Ellen then wrote this on May 13:

    “I can’t believe James went home last night. It doesn’t make sense. What is this, Friday the 13th?”

    Things are becoming clearer now, aren’t they?


  20. Darlene,

    My understanding was that Adam had previously, openly, supported James prior to supporting Haley. I agree that anyone’s endorsement is one of the factors in her success. I also think that she and James have both been recipients of some of the supporters of eliminated contestants, with Haley probably having the greater advantage there.

    I think that regardless of where they came from, Haley has earned her fans with no help from the Judges. I was a Pia fan and really had no interest in voting for anyone else this season when she left, even though I had been watching Haley who never failed to disappoint me with some aspect of her performance. I too was sulking in the finest Idol fan tradition. Then it started coming together for Haley and she began to earn my support with very strong performances. She has worn her way into the hearts of many in a similar fashion.

    I also believe that Pia, who was arguably the most skilled and talented singer in the competition, being eliminated in ninth is a world apart from anyone, no matter who it is, being cut at forth place. Many good contestants have gone down in forth but as they said when Pia left, it was unprecedented. That’s why she is receiving all the special treatment. By time we are down to the top four people vote for one person and if someone goes home the only reason is that his /or her fans let them down, or they didn’t have as many as the next guy.

    We could entertain notions of vote tampering but I see no logic in any of those arguments. The one time that I think they may have actually massaged the votes a little was week before last when tornados wiped out my state and parts of many others. Aside from the real tragedies, hundreds of thousands were without power, phones or TV. Frankly, if they normalized the votes under such circumstances, I wouldn’t object.

    I think James will be ok and as a rocker, probably better off than if he had won. I was impressed with his Idol run, especially considering his special circumstances and I’m glad he is getting the hometown parade.


  21. Grammie Keri,

    I was a little confused by what you wrote about there being 600 posts on a forum, mine might be missed. Are you asking me to copy and paste them on this site?

    I will tell you that I wrote a very strongly worded post on Michael Slezak’s Tvline blog. I am hesitant to post it here because it might offend some. I was basically going after him for being so insane about Haley’s plight on the show. I thought he got really carried away. Believe me, he had things to say about James that you and Darlene would not wish to hear. He took some shots at Scotty, too. When he likes one contestant, he becomes deaf, dumb and blind to the others. His cause is – SAVE THE GROWLER. During Adam’s season it was – SAVE THE ROCKER for Allison Iraheta.

    I did reiterate my views on Haley’s behavior with the judges. Some here have disagreed with me and that’s perfectly okay. I will tell you that I went step by step, telling him how I thought the whole scenario played out. I do think it was all scripted with Randy playing the villain of the piece. I think they set it up to make Haley the victim who triumphs over the evil, cruel judges in the end.

    I never use bad language, but there was some sarcasm and straight talk in that comment.

    I wanted to know if you could clarify your post where you showed the two tweets from Ellen, one supporting Haley and then the other being outraged over James going home.
    What did you mean when you said – things are becoming clearer now? Did you mean that there was this big campaign to support Haley and it cost James a spot in the top three?

    I haven’t said much on MJ’s blog. I would have to go back and check to see what I wrote. Remember that I couldn’t post for a day and a half until I got my computer back.

    I have to tell you that it never occurred to me that James would go home. Not once. If you were on MJ’s blog, then you must have read some people predicting him as the shock boot this week. I read it and thought they were nuts. But I couldn’t go on there to say anything.

    The bottom line is that I think this was business with Haley was all planned. The judges say what they are told to say. As I said before somewhere else on this site, the judges see the dress rehearsal and can get a good sense of how they all did. So they knew that Haley killed it both weeks, first with HOTRS and then this week with “I Who Have Nothing”. I said it was like a movie script. Why they did it, I have no idea. I can’t get inside the heads of the people who run this show, nor would I want to.

    What was so awful is that James never saw it coming. When I watched the results show, having already found out what happened from following it online, I almost couldn’t bear it. James never expected it because the judges all told him it would never happen! They never gave him a bit of a reality check. They built his hopes and expectations up sky high and it all came crashing down around him.

    One last thing I want to be clear about – I do believe that Haley deserved to be in the top three. My anger is at the judges and the phony nonsense that went down the last two weeks. She has worked hard and earned her way.


  22. The topic of Idol celebrities supporting certain contestants is interesting. I don’t remember that happening in previous years. I was surprised to read that Adam threw his support behind Haley–but pleasantly so. After Wednesday night, I was still seeing Haley as the underdog and thought she needed all the support she could get to beat Lauren to the top three.

    I do want to make it clear that this year I have not voted at all. I could never decide who my absolute favorite one was out of James, Scotty, and Haley.

    And as for Ellen’s comments about voting for Haley and then being surprised that James was voted off, I believe those thoughts can go hand in hand without being a conspiracy. I wanted to see James, Scotty, and Haley in the final three. Even though Haley wasn’t my first choice to win everything, I could still understand why someone like me could vote for her to make it into the top three, but at the same time assuming that Scotty and James were so popular that they would be there without my vote.

    This has been the most interesting year I’ve ever watched Idol in terms of the contestants and the type of music they sing. If you had told me before I got to “know” any of these contestants that I would be favoring a young man who prefers metal and a young man who does country, I would NEVER have believed you. But both James and Scotty really won me over with their personalities AND their talent. I really love both of them. I wasn’t so sold on Haley at the beginning, but each week she won me over a little more too and I really think she deserves to be in the top three. Just because I really like Haley, doesn’t mean that my heart didn’t ache for James. Even before the elimination show, I mentioned to my co-worker that if Scotty and James were in the finale and I loved them both equally, I wouldn’t be able to bear James losing because I knew how much it meant to him.

    I really find it sad that people on some blogs are treating Haley and Scotty like they took James’ rightful spot from him. We can never be sure exactly how James ended up being eliminated, but I’m inclined to believe that it must have been because people like me assumed that James had so many fans that he would definitely be there in the finale. So they threw their support behind one of the others.

    My co-worker also believes the theory that several here seem to believe–that the judges were trying to throw sympathy votes Haley’s way. I’ve tried to think that through, but I just don’t believe it. Not that I don’t think it is beyond this show to do that, but I just don’t think TPTB have ever imagined Haley in their top three and I don’t think they wanted her there. They really never gave her any pimp time or gave any indication that they were pushing her.

    One thing is for sure–we’ll never know exactly how all of this happened. But as I mentioned before, I feel sorry for Scotty and Haley because so many people on other sites are blaming them for James’ elimination.


  23. I love this forum! Now I do not feel so bad and I can honestly wish Haley, Scotty, and Lauren well.

    I am planning to attend the concert tour – and looking forward to seeing my favorite songbirds again.

    Melinda, Allison, Siobhan, and James Fans – Cheers! We may just get a chance to see these talented and hard-working people rise through the ashes and tears. Yes, it is a cliche, but sometimes we learn more from our “failures” than our “successes”.


  24. My choices would have been James & Scotty in the final, but the girls are talented too. Haley has something really special going on, and since her parents are musicians, I trust that her gifts will be properly nurtured.

    I am still down in the dumps because of the nagging feeling that the judges have been heavily coached by the producers this season. It makes me feel foolish for even watching. I wonder what Steven & Jennifer really think about these kids.


  25. My thoughts are so much on James today. This is the day of the Top 3 Homecoming, and what a shame he doesn’t get to be a part of it. I really feel that to be in the Top 3 meant even more to James than to the other three. It would have been such a treat to see his homecoming next Thursday. I hope he’s feeling at least a little better.


  26. “My thoughts are so much on James today. This is the day of the Top 3 Homecoming, and what a shame he doesn’t get to be a part of it.”

    I’m coming out of lurkdom to say:
    James is getting a homecoming of sorts. AI made an exception and are sponsoring a smaller homecoming, which Idol won’t televise. But it will be televised locally and streamed on the internet, and I would be suprised if footage shows up on, say, the finale. Link: http://www.kionrightnow.com/


  27. Hello to all.
    I follow AI as it gives me a lot of joy watching these kids realize their dreams.

    I catch up on news about everything AI through another blog but very rarely do I post. But reading through the other blog as of late, always leaves me with a heavy heart with all the negativities.
    Someone there led me to MCL’s and I like how respectful the bloggers are here. So, kudos to all for being so.

    Anyways, I am one that feel saddened by James early departure but it is what it is. I don’t follow metal but I believe he is a very gifted young man and hope for the best for him.

    If anything, the DJ at a rock station my husband listens to on a popular radio station has given a couple of good shout-outs to James today.


  28. I have been thinking about this – I usually listen before I watch the show so what I HEAR makes the first impression on me. Something special and different in that voice or performance catches my attention.

    I THINK that the top three remaining contestants have the most complete WHOLE PACKAGE – sight and sound – that appeals to the majority.

    [Pia was beautiful to hear and see; however, some found her too cool and “polished” to be believable.]

    From the start, Scotty has had that warm and intangible charismatic factor – just plain “LIKABILITY”. Last week his authenticity came through in the sessions with GAGA; that is, he really seems to be that small town boy with a big heart and voice.

    Lauren SEEMS to be every mother’s daughter or every young girl’s best friend (and she CAN sing).

    Now, Haley has been the real dark horse. She is the one who came from behind and kept getting better all the time.

    Then the judges seemed to be singling her out for criticism and giving everyone else a pass (and Haley stood up to them).

    I think we Americans love to pull for this story because it is OUR story.

    I THINK that James’ Heavy Metal/Rocker image is just too far off the MIDDLE for majority tastes (as are most of my favorites).

    Enjoy the rest of the season!


  29. miniglik and SamanthaRae,

    Welcome!!! 🙂


  30. Thanks Vonnie. I apologize that I posted information that was already posted. I swear I read the thread earlier, just came back and read the new comments. 😀


  31. Everyone should listen to/watch Steven’s interview on E! online. Granted it’s the editor (Ryan) interviewing the reporter (Steven), but it’s still interesting. Some of the complaints people have had about Steven this season could be answered.


  32. Miniglik,

    Thank you soooo much for the link regarding James’ homecoming! That’s fantastic news. What incredible , determined fans James has!!

    I didn’t feel that James’ last performance night was one of his best. “Don’t Stop Believin'” sounded very kareoke to me, and like MCL said, I wish he had sung a ballad. James needed to be incredible that night, like he has been in weeks prior, and I think that is part of why he unfortunatly didn’t make it. Even though, I voted for almost 2 whole hours JUST for him.

    This has been such a FRUSTRATING SEASON!!!


  33. I respectfully disagree in regard to James’s likability factor. Among people I have spoken with, some of James’s most ardent supporters are quite “solid” middle America people. But they are not country singers and I think that being a country singer of some sort is a tremendous advantage on Idol.

    I have to say that I am going to have to think really hard in regard to watching Idol next season. I tried to watch this year and not get really attached to anyone in order to avoid my meltdown last year when Siobhan got voted off. I couldn’t do it.

    I just bought every single one of James’s studio recordings on iTunes. Gonna’ have me a little metal/rock love fest.


  34. I’m sorry – I meant to say that JAMES is not a country singer. Neither, obviously, is Haley. Which is part of why I don’t think she is going to win. Also, frankly, I don’t think she’s as “likable” as Scotty or Lauren.

    And, for the record, my parents were HUGE country fans. I grew up with country music and have tremendous respect for it.



    I just think ROCK and Heavy Metal are not POPULAR in this narrow arena…

    My dirty little secret is that I too listen to country radio when I am on the road for long periods of time – it is good traveling music. However, the last time I bought country was Mary Chapin-Carpenter – and that isn’t main-stream country.

    I do download (and pay for) music I like and (as with the last few years – Siobhan and Allison) I got caught up with hoping against hope that the “Rockers” could get a bit farther – now I have lost hope…

    BTW – IMHO – James’ recordings are very good so if you love JAMES – buy his music!!!


  36. My two favorite music genres are classic rock and country music. This season I’ve voted for Naima, Haley, and James, and I’ve always been fine with Scotty winning. And he will. But it’s James I’m emotionally invested in. I cried when he was eliminated even though I suspected it was time.

    I’ve posted this elsewhere, but there were some things from his streaming hometown press conference if y’all are interested:

    -The pizza place he worked at closed two days before AI auditions and that’s why he was unemployed. He jokes, “I’m still unemployed”
    -He wouldn’t want his fans to stop watching the show because he’s gone. He’s grateful to the show and cares about all the people that work for it
    -He gained 30 lbs on the show (grabbed his gut and said “this is what Idol gave me”)
    -He just got a video of his dad playing a whole concert. He hasn’t watched it yet, but apparently his dad’s band was opening for a band that included none other but Randy Jackson
    -He found out he was going to get to do the abbreviated homecoming just before performing on Leno; he was on 40 minutes of sleep and felt his voice was gone, but that reenergized him


  37. Thanks for posting the JamesFacts :). Those are great bits of info about him. I just think he brought so much good energy to the show and I just can’t imagine it without him.

    Thanks for your response, Julia. After I posted, I realized that it was more about the MUSIC that James was singing vs. the kind of person that James is. He is absolutely adorable, in my opinion.

    I’m so glad that Santa Cruz is able to honor him in the way that they wanted. Did you see the special cupcakes with his picture on them? How cool is that?


  38. Here’s the link to Steven Tyler’s interview. http://www.eonline.com/videos/v101797_steven-tyler-talks-“american-idol”.html

    I just wanted to say how much I sympathize with James regarding coping with Asperger’s/Tourette’s. I hope that if he has the voice and a platform he will raise awareness for the cause. So many people, children and adults, deal with unnecessary discrimination and judgement because people think the syndrome is over-diagnosed or simply not real. My premature son grew slowly into a four year old who was not catching up with his developmental milestones. It has been incredibly difficult for my family to cope with. I don’t do a lot of work at my older son’s school or other volunteering, whether it be for his swim team or offering to watch my nieces and nephews. My nuclear family was shattered. The boys’ dad left us. Coping with any kind of disability is hardship not only for the individual but for that person’s loved ones. I’m sure James’s parents were very brave. He seemed like an incredibly well-adjusted young man.


  39. Rosanne,

    Did you notice how thrilled Randy looked when Ryan announced Lauren was in the
    Top 3? I’m so convinced now of what you’ve been saying almost the whole season, that A.I. wants a Scotty/Lauren finale.

    They better get their act together next season, or I seriously believe it may be the demise of the show, especially when so many of us can’t wait for X-Factor.

    I’m not ruling out the possibility that the A.I. producers are controlling the judges responses. But, you would think that Randy, having been a judge from the very beginning wouldn’t stand for that. I’ve been the most disappointed with Randy, because he’s the veteran. He was so much better as a judge in seasons past, and I always liked him alot. I’ve gotten so angry and frustrated with him this season, and I want the old Randy back, the sensible Randy, and gave good advice!


  40. Anita-no I didn’t notice. Was he over the top thrilled or just being polite thrilled?


  41. Rosanne,

    I would say polite thrilled. Randy had a huge smile on his face. Steven didn’t smile at all, but only clapped. He had a concerned look on his face, and so did I for that matter! I have this huge feeling that Jennifer and Randy really didn’t want Haley in the Top 3!

    Jim from MTV is a Haley fan, and said he tweeted Nigel to remind him to take her votes out of the tally. He was so upset with how they have been treating Haley all season. I really wonder what Nigel’s position is on everything that’s been going on this season.


  42. Anita-what did he mean re taking Haley’s votes out of the tally? My eyes are closing here – busy weekend. My brain is not computing. 🙂


  43. Rosanne,

    I can’t remember Jim’s precise words, but he meant take Haley’s votes out of the total number of votes that came in Wednesday night, so then Haley wouldn’t make it to the Top 3.


  44. Oh I see. This show is making everyone crazy this year. I will be really surprised if Haley is in the Top 2. We’ll see soon enough I guess.


  45. Rosanne,
    Now that James is gone, I’ve decided to board the “Haley Train”! I really want a Haley/Scotty Finale, and would love to see Haley win. I’ll be in total shock if she does. I do like Scotty, though, and would never speak ill of him if he does win. I admit, he’s done a beautiful job, and understand why people like him so much.


  46. I found this link on Huffington Post. It’s a blog by a professor/cognitive scientist/personality psychologist. He gives his analysis of this season and why he thinks Scotty will win. However, the real reason why I am posting it is because of his theory about what happened with Haley. He basically stated a very similar theory that I did here – that the producers wanted two girls in the final and used psychology to get the audience to vote in greater numbers for Haley. I will let his comments speak for themselves. I don’t agree with everything he said, but I think he makes the argument about what they did to get Haley in the final three, much better than I did.



  47. Mindy – Great Article!

    It always seems to get back to how they count and screen “power” voters.

    I still have a hard time believing that TPTB at AI10 didn’t want James in the top 3. Even a diabolical and manipulative product placement expert could see that James has his own special appeal to the american idol voter.

    Compared to the thirteen from the start of the season, the Top 3 seem very bland — even Haley doesn’t add much “spice” to the mix.


  48. If you think that Haley does NOT have a recording career ahead of her, listen to this – Haley Reinhart — Earth Song (Studio version) — it may change your mind. I definitely am buying James and Haley this year. You can find it on iTUNES or YouTube (but buy it).

    I think Haley brings a bit of the leading edge of music to us on this one.


  49. I was writing this when Louise posted her links and basically I agree with idol head Ed’s conclusion although I have something that I haven’t seen mentioned that I wanted to share. It applies not only to James’ elimination but also the remaining competition.

    I noticed something interesting yesterday morning when I looked at the iTunes downloads for this week . For anyone not familiar, all of the Idol songs sold on iTunes have a customer rating system that is voluntary. If you choose to do so, you can rate the song on a one to five stars basis and leave a comment and there is a counter for the comments with a running total displayed by the star rating. I noticed that Haley’s ratings were higher than James more often than not, as well as the total number of comments she received.

    While this rating system is voluntary and isn’t a scientific poll, it shares a common feature with the AI voting system, it offers some insight to the level of passion the audience has for an artist. That is one of the two reasons why the Idol voting system remains a PITA for older voters. The Idol machine doesn’t care what we think. They want to know what the kid with braces on their teeth and $20.00 burning a hole in their pocket thinks. They buy CDs and download tracks today like we bought albums, 45s, 8 tracks and cassettes when we were their age.

    Idol also wants to know more than which one do you like the best; A, B or C? They want to see how much you like them. If you are willing to not only buy the download from iTunes, but also take some of your time to leave a comment about the song or the artist, that too is a measure of passion just like voting for two hours every week is, and it is for that reason that I am suggesting that the iTunes scores offer another way to see how the contestants are doing relative to one another. You can bet your last dollar that the Idol machine looks at this information as another way to gauge who their stars are.

    The data there is dynamic so it’s subject to constant change and James should have received his eliminated contestant bump in sales by now. Look through the numbers for all of the current contestants, week to week and compare the sales to what the judges said, when that contestant began to improve and reach their peak. I think you may be surprised.

    When I looked yesterday, there were more comments with the videos from Haley’s hometown visit than for the other contestants. James was the closest, but lagged behind at that time.

    Re: Mindy’s link:

    I believe Scotty is the likely winner as well but I disagree with the second place outcome. The very voter demographics that the writer sites as the reason for a Scotty / Lauren one two finish are the reason that I think it will not happen that way. Even though Scotty is more traditional country and Lauren is more on the pop side of country, they are still more likely to split votes than any other pairing in the top three.

    The other ways to pair the top three would be two teenagers and Haley, or two females and Scotty, two Southerners and Haley and as already mentioned two country singers plus Haley. I think the final grouping of two country singers rules the day. It appears that Scotty is the stronger of the Country contestants so he beats out Lauren for the top two and I think Haley is already ahead of Lauren in the voting and that is what accounts for the negative treatment of her, so she beats Lauren into the top two. The country vote would come together for the finale and Scotty takes the confetti bath and Vonnie wins two years in a row.

    There are a few shoes yet to drop. The judge’s song choices are out and, of course, Haley has the much harder song to sing and Lauren has a song used in by inspirational speakers for years. I haven’t seen Jimmy’s choices if they are out, so that’s a wild card and the kids could make a bad choice themselves.


  50. Hello Gene. You have shared some great wisdom in this post.

    What’s a PITA?


  51. Thank you Darlene.

    Maybe PITA was too crude an expression to use but it is short for Pain In The ***

    or a handy piece of circular flat bread most often associated with middle eastern cuisine.

    I haven’t given up on Haley, BTW, I just think she has an uphill battle for the win.


  52. Gene W,

    WooHoo!!! I’d be honored to participate in the confetti bath two years in a row!!!

    Jeepies, that would leave me with two awards for the season..my coveted “Almost Horseshoe Award” and “The Confetti Bath Award”.

    See me? I’m doing my happy dance!!! 🙂

    Must say you used some very logical thinking on the reasons why James may have gotten voted off…you are one smart cookie, ya know that? 🙂

    What songs have been picked for these guys so far?


  53. Gene,

    Thanks for sharing your the info about ITune downloads. I don’t do that, so that’s something I haven’t paid attention to, but it makes perfect sense. I’m pleased to learn that Haley is doing so well there. Even though I have not expected her to win, I see that anything is possible if she is appealing to lots of young voters. Now that James is gone, I’d love to see the final two be Scotty & Haley. In my opinion, Scotty doesn’t need to win because it seems he’s sure to have a successful career ahead. Haley needs the win more. It will be very interesting to see what they sing this week–and if they choose a good song for themselves. I can’t wait for Wednesday night–it should be a very good show!

    Vonnie’s right–you’re one smart guy! I liked your analysis of the conspiracy theory, etc.


  54. Thanks, Gene. I did not think that PITA was the flat, circular middle Eastern bread because it was capitalized.

    It’s a great acronym.


  55. I saw that Randy was interviewed on The View this morning and said that it is “a boy’s to lose.” He thinks that Scotty and Lauren are running ahead because they’ve never been in the bottom two. But he’s wrong about that. This show is really pushing Lauren in any way they can!!! I wish they’d give Haley the credit she deserves.


  56. Vonnie,
    I see you dancing there. You better start making plans for your trophy room.
    That is a hilarious post!!! I sure have missed you.

    Actually I think James did pretty well for himself. He gained national recognition and I think he will have made $150,000.00 by the end of the tour. He could easily get a recording contract; several have from forth place. He also attracted the attention of Daughtry’s producer who gave him some very good, fact based advice.

    I have to give you credit, you have been on the Scotty bandwagon longer than anyone else and I believe that you had Haley on your like list before she sold me on herself.

    I have no idea about song choices this week but I saw Haley jamming with her family band at her Idol home coming concert and one of the songs they did was an old favorite of mine, the blues standard “Sweet Home Chicago.” Pretty good stuff and it would rock the Idol house for sure.

    The songs they choose will probably be songs they know well from before their Idol days that they are comfortable performing and also one that balances the tempos of the other two songs. Haley probably has more depth in that area than the other two, but I really don’t know much about their pre Idol days.

    The judge’s song choices were reveled at the homecomings and can be seen here.


    There are other versions of the last two songs but these came up in my search so i went with them. Scotty’s and Lauren’s are pretty solidly up their alley but Haley’s has a few land mines in it. There are some off color lyrics, at least for the Idol “family” audience and it could turn into a scream fest if she’s not careful. It won’t help her in the clean cut all American kid race, compared to the song choices for Scotty and Lauren.


  57. Gene,

    I e-mailed MCL over the weekend with the judge’s picks for the top three. She e-mailed back to let me know that she would be putting up a blog, but I see that it’s not up yet. I am glad that you revealed the songs.

    I do think that Alanis Morissette song could pose some problems for Haley. It’s not a real singer’s song and the melody isn’t great. Then there is the language.

    The reason I posted the link to that article was to get your reaction to the whole Haley discussion we were having. The professor who wrote this gave his detailed analysis of what TPTB did to get Haley through to the top three and why.

    Suffice it to say that I do not necessarily agree with everything he said. Pia was one of the best singers and James certainly was right up there, but I don’t think that Jacob really got it together. I also too issue with his argument that James’ Asperger’s syndrome made him different and therefore not appealing enough. I actually responded to his blog and said that if James’ disability was a problem for viewers, then he would not have gotten to top four.

    It seems to be convenient for many to downplay Scotty’s strengths. I also addressed this in my response to the article. I think that Scotty has a truly amazing voice, a God given gift. He has poise and maturity beyond his years and real charisma and charm. He was born to be a performer. The only comment from Jennifer that I thought was honest and real, was when she told Scotty that he was comfortable in his own skin. I think that’s really a huge part of his appeal.

    I can’t say that Scotty was my favorite from the beginning, because I didn’t have one. This is the first time that I didn’t have one special favorite. I liked a few people right from the start. I think Pia would have become my favorite if she had stayed longer. I was right not to get too emotionally invested in her. I had a feeling she wouldn’t go all the way, but I did think she could go to at least top four.

    I loved Scotty’s voice the moment I heard it. However, not being a country music fan, I didn’t immediately embrace him. I have said before that I think he was my favorite before I said it here for all to read. I was still struggling with the fact that he was a country singer. It’s worth saying that I didn’t even like Carrie Underwood.

    When Scotty sang “You’ve Got a Friend”, and I teared up on the first few notes, that’s when I knew he had me. That was the first time I have cried this season.

    I am still taking nothing for granted here. I want Scotty to win, but I know this show too well to ever think that anything is for sure. The hate is sure spreading online towards Scotty and that’s because he is perceived to be the favorite. That is the one thing I hate about this part of the Idol season. I have to also say that a lot of it is coming from the Haley fans. This is going to get really ugly.


  58. I think that sometimes people get so caught up in the show that they don’t actually hear the contestants. Even those with a qualified ear for music. James was a good performer but I found his vocal skills lacking. There were others that were eliminated before James that I found to be more skilled vocally. There were times when James sang that I had to change the channel. He butchered Uprising one of my favorite songs. I normally listen to Idol and not watch it as I am usually busy in another room. It gives you a whole other perspective on the contestants. You are no longer drawn in by flash and no substance or put off by quirky eyebrows. You just hear The Voice. Oh wait…didn’t they make a show about that? It is true though you get a whole different perspective when you just listen to the voice. Play back some of Jame’s performances on YouTube and close your eyes and just listen. Some of them are pretty bad.


  59. Wow! I just had to come back here to let everyone know that Nigel has given an interview in which he discusses the issue of producer manipulation on the show. He made some very interesting comments, but I copied and pasted this one part because I think it’s significant. This was posted on MJ’s blog.

    “I’m sorry to have lost James. He was one of my personal favorites. Any one of this Top 10 could have worked well in the Top 2. This season has been remarkable with talent. I would have loved to have seen Casey in there, Pia in there. And I keep reading these tweets saying I manipulated the show to lose James. You silly buggers. Why on earth would I want to lose James?!?!

    Some fans believe the producers are throwing Haley under the bus. What about that?

    I just don’t get it. Unless I’m really Machiavellian and I’m doing it from this reverse psychological method, which I don’t even know about because it’s my alter ego doing it. Haley has been one of the few that the judges have had harsh words for – but don’t forget that the judges know that her second song will be fantastic because they’ve watched the dress rehearsal. So I think maybe they know they can be tough on the first song because the second one is a wow moment. There’s something about that comeback she’s done the last two weeks that generates incredible votes. The fact is we’re much more, if you like, manipulative on “SYTYCD” than on “Idol,” because on “Dance” you give us the bottom three and we make the decision who goes home. Which is a format change I’d like to see on “Idol” to be quite frank with you.”

    I have been saying exactly what Nigel said about Haley, in particular the issue of the judges seeing the dress rehearsals and knowing how she did beforehand.

    So what do you think everyone? Is this just more spin from the master?


  60. Louise,
    Thank you for the kind comment.

    I found the iTunes ratings to be very surprising myself. I fully expected to see James blowing the others away given the out pouring of support for him since he was eliminated.

    Closely behind those things that you can’t put a value on like life, love or family are some things that we tend to place a high value on; time and money. To do well in the iTunes data requires an expenditure of both time and money. I had never thought about comparing the contestants there before this week when I noticed Haley had a fairly high number of reviews so I compared this weeks data for all of them and let it rest. I couldn’t stand it for long so I ended up comparing the whole season.

    There are occasions when they all did well, but her results were the most surprisingly high throughout the post Pia period. I found it to be reassuring that she may have a better chance than I thought, but I still think they are trying to run her off.


  61. Gene w,

    “I have to give you credit, you have been on the Scotty bandwagon longer than anyone else and I believe that you had Haley on your like list before she sold me on herself.”

    Awwwww Garsh…!!! (That’s my Dopey from the seven dwarfs impersonation; blushing and all) 🙂


  62. Mindy,

    I have a huge feeling this is going to get ugly as well. I’m on the Haley bandwagon now, and would love to see her win. But I also think it would be a breath of fresh air to see a 17 year old boy, who loves to sing Country music, is so talented, and has an endearing personality, win this year. I know both you and I didn’t get that David A. win we wanted, but perhaps you and Vonnie will get your wish this year!


  63. Anita,

    Your so sweet! I love what you said about Scotty!

    “But I also think it would be a breath of fresh air to see a 17 year old boy, who loves to sing Country music, is so talented, and has an endearing personality, win this year.”

    I really want him to win!

    Plus, I’m already working on my acceptance speech for the illustrious “Confetti Bath Award”.


  64. Hi Mindy,
    My long post above started out to be a response to your post regarding the article you linked. I didn’t find the guys argument very compelling and, like you, found his remarks about people not voting for James because of his medical issues to be revolting, elitist remarks. What he is trying to do is pass off his thinking and motivations as ours.

    The reason that I don’t buy the author’s reverse phycology argument is because historically it only tends to work for a short time before voters begin to fall away believing the judges must be right that there really is something wrong with this singer. Or the judges keep poking at the contestant over several weeks until they crack and start talking back or not performing as well. This gets them voted off rather than voted for. It happened to Allison and it happened to Siobhan. If this were the only time that they had given Haley harsh criticism in the face of a good performance, then his argument might work. I’m not saying that Haley’s fans didn’t rally for her this week; I’m saying that I don’t believe the Idol machine made it happen on purpose as the author contends. Her fans rallied for at least three reasons; 1) it was the cut for the top three, the second most important vote of the year, 2) Lauren was in the bottom two so her fans would be voting extra heavily and Haley’s fans had to counter that, and 3) the judges treated her unfairly compared to the other contestants. My guess is that James’ fans either failed to take these things into account or they gave it all they had and it wasn’t enough.

    I have also seen Nigel’s interview, and if you think about it, what he said doesn’t make sense. I agree with his premise that the show wasn’t trying to run James off but look at the second question again.

    ”Some fans believe the producers are throwing Haley under the bus. What about that?”

    “I just don’t get it. Unless I’m really Machiavellian and I’m doing it from this reverse psychological method…”

    The whole reverse psychology theory was where they supposedly were using Haley to throw James UTB, not the method for running Haley off. It goes like this; “Have the judges make Haley look bad so that it makes Harley’s fans mad so they vote heavily for her and put her into the top three and James is voted off the island. There is no reverse philology argument for throwing her under the bus. It’s simple: The Judges tell her and only her she is terrible, America believes it and finds something else to do with their two hours. The reverse phycology argument is supposed to benefit Haley not throw her under the bus. So Nigel is saying the opposite of what you said regarding Haley.

    I think we have known since Paula’s remarks a few years ago that at least some of the judges’ comments are the result of dress rehearsals rather than the show we see on TV. Steven Tyler’s recent interview with Ryan alludes to this as well. I don’t know why they find it so hard to be honest about the process. There are too many eyes on them these days to get by with the old tricks they have been using. It wouldn’t hurt my feelings if they had a disclaimer at the beginning of the show that said “the judges’ comments to contestants may be the result of the live performance, their dress rehearsal or a combination of the two.”

    I haven’t seen the negative or hateful remarks about Scotty that you referenced but as you know, I have nothing against him. I think he needs a little polish, but that is true of all three of them and to be expected. Like you, I think his voice is a gift from God. Any one of these remaining contestants would make a very good American Idol and I think all of them can find a decent career no matter how they finish from this point. I don’t know why anyone would want to say anything bad about any of them. That’s a shame.


  65. Vonnie,

    You want Scotty to win? No, really?
    Hee, Hee, Hee!!!! No matter who wins, I’d still love to read your acceptance speech!
    Your sense of humor is still in fine form I see!


  66. Gene,

    You don’t read the hateful things about Scotty because you don’t go to MJ’s blog and read the comments. Although I will say that Scotty fans are coming to his defense there. Also, on Michael Slezak’s TVline site, that is where I think it’s the worst. Those who love Haley are hating on Scotty so much that it’s scary. I made two comments telling some of them off in the strongest terms. Slezak gets a little histrionic at this time of every Idol season and his “save the growler” mantra and lack of enthusiasm for Scotty, have kind of morphed into this hatefest. I decided to stop going there, because I simply cannot read that kind of vitriol.

    The thing I need to do is stay here and avoid most of these sites like the plague. I want to be clear that there is a great deal of support for Scotty online, but because he has been touted as the odds-on favorite, there are some who feel the need to trash him. It is a shame and reflects on them.

    I feel that the top three are all very deserving. I will be fine no matter who wins. If Scotty does win, then I will be over the moon. If not, I know that he will still have a great career. Randy Jackson has also come out and said that it’s the boy’s to lose! That was also on MJ’s blog. So that will get people all riled up.

    As far as what is going on with the producers and their motive regarding Haley, I am just going to let it go at this point. The fact that Nigel is even addressing this at all, tells me that they are feeling some heat from what has happened on the show. At least we do know that the judges see the dress rehearsals and can form their opinions in advance. I do think that Randy is not supporting Haley. He doesn’t like her and I didn’t need to hear that little video clip that Slezak so kindly managed to get out there, to know it. Whatever their agenda, Haley is in the top three and has a some great support.


    You are such a sweet thing! Your kindness comes out in all of your comments. I am happy that you have found someone to champion, after your sadness at Jacob leaving. Cheer your heart out!

    Thanks for the generous spirit and the love for Scotty, too. These are all great kids and very deserving.


  67. Anita,

    Haha! Was I being too subtle?
    I reaaaalllyyy want Scotty to win!!!

    But I should say I am just happy he is in the top 3 and will be happy with who ever wins…I would prefer it to be Scotty or Haley, but I will give Wittle Wauren credit, she can sing, and believe it or not she’s starting to grow on me!!!

    Just for you I will deliver my “Confetti Bath” acceptance speech win or lose! 🙂


  68. “Just for you I will deliver my “Confetti Bath” acceptance speech win or lose!”

    Bring your horseshoe!


  69. Gene,

    What did you think of that interview? Obviously I thought it was interesting enough since I linked it. I thought he was quite forthcoming. It also explained that thoroughly befuddled look on his face. I think he said he sometimes was at a loss on live TV thinking about the contestant, the cameras, etc. He thinks he’ll be more used to it by next year.


  70. Mindy,

    Thank you so much! I’ve never met you face to face, but I consider you a friend.
    I don’t ever leave a comment on MJ’s Blog, even though I’m a frequent reader. MJ always has the kindest things to say about David Archuleta, which I greatly appreciate. But, she can also be very brash about her feelings of others, which really turns me off. How could she be so nasty about Scotty singing “Where Were You When The World Stopped Turning”? It was Inspirational Week, and that song happens to really touch his heart, so he chose to perform it. Sometimes, people just don’t make any sense. I’m going to have to download Scotty’s studio version of this song on ITunes!


  71. Hi Jessica,
    I’m sorry I didn’t mention it before but it slipped my mind. Thank you for posting the Steven Tyler interview.

    I found his comments to be interesting, especially what he said regarding Haley’s “Earth Song.” Basically he said they had already decided that they didn’t like the song because it wasn’t a well known hit. After she sang the song and “delivered it like the blue plate special” he realized, as a singer that singing was the most important aspect of the performance they should be judging. He said that Idol had a different agenda which included the song sounding like a hit. It was also interesting that he noted that while Randy could sing, he wasn’t a singer.

    He also made some interesting comments about the makeup of the top four when Ryan asked if they were the right ones. He can be a little sketchy but he said that he liked the ones with character and called Naima, Casey and Haley by name. He later mentioned Lauren warmly.

    Another point he made in the interview was that it was difficult to hear the performers while sitting at the judges table so at some point they installed a speaker on the judges table so they could hear better.

    When ask why he would want to be a judge on Idol he said that the world of music these kids are entering is different from where he first paid his due playing clubs and that some kids had to pay club owners to let their band play there. I have to admit that I have never heard of that practice. His goal was to help these young people be heard.

    There is more to this interesting interview than what Imentioned here. I recommend to anyone who hasn’t done so already to follow the link that Jessica provided above and check it out.


  72. Jessica,
    I also read your post about your special needs child. I believe these kids are given to special people that have a gift to nurture them and that you are such a person.

    I am sorry to hear of your difficulties but hopefully they will seem small one day in comparison to the joy your son will bring you in his life time.

    You are right that James seems like a well adjusted and decent young man. I was impressed by his strong bond with his wife and child and his identifying himself as married and a family man. He has good character and that is a strong reflection of his parents imprint on him.

    You might consider copying all of James performance’s that you can on a DVD and save it as an inspiration to your son some day in the future if he’s feeling like he “can’t” because of his conditions. It might be good for him to see someone in similar circumstances to his own that “can”, even if his interest are different than James’ .

    God bless you and your son.


  73. Haley stinks! Lauren and Scotty have a better “people” appeal. Although they all have good voices, none of them can take a song and make it their own the way James can. He’s taken great songs and made them even better! Every time he performed, it was like being at a concert. I only watched Idol because of James, and have absolutely NO interest in it anymore. He’s way too talented to be voted off. To that person who complained about the judges not being honest with James, you’re crazy. They told him how great he was, because that was the truth!


  74. Louise, thanks for the link to the foxesonidol article. It is well-written & thoughtful.

    Debbie, I am heartbroken that James was voted off too. But I don’t think it’s fair to say that Haley “stinks” because she doesn’t. She’s a very talented singer. As a singer myself with significant performance anxiety issues, I can only sit back and marvel at the courage these performers have, all of them. They are not just in front of a huge crowd, they are in front of millions nationally. I don’t know how they even get one note out of their mouths, let alone entire songs. This year was a great year; there was an amazing amount of talent. Unfortunately, someone had to leave & in this case it was James.

    In many ways, James is better off being where he is. He will not be shackled to Idol. Did you see the performance videos from Santa Cruz? His love for music and his love for his hometown fans is amazing. I am absolutely looking forward to seeing him in Charlotte, NC (7/28). But I am looking forward to seeing the other folks too.

    Hope this helps.


  75. Gene (and others) might be interested in reading this article about the most popular downloads . . .



  76. Thanks so much for posting the link Louise.

    How cool is that? I’m glad Idolheaded took the ball and ran with it because I kept wanting to go back to the iTunes data and study it some more, but couldn’t find the time. I’m surprised at Pia’s low showing, but she did leave pretty early.

    I had been hoping against all common sense for a James and Haley finale since they made it into the top five and it looks like it may not have been as crazy as I first thought. You can see where James peaked too early and where Haley began to come on strong. I didn’t bother to take notes as I looked through the ratings but it seems to pretty much as I thought.

    I don’t read Ed’s page very often but I looked at the link for his article that you posted yesterday and now this one, I may have to check him out more often.

    Ed should look at video download counters and ratings and see what that looks like. I know that when I looked briefly at the home coming video, Haley’s count was higher than the rest. It may be different now.


  77. Yes-you are right – James dropped off just as Haley started peaking. Deep in my gut, I still cannot see Lauren in the finale. She needed another year of seasoning.


  78. I don’t think any of the top three stink. I would never characterize anyone in that way. All three of these young people have worked hard to get where they are in this competition.

    I can understand being upset when one’s favorite has been voted off right before the top three. I have been there. However, taking shots at someone who has managed to get there doesn’t seem fair.

    Sorry, but the judges weren’t doing James any favors. No one is perfect. The greatest singers that ever lived, the true legends, are always striving to be better, to work harder and try to realize their full potential. The idea that any amateur on this show is perfect is simply not accurate. Feedback or constructive criticism is designed to help these contestants focus on areas where they can fine tune their vocals, enhance their performances, find new ways to approach the songs they sing. That kind of advice and knowledge is invaluable.

    The judges made the mistake of basically crowning James the winner. He certainly was a strong contender, but praising to excess while going after someone else with incessant criticism is a dangerous thing. It can create a backlash. Also, because James believed what the judges told him, he was blindsided by what happened. His reaction was painful to watch.

    Also, I strongly disagree that Scotty in particular is incapable of making a song his own. He did exactly that with “You’ve Got a Friend”. He got to the true essence of what this song is all about and told that story beautifully. It was an extraordinary moment. As far as I am concerned, he didn’t get nearly the credit he should have from the judges.


  79. Hi Mindy. Well-said, as always. I am fairly disheartened regarding the judging at this point. It seems to be totally manipulated by TPTB. Why listen to it at all? So when I finally do get around to listening to the shows that I have on TiVO, I think I will just hit the all-powerful fast forward button when the judges start to speak.

    I would also say that I continue to be astounded (and appalled) at the degree of ugliness out there on the Internet. The Haley lovers have been just as obnoxious as the Scotty lovers, in particular, toward James Durbin. Lauren, for the most part, does not seem to get as much negativity thrown her way, perhaps because she’s seen as the “weaker” link in the puzzle. Who knows? But it just makes me sad and it also underscores the fact that most of the population has NO idea whatsoever what it takes to sing and to perform and how everyone of these kids is (in my opinion) beyond brave.

    I think the only way for me to watch Idol next year is to do it very superficially & analytically. I just can NOT let myself get attached to anyone again.


  80. Darlene,

    I have been thinking about you a lot since James was voted off. I wanted to give you some time to deal with it, so I gave you some space. However, you have definitely been in my thoughts.

    I don’t know if I will ever really be okay about what happened to Siobhan. Seeing her moving on and making music helps a lot. I don’t know why everyone sees Haley as a victim, as though this is happening for the first time. Siobhan had it much worse, in my opinion. The judges criticized her appearance, for heaven’s sake! There is nothing worse that you can say to a young woman than to make disparaging comments about how she looks. The last straw was the revelation by Siobhan after she was voted off, that she had to make sure to avoid any eye contact with Kara and Simon, because when she did see them, their expressions were so disapproving that it threw off her singing.

    Fortunately, it has not gotten that bad for Haley. I just really wish that her fans would stop making her a martyr. Unlike Siobhan, she is still in the competition. The excessive criticism from the judges didn’t hurt her, it helped her by creating a backlash. She stood up for herself and spoke back to the judges in an empowering way. So she is still standing! Let’s celebrate that and stop feeling sorry for her!

    Thank you for mentioned how ugly it has been getting online. That is putting it mildly. The Haley fans are motivated to stop the country duo and foil the plans of the producers. Since they see Scotty as the real favorite, much of their hate has been directed at him. I honestly don’t understand the anger from Haley fans. It’s the people who supported James who should be feeling angry and hurt. Nothing seems to appease the Haley fans. It’s like they are on a crusade. I don’t think they are doing her proud with some of their brutal comments.

    Louise is the one who told me that Lauren is the one who isn’t getting any of the hate. It’s like she has become almost invisible in the fan wars. I am guessing it’s because Scotty is seen as the bigger threat.

    This is indeed very sad. I agree with you about how hard it is to stand up there and perform for millions of people watching at home. I was a nervous wreck every time my high school choir had to perform in other schools or universities or wherever. And I was one out of so many! I could never have been a solo singer. I didn’t have it in me. I am far too shy.

    I am sure that I told you and everyone else here that I would not go through what I did with Siobhan ever again. It just took too much out of me emotionally. I am not a kid anymore and I don’t have that kind of energy to invest. I promised myself that I would not get too emotionally invested in anyone this year, no matter what. That’s how I survived Pia’s early ouster. I knew she wouldn’t make it to the finals, but I still thought she would do better than Siobhan. Silly me! Scotty is my favorite, but I am not going to be destroyed if he doesn’t win. I have put up an emotional wall to protect myself. It’s the only way I can watch this show.

    I don’t know if you read my thoughts about James, but I did not see him going at all. I never even considered the possibility. He was one that I also really liked and it was a real shock to see him voted off. I couldn’t wrap my mind around it for a few hours. That’s why I take nothing for granted and make no assumptions about who will win. Anything can happen.

    I hope you are doing better. I know it hurts every single time. It broke my heart to see James break down last week, but I do believe that things will work out for him. He will find his success!


  81. FANS: We know what happened last Wednesday with the voting and AMerican Idol, according to autismkey.com and gather.com when the order of singing was changed, the number for voting was not therefore resulting in misdirected voting. Fox, change this, fans are outraged, listen to your viewers and make this right. Bring James back for a redo.


  82. Dearest, sweet Mindy, thank you so much for your very kind thoughts. I am really OK. This is quite different than Siobhan who was so badly treated by Simon & Kara & who finished in a nebulous 6th place position. James finished in a very respectable 4th place and hopefully is now feeling better about what he accomplished; I am sure that his spectacular homecoming in Santa Cruz helped a lot. It’s interesting to contemplate the possibility that the voting was deeply flawed (imagine that LOL!!) but I doubt that TPTB will allow him to come back for a redo (although interestingly Project Runway frequently pulled stuff like that, bringing back contestants, allowing 4 people to go to Fashion Week instead of 3, etc.). I really don’t think it would be fair to James to have him come back; he would not be at his best & even the slightest flaw in his singing would be fodder for the haters. I think he should stay in Santa Cruz, rest, get ready for the Tour, carefully consider his song choices, etc. I truly truly hope that he will work on his lower voice so that it is clarified and that will help his amazing upper range to be even better than it is. And he is just such an awesome person!! I am getting a little teary-eyed thinking about him but it’s a good teary-eyed :). Can’t wait to see him live on the Tour (Charlotte 7/28!!).

    Regarding Scotty, I have always loved him. What a voice!! The first time I heard him I almost fell off my chair (really!). I did not expect that rich baritone from someone that young. Scotty is going to go far in country music; it’s what he was born to do.

    Lauren is sweet but she does not belong in the top 3 in my opinion. I am glad she is being spared at least some of the hate. But who thought Casey James would end up in 3rd? BTW, I have to say though that Casey was spectacular live but I haven’t heard anything about what he has been doing since the Tour. I’ll have to do a little research on that. I actually posted a video of him on my YouTube channel; my moniker there is JRZGRL55 if you ever want to check it out – there are 2 Siobhan videos there too.

    What is most distressing to me is the hate leveled at James & now Scotty by so-called Glamberts. But the same thing happened last year with Siobhan so I don’t know why I should be surprised. I do think Adam himself could do more (via Twitter) to quiet this down; one tweet from him saying “let’s respect all these contestants” would go a long way. But he hasn’t stepped forward & done that. I am just a bit disenchanted with him & I am not alone.

    I am also discouraged by how deeply flawed the judging appears to be this year i.e. manipulated by TPTB. I think this happened last year too. But again, why should I be surprised? It’s television.

    Finally, isn’t it great that people like you & me have the opportunity to commiserate because of MCL’s hard work in creating and maintaining this forum? Thank you, MCL!!

    OK, must get ready for the day. Thanks again for thinking of me (yes, Eeyore is my favorite Pooh character).


  83. Darlene,

    I too am becoming disenchanted with Adam! Love his voice; loved him while he was on idol, but his post idol work has been a huge disappointment for me!

    These kids work so hard to get to the place that they are on this show. We may not think some belong at the top levels, but evidently someone does and their voting has proved it.

    It is such a shame that their is so much hate being directed at these kids!

    You are such a sweetheart…I am so glad that you are going to see James on the tour!


  84. Darlene- thank you so much for your kind and thoughtful comments

    Also, I agree with you re Adam. I am extremely disappointed in his behavior lately and, in fact, he could quieten the masses as you suggested.

    He seems to be the only Idol alumnus who has become incessantly vocal about a competitor on this year’s show.

    Yes, it is true that others have their favorites but they haven’t made it a mission to actively advertise this fact.


  85. Vonnie, you are too sweet!! I really appreciate what you wrote about me. I love your comments too. I always feel at home & safe here. I can say what I think. And yes, I am ecstatic that I am going to be able to see James live. I’m also looking forward to seeing all the other folks, especially Thia (I love her voice), Naima, Pia, Paul, Karen, Jacob, Stephano & especially Casey. And of course Haley, Lauren & Scotty. Hope I haven’t forgotten anyone :).

    Regarding Adam, I went to 4 Glamnation Tour concerts last summer (Knoxville, Nashville, Philadelphia & Bethlehem PA). Adam is very good live, better than he was on the CD (it was incredibly disappointing to hear the amount of auto-tune that was used on the CD – if there was ever a singer who did not need auto-tune, it’s Adam Lambert). But in his shows he is all about the flash. I like the more stripped down “acoustic” versions of songs he has done lately, such as “Aftermath” on Idol this year. I have to say that when the day is done there is a bit of an empty feeling to his music and performances; there is a little bit too much smoke & mirrors. When I went to see Prince, I had a glimpse of what might be lacking in Adam – there’s just not that core sense of who he is and what his role in music history might be. Prince has that (& more). But perhaps Adam will mature into something with a little more substance. That would be a good thing because he is SO talented.

    MCL, I could not agree with you more. It seems to me that Adam has set himself up as some sort of ultimate expert on Idol talent. Maybe he isn’t completely cognizant of what he is doing but it is, in my opinion, not very wise of him to put himself in that position. To the best of my knowledge, Kelly Clarkson doesn’t do it, Carrie Underwood sure doesn’t do it, Jennifer Hudson doesn’t do it & David Cook doesn’t do it. Crystal Bowersox sent a supportive tweet to Casey Abrams this year, which I think was a lovely thing for her to do because it was in that stretch of time when he was in the hospital. Clay Aiken made a very ill-advised comment about Adam 2 seasons ago & I think got a lot of backlash/bad publicity as a result of that comment. I actually had an interesting thought (at least to me LOL) that maybe Adam was being ENCOURAGED by TPTB to tweet/say certain things. What makes me a little crazy is reading tweets from Glamberts admiring Adam because “he’s honest, he says what he thinks…” etc. Sometimes there is a whole lot to be said for NOT saying what you think.

    Thanks for all the wonderful feedback!


  86. Iam a 60 yr. old woman & I was appalled when JAMES DURBIN was out. What is wrong with you people ? Don’t you know how to vote? PRODUCERS should come up with a better plan , how to choose the best singer without having people vote & make mistake like when CHRIS DAUGHTRY,ADAM LAMBERT, BO BICE …please !Ask SCOTTIE to sing POP/ ROCK/METAL… & people will see him go down .The same for LAUREN who only likes country…PRODUCERS should at LEAST let JAMES sing with AEROSMITH & STEVEN TYLER ,at least don’t rob him of this dream too…I love you JAMES & you have a great future ahead of you .I will pray for you & your lovely wife & child…XOXOXO


  87. Darlene,

    Aww! Thank You!

    Got a story for ya…!!!

    Back in my hay day, when I was dating my now hubby…I sprung on him one day that we were going to DC to see Prince. Well, being the lovestruck young man that he was, he just couldn’t say no (I just added the lovestruck part) BUT anywho!, all of his friends gave him the hardest time over going to see Prince. Now this was his “Purple Rain Tour” and could not be missed by my eyes or ears!

    What a concert; 2 1/2 hours of nothing but Prince! He didn’t have an opening band, just him.

    My now hubby, sat there like a bump on a log while the rest of us Prince maniacs were screaming and jumping up and down everytime someone from the set crew came on stage! We were practicing for the real deal…!

    All of a sudden, headlights came on up on the stage, a car engine starts, and yes, you guessed it, here comes Prince in a little red corvette; well needless to say my now hubby found his legs and his voice, cause he was screaming like a girl right there beside me…!

    Prince was beyond his years as far as an entertainer and musician then and I can only imagine that he is every bit as much an entertainer now!

    Still have my VHS copy of Purple Rain!!!

    Shoo! I’m tired, that walk down memory lane bout wore me out.

    The now hubby did go back and tell all of his too cool friends that Prince was awesome!

    So yes! in other words and a much shorter version, Adam does have alot to learn; but man what a voice that guy has!!!

    My next best concert that I attended was Bryan Adams…his Reckless Tour!

    Sorry! Too much information?


  88. Darlene – I also believe that Adam received a little nudge from T.P.T.B. And why am I not surprised?

    However, in my mind, the show is over, the winner has been crowned and that, as one rabbit once said, is all, folks! 🙂


  89. It looks like there is another Louise posting here. That wasn’t my post above which begins with “I am a 60 yr old woman.”
    I’m the one who posts here fairly frequently. Maybe I’ll need to change my posting name to Louise#1!!!


  90. I just read Darlene’s comments about Adam’s music in comparison to Prince’s music. I find that really interesting, because I was never a big Adam fan because I always sensed that he was more of a “performer” than a “rocker” or a “singer.” Darlene wrote, ” I have to say that when the day is done there is a bit of an empty feeling to his music and performances; there is a little bit too much smoke & mirrors.” That comment makes me feel like my instincts about him may have been right after all.


  91. Definitely not TMI, Vonnie. Great Prince story. I have been to a lot of good concerts over my years; I would rank Prince in my top 3 – the other 2 would be Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers (1995) and a very close tie between Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band (2001) and Billy Joel (2002) – Interestingly, Billy was half of the Piano Man Tour & I ended up liking him more than Elton John, although Sir Elton was amazing too and I’m glad I got to see him.

    Louise #1 :), thanks for your thoughts. I don’t want to seem like I’m coming down too hard on Adam. I still love him & I still think he’s got an amazing voice. He loves to perform. But I do think there is a bit of a disconnect between what we see & hear & what Adam really is (or isn’t). I would still go see him again if he were passing by this way. And he does do some cool charity work raising money for schools (Glam-a-Classroom at DonorsChoose.org) and pure water (http://mycharitywater.org/p/campaign?campaign_id=12617). But I do think he’s let down some of his fans during this Idol season.

    Thanks, everyone!


  92. Louise#1,

    I knew that wasn’t you! You are such a dear sweet presence on this site. I guess it’s best to change your screen name a little, so everyone is sure who is our lovely Louise! Yes, you did have good instincts about Adam way back when. I do remember what you said. I was so caught up in my love for his voice that I didn’t question where he might go or what he might do after Idol. Always trust your instincts, that’s what I have learned in life!


    You are so special to me! What can I say! You have so much wisdom and knowledge about singing. I cannot imagine this site without you.

    I am disappointed that Adam has participated in this craziness that goes on near the end of every Idol season. Yes, he could do a lot of good if he would just say that he wishes all three good luck and supports everyone!

    I am getting very unnerved by the hate directed at Scotty. I think he is getting it more than Lauren because he is perceived to be the likely winner. It’s getting out of hand.

    I have been quite disappointed with the direction in which Adam has gone since Idol. I don’t think he is convincing with all the smoke and mirrors stuff. He is so much better when he is just singing in that stripped down acoustic way and that voice can shine so beautifully. I always said that it was his decision and his career, but I cannot deny that I feel let down. Now to see him get in the middle of the noise right now, is even more disconcerting. He should know better.

    There are Haley fans online who are hating on Scotty in a really terrible way. I am not putting all Haley fans in that group, but there are certainly a number of them who have kind of gone off the rails.

    Michael Slezak did his weekly Idoloonies and had a lot to say about what happened last week. His guest was Melinda Doolittle. It was great to hear from her and find out what’s going on in her career. However, I was a bit disapppointed that she basically agreed with everything that Slezak said. He graciously decided not to hold it against Scotty for singing that 9/11 song. He is giving him the benefit of the doubt, that it came from his heart and was genuine! Good grief! I cannot believe that people are questioning his sincerity in singing that song! To even imply that he would manipulate people’s feelings about 9/11 to further his chances on the show, is a very serious accusation. Why do people have to read so much into the motives of these kids and what they sing?

    Michael Slezak has gotten people pretty riled up about Haley. I guess he is determined to make her the victim here, even though James was the one voted off. It’s funny, but when someone gets voted off, then he suddenly stops criticizing them. He was going after James every week for being off pitch and the judges not calling him on it. He is quite the hypocrite! He writes well with a nice, witty turn of a phrase. However when we get to the end of an Idol season and he has his special favorite, then he just goes absolutely nutty!


  93. Louise#1,

    That’s so funny…I thought that you had been to visit the Baldwin sisters, and got into “Papa’s recipe”!!! That was so out of character for you!


    Welcome!!! 🙂

    I think James will be more than okay, he is a charming young man who I have no doubts will have a great career. He has a lovely family who support him.


  94. Thanks for your very kind comments, Mindy. Much appreciated!

    And Vonnie, I laughed out loud at your comment about Papa’s recipe! You’re hilarious!

    Here’s hoping for a great show tonight. I hope our boy Scotty does a great job!!! And I wish the others well too (especially Haley!). It pains me to hear that her fans are being so hateful and that people are writing bad things about Scotty. He has to be the most likeable, down-to-earth contestant I’ve ever seen on Idol. I have a feeling that he must be feeling terrible if he knows this behavior is happening.


  95. Rosanne,

    Wasn’t it Porky Pig who said “That’s all folks”? LoL!! I’m trying to lighten the mood!


  96. Wait – maybe you’re right Anita !!!!!!! Lolol


  97. To be honest, although I liked six of the contestants (a record for me), but then it was the most talented year ever for idol, James was the only performer that I absolutely waited for. I really do believe the kid is going to do extremely well.


  98. I still miss James every Wednesday night. He was the most fun thing about watching the show. He has a gorgeous voice, is so charismatic and just darn fun to watch. I really hope we get a CD from him and that he is well promoted. I will follow his career and support him.
    After he left the show it was like the air was sucked out of the room. The top 3 and top 2 nights were simply dull. No fireworks, no power, no wow moments for me. But the finale was a hoot. So many great performances. My favorite was James with Judas Priest. What a trip! Love that boy.


  99. Yep – cannot wait to see the concert tour – I thing the Top 11 will give a great show.


  100. Nice to see some James Durbin fans on here showing him the love. Thank you and welcome!!!


  101. I just came up on this blog now. Interesting. I’m just glad that James’ career appears to be headed for good things. The judges in fact, did give James a little criticism here and there, but always made clear they liked his performances. I do think their criticism of Haley helped–not hurt Haley. In fact,telling James Idol was ‘his to lose’ was an outrage, in my mind. Scotty was always the front runner, by far. So the dynamic making James overconfident while giving criticism to haley, really put a fire under the belly of Haley fans. I think it would’ve been good for James to have been in the bottom 3 at some point, because then his fans would’ve gotten fired up. I actually thought he was brilliant on his last night and was only got the hint of lack of support when I saw some of the poll responses on Idol. I think James’ issue was that he was almost as good his first night as his last. To me that just shows what an amazing artist and performer he is., but not great for voting momentum. I think he’s a total rock star and look forward to his music!


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