Vocal Masterclass Discussion For American Idol Season 12 Auditions: Charlotte North Carolina

20130116-140645.jpgSo, what did you think of last week’s premiere shows for American Idol Season 12? Not too shabby, I must say.

So far, the judging panel exhibits a high degree of spark and chemistry which I hope will translate to the singers without obliterating the focus on their singing talent. Because, after all, this is a singing competition, not a judging competition.

The Voice has managed to balance this key element extremely well in Season 3 and I hope American Idol, as well as The X Factor, have been taking notes.

Their NBC competition found their groove in Season 3 and, having accomplished that, now Fox needs to take heed of what works for them, perhaps, tweaking their production elements here and there and everywhere. It’s about the singers – on stage, not behind the judges’ table.

However, not before we are exposed to the famous diva brawl between Mariah and Nikki which apparently takes place on this Wednesday’s show in Charlotte at 8:00 Eastern. Oy vey, help me.

The show also airs on Thursday at 8:00 Eastern.

I will provide live updates this week, which you will find at the end of this article.

Also, if you haven’t done so, please join my Facebook Page for the latest updates.

Live Update:

  • 8:06 P.M. 28-year-old fashion designer, Naomi Harris, sings Respect with little respect for vocal technique and melodic cohesion. Enough said. Nikki nicknames her “Omi”. I don’t know why! Because she can, I guess.
  • Nikki is quite the lightbulb on that panel. More wattage than the other three put together. But, I worry if her mouth will get her into trouble once the live shows start.
  • 8:15 P.M. 20-year-old Joel has a bit of a muffled sound to his speaking voice so I am interested to hear him sing. He sings Feelin’ Good lying down because he saw Andrea Bocelli sing a song in a reclined position for better effect. It worked for Andrea but not for Joel. It was a sustained muffled mess.
  • 8:18 P.M. 27-year-old Brian Rittenberry from Georgia has endured a difficult journey watching his wife beat cancer. And he performs a powerful version of Let It Be. Very likeable but not a lot of star power. He advances to Hollywood.
  • 8:27 P.M. 29-year-old Jimmy Smith has been influenced by judge Keith Urban.. He sings a decent version of God Bless The Broken Road.
    He has a great personality and presence and should go far.
  • 8:31 P.M. A few extremely gifted female singers are quickly featured. Loved Haley and the young lady before her whose name I missed.
  • 8:38 P.M. Matthew Muse from Florence SC is a country artist. He sings Brad Paisley’s When I Hear Where I’m Going but his voice has no sense of direction at all. Oh boy. Another wasted moment when we could have heard a legitimate singer.
  • 8:41P.M. 16-year-old Isabel Gonzalez was surprised by Randy Jackson’s visit while at school. She was nominated by her aunt to be on American Idol. And she does enormous justice to a Sam Cooke number. Her voice has clarity and soul. She is inherently musical. Off to Hollywood she goes! And Mariah calls her a star. Strong start for this young lady.
  • 8:51 P.M. 21-year-old Taisha from Concord North Carolina sings in a rock band. Cool. A rocker chick! And she performs Johnny Cash’s Folsom Prison Blues followed by an Alanis Morrisette song. Very diverse young lady. She gets two yeses and two nos and, because Keith gets the deciding vote today, she squeaks off to Hollywood. I likes her.
  • 8:55 P.M. Lots of quick flashes before we are faced with the infamous Nikki – Mariah brawl. And Summer Cunningham is caught in the middle of it. The judges seem conflicted over her. Weird. And tired. And tentative. So weird. Then Nikki starts accusing Mariah and Randy of being too hard on her. Weird. Somehow she gets to Hollywood. Nikki walks out. Why? I don’t know but it is extremely unprofessional and ratings just went up for The Voice and it hasn’t even aired yet. Cue eye roll from MCL
  • 9:05 P.M. Charlotte Day Two has begun.
  • 9:07 P.M. 25-year-old Brandy Alexandria Hamilton sings Etta James’ All I Could Do Was Cry. It is a pretty good vocal but she sounded nervous so her voice was unsteady but the judges loved her. Off to Hollywood she goes but not before she begs the judges not to fight anymore because it makes her sad. Couldn’t have said it better myself.
  • 9:10 P.M. 22-year-old Ashley Smith is up next. Nikki nicknamed her Blondie. Boy she is so into marketing and branding these contestants. Ashley sings a Carrie Underwood number better than Carrie herself. I love this girl’s style – she has a natural ability and so musical. A black girl singing country is a nice change.
  • 9:20 P.M. We are treated to some more quick collage moments and more nicknames by Nikki.
  • 9:21 P.M. 22-year-old Janelle Arthur gives an outstanding country performance. Her voice has strong focus and sustainability. Lovely to listen to and watch. She gets her golden ticket to Hollywood.
  • 9:29 P.M. A few quick peeks at the poor auditions before we meet 27-year-old street singer, Rodney Barber. He gives a beautiful perfomance of I’ll Be. He was a homeless person for a few years so this performance was very moving. He gets a well-deserved ticket to Hollywood.
  • 9:33 P.M. 22-year-old Season 11 contestant, Candace Glover, is back with a vengeance. Tell me again why she was cut last year? She is so darn good it is ridiculous. The judges are absolutely head over heels in love with her and she gets a standing ovation. The best they heard all season.
  • 9:41 P.M. Ja Bria Barber from Clover North Carolina sings Bonnie Raitt’s version of Pride And Joy and she is extremely good. Lots of great female vocalists in Charlotte.
  • 9:46 P.M. It’s time for a joke contestant in the form of 28-year-old Brad Harris. He sings A Whole New World and it is indeed from another world. OY! No Hollywood for him. What a surprise! ( insert sarcasm – lots of it!)
  • 9:51 P.M. Almost finished with Charlotte when we are introduced to 26-year-old Seretha and her gorgeous 3-year-old daughter who loves Nikki.. Her boyfriend, who is her daughter’s father, nearly died from a car accident. Seretha sings The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air followed by How Can I Live Without You . She is an extremely gifted singer and the judges are clearly impressed, calling her a superstar!
  • 37 Americans receive a gold ticket in Charlotte.
  • Tomorrow they are in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. See you here, MCL peeps!
  • 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

    16 Responses to “Vocal Masterclass Discussion For American Idol Season 12 Auditions: Charlotte North Carolina”

    1. Hey Rosanne ….

      Ummm …. I dunno. I love this site … love talking with all the folks here , I’m not so sure though that I love the show so much anymore. There are some good singers there , just not over the top unique for me. And the two days of Nicky and Mariah’s pettiness is a bit more then I thought it would be and we’re just in week two. I’m just not with it. I guess I’m just tired of seeing shows on TV of very famous beautiful rich women … who have everything but just don;t know how to get a long. I’ll watch it but I’m just not expecting anything spectacular this year so it wouldn’t make a lot of sense to comment. If I do see what I think is spectacular, I’ll comment. Other then that I’ll probably just be reading.

      Love to you all


    2. Aw BrotherKarl – we will be thoroughly lost without your comments but I understand where you are coming from. But, we have to give the show a chance. I have a feeling that, at least, these judges will be more exciting to watch as an ensemble.

      However, The Voice is strong now – not yet producing superstars – but, as a show, miles above the others. And with Usher and Shakira added to the panel, it will only be better once Season 4 debuts in March.

      Should be quite the ride for singing fans.


    3. Well Rosanne, unfortunately ….I let “The Voice ” go the season before last. I’ve got my fingers crossed this season for Idol. I’m going to give it one last shot though. I’m just looking for a little bit better than “good” .. to keep me going after this season I’ve got to see “unique”. So many bring such positive attitudes here …and I don’t want to disrupt that. But I;ll be reading and watching.


    4. Too bad you let The Voice go. It was really,really good during Season 3. Great judging, great singers, wonderful camaraderie between judges and singers and mentors. And the group numbers were outstanding.

      Glad you will drop in every once in a while. And, like you, unique would be a great thing. I was dishearten to see all the guitars in these preliminary auditions. Sick of looking at that instrument!! It overshadows the VOICE.


    5. wow, i loved your blog with the live comments. i haven’t yet watched ANY of the shows, i.e, haven’t even watched last week’s yet. i’ve been really busy, and maybe i have other priorities, but now i’m thinking you’re getting me more interested. i guess i haven’t been drawn to seeing either of the two female judges and that has kept me from being excited about watching. thanks for the great post!!


    6. Thanks Hunter. Live blogging is fun and I am glad it has peaked your interest to watch the show. The auditions are in Baton Rouge tonight. 🙂


    7. Wow !!

      Absolutely loved the “live update”!! Incredible !! And my favorite of the night, Sereatha.


    8. Thanks BrotherKarl. Will do again tonight for Baton Rouge.


    9. I know how you feel brotherkarl…I haven’t heard that one person yet that has me jumping up and down…I am curious though to watch the live shows to see how the judges interact with each other…I just get the feeling from Nikki that she just isn’t going to put up with any thing that she deems direspectful, and I think Mariah has maybe fueled the fire a couple of times. But I am really enjoying Nikki and Keith, they both seem to have alot of compassion for the contestants.

      I love all of the Nick Names that Nikki gives everyone, so cute!!!


    10. I forgot about Ashley Smith…I did like her alot and Janelle Arthur…


    11. I don’t think on my feet fast enough to put this all in one post…BUT, have you noticed they are showing more girl auditions than boys…could this be the year of the girl


    12. Great job on the live blogging MCL! It’s no easy task but it’s great to have your first impressions down on paper (or on a screen as the case may be, lol).


    13. what is your ‘name’ on facebook. i couldn’t find it in search, and i couldn’t find it on this page…



    14. Hey Vonnie,

      I dunno. I have a hard time with Nikki.

      My thinking on it is …. Mariah is a very well established proven over and over again bona fide star and it seems to me that Nikki has absolutely no respect for any of it. Mariah is also much older and wiser but it doesn’t seem to matter much to Ms Nikki at all yet it should. Someone who has managed to stay where they are for as many years as Mariah has and can be able to demand the kind of salary that Mariah did and get it, you’ve got to give them credit. You can’t just blow somebody off like that as if they are just another judge. They would not have even dreamed of paying NIkki anywhere near that amount. She’s not there yet. Maybe one day but not now and I just think until she gets there she should be more respectful to someone who already is where she’d like to be one day. When she is not talking she sits and looks off into space to the side as if nothing anybody else says matters but her. And notice almost after every audition shes the first to speak out and she just goes on an on. If she didn;t have to give anybody a chance to speak, she would’nt. And watch her expressions almost every time Mariah speaks. Its almost as if she has no respect at all for anyone else’s opinion.
      Simon was like that …but then he was the producer.And then day 3 she’s walking off the stage ?? Really !! Its an opportunity of a lifetime for her and she’s treating it like its nothing. Trust. This kind of behavior will either end the show or it will be the open curtain to high classed disrespect.

      The live shows should be interesting. Something tells me that we are going to see something on TV this season on Idol that we’ve never seen before and I’m not talking about singers.


    15. Hey Brotherkarl,

      I will watch tonight and look for the things that you pointed out…I’m not much of a Mariah fan so maybe I am just not paying attention to her.

      I do feel bad for Keith being caught in between them, he really seems so kind…they need to put Randy in the middle, LOL. Keith probably drew the short straw!!!


    16. Hunter – the page is Masterclass Lady. Here is the direct link: https://www.facebook.com/TheMasterclassLady

      I have to correct and clarify this on the MCL site. Thanks for your interest. 🙂


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