Vocal Masterclass Discussion For American Idol Season XIII Top 6 Performance Show Part Two: A Little Bit Country And Rock N’ Roll

20140423-134533.jpgPicture Credit: American Idol

Poor Dexter Roberts! Suffering elimination last week before he was given the chance to jump on the Country side of this week’s theme.

Well, that’s how the cookie crumbles on this show. Anything can happen.

To be honest, I didn’t think we would see Dexter’s demise this early in the season but I guess he didn’t connect with the strong Country audience out there in TV Land.

All that being said, I thought all the singers hit their stride last week and favorably elevated their performing levels. Some of the singing still needs refinement but, all in all, the singers looked very comfortable on stage and used the performing space very well .

I wish the judges would just stop the negative commentary toward Jessica Meuse because she has improved and is blessed with a gorgeous voice. Their bias is questionable and down right rude. Their critique has to be more balanced or it will fall on deaf ears.

So, that’s my “rant of the day”. Expect more in the comments section when this show airs Wednesday, April 23rd at 8:00 PM. Hope you will join in!

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

15 Responses to “Vocal Masterclass Discussion For American Idol Season XIII Top 6 Performance Show Part Two: A Little Bit Country And Rock N’ Roll”

  1. Hi, Everyone,

    I thought I’d chime in with an idea about Sam Woolf.

    I’m in the middle of watching “20 Feet from Stardom.” Someone mentioned it last week, and thank you! It’s wonderful.

    Sting said something like this: People think you can win American Idol and become a star, but that circumvents the spiritual journey. And you can’t fake that.”

    Stevie Wonder said, “Put your spirit into your songs. Focus on the words.”

    Our beautiful (in looks and voice) Sam has so much talent, but he is shy. I don’t think he is just shy, though. To put your spirit into a song, like the great ones, you leave your soul bare for that time on stage. Sam seems to have had a tough life … his parents aren’t around. I have this feeling his is guarding the hurt in his soul, and he is not ready to feel the pain, or the joy for that matter.

    Jessica Meuse is a bit like that, too, although we saw a peek on her original song.

    It really is amazing when you see young folks like Allison Iraheta, David Archuleta, Phillip Phillips, David Cook, Adam Lambert, Candace Glover, who can strip themselves in front of America.

    It’s that connection the judges talk about. CJ has it. Jena has it. Caleb has it. I’m not sure this is something you can teach, though. People have to figure it out in their own time. Well, I hope Jessica and Sam realize that if they reveal their soft underbellies, America will love them all the more for it.

    PS — I agree with the original poster last week about Gimme Shelter. Both Lisa Fischer and Merry Clayton are drop dead stunning in that song. I don’t think I have words for Lisa Fischer’s improv with Sting in the studio. I was watching jaw dropped.

    Can’t wait til tonight!


  2. Vonnie 🎵🎼 April 23, 2014 at 8:44 pm

    Hmm! Jessica, was Keith reading your post? He Ditto’d what you said about Sam!!! 😃


  3. Vonnie 🎵🎼 April 23, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    I loved Alex’s version of Always on my mind…loved Sam’s first song and Caleb’s first song!

    That’s all I’ve got to say about that!!!


  4. Personally I love Sam’s voice. I would buy his record and he has had the most growth. Alex is current and Vonnie I will buy his Always on My Mind. Caleb and Jena sing technically perfect but do not move me. Jess is like a singing bot to me. Yep Sam is shy but he is growing before our eyes. CJ IMO needs to go. I fear Alex will. 😦


  5. Jessica – what a wonderful comment. Methinks the judges are turkey lurking on here. Thanks Jessica. Very well put!! 🙂


  6. These singers are actually surprising me. They must have had a group hug or something this week. My Vocal Masterclass article will be online tomorrow. Thanks everyone.


  7. interesting comments jessica.


  8. oops, that went before it should have. i *could* say, jessica, i feel *your* soul. 🙂


  9. i haven’t yet finished watching, i just had to come on the computer to tell my sister about grumpy cat being on. my sister is ‘grumpy cat’ crazy. now *that* special guest was actually a treat rather than all that weird stuff of the last couple weeks. i wonder if any of you think so, i loved it. 🙂


  10. from what i’ve seen so far, my favorite was jessica’s jefferson airplane song, i *loved* it, and i *loved* caleb’s second song. it’s interesting, i didn’t even know caleb’s second song and yet i connected more to it than probably anything he has ever sung. and once again…the judges totally disagree with me. very interesting to me, they thought his second song just didn’t have it. i mean, i might even consider downloading it from itunes.


  11. Hi, Jessica,
    I agree with your comments about Sam. I remember that he mentioned in a much earlier show that his mother “left.” I have a feeling this is where Sam’s pain is coming from. I really love this kid and love his voice!!!

    I also saw 20 Feet from Stardom about a month ago and have been recommending it to friends–it was wonderful!!!!!!! I loved Lisa Fisher’s performance with Mick Jagger. But all of the women were wonderful.

    I missed most of AI tonight, so I’ll have to watch it tomorrow before I can comment.


  12. I’m usually a fan of the guitar, but I think Jessica expresses herself soooo much better when she is not playing. I think it allows her upper body to move with the lyrics, not just rhythm. In fact, I disagree with Harry, I think. She HAS the rhythm. She needs to express the emotional arc of the song. She can do this without playing. In Jolene, I liked how she played, then stopped in the middle.

    Sam was so much better. Maybe he had more time to practice after turning 18? Maybe he isn’t required to go to class now?

    Jena was stunning in both songs. I got goosies too in the second. I thought Barracuda actually showed her one weekness, her lower register. I wish she could’ve belted the lower octave barracuda line.

    Caleb was great, as usual. I wish we had been able to see this snafu everyone in theater got such kicks about. He is so talented that in a week he can learn two songs and embody them so much that he can play on stage with the band and back up singers.

    Alex. I always loved Alex. Someone got it right on “Animal.” He sounded breathless. I think he just needs to get used to up-tempo songs and concentrate less on the lyrics than the breathing. Fast songs aren’t about the lyrics as much as on ballads. And speaking of ballads … “Always on My Mind”? So pretty.


  13. And thank you for everyone’s thoughts about my first post.


  14. Vonnie 🎵🎼 April 24, 2014 at 8:44 am

    I agree with Harry on Jena! Her second song was not pleasant to my ears nor her first! There is something about her higher register that I find very unpleasant! But JLo has her for the win!!!

    I also agree with the thoughts on Jessica, lights on, nobody at home! She sang both of her songs really well but showed no emotion through them!

    Caleb my friend, I love your voice, but was really hoping to see another lane for you…Somebody help me out, who does he sound like???

    CJ, love his sweet personality, I wonder if he reads notes! I think an understanding of the scale would help him with stay in tune! He has the voice just needs to learn how to use it!

    Alex, I love your version of Always on my Mind, I thought it was beautiful…your Neon Trees song was a little fast I thought, I wish you would have slowed it down a bit and had fun with the lyric!

    Sam, I loved your first song, really wished you would have chosen a different country song! But your voice is amazing!


  15. I have seen Linda Eder, my favorite performer, many times in concert and countess times on youtube. At one of her concerts she prefaced her song – Stormy Weather – by saying when she won Starsearch and went out to perform, she thought she could sing the blues. She said in reality to sing most any song a person needs certain amount of life experience. For her it was well into her forties.

    No one on this show seems to have passed puberty. I sincerely doubt the people left have had the kind of life experiences necessary for the songs they sing for true interpretation much less in 1 minute 45 seconds. Rock is different because it isn’t about lyrics but about a driving beat. A person pretty much has to sustain the driving beat and everything else is incidental. There isn’t any nuance required. Sam, Alex, and CJ had no idea how to sustain a driving beat, so in connection terms there was nothing coming. There is nuance in country and the show went off the rails when the country set devolved into modified rock – Keith’s complaint to Caleb – no nuance required. So they all fell down for me

    I still listen to songs for themselves, not for the performance or acting connection aspect of it. I really don’t care if someone is not making eye contact or moving around the stage. I generally look away and simply ask is this song fulfilling the theme week’s theme and would I listen to this song again. There wasn’t a lot going on last night to make me re-listen to any of those songs.


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