American Idol Feb. 18: Quarterfinal 3

Overall the quality of singing this week was FAR better, on average, than the previous weeks. Six of the eight contestants were better than anyone in Week 1.

My impressions:

KIMBERLEY KELSEY

Good stage presence, nice voice, and she looks great. I don’t LIKE her voice though - it sounds juvenile, like she’s a really talented 12-year-old.

JORDAN SEGUNDO

Good look, great voice. Poor song choice. He was good, but not quite good enough, IMHO.

VANESSA OLIVAREZ

Great voice, great song choice, great look. Despite Simon’s comments, 100 million North American men and millions more women would jump her bones in a New York minute. IMHO, the best of the night, which I find surprising - I hadn’t thought she was that good. Far better than I expected.

RICKEY SMITH

The “Hercules! Hercules!” guy. I expected him to blow the field away, and he didn’t, but he was still better than anyone else except Olivarez. AWESOME voice. Like a lot of them, he chose an awful song. He should sing Michael Jackson or Stevie Wonder.

SAMANTHA COHEN

Pretty weak by comparison to the others. Technically good but her voice isn’t that powerful. Her Mom has obviously been pushing her and living vicariously through her since she was about two years old.

LOUIS GAZZARA

Simon was right; he belongs in a boy band. Amazingly powerful voice but just a so-so presentation, and another poor song choice.

EQUOIA COLEMAN

I got the sense the judges liked her the best going in and were disappointed in her. Her cold might have held her back a little. ANOTHER bad song choice; I’m starting to really wonder about that vocal coach. The judges may hand her a wild card just because she still has potential.

GEORGE TRICE

Worst. Singer. Ofthenight. Has a nice voice but he spent three quarters of the song doing vocal tricks. It was a bad presentation.
My choices: I would pick Vanessa Olivarez and Rickey Smith. They had the best voices, by far, and the most personality, and Olivarez has the best look. Honorable mention to Jordan Segundo.

Who I Think They’ll Pick: This group was the closest by far, so it’s hard to say, but the public has gone for talent over traditional “pop star” looks in three out of four picks so far, and the talentless Julie DeMato was kind of a special case. So I’ll predict the public will go with talent and pick Olivarez and Smith.

I completely agree with you, RickJay – well, except on Rickey Smith’s (we call him Sosa) song choice. I like the song, and his voice is very similar to Brian McKnight’s so he could do a solid job with it. So perhaps I do agree in that he could have sung the hell out of, say, “Uptight” or something like that, something uptempo. I loved Vanessa going in, so I was glad to see her back it up. She’s charming, too – I really liked her.

I was disappointed in Equoia’s performance because she has a powerhouse voice. Her song choice was odd.

I agree with RickJay’s summary. I was impressed with the singers in this round. I really like Vanessa’s personality. Rickey Smith was also very good, but there’s just something about him that rubs me the wrong way. I don’t know if it’s the Hercules bit or what, but it just turned me off. He’ll probably make it to the next round but I’d rather see Jordan or Equoia move on.

Gah! Beat me by a few minutes. Foo.

I just opened another thread, but I’ll repost my thoughts here and let mine die:

Well, this was definitely the most blah group yet. The full contestant page for this group of 8 can be viewed here.

My top 3 picks for tonight are, coincidentally, the first 3 performers:

Kimberly Kelsey - I hate Celine Dion, but she had a strong voice and good presence.

Jordan Segundo - the best of the men tonight, IMO. What was with the weirdo zipper on the sweater, though?

Vanessa Olivarez - cute, perky, good voice, upbeat personality, handled Simon’s slam on her weight with aplomb. I like her.

If I had to pick, I’d go for Jordan and Vanessa as the final two from this group. I think that George Trice might have a nice voice, but Unchained Meloday was too slow and laid back for him to showcase it…poor song choice. I can’t stand the falsetto of Ricky Smith and the foofy hand clapping has got to go. Louis Gazzara shouldn’t have touched that Michael Bolton song with a 10 foot pole…he was the worst of the bunch tonight. Lessee…who’s left? Samantha Cohen is way too skinny to be singing a big, brash Aretha song. As for Equoia, I don’t recall her audition, but they showed a clip of Simon saying “Why don’t you already have a recording contract?”…needless to say, it just goes to show that one audition doesn’t tell the whole story. I thought her performance was extraordinarily mediocre.

Thoughts?

Whoops! Just in case it isn’t clear from my previous post, I want Vanessa to move on. And I loved her J-Lo comment and admitting she has a big butt. hehe

I have to agree with Simon and Randy tonight - nothing really just blew me away. My picks though are Vanessa and Jordan.

ITA. Very beige show tonight. Whoever gets through from this group will probably be among the first to be eliminated once the final competition gets going. Boring. Boring. Boring.

I liked Vanessa a lot, and Jordan was cool too. I was excited when the one guy announced he was going to sing Unchained Melody, until he started singing, gah. Oh-oh-oh-OH-ohh, myyy loOovvvvve, my dArrrrrlinnnnng, yadda yadda yadda. Go Vanessa and Jordan!

Oh my god, Ricky was the absolute worst. He was okay, nothing great, until he tried to do the run at the end and sounded like he was dying. I hate runs in general but his was particularly terrible; all sorts of notes were missed. And the Nutty Professor schtick is tired now and was tired back in 1998.

I like Vanessa and Kimberley.

Vanessa and Rickey for me… but I agree… boooring field. Maybe Vanessa will go farther than we think (she stand out from all the rest because of her look), but I just don’t think these folks can compete with the 4 already picked.

What did you folks see in Vanessa? Ick. None of them were standouts. All of them were in the “eh” category, IMO.

Vanessa and Ricky, all the way.

Yeah, none of them were standouts, so it was hard to pick anyone. I do think Vanessa had the strongest voice out of the group, and she probably had the best song choice to match her voice. The others either stunk or didn’t pick the right song to showcase their talent. Equoia just seemed like a bitch, IMO. All those gestures she made at the camera just before the break (before her performance) like she was trying to play cool, just came off as “Yeah, whatever!”

And why oh why oh why can’t Paula just tell the truth…JUST ONCE?

Even among the lackluster, I didn’t feel Vanessa had the strongest voice. Then again, maybe I was being distracted by the lingerie top she was wearing that was about three sizes too small for her…

Duh, she’s got weird colored hair. That means she’s “edgy” and perhaps a “rebel”.

[sub]What? It doesn’t? :P[/sub]

I don’t get what everyone sees in Ricky…I thought he was downright awful. Screeching falsetto, dropped notes all over the place. Ick, ick and ick. Next to the Michael Bolton wannabe, I thought he was the second worst of the evening. I’m flummoxed that people are picking him to go on.

It has nothing to do with that. I didn’t like Nikki from last season, and she had weird colored hair. I just think she had the best voice out of the blah choices we had last night. shrug

I liked Ricky until last night. When he did Michael Jackson’s “The Way You Make Me Feel” I thought he did a really good job. Last night, I thought he was awful.

I agree okie, and I wasn’t suggesting anyone here liked her for superficial reasons. I was commenting more on the reactions the judges and people on the show give anyone with oddly colored hair, as if that and that alone can make you a rebel. :slight_smile:

If I’m not mistaken, the vocal coach is not allowed to help them choose songs. She is only allowed to help them with what they choose themselves. Which is kind of interesting–IMHO being able to choose the right material is very very important.

Here are my thoughts (written during the show. I take notes. I’m such a yutz!)

  1. Kimberly Kelsey
    She’s got “the look.” Strong voice, but her phrasing is off. A little sharp. She’s good, but I have no particular desire to ever see her again.

  2. Jordan Segundo.
    Ridiculous sweater, but very cute. Boy, is he trying hard to sound like he has a rich full voice, but he doesn’t. Blah. But he’s so cute. He should be an actor.

  3. Vanessa Olivarez
    Love her dress and her curvey figure. She’s beautiful. Love her hideous clothes.
    Great voice and vocal style, and we’ve seen a lot of versatility from her. I’ve really enjoyed all of her performances to date. I like her personality, but worry that she could get annoying.
    She’s like the anti-Kim Locke–she’s confident without being smug. She shows off her zaftig body without subjecting us to granny-panty lines.
    She’s pulling ahead as a strong favorite to me.

  4. Rickey Smith
    I loved him before, but his performance blew. Horrid song choice.
    The “Hercules” thing is getting extremely old and annoying. But that giggle is wonderful.

  5. Samantha Cohen
    She thinks she’s sexy and bluesy, but she’s not. What the hell is she doing with her head? She looks like Ellen Cleghorne doing “homegirl” impressions on SNL. Horrid dress. Makes her look like she has a poochy flabby belly. I can’t stop looking at her belly.
    Bleah singing. Bad song choice. Please don’t try to do Aretha. You don’t have the pipes for it.
    HEY MA! GET OFF THE COUCH!

  6. Lou Gazzara
    Good Christ is he annoying.
    He’s Jingleheimer’s shit eating grin twin.
    Oh my goodness, he sucks.

  7. Equoia
    E-Quoia is E-noying. Where’d her last name go?
    Smooth voice, but sounds like everyone else on the radio.
    I’ve just about had it with the trills and r-u-u-U-u-U-u-u-u-U-u-U-ns. She’s got the runs so bad she should be wearing Depends. If you think the song isn’t impressive enough on its own, then choose another song. Adding runs isn’t the answer.
    “Small bar Las Vegas?” Ha! But really, she’s more like “small bar Orlando.”

  8. George Trice
    Hand on belly? Squatting? He looks like he’s trying to poop.
    Is this a joke?
    He and Jennifer Fuentes should go on tour together.
    Paula says he’s brilliant? She’s on crack. “Waiter in an Italian restaurant?” Bwah! So true.

Conclusion: Vanessa was a standout in a weak field. I sent her 25 votes. Rickey was lousy and annoying, but I loved him so much before, so I’m willing to believe he had an off night. I sent him 25 votes. Just please no more “Hercules.” Jordan was total eye-candy and didn’t suck–I didn’t vote for him, but won’t be sorry if he moves on.