Posts Tagged ‘Salt Lake City auditions


Salt Lake City, Utah 1.28.09

Salt Lake City, 1/28/09

Lil’ Dawg

Frankie Jordan: Great voice, very different. Kinda like Amy Winehouse, but better I think.

Megan Corkery: Pretty old-fashioned voice. Very memorable as Simon said. And her son is so cute! Smile

Austin Sisneros: Very bad song choices but you can kinda tell he has a voice. His little “it’s okay to follow your dreams” and “I’m here to inspire people” speeches reminded me of Archie. But his voice isn’t as good as Archie’s – not even close.

Taylor Vaifanua: I don’t think her voice is that great. It’s not bad . . . it’s just not wow!

Tight Black T

The intro hype on Salt Lake City, the home of last year’s runner up, David Archuletta, was that they met “some of the happiest people we’ve ever seen.” Shiny, happy people are not what American Idol is supposed to be about – it’s all about the music dammit. Oh wait, that’s something else. Rolleyes

What visit to Utah would be complete without the Osmonds, who make up 25% of the population of Utah. Okay, I made that up, but it’s gotta be pretty damn close! David Osmond, son of Alan, grew up in the family business, singing barbershop with his brothers since he was four. David suffers from MS, as does his dad, and a few years ago was in a wheelchair. In a remission period now, he looked unbelievably strong and healthy. While he had a good voice, the judges didn’t seem to like him very much, worrying that he couldn’t be a solo artist. But, they put him through to Hollywood just the same.

Goth chick Tara Mathews’ ESP must have been on the fritz since she had no idea she was going to suck so badly.

In our usual procession of losers’ montage, we had our requisite scary dude – Rick something or other. He was the full package of loser goodness – Michael Bolton 90’s hair, sunglasses on top of his head, and creepy, buggy eye lined eyes that darted around. The icing on the cake was when he said he could show them something else, and his tongue darted around like Bartie Crouch, Jr. from Harry Potter. Don’t get the reference, too bad.

I’m frightened by the fact that Simon actually seemed to enjoy being picked up by super-sized pink bunny, “Greg the Rabbit.”

We have had a slew of moms auditioning this season. Salt Lake City brought us Frankie Jordan, a 23-year-old stay at home mom. She sang Amy Winehouse. Her voice definitely had that same quality, but I think she is much more than a Winehouse wannabe. Her voice is very distinctive and I’d love to hear her sing something more bluesy.

Our other mom was soon to be divorced Megan Corkery. First off, her son was just the cutest thing. Megan sang “Can’t Help Loving That Man of Mine.” While I had high hopes for Megan, I’m not completely sure about her voice. The judges seemed to love her, particularly Simon. Maybe I missed something.

Austin Sisneros is an Archie wannabe. While he never said it, I could imagine the end of each of his sentences being punctuated with “gosh.” His song choices were horrid, and his voice was just okay. And you guessed it, we’ll be seeing him in Hollywood.

Originally from Samoa, Taylor Vaifanua is a very mature, very tall (5’11”) 16-year-old. As with so many contestants this season, I thought her voice was good, but couldn’t understand the praise heaped upon her. “One of the best vocals we’ve heard this season.” – Randy. Huh

Rose Flack was our tearjerker story of the night. In the past four years, this 17-year-old has lost both her parents and now lives with a friend’s family. Even with her tragedies, this girl still has spunk and a pretty positive attitude. Her funky style brought raves from the judges (and my viewing companion). Her cool vibe did not translate into good vocals though. There is something interesting about her and I’m hopeful that better song choices and the confidence of having gotten through that audition will bring out Rose’s potential.

They’re cramming New York City and San Jose into one night tonight. Thank God. It’s off to Hollywood on Tuesday, not a moment too soon!

Seacrest’s Hair

We’ve done these reviews in the past, and this is the first time we’ve been able to keep our audition notes down to two pages in the ol’ notebook. Dang. Anyway, we’re in Salt Lake City, and apparently the people here are happy because they smile and cheer for the cameras. Not because the producers told them to, of course.

They surprise us by cutting straight to the Osmond kid, David, who like his dad Alan has MS, and like all Osmonds has that smile. We did a quick Google search and confirmed that Take Six is one of those annoying Christian bands, so of course David loves them. We were hoping for “Puppy Love”, really. Anyway, you can’t reject an Osmond while in Utah; it’s just not allowed, like being gay. David gets a ton of “constructive criticism” and a golden ticket.

Bring on the losers! Tara Mathews is the typical fat Goth chick, claims she has ESP, and can’t sing worth a damn. We get a quick montage of a goat girl, a horridly dramatic girl, and a creepy guy with… oh, Michael Bolton hair and a penchant for licking his lips. A lot. Lewdly.

Chris Kirkham might have gotten through, even with his karaoke voice, if he hadn’t come in with Simon on his shirt… Simon on a stick… and a giant pink bunny. Apparently not everyone in SLC is a teetotaler.

Then we get a montage of graceful losers, the judges ponder moving to SLC, and Seacrest tries to pep-talk the Mormons into fighting back.

Frankie Jordan has a very, very, very cute baby (so cute we forgot to check out the hubby) and a quite pleasant voice. Seacrest gets to say “Frankie goes to Hollywood.”

Oh look, more cute baby! Toddler, actually. His mommy is Megan Corkrey, who filed for divorce and auditioned for Idol almost concurrently. It’s also her birthday. She has a very weird, slide-y, edgy voice and we definitely don’t care for her song choice. This is Simon’s “favorite audition”. And apparently Simon likes “different”. Did he get hit on the head with something? Replaced with a pod person??

Now we get a montage o’ winners, because apparently Megan put the judges in such a good mood they’re letting everyone through. Or not.

Andrew Gibson only gets a quick moment, but makes us wonder why baritones think they could possibly get on Idol. Sorry, pop music is for tenors. Go back to a cappella choir.

Austin Sisneros is not auditioning just for himself, but as an example to… um, his classmates? Other kids? He’s got a lispy speaking voice but sings pretty well, despite weird song choices. Raffi? This kid confuses us. He gets through, we think, on perseverance, likeability and cuteness. What a season this is turning out to be.

Next, a crying montage, followed by a snippet of Jarrett Burns, who picks a girl song but seems to have a decent range. And another montage o’ losers, edited to turn into an extended yodel. Great.

Taylor Vaifanua makes us pause the VCR to get her name down. She’s wicked tall, some kind of ethnic, and claims to be 16, although she looks maybe 25 to our eyes. Pretty good, but… eh… she gets through.

Finally, after much pimping, we meet Rose Flack, who is a cute 17 year old orphan from Idaho. She has short blonde dreadlocks and is repeatedly described as a “free-spirit”, which says to us she knows where to get the good stuff. We liked her song choice, “I Feel The Earth Move”, and she sings it a lot better than the judges give her credit for. We love her, so she’ll probably be cut in the first public-voting round.

Tomorrow (can we really stand a third hour this week?), Rutherford, NJ a/k/a New York City and San Juan, PR are crammed into one hour. This is all for the best, because next week, everyone gets torn to shreds in Hollywood. Excellent…