I wonder whether tonight's hourlong American Idol audition show will go as fast as last night's show from San Diego? We shall see soon enough.
Raysharde Henderson is from Atlanta and says he is called "the black Clay Aiken." He sings "I Can't Make You Love Me" with more histrionics than you can imagine. Randy calls it a little over the top, and Simon says, "I wouldn't have been surprised if you had done a magic trick in the middle of that." It's a no.
DeAnna Prevatte is from Kellie Pickler's hometown of Abermarle, N.C., and her shirt straps won't stay up. She talks to the judges about her waitressing job and how the Sunday crowd is the worst. She sings "Fancy" and drops to her knees and gets a little screamy. Simon says it was a little angry and that he likes the passion and the anger "and the getting down on your knees," but it's a no from everyone.
Crystal Ortiz and Randy Stark met on the americanidol.com message boards and now they are a couple who won't stop making out. They sing together (or rather "sing" "together"). "Well, that was torture," Simon says. They tell them it was horrible. Crystal asks if she should not sing even at family functions. "No, if I was in your family, I'd ask you not to," says Simon. "I just wanted to know if my parents were blind," Crystal says. "Deaf," Simon says. But they also say yay, these two have love, and that's important. Simon tells them to check into a hotel.
Brother and sister Jeffrey and Michelle Lampkin are very gregarious and think they have the wow factor. They dance and sing a little "bow-chicka-wow-wow" song, but seem to not be cognizant of what "bow-chicka-wow-wow" usually implies. It's kind of disturbing, is what I am saying. They sing together on "I'm Your Angel." Simon calls it "slightly inappropriate at the end," probably because of the hand-holding. Simon says Jeffrey was better than his sister, but he likes them both. He adds that they are a breath of fresh air. Randy and Paula like them, too. Randy gives Jeffrey yes and no to Michelle, Paula says yes to both, and so does Simon, so they are through. "I can't split you two up," Simon says.
Montage of people forgetting the words to "Before He Cheats."
Amy Catherine Flynn is a dance-team captain and goes to different schools to preach abstinence. (She also uses the word "whatevs." Apparently, I am 900 years old. OK, carrying on ...) She volunteers to give them a speech. I try not to listen, but she says "like" a lot. Then she sings "Reflections" by Christina Aguilera. Paula likes her and gives her a yes. Simon says the song was too big for her, and that it came across as a little "girl singing in her bedroom." He goes on to say a lot of people will find her annoying because she is confident, and, trend alert, "I don't think you're as good as you think you are." (That would be three consecutive episodes in which he's dropped that line on someone.) Randy says she has "mad potential," so she is through to Hollywood. They tell her to give Ryan a very long speech. "I agree with her speech, though, Simon," Randy says after she leaves. "One week in L.A., and it'll all change," Simon replies. Yikes! (Or should I quote the Lampkins: "bow-chicka-wow-wow"?)
London Weidberg put music on hold when her father was ill. He passed away three years ago, and now she wants to pursue all her dreams. She sings "Good Morning, Heartache." Randy likes her tone, and he "kinda likes" her. Paula says her voice has a bluesy and pop quality. Simon says it was nice, but he didn't hear anything unique. So, she is through.
Day 1, "a handful" -- 15 -- made it through to Hollywood.
It's Day 2, and Paula is wearing arm-warmers. That's proof enough to me that she's crazy.
USAF pilot Lyndsey Goodman flies giant transport planes. She sings "Black Velvet" and she is nervous and a little shaky. Randy says she has "a voice" and that she had some "pitch things." Paula says she is concerned with her nerves. Simon says she is cabaret but not a contemporary pop singer. They like her as a person, but it's a no. Wonder if she got confused with all that extra footage they took of her, thinking she was a shoo-in. Oh, well.
Then there is an inappropriate transition to the audition of Aretha Codner, who was named after the singer. She says she is as good as Fantasia and all the Idols. She takes on Whitney for a while, and about halfway through, she cannot find a key. Simon tells her that the screaming, the "big belt" and the blue dress, it was all a little much. She contends that she has a beautiful voice and did a great job. "No, Aretha, you can't sing," Simon says. It's a no. "I almost don't even believe this because I know I can sing," she says. She goes on and on and on, finally, Simon says, "Goodbye."
Joshua Boson sings "And I'm Tellin' You I'm Not Going." Well, sings? He does something to it anyway. They tell him he is not good. He says, "This show is fake and rigged." And that if they come to South Carolina, this is what you are going to get. He's mad, and he rants, and he uses the word "artistes" (no, not pronounced the French way).
Montage of no, to They Might be Giants, at least.
Oliver Highman missed the first day of auditions because his daughter was being born. He, and his wife and new baby make it in for the second day. He sings "Get Here." He has so much vibrato, which drives me crazy. Simon stops him and says it's over the top, corny and old-fashioned. Randy says the vibrato was killing him (too). Paula says he has a nice voice, but it didn't work in the audition. It's a no, but they still get to see the baby.
Overall, 23 made it through to Hollywood from Charleston. For all the whininess about Charleston, it had about the same success rate as the other cities.
Next week, Omaha. And humiliation.