Tuesday, March 31, 2009

So Who's Going Home?

So since we’re down to the Top 9, we might get Ryan’s three groups of three trick tomorrow night with the top three, the bottom three and the middle three. If that’s the case, I think the top three will be Adam, Kris and Danny.

The bottom three? I’m going to go with Megan, Matt and Anoop.

So who’s going home? I’m torn between Megan and Matt. I really want Megan to go, but Matt bombed a current song. And he was in the bottom three last week.

But I’m going with my heart and saying it’s finally time for Megan to go. I think that Matt’s fans will rally after last week.

However, I have to ask, is the show trying to get rid of him? First they make him go first and then they make him perform in the middle of the audience with Ryan talking over his intro. I think they would’ve treated him a little better after last week if they wanted him to do well…

What do you guys think? Do you agree with me about Megan or do you think someone else is going home?

Kris Nails It Again

Mandisa in the house! Her new album is SO awesome…

Kris Allen, “Ain’t No Sunshine”: 20
He missed that last note slightly, but the rest of it was so awesome, I’m willing to forgive it. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. I would buy this guy’s album right now.

And I love Ryan for going after Kara’s ability to count…

Adam Plays That "Funky Music"

Adam Lambert, “Play That Funky Music”: 20
I actually said out loud, “That guy is insane.” Like Randy said, it should have been corny, but it was nowhere near. And I have to agree with Adam. The band did work out this time and kudos to him for acknowledging them. He is a smart one.

But did Simon like it or not? My guess is yes, because I saw him smiling throughout the whole thing…

Matt and Lil Blow Their Song Choices

Matt Giraud, “You Found Me”: 16
Ladies and gentlemen, the mistake of choosing a current song rears its ugly head as it always does. You would think that Matt would have learned his lesson when he did Coldplay. I’m guessing that he felt a little burnt by last week and thought he’d go with something different. But that just didn’t work. And having him perform in the audience didn’t do him any favors at all—especially having Ryan talk over his intro.

Lil Rounds, “I Surrender”: 16
So Lil can pick any song she wants and she picks Celine Dion? What?! And was any of that really in tune? I guess I just don’t get the appeal here. She’s safe though because Ryan brought out the big guns—her adorable kids.

Scott Chooses the Piano Man

Scott MacIntyre, “Just the Way You Are”: 17
Scott’s a lucky man that they expanded this theme to go beyond current songs because I think he could have been in trouble otherwise. But this one was good. I’m all for performances without the band. And for the record, I liked the hair.

Danny Goes Country and Allison Rocks No Doubt

Danny Gokey, “What Hurts the Most”: 18
So the judges loved it. Why didn’t I? Maybe it was because he was drowned out by the band a little, or maybe it was because the audio cracked right before his big moment. But something just didn’t work for me.

Allison Iraheta, “Don’t Speak”: 18
This was a great choice and it sounded good, but I had to knock off points for the outfit and her weak guitar playing. She got so nervous that she started playing ahead of herself. I kind of liked her cutting right to the rockiest part of the song, except it did kind of make it seem like she was shouting, as Simon said.

And did anyone else think that seemed incredibly short compared to the others? Of course, anything would seem short compared to that snoozefest that was Megan…

Megan Turns Down The Lights

Megan Joy, “Turn Your Lights Down Low”: 13
That may have been a little harsh, but it was seriously boring. And does she rehearse those syllables in her spare time? Those pronunciations can’t be natural.

And thanks to the show for putting her a little earlier in the running order. Maybe that will hurt her…

Anoop Gets "Caught Up"

David Spade with a primo spot tonight. Wonder where The Osbournes are sitting?...

And with Allison wearing that outfit, I’m guessing she’s ripping out the Pink…

And how wide open is that theme? Any song that’s a popular download?

Let’s get this thing started…

Anoop Desai, “Caught Up”: 17
There was something about this song that left me cold. I think it was that he was trying too hard for an impersonation with that weird snarl.

And personally, I think he should have taken Kara on. I think that might have garnered him more votes…

My Closet, Your Closet, Her Closet...

What would any lady, that has style, should have in her closet? Apart from the inevitable white shirt, classic jeans, black simple heels, Chanel set, a favorite jacket (without which we can not, for all the good!), with time we have created extravagant, sophisticated or chic needs as a consequence of trying to be different, and keep self-consistency.
In addition to your favorite wine, gynecologist, delicious cakes, phone, well-straight closet, notebook, agenda, hairdresser, favorite flowers (mine are Kala and yellow roses!) and flower shop, here's what we still need...

Pertly short skirt or dress...
New era for jeans! Torn jeans or look like your boyfriend...

We need a lot of high heels but different colors!
Really huuuuge bag
Beautiful coctail ring
Large scarf

Print type of clothes
Long gloves
Fur! Required.

Some gorgeous clutch
Over sized sunglasses
Some incredible blazer-jacket, you can wear with everything
Spectacularly necklace
My choice for 'Wide Leg' look
Thin belt
Adorable hat, huge of course
Oh, yes, you need tie like this!
Flowers on the shoes, handbag, clothes. My choice is a flower in the hair.
Harem pants
Simple, lovely maxi dress
Some detail on your head
Something unique!
Piyama for daily dose of glamour
Boysfriend'd shirt as your dress
Longer cardigan
Yes, you probably have a black leather jacket, but you need one more, in some fresh color
Cigarette pant
Jewel clothing
Between boots and shoes
Sailor look with stripes
One awesome dress you'll never wear
Vintage dress
Nude shoes, you can wear it with everything!
The perfect winter coat
Novelty purse
Something from Lacroix, for example - Lace, as clothes or just like a detail
Chic tunic
And, some gorgeous gown...

Enjoy, darlings!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Mandisa CD Review: Thank Goodness For Relentless Positivity

In times like these, sometimes all we need is a little relentless positivity.

Thank goodness Mandisa is here to help us out with that with her new CD, “Freedom.”

The great thing about Mandisa is she’s unashamed to be relentlessly positive. And why should she be? “Freedom” is even better than her debut, “True Beauty,” as she rarely hits a false note for the entire album…

The CD kick starts with the single, “My Deliverer” which begins the theme of freedom with the chorus “My deliverer/You set me free/Now I’m alive and I can live.” But that message comes with a great beat that will set your feet tapping.

That leads into my favorite track, “How Much” which has a very clever and irresistible hook.

Then it’s the first ballad of the CD, “He Is With You.” The lyrics of this one will hit home with everyone as Mandisa sings, “He is with you in the conference room/when the world is coming down on you/and your wife and kids don’t know you anymore.” There are very few artists that can do a soaring chorus like Mandisa as this one builds from a very quiet start.

Mandisa gets funky with the next track, “The Definition of Me” which features a rap from Blanca of Group 1 Crew.

Then it’s the unbelievably powerful ballad I can hear churches across America scrambling to get the track for, “Not Guilty.” Mandisa co-wrote this one with Matthew West and Sam Mizell. Just try to keep it together when she hits that chorus of “I know you/I love you/I gave my life to save you/Love paid the price for mercy/My verdict not guilty.”

Mandisa gets right back to the uptempo songs with “Leave It in the Valley” and “Victorious.” These two are probably the weakest of the CD, but that’s not saying much since even they will get those feet going.

“Broken Hallelujah” is another gorgeous ballad that starts out quiet and builds to a more restrained climax.

I was a little worried when I heard the beginning of “Freedom Song,” because I thought it was going to be a too over-the-top number, but it’s another great toe-tapper that combines the funky with the traditional.

Mandisa once again covers a Mary, Mary single with “Dance, Dance, Dance.” The song is okay, but I’m not really sure it fits with the rest of the songs on the CD.

The CD winds up on a great note, however, with another Mandisa co-write, “You Wouldn’t Cry (Andrew’s Song).” Mandisa’s voice rings crystal clear on the chorus of “Blue has never been bluer/True has never been truer.”

The great thing about the CD is that you get so caught up in the good music that you almost miss that you’re also getting a great message. But don’t be mistaken. The message is there and Mandisa is not ashamed to deliver it.

And you shouldn’t be ashamed to enjoy it…

If you’re looking for a positive message in these uncertain times, delivered by a beautiful voice with catchy beats, then this is the CD for you. I know a few friends who will be finding this one in their Easter baskets this year…

“Freedom” is available now…

Photo Credit: Sparrow Records

Michael Sarver: "I'm going to give them even more"

There’s no question that when Michael Sarver went out last week he did with a lot of class.

And he continued to show that class during his conference call with reporters Friday—although he did take one shot at the judges…

Here’s a sample of what Michael had to say…

On what he learned from the show: “I actually through my experience on Idol I learned
just how much I love my family, because I’ve never been away from them that long. I
really got a good hold on what my priorities are in life. That is my number one priority
is my family and although I’ll always want to do this music thing and I plan on hitting it
hard after this experience, it’s really taught me a lot about myself.”

On the judges goofing off during the show: “You know personally, number one, I enjoy
that because what people need to understand is this is supposed to be a fun thing. It’s
supposed to be enjoyable. It’s supposed to be the time of our lives and they help make it
that by goofing around, like Simon coloring on Paula’s face. That was just absolutely
hilarious. It does, indeed, make it complicated sometimes if you may feel like they’re
not really listening to you, but overall, the fun that they’re having on the show makes
everybody smile and that’s what entertainment is all about, bringing a positive light to the
TV world.

On whether he showed who he is as an artist: “You know, I really do actually feel like I
showed that, number one, I’m not as country as most people thought, and number two,
that there’s a lot of soul in me and I’m a soul singer and it doesn’t matter if you mix with
rock, pop or R&B, they’re soul. And I believe I established that and I believe that I
established that I’m the type of artist that will not only work my tail off to do what I do,
but that I never give less than 110% when I’m performing, and I believe I showed that.

On what artist he would compare himself to: “You know, it’s really hard because there’s such a mixture of influence in my life. But I really like the R&B pop style of Justin Timberlake, and it has a lot to do with the way that I write, but all the way across the aisle to Gavin DeGraw and bringing some of that soulful rock, just a combination of those kind of things.”

On what kind of album he’ll make: “It’s definitely going to be an R&B pop soul album.”

On what he would like to say to his fans: “My message to my fans, I thank you so much. You’ve blown my mind with your support and amazed me with your love and your messages and things that you’ve said about me. It means the world and I will never forget you.”

On a favorite bonding moment at the mansion: “The other night as a matter of fact, me and Danny and Anoop played a nice little game of basketball for the purpose of some exercise as kind of letting it all out. It was quite fun. I was horrible, of course, but it was a blast. It’s one of those things where you get on a basketball court with a couple of guys and you have that love for sports in common and just have a good time laughing.”

On whether or not he thought he would be saved: “My second was stronger because I was
stronger. I had definitely been dealing with some sickness and the performance
Wednesday night definitely, unfortunately it showed. I actually didn’t think they would
save me. I really appreciate the fact that they considered it based on my performance the
second night and how they complimented that. It meant a lot to me to really kind of in
sense redeem myself from suffering through a hard night. They did consider, but I felt
like it wasn’t going to happen, mostly based on Simon’s previous comments the night
before about not really feeling like I could win the show.”

On Simon’s comments: “You know, it didn’t necessarily tick me off, nor did it insult me,
but it kind of made me giggle because he knows better than that. We didn’t get there by
mistake. We’re all very talented. I believe in my talent and I believe in myself and what
I have to offer the music world. I definitely would not have been surprised if I had gone
back to the mansion with the guys that night and been on next week. It’s in a given week
and I’m very proud of what I brought to that table. What Simon has to say is quite
important on the show. We all know that and it has a lot of influence. Unfortunately, it
influenced in a negative direction for me, but a positive at the same time because who
cares what they say when they’re actually talking about you? It’s actually a compliment
that they’re talking about you to begin with, so it’s all right.”

On his song choice: “I really felt good about ‘Ain’t Too Proud To Beg.’ I saw that song coming weeks ago when I knew Motown Week was going to happen. I had that song in my head from the very beginning. I’m very proud of the decision to sing that song. My hope was to accomplish energy on that stage, entertainment, but actually to also show a very soulful side of me. I really believe I actually accomplished that. I was disappointed in the fact that certain elements of my health got in the way of me really giving the song what I believe it deserved, and that’s unfortunate. But no doubt, I’m proud of the decision and I look back at the performance and maybe my voice wasn’t 100%, but my heart was.”

On the impact of the judges’ comments: “I believe that what the judges say have a huge
impact on America. America listens to what they have to say. Number one, they’re in
those four seats for a reason and that’s because they know what they’re talking about.
America knows that. I’m not saying that they always get it right, and I have to be honest
with you I don’t really think they got it right necessarily altogether. There were a few
good points, but I don’t think they got it altogether right on me the other night. But the
bottom line is that they are smart. They know their stuff. They’re very talented in their
own right and America listens and pays attention. And that’s why American Idol is as
successful as it has been.”

On his future plans: “I plan to record. I plan to get my music out there and show my true
heart and artistry to America. I really believe that because I made it this far in the
competition, it shows me that there are quite a few people that really respect and
appreciate what I have and I’m going to give them even more.”

I really like Michael, but Justin Timberlake? Seriously? Stick with the country, Michael.
That’s where you belong…

Photo Credit: Frank Micelotta/FOX

This Week's Theme UPDATED

This week’s theme, according to the fine folks at FOX, is “Top Downloads.”

I honestly have no idea what that means but I’m guessing it’s some kind of iTunes chart. Apparently, Paula Abdul told a reporter that it’s “#1 downloads,” which would suggest songs that have hit #1 on the Downloads chart, but I don’t think that’s broad enough. My guess is that it’s the top 100 downloads, either from the current chart or from an all-time iTunes chart…

Whatever it is, it will most likely include current songs, which are always dangerous for the contestants.

But you know that Kara will love every minute of it because it will allow her to make plenty of suggestions about what they should have done. However, she better make her suggestions quickly because tomorrow’s show will be cut by 35 minutes (8 p.m.-9:25 p.m.).

Wednesday’s results show is scheduled to include performances by David Cook and Lady GaGa, although that may be changed due to Cook’s family matters…

UPDATE: The David Cook fans have confirmed for me what I thought I had read somewhere but couldn't find today--that Cook's "AI" performance has already been taped. I really hope that the show actually admits the pre-tape for a change because some fans that don't realize it might get mad that he's appearing on "Idol" when he cancelled concerts.

Photo Credit: Frank Micelotta/FOX

David Cook Cancels Shows

The big news in Idol Nation over the weekend is that David Cook has cancelled his next two shows.

He made the announcement at his show Saturday night before he sang his last song, “Light On.”

You can see the announcement here.

David’s website provided a little more information with this announcement:

“We are canceling Monday and Tuesday’s shows to allow David time to deal with personal family matters. Please respect his privacy at this time. David would like everyone to rest assured that we are working with the Universities to reschedule the shows that are missed.”

That’s launched speculation that the reason for the cancellations has something to do with David’s brother, Adam, who as you recall has been living with a brain tumor.

David is scheduled to appear on “American Idol” Wednesday night to sing his new single, “Come Back to Me.” There has been no word from FOX on whether that appearance is still going to happen…

Allow me to add my thoughts and prayers for the Cook family…

New Nudes!

photos via style.com
Reem Acra, Pollini

Alberta Feretti, Cavalli

Byblos, Marios Schwab

Valentino, Salvatore Ferragamo

Versace, Sue Stemp

Thakoon, Stella McCartney

Preen, Nina Ricci

Marios Schwab, Lanvin

Haider Ackermann, Etro

Bottega Veneta, Blumarine

Akris, Ralph Lauren

Sonia Rykiel, Bottega Veneta

3.1 Phillip Lim, Cavalli


Givenchy, John Rocha

Richard Nicoll, Salvatore Ferragamo

Salvatore Ferragamo, Viktor & Rolf


Ralph Lauren, Nina Ricci

Narciso Rodriguez, Max Mara

Giorgio Armani, Giambattista Valli

Fendi, Erin Fetherston

DVF, Derek Lam

ChloƩ, Carolina Herrera

Burberry Prorsum, Alberta Ferretti

3.1 Phillip Lim, Alessandro Dell'Acqua, ChloƩ
Christian Dior, Emilio Pucci, Bottega Veneta
3.1 Phillip Lim, Versace, Matthew Williamson