Wednesday, April 26

Top 6 (4/25/06)

This week's theme is Greatest Love Songs of All Time (in the Known Universe, tm Randy). The guest artists are Andrea Bocelli (I didn't know he's blind!) and David Foster. They are much, much more interesting than I expected - well, we'll see about the performance tomorrow, but the "coaching" was really good. I try to listen to most performances for a little bit w/my eyes shut to try to just judge the audio, so of course I find myself curious to hear a blind man's opinion. (And David had a fun time asking Andrea what he thought the contestants looked like, because Andrea usually guessed right on! Such as, "What color is Kellie's hair?" "Blonde!" Not that that's a difficult one, but you get the picture.)

But even more than that, I enjoyed David's critiques of the contestants' singing, because he critiqued!! He was very... well, harsh, really, with them, and I think that was good for them. ;-) I think most of them appreciated it.

Also Kat was singing some operatic duet w/Andrea (cool!), and Chris had to lie on the floor on his back to sing (made him use his diaphragm instead of just his throat).

The songs:
1. Katharine- I Have Nothing
2. Elliott- A Song For You*
3. Kellie- Unchained Melody
4. Paris- The Way We Were
5. Taylor- Just Once
6. Chris- Have You Ever Loved A Woman

I didn't take notes. Everyone was good, as they should be at this point, though some weren't very interesting. I need to rewatch Kat's, as I thought it was great but I was running back & forth to the kitchen; Randy & Paula both thought she was bad (off-pitch). Though her dress (or lack thereof in strategic places) will garnish her quite a few (male) votes, regardless of the vocal.

Kellie did much better than I expected her to, and I wasn't bored because I didn't know quite what to expect, but it was a rather boring performance, if that makes sense. (David Foster called her robotic!!)

Elliott and Paris were very, very good, the best 2 performances IMO, though Chris was close behind. I still fear for Paris because while she can sing anything fantastically (Andrea was v. impressed), her style changes so much that her 'self' disappears somewhere in there, and I think having some sort of strong or defining personality is key at this point. (Plus uniqueness, especially in genre, and she & Elliott may split some votes because of that.)

The first half of Taylor's was boring, but it picked up speed & the last third or so was really awesome. I wish he'd used the same power for the whole song.

And Chris was very good; great (though surprising) song choice for him!

My prediction of bottom 3: Elliott, Paris, and Kellie, with Paris leaving. (Kellie was reamed and we know from last week that gets votes, but 2 poor performances in a row usually has some effect.)

*Musician trivia: one of their background singers is Donnie Hathaway's daughter!

Thursday, April 20

My belated recap of the Top 7 Results Show(4/19/06) - Goodbye Ace! *sniff*

We got the normal recap of last night's performances & some of the sessions with Rod; at one point he said "I think they're all bloody marvelous!"

The car-mercial wasn't very exciting; there were billboards advertising concerts with each of the contestants, and then what looked like a photo was the actual contestant who started dancing around... to the song "Kids in America." I think the car was just driving around seeing all the billboards.

Rod Stewart came out & chatted briefly with Ryan on the couch, then performed "The Way You Look Tonight."

And next week's theme was announced to be "Greatest Love Songs of All Time" (so, a change from "Former Idols' Songs", for better or worse). The guest coach & performer will be Andrea Bocelli. On American Idol. Alrighty then.

On to eliminations. We're down to 7, which means there will be two groups of 3 and the 7th person will be forced to choose which is the top and which is the bottom (per George, who just felt horrible about the whole situation, rightfully, and Bo, who just stood in the middle between the two!). So, Elliott is sent to the far side of the stage, and Chris to the near side. Already I'm calling Elliott's group as bottom 3, and when Kellie joins him, I'm certain. However... Paris joins Chris, Ace also joins Chris, and Katharine joins Elliott. I'm uncertain now as the 2 people I thought guaranteed a spot in the bottom 3 (Kellie and Ace) are in different groups. I'm holding my breath hoping that my initial guess was correct. Then Taylor... is told that he's safe! (But he "may or may not have received the most votes.") *Then* Ryan tells him to join the group he thinks is the top 3. He has the commercial break to think about it. When they're back he's standing in the middle with Ryan and walks toward Chris's group, extending his hand to shake Chris'. Ryan starts to tell Taylor he picked the wrong group, but he spoke too soon because as soon as Taylor finished the hand shake he shrugged & went to join Elliott's group! Way to fake Ryan out! So Ryan had to stumble over his words so that what he said made sense...

Anyway, that makes Ace (expected), Paris (the best performance of the night!), and Chris (the Chosen One!) in the bottom 3, while Kellie (the absolutely worst performance of the night, admitted by every human I've seen express an opinion, including Kellie herself) not in the bottom 3. I understand that she has fans. Voting fans. They obviously felt she needed the votes after that performance. But still.

Paris is sent back to the couches and Ryan calls the remaining 2 guys "the Matt Damon and Ben Affleck of American Idol." Hee! So true. Anyway, they've run out of time to make any sort of big deal about Chris' being there, and just announce that Ace is going home. He was prepared and wasn't too emotional about it, entering his sing-out as one last chance to entertain people and brighten their day (or however he worded it on the "Journey" clip, which I thought was sweet, and reminded me of Justin because he always said something similar). Unfortunately the credits started rolling as soon as he started singing and he was cutoff way before the song was done. Sigh. As with Bucky last week though, at least he got to go out on a decent performance. And we might actually get to know him a little bit in his talk show interviews next week!

Tuesday, April 18

Top 7 - The Classics (4/18/06)

This will be (relatively) short, as I got home late and (*gasp*!) didn't take notes. ;-) This week's theme was not Rod Stewart. Heh. Rod worked with the contestants, who could choose from some of the songs on Rod's series of 4 albums of American Standards. Here's the list of performances:

1. Chris- What A Wonderful World
2. Paris- These Foolish Things
3. Taylor- You Send Me
4. Elliott- It Had to Be You
5. Kellie- Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered
6. Ace- That's All
7. Katharine- Someone to Watch Over Me

I would say everyone except Kellie was "good" to "very good". Kellie was just ok... no blatant errors, but incredibly boring, and you'd think with a song title like that she should express some emotion in singing the song, rather than just stand still and smile. (She looked great though.) Some of the judges thought Kat blew everyone else away, but I disagree (she was very good & in her element, but several others were too...). Chris was great, just sang for once, and showed that he really does have a nice tone to his voice and can be versatile when he chooses. Paris was awesome, maybe her best since Midnight Train. Taylor was very, very good - mostly just sang straight (the mp3 will be awesome!) & then 'Taylor-ed' it up at the end. One of his top performances as well. Elliott chose a great song and looked smashing in a purple shirt and velvet jacket! Sang very well; his voice & style are perfect for this genre. And Ace... um, he sang? ;-) Just kidding. He wore a dark suit and had his hair slicked back into a pony tail; a very different and rather striking look for him. The song was a great choice for his voice and while there was a segment of falsetto (Randy, please stop telling him to sing a whole song in that!!), overall it was a good mix and he didn't over-melisma (or gesture) it. A very solid performance.

So... "good" isn't enough at this point. I have my fingers crossed that Kellie will finally make an appearance in the bottom 3, but I won't hold my breath. Ace & Elliott are pretty certain to. If Kellie's not the 3rd, it's a toss-up, really, but I'll guess Paris because I think some are tiring of her. I think either Ace or Elliott will be sent home - boo! If I have to choose... I'm afraid it'll be Ace. (I tried to vote for both of them & the lines were mostly busy.)

Rod will be performing on tomorrow's results show. He really had a great sense of humor & seems to be somewhat of a goof-ball, which surprised me a bit. But he enjoyed working w/the contestants and complimented most of them, some to the point of saying he really couldn't offer much advice (Ace included)! And he said he's done w/standards and returning to rock.

Friday, April 14

Bucky Interview

Creative, title, I know. It's late. ;-) Here's a great interview with Bucky Covington the day after his elimination. He's very smart and savvy about how the show works, as he'd shown somewhat before. Also funny, and rather chatty, also as expected. Such a class act, really, and very sweet guy.

Thursday, April 13


Lots of clips from contestants' families, a miniaturized group number, and emotional bottom three-ers trying to sing comprised tonights results show. I'm not doing a full recap, but the Queen medley was forced into a quarter of the screen while montage clips (a few included finalists, but most did not) ran in another corner. Phooey on them! The song assignments were pretty good though, and Chris & Bucky's voices sound awesome together!

When asked what they missed most from home, I loved Ace & Bucky's answers: the mountains (yes! and I only lived in CO for 2 yrs!) and the pet. :-)

Elliott, Ace, and Bucky were the bottom 3. As Ryan went to each contestant we saw video clips from home and then the contestant was given his or her fate. The whole back row - Taylor, Kat, Chris, and Kellie - were safe. Elliott's the first in the bottom row & the first to the bottom 3. Ryan surprised him by asking him to sing and Elliott thinks he's joking! Then E asks what song and Ryan just says "follow the band"! Poor Elliott. Anyway he still sang well. ;-) Ace was 2nd to be named to the bottom and was, like Elliott, trying to recover from an emotional response to the home clip in order to sing. Last on the couches were Bucky and Paris, who was extremely emotional over her clip (my 2 observations: her mom looks about 20, and the AI audition was like the final 'test' for Paris as to whether she would pursue a singing career, as she'd pretty much decided to give it up!), and Bucky was like the comforting big brother (adorable!). He was expecting to be bottom 3 and he was right - and sang well. Then all 3 bottom guys were brought center stage and told that Bucky was leaving. He had the best attitude possible, kind-of shrugged & said "somebody's gotta go!" I'll miss him, but I agree. Actually I'm not as sad as I expected to be; I was relieved for Ace and Elliott, but I think I was sadder to see Will in the audience (happy to see him, but sad he's not competing) than to see Bucky go. Ah well... condolences to the many fans I know he has. I look forward to hearing more from him in the future. (Here's an original song of Bucky's; it's very good!)

Wednesday, April 12

AI5 - Top 8 - Queen (4/11/06)

Bucky: "Fat Bottomed Girls" - the band said Bucky has a good attitude and is a showman and performer. Bucky is great! Seems to be very comfortable and having a lot of fun; pulled the crowd into it and they had fun as well. He even got the rock "treatment," with lighting, appropriately rockin' accompaniment, etc. Great way to start the night!! Randy agreed; Paula said he made it country rock & was great; Simon said it was a good choice but the song was bigger than him & it was just "mediocre."

Ace: "We Will Rock You" - the band called Ace very "interactive," hee! When he gave them his arrangement ideas they were, understandably, hesitant to change their song. Ace was persistent and they came up with a compromise... he started off like the original and made it a bit more R&B/Urban for the last third. Ace rocked! I thought he did an awesome job though admittedly out of his comfort zone; his vocals were awesome, they really can be strong & full at times; he took charge of the stage; and he was, well, hott!! Randy disagreed & said it was just ok, a 5 or 6, karaoke; Paula liked that he took a risk; Simon said it was a "complete & utter mess", that Ace forgot some words, and he hated it. Oh well. Maybe that'll bring in some extra votes.

And yes, the spoiler was correct, Kellie sang "Bohemian Rhapsody." She said her dad listened to Queen when she was a little girl, and that she was taking it as a good sign when the band called her "brave" in song choice. She went all out - Simon called the look "Night of the Living Dead," and I'll agree it was strange - Blondie-style straight hair and a black leather jacket w/jeans. This isn't your grandmother's Kellie Pickler... this is Kellie attempting to be a rock vixen! She came a lot closer to pulling it off than I expected her to. The vocal was only bad in a few spots and she walked out to the platform by the judges. All of the judges said they were nervous hearing her choice - as Simon said, "on paper" it's disastrous (prompting tonight's scripted dumb blonde response of, "On paper? What do you mean?") - but said she did fairly well on it.

Chris: "Innuendo" - the band complimented his voice and his "rock sensibility;" they seemed quite impressed w/him. He performed well I guess; it was pretty much his normal, screamy thing. Randy said he "delivered" and Paula liked it as well. Simon said that while it's the best vocal so far tonight, the song itself is not great and it was again "indulgent" of Chris to choose this instead of a classic that would have better entertained the audience. So, then Ryan tries to spin by asking Randy whether people should vote "for the song, or for him?" To which Randy, of course, answers to vote for Chris. I'll also note here that my husband, a huge Chris fan, called this performance "just ok."

Kat: "Who Wants to Live Forever?" - Excellent choice, as it allows her to just stand & sing, highlighting her vocals. I really think she's the only one at this point who could really pull off a song like this that showcased Freddy's incredibly voice so well. I thought it was very good; definitely the best girl of the night. Randy said spots were pitchy but it was good overall; Paula said it was the right song and she did great; Simon said it was "almost the moment" (um, ok then) & was pitchy though still "one of the strongest" of the night.

Elliott: "Somebody to Love" - shockingly, Elliott had never heard this song before! But as the band explained Freddy wrote it "inspired by Aretha" (& gospel style), he thought it very fitting. He was great!!! Incredible vocally, and added some of his own style as well. Randy said it was the hardest song of the night and somewhat pitchy but that he loved it and thought it was "really, really good;" Paula said it was the best vocal of the night; Simon agreed it was a tough song but said he "probably" pulled it off.

Taylor: "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" - Queen was also impressed with Taylor, and said he has a good voice ("instrument") with a "nice quality." I was a bit nervous about the choice as I thought it could be too gimmicky/comedic, but as soon as he started I knew it would be great! Very, very good; probably the best overall performance of the night. The background vocals were very good (balanced w/him, etc.), and the crowd loved it as well. Randy said "Taylor is back," "kickin' and takin' names," and Paula liked it. Simon asked Taylor if he was drunk and said it was "ridiculous." Ok then; the rest of us loved it!!

Last is Paris with "The Show Must Go On." The band also thought she has a very good voice. I didn't like her look; not incredibly flattering & the Tina Turner-ish hair made her look 17 going on 50. Her vocals were good and she was fairly convincing at the rock thing, but not completely. It's possible I would've liked hers better had she performed earlier, but I was so impressed w/several others that Paris left me wanting. Randy said the start and middle were rough but that she "worked it out" (which apparently isn't as big of a compliment as I thought before tonight); Paula called her a "rock powerhouse;" Simon just said "I found it all a little weird" (me too!!) and then the music cut him off.

My personal bottom 3 tonight are easy, as they're the 3 performances I didn't enjoy: Kellie, Chris, & Paris. However, there are only 3 girls left and 5 guys; also, Paris is the sole remaining African American. So she's not going anywhere this week. I think the bottom 3 is a tough call, as anyone other than Taylor & probably Chris could make an appearance. I'm going to go with Elliott, Bucky, and Kellie, with Elliott leaving. I voted on & off for Elliott, Bucky, and Ace, all 3 lines getting quite a few busy signals but Bucky's cleared up for the last half hour. It may be him instead of Elliott but I'm sticking with wishful thinking for now. And Ace or Paris could take Kellie's spot.

I also wanted to say that the whole night was more "rock" than I was expecting, but I'm glad. Since the frontrunners' preferred genres are rock and country, it's only fitting that they make everyone else sing those as well. There were a few pleasant surprises (mainly Ace) and I thought it was one of the best performance nights this season.

Tuesday, April 11

Spoilered Song List

I won't list them here in case anyone doesn't want to know yet, but if you do want to know who's singing which Queen song this week, this article lists them. Personally I'm not too happy about most of the choices; hopefully I'll be pleasantly surprised.

Wednesday, April 5

Top 9 Results

Ryan still hasn't shaved, but tells us there were almost 35 million votes last night. In the highlight reel, the "country crooners" (Kellie & Bucky) did well; the genre was "a gamble" for Chris & Ace but Keith Urban proved a "good hand to play." Paris "shuffled things up with the judges," but Simon's "nice streak" didn't last long; everyone knows "Simon doesn't like country music."

Kenny Rogers sang what we're told is the debut single from his new album. It's called "I Can't Unlove You," and is catchy in that corny country play-on-words kind of way. ;-) Interestingly the band was too loud for him, too! Making his vocals hard to hear through much of the song.

Commercial time! The song is "Just One Look," and the 'look' is grungy. Which works very, very well for several of our contestants. ;-)

Next week's theme is announced and it's songs by Queen! There's a short video clip of the 'kids' meeting the band - well, there are shots of them jammin' (Bucky's doing some headbanging, look at those locks fly!) interspersed with shots of band members. Whatever, we'll get the real stuff next week. Song choice should be very interesting.

Ryan moves to the contestants and says he'll be splitting the 9 of them into 3 groups of 3 each, and one group will be revealed as the bottom 3. Nigel said this on Ryan's radio show this morning. He also said that the person going home was surprising and someone well-liked by others. The "surprising" part encourages me because, really, neither Ace nor Bucky would be incredibly shocking given their multiple trips to the seal. But we'll see...

The groups are as follows: Group 1 - Taylor, Kellie, Chris. Group 2 - Mandisa, Elliott, Paris. (My picks for the bottom 3, hmm....) Group 3 - Ace, Kat, and Bucky. Unsurprisingly Group 1 is sent to safety first. Now, they're probably thinking people will guess Group 3 for the bottom and be oh so surprised that it is, in fact, Group 2. But given last night's performances, combined with performance order and the fact that fans often vote more following someone's 1st bottom 3 experience (i.e. Kat), there isn't much surprise.

I'm nervous for Elliott, though of course quite happy that Ace & Bucky are both safe. Paris is sent to the couches, leaving Mandisa and Elliott... and, Mandisa is going home. I guessed right this week! Mandisa is a bit emotional and the audience, after an initial hush, raises to give her a standing ovation, which was nice. She composed herself during the "journey" clip and did just fine for her sing-out. The others clapped and bounced along, joining in her 'let's have a little bit more fun while we can' attitude, which was also nice. Several of them also sang along, namely Kellie, but also Bucky, who stopped abruptly soon after he appeared on camera! You know, because he didn't exactly want to be seen singing about "Any Man of Mine...." (bwah!) He is notorious for jammin' to others' songs though and with country I'm sure it was just irresistable!

That's it for this week. Go, Ace & TeaBiscuit!!

Top 9 (4/4/06) - Country Week!

Ryan has a disturbing 10:00 shadow, or something. And he'd been looking so much nicer this season with the less-spiky, shorter hair and actual suits instead of jackets over tees....

On to the show. Kenny Rogers worked with the contestants this week, and he will be the guest performer tomorrow night. His hair and beard are both completely white, and when he walked into the room I didn't even recognize him! In the scenes showing the group practicing, Bucky was shown a couple of times playing guitar. Another guitar player was next to him which I assume was Chris, though he wasn't shown. And Whoopi is in the audience. (As are Chris Rock & Rachel Bilson, shown later. Um, not together though.)

Taylor: "Take Me Home, Country Roads" - Ack! Taylor, Rule #1 of song choice is never, *ever* sing a song about leaving! They usually turn out to be premonitory (just ask Melissa, though you might have to define it first). Other than that, he stood the stillest he ever has, and just sang. The harmony was a bit strange and made him sound off-key; I'm not sure if he really was or not. I wanted it to be better than it was. (Which applies to the first 4 performances tonight.) Randy (wearing a red vest - wha?!) said it was a good choice, though the vocal was "just ok" as it didn't show his personality; Paula agreed that he didn't "shine;" and Simon said it was safe, boring, and lazy (the crowd booed, of course). Several things about this performance & his attitude (during it; he was back to 'normal' after) seem fishy to me given some recent online rumors, but I'll assume they're just that until proven otherwise and withhold judgment. So, good, not great.

Mandisa: "Any Man of Mine" (Shania) - Kenny commented that this song has more words in it than all the rest put together, but that Mandisa does it really well and has a good spirit (no pun intended, I'm sure). It didn't have *that* many words, and I wouldn't go so far as to say she sang *really* well, but it was good. She wore the most unflattering outfit yet, jeans (again) and a crochet-style top. Her background singers were rather pathetic, especially during the semi-a cappella part (as in, you feel like you're supposed to clap, except they sound depressed!). Overall meh. Randy agreed, though he really like the last 4 "bars." Paula went on about Mandisa "can sing," but said "I don't know" about the song. Simon just said it was horrible (and again was booed).

Elliott: "If Tomorrow Never Comes" (Garth) - Kenny said he has a tendency to oversing and encouraged him to sing more "simply" and "make them cry." Well I didn't cry, but he did sing it fairly unadorned (compared to his usual style, anyway) and it was very enjoyable, because it showcased the tone of his voice very well. (I suppose for anyone who hates his voice, it was awful.) Still, it wasn't as good as I'd hoped. Randy said that "finally the competition started," and it was "hot." Paula loves that Elliott is humble and understated and said it was a good song choice for his voice. (Um, yeah, but how was the actual *performance*?) Simon agreed that it was a good choice but then went on to say that it was safe and somewhat hesitant. He didn't think the vocal was great though it was better than the other two that have already sung tonight. (Note: I threw a few votes in for Elliott, and hardly got any busy signals. Could he be in trouble??)

Paris: "How Do I Live?" Kenny said something about how for being so small, Paris sings really "big." I love her hair tonight, it's short & straight. Wish I could say I loved her singing, but it was probably her weakest yet. When she went high it was great & showcased her range, but otherwise just "good" (which for her is weak). Randy said he could tell it was a tough song to sing and thought it was meh; Paula didn't see her connecting with the song and thought she "struggled" to "own the stage" like she normally does; Simon went the other direction and said it was "very good," an "excellent choice," and that it was like "early Dionne Warwick."

Now things start getting better and meeting expectations. Actually, all the guys slowed things down & mellowed out tonight. It worked for most of them, including...

Ace: "I Wanna Cry" (Keith Urban) - Whew! He needed to pull off something different & great to stick around, and I think he did it. Kenny talked about how he is very passionate, and thought his song choice was the best "match" of singer to song of the whole group. With that set-up one wants it to be good... and it was. He sat on a stool for the whole performance, and while he brought his hand to his chest 2 or 3 times (less than normal), he never stretched it out toward the camera once, not even at the end! Someone's listening to fan (&/or non-fan) feedback! Good for him. The light note toward the end was 'pitchy,' but the falsetto was perfect, and not overblown. Randy said he was bored but did like the falsetto at the end; Paula said it was a good choice, contemporary, and a nice "take" on the song, but I think she was also disappointed he didn't do more falsetto (because that's his trademark, or whatever - um, no, not really). Simon said his past few song choices were bad but this week's was good! I tried voting for Ace on & off for the whole 2 hours, and literally did not get through more than two or three times until the last 15 minutes. I'm crossing my fingers that's a good sign.

Kellie: "Fancy" (Reba) - Well, this starts out with Ryan attempting to address the "Is she really that naive?" issue, and he point blank asked her if the naivete was real, and she totally beat around the bush talking about how she saw articles with people making fun of her about the calamari and that she really didn't know what it was. He then asked if what people are seeing is the real her, and she said yes. Heh, I still don't think so. (Exhibit A, for those of you who think she is - according to one newspaper article, she had her hairstylist from home come out to California to do her hair. It's someone she's been using for several years now. The real kicker: his rate is $300/session.) On to the performance... I didn't catch all of Kenny's comments but he did say it was a "perfect" choice for her, and I agree, on several levels. She was really, *really* good! Definitely the best so far. Randy said it was "great," a good song choice, and "her element." Paula agreed that Kellie had "a great night." Simon said he didn't like it personally but acknowledged it was a "good performance."

Chris: "Making Memories of Us" - Kenny says it's a hard song (in general or for Chris? not sure). Chris tells us that his whole family likes country music and in going rock he was "the rebel." He sat for part of the song and was mellow, just singing and focusing on the words. (I believe he sang this song to his wife at their wedding?) It's a very pretty song, and he actually sings country very well! Overall it was awesome. The crowd, Randy & Paula agreed; Simon said it was a bad choice & boring.

Katharine: "Bringing Out the Elvis (In Me)" (Faith Hill I guess; I don't know it) - Kenny said the song fits her personality, and Kat talked about how she didn't know much country so wanted something more "bluesy." I guess this qualifies; it's kind-of sultry and fun all at once, which fits her perfectly. The vocal was great; she's definitely "back"! And the crowd loved it. Randy said it was "very nice"; Paula said "that's your niche"; and Simon was honest, saying "I don't know what to say..." & that the song was strange (his exact wording was more descriptive but that was the idea; I'll get it upon rewatch tomorrow). Kat was like, "Oh, you just don't like country music, that's ok, just say it, it's ok!" which was kind-of cute.

Bucky has the pimp spot?!?!! Ok, cool, I think... he sings "Best I've Ever Had," by Gary Allen, and I don't 'know' it but it sounds a little familiar. He starts back by the band looking up at the overhead camera... and boy does know how to play to the cameras!! I thought it was great; I really enjoyed the beginning where he had a lot of country 'inflections,' more than the later part which was a little thin & rough, though not bad in any way (on key and enunciated better, I think Kenny worked w/him on that too). Randy said it was pitchy at the beginning but he worked it out; Paula didn't say anything worth remembering; Simon said he's "not an expert" (ha!) but it sounded pretty good. Go TeaBiscuit!!!!! (Oh, I voted, he had some busy but not tons.)

I predict Mandisa, Elliott, and Paris for the bottom 3, though Taylor could slip in also. Mandisa will probably go home.

Top 10 Results

Ok, a quick one as I realized I never did this yet! Highlights: Justin Guarini in the audience, and everyone's jaws dropping when it was down to Katharine & Bucky for the "which one is safe & which is in the bottom 3?" game, and Bucky was safe! Also that Lisa was so upbeat despite going home; she had definitely prepared herself for the probability.

Bottom 3: Ace (sent back to couches 1st), Katharine (the "big shocker," except not really), and Lisa, who went home. At least she got a full sing-out, and the others came out on stage with her.

Oh, and the low? Unless you're a big Shakira fan, the guest performance. In keeping with the "21st Century" theme Shakira & Wyclef Jean performed (I was bored). So, no Idol group performance and the commercial wasn't that great either, though Bucky did get shown playing (or at least pretending to play) his guitar. :-)