Tuesday, January 30

AI Birmingham Auditions

Tonight we have 11,000 people (more than auditioned in all cities together for Season 1, I learned last weekend on Idol Rewind!) gathered in the city home to Ruben, Bo, and Taylor! Yet only 20 of these advance to Hollywood...

The no's, briefly:
Erica Skye (19, AL) sang "Unchained Melody" country style
Diana Walker (27, very large gal) "Saving All My Love for You"
Margaret something-or-other, the one in the Big Bird shirt

The yes's:

Katie Bernard (19, FL, #24710) has a very high, childish talking voice but sings with a full, lower voice. Her "A House is Not a Home" leads Randy & Paula to put her through, despite Paula's hesitation that she's a young newlywed who should focus on her marriage instead of chasing fame.

Tatiana McConnico (17, GA, #15167) attends a performing arts high school, which makes me expect her to actually have talent... and she does! I don't know the song she did but it was soul and good.

Bernard Willams, II (26, local, #12729) sings "Rock with You" and is very good. We're getting a lot of fairly attractive, R&B/pop style guys this year. Paula says no because she thought he was off key, but the guys heard what I did and he advances.

There are very short clips of 3 girls advancing, one named Nellie Mae? We don't get to hear them sing at all though.

Jamie Lynn Ward (16, NC, #23028) has a story worse than Kellie Pickler's and is also a blond from a tiny town in NC. Hmm. She sings "Reflection" and is a bit nasal but has potential. The story: her dad caught her step-mom cheating ("in the act") and shot her, then himself. He survived and is now paralyzed. Jamie and her father live with Jamie's grandmother, who takes care of them. Randy & Paula say yes and she advances.

Last on Day 1 is Chris Sligh, the curly-haired guy from the promos (missed his age but he's from Greenville, SC, #2?994). He has a hilarious dry sense of humor. He says people tell him he looks like Jack Osborne but he looks in the mirror and sees... Christina Aguilera! (He's chubby and has dark, curly hair.) Later when asked why he's here he says that he wants to make David Hasselhoff cry again! (referencing the shot of him in the audience after Taylor's win last year.) He sings "Kiss from a Rose" and has a very good voice, plus he's very passionate about singing and really puts his all into it. Ok, this is the first person that I really *want* to make Top 12. I love his voice and really enjoy his personality. Hope I don't jinx him!

15 or 16 made it through on Day 1 and we saw 6 of them; not too bad. However, not only do we not see Paula on Day 2, we don't see anyone advance! There were only 4 or 5 (making a grand total of 20 from Birmingham), and we got another very short montage of the golden ticket excitement, but no singing.

The no's, if anyone cares:
Victoria Watson (18, FL, 6-foot long hair) who I thought sang "You Raise Me Up" well enough to advance, but she doesn't (advance).

Lakia, who thanks the judges even though they criticize her, as do many more in a montage we're shown - or, at least it's edited to appear that way! The point being that most southerners are polite instead of brash & argumentative.

Nicole G. (17, OK, has team of supporters in pink shirts) sings "Something to Talk About" but is nasal & old-fashioned; they say she's not ready.

And Brandy Patterson, this year's murderer of "Like a Virgin." She's not horrible, but is bad, and blames the wood floor. She apparently really amuses Simon so he lets her try again on the carpet. Alrighty then.

Next stop: LA!

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