"American Idol" Episode Two of Season Nine: Atlanta Auditions

1/14/2010 Posted by Admin

By our guest blogger, Catherine Fuentes

The second night of "American Idol" auditions in Atlanta showed a return to the over-the-top auditions that I’ve grown to know and love over the years. While there was some great talent discovered in Atlanta, I’d say that by and large, the emphasis in this batch of auditions was on the bad. And for many of these bad contestants, simply saying that they were bad doesn’t even begin to describe how awful they really were. However, bad auditions make audition episodes so great, because we get to hear witty Simon-isms such as “your singing is like a cat barking--it shouldn’t happen.”

While on Tuesday I was incredibly impressed with Victoria Beckham as a guest judge, here I found myself very disappointed in Mary J. Blige. It just goes to show that some of the most talented singers around may not equate to being a helpful or good judge. I felt she offered very little by way of constructive criticism or entertainment, and more often than not, found her reactions to be on the rude side. While I wasn’t missing Paula so much after the Boston auditions, tonight I was. I felt with contestants this bad, and with Mary J. Blige offering little to the table, Paula’s commentary would’ve been welcome. As Lamar Royal, the surly contestant who just didn’t listen to his comments and instead started cursing out the judges, yelled as he got escorted out of the room by security, “Where’s Paula?”

My star of the night was Bryan Walker, the police officer from Tennessee with a powerful voice. As the judges pointed out, Bryan is another perfect example of why we can never judge a person by their appearance as they walk into the room. His voice is so powerful and his personality so likeable, that I feel that Bryan is a contender to make it to the Final 12.

Some of my other picks from tonight to watch out for in the upcoming rounds include Keia Johnson, one of the first performers of the night who showed me that given the right arrangement, the Titanic song is not just tolerable, but good; Jermaine Sellers, a church singer by profession who sang an incredible adaptation of Joan Osbourne’s hit “What If God Were One Of Us?”; and Mallory Haley, a pretty girl who sang one of my favorite songs, “Piece of My Heart,” incredibly well.

I’m curious to see how Vanessa Wolfe, a small town Tennessee girl who jumps off bridges for fun, fares in the Hollywood round. While she had visible talent, her nerves might get the best of her. Simon said she was ill-prepared for the competition, and I have to agree. I love a talented country singer, and know that "American Idol" has been a good springboard for some of the biggest country talents of today, but somehow I think Vanessa might be too country for success in the show.

Entertainment was high in Atlanta, namely in the form of some female contestants who ultimately made it through to the next round. Holly Harden, whose sequined guitar costume complete with tacky novelty sunglasses, actually had a surprisingly strong singing voice. Somewhere between her squeaky speaking voice and her hilarious, over-the-top get up and personality, I wasn’t expecting a soulful sound from her.

I also was particularly entertained by the best friends, Carmen Turner and Lauren Sanders. History (and common sense) told us that a duo audition meant that one would be great, and one would be bad, and that was the case here. While to me, Lauren was halfway decent, Carmen was truly talented, and I look forward to see her in the future without her other half. Another highly entertaining persona with surprising talent was Skiiboski, a man with the American Idol logo shaved into his head and a creepy smooth operator vibe. Antonio Wheeler, aka Skiiboski (a nickname I must point out, was misspelled on his shirt), had a beautiful voice, and gave an incredibly strong Motown audition. My favorite night of the Final 12 is Motown night, and I love a good Motown audition, and Skiiboski served that purpose for me.

Even though I thought there was an upper age limit on "American Idol," the night was capped off with the William Hung of this season, 62-year-old General Larry Platt. Although he was the antithesis of a serious contender, Larry provided some comic relief in a night devoid of great talent. With his hysterical song “Pants on the Ground,” which mocks current terrible fashion trends, Larry Platt seems to have captured the interest of the country. From what I hear, “Pants on the Ground” is already available for download as cell phone ringtones and is the top Twitter trending topic.

  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Technorati
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis
  • MySpace
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • Google
  • Reddit
  • Sphinn
  • Propeller
  • Slashdot
  • Netvibes


  1. thisnthat3 said...

    I shared on Facebook!