Ah, Memphis. Memphis, Tennessee. Home of the blues and Elvis Presley. One would think that Memphis would be a bastion of talent for American Idol,
full of great, undiscovered singers who just need that one break that would allow them to set the world on fire. But, unfortunately, this is an American Idol
audition episode, and we all know what that means. A few nuggets of gold surrounded by a whole sea of crap.
Not to sound terse, but these audition episodes are really starting to test my faith in the competence of the people of our country. Are these the people who (some already adults) are going to be growing up and making important decisions? Are these people pro-creating? I know (well, I hope) that lots of these hopeless contestants are acting, simply pulling a joke, wanting to be on TV. But, the problem is, they all feel genuine. And, don't kid yourselves, this is a problem.
What's worse: pure, general, unadulterated ineptitude, or a shameless, self-delusional obsession with fame? I think that a youthful obsession with fame is probably more harmless (again, I hope) and that this is the overriding motivation for a majority of the untalented contestants.
Anyway, here's a look at the action which occurred in the great city of Memphis. I have stepped off my pedestal and am ready to give a (relatively) objective take on the American Idol
: Memphis auditions:
Frank and Beans:
The first audition of the episode, he showed up with a full marching band, and announced that his nickname was "Frank and Beans". He had a pretty good voice, but his performance was super-annoying and the judges told him so.
The Lifeless Tameeka:
Tameeka had no emotion and crazy eyes. A weird combo, not scary, but definitely off-putting. Seacrest did his best to prod something interesting out of her, but failed. Her performance was similarly emotionless and, compounded by a bad voice, she was shown the door.
Preposterously Torn Jeans Guy:
With the silliest jeans known to man, Christopher had the this squeaky, thin voice and he accentuated every line of his song with a "Yeah, yeah, yeah." Really awkward.
I don't want to say anything. No matter what I say it will be mean. Huge, huge gums with full braces. She could barely speak, let alone sing.
The best audition of American Idol
this year. Like Taylor Hicks, but cooler and better. Seriously. He may win the whole thing. Bluesy, booming voice. Incredible.
Wandera, the Flip Out Specialist:
Wandera was pretty good, but as the judges admitted, nothing at all special. They gave her honest feedback, and she did not take it very well. When she left the audition, she flipped out, started crying and pushed the camera out of her face.
"So Much Emotion" Travis:
Before going in, Travis claimed that, "There will be so much emotion in the room, the judges won't know how to deal with it." Okay, I don't know what I was expecting, but it wasn't what came out of his mouth. It wasn't rapping, it wasn't talking, it was...maybe like really bad Def Poetry Jam. I was confused and so were the judges.
Bad Hair Danielle:
This younger blonde was, to me, an annoying performer. Her voice was very soulful, she was likable and the judges put her through to Hollywood.
Paula's Biggest Fan:
This big fat guy was recently left by his wife; he also digs Paula. After his failed audition (he was pretty good), he said he was going to go to the bar and start drinking, then do some karaoke. Fair enough.
Wardrobe Malfunction Girl:
With her boobs doing their best to free themselves from her revealing top, this girl was a nightmare from the beginning. She used the word "confidentiality" to describe her confidence. Do you need to know more?
This long-bearded hippie sad that people either say he looks like Jesus Christ or Osama Bin Laden. There's probably some symbolism there, but I won't get into it. He also said, "In some ways, we're all homeless," which is the kind of quote that makes me hate hippies. He was a really good singer with a lot of soul and an interesting delivery and he's through to Hollywood.
This professional back-up singer had the best female voice of the competition so far. She lacked confidence, and isn't a looker, but she fits the Jennifer Hudson mold.
Real-Life Dave Chappelle Skit:
This guy looked like he was joking. Chipped front teeth, thin as a rail, and wearing a suit with a green dress shirt, he sang some Elvis and was really bad.
This shaved head dude was informed the morning of his audition that his second child had been born. He stayed to try out, however, and after a poor start, won over Randy and Paula.
Another extremely entertaining hour of American Idol
. I'll be back again tonight and tomorrow with looks at tonight's New York auditions on American Idol
-Oscar Dahl, BuddyTV Senior Writer