This week, the theme for the American Idol
Top 4 is "California Dreamin'" or "Songs from the Golden State." What does that even mean? For the first time this season, I'm dumbfounded. Maybe I'm still sad about the tragic loss of Skylar Laine from the competition. But seriously, what does it mean? Should I look up musical artists from California (born in California? They have a timeshare in California?) and then go through their song catalogs?
Or is it songs ABOUT California? In that case, it could be a lot of Beach Boys and a little Katy Perry/Snoop Dogg. Or maybe it's songs written in California. It could be anything. Well, California needs to get over itself. What about songs from/about Arizona? North Dakota? With such a vast selection, I'm not going to bother with song suggestions. They always pick the wrong ones anyway. Instead, I am going to propose a list of themes I would like to see American Idol take on.
Songs From the Movies
Where is Songs from the Movies this season? Bring back Songs from the Movies! Then I can be upset that no one chose a Kenny Loggins song from Top Gun and I can be delighted when someone tries to sing "Footloose." I just really like Kenny Loggins.
Songs from Glee
I've said it before and I'll say it again. This seems like a no-brainer. Not that two of Fox's most popular shows need to cross-promote each other, but this would be so great. Glee has covered such a wide range of songs, and in such creative ways, why shouldn't American Idol take it on as a theme? As an added bonus, the contestant with the most votes that week could win a guest spot on Glee, since they seem to be just giving those away now.
Guilty Pleasure Week/Songs I'm Embarrassed to Like
This is sort of taking a page out of the Glee Project handbook, but they didn't do it quite right. I want to hear the cheesiest songs made to sound cool. We would also get to know the contestants better because in the clip package they'd have to confess to an unexpected song they love.
Simple: they sing songs from famous divas. Whitney, Mariah, Beyonce, Aretha. Just ask a drag queen, they'll know who to choose for this category. This would not only show off the contestant's vocal ability, but could be a really neat opportunity for the guys to deliver one of those guy-sings-a-girl-song surprises like when Andrew Garcia gave us the acoustic version of "Straight Up."
Songs I Sing in the Shower
Come on, what a fun theme, or a more fun way of doing "contestants' choice." We all do it! When no one is around, I like to sing Whitney Houston while I'm doing the dishes and it sounds terrible, but I imagine that when the contestants indulge in similar practices, it sounds much better.
Like "Divas" week, but with Rat Pack/Crooner songs.
Hall and Oates Week
I love Hall and Oates! They have such a fun song catalog! We could even expand this to Yacht Rock Week.
Draw Songs from a Hat Week
Nigel Lythgoe is always looking for ways to make American Idol more like his other hit, So You Think You Can Dance, so why not draw themes or songs out of a hat as the dancers do? It would be the true test of artistry--CAN you sing anything and make it sound good as the judges say you can?
Floor Candle Lighting Effect Week
You know the lighting/set designers are dying for a week like this. They love those fake floor candles. Or maybe they could put them in some sort of over-decorated dead forest? Or put two actors on a bench on stage next to the contestant? Those things have all worked in the past ...
What themes would you like American Idol to explore? Or do you have any suggestions for "Songs from the Golden State"?
(images courtesy of FOX)