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S17.06: Hollywood Week (1)

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Tensions are high as this year’s crop of hopefuls battles it out in solo and group round performances from the famous stage of The Orpheum Theatre. Helping to guide them through the rigorous week is in-house mentor Bobby Bones. Don’t miss phenomenal performances from returning fan favorites, an emergency trip to the hospital in an ambulance, and a special moment when one lucky contestant receives a heartfelt gift from Luke Bryan.

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And the show did not provide the lyrics in Braille for Shayy to read why?

If a contestant was in a wheelchair, you'd make sure the venue was wheelchair accessible, wouldn't you?  I'm probably giving this show too much credit.

Edited by Ms Blue Jay
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Good question. You're right, they should've done something like that for her. Yay for her making it through, though, along with Myra. 

I'm a little surprised that the guy who wrote the lyrics on his arm got through. I can sympathize with blanking on the lyrics, no matter how much one rehearses, because as the judges note, that can happen to anyone. But having the lyrics on your arm is like having the answers to a test on your arm, you know? Should be a disqualifier, I'd think. 

And I'm also surprised at how some of them don't know some of these songs. I get that a few of the songs are before their time, but...I dunno, there's plenty of songs I know from before I was born ("California Dreamin'" being one of them), and I know many other people who can say the same. And I don't even have any interest in being in the music business. I'd think people who want to make music their career would be a little more knowledgeable about their music history than most. 

And if they don't know a lot about older music, I'd think, once they got their ticket to Hollywood, they'd want to take a moment here and there to expand their musical knowledge a bit, just in case. If these people have watched this show as long as they claim, then they would know that singing older songs is going to be part of the repertoire at some point. 

Also, I like the name Victorious Secret for a group. 

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I would have liked to see more from the group round performances.  There were 98 left after the first round and what did they show us?  Maybe five of the groups?  Are there more tomorrow night?  It sounded like they are going to the solo performances tomorrow.

I wonder if Shay is proficient at Braille yet?  Didn’t she only lose her sight recently?  Yay to her teammates helping and encouraging her!

And Luke giving the one guy his boots—aawww!  But also eewww!

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I always say that 2 days for so-called Hollywood Week is NOT enough.  It's the best part of the show.  It should be 2 weeks at least.  

I was surprised they sent the cowboy home (with the boots).  He's just so loveable.  

I don't get why California Dreamin' is always a staple on this show.  It's simply too old.  But yeah, I didn't really have any sympathy or patience for the guy who kept saying he'd never heard the song before.  No one cares.  You have to learn it regardless.

Edited by Ms Blue Jay
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The group round is always my favorite. As Lionel said, I feel like they really show what a person's made of, especially how hard they're willing to work and how adaptable they are. I disagree with what he said about it being "show business, and you have to give us the show." To me, group night is always "it's show business, and you have to give us the business." How many of these folks are willing or able to WORK?

It always AMAZES me that people can't/won't learn maybe four lines of lyrics, a minimum of choreography, and enough of the rest of the song to do background singing. It makes me wonder how many of these people really only ever work on two or three songs and use them over and over. 

So I was disappointed with the group coverage tonight. They mostly didn't show groups trying to work together (I don't care about the drama, but I did want to see singers learning to harmonize, to work together to sell a song) and just showed a few solos. That's not the point of group night. i didn't like the individual singers singing to the camera that was moving around them on the stage, instead of singing out the audience like they used to. 

Maybe the show has decided that the American Idol winner doesn't need to learn to sing in a group, or doesn't need to try to learn songs quickly. 

eta: I liked Shayy's group and think they all should have gone through. They sounded great.

Edited by Mystery · Reason: I forgot about the group I liked
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I'm a little surprised that the guy who wrote the lyrics on his arm got through. I can sympathize with blanking on the lyrics, no matter how much one rehearses, because as the judges note, that can happen to anyone. But having the lyrics on your arm is like having the answers to a test on your arm, you know? Should be a disqualifier, I'd think.

**********************

That's where I thought Lionel was going when he brought it up:  that it would be a disqualifier.  It should be.  Also?  I don't care how old you are, "California Dreamin'" is an American classic.  You should know it.  This tune is also an excellent opportunity for the groups to showcase how well they can harmonize.  So I can see why it keeps getting chosen by producers.

Speaking of producers and other behind-the-scenes personnel, could those vocal coaches (especially the female) have been any more abusive?  Sure it's an abusive business.  But these are kids, they are still learning and developing as singer/performers.  Is there any need to chide them as if they were three-year-olds caught with their hand in the cookie jar?  I wouldn't be at all surprised to learn that the female coach is a failed singer who delights in treating these kids the way others treated her, when she was trying to make it.  Bitter bitch.

Edited by CatsAndMoreCats
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I was really disappointed with this episode.  Hollywood week has always been my favorite part of the AI.   Why didn't we see the groups singing?  If they'd spent less time showing Katie Perry's antics, maybe they'd had more time to show the groups actually singing.   Did not need to see her stick Kleenex up her nose. Perhaps they are focusing on those that make it through to the live shows.  But I don't like it.

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Is it just me, or did we see even fewer people sing during these first two rounds of Hollywood week than on any previous season?

I see Katy Perry is once again making it all about her.

Damn it, Luke, you shouldn't have given Colby your boots!  I liked his voice.  And I also liked Jade's voice; she should've gone through from her group instead of the over-singing horror that is Myra. 

I thought Dimitrius sounded terrible during the first round, but was really good in group.  I would've put that entire group through, and can't figure out why they sent William home.

Other than that, I saw a few people from whom I wanted to hear more, several more from whom I never want to hear again, and of course, a lot of sob stories which don't interest me at all.  Speaking of which, is the pressure of American Idol (or the music business in general) really a good place for a recovering addict who only has ten months sober?

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9 hours ago, Ms Blue Jay said:

I don't get why California Dreamin' is always a staple on this show. 

Because it's a gorgeous song which allows for solos and great harmonies if the contestants really work on it.

That's part of why I really enjoyed Unexpected Vibes' performance - they nailed their harmonies in a way few groups do.

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1 hour ago, CatsAndMoreCats said:

Speaking of producers and other behind-the-scenes personnel, could those vocal coaches (especially the female) have been any more abusive?  Sure it's an abusive business.  But these are kids, they are still learning and developing as singer/performers.  Is there any need to chide them as if they were three-year-olds caught with their hand in the cookie jar?  I wouldn't be at all surprised to learn that the female coach is a failed singer who delights in treating these kids the way others treated her, when she was trying to make it.  Bitter bitch.

Isn't that Kat McPhee's mom?  I thought I heard the last name applied to the woman with the curly blondish hair.

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5 hours ago, proserpina65 said:

sn't that Kat McPhee's mom?  I thought I heard the last name applied to the woman with the curly blondish hair.

That's Katherine McPhee's sister, who is now feeling insulted 😉

I hope Colby Swift returns next year- I loved his Freddie Fender song. Same with Chloe.

I liked Walker and Alejandro a lot more this time than during their auditions. 

Wade can leave any time. I think his voice is an affectation and not knowing a classic like California Dreaming is ridiculous. He's also (I think) fatter than Ruben Studdard.

Ugh, Myra. Does she know how to turn it down to 10 (or less, preferably)? Also, I read elsewhere that she already WON XFactor/Vietnam in 2016. 

Edited by sempervivum · Reason: added info
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2 hours ago, proserpina65 said:

I thought Dimitrius sounded terrible during the first round, but was really good in group.  I would've put that entire group through, and can't figure out why they sent William home.

I totally agree with you about Dimitrius.  When Katy called his Mom and had her hand over her head, looking down, I thought it was she couldn't bear his awful performance.  Maybe they let him through out of sympathy for what he's going through with his Mom? But that wouldn't make sense because they eliminated so many sob stories.

As to your second sentence here, I also agree.  The judges seemed to make it a point that they HAD to eliminate 1 person per group, even if the entire group was amazing.  That really bothered me.  The judges of yore (J Lo Keith Harry) never did that.

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Lauren (the one whose husband died) didn't do so hot in her solo round. I was rooting for her, but I wound up with secondhand embarrassment. My kids don't get Myra's screaming. I don't either.

Re: Bootgate...I have a soft spot for Colby. He seems like a sweet kid and even though he kept referring to the Freddy Fender song by the wrong title (it's "Before the Next Teardrop Falls", not "Every Teardrop Falls"), I actually like his voice. I'm a traditional country fan and I'd listen to him. LB giving him his boots, though, bothered me. When someone makes such a big show out of giving someone something like that, I question their motives. If Wade was going to make it through, though, then I think Colby should have as well. IMO the only reason Wade made it is because the rest of his group jumped in there and saved him, whereas Colby (who did eventually pick it back up) just kind of floundered. I wish they'd have given him another chance, though. I'd like to have seen him with more experience. 

I say the same thing at Hollywood Week every season: those groups who work together to sound like an actual group have more chance of getting ALL the members through than those who treat it like 4 solos stuck with the same chorus. Four mediocre singers who harmonize well and bring the energy are almost almost more likely to make it through than 2 great singers and 2 below average who won't work together. Juan Pablo was kind of being a prick. 

I thought Chloe was just as good as some of the other girls who got put through, though I am still heartbroken that Billy Dean showed up on my television screen as an accompanist to an American Idol audition. 

Edited by mamadrama · Reason: I don't know how I got "Erica" out of "Lauren{
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Just when I thought ABC could not make me hate the reboot of this show more than I already do, they gave me very little group singing on group night and gave me more Bobby Bones. Ugh.

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7 hours ago, proserpina65 said:

Isn't that Kat McPhee's mom?  I thought I heard the last name applied to the woman with the curly blondish hair.

FWIW, their mother's name is Peisha McPhee.  She sings standards from the Great American Songbook.  Mainly in San Francisco venues.  Don't know if she travels outside of that area.

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18 hours ago, Ms Blue Jay said:

I was surprised they sent the cowboy home (with the boots).  He's just so loveable.  

Loveable doesn't make you Idol material, though.  He's a great guy, but needs to come back next year. Take care of those boots.

8 hours ago, proserpina65 said:

Speaking of producers and other behind-the-scenes personnel, could those vocal coaches (especially the female) have been any more abusive?  Sure it's an abusive business.  But these are kids, they are still learning and developing as singer/performers

Kids that age go into the military and have to grow up fast.  It's hard to fathom that The Beatles became so well-known in their teens and early twenties, but they went through the same kinds of tough situations (worse, actually).  They came out okay financially, for sure.

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1 hour ago, Babalooie said:

Loveable doesn't make you Idol material, though.  He's a great guy, but needs to come back next year. Take care of those boots.

So all the WGWGs who won their seasons were actually the most talented and adorability didn't factor in at all?  If so that would be major news to me.  I don't even know what to say to that "At least this isn't wartime" analogy.  The teachers are needlessly abusive.  There is literally no need for abuse.

Edited by Ms Blue Jay

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43 minutes ago, Ms Blue Jay said:

So all the WGWGs who won their seasons were actually the most talented and adorability didn't factor in at all? 

My point was that NO, lovability should NOT be the criteria - WGWG, Purple Alien, or Asian leprechaun.

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I honestly thought that Colby Swift was just as good as some of the other ones they let through in the group rounds-and better than at least two. 

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20 hours ago, Ms Blue Jay said:

So all the WGWGs who won their seasons were actually the most talented and adorability didn't factor in at all?  If so that would be major news to me.  I don't even know what to say to that "At least this isn't wartime" analogy.  The teachers are needlessly abusive.  There is literally no need for abuse.

A fun fact from Season 2 (Reuben, Clay, etc.).  You may remember legendary singer/songwriter Neil Sedaka was the mentor and celebrity judge for the semi-finals.  He initially planned to be brutally honest in his assessment of each performance.  His son, who is a screenwriter and presumably knows a thing or two about how brutal the business is, cautioned his father to reconsider.  Marc, the son, reminded him that about 38 million people were watching.  Did Neil Sedaka really want viewers to watch him eviscerate a bunch of kids on national television? 

Sedaka did indeed reconsider.  You may remember the rest of the story.  It's not that Sedaka soft-pedalled his comments to the contestants during judging.  But he was mindful of the impact of what he said.  Clay Aiken sang Sedaka's "Solitaire."  It went white-hot on the charts later that year.  And Neil Sedaka, who had already had two music biz comebacks and certainly didn't need the extra income, was suddenly "back" for a third run of fame.  Nice wins.

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I just don't understand how someone can't learn a song. I do get that under pressure, the lyrics might leave your head, but these are pretty much always easy songs, and they really only have to learn a few lines to sing on their own. If they can't handle that, they are in the wrong business.

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10 hours ago, ForReal said:

I just don't understand how someone can't learn a song. I do get that under pressure, the lyrics might leave your head, but these are pretty much always easy songs, and they really only have to learn a few lines to sing on their own. If they can't handle that, they are in the wrong business.

To me, that's sort of the method behind the madness. If they can't handle the sleep deprivation and stress at this point when they're relatively fresh and rested, then they probably won't make it for the long haul. I think Idol is as much a mental competition as it is a singing competition.

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On 3/27/2019 at 7:45 AM, ForReal said:

I just don't understand how someone can't learn a song.

This always bothers me too. Just download it to your phone, get in a corner by yourself for an hour listening to it non stop and trying to sing it until you have it and then reconvene once everyone knows the words. Of course, this method would not produce any drama for the show........

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