Original Air Date: Jan 15, 2014
Patricia Morris Buckley – Sr. Staff Writer
The producers of Idol promised a different show this year and – surprise – they actually delivered with tonight’s season premiere.
This was Idol without tons of weirdos, judges fighting and dragging backstories. The auditions whipped by at a nice speed, we heard primarily good voices, the judges didn’t send everyone through and I was entertained.
Nice job, Idol.
All three seemed to get along, liking to laugh together. They disagreed sometimes, but didn’t take stabs at each other. Keith liked to point out someone is cool. Harry was a little more pointed with comments, including telling one contestant that even auto tune wouldn’t help. He was funny. JLo could be hard on some, softer on others.
Best of all, they told singers when they were good, but needed work. That’s what’s been missing from this show. When a singer just needed to mature, it’s better they wait than letting them go far, but get stopped.
So we got no exploding singers, judges storming off or people in weird outfits. Oh, and lots of singers brought a musical instrument, which seemed an advantage.
There were plenty of wailers, nose singers and imitators, but a few contestants stood out.
Sam Woolf- 17 – He’s a sweet-looking boy who is being raised by his grandfather. He’s a WGWG, but cute and even Keith pointed out his great pitch. I’ll definitely be watching for him in Hollywood.
Ethan Thompson — 23 – He’s another WGWG, a bit of a stringpole with nerdy clothes. But damn, he sounded almost radio ready from this audition.
Lindsey Pedicone – 18 – I like those who don’t try to push it and she showed real subtlety and maturity.
Kaitlyn Jackson – 15 – She risked singing a good original song, about her grandfather having heart attack. While she needs work on her upper range, she has a nice, strong voice.
Terrica Curry – 20 – She may be this season’s ballad singer.
Austin Percarlo – 17 – He’s a precocious teen who has a stage mother he wants to leave behind. But he had a nice tone, and if he got rid of his affected technique he could be a teeny bopper star.
Keith London – 21 – He’s a WGWG, but with a fun tone and different take. Harry called him “unique,” and that’s it exactly.
Savion Wright- 21 – Said he worked eight years to get there. Played an original song on guitar. A solid performer, he may have a shot.
Munfarid Zaidi – 19 – He adored Harry, but actually nailed a hard song in Harry style. We’ll see if we see him again…
So 25 contestants from Boston and 21 from Austin made it through. More Austin tomorrow, plus San Francisco.
What do you think of the changes? Do you approve of Harry as a judge? Did you spot someone interesting? Give us your TwoCents…