Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Idol Finale

--Results Update- Is anybody surprised? Taylor, as expected, proved to be the most likeable contestant among this year's crop. Whether he is able to turn that into a music/entertainment career of any significance is the big question. I think the other thing people have to wonder about going forward is if rockers like Chris Daughtry, or last year's Bo Bice and Constantine Maroulis will ever be able to win this competition. I tend to doubt it, because a rocker has a tough line to walk. Does he stay a rocker and not perform the obligatory ballads with any conviction? Or does he stray from his rocker tendencies and piss off his rocker following by embracing the pop stuff? Either way, it's tough to do...and still be able to please enough people to win. Pop and ballad singers seem to have a decided advantage, one that will be very tough to overcome. At least the good rockers, even if they don't win, get the exposure that they need to launch a career.

-I will make this as short and sweet as possible, because I know everybody else (almost) in the world is talking about it too.

Here's my take on last night's American Idol finale. The wrong people were in it.

If it had to boil down to a man and a woman, it probably should have been Katharine McPhee and Chris Daughtry. If it was the top two singers of the competition, it probably should have been Chris and Elliott Yamin.

I'm sorry, but for all of his enthusiastic and charismatic stage presence, the man who will undoubtedly win tonight, Taylor Hicks, is not a singer. He's a performer. I've said it before. He's more of a Wayne Newton, Louis Armstrong, or Danny Kaye type. These guys are/were entertainers first, singers second. Hicks is the kind of guy who will do a good show, but you'll never be impressed with his voice.

Katharine, for all the talent that she posesses, is just the opposite. Her voice is great, but she seems distracted and confused, and unable to complete a song without glancing into the audience, or smiling at the wrong time, or something that makes you wonder if she really understands the lyrics she's spitting out.

I boycotted the voting process. Didn't vote. I figured that's the only way I had to protest how this year's season has gone. Taylor will win, but watch for Chris, maybe Elliott, and perhaps Paris Bennett to have the best professional careers.

I have scoured the internet for stories about the Idol finale and am finding, almost without fail, that every story written about it, and comment made by fans about it, contains a reference to Chris Daughtry not being in it, and regret that the final came down to Taylor and Katharine. If the Idol producers are smart, and so far they've been very smart, they will revamp the voting process to make it more open to public scrutiny, and ensure the best talent advances.

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