American Idol: who’s got the game face?

At this stage of the season on “American Idol,” you know who wants to win and who could care less. You hope that they all want to win, and probably do, but some just want it more than others. Last night that was made perfectly clear during both rounds of performances. No mentors this time around, just two performances each from Casey James, Lee Dewyze and Crystal Bowersox. They would choose one song, and one or two judges would pick the other. Here is our recap of how it went down, and we’re going to do it differently this week…we will break it down by performer and grade them at the end of our analysis:

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American Idol: whatever, dudes

Thanks to Mr. Will Harris for filling in yesterday on the “American Idol” recap, and my apologies to you that you had to watch the likes of Lacey Brown and Paige Miles perform. You can thank the judges for letting them all through, because I still think they did a lousy job this time around, in many cases picking looks over talent. Then again, that’s how the music business operates these days…..sign someone with looks and auto-tune them into a star. But that’s a topic for another day, so I’ll step down off my soap box now.

On to the guys last night, and after looking back in my notes…there was not one great performance. There also wasn’t one awful performance. All of them were mediocre, some on the side of pretty good and some on the side of not so good. So we’ll do our best to rate them, trying to keep in mind that I totally did not agree with some of the judges’ comments.

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American Idol: more of the same

Fox’s “American Idol” returned last night for the start of its ninth season, and while they can rotate judges and air this show right after Simon Cowell announced he is leaving the show, they can’t change the fact that the talent or lack thereof ultimately drives this thing. Last night was no exception, as we had to endure the first of seven or eight episodes of those initial auditions, showing us the very polarizing best and worst of the lot.

The first auditions were in Boston, and along with Cowell, the other judges were the returning Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi, with Victoria Beckham, a.k.a. Posh Spice, as a guest judge. As we do each season at this time, we’ll try to briefly summarize by separating the best and the worst.

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American Idol alum Jason Castro signs with Atlantic Records

Texas based Jason Castro, the soft-spoken dude with the powerful vocal ability who wowed America on Season 7 of “American Idol” last year, has just signed a deal with Atlantic Records. Castro’s debut album on the label is planned for release later this year.

Atlantic has spared no expense for this project, enlisting heavyweight producer John Field (Soul Asylum, Lifehouse, Switchfood) and songwriters such as current Idol judge Kara DioGuardi (Kelly Clarkson, Jewel, Santana), Martin Terefe (Jason Mraz, KT Tunstall), Sacha Skarbek (James Blunt, Jason Mraz), Guy Chambers (Robbie Williams), and Jason Reeves (Colbie Caillat).

Castro’s performance of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” last season was so powerful that it sold 178,000 digital copies of Jeff Buckley’s version of the song. A few weeks later, Castro’s version of “Over the Rainbow” also hit #1 on iTunes and he finished fourth in the competition, frequently overshadowed by the more popular Davids–eventual champ Cook and runner up Archuleta. Those guys have released their debuts and now Castro takes his turn.

We’ll keep you posted when we know more about the official release date.

  

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