As Much As I Love Dolly, These Singers Need Bruce.


The Dude on the Right

Tonight’s mentor was Dolly Parton, and I know if I were there as a contestant I
would be screwed because rather than listening to anything she said I would be
just mesmerized with her, umm, voice.  Yea, her voice.  The only thing
I would be focusing on would be her big, giant, voice.

In any case, these
contestants overcame Dolly’s voices, I mean voice, and here’s how I thought they
did. (And, yes, the opening "April Fool’s Joke" during the she show was really
lame.  If they really wanted to do it right they would have teamed up with
ABC’s "Dancing With the Stars" and have millions of people wondering what was
wrong with their TV sets.)

Let’s go…

Brooke White
 – Sings – "Jolene"
 – A great song for her, and as much as I like her doing the acoustic
guitar thing I think she would be more potent if she wasn’t sitting on the stool
and able to "work" this song more.  She’s already got the fan-base so I
don’t think it will hurt her, but for "American Idol" this needed to be a
"performance" song.

David Cook
– Sings "Little Sparrow"
 – So David, this week, decides to actually do his own arrangement, and
Dolly had nice things to say about it.  The country fans might not like it,
I did, and although the singing was off a bit at time, who the hell cares? 
His confidence is growing and it shows, and for him, I hate to say it, but like
a dude named Daughtry, it might be better if he loses.

Ramiele Malubay
 – Sings – "Do I Ever Cross Your Mind"
 – She sings nice enough, but what a wrong genre for her to be in after
last week’s issues.  She’s not country, and she’s not rock and roll; I
think she needs a "Rihanna Week" to pull her out of her funk.  Sadly she
will probably be gone by that night because even though I like her spunk, but
she still seems scared.

Jason Castro
Sings – "Travelin’ Through"
 – Simple enough song, but I don’t think he has the fan base to keep him
going much longer.  For me I can’t envision him on a big stage, but rather
doing a lot of acoustic shows in the smaller clubs, with fans that love him. 
He hasn’t shown himself to be able to command a 20,000 seater, on a big old

Carly Smithson
– Sings – "Here You Come Again"
– This might sound wrong, sexist, or whatever, but she doesn’t have the look to
pull off this song.  Sure, her voice is good enough, but this song doesn’t
seem to to in her genre of music.  Randy and Paula (especially Paula)
really liked her, but Simon had his issues.  I agree with Simon.

– Sings – "Smokey Mountain Memories"
 – Dolly really loves him, she almost even cried.  Damn, I really like
this young dude, and even though his voice cracked a bit, on the slow songs he
seems to be fantastic.  I still, wish, that he would do something up-tempo
to see if can turn into a true performer instead of just wowing the dudettes.

Kristy Lee Cook
– Sings – "Coat of Many Colors"
 – Please tell me she is going to get off her butt and sing this song to
the audience because she is singing great enough in the country genre. 
Okay, she got up, and is still singing nice enough, but she needs to learn a lot
about performing, and if she wanted to get any mentoring from Dolly it would be
how to be a performer and not a singer – if I were her, for this song, I would
ask Dolly how I could touch her, umm audiences.  Sadly Kristy was boring as

Syesha Mercado
– Sings – "I Will Always Love You"
 – She sings purty enough, and I like her sitting on the piano.  She
comes across better looks-wise this week, but I really wish she could have
pulled off getting her butt off the piano for the ending of the song to really
blast it out for the crowd.  She almost had a chance to blow this song out
of the house, but instead just sang it.

Michael Johns
– Sings – "It’s All Wrong, But It’s All Right"
 – As much as I didn’t like a lot of his carrying on with this song, as a
"performer" and not a singer he was probably the best of the night, and since
Paula talked to long, and my TiVo flipped to "Dancing With the Stars" and "The
Biggest Loser," I’m not sure what Simon said.  Doesn’t matter, he did great
and should stick around until next week when I can re-adjust my TiVo Season
Passes so Idol doesn’t get clipped.

Let’s wrap this up…

The thing that sort of makes me sad is that pretty much everyone on the show
right now is great, or at least good singers, but only a few of them seem to
have the personalities to be performers.  Every one of them you can picture
singing in a smaller club, with a group of fans, but none of them have shown the
step to the next level.  I suppose Dolly Parton week wasn’t the time to see
that (although a lot of them should have gotten tips from her about being a
performer rather than a singer), but if the "American Idol" folks want to truly
groom any of these kids, bring on a Bruce Springsteen as a two-week mentor to
help them become a small-club person, which most of them already are, to a
stadium rocker, which he is.  Pimp The Beatles if you must, but teach them
Springsteen or The Rolling Stones.

That’s it for this one! 
I’m The Dude on the Right!!  L8R!!!