I will not make a City of Brotherly Love joke about Wednesday’s American Idol auditions
Nothing like sitting down for a casual one-hour audition episode of American Idol and getting smacked in the face in the final five minutes.
While last Thursday’s final performer had a heart-warming story that closed the episode in a river of tears, Wednesday’s final story might have been the most messed up thing Idol’s ever shown.
I don’t know how a contestant casually tells a tragic story of the time he shot and killed his brother when they were kids, but American Idol really did that leaving about a million unanswered questions that are going to need to be answered if John Arthur Greene wants to be known as anything except the Idol Who Shot His Brother.
(And yes, the irony of the story about killing your brother in auditions that are in the City of Brotherly Love was not lost on me)
My guess is JA Greene isn’t moving too deep into the competition because it would put American Idol in the awkward position of getting involved in politics. You can’t have this guy perform week in and week out without blog thinkpieces about gun control and what kind of stance Idol is taking by letting him perform without answering every possible question.
To be fair, Idol is a Fox show and Fox News is about as right-wing a network you’ll find, so I’m gonna guess they’d want to stay away from any gun control questions. Wouldn’t surprise me in the least if Fox identified this as a potential problem and dropped a note to the producers saying “listen, you don’t need to kick this guy out because of his background but maybe you make him sing some impossibly difficult song that forces you to kick him out.”
Now before our jaws hit the floor, the previous 55 minutes a little thin with talent. I don’t know if it was Philadelphia or the editing, but we just didn’t see enough to get excited. The one hour shows are such a tease.
Here’s who did get tickets Wednesday.
“House of the Rising Sun”
Listen, I can’t be the only one who said “who the hell is Brenda K. Starr” and when they heard the song went “ohhhhhh.” My first thought was how she reminded me of Haley Reinhart (maybe Idol’s most underappreciated contestant ever) but her voice was softer. She’s another example of good young talen who would be a great contenst on Season 17 or 18 which will happen when I Powerball and make them continue the show. Wait, I didn’t win? Dammit.
“Love Like Crazy,” Lee Brice
Loved the helmet hair, loved the banter – the “I’m gonna sing my a capella song with a guitar” line might be the best one we’ve ever heard on the show – and the talent is there. He’s got a ton of potential but I just don’t see it coming together quick enough to win Season 15. With some fine tuning he might be able to be a bro-country singer, but not right now. Instead, he’ll have to settle for every chick in rural PA read to give him an old fashioned. #Blessed
PS Keith Urban signing Isaac’s guitar case with a black sharpie was amateur hour. Isaac explained though
— Isaac Cole Music (@IsaacColeMusic) January 14, 2016
“Your Lips Are Movin’” Meghan Trainor
Innocent little chick cracks a couple jokes and I was scrambling to find something nice so I didn’t have to crush a 15-year old’s confidence. Then it turns out she’s 17 and whoops, as soon as she opens her mouth you’re like:
This girl has potential because she’s got attitude and she might be the cutest thing since the time my 20-month old dropped her lunch on the floor, looked at me with a smile and said “sorry, dad.” She’s cheesier than the breakfast sandwiches she serves, but you gotta like how eggstremely confident she is.
(EDITOR’S NOTE: Realized I’ve been spelling her name wrong all week. Whoops)
“Radioactive,” Imagine Dragons
When she said she was a Jenn with two Ns, you knew something was gonna go down. She was either gonna start stripping or be a complete spaceshot and I’m not saying she was high, but she was definitely high. Good thing for Jenn – and bad for the competition – is weed is legal in California so if getting high makes her sing and perform like that, she can smoke all the weed she wants. We call that “The Jason Castro.” Her transformation as a performer was amazing. She’s a complete airhead, sits behind the piano and the second her fingers touch the keys, BOOM, gametime. My assessment was pretty much nailed in this tweet:
“Alone Time,” original
Bottom line, this kids Grandpa had the clap once or twice during the war. I don’t know which war, but one of them he definitely got the clap. For a kid singing an original it wasn’t bad but originals like that make it really tough to read the potential of a contestant. He’s got some talent but not enough to win Season 15. His Grandpa is still badass though.
John Arthur Greene
“Somebody Like You,” Keith Urban
He’s kinda the perfect package for the show. Voice is strong, he’s a WGWG if there ever was one and he has a musical theatre background. That theatre background isn’t something to overlook; it gives him a distinct edge and I’m assuming an ability to understand music a little better than most. His audition was amazing, except for the awkward conversation that went like this in my head
Really interested to see how this plays out because he’s got the good to go far in the show, but I think the backstory is something producers aren’t going to be able to dance around.