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The Voice: Finale, Season 8, 5/19/15

May 20th, 2015 · No Comments

by Lyn Jensen

Sawyer Fredericks is barely 16 and hasn’t even left his family’s farm yet, but he’s the winner of The Voice, season 8.  He already has several iTunes hits, a contract waiting with Republic Records, a new hit single courtesy of his idol Ray LaMontagne, an appearance singing on the Voice finale with his other idol John Forgerty, and has been awarded with a ruby-colored 2016 Nissan Maxima (not even on the market yet) for his first car.  He may be on the way to becoming the biggest star The Voice has ever produced, provided the music industry knows what to do with him.  On Monday night Adam Levine advised him, “don’t lose the purity and sanctity of what you are,” which likely means, don’t turn into Justin Bieber.  (Sorry, Beiberites!)

Here’s Sawyer’s Web site, which needs updating:

http://www.sawyerfredericks.com/

Here’s the link to the video of “Please,” his debut single penned by LaMontague:

http://www.nbc.com/the-voice/video/sawyer-fredericks-music-video-please/2866953?onid=232466#vc232466=1

Picking the absolute right song for his final performance (“Old Man” below) didn’t hurt either:

As for Fredericks’ fellow contestants, Meghan Linsey placed second, Joshua Davis, third, and Koryn Hawthorne, fourth. Pharrell Williams got his first Voice trophy, meaning three guys will be bragging about their Voice trophies next season.  (Even if Usher returns, he’s got a Voice trophy, too.)

Here’s the luxury sports sedan Fredericks won, great for a simple farm boy’s first car:

http://www.nissanusa.com/cars/2016-maxima/

Before the final results were announced, the Final Four got their choice of four different models of Nissans.  Family man Davis got the Rogue, country queen Linsey took the Murano (Blake Shelton tried to bum a ride in it), high school student Hawthorne took the Altima, and that left Fredericks with the high-end choice–rather like the outcome of the evening.

Fredericks will be on the Today show Thurs. if you want a little post-season Voice analysis. After that, we’ll wait for the judges’ bickering to begin again with season 9.

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The Voice: Final Four of Season 8, 5/18/15

May 19th, 2015 · No Comments

by Lyn Jensen

They’ve sung, we’ve voted, and now we wait to see who wins season 8 of The Voice. Internet consensus is hyping teen WGWG Sawyer Fredericks as the front-runner, but Meghan Linsey has the country vote–always a major factor in these contests.  Voters could also decide veteran WGWG Joshua Davis, a family man, is who needs the top prize, a Republic Records contract. Then there’s Koryn Hawthorne, an unknown factor.  She wasn’t voted into the final field of twelve, but she’s never been below the cut, despite a series of shaky performances.

In this format that’s like a sporting event for music, judges win, too. They’re not just judges, they’re the contestants’ coaches and team leaders.  Blake Shelton could win his fifth Voice trophy, Adam Levine his third, or Pharrell Williams could confound them both and win his first. (Wouldn’t that make for a super-competitive season 9?)

Last night–Monday–contestants had three more chances to pull votes their way. They interpreted one last cover selected by their team judge, sang one duet with their judge, and debuted a song specifically selected to be their first single release should they win. (Their “first” single, of course, is somewhat relative, as all finalists have been charting regularly on iTunes over the season.)  We were treated to some amazing moments–and some missteps, too.

First Round:

1-1.  Koryn Hawthorne (Team Pharell) covers “It’s a Man’s World,” a popular choice for these singing contests because it allows for many different interpretations. After several shaky previous outings, she finally sings like she deserves to be in the final four. If she’d sung this well every time, her chances would be taken more seriously. Pharrell heartily encourages her (as he does his other teenage team member, Sawyer) and it’s paid off for him, with his two awkward teens proving to be the top discoveries of this season. After the performance, Blake says plainly, “Your best performance yet.” Pharrell comments how his teen pop princess controlled the band–and the room.

1-2.  Meghan Linsey (Team Blake) debuts a song she co-wrote, “Change My Mind.” She says it’s about empowering women, how they don’t have to change for a guy. Blake tells his fellow Nashville veteran how she’s made her first step as a solo artist, regardless of whether she wins or not.  He coaches her, “we’ve got to understand every word … all the frustration you felt with this guy … dump it all in.” He calls her a soul singer–but she’s country soul (and that helps explain her other songs tonight). Blake especially likes her performance. “That hook is so strong, so powerful,” he says. “You want me to change so I’ll change–my mind.” It’ll be interesting to see how well the country-music industry responds to her now.

1-3.  Sawyer Fredericks and Pharrell flashback to the seventies for a folksy half-forgotten Seals & Croft ballad, “Summer Breeze.” It’s staged in a funky seventies style, too, with people sitting on rugs while playing instruments. It’s like a jam on somebody’s porch on a summer day, and even the audience joins in.

1-4.  Joshua Davis (Team Adam) debuts a song he wrote, “Working Man’s Hymn,” where his similarity to Springsteen–a very reserved Springsteen–shows. Adam likes the way the song isn’t just another love song but rather takes on something bigger. Unfortunately whenever Davis rocks, the music tends to overwhelm the subtleness of his voice–but Adam sure likes what he’s hearing! Adam says the song’s fantastic, and Blake complains it’s already stuck in his head. It should do well on iTunes, where the recording shows a better balance between vocals and music than this live performance did.

Second Round:  

2-1. Sawyer Fredericks (Team Pharrell) talks with Pharrell about how he’s picked up “a lot” of Ray LaMontagne’s guitar and style. Now LaMontagne’s provided him a love song, “Please,” for his debut single. As Adam observes, that would be like Eddie Vedder giving him a song when he was 16. The bluesy song allows Sawyer to show his emotional as well as his vocal range. “I got to watch someone’s dream come true,” says Pharrell.  We all did.

2-2.  Koryn Hawthorne and Pharrell go back to the seventies (again, as with Sawyer) to reinterpret Stevie Wonder’s version of “We Can Work it Out.” We see a sign of Koryn faltering at the end, though–she’s had her peak moment already tonight.

2-3.  Joshua Davis offers his interpretation of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.” It’s a favorite choice for these TV singing contests because it allows for interpretations on multiple levels.  It can be inspirational, cynical, or–in Davis’ style–a love song. This time we get to hear his vocals up front. During judges’ comments, Christina praises his versatility. Adam talks about timing and an “uncontrollable bubbling over of passion.”

2-4.  Meghan Linsey and Blake take on Shelton’s love of eighties’ music–trying to turn Aretha Franklin’s “Freeway of Love” into country soul. This song is so unchallenging, though–does anybody really know what it’s saying?  You’re writing love songs about a freeway or–just what kind of freeway are you writing songs about?

Third Round:

3-1. Joshua Davis and Adam dig deep in the Paul Simon catalog and channel their inner Simon & Garfunkel for “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes.” It demonstrates how their voices are oddly similar.

3-2.  Koryn Hawthorne has the honor of having Pharrell Williams write a song for her, titled, “Bright Fire.” Even though the judges stay positive, she’s obviously falling short here.  Her first performance of the night was by far her best. Chance of her finishing any better than fourth looks very dim now.

3-3.  Meghan Linsey gets a disastrous song choice, “When a Man Loves a Woman.”  This performance only serves to demonstrate she’s no Kimberly Nichole or India Carney or even Koryn Hawthorne. She comes off as loud and shrill, not big and bluesy. If she wins, it’ll be despite this performance, not because of it. (Blake thinks she had the performance of the night but he’s biased.)

3-4.  Sawyer Fredericks is the only Voice contestant this season who’s made the top ten of iTunes every week, so he’s fairly obviously the front-runner. Pharrell’s song choice is brilliant–allowing Fredericks to give Neil Young’s “Old Man” a teen perspective. Sawyer says the song shows many different feelings–wanting to connect with one’s father but being angry, too. (He’s careful to say he’s never felt that way about his own father. ) In Fredericks we could be witnessing the birth of a new type–a teen idol pin-up who dwells in the stripped-down acoustic scene. Afterwards, Christina praises how well Pharrell worked with Sawyer, especially considering how the boy could have paired with Adam or Blake. Adam offers major advice, “the purity and sanctity of what you are–don’t ever lose that.”

So whoever wins, The Voice has introduced us to some major new talents this season. People sometimes complain about how they don’t hear much about the talent afterward–but that depends to an extent how closely fans follow their faves long after the season’s over.

 

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The Voice: Season 8, Five Semi-finalists, 5/11/15

May 12th, 2015 · No Comments

by Lyn Jensen

We’ve heard American Idol is leaving us in 2016, but I know I saw on some Internet stream that The Voice will be leaving us in 2016, too.  Time will tell if that’s true or false, but for now let’s look at the five semi-finalists’ performances of season 8. All the judges are down to one contestant each, except for Pharrell Williams, who has two.  One contestant will be eliminated tonight and four singers will advance to the final round next week.

1-A.  Joshua Davis (Team Adam):  Two throwback folksingers are in the top five, and Adam’s folk-rocker makes an emotional song choice, “I Can’t Make You Love Me,” a pretty, folksy ballad just right for a tenor with an acoustic guitar. (It’s a bluesy Bonnie Riatt song.) Adam praises the subtlety of it.

1-B.  Koryn Hawthorne (Team Pharrell):  Koryn’s the last contestant whose judge saved her from elimination–the other remaining contestants were all voted into the top twelve. Pharrell provides a strange interpretation of her song selection, U2’s complex multi-layered, “One.” He says it’s about social injustice.  Her performance, however, is more about doing injustice to a song.  Her singing falls so far short of Bono–or anybody else who can sing–it’s pathetic. She’s loud, pitchy, flat in places, and has no range at all. If this performance doesn’t send her home, then the vote tally will be very hard to explain.  However, the judges are hearing something else. “Awesome!” Adam raves, “Fantastic job!” Pharrell sidesteps criticism, instead talking about how inspiring Hawthorne is, which is his usual fallback line.

1-C. Meghan Linsey (Team Blake):  Instead of her usual Southern-fried fare, Blake’s Nashville vet has countrified “I’m not the Only One,” a sultry ballad by gay British alt-rocker Sam Smith. The performance shows both sides of her style–one is subtle, and the other is more powerhouse, more rock-flavored.  Blake says he wanted to, “hand her a song she can power herself through emotionally … heart and soul.” Pharrell acknowledges how far she can stretch herself, with, “You just reminded everyone there are so many genres of music that live in Nashville now.”  Blake sums up, “Meghan is 29 but it’s like she came from a different time, bringing something vintage” to contemporary material.

1-D.  India Carney (Team Christina):  Carney’s major strength is how she can hit big operatic notes without resorting to screaming.  Christina assigns her “Gravity,” saying, “It’s a singer’s song” that needs tenderness and passion. After the performance, Adam says it was “coolest” the way she scaled the beginning back and then let it build. Blake says her softness at the end (after the climax) was the most powerful part.

1-E. Sawyer Fredericks (Team Pharrell):  As this season’s teen phenomenon does so often, Fredericks finds the contemporary relevance in decades-old songs, and tonight it’s the sixties’ protest song, “For What it’s Worth.”  Pharrell finds links to the larger world, talking about how songs like this carry a message forward, how they can help us evolve as a society.  About the performance, Adam says, “I applaud both of you for that song, it sounds current, you did it justice.” Then he keeps interrupting Blake every time the country singer says a word. Blake finally gets out, “Great job, Man!”  Pharrell just encourages the audience to let their applause be the commentary.

For the second half of the show, the singers visit their hometowns, to which they dedicate their second performances.

2-A.  Joshua Davis visits the small town of Traverse City, Michigan, then puts his Springsteen-like voice and a jaunty edge to Dylan’s “When I Paint My Masterpiece.” Adam and Blake are half-forgetting about the performances by this point. Blake says he doesn’t know the song. Adam says, “It’s by The Band!” Blake shoots back, “Yeah, I heard the band, they’re great!”

2-B.  Koryn Hawthorne is from a water tower town in Louisiana, and she’s still in high school. She does an Aretha Franklin spiritual, “Oh Mary Don’t You Weep,” which at least suits her style and range more than the U2 song did. However, she’s still loud and pitchy, and so many singers have done church music this season, The Voice is beginning to look a lot like a religious broadcast.  The judges avoid criticizing the performance afterwards. Adam talks about Hawthorne’s “drastic unbelievable journey.” Pharrell talks about God.

2-C.  Meghan Linsey goes back to Nashville, where A-list stars (Big and Rich, Naomi Judd) welcome her. She’s plainly moved up a few levels in the Nashville hierarchy thanks to her time on The Voice. She then puts on her smoky, bluesy barroom style for a Nashville classic, George Jones’ “Tennessee Whiskey.” Blake tells her afterwards, “I know what just happened.  You just engaged all the Nashville fans.” That base may come through for Team Blake once again, but Linsey’s already achieved what she wanted–the next stage of her career.

2-D.  India Carney attends UCLA, but she’s from New York. Her power is effortless, but she wastes it on “Earth Song,” one more church song on a season already overloaded with them. It’s an inspirational spiritual that comes from deep in the Michael Jackson catalog. She may get the Christian vote but not all music fans are Christians. The judges find her singing to be beautiful, however. Adam says her range of emotions are like a “little mini-musical every time.” Christina agrees, saying, “It’s like watching a storybook unfold before your eyes.” India’s barely squeaked by these past few weeks and she hasn’t dug out of that rut with either of her performances tonight.

2-E.  Sawyer Fredericks returns to his family’s farm outside the village of Coltonville, New York. For his hometown’s dedication, he finds room in his style for something more contemporary and sophisticated.  He takes on Christina Perri’s “1000 Years,” and he makes it sound ready for alternative radio playlists.  After the performance, Adam raves about how Fredericks’ voice can fill any room, anywhere. Blake voices the obvious, “Clearly the front-runner!  You’re the real deal. Congratulations!” Pharrell, the teen’s lucky coach, says the contestant has a generosity that he shares with everybody.

One singer is eliminated tonight, with a Twitter vote saving another one.  Unless somebody’s base is softer than expected, those bottom two are going to be Carney and Hawthorne.

 

 

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The Voice: Season 8, Top 6 Perform, 5/4/15

May 5th, 2015 · No Comments

by Lyn Jensen

We saw several of the remaining six singers make moves into questionable musical territory on The Voice last night, some with better results than others, as the top six of season 8 competed to see who would make final five.  Each did two songs, and with Mother’s Day coming up, five singers performed a song for their mothers.  The exception, Joshua Davis, performed one song for this wife, the mother of his children.

1-1.  India Carney performs an inspirational, gospel-tinged “Glory” (the Oscar-winning spiritual from the Selma film) and the judges love it.  It’s the first of several performances tonight that bring the church to The Voice. Carney appears like she’s left the talent show behind already–she’s more like a special guest returning to the place that launched her career.  Blake and Christina are especially enthusiastic about how some of the lyrics were originally part of a rap interlude–but India turned them into actual song lyrics.

1-2.  Joshua Davis sings U2’s “Desire,” which he says he chose because it has that “early rock ‘n’ roll vibe I love.” However, he doesn’t copy U2’s classic rock performance.  Instead of rocking, he provides more of a New Orleans jazz rendition, accompanied by a horn section.  However, “Good to see you up tempo,” Pharrell says afterward, “Great combination for you.”

1-3. Koryn Hawthorne gives REM’s “Everybody Hurts” an inpirational gospel-tinged R&B treatment, and dedicates it to her mother. Once again, her youth and inexperience are on display, branding her as the weakest of the remaining contestants. Blake, however, likes the way she’s “invested” in the song–how she has the ability to act out a song, not just sing it.

1-4.  Kimberly Nichole makes the first of two poor song choices.  Out of thousands of possibilities, she picks Tom Petty’s “Freefalling.” (It’s for her mother, but I’m not sure why, unless it’s her mother’s favorite song or something.) It’s gender-inappropriate, and that’s the least of its problems.  She appears to be going for something folksier, but she’d have been better off with one of Mellencamp’s or Springsteen’s musical critiques of America–or something by Linda Ronstadt or Dolly Parton or Joni Mitchell. The judges all love her vocal rendition, but I suspect it’s going to cost her votes. “It doesn’t matter what you sing,” says Adam, sounding like he’s trying to say something nice. “You do it your way.”

1-5.  Meghan Linsey goes back to her days of singing for tips in Nashville, and pulls out James Taylor’s “Steamroller Blues” from her repertoire.  She gives it a steamy, bluesy red-hot barroom delivery–it may be blues but she sounds more like a rocker tonight than Nichole does.  She gives what may be the performance of the night–and against this competition, she needs to.  She can’t just count on her built-in fan base to keep supporting her. The judges rave about the result, especially Christina, who exclaims, “That was crazy!  You just laid your heart and soul out there!”  Even though Linsey’s on Team Blake, Pharrell encourages, “everybody in Nashville to vote for this girl.”

1-6.  Sawyer Fredericks picks “Shine on” by Daisy May Eriewine, a musical artist who barely shows up in an online search. It’s simple, a folksong with acoustic guitar accompaniment, and that’s what Sawyer does best. Afterwards Adam says, “One of my favorite performances of the night, perfect but also soulful and engaging and emotional.” Blake concurs, “Very simple but so real and powerful.”

2-1. Kimberly’s second song:  We’ve seen a number of unwise song selections tonight, and Kimberly makes her second one, and her second gender-inappropriate one. If you’re going to do Michael Jackson’s “Dirty Diana,” don’t say it’s because you haven’t had a rock moment.  (You still won’t–and besides, what the H*ll do you call your “What’s Up?” and “Rising Sun”?)  Jackson’s song may have words like a machine gun, as Christina observes, but it’s essentially blues, not classic rock. I can think of 100 songs Nichole should have done instead, but the crowd does love her all-out performance. Pharrell raves, “You had your first official rock ‘n’ roll moment,” and Christina concurs, “You were truly a rock star,” but neither judge counts as an expert on the genre.

2-2.  Joshua’s second song:  Davis does the Beatles’ “In my Life” for his wife.  He reverts to the style he does best–a folksy coffeehouse treatment. The judges spend more time afterwards getting on the audience for out-of-time clapping than they do on critiquing Davis. (The audience clapping didn’t interfere with the broadcast, though.) Adam does say his one remaining contestant was “absolutely mesmerizing.”

2-3.   Koryn’s second song:  “Dream on” is the song Kimberly Nichole should have done, but the previously soulful and inspirational Hawthorne does it instead.  That puts her in the position of having more of a rock moment than either Kimberly or Meghan this evening. Pharrell enjoys how his 17-year-old pop princess often sounds like a well-seasoned singer but here she lays on the teen angst. For once her youth is fits the song exactly–despite its world-weary lyrics. It’s her best performance of the season, and likely her best hope to escape being below the cut line this week. Christina observes after the performance, “Out of your comfort zone, but interesting.”

2-4. India’s second song:  Carney may be a powerhouse vocalist but she got saved by two votes last week–not two percent, two votes. This week, her style’s veering uneasily between inspirational gospel and alternative edginess, so she may still be in trouble.  She gets all soulful and bluesy with a folksy Sam Smith lament, “Lay me down.” Adam, however, thinks the result is her best performance ever. “Different for you,” he says, further suggesting she’s “one of the front-runners again.” (This season is actually one that has several front-runners.) “Out of your comfort zone,” is how Christina appraises the effort, adding, “More grittiness.”

2-5. Sawyer’s second song:  Just about everybody’s turning inspirational tonight, so Fredericks joins the trend with “Take me to the River.” However, his model is the Commitments’ special brand of punky Irish white soul, not Al Green or Talking Heads.  He forsakes his guitar, works the crowd, and turns in a youthful, pop-rock version, for once fitting himself into a teen-idol mold.  The performance (complete with modern dancers) is more like a music video than a church service.  Blake says afterwards, “So amazing, all you have to do is stand there and sing.” Pharrell adds, “Did he not work the stage, ladies?” Sometimes to work the stage, you just have to stand and sing.

2-6.  Meghan’s second song:  Linsey caps the evening’s trend for church-service material by singing “Amazing Grace” for her mother.  She sings it well but it’s out of place in a pop-singing talent competition.  The judges all stand and applaud, however. Christina finds the result to be, “Touching, moving,” and Blake says, “It’s like the world stops to listen to that.”

Although I like the remaining female vocalists, only the two men–Joshua and Sawyer–moved me to pick up the phone and vote.  With Sawyer, could we be witnessing the arrival of the next Dylan or Springsteen?

We’re told that tonight’s cut will be to determine the final five, who will be advanced to the semi-finals next week.  After that it’s the finale, May 18 and 19.

 

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Beyond Reality – American Idol – Season 14 Episode 27 Recap – 4/29/15

April 30th, 2015 · No Comments

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Beyond Reality – Survivor – Worlds Apart – Episode 9 Recap – 4/29/15

April 30th, 2015 · No Comments

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The Voice: Season 8, Top 8, 4/27/15 (and Results, 4/28/15)

April 29th, 2015 · No Comments

by Lyn Jensen

We now know who made top six on season 8 of The Voice, so we can look back on Monday’s eight performances knowing who got enough votes to stay and who may be next to go. This week brought a welcome twist as three former Voice judges returned as guest advisors. Only Shakira was missing (she had a family obligation in Spain) so Gwen Stefani worked with two teams–Christina’s and Pharrell’s.

1.  Blake and CeeLo coach Hannah Kirby:  The coaches agree Hannah needs something theatrical that shows her personality.  Her song choice is Tina Turner’s “We Don’t Need Another Hero” (theme from the Mad Max:  Beyond Thunderdome movie).  She doesn’t sound very good in rehearsal, but after Blake advises her to cut the squeaks in her voice by about fifty percent, she sounds much better in the performance. Christina thinks the staging and the power vocals had “CeeLo’s stamp all over it,” and Adam agrees.  Blake thinks Kirby was perfect. However, her performance proved too little, too late, to keep herself out of the bottom two.  She was sent home on Tuesday. Who knows how deep she may have gone had it not been for those two pathetic performances in the early rounds?

2.  Adam and Usher coach Adam’s one team member, Joshua Davis:  As the one adult male left in this competition, Davis gives the feel of a classic folksong to Sting’s “Fields of Gold (Fields of Barley).” It’s given a different tone when sung with an American accent–those “fields of barley” instead of “fields of baw-ley.” Here Davis’ upper register is used much better than it was last week. After the performance, Blake comments how hard it is to just stand there and sing with very little musical accompaniment. Adam notes Davis is very different from the show’s powerhouse singers, with a style that depends heavily on class and elegance.  Voters must have liked the result, because he was placed safely in the top five on Tuesday night.

3.  Christina and Gwen coach Kimberly Nichole:  Christina wants to give her powerhouse soul-rocker a vulnerable moment, so she assigns her Radiohead’s “Creep,” but with jazz inflections. Nichole’s coached to play up how the song’s very sad, very insecure. The result’s beautiful and sophisticated, bridging the divide between classic jazz and contemporary rock. Pharrell raves afterward, “If that’s insecurity, that’s what we all need!” Adam praises how Nichole once again made the song unique. Christina agrees, “You showed things people don’t even know.” Nichole looks like she’s on her way to top four.

4.  Blake and CeeLo coach Meghan Linsey: Blake’s Nashville vet wants to do the Beatles’ “Something” because she says it’s about true love, a change from all the heartbreak songs she usually does. CeeLo likes her combination of country twang and soul.  He suggests an orchestra accompany her. Like Kimberly, Megan wants to show some vulnerability with her performance.  Some Internet sites noted afterwards how her performance earned praise from her fellow country singers, but it was the kind of performance that could have earned Ringo and/or Paul’s approval as well. Adam thinks the result was “awesome,” and compliments how well Blake coached material that was the singer’s choice. Blake declares he expects to see Linsey in the finale–and two nights later, we can say she’s his last best hope.

5.  Christina and Gwen coach India Carney: Christina’s passionate pop singer, as host Carson Daly calls her, wants to sing her favorite song, “Over the Rainbow.” She channels Judy Garland and more, infusing every word with heartfelt drama and emotion.  The judges were impressed, and I thought she gave the performance of the night, but she ended up in the bottom three on Tuesday. Maybe voters mistakenly assumed she was safe.  Maybe it’s just an indication that her voting base is mid-size. Maybe the Voice audience prefers the more contemporary Koryn Hawthorne.

6.  Pharrell and Gwen coach Sawyer Fredericks:  There are some teen talents who are too big for their britches.  (Witness a large portion of the Idol field this year.)  There are other teen talents who need considerable grooming and packaging in an age-appropriate fashion.  (Witness another large portion of the Idol field this year.) Then there’s the unique voice of Sawyer Fredericks.  Somehow the usual advice to work hard, get experience, and pick age-appropriate material just doesn’t apply to him. His country Heartland personality fits perfectly with a folk-rock version of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Simple Man.” Gwen says, “It’s not like he’s performing, he’s being,” and that’s just in rehearsal. “I can hear him on the radio,” she adds, “Something very raw about him.” If this is what Fredericks is like at 16, then by the time he’s 21–or 31–we could be looking at an American voice to rival Dylan. After the performance, Pharrell says he wants every kid who’s a Sawyer fan to vote, every kid who’s a little bit different.

7. Blake and CeeLo coach Corey Kent White:  Blake’s love of eighties’ music can take strange turns.  Blake wants his teen country singer to make a half-forgotten Bad English song, “When I See You Smile,” sound country. Blake says when a country singer does rock, it can show just how country he is. CeeLo adds, “Country’s not your cowboy boots, it’s your core.” White gives the song a dramatic edge, and Blake thinks it was a breakout performance.  However, on Tuesday, Corey was cut. My guess is that he lost his country audience and didn’t pick up any pop/rock fans to make up for it.

8.  Pharrell and Gwen coach Koryn Hawthorne: Pharrell’s powerhouse teen belts Alicia Keys’ “This Girl is on Fire.” She shows lots of power and emotion, but also her inexperience. However, the judges are impressed. Christina thinks she’s thriving and Adam thinks she’s made the biggest leap of anybody on the show. Pharrell continues to pitch her as an inspirational singer, declaring “the whole entire room and everybody in the country is inspired.” She made top five on Tuesday, making her the last remaining contestant who was advanced as a judge’s choice.  However, her youth is probably going to catch up with her against such formidable competition.

On Tuesday, Twitter votes on the East Coast saved India Carney.  Corey Kent White and Hannah Kirby were eliminated, leaving Blake with only Meghan Linsey. Last week I tweeted Blake and requested he assign Dolly Parton’s “9 to 5″ to Kirby and Alan Jackson’s “Midnight in Montgomery” to White.  See what happened when he didn’t listen to me!

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Beyond Reality – Dancing with the Stars 10th Anniversary Special – Recap

April 28th, 2015 · No Comments

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Beyond Reality – Dancing with the Stars Season 20 Episode 7 – Recap

April 28th, 2015 · No Comments

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Beyond Reality – Dancing with the Stars Season 20 Episode 7 – Recap

April 27th, 2015 · No Comments

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