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justfanoe
24 July 2011 @ 06:39 pm
Inspired by the recent Beatles poll on ILX, which I didn't see in time to vote for, but I thought it would be fun to come up with a ballot anyways. Since I took the time to do it, figured I might as well post for posterity. (Attributions to Paul/John are based on primary songwriter as taken from Wikipedia)

20. "Eight Days a Week" - Beatles for Sale (John/Paul)
19. "Julia" - The Beatles (John)
18. "I Feel Fine" - 1964 Single (John)
17. "The Night Before" - Help! (Paul)
16. "You Really Got a Hold On Me" - With the Beatles (Cover)
15. "You Won't See Me" - Rubber Soul (Paul)
14. "And Your Bird Can Sing" - Revolver (John)
13. "Blackbird" - The Beatles (Paul)
12. "Got to Get You Into My Life" - Rubber Soul (Paul)
11. "You Can't Do That" - A Hard Day's Night (John)
10. "I'm Looking Through You" - Rubber Soul (Paul)
9. "Eleanor Rigby" - Revolver (Paul)
8. "I've Just Seen a Face" - Help! (Paul)
7. "We Can Work It Out" - 1965 Single (John/Paul)
6. "No Reply" - Beatles for Sale (John)
5. "She's Leaving Home" - Sgt. Pepper (John/Paul)
4. "Ticket to Ride" - Help! (John)
3. "If I Fell" - A Hard Day's Night (John)
2. "Hello, Goodbye" - Magical Mystery Tour (Paul)
1. "She Loves You" - 1963 Single (John/Paul)

Final tally:
John - 7
Paul - 8
Both - 4
Cover - 1
George - 0
 
 
justfanoe
21 April 2011 @ 07:22 am
Contestants sing songs of the 00's this week.

Best to worst:

Haley ("Rolling in the Deep"): I thought this was really good. The vocal was great, well controlled and really well structured. I love how theatrical she made this. Miles above anything I thought Haley was capable of, I'm shocked.  This was maybe my favorite Non-Lauren performance of the season.

Lauren ("Born to Fly"): This was pretty safe, but the vocals are good enough and she changes it up just enough to save it from being boring. Pretty good job.

Jacob ("Dance With My Father"): I love how he yet again keeps the restraint and picks a song where overdramatic emoting plays right into the feel of the song. This isn't a signature performance and there's nothing particularly memorable about it, but he's been consistently good.

James ("Uprising"): This is still very generic rock vocals and the high register I really can't stand, but all in all it was one of his better performances. At least, unlike some other contestants, he has an idea of how to perform, instead of just standing there.

Stefano ("Closer"): This isn't bad, but it contributes absolutely nothing to the song which, come to think of it, is basically Stefano's upside.

Scotty ("Swingin'"): I'm pretty much over Scotty by now, given his complete lack of range in performances. He's got to do something different. And this wasn't just boring, it was actually his worst performance to date. Completely cheesy and shows no command of the song or stage at all. What a disappointment.

Casey ("Harder to Breathe"): Incredibly corny with extremely lazy vocals. I can't imagine anybody wanting to listen this. It was awful.
 
 
justfanoe
15 April 2011 @ 12:10 pm
Don't really have anything to say about the results, Paul probably deserved to go home and Stefano and Haley probably deserved to be in the bottom three so no complaints from me.

I don't normally blog this show, but I think the results show performances were significantly better than the actual show this week.

I really enjoyed this duet by Lauren and Scotty on "American Honey". Their voices sound really good together and the interaction between them was nice.

Although I don't really like Casey and Haley I probably enjoyed their duet on "Moanin'" better than any of their actual performances. Haley's voice actually translates to this singing style really well and their little vocal tics that usually bug me actually fit together really well. Good job guys.

Then there was Jacob, James, Stefano and Paul on "Sound of Silence"/"Mrs. Robinson". These guys actually sound like a real band. This wasn't incredible, but everybody looked and sounded a lot more relaxed than on the real performances and it gelled a lot better than I would have expected.
 
 
justfanoe
14 April 2011 @ 07:13 am
They all did songs from movies this week. This is one of the worst Idol nights I can remember.

1. Jacob ("Bridge Over Troubled Water"): This was a pretty normal Jacob performance. As this competition he has managed to keep his voice a bit more controlled without losing the sweet tone or the emotions. This wasn't great, but it was the best of the night, by default.

2. Lauren ("The Climb"): I really love Lauren's voice, but this was the first time I've found her performance to be boring. Pretty obvious she's going for Pia's votes here. This was fine and all, but a bit disappointing.

3. Stefano ("End of the Road"): He finally picked a song where his overwrought emotion plays into the song perfectly. The vocals still aren't really there, but this was better than usual.

4. Scotty ("I Cross My Heart"): The vocals were good as always, but this was way too safe. Scotty could be great but it seems like he's putting up 0 effort on this show.

5. James ("Heavy Metal"): Let me say this, I do hate this guy, but he seems to really love performing music. Good for him. Okay-ish I guess.

6. Paul ("Old Time Rock & Roll"): It was Paul. The vocals were actually decent this week, but the performance was particularly ridiculous, even for Paul.

7. Haley ("Call Me"): Boring and very karaoke. What an awful song choice.

8. Casey ("Nature Boy"): I can't imagine why you would even attempt to do something like this on Idol. It was really bad.
 
 
justfanoe
07 April 2011 @ 01:44 pm
Theme this week was Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Top to Bottom:
WORTH SEEING
1. Scotty - "That's Alright Mama": Veers dangerously close to Elvis impersonation, but he makes it his own enough to save this from being karaoke. I love this kid's voice. I thought it was really good.
2. Lauren - "Natural Woman": I thought this was a particularly poor song choice. But the thing I love most about Lauren is that she really knows how to sculpt a performance. This builds up really nicely to the glory notes at the end. She never seems karaoke. All that said, this was not as good as her best moments on the show.
3. Casey - "Have You Ever Seen the Rain": Normally I hate this guy, but even I have to admit he's got great phrasing and I liked this arrangement. Made me really enjoy a song I don't usually care too much about.
4. Jacob - "Man In The Mirror": Has no idea how to sculpt a performance. Just goes 100% all the time. But I still do love the tone in this guy's voice, though he has yet to turn out a great performance.

COMPETENT BUT BORING
5. Pia - "River Deep, Mountain High": I love her voice, and technically she's great, but she's never managed to put up a real performance. She's nothing more than a really good singer, which isn't really what I'm watching for.
6. Haley - "Piece of My Heart": Put me to sleep.

TERRIBLE:
James - "While My Guitar Gently Weeps"
Stefano - "When A Man Loves A Woman"
Paul - "Folsom Prison Blues"
 
 
 
justfanoe
31 March 2011 @ 01:42 pm
Take 2, since they used (wasted) their save on Casey last week.

REALLY GOOD
Lauren: Although the verse on this was a little shaky, by the end I was really loving it. Really nice arrangement and she showed off her vocals well. I continue to think she's best.

Jacob: Had a lot more control over his voice this week, plus I still love her tone.

JUST FINE
Pia: I still admire the control she has over her voice and ability to hit high notes, but this wasn't the best song choice. Getting pretty boring.

Naima: The verses were a lot better than the chorus, and overall it was interesting but not particuarly great. Opposite of Pia, her singing isn't too good but at least she's always interesting.

Haley: This was a good arrangement and an almost good performance but it just didn't quite all come together. I think she lacked a certain conviction or power. In any event, it was her best performance by far.

DECENT BUT FORGETTABLE
Scotty: I still really like his voice, but dude at least do a different type of country song.

Casey: Thank god the judges allowed us to see this incredibly average performance. What a shame it would have been to miss that(But seriously, the vocals were fine and this was his best performance)

James: At least he didn't really even try to sing this week. My hatred for this guy continues.

BAD
Thia: I've liked her in previous weeks, but the vocals just weren't there this week.

WORSE THAN JPL:
Stefano
Paul: Both awful and boring. Not worth discussing.
 
 
justfanoe
29 March 2011 @ 01:21 pm
Why am I just learning about this now??? Not sure where to post this because nobody reads this journal, but I can't really think of anywhere else.

Rock Mafia is the official name of the Armato/James songwriting and producing team, who, of course, have been responsible for several of the best songs over the last 5 years. And now they have started to release songs of their own, featuring Tim James himself and vocals and possible involvement of Miley Cyrus??

Their Myspace has 3 songs: http://www.myspace.com/RockMafiaForever

"The Big Bang" - This is a simple dude rock song. I really like this song, though it's below the quality of their best work. Check out the music video, starring Miley Cyrus. Acc. to wikipedia they are trying to get this music video expanded to a film.

"Pimps and Hoes" (Called "Morning Sun" on Youtube) - This is a club song. It's pretty weird, but catchy.

"Fly or Die" - This one isn't very good.
 
 
justfanoe
24 March 2011 @ 08:05 am
Motown night this week, which is a totally overdone theme on this show. Let's see how well some of the more niche singers adapt.

Casey Abrams - I Heard It Through the Grapevine: I absolutely cannot stand this guy. He always oversings (or, more accurately, overgSrowls) and his performance style is completely ridiculous. This guy is a joke. He has more in common with Norman Gentle than with Taylor Hicks. (link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EHaEdfmi0Hg)

Thia Megia - Heatwave: This has a lot in common with a Brooke White uptempo performance, in that it's nervous and robotic. However, I've said all along that I like her voice when she's not trying to be a huge diva and her voice did sound really good on this track. I liked this. (link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1kx2DIqk7Sc) [Note to interested readers: This classic Motown track shares its name with one of my very favorite Irving Berlin songs!]

Jacob Lusk - You're All I Need to Get By: He has a good voice but completely lacks vocal control. Should note that this performance did contain more restraint than he had shown the last couple weeks, but it's still not something I go crazy over. (link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJ8IFZgLkpM)

Lauren Alaina - You Keep Me Hanging On: In my opinion, this girl has been the absolute standout so far. And performances like this are the reason why. Like Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood she has a great ability to make songs her own while still remaining true to the originals. I thought this was excellent. (link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZeTBFQ_W9Og)

Stefanoe & Haley: Not even worth commenting on or linking to. Both uninteresting.

Scotty McCreery - For Once In My Life: Wow, he certainly went for it. This was pretty ridiculous and I can't really endorse it but he's a really good singer and this was interesting. Certainly worth listening to. (link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p8pnFqGI16Y)

Pia Toscano - All In Love Is Fair: She's a great singer, and arguably the greatest diva ballad singer ever on the show. All of her performances have been really good but really boring too. I suggest a change of pace next week. (link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bGo1BxpNev0)

Paul McDonald - Tracks of My Tears: Don't have much to say here, he was competent, though he did mess up the lyrics. Wait, I do have something to say, when he says "masquerading" it sounds just like he's saying "masturbating". (link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BzYmMQ6Qbs4)

Naima Adedapo - Dancing In The Streets: Naima is definitely the most polished performer out of all the finalists. After a couple weeks of pretty bad performances she really needed to knock this one out of the park and she basically did. (link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vmw3I14q3Hs)

James Durbin: Awful. Refuse to link to it.

Like so:
GREAT: Lauren Alaina, Naima
GOOD: Thia
GOOD, BUT BORING: Pia
NOT QUITE AS GOOD, BUT AT LEAST INTERESTING: Scotty, Jacob
COMPETENT: Paul, Haley
BAD: Stefano
IRRATIONAL HATRED: Casey, James
 
 
justfanoe
17 March 2011 @ 09:06 am
Didn't watch American Idol at all last season, not sure if I even saw any performances at all. But I'm back on for this season.

Jacob Lusk is an interesting one. I really like the character of his voice, not sure what I think of his version of "Alone" though. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LjJ96F0d6UU). I can remember at least three other versions of this on Idol (Allison Iraheta, Carly Smithson and of course Carrie Underwood). He certainly puts his spin on it. Hmmm.

I think Lauren Alaina has been my favorite so far, and I really enjoyed her versions of "I'm The Only One" and "Turn On the Radio" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8P3xUQP8Zjw, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ko9fBez2Row). She's got a great pop-country voice and seems to have one of the most versatile performance styles. Nothing to blow me away the way the best of Carrie or Brooke White did but she's been solid so far.

Scotty McCreery has awesome old school country vocals! He did "The River": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uCVqUB6ZWsE and he sounds like a professional. Can he bring back some nice old school country music to the radio? I hope so!

Pia Toscano has been close to flawless but for some reason I find it hard to get too worked up over her. Just fatigued on great diva singers I guess. Note particularly "I'll Stand By You" and "All By Myself". (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0LR0qvrzhWE, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MNY0VlFEbdk)

Casey Abrams version of "Smells Like Teen Spirit" was arguably the worst performance in show history (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c_UOsK0NFPU).

Can't be bothered by any of the other contestants though some of them have put up decent performances.
 
 
justfanoe
19 February 2010 @ 02:22 pm
Email I just received from official Aly&AJ website:

Hey guys…so we know it’s been quiet in the 78violet camp but we want to first off thank you for sticking with us. We have some big news and wanted to make sure you hear it first.

Now that it’s official, we can tell you we’re no longer a part of Hollywood Records. What does that mean exactly??? Now we have the freedom to take 78violet in the direction we want. We’re writing and recording new music and are really excited on what’s next.

So…what is next? As for the album we recorded for Hollywood, honestly, we don’t foresee it ever being released. But…we are continuing to write and record new songs that we hope you’ll love as much as we do.

We’re going to be taking the Aly & AJ website down in the meantime which means the current message board will be removed and the accounts you created on the site will be put on hold. Yes…major bummer. But we’ll have a new message board and a new temporary site up in a few days that will serve as our main communication with you for the time being.

As always, you can get a hold of us on Twitter or Facebook.

We love you and are excited to share the new 78violet with you. Xoxo.

A+A
78violet