Idol invades Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry

by Ruth Anne Boulet

This episode begins with a guy who claims he can hit a really high note. I don’t know if the note was actually that high, but it was disturbingly bad. So bad my cat stopped in her tracks & whipped her head around to look at the TV. She remained transfixed until the screeching stopped.

And isn’t that one of the reasons many of us tune in to American Idol? It’s those auditions, good or bad, that make us stop in our tracks to watch. When Simon Cowell was in his prime, he was also a reason to tune in. Simon gave contestants his honest opinion, no matter how brutal it was. It was refreshing. How often in American culture do we hear that kind of complete honesty?

Although I don’t think honesty would’ve mattered to the next contestant. I can’t tell if she, Christine McCaffrey, is delusional or on a dare. I hope she’s on a dare. If she’s not on a dare there’s something really wrong with her, like hearing ‘yes’ votes from judges that don’t happen.

Chelsee Oaks and Rob Bolin are exes that used to sing together & are now both auditioning for American Idol. Everyone around American Idol wants them to get together. They seem to be handling it just fine, even though he totally still wants to be with her. I don’t know if they would’ve made it to the judges if they didn’t have the cute breakup story. Now they’re both going to Hollywood. Will hookups happen? J Lo thinks they’re going to get back together. I’m sure the cameras will be following the drama.

I don’t blame Steven Tyler for ogling the girl in bloomer panties and a floral bra. The girl who can touch her nose with her tongue also gets his vote. I’m fine with never seeing either of them again.

Allen Lewis isn’t a pop kinda guy, but everyone has their own favorite flavor of ice cream. He guesses his is vanilla. He also guesses their favorite flavor might be chocolate. If the judges tell him he’s not through, then he’s just going to go home & practice harder. That’s great big burly tattoo guy!

The girl who won a pageant wants to know how far she can make it on her talent. Stormi Henley was Miss Teen USA. Steven Tyler wonders if she’s ever ‘let loose’ and says yes. J Lo says no, cause her voice isn’t strong enough. (She’s right.) Randy caves & lets her through. J Lo rightfully gives them crap.

Adrienne Beasley is African-American and lives with her adoptive white parents on their farm. The judges love her. She’s through.

Kameella Merricks gets the good singer set-up and then busts out with this really screeching, booming voice. It’s not good. Randy told her she’s horrible before she gets all of her nos. Steven tells Randy not to tell people they’re not good.

No, Steven, that’s why we’ve watched American Idol for 10 seasons. It’s to hear the brutal honesty of the judges. So many people don’t have an objective assessment of their own talents. You can call Randy mean all you want, Steven Tyler & Jennifer Lopez, but Randy is nowhere near the meanness level of Simon Cowell. But either way, Randy and Simon are being honest. If someone’s horrible, they’re horrible. They need to hear that once.

Jackie Wilson gets the judges to clap for her. She also gets a quick round of yesses.

LaToya Moore is a recording artist from Nashville. She thinks others see the glow she radiates. Seacrest tells her to relax because there are cameras in there. She’s also wearing a prom dress. She subscribes to the nasally school of singing. She decides to sing on the way out, because that might help. It doesn’t.

After a montage of good singers we’ll only see for a few seconds, we get Matt Dillard’s heartwarming package. His parents have fostered hundreds of special need kids. He doesn’t have a bad voice, but wow do the Idol stylists have to do some work with this guy. He gets through, but J Lo thinks he needs work.

Lauren Alaina is another 15-year-old auditioner. Her favorite cousin has a brain tumor. She seems to be doing well, though, as the judges have cousin Holly come into the room. The judges think she’s the best one they’ve heard in Nashville. She’s good, but neither one of us is hearing it. She asks if her family can come in and meet the judges since she’s the last one of the day. It’s cute when she sings the really crappy Aerosmith song with Steven Tyler. She actually sounds better when singing Aerosmith than she did on her audition song.

Next week it’s off to Austin where supposedly the talent is Texas-sized. We’ll see about that.