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Archive for April, 2008

Top 5 –> Top 4 PHEW!

April 30, 2008 1 comment

Ladies and Gentleman, we made it through another results night show. Hopefully the changes that they propose making next year will be to make the results night episode back to the 30 minutes. I can handle (sometimes) a group number, a song by the mentor and then the inevitable boot.

Tonight I decided to fast forward through most of the show. I did see the group number which I found to be a mess. It brought me back to High School days. It was the equivalent of a bad musical on a high school stage. We find out early in the show who the bottom two are: Syesha Mercado (not surprising) and Brooke White (also not surprising). At this point, I am hoping the 437979379 votes that I put in for Syesha have paid off.

More boring performances by Natasha Bedingfield and Neil Diamond.

Brooke White is eliminated from American Idol. To be fair she had a good run and had some good performances scattered throughout. The past few weeks have been rough and she knew it and I think she had accepted the fact that she was probably going home. I will never understand how they expect someone who just got voted off to sing their songs. Brooke had trouble with the lyrics again, but that was just fitting. 🙂

Good job Brooke White. You will still get signed and put out a great folksy album.

Phil Stacey – Phil Stacey CD

April 30, 2008 Leave a comment

Phil Stacey – Phil Stacey (Release date: 4/29/08 )

Here comes another Idol alum! Phil Stacey was on last season’s American Idol and did fairly well. Only towards the end of his run did American discover Phil’s knack for country tunes which had been his lifetime in the making. Randy Jackson pointed out that “this is where you belong,” probably with alot more “dawg” and “da bomb” statements.

Phil Stacey has taken the country route like a few other Idol contestants such as, Josh Gracin, Bucky Covington, Carmen Rasmusen, Kellie Pickler, and most notably, Carrie Underwood. Hopefully this release will prove to be successful. From what I know, his first single IF YOU DIDN’T LOVE ME is doing fairly well on the country charts with little or no marketing push.

As I listened to the album, I thought to myself that overall it was a good album. The downfall is possibly the fact that there are no stand-out tracks. So when you put out a good album, but nothing makes you want to go back and press “repeat” over and over again, you end up with a mediocre effort. This is not where you want to be when the music industry has a huge turnover record, almost on the hour. I will say that the second half of the album is better than the first half. Overall, a solid 11 tracks for a very “listenable” album. If you are an Idol and country music fan, you may enjoy this album even more.

The tracks I enjoy the most are IT’S WHO YOU KNOW, BE GOOD TO EACH OTHER, and STILL GOING THROUGH.

I hope that Phil Stacey and the country market prove me wrong. I give this one a 7 out of 10, mainly because I didn’t have to skip any nonsense tracks. 🙂

Gavin Degraw – Self Titled CD

April 30, 2008 2 comments

Gavin Degraw – Gavin Degraw (release date 5/6/08 )

Well, it has only been 5 years since his first studio release “Chariot” and frankly, I believe that is too long to wait! But saying that, I am glad that it is time for a new Gavin Degraw album. You would think that making an album after 5 years would be a hard task. Mainly because as a singer/songwriter, 5 years would probably yield hundreds of songs. I am happy to find that a few of my LIVE favorites of Gavin’s have seen the light of day in the studio and on this disc.

When I met Gavin back in 2003, he was fresh off his CHARIOT release but yet still had an underground (or indie) following. He played selections from his album and a few from this new self-titled release. What an awesome show. Definitely worth the drive and the $12.

I always found it curious when an artist releases a self-titled CD that is not the debut disc. Maybe it is not that weird to everyone else, but I find it interesting.

Onto my thoughts. After streaming the album a few times on Gavin’s site, I am impressed and pleased. It would have been a shame to wait so long for an album that I hated. My stand outs are COP STOP (of course, except for the crazy crack in the middle that wasn’t edited out-hmmm), RELATIVE (another tour favorite), NEXT TO ME (WAIT A MINUTE SISTER), SHE HOLDS THE KEY, UNTAMED and WE BELONG TOGETHER (from Tristan & Isolde but re-recorded and slowed down). COP STOP has been my favorite for years now as some of my friends know. Maybe I should just name all 12 tracks.

This album is less acoustic sounding than the first. Gavin has added more guitars and drums (overall, more instruments) to his songs and provided a more “rock” sound as evident on the first single, IN LOVE WITH A GIRL. This album is less “raw” than the first album, but its a nice musical transition for his sophomore effort.  There are songs on the album that should (I say should because the industry is fickle) do well on the radio and bring Gavin back as a force to be reckoned with.

Overall, I would give this album a solid 9 out of 10. I LOVE IT. Much thanks Mr. Degraw for providing me with some ear candy.  There is nothing more pleasing than being able to listen to a CD from beginning to end without skipping tracks. I will be purchasing this album on its release date. Thank you for the early stream.

Album is streaming on: http://www.gavindegraw.com/

Things I would like to learn…

April 30, 2008 Leave a comment

A list of things I would like to learn someday, in no particular order:

To play the guitar

To play the piano (again)

To use the programs on my new macbook

To edit videos and music

Photography

To use Photoshop

How to write

This is most likely a living document and may be edited from time to time.

Top 5 – Neil Diamond Night – My Thoughts…

April 29, 2008 Leave a comment

Tonight is Neil Diamond night. I am not a huge fan of Neil Diamond, but I am comforted by the fact that I don’t have to listen to Neil Diamond sing the ten songs. So I am going into this night with an open mind besides the fact that I am worried about David Archuleta’s song choices. If Syesha can connect emotionally with “Hello Again” she may just nail tonight. 🙂 A guy can hope right?

———–

Round One:

Jason Castro – Forever in Blue Jeans

Jason makes some weird faces. I wish Jason would break out of his own mold and do something so crazy. He had another good “coffee shop” performance with this odd, odd choice of a song. I really don’t have much to say about it.

David Cook – I’m Alive

David really does need a new haircut. Was the song too low at the beginning or was that just me? Its nice he is somewhat paying homage to Neil Diamond in his performance. Also to his brother with all the AC initials on his clothes and guitars. That song was about 34 seconds long. Or it felt like it.

Brooke White – I’m a Believer

Wow. She started like crap. Does anyone think of this song as anything other than a Monkees song? I am not a huge fan of this nor am I a fan of her “deer in headlights” look. The end was the best part of the song for me. Mainly because it was over. On a side note, I realized that I have her debut cd on my computer, but I never listened to it.

David Archuleta – Sweet Caroline

Neil thinks that David A. is a prodigy. Lets see what we think about that. First is our Red Sox song! Its nice to see David look like he is having a great time on the stage. I think I might sing his version of this at my next game at Fenway Park. He honestly looks different tonight; what is it? This was the first performance I liked of the night. So far.

Syesha Mercado – Hello Again

I love watching my girlfriend, I mean Syesha. I don’t like the fact that she has an engagement ring though. Starts out awesome and beautiful. She is vocally so talented, please America, keep her in it. I cannot say a bad thing about that performance. Once again, amazing!

Are we to assume that Paula screwed up and they didn’t edit it out before airing? That was just weird. Simon was a bit too hard on everyone, except maybe Brooke.

Round Two:

Jason Castro – September Morn

Didn’t we just hear this song? Or did he sing this last week or the week before. Jason is a bit of a one trick pony. He has his teenage girl fans to thank for keeping him around. He will put out a great beachy album and I will definitely get myself a copy of that. As far as this competition goes, he’s not ready to continue. The end was a mess.

David Cook – All I Really Need is You

New guitar. I feel that David Cook has gone past the part where he grew on me. I am starting to molt and become bored again. I feel that he approaches alot of the songs the same. In a Daughtry-esque way; Matchbox 20 way; Hootie way. I don’t feel that tonight was his best night. He is safe and his Itunes sales will be high once again. Oh well. Judges loved it. Not surprising.

Brooke White – I Am…I Said

Here comes the piano! We can only hope she flubs again! Lets write on our hands shall we? Do we have LET IT BE Brooke back? This could be good for her. I actually am enjoying it. OOH, a squeak. I do have to admit, her vocal ability is really lacking. I wonder what her actual range is?

David Archuleta – America

Big song for David. Its nice to see that he is keeping his eyes open, its like a whole new David Archuleta. This song makes me want to vomit. He has such a big voice, needs some more control. I’m pretty sure he is safe and will be in David-David finale.

Syesha Mercado – Thank the Lord for the Night Time

Lets hope for something big and exciting. Going last helps (usually). Can I just mention how HOT she is? I don’t think I ever have. HAHA. She sounds fantastic once again. I just hope that people can recognize. Good praise from Paula. Simon, I hate! 1-866-idols-05 or 10. Lets do it.

Two Times I Love

April 29, 2008 Leave a comment

There are two times that I love seeing when I look at the clock, and they seem to be more frequent than any other time.

First and most obvious is 2:17, which is better known as my birthday and ultimate lucky number.

Second and more immature is 3:04. Some of you may know what is represents.

Are there any times that you see frequently?

Categories: Random Tags: , , , ,

Discovering Laura Izibor

April 29, 2008 2 comments

So, I just watched another cheesy, feel good, entertaining movie. Prepare yourself for some laughter, but the movie was STEP UP 2: The STREETS. Yes, I watched it. SO. WHAT? HA.

Anyway, it is usually in these movies where the main character has had a blow to their ego where they sit and reflect and have some sort of epiphany and that is where the best ballad or inspiring songs are introduced. As I watched, I immediately jumped to amazon to check the cd listing. Going through the tracklisting…Uh, NO. No. No. No. Maybe (oh, no). No. Nothing there that sounded like this song.

So who was this Joss Stone sounding woman singing “mmm, mmm, [blah blah blah]”? A few “google minutes” (I think I just coined that phrase!) later, I found out it was a song called “Mmm” by Laura Izibor. So thats all I know so far, but I wanted to share my discovery. What do you think?

Section of movie with song (cue EPIPHANY!):

Laura singing “MMM” live in Dublin:

———-

Laura singing “Killing me Softly”