The Rolling Stones
March 17, 2010 by Post Team
The Rolling Stones:Believe it or not, there was plenty of “satisfaction” to be found with
Rolling Stones Night on American Idol. Maybe that’s what this season
finally needed to kick the Top 12 contestants into gear and give the program
some much-needed fireworks—a little good old-fashioned classic rock, direct
The theme of the contestants’ montages this week was where they grew up, and
so we got a quick glimpse at Big Mike’s life in St. Petersburg, Forida,
where he played high school football but turned to music after his mom died. As
for his song choice this week, Michael does a more straightforward rock take on
the Stones’ 1978 disco classic “Miss You.” Something about it just clicks,
and lets us know that, after weeks of dismal performances and downbeat judges’
critiques, the night isn’t going to be too bad. Bless you, Mick, Keith,
Charlie and Ronnie.
Didi, who was raised in Knoxville, Tennessee, informs us that her mother gets
really nervous watching her perform and doesn’t want to see her get
judged—so mom is sitting the evening out. And after all the erratic judging
the contestants have had to endure in Season 9 so far, we don’t blame her! The
elder Benami is, however, in L.A., watching Didi’s apartment while her
daughter is a contestant on the show. Anyway, Didi knocks out a solid (and
rather intense) performance of “Play With Fire,” which elicits a decent
response from all four judges. Ellen jokes, “You made the word ‘fire’ two
syllables, which is gr-eat!”
Eh, Casey is just okay this week. In fact, his electric guitar licks are more
dazzling than his vocals. That said, the blond Texan (he grew up in the small
town of—wait for it—Cool!) manages to garner the funniest line of the night
from Ellen. “I think for most women, their hearts start racing,” she points
out, emphasizing the “most” part (wink!). “But I think for people like
me—blondes—it was fantastic.” Did all of America get that joke? Hmmmm.
Tonight, Lacey–who was born in Amarillo, Texas, and whose parents are both
pastors—looks more like Sharon Osbourne by way of Pat Benetar than ever. She
gives a soft, subtle performance of the Rolling Stones’ 1967 chart topper
“Ruby Tuesday.” It’s not amazing, but again, something about giving Season
9’s hopefuls a particular set of songs to choose from is working, and making
even the so-so performances sound bright. (Can we have Rolling Stones Night next
week, too, please?) Simon ends up telling Lacey she performs like an actress,
and she needs to stop over-thinking the competition. Uh, sure. That ought to be
easy to do.
It’s kind of strange seeing Andrew Garcia performing without his guitar. But,
hey—after last week we didn’t think we’d be seeing him at all
again. The arrangement of “Gimme Shelter” sounds a tad off, but Andrew’s
singing is pretty spot-on. Ellen agrees, but like last week with Aaron Kelly,
Kara says she didn’t feel Andrew’s connection to the lyrics of the
Vietnam-themed song. Simon’s response (and the second best line from a judge
of the evening): “What was he supposed to do? You want him to come on stage
with a tank or something?” Seriously, just shove a rag in your yap already,
Sometimes you just tend to think the judges are deaf. Case in point: Katie, who
this week veers into Susan Boyle territory by giving a watered-down rendition of
“Wild Horses.” And it’s off-key. And painful. And pitchy. Still, Randy
finds it to be “a very strong performance,” while Ellen says Stevens
“sounded good” once she “got into it.” Surely Simon is on our side?
“This is the only week you’ve actually chosen a good song,” he says.
Tim, who is from Duncanville, Texas, grew up in a family that had ten kids. So
maybe he always struggled to stand out. Unfortunately, his reggae version of
“Under My Thumb” does stick out, but for all the wrong reasons. It
comes across like UB40 tackling the Rolling Stones—they’re both British, but
that doesn’t in any way mean you should eff with the arrangement of a classic
so extremely. Ellen sums it up best: “I felt like I was at a resort drinking a
All props to Siobhan, because her haunting, dramatic take on the Stones’ ‘66
#1 hit “Paint It, Black” is the performance of the night. Sure, it seemed
very staged. But that’s what this competition has been lacking for the past
two months—the drama. And once again, we get a crazy high note of shriek-tastic
proportions from Siobhan. “That was hot,” Randy exclaims. And we concur.
Like Casey James’ performance, Lee’s ends up being kind of a snooze. He
offers up a very stripped down version of “Beast Of Burden,” but damn if
Randy and Kara don’t give him a glowing review. Ellen seems to be thinking
along our lines, at least, when she says she was expecting a bit more, of all
the people on stage singing the Rolling Stones. He’ll be safe, though, since
he seems to have America’s female population under his thumb.
The fact that Paige Miles is still standing on the AI stage and Lilly
Scott is not is one of the greatest travesties of modern television. But now
that we have that out of our system, we’ll at least acknowledge that Paige
rocks it out pretty decently considering she has laryngitis, and didn’t get to
rehearse at all due to her illness. Plus she looks like she’s actually having
fun while singing this week. The judges give her a pass, though we suspect
it’s only out of sympathy.
Sixteen-year-old Aaron, who hails from from Sonestown, Pennsylvania (where there
are only about 50 houses, y’all!) ends up sounding like O-Town covering the
Rolling Stones. But you know what? We’ll take it. The kiddo’s got star
quality that Tim Urban and Andrew Garcia only wish they possessed half of. In
his interviews he comes across as an “aw, shucks” shy guy, but when he’s
on stage, Kelly really comes alive. Ellen correctly points out that Aaron and
Siobhan gave the two performances that stand out for the evening. Simon adds
that the teenager “absolutely 100% chose the right song.”
Has onetime clear front runner Crystal peaked too early? Her take on “You
Can’t Always Get What You Want” is pleasant enough. But it’s maybe just a
bit too restrained. Come on, girl—at this stage in the game, you need to be
rockin’ it out. Simon says he feels like it’s the first time where
Crystal was beaten by somebody—Siobhan. Actually, Aaron Kelly kicked Crystal
to the curb, too. But the judges seem to be angling for a girl to win this
season. We shall see.
Best of the
night: Siobhan and Aaron.
Worst of the
night: Tim Urban. It’s over, dude.
Sure, the Rolling Stones catalog gave this season’s Idols a shot of pep in the
arm after a dismal streak of lackluster performances. Still, can we really be
blamed for looking forward to Ke$ha’s appearance tomorrow night more than the
actual voter results?
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