It’s a new season and there’s a mostly new judging panel and all new talent. At least I think there’s all new talent. We sure didn’t see much during the American Idol 2013 premiere.
I’m not sure what was up with that, but I actually feel like I watched two hours of nothing. Weird. The episode opened with Phillip Phillips performing a version of his hit single “Home” and a huge Idol self-promotion. Then we get to the auditions. Night one takes place in New York City. Let’s look at the standouts — good and bad.
Tenna Torres, 28. The Mariah superfan delivered a lot of emotion, but her singing was slightly nasally. But her passion definitely shined, so I give her credit there. She got four yeses. She’s onto Hollywood.
Watch Tenna Torres’ audition performance of “You’ve Got A Friend”.
James Bae, 15. He came rolling in to sing some Bieber and I’m not sure how he did because my ears starting bleeding on the first “note.” He of course did not get through.
Christina “Isabelle.” She gave us a powerful and fresh version of “Summertime,” one of the many reality singing show staples. I liked her. She has a great personality and a great tone. She got four yeses and moves on to Hollywood.
Watch Christina Isabelle’s audition performance of “Summertime.”
Evan Ruggiero, 21. We got our first story with this guy. He is a cancer survivor and lost a leg to the horrible disease. He wasn’t the best singer even though we’re supposed to think so. I mean it wasn’t bad, but his version of “I’m Yours” was totally iffy. But when he broke out the guitar and did some Bon Jovi, it got way better. Still good enough to go through? Eh. He’s got a lot of energy and does have talent. I’d say yes. The judges said no, though. Bummed.
Watch Evan Ruggiero’s audition performance of “I’m Yours” and “Dead or Alive.”
Jessica Kartalis, 19. Her mom nominated her to be seen by Idol judges for a shot. So Randy delivers her number to audition. She sang an original song per the judges’ request. And it wasn’t very good. Hmm. That’s the second person we were led to think was going to be good. She gets a no.
Frankie Ford, 24. He was fighting some major nerves, but his version of “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of These)” was pretty outstanding for an a capella version of that difficult sound. He’s a great singer with a big voice, but he’s going to have to battle the nerves. They send him through. (And yes, they played Relax by Frankie Goes To Hollywood when he made it through).
Watch Frankie Ford’s audition performance of “Sweet Dreams.”
Sarah Restuccio. This 17 year-old-country girl sings a Carrie Underwood song, THEN she busts out a Nicki Minaj song. Hilarious. I like her.
Angela Miller, 18. She’s partially deaf but it does not change her talent. She has a great voice and a great look. She gets through to Hollywood easily.
Watch Angela Miller’s audition performance of “Mamma Knows Best”
Gurpreet Sarin. He sure didn’t look the part but he sure sounded the part. The judges didn’t love him but they kind of liked him, so he made it through barely.
Watch Gurpreet Singh Sarin’s audition performance of “Sunday Morning.”
Ashlee Feliciano. The final audition of the night was probably the best of the episode. I mean I wasn’t floored by it, but her version of “Put Your Records On” was pretty solid. She got four easy yeses.
We got a lot of fast-forwarding tonight. They sent a lot of people through, but we saw very few of them actually sing.
Overall, 41 contestants from the New York audition received golden tickets to Hollywood. Tomorrow American Idol 2013 heads to Chicago.
So how did new judges Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj and Keith Urban do? Well, when we first saw them Nicki and Mariah were already bickering over Nicki’s drum major hat. But was it staged? I’m still not sure of that. Is it foreshadowing? Eh. Maybe. It’s definitely foreshadowing that they’re going to get on my nerves. Let’s just say I’m not excited to have to constantly sit though and write about a feud. Ugh.
Keith was good. Randy was Randy. Overall the panel was pretty boring. I actually think I liked JLo and Steven better.