American Idol XIII 2014 – Live Blog and Recap – Auditions #2 – Video
Welcome to the live blog and recap of American Idol XIII “Auditions #2”! Tonight, we continue Season 13 auditions in Austin, TX, and San Francisco, CA! Which singers will receive a Golden Ticket?
Videos will be added as soon as they become available, so keep refreshing! Let’s get this live blog rolling!
-We kick things off similarly to last night’s premiere, showing a flashforward to one auditioner’s knockout audition. Like with seemingly everyone this season, he’s a WGWG. He sings “Make You Feel My Love,” and J-Lo seems totally captivated by the performance. The judges ask where he comes from, and this kicks off our opening, in which we learn that tonight’s contestants come from all walks of life, and all places around the country. We then have the opening titles sequence, and the logo looks like the final boss of some extravagant Japanese videogame.
-The arrival of the judges is set to “The Mother We Share” by Chvrches, a song I absolutely adore, and something I never thought I’d hear on a show like this.
-In a great bit, Seacrest wonders where J-Lo is, asking “Where’s the princess?”, to which Keith points at Harry Connick, Jr. and says, “Right here.”
JESSE ROACH, 27, is up first!
-Jesse talks about her best friend, who signed her up for American Idol. They met when the woman discovered Jesse in her garage, which I suppose is something happens to people? Good times.
-Jesse has a sweet black guitar, and sings K.T. Oslin’s “Do Ya”, a song that’s perffect for her smoky, smooth country voice. A great audition.
-The judges love her, and I don’t blame them.
JESSE ROACH is going to Hollywood!
-From there, we get a montage of Golden ticket recipients.
STEVEN CURD, 18, another cute guy with a guitar.
ANNA MELVIN, 22, a country singer who does a shaky rendition of “Wrecking Ball”.
RYAN CLARK, 22, a scruffy-faced, tie-wearing crooner who nails “Ordinary People”.
ALL THREE SINGERS are going to Hollywood!
-We then meet Our next auditioners, a brother and sister duo…
JAMIAH MALIK, 15, and QUIANDRA BOSTON-PEARSALL, 17, are up next!
-Quiandra talks about how close she and her brother are, and explains that if Jamiah makes it through and she doesn’t, she’ll be nothing but supportive. The two auditions are shown side-by-side, with Quiandra bringing a bit of Diva swagger to her vocal, while Jamiah whips out his guitar and charms the judges with a rapping original song.
-We then see the judges vote, but we aren’t shown who they’re voting for. One auditioner gets a No from each judge, while the other gets a Yes from all three. Who is going to Hollywood? I’d guess Jamiah. Even though he didn’t really sing, his audition was the better of the two. But they make us wait through a commercial break to find out.
-Aaaand nevermind. Quiandra got the Golden Ticket. However, Jamiah is a total class-act, taking his rejection with a smile and an encouraging view on his future.
QUIANDRA BOSTON-PEARSALL is going to Hollywood!
-Quiandra, of course, is devastated for her brother. But hey, she’s headed to Hollywood. So yay, silver linings.
MEGAN MILLER, 23, is up next!
-Honest question because I’m terrible with faces, but is this the same Megan Miller from last season? Also, is Megan Miller the female “John Smith”? I know way too many Megan Millers.
-Megan jokes with Harry about sharing a hometown, and it’s a cute exchange. She then sings “Last Night” by Carrie Underwood, and I thoroughly enjoy the rasp in her voice. The judges love it too, talking about that raspy, almost Steven Tyler-like quality in her voice. The judges’ decision is obvious.
MEGAN MILLER is going to Hollywood!
-Megan tricks her mother by pretending to be rejected, and it’s the rare time where the fake-out proves amusing.
-We then head immediately into the next audition from a pianist named GRACE FIELD, who…isn’t good. She’s not terrible or anything, but the audition is a mess. And, unsurprisingly, Grace doesn’t get through.
-We then get a montage of other Golden Ticket auditions:
AUSTIN ALVAREZ, 26, has pink hair, spikes on his shoulder pads, and a pretty good voice.
ERIC WOOD, 28, works on an oil, and he has a raspy, husky voice to match his backstory. He slays “Simple Man”.
SPENCER LLOYD, 19, who is already on the right side of J-Lo for being insanely handsome, sings Colton Dixon’s “Never Gone”. It’s a really sweet, understated audition, and I like his chances going forward. Harry doesn’t think he’s the best singer, but feels he has tons of star potential, and joins the other judges in giving him a unanimous vote of confidence. I mean, really, it’s not like the judges are going to say no to this face:
-And we come back from break with our next auditioner…
MARLON LINDSEY, 27, is up next!
-Marlon has wanted to audition for eight or nine years, but he’s been in the Army for the last six years. He’s here now because he feels he can be the next American Idol. He sings “A Change Is Gonna Come,” and while there are a ton of runs, it’s a pretty fabulous vocal.
-The judges give him a Golden Ticket in the most no-brainer decision so far.
MARLON LINDSEY is going to Hollywood!
-However, with the high of Marlon’s audition, comes the low of our next auditioner…
RICK ROWLING, 28, is up next!
-This is an absolutely cringeworthy audition, from his terrible opening jokes (in which he does impressions of Randy Jackson and Simon Cowell), to his awful outfit (jean shorts and red suspenders, with no shirt).
-The joke behind his name becomes apparent once he starts to sing his audition song, “Never Gonna Give You Up” by Rick Astley. Harry Connick Jr., who wonders if this show has suddenly become America’s Got Talent, interrupts and says, “Come on, you know you can’t sing!” He gets on Rick for “disrespecting the process,” saying there are people who wait their whole lives to audition for this show. He sends him on his way, and I hope we never see anything this crushingly awkward again tonight.
-We then move on to our next auditioner…
T.K. HASH, 28, is up next!
-T.K. reminds the judges of President Obama, and he launches into an impression that has the judges rolling. It really is quite good.
-He then sings “My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark” by Fall Out Boy. He reminds me a lot of Matthew Schuler from The Voice, and the judges are absolutely in love with him, feeling he has star quality and a killer voice (although, once again, Harry is much harder to impress).
T.K. HASH is going to Hollywood!
-He could be one to watch, I think.
-Before the break, we get a look at the audition of MCKENNA DENNIS, who sings “When I Was Your Man,” and Seacrest asks us to vote on Twitter whether we think she’ll get through. Once again, it’s another obvious one, as she gets a Golden Ticket to Hollywood.
-And then a blast from the past…
TRISTEN LANGLEY, 15, is up next!
-IT’S NICKI MCKIBBIN’S SON! And Nikki McKibbin is here with him! J-Lo immediately recognizes her, and we get the whole backstory, as Tristen has wanted to be like his mother ever since Season 1 of American Idol. He seems like a really good kid, although the idea that we’re now into second generation Idols makes me feel old as hell.
-He sings “Santeria” by Sublime, and Nikki mouths the words along with him from the sidelines, looking proud. I think it’s a pretty good audition. Not a showstopper, but a fairly impressive, confident audition.
-Harry feels that without the Second Generation story behind him, it just wouldn’t work. He ultimately says no, feeling that Tristen doesn’t have a good enough voice. Keith and J-Lo warn Tristen about some of his bad habits, such as wearing out his voice with some of his vocal choices. Harry says no, but the other judges disagree.
TRISTEN LANGLEY is going to Hollywood!
-We then launch into another montage that is basically Hell for recappers like me, given how names and auditions just fly by. Worse still, we only get to see one of the prospective singers actually sing: TAYLOR STEARNS, 21, who sings “I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz, earning herself a Golden Ticket to Hollywood in the process. At least half of the other singers in this montage aren’t so lucky.
-We then go into our next audition after the break…
LJ HERNANDEZ, 23, is up next!
-LJ is a country kid who is out to prove something, as his ex-fiance repeatedly told him he didn’t have the look, the voice, the charisma, or the star quality to be on American Idol. As he enters the audition, he gushes about meeting the judges, saying he used to sing Keith’s “Memories of Us” to girls in high school, and telling J-Lo she’s an unbelievably good performer. For Harry, he talks about the scene where he gets blown-up in Independence Day, and says he mourned when that happened. I like this kid.
-Unfortunately, he can’t sing. His version of “I’ll Be” by Edwin McCain is a shouty mess. He even replaces the lyric with “And I’ll be better when I’m 25!” The judges give him four Nos and send him on his way. But he remains in good spirits, so good on him.
-We then return to the auditioner from the cold open…
JOHN FOX, 20, is up next!
-John talks about his job as a worship leader back home in Magnolia, TX, and his realization that he doesn’t want to miss the opportunity Idol provides. And so he’s here to audition.
-He sings “Make You Feel My Love,” and it’s a really good vocal, although it’s kind of unspectacular. With that said, he has plenty of room to grow, as he shows real potential. John compliments Keith’s guitar-playing, and the judges compliment John’s vocals, as he gets yeses across the board.
JOHN FOX is going to Hollywood!
-From there, we have Seacrest chatting with the judges about the auditions so far, and they discuss Jesse Roach as being one of their favorites so far. This segment has the added benefit of displaying the chemistry between these judges and Seacrest, as they end up joking about The Bachelor, of all things, in an amusing bit.
-And we return from break with the second half of auditions, originating from San Francisco, with the judges talking about wanting to see something they’ve never seen before. Our next auditioner hopes to deliver just that…
RACHEL ROLLERI, 17, is up next!
-She’s excited to see Keith, but not as much as her mother, who wanted her daughter to make the judges auditions so she could meet him. Rachel recalls how her mother shouted for Keith to take off his shirt off at the first concert of his they attended.
-Rachel loves playing guitar and writing songs, and it shows in her audition of “Stay” by Sugarland. She’s insanely pretty, with a great personality and an even better voice. She flubs the chords a few times and makes a “mistake face” that has the judges charmed, although the judges then become pretty obnoxious by talking and joking about it with each other throughout damn near the rest of the audition. But ultimately, they loved Rachel, who has an understated confidence. Harry warns her about flubbing again, and J-Lo makes a good point about how they might not have known she flubbed the first time if she didn’t make the weird face.
-The judges vote…
RACHEL ROLLERI is going to Hollywood!
-I like her a lot. I hope she goes far.
-Next, we have another montage of Golden Ticket recipients, as we’re just burning through them at this rate…
ATHENA WILLIFORD, 20, looks like one of the girls from Sweet Suspense. She sings “I Have Nothing,” and I almost wish they’d have rejected her for that song choice alone. I didn’t find the vocal itself all that impressive either, to be honest.
REMI WOLF, 17, a former Junior Olympian who looks like Lorde and has a lovely voice.
M.K. NOBILETTE, 20, is a surprisingly excellent audition. I like her.
ALL THREE SINGERS are going to Hollywood!
-And then we have our next auditioner…
EMMANUELLE ZIDOR, 24, is up next!
-Emmanuelle comes into the audition room, crawling and singing at the same time. It’s really weird, but he actually has a great voice. It’s time for him to sing, and he goes with Whitney Houston’s “I Believe In You and Me”, which, while yet another overdone song, is a great fit for him.
-The judges love the audition, and Emmanuelle breaks down in tears, as he recalls his music teacher telling him, as a kid, that he would never be on American Idol. Harry says that this judging panel is comprised of three music teachers, and they’re all saying Yes to him.
-Emmanuelle freaks out, and it’s a wonderful little moment.
EMMANUELLE ZIDOR is going to Hollywood!
-Emmanuelle is a personality, but he’s the rare personality that has a voice to go with all the quirkiness. I like him.
-And we’re back from break with more silliness from the judges. We then get some audition clips, including a “jazzy” arrangement of “I Want You Back” by SAMUEL RAMSAY, 24. Harry doesn’t like the audition, and even more than that, he hates the term “jazzy,” since it’s one of those frequently misused terms like “pitchy”. He doesn’t make it through.
CAITLIN JOHNSON, 15, is up next!
-The judges don’t believe she’s really 15, and frankly, neither do I. In a funny move, Harry gives her a new name, age, and hometown more in line with her appearance. Funny stuff.
-Caitlin delivers an Etta James arrangement of “Something’s Got A Hold On Me,” and it’s a solid vocal. However, Harry isn’t impressed, feeling she just isn’t ready yet. But Keith actually really enjoyed the audition, leaving J-Lo to be the deciding vote. Jennifer believes Caitlin deserves one more shot.
CAITLIN JOHNSON is going to Hollywood!
-I can see Harry’s point of view, and he’s probably right about her not being ready. But ultimately, I don’t hate that she got through. She has a pretty damn good voice for 15.
RONALD REED, 23, is up next!
-Ronald has been waiting to meet J-Lo longer than he can even say. He brings his guitar, and he’s clearly excitable and nervous.
-He sings “For You”, and while his guitar playing skills are actually really good, the vocals just aren’t there. When the judges tell him this, he loses his mind, insisting he can sing. But it’s still a no, leading to a devastated reaction. Seriously, just a complete meltdown, as he just keeps repeating J-Lo’s name through tears on his way out.
-He collapses into a puddle of tears when he tells his family he didn’t make it. Ronald says it took Candice Glover three tries to make it, so he hopes he’ll be able to make it in two. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think Candice at least made it through to Hollywood on her three tries.
-While Ronald is a hot mess express, his family seems really chill and insists Ronald will be fine, all but saying, “Our son is a total drama queen. Just ignore him.”
-And we’re back with more of the auditions, and Harry being silly — requesting a hug from J-Lo and pretending to sob.
DAVID LUNING, 26, is up next!
-My favorite audition of the night so far. Yes, it’s another husky-voiced WGWG, and the hat is a bit much, but this was a great audition. I also imagine some people will find him cute in a Moody Folk Singer kind of way.
-Keith feels he’d be crushed in Hollywood Week, since his real talent is as a singer/songwriter. But he also feels nobody else in the competition is doing what David does. Harry and J-Lo find David interesting, and the decision is another clear one…
DAVID LUNING is going to Hollywood!
-Harry jokes about whether David will crash-and-burn after being pushed out of his comfort zone in Hollywood (doing an impression of David singing a raspy take on “Saving All My Love For You”).
SELENA MORENO, 22, and SIERRA MORENO, 22, are up next!
-The twins consider themselves the Dynamic Duo, and talk about how singing is their life. Selena sings “Try” by Janis Joplin, and while it starts out a bit shaky, I think she has a really great voice. The runs are a bit much, but there’s a real raw quality in her voice. Sierra sings “One Plus One” by Beyonce, and it’s not as good as Selena’s vocal. It’s pretty though. But I’m not sure if pretty is going to cut it.
-Then again, J-Lo seemed to like Sierra better than Selena. Keith, however, preferred Selena’s voice, although he likes the confidence in Sierra’s voice. Harry talks about the dynamics of sisterhood, due to having daughters of his own. He offers this anecdote as preface to the harsh news he has ahead: one of them is clearly a better singer, and the other singer’s journey will have to end here. And we go to a commercial on that cliffhanger.
-Back from break, and the all three judges say Yes to Selena. Sierra gets a Yes from J-Lo, and a no from both Keith and Harry, who tells the girls it was a mistake to come in together.
SELENA MORENO is going to Hollywood!
-Selena seems more upset than Sierra, who actually comes across as pretty chill. The family cheers as the sisters come out with a Golden Ticket, although only one of them got the lucky break. Sierra tearfully talks about how proud she is of her sister.
-We then get a montage of people who don’t make it through, mixed in with some people who are actually fortunate to make it. Like this returnee…
BRIANA OAKLEY, 17, is up next!
-Brianna talks about deciding to come back this season the minute she was cut in Hollywood Week last season. Keith recognizes her immediately, and they chat about her hair in a cute little segment that sees Keith adopting a British accent.
-Brianna sings “Stay” by Sara Bareilles, and I really wish the judges would stop talking during an audition, even if it’s to whisper to each other how good a contestant is. It’s just really distracting, although it doesn’t seem to affect Briana, who really slays the song.
-J-Lo is reminded of Jordin Sparks, which is an apt comparison. All three love Briana, and give her their vote of confidence.
BRIANA OAKLEY is going to Hollywood!
-And we come back from break with RICO PERKINS, 24, singing “I’ve Got A Golden Ticket” from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and he’s not the only person singing Wonka, as ARANESE TURNER, 20, sings “Pure Imagination”. They both go through to Hollywood!
GADDY GUNS, 26, is up next!
-Gaddy is wearing workout fear with weird tube socks and spandex shorts. Well, he’s in really good shape, but he looks ridiculous. When he comes in, he and Harry get into a fake standoff that’s pretty amusing, prompting Keith to ask if he sings at all. “Yeah I sing!”
-Of course, he goes on to sing and ends up delivering one of the worst auditions of the night. The judges like him, but hated the audition. They send him on his way without a Golden Ticket. Outside, Gaddy feels his nerves got the better of him. “You think that’s what it was?” Ryan asks, ever the keen observer.
ADAM ROTH, 28, is up next!
is a “sound healer,” helping people feel better with his guttural moans, apparently. He’s built up as a total hippie, although his white outfit and bare feet suggest a cult leader of some sort. But he seems like a really affable guy, and even uses his “sound healing” on Harry, in yet another funny moment in an episode full of them for ol’ HCJ.
-He sings “Hallelujah” and it’s an interesting audition, to say the least. He has a really pretty voice, but it’s all over the map. The judges note this, and Adam says he thinks his problem was that he was concentrating too hard, since this is really important to him.
-Harry says no, J-Lo says yes, and Adam is encouraged to use his “powers” on Keith to make him change his mind. And it works! Great stuff.
ADAM ROTH is going to Hollywood!
-And that’s a wrap! But not before Harry gets on the audition stage and pretends to be an auditioner. I love this guy.
-And we end with a montage of contestants singing “Roar” by Katy Perry, while Seacrest gives us a tally of the Golden Ticket recipients so far this season, which is up to 79. The preview for next week promises more drama, and some crazy talent. Should be an interesting set of auditions.
So what did you think of tonight’s show? Did the judges make the right calls? Who are your favorites? Sound off in the comments!
Thanks for hanging out! Goodnight!
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