American Idol

"Idol" returns, putting on a fresh accent

"American Idol" returns tonight (Wednesday), freshening a form that already works. Here's the story I sent to papers:


How to politely lose on "American Idol"

This may have taken Southern manners to
an extreme:

Twice lately, an “American Idol”
finalist handed a big advantage to a competitor. In 2011, Scotty
McCreery survived the gesture; this year, Kree Harrison didn't.

Angie Miller: Family permanence is tattooed

We've heard that the family that prays
together stays together, but here's one step further:

Angie Miller, just departed from
“American Idol,” has a praying family that tattooed together. “My
whole family surprised me and they all got tattooed …. It's so
permanent,” Miller said.

That involved the slogan (“Dream
Big”) that she'd already had as her own tattoo.

"Idol" changes the rules (again)

The cool thing about having your own TV show is that you can keep changing the rules. "Survivor" does that a lot; now "American Idol" does it, too.

On Thursday, "Idol" said Candice Glover and Amber Holcomb were in the bottom two ... then announced that neither is leaving. Since the judges never used the "save," there's an extra week to account for; everyone moves on.

That's sort of good news, but also not: This week's votes carry over to next week, putting Glover and Holcomb behind before the new round begis.

A cake walk with "American Idol"

Over the years, I've gone to various outdoor potlucks, the sort where a picnic table is covered by anythng from desserts to indefinable goulashes.

The weather has been usually good, occasionally not, but there's been one constant: I'm never seen people leave a cake out in the rain. If they did, they would simply bake another. Even before the Internet age, cake recipes never disappeared; they existed in little file-card cabinets and in recipes and in grandmas' minds.

Golly, miss Dolly, Janelle came close

For Janelle Arthur, the Dolly Parton
connection is sort of eternal. “It's so full-circle that it's
crazy, really,” she said Friday.

One day earlier, she'd been ousted from
“American Idol.” Viewers had her fifth among the final five;
judges said they were split 2-2 on whether to save her. “Keith
(Urban) said it was he and Mariah (Carey)” who voted for the save,
Arthur said.

A good night (and, sort of, good riddance)

Some good things happened on "American Idol" Thursday:

1) Someone finally remembered that the phrase "Detroit music" covers more than Motown Records. I had grumbled about that (see previous blog); then "Idol" opened he show with a Bob Seger song.

That was Detroit (well, a little part of it)

Hey, Detroit is a very big place you know. And it's had a VERY big music scene ... even if you couldn't tell it tonight on "American Idol."

Unlike previous years, focusing strictly on Motown Records, tonight was open to songs from any Detroiter. The result? Of 11 songs, nine were from Motown Records. The only exceptions were Aretha Franklin (a friend and neighbor or the Motown folks) and Madonna (who was a dancer, not a singer, before leaving Michigan). There was no Seger or Nugent or Winan or White or Rock (Kid) or Pop (Iggy) or others.

'Tis not the season to be Jolley

What did we learn from "American Idol" tonight?:

1) Lazaro Arbos will keep surviving, no matter what. He was clearly the worst singer Wednesday, but didn't even get plunked into the bottom three.

2) Our sympathy may be misdirected. Lazaro told viewers he had just received the song the night before ... making us think it was the night before the show. Alas, it was the night before a rehearsal -- four days before the show.

"Idol" men move to the back of the line

It looks like the five-year male domination of "American Idol" is finally over. On Wednesday, Randy Jackson proclaimed that the women were thoroughly outdoing the men; then the voters agreed.

The result? On Thursday, three women -- Candice Glover, Angie Miller and Kree Harrison, not necessarily in that order -- were the top votegetters; four men -- Paul Jolley, Burnell Taylor, Devin Velez and Curtis Finch -- were the bottom.