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Thread: American Idol 5/14 SPOILER

  1. #1
    rgirl181
    Guest

    American Idol 5/14 SPOILER


    Okay West Coasters, don't read this if you don't want to know.
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    No surprised to me that Ruben and Clay are the final two. Ryan Seacreast said there were 19 million votes and that the difference between the final three was 4%--that's 760,000 votes (Mathman will correct me ). Of course that doesn't say what the distribution was. It could have been that Kimberly had 700,000 fewer votes than Clay and Ruben, and that the difference between Clay and Ruben could have split the remaining 60,000 votes.

    As for the sabotage theories, I just don't buy it. I think the producers run around too much like chickens with their heads cut off to even try something like that. And why would they want to sabotage Clay? The only reason would be to have a male-female final two, but Kim's fan base is so much smaller relative to Clay and Ruben's, I think the risk of being found out and costs of the resulting scandal (basically the END of AI) completely outweigh any benefits to arranging a Ruben-Kim final two. I think the random choice was just that--random. And random does not mean fair. As for the producers asking Clay to add a lyric, in most songs it would be no problem, but Sk8m8 is absolutely right: "Vincent" is a story song that builds, it's not a stick-in-your-mind chorus of rhymes and beats. The words also don't tumble out of your mouth; it's more like reciting poetry. I don't like the song, but certainly enough people love it to have made it a hit. Anyway, I think "Vincent" was Clay's version of skaters getting a bad skate order in the final six. Just happens.

    As for tonight's show: I didn't expect much out of Justin (never do), but was very disappointed in Tamyra Gray's "Over the Rainbow." I don't know who is doing these arrangements but this was way over-arranged. It was like showing vocal gymnastics instead of the heart of the song. You don't have to do a Kansas Dorothy Judy Garland version, but give me something that let's me enjoy both meaning and the musical beauty of the song. Too slick all around. Tamyra looked beautiful, but did anybody else notice her wandering left eye? On the close-ups, it was getting distracting.

    Justin: Josh sang "Unchained Melody" better than Justin. The guy definitely has charisma, but please, put him on a sitcom or in a boy band where you can't really hear him, but don't expect us to actually listen to him sing. Compared to Clay, no comparison.

    You know, I didn't remember the rasp in Ruben's voice earlier in the season, but I thought I just didn't remember it. But DUH, of course it's vocal fatigue! (Idiot me:lol: ) I brought up the issue of Ruben's physical condition on another thread and some people thought there was no problem. Just to be clear, I have NO PROBLEM with somebody being a big singer. But just like there is healthy thin and anorexic, there is healthy big and obese. Ruben obviously got big man genes (just look at his brother), but I agree with Rgal: If this guy is going to get through the next six months, whether he's first or second, he's going to need to work on his voice and his weight.

    As for the AI voice coach, there are voice coaches and there are voice coaches. I've always known there's been an AI voice coach and I'm sure s/he is competent for getting these people in shape for the arrangement each week. But even the best voice coach is not going to be able to work on long-term problems with technique under these conditions. Lest we forget, AI is a money-making enterprise. It's get these people popular, put out the records and put them on tour ASAP. These are made to flavor of the month singers. Anything they get after that is gravy, but as for the AI producers, they want to make maximum bucks, so what if the AI has permanent vocal chord damage? This is why I do not support AI Jr. in any way. I hope I don't get sucked into watching it because I do not like the premise, although I understand the money-making possibilities and you can't stop money nature.

    As for the final, I'm more convinced after sleeping on it that Clay is absolutely, no question about it, the far superior singer to Ruben. He's stuck in some singing unfortunate habits, but it's just a matter of working with the right coaches and producers. I just can't get past the weaknesses and limitations in Ruben's voice. OTOH, it proves the "Survivor" premise: that it's interpersonal skills (or in this case, personality) that brings success more than merit. I think Simon is right that Clay could be extremely successful over the long haul, whereas as much as I like Ruben's personality, as a singer, I don't think people will buy more than one CD. Put him on TV, in movies, on stage, something where he can use his whole personality including his voice (he is pleasant to listen to), but try the Tom Jones comparison (or whomever your favorite pop singer is): Of the two, whose voice comes closest to being able to hit a vocal home run every time? I say Clay. America may say Ruben, but if they do, I think part of it's just because they like saying Roooooooben and also because the guy really does have an engaging personality--but IMO so does Clay.
    Rgirl

  2. #2
    Show 42
    Guest

    Re: American Idol 5/14 SPOILER


    Thanks for the great review, RGirl, couldn't have said it better. I am struck by the difference between last year's top finishers to this year's top three........no comparison. While Justin definitely has a future in film or television (cute smile), as a singer, he just doesn't have that special vocal qualitity that a Clay or a Josh Grobin has. Can't wait for next week.

    Although I absolutely love Clay, I love Reuben's personality. What a great guy. I will totally be satisfied if he comes out on top next week. Best of luck to both Clay and Reuben. 42

  3. #3
    maxell1313
    Guest

    Re: American Idol 5/14 SPOILER


    <blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr> As for the final, I'm more convinced after sleeping on it that Clay is absolutely, no question about it, the far superior singer to Ruben. He's stuck in some singing unfortunate habits, but it's just a matter of working with the right coaches and producers. I just can't get past the weaknesses and limitations in Ruben's voice. [/quote]

    I have to agree. During the whole competition, I've not heard Clay's voice crack once, nor has he sounded raspy or exhausted. My guess is that somewhere along the line, he was taught actual vocal exercises and training which have certainly helped. If he hasn't had any training, he's just unbelievably blessed to have such a voice. Singers that good with no training are really rare. (Carolee Carmello, anyone??)

    I like Clay and Ruben, and it's going to be tough to choose, but I think unless he just bombs next week, I'm voting for Clay.



  4. #4
    HamiltonBrowningFan
    Guest

    Re: American Idol 5/14 SPOILER


    Clay throws like a girl :lol:

    with that said

    Clayton Holmes Aiken for AmerAiken Idol!

  5. #5
    KwanFan1212
    Guest

    Re: American Idol 5/14 SPOILER


    LOVE the siggy pic Toni!!! :D :D :D :D :D

    I am SOOOO happy that Clay is safe but when he and Ruben started crying for Kim, it got to me too! :( They all did a great job last night so it was hard to watch knowing one had to go. It is kinda interesting to me to compare this final three show to last year's because I remember the judges being very adamant that Justin and Kelly should be the final two and here, they just kept complimenting all three of them because I don't think even the judges could decide this time! I am VERY happy that we will be seeing a final show between Clay and Ruben though. That will be an awesome show!!! :D :D

    BTW-Watching Tamyra was cool (she seemed really nervous to me though!) and watching Justin was cool too.....but NOT while waiting for these results tonight! I was SO tense about it all that I couldn't really listen to them and enjoy their performances that much. And while I think Justin is a great singer, having him sing 'Unchained Melody' after Clay had just brought the house down with it last night was NOT smart on someone's part.....LOL

    GO CLAY GO!!!! :D


  6. #6
    Dee4707
    Guest

    Re: American Idol 5/14 SPOILER


    Please pardon my total ignorance but why do you talk about Josh Grobin here? I guess I could have done some research on Josh Grobin but I am very comfortable asking inane questions on this board. I would say that I trust you and that you won’t think I live on another planet but I have never watched American Idol until this year and to be more specific the last 3 shows.

    Dee

  7. #7
    Show 42
    Guest

    Re: American Idol 5/14 SPOILER


    Hi Dee, as far as I know, Josh Grobin wasn't an American Idol. I draw a comparison between Josh and Clay because to me they have similar qualities.....fantastic voices, slight build, youthful faces, etc. 42

  8. #8
    realistic51
    Guest

    I knew it wouldn't last long


    rgirl...LOL...it just couldn't last long, now could it?

    I think comparing Ruben and Clay is like comparing apples and bananas. Two totally different styles of singing. Two totally different vocal ranges. Two totally different voices. (P.S. Early on Clay said he had had no vocal training).

    See, I'd buy a CD from either of these young men. One because I happen to love R&B and singers like James Ingram, Barry White, Peabo Bryson, and Luther Vandross (my fave). So Ruben fits that bill completely. And I really want you to write and talk to some of those overweight singers who have made it big, lost weight, and gained it back. You tell them it's going to be a problem for them....:rollin:

    Two, because I like Easy Listening music by "power" singers...Celine Dion, Barbra Streisand, Kate Smith, Josh Grobin...so I like Clay's 3 octave vocal range. However I have noticed in the past 2 weeks that his voice has cracked on the higher range from vocal fatigue. Just like Ruben's rasp has become more pronounced due to fatigue.

    Now, as far as that Justin dude goes...that was THE most incredibly horrible rendition of Unchained Melody that I have EVER heard. "nuff said.

    As far as Tamyra..well, she sang Eva Cassady's rendition of Over the Rainbow..and I liked it. Actually I liked her voice better than Kelly Clarkson.

    So, IMHO, Clay and Ruben...2 distinct and separate styles. 2 amazing personalities. 2 people who deserve to be right where they are.

  9. #9
    Phenergal
    Guest

    Re: I knew it wouldn't last long


    Clay reminds my whole family of a youthful Frank Sinatra - made the bobby soxers swoon, and the mothers all want to scoop him up and pinch his cheeks....

    Only my opinion, but I think Clay's much better looking than Frankie was at his age.



  10. #10
    Mathman3
    Guest

    Re: I knew it wouldn't last long


    ITA about Frank S., Phenergal :lol:

    Didn't Tamyra forget the words, somewhere around those bluebirds in the middle?

    One thing -- OK, this show drew me in, but I absolutely refuse to watch Children's Idol. A bunch of maniacal stage parents telling yelling that their darling was robbed by the judges? How are they going to vote off the losers? Sorry, kid, you suck, go home.

    Mathman

  11. #11
    Dee4707
    Guest

    Re: I knew it wouldn't last long


    Show42, thanks for the explanation about Josh Grobin. I didn't know whether or not if he was an American Idol.

    Dee

  12. #12
    HamiltonBrowningFan
    Guest

    Re: I knew it wouldn't last long


    he should be an "idol" but he's never been on the show :lol:

    rumor has it next week Ruben and Clay have to sing the same song... and everyone thinks it'll be written more for Ruben than Clay... either way I think both will give this new song justice...

    it's going to be nerve-wracking... and either way I will be very sad(though if Clay wins I don't think I will be AS sad as if he lost:( .... here's hoping)

  13. #13
    heyang
    Guest

    Re: I knew it wouldn't last long


    Yep - last year's final was based upon 2 songs written specifically for Idol. A real side-by-side comparison.

    I missed last night's reveal show because a group of us went out after a company (snooze) function. All I got from dinner was a Pen and a stomach ache from something bad (other people got sick, too). Didn't tape it because I was taping Dawson's Creek last show.

    Anway, I saw the ending at the bar. No volume.

    As for last year's winners, I couldn't stand Justin. Most of the guys from last year were all boy band material. Even joked about calling them the 5-J's (Justin, RJ, EJ, and can't remember the names of the rest.) Tamayra was my favorite - I think it's been a while since she's performed in front of an audience. She's been a guest star on Boston Public and seems to be pretty talented from the bits I've watched. Thank God I haven't heard more from Nikki.

  14. #14
    rgirl181
    Guest

    Re: I knew it wouldn't last long


    :lol: Realistic, I think we had a "complete agreement" run of about one post:lol: OTOH, I do agree with you that comparing Clay and Ruben is like comparing "bananas and apples" to use your analogy. These guys definitely define binary in body shape. We touched on the issue of Ruben's weight before and I would have clarified my position more if that post wasn't already so long. Of course I know and admire many big singers. However, what concerns me is that Ruben is THIS big at such a young age (24). For example, Pavarotti is one of the biggest of the big guys with great voices, but at age 24, he was nowhere near Ruben's size. He put on the bulk of his weight as he got older and it has affected his voice. And if I had the answer to losing weight and keeping it off, I'd be in my Park Avenue office working on my next billion-seller book about it. It is a cruelty of genetics that Ruben got the genetics to make him that big, just as it is for anyone with a weight problem. But it doesn't mean I can ignore the voice and health problems I know are going to plague him when AI starts touring. I feel bad for the guy (a) just in general; (b) because he has such an engaging personality; and (c) because I think he could have a truly great voice like Peabo Bryson or Luther Vandross. I've just seen guys like Ruben all too often when I did clinical work in physical therapy. They can function well at that high a weight up until the end of college. In college, they usually play some kind of sport and that keeps their muscle mass high. But after college, unless they become a professional athlete, they become fairly sedentary and that's when the problems start. Also, although there are plenty of big-bodied singers who have made it, we have no way of knowing how many were unable to make or continue their careers because of the health problems associated with their weight. As we discussed before, Ruben faces problems of sleep apnea, but he also is at high risk for type 2 diabetes and heart problems. I think it's simply awful that medicine has relied on junk science and chalked up weight problems to "lack of willpower" for so many years when the reliable data have pointed to genetics and physiology as the primary factors in obesity for decades. To me, it's like considering whether or not I would sponsor a very talented overweight figure skater. The skater could have all the talent in the world, but I know s/he is not going to be able to maintain a healthy diet (in other words, s/he would have to starve) and still compete. Another thing with Ruben is he's not just big the way someone like Barry White is big. Ruben is morbidly obese and by definition, that's a chronic health problem. I wish physiology did not work this way but it does and I think it's going to prevent Ruben from singing the way he will need to in order to sustain interest and also, physically, to meet his touring obligations.

    I saw Nell Carter in whatever the name of the Fats Waller musical was in the late '70s. It was her Broadway debut (not the performance I saw, but the musical) and she was the standout in a great cast. She died recently at age 54, having struggled with her weight the entire time. The big singers who have made it have been lucky and IMO none of them has been as big as Ruben. I know as well as anyone that only 5% or less of people who lose more than 10% of their weight keep it off. But right now, the only thing we have to offer people who lost the genetic lottery is exercise and a modified diet. I'm not saying Ruben should lose 100 pounds. But even 30 or 40 would help, especially if it meant he got in better shape physically. Even people who have had the kind of stomach surgery Carnie Wilson had eventually regain much of the weight. It's genetic Darwinism. So I feel bad about Ruben; I acknowledge that many large singers have made it, but I think Ruben is large even by those standards; and I think he is going to have problems both vocally and in terms of his general health. But we may have to agree to disagree.

    As for voice quality, I love the kind of blues-pop singing exemplified by James Ingram, Barry White, Peabo Bryson, and Luther Vandross, too. But I don't think Ruben is in their league. Try listening to Ruben from the AI CD, which was recorded with all the benefits of studio engineering, with your eyes closed and then listen to one of the above. I don't think he has enough power and control in his voice to sustain a purely audio performance. Great fun to watch him perform, but the pipes just ain't there, IMO. If it was between a great tenor pop voice like Clay's and a great baritone blues voice like Vandross, I'd throw up my hands and say "Tie!" But even agreeing that Ruben and Clay have different kinds of voices, I still think Clay has the stronger voice. Although Clay's voice has shown some signs of fatigue, it's nothing like what Kelly Clarkson was showing last season and very little compared to the fatigue in Ruben's voice. If it's true that Clay has never had any voice training, he was born lucky.

    In any case, if Ruben does not win next week, I'll feel bad. I like the guy. He is very genuine, has star quality, and almost the whole package. If Ruben wins, I'll be very happy for him (I think both of these guys will get recording contracts and gigs outside of the stuff they'll do for AI). But it still breaks my heart that someone with Ruben's talent and personality is going to be physically held back by his weight. See, I told you the post would be long if I got into more detail on Ruben's weight. I'm even annoying myself:rolleyes: Anyway, I love the acceptance and even celebration of Ruben's size, but I can't ignore the health risks. We've had threads on GS before about body weight and people always get into spirited disagreements. I'll end by saying I just hope medical research soon comes out with some kind of medication or genetic engineering to truly treat obesity--and not just for Ruben's sake. It's a national health crisis. (Sorry to get on the soap box.) In any case, my vote would still go to Clay.

    At least Realistic and Rgirl are back to disagreeing on at least one thing in every post, so all is right with the world on that level:lol: BTW, I thought Tamyra looked and sounded nervous too. I wasn't sure if I was hearing vibrato or a shaky voice. But I do think she's a wonderful singer. Not her best performance, IMO.
    Rgirl


  15. #15
    mathman444
    Guest

    Re: I knew it wouldn't last long


    I think Luther VanDross fought his weight all of his career. I don't know exactly what kind of diet or exercise regimen he used, but (like Oprah) he seemed to be able to keep his weight down when he really concentrated on it, and then it would balloon up again. Actually I thought that Luther (like Al Roker) looked better big.

    I don't know whether his life-threatening stroke last month at age 52 had anything to do with his weight. Last I heard he had had a tracheotomy and remains in a "minimally responsive" state short of coma.

    Mathman

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