i have a question...

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Look at That Baby!

Check out pictures of me with the cutest baby in all the land.

Music Explores, vol. II

Today was one of those days in NYC where you walk outside and feel dirty right away because the humidity is already bad. And the streets smell like garbage. I was kind of jet-lagged, after sleeping in until 10 and then it taking almost an hour and a half to get uptown for the second half of my day at work.

After a strange afternoon of running around, catching up on work emails, a lab meeting, and not being able to use my work computer because it was being updated, I headed to the Lower East Side for another night of volunteering. The game plan was to teach the kids solfege and the scale, which seemed slightly arbitrary to me, especially since it included singing Do Re Mi, from the Sound of Music, with them. But whatever. When I become a Team Leader, I can do things differently. (I have an interview next Friday, just for that.)

I found out tonight that this project is linked up with shelter kids. That these kids actually live in the housing development where we meet. Tyshawn was already there when I got there. He seemed slightly subdued at the beginning of the evening, but maybe that's because he was the lone kid in a room of female volunteers for the first part of the night. It was just two kids for about 20 minutes and then...they kept flooding in.

Anyway, I seem to have a knack for working with them after all. I kept Tyshawn and another little boy, Keith, focused and gave them encouragement that they could memorize the scale, backwards and forwards. Keith sat down next to me and nearly shouted that he wanted me to be the one to help him. Tyshawn was just as enthusiastic. Our assigned line of Do Re Mi was "Ray, a drop of golden sun," and the boys screamed it each time it was our turn to sing. By the end of the night, I got big hugs goodbye.

I couldn't help but think that these are the kind of kids that don't really get much of a chance to be kids. And yet, here they were, singing a Broadway song and begging for cookies.

And on the train ride home, I saw a little boy singing to himself, "T makes the sound t, t, t. Everybody sing it, t, t, t." Kids are magical.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

AI Finale

It’s only 7:36 PM on American Idol Finale night, and I almost expect there to be a pre-show. Like on the Oscar telecast. Hey! Ryan Seacrest could meet and greet the audience members, like he does on E! during award shows, and then host the show. That fool is really all over the place.

There’s a heated debate going on on MSNBC.com about who will win. One writer says Jordin has the most potential to be a pop star, that Blake is just a gimmick. The other says Blake has the greatest potential to really crank out hits. Based on last night’s performances, I think Jordin deserves to win, but if the song order had been different and Blake had ended with “You Give Love a Bad Name,” I might have changed my tune. Either way, it’s all pretty exciting. I have butterflies. Which show should I liveblog next?

HAHA! I just turned on Fox. And there was, in fact, a red carpet special. How silly.

I’ve watched 49 hours of this show? Good lord.

Jordin and Blake are singing their first duet together, “I Saw Her Standing There.” She IS just 17. How clever. It’s like Donny and Marie, except way hotter and less incestuous. And she towers over him. How tall is Jordin, you think? 5’10”?

Now for some reason we’ve shifted to Gwen Stefani on tour, singing “Four in the Morning.” I guess they do have to somehow fill 2 hours. What about the star-studded duets? Remember Elliott and Mary J from last season? That was some good TV filler. This just strikes me as awkward. Ryan assures us that more surprises are on the way, so I expect to be gobsmacked.

(They’re playing From Justin to Kelly on VH1. I rented this movie once and was mortified when the person behind the counter literally announced it to the rest of the store. It was like being at a pharmacy and having the cashier ask for a price check for the laxative you’re buying over the intercom. Or whatever that story is.)

Good for Kelly for making another AI appearance, singing “Never Again.” And good for Fox for supporting her new “uncommercial” CD. This is a better outfit choice than the muumuu she wore on “Idol Gives Back” night. But she’s just not looking her best. My December, out June 26. Who’s excited?

The 2nd Annual Golden Idol Awards highlights some of the strange and fascinating auditioners we saw at the beginning of the season. Remember X-centric? He thought he was a panther. Isadora Thurman sang orgasms. Margaret Fowler dressed like Old Fat Big Bird. Fowler is there to pick up her award for Best Presentation and squeeze a last second or two out of her less than 15 minutes of fame. And make out with Ryan. Vomit. There is no way that woman is sober.

Suddenly, the Top 6 guys are singing an arrangement of some unnamed song by David Thomas of Take 6. Phil still sounds like the strongest male singer that was in the competition. But Brandon also sounds great, further convincing me that we lost him entirely too early. And there’s Smokey Robinson, two feet from the boys. Very cool. I can’t help but notice how excited they all are to sing with him, during “Tears of a Clown.” Still, these aren’t exactly thrills and chills. I haven’t even cried yet!

Barry B., Blake Lewis, and Doug E. Fresh are now doing something chaotic. I’m confused. But Blake has certainly been working hard this week, hasn’t he? HE SOUNDS LIKE A MACHINE! Oh my God. This one gets a thrill and chill factor for sure. I can’t stop grinning.

Nicholas Zittman (the one who sang Unchained Melody with crazy eyes), Sandy Chavez (singing something unrecognizable…oh yeah, it’s Black Velvet), and Someone Stallworth (singing something really loudly) are nominees for Most Original Vocal. Stallworth won. Does anyone care?

And the Top 6 girls are singing next. I miss some of them a little bit. Remember Stephanie? Ooh! Gladys Knight is joining them. Hey, how come Melinda hasn’t sung yet? OK, I just got a little weepy watching how excited Jordin was to be singing with Ms. Knight. Oh good. Go, Melinda, go!! Sing with your future self. No gobsmackage, per se. But it’s only 8:43, and that was all pretty entertaining.

(This should really be a separate entry, but I just recognized Anika Noni Rose playing Kelly’s friend in From Justin to Kelly. I guess her career had nowhere to go but up from there. It’s like 6 Degrees of American Idol. You know, with the whole Jennifer Hudson of Dreamgirls connection.)

Tony Bennett is back, since he couldn’t perform in April because he had the flu. He’s singing “For Once in My Life.” For the record, I think one day Paula should just get up onstage during a show and remind us of her early 1990s self. I bet she can still tap dance like she did here. (Isn’t this entry chockfull of extra goodies? I think it must be because I’m bored.)

More nominees for the 2nd Annual Golden Idol Awards. I refuse to write anymore about them though. I’m sure none of you mind.

Melinda gets her own trio with BeBe and CeCe Winans, for whom she used to sing backup. I hope this doesn’t mean she’s going to record a gospel album. Her joy is palpable though, so if this is the kind of music that will make her this happy to sing, who am I to dispute that?

So “Time After Time” just makes me cry everytime. Best Ford ad yet. And the finalists just both won new Mustangs, and then Blake did a mediocre Borat impression. Do the finalists always get new cars at the season finale?

Carrie Underwood is now singing “I’ll Stand by You.” Is she wearing a dress? Is it a shirt? I just don’t know!

Clive Davis is there to present some other award. He mentions Chris Daughtry and his great success this year—“biggest selling artist of the year” success. Taylor who? He thanks the judges for finding 6 years of such great talent, and then he presents Carrie Underwood with a plaque noting her 6,000,000 album sales in the U.S. Surprises still M.I.A.

The African Children’s Choir is back and obviously very excited. They’re pretty adorable. I could hear this track over a hot dance beat. It could totally be a hit. Ay yeah mamaaaa ay yeah yeahhhhh. It’s like the new Hustle. There’s even a dance break already built in.

And Sanjaya is suddenly being mentioned in the same sentence with Ghandi. I guess his 15 minutes aren’t over yet. He gets to perform live with Joe Perry, repeating his “You Really Got Me” performance, sans ponyhawk. Crying girl looks downright terrified this time. Maybe the wind machine is scaring her.

Next, it’s Green Day with John Lennon’s “Working Class Hero.” Geez, nobody can refuse the American Idol train these days. Whatever happened to punk rock? I suppose it is for a good cause. That was really good boys, but where are Blake and Jordin?! I’m getting antsy.

Hey! Look who it is. Taylor Hicks. Has anyone seen him since last year’s finale? He’s still gray-haired but he is, indeed, skinnier. Now, why do we think Taylor isn’t doing well? This song is good! It sounds like it could play during the end credits of a smart, sexy comedy, perhaps one starring Will Smith.

Jordin is finally up again, singing “You’re All I Need to Get By” with Ruben Studdard. Rubin is, in fact, not any skinnier. She looks very comfortable onstage, doesn’t she? I’ve got nothing bad to say about that.

Oh good lord. No, they did not just put Bette Midler onstage. And no, she is not actually singing “Wind Beneath My Wings.” It’s like they know me! I’m not even going to ask what exactly this has to do with the show because she’s so fantastic. Even Randy and Paula are moved to slowdance and flap their arms like wings. Jerry Springer was obviously moved too.

OK, this has GOT to be the last commercial break. Maybe I won’t liveblog another show right away. This is exhausting. So far though, Blake wins for the thrill factor of the night. He’s electric. (Boogy woogy woogy.)
Oh! A Beatles tribute. Of course. Let’s count the celebrities: Kelly Clarkson (doing the Running Man and sounding all sung out on “Sgt. Pepper’s”) with Joe Perry, Taylor Hicks (with “A Day in the Life”), Carrie Underwood (with “She’s Leaving Home”) and the Top 6 girls, Ruben Studdard (with “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds”) and the Top 12. And all of them singing “A Little Help from my Friends.” I love all the black and silver, by the way, especially Blake’s My Chemical Romance jacket.

I guess that means there’s one more commercial break, even though it’s 9:58. This may be the longest thing I’ve ever written in my entire life. I’m all Idoled out, and I haven’t really moved in two hours.

Let’s get on with it. I have to watch the Real World: Denver Reunion on MTV.

I feel like I haven’t seen either contestant in weeks. Where have they been all night? The winner of American Idol is…JORDIN SPARKS! Were the tears last night fake? She’s not crying enough for my taste. She’s a great singer, but I’m glad I won’t have to watch her pretend to be moved anymore.

No more Idol until January?! What am I going to do?! What are any of us going to do? Oh, the HUMANITY!

Promise me you’ll all keep reading my blog even though I won’t be writing about this show every week. Thank you and good night.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

AI Top 2

Goodness, thank god they’re not singing yet. I just got home. It’s 8:04. I haven’t peed or washed my hands or anything yet. Fewf. Ok, now...on to the FINAL BATTLE!

For the official American Idol, Season 6 record, Blake is ahead of Jordin in my “favorites of the night” tally. He has three (Latin, Bon Jovi, and Top 3) and Jordin has two (60s and Country). Interestingly enough, Melinda tallied highest with 4. Oh well.

I have read that the finalists will sing three songs tonight: the AI single, a favorite song that they’ve already performed once, and a totally new song. I’m just glad I never have to make that walk in 10 minutes again…until next season, perhaps. Once again, I can’t believe this season is over. Time flies when you’re having fun.

Blake is up first tonight. And he’s repeating “You Give Love a Bad Name.” Some of the novelty has worn off, I must admit. But good for him for repeating his riskiest performance. It’s just not quite as risky a second time, is it? I think Blake should add some purple to his hair…those lights work on him. Again, I can totally see him as a headliner. He’s already friends with Maroon 5 and Sir Mix-a-Lot. He didn’t need this show to help with his music connections at all. The crowd certainly loved it. And he just looks like a kid in a candy store in front of them. Too cute.

Jordin’s up next with “Fighter” by Christina Aguilera. Whoa. She’s rivaling Xtina’s vocal performance. That’s impressive. Until she got ahead of the music for a second and tried to hit the money note. But this is definitely going to be a tight race. Jeez. I agree with Simon, Round 1 is Blake’s.

Blake grew up wanting a drum set but started beatboxing instead. He’s next with “She Will Be Loved” by Maroon 5. He definitely does better with songs where he can kind of…evade the singing. I do love his argyle sweater though. I’m cringing for him to fix his flatness at each high note, but alas, he didn’t. He is certainly having a blast though and it shows. Isn’t that the most important thing?

Jordin’s next with “A Broken Wing” by Martina McBride. She’s giving me chills a little bit with this one. Jordin has a way of tapping into the emotion of a song that is pretty incredible. Both contestants did better with the song they had already performed once on the stage. This round is Jordin’s.

“This is My Now” won the singles competition, and Blake is up next with it. He’s all about the argyle tonight! This is…not the song I voted for. It’s basically “A Moment Like This” except less interesting. I hope if Blake wins he doesn’t have to put it on his record. I don’t think, considering his fairly lackluster performance, he likes it either. But he’s just so cute! How can you resist a face like that? (And I’m glad Simon urged viewers to judge him based on his first two performances. I hope that’ll help.)

(I’m really upset I’ll be missing the premiere of So You Think You Can Dance on Thursday, by the way. Maybe my mom will DVR it so we can watch it together when I’m in CA. What do you say, Mom?)

Jordin is up with “This is My Now” to end the evening. Why did America vote for such a crappy song? Because America is stupid. Jordin could legitimately have a single with this song though. She almost made it palatable. Goodness, she just might win. And I typed that even before she cried about it.

I’ll be back tomorrow to recap the finale. My roommate insisted because she’ll be busy singing at Lincoln Center. I think that girl’s got her priorities skewed. Lincoln Center or the finale of American Idol? Anyone?

Monday, May 21, 2007

thought of the moment, 8: missed connections

He didn't call, and I am shocked at how fast I fold back into myself. Walk down the street, avoid my reflection, suddenly forgetting I felt attractive even a couple days ago. That I'm a woman, even. It happened so fast.

Instead of putting a band-aid on my bruised ego and moving on, I stand looking over the man- and self-hatred cliff, ready to jump off. I seesaw between never wanting to go out again and wondering why the man behind me in the pharmacy doesn't take the fact that we bought exactly the same thing as a sign we should be together forever.

Friday, May 18, 2007

You gotta love her

S: I really want to work at a place like [Webster Hall].
A: Why?!?!
S: You know, so I can wear, like studded belts!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Painting with Portraits of Hope

This is how I will be spending my Saturday afternoon. I'm so excited to get my hands dirty.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Music Explorers

Tonight I spent 2 hours volunteering with New York Cares and worked on a project called Music Explorers with Henry Street Settlement. I didn't quite know what to expect and the crappy rainy weather and long walk on the Lower East Side all made me nervous. (Oh, that, and that I got a text from a cute boy I met over the weekend.)

There were about 8 of us volunteers and maybe 10-12 kids all together. The Team Leader was a feisty, musical theater nerd who brought her Casio keyboard. Today was just an introduction day. We made ourselves nametags and talked about our favorite types of music. The kid I paired up with was an 8-year-old named Tyshawn. He wrote his name very carefully and then drew a picture of 50 Cent because his favorite music is rap. Then I asked him if he'd save it forever and the Team Leader compelled me to autograph it...which seemed to endlessly excite Tyshawn, who boasted it about it to the rest of the group. I said it'd be worth a lot of money one day and he said he would never sell it. Too sweet.

The majority of the time spent today involved each of us going around and saying our names and the type of music we liked best (with a gesture) and then repeating the others' information around the circle, like a memory game. Tyshawn popped his hood, and I pretended to play piano because I couldn't decide what my favorite type of music was but I do love that instrument. Tyshawn caught on super fast, asked lots of questions, sang along, remembered everyone's name and danced around. Somehow I had paired up with the most outgoing kid there! It was inspiring.

We chatted at downtime. He has 7 brothers and sisters. His birthday is June 12, 1998(!); his favorite food is pizza and his favorite subject is writing. I told him I liked to write too. He writes about his family, and the last thing he wrote about them was that "his mom makes him happy when he's sad."

When I left, I went up to him to say goodbye, and he called after me before I left the room. I will definitely go back. Next week, I think the Leader will have the kids write their own raps.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

AI Top 3

I’m so excited to not run up 3 blocks in 10 minutes for too many more weeks. I’m real sweaty. I can’t believe how fast this season’s gone.

Tonight the finalists will sing three times! A judge’s choice, a producers’ choice, and the finalist’s choice. Oh, and we get to see the folks in their hometowns. Pretty exciting.

Jordin’s singing “Wishing on a Star” by Rose Royce first, which Simon chose for her. The beginning of the song was WEAK, but I think she picked it up at the end. I’m guessing she was nervous. It’s that or she just doesn’t know what to do in her head voice. I ended up liking it, but I think/hope she’ll do better for the rest of the night.

Blake is up next with Paula’s choice, “Roxanne” by The Police. BRILLIANT! I can’t even type because I’m frozen. This is the smartest judge’s choice I can remember. He got a little confused during the bridge. I mean, he’s adorable and talented, but he doesn’t really hold a candle to the strength of the women he’s competing with. But I just want him to stick around next week so I can see him grin more. Too cute.

Melinda’s singing Randy’s choice, “I Believe in You and Me.” Wow. That’s bold. I love this song so much. And I love that she’s not trying to do a Whitney impersonation. Melinda is a musician, which I’m not sure she’s getting credit for in this competition. This is the first time, though, that I’ve seen her a bit out of her depth. American Idol producers need to leave Whitney to Whitney. And did the judges hear something I didn’t?

Jordin’s next with “She Works Hard for the Money,” which the producers chose for her. She’s a sass-machine. It’s infectious. Not to mention that she’s probably 6’2” in those heels. C’mon Jordin, give us a Flashdance. This was solid.

Blake’s next song is “This Love,” an excellent choice for him again. This may be his most solid performance since Bon Jovi night. I just want to see him headline a tour by himself. Because I think he could do it.

I love these how-many-performances-can-we-cram-into-one-night? nights. They’re just so exciting and fast-paced!

Melinda’s grandparents are in the audience. That’s special. And her idol is her “mommy.” Does it creep anyone else out when grown people refer to their parents as Mommy and Daddy? “Nutbush City Limits” is her next song. GO TINA! WE LOVE YOU! Er, I mean Melinda. Love. It. I think tonight is the most she’s been pushed out of her snooze-worthy ballads and self-conscious “rocking” and she is delivering. Good for her.

Jordin’s final performance of the night will be a redux of “I (Who Have Nothing).” Her dress is beautiful. Jordin and this song are best friends. She’s just so good. And it looks like she’s spent. How come she sang a song she already sang once? I’m not really complaining, but I’m confused by it.

Blake is singing “When I Get You Alone,” by Robin Thicke. And apparently, he also likes big butts. My roommate is excited. I feel like this is a Blake we’ve never seen before, and it’s telling that he picked this song for himself because it’s indicative of what he’d really be like as a performer. That was his best performance of the season and even the best performance of the night. So commanding, fast, sexy, and fun. I think he’s very smart because unless Melinda sings a really surprising contemporary song, this competition just may have a male in the finale.

And the final performance is Melinda with “I’m a Woman.” Did she just totally flub that second line? But she knows how to make up for it. Magical too that she’s having a moment with her own backup singers. It would be fascinating if she didn’t make it to the finale, but if she doesn’t, she certainly went out with a bang.

Favorite of the Night: Because of his final performance, Blake
On the Way Out: Because of his other performances, Blake. But he’ll be fine.

Friday, May 11, 2007

For those of you not on Gmail

Here are some of my recent "away messages":
"Yeah, can I take your digits." "No, not in a million years. You're nasty, please leave me alone."
Who doesn't hate stupid bitches?
Atlantic City is a wild card.
When in Rome, stop being a dick.
Inspector Gadget? I just met her.
Ewan MacGregor? I just met her.
I teetotal and ogle boys.

I am a Pop Culture Genius, Vol. III

I was flicking through the channels last night and landed on Nickelodeon. First of all, let me say that the fact that Full House and Fresh Prince of Bel-Air are airing as Nick at Nite shows makes me feel like an old lady because when I was growing up, Nick at Nite was I Love Lucy.

Fresh Prince was on and suddenly I recognized this man playing Trevor, Hilary's co-worker at the news station and future fiance. I think the character ends up dying in a freak skydiving accident or something.

Check him out in all his glorious-voiced splendor in this clip from the Tony telecast.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

I Heart Doggies

Picture this dog with brown speckly fur. He's who I walked this evening in Williamsburg. He was 11-months old, and his stupid name was Mark Jeremiah.

But I wanted to take him home anyway. He tinkled when he got excited. And yes, I picked up poop.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

AI Top 4

We lost two boys last week—Phil and Chris. It struck me right after the posting (or maybe the morning after) that it didn’t even occur to me that two members of the same gender may go, and then it made total sense because, IMHO, LaKisha totally deserved to stay. Anyway, my prediction odds are all off, so I’ve ceased keeping track. I think all bets are off tonight anyway because the top 4 is always unpredictable (see Season 1, when Tamyra left and Season 5 when Chris Daughtry got kicked off).

And who else noticed Jordin crying only when the cameras were on her during Chris’s final performance last week? Sometimes I forget she’s 17 and thus…immature. Or maybe she was faking it because she thought people would buy that she’s really sad. Because people are stupid.

Tonight is BeeGees Night with Barry Gibb. I hope Blake busts out—Entertainment Weekly hopes he’ll try “You Should Be Dancing.” That would be exciting. I also hope we don’t hear a redux of How Deep is Your Love because the boys nailed it during Audition Week. Remember ?

They’re singing twice tonight! YES! Barry wants the four to be a group. I wanted the top 6 to be one too, after Idol Gives Back. I thought their harmonies were so solid! (Has Barry Gibb’s speaking voice always sounded like Sean Connery?)

Melinda is first with “Love You Inside and Out,” which confused Barry because it was a song he sang in falsetto, but I think he was convinced by the end of her rehearsal. I have so many things to say, but I guess the gist of it is…she’s really good. She does sound like Gladys Knight, as Simon has said, and I actually really dug her singing this style of song. I do agree (as I’ve said for weeks) that she needs to up the wow factor somehow. She’s so solid sometimes she borders on boring.

Blake is up next with… “You Should Be Dancing”!!! Good for you, EW. Blake seriously makes me sweaty. Love the echo effect, hate how flat he was. I wonder if the effects were throwing him off. I think he’s got enough of a “whoa! what’s he doing?” factor to be safe, but this wasn’t as makes-you-sit-up-and-listen as last week. I agree with Paula that he seemed to shine the most when he was beatboxing. In general, I think he needs to be sure to stay on the catchy side of fence and not tread on the cheesy side.

LaKisha is singing “Staying Alive,” continuing her run of singing the most well-known songs and proving her lack of musical knowledge once again. Nice with the syncopation, Kiki. Otherwise, I was mildly bored. And she didn’t take Barry’s advice to sing the chorus higher. Big surprise.

Jordin is singing “To Love Somebody,” and her rehearsal made me slightly weepy. Barry was equally impressed. Fewf. I think this was the best song choice of the night so far, and she is back in true form. She’s fighting for a spot in the top 3 after last week’s debacle. Certainly the best performance of the night. Glad they’re all getting two chances tonight.

Melinda’s next song is “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart.” She’s changing the lyrics so she doesn’t sing about losing on the show. I sort of love her for that. Wouldn’t it be SHOCKING if Melinda got kicked off tomorrow? Not that I necessarily think she will. Just that tonight was kind of an underwhelming Melinda night. That is, of course, until her big ending. I take it all back. (Remember folks, I’m live-blogging.)

Blake’s next song is “This is Where I Came In,” which apparently nobody’s ever heard of. We forget that the tone of Blake’s voice is so good. Or he does. His chorus was solid, but it’s hit or miss tonight. I’m not sure he’s safe after those two chances. But he is the only male, and he’s dead sexy, so who knows? Maybe my roommate will vote for him enough times to keep him on until next week.

(I voted for the Songwriting Competition, so you don’t have to…all the choices suck.)

LaKisha’s up again with “Run to Me.” I have thought of absolutely nothing to write about it, so I must be bored. As Randy would say, “It was just aight for me.”

Jordin is last with “Woman in Love,” which was performed by Barbra Streisand. Barry thinks she’s going to be one of our greatest female recording artists. And her dress is beautiful, to boot. She certainly worked to reclaim her footing in the competition, even if her last notes were flatter than a pancake.

Favorite of the Night: Melinda but only because Jordin’s last song wasn’t great.
On the Way Out: I’m hoping Blake’s gender keeps him safe. So LaKisha.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

thought of the day, 13: seis de mayo

I saw some kids playing in a bundle of cardboard trash on Friday afternoon and I thought, "Those poor kids are understimulated."

Also...sometimes ending up the only sober one on Drinko de Mayo is really fun...if you know what I mean.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

AI Top 6...again

I don’t know about you all, but I was underwhelmed with last week’s charity extravaganza of sad children and song. Despite that, I did, in fact, cry from about 8:50 to 10 PM. I thought Carrie Underwood and Kelly Clarkson both completely stole the show, considering I don’t remember anyone else’s performances. And I love Kelly, but girl needs to learn how to dress. She looked like Linda Ronstadt: the Fat Years.

I absolutely believed Jordin was going to get kicked off, if only for a moment. I guess they ultimately thought eliminating someone would be…uncharitable. Ha! I slay me.

Tonight is the music of Bon Jovi. I imagine it will be a challenge for the ladies to croak out something palatable. Let’s cross our fingers for everyone but LaKisha. Oops. Did I say that? And don’t forget…TWO must go tomorrow night!

OH MY GOD! Blake’s a brunet! (Is that how that’s spelled?)

Jon Bon Jovi, like Sting, only looks better with age. Phil’s singing first again, this time with “Blaze of Glory.” His rehearsal sounds great! Bon Jovi even got chills. I’m convinced Phil is no longer as vulnerable as he used to be. I think he’s fighting for that Top 4 spot…and I think he just might deserve it. He’s feeling this song, with his squinchy face and throwing his body around. Very impressive. (And Simon’s critique, I’m convinced, will only get Phil more votes.)

I read Jordin knew she was going to sing “Livin’ on a Prayer” right away. She looks awesome with her big diva hair and fake nosering and cute boy musicians onstage with her. She’s obviously more comfortable with the big, belty chorus. The verses were slightly painful. Oh no. This is the first time she looks a little like the amateur she actually is. But at least she can admit that. Hopefully that’s enough to keep her around…I think she must have a big enough fanbase, but I’m worried.

LaKisha refuses to sit in those steel stools, which look ridiculous and uncomfortable, because she wants the camera to get her slim side. She’s singing “This Ain’t a Love Song.” She has no idea who Bon Jovi is beyond having seen them on Oprah. I think she’s been living under a rock for 27 years. Uh oh. Bon Jovi is going to have to eat his words tomorrow. Or maybe not! She certainly picked the right song for herself this week. Girl is back to true form. This is the best she’s sung in weeks. I may have to eat my own words tomorrow night. Simon liked it so much he had to kiss her on the lips. Dirty.

Blake is singing “You Give Love a Bad Name,” and apparently it’s an “adventurous edition.” He’s such a risktaker, and Bon Jovi himself is not convinced. Oh my God. Whatever. If nothing else, all the horny young women in America will vote for him. That’s certainly enough to keep him on another week. He looks like a headliner with this performance. Such. A. Pro. And he makes my ankles sweat.

How do you follow that, Chris? He’s singing “Wanted Dead or Alive,” and Jon had to feed him the lyrics. I really want to like Chris more than I do, but he seems far out of his depth with this song. And he’s just straining to get the notes out. But he certainly left his guts out there for what might be his last performance on this national stage.

Melinda is last, and Jon Bon Jovi offers to teach her how to rock. Hot. She’s singing “Have a Nice Day,” and he tells her to take it to church. More cowbell! I’m proud of her for getting her hands so dirty with such a contemporary song, but this wasn’t her best. The attitude was hot, and I’m sure she’s safe again.

Hey! George Bush endorses American Idol. Does that mean we should stop watching?

Favorite of the Night: Blake
On the Way Out: Chris and LaKisha