Monday, June 29, 2009

Top 10 Idols Talk About Tour

The American Idol website has videos up of all of the Top 10 Idols talking about the upcoming tour.

Kris Allen talks about writing for the album and "trying to get some great songs". They will start recording during the tour. He's obviously looking forward to the Little Rock show, and he also says that they'll start touring for the album after it comes out and may do a college tour and some smaller venues.

Adam Lambert is looking forward to connecting live with the fans who supported them. Regarding his album, he says it's going to be rock, pop and electronic and "fresh". When asked who he'd like to duet with, he says that he's the new kid on the block, so he would be lucky to have anyone step in and do a duet with him. (Great answer!)

Danny Gokey is expecting to show who he is as an "artist and musician" during this tour. I sure hope so because I didn't get the impression that he had any idea during the show. Danny pimps Sophia's Heart Foundation and talks about how he wants to have an eyeglasses line and write a book.

Alison Iraheta calls the group a "dysfunctional family" that was feeling a little empty when they were separated. She re-iterated that she is going to continue to do rock music. And her mom and sister are going to trade off as her chaperon during the tour.

A couple of highlights from the others include Anoop Desai talking about how while they're excited for them, it's a little bit hard to see Kris, Adam and Allison work on their albums while they're trying to get to that point (gotta love the honesty), Matt Giraud talking about his first session with a vocal coach, and Lil Rounds saying she would consider Broadway or acting. Megan Joy says she heard a rumor that Stevie Nicks said she should try out to play her (?!) and that she would like to record children's songs and model and act and do cartoon voices. She basically wants to do it all. Michael Sarver number drops once again that he has written almost 900 songs and says he built a professional studio at home after he was voted off Idol. Scott MacIntyre won't say whether or not he will play guitar, for whatever reason.

Video Of The Day - Web Site Story

I love a good musical parody. I originally saw this link at EW.com, but it's from College Humor - a medley of songs from West Side Story that parodies a bunch of websites, like Evite, Pandora, Facebook and eHarmony.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

BET Awards Highlights

With just two days really to prepare, the people involved with the BET Awards did a credible job of adding in Michael Jackson tributes to the show. The highlight for me was Ne-Yo's performance of "Lady In My Life". Actually, anything Ne-Yo did tonight was amazing. He also killed it on BBD's "Poison" when he joined the group at the end. And his duet with host Jamie Foxx on "I'll Be There" at the end of the show was beautiful. Jamie Foxx was also outstanding tonight, as were Johnny Gill, Trey Songz and Tyrese with their O'Jays tribute.

Ne-Yo's "Lady In My Life":


Keith Sweat/Guy/BBD:


O'Jays tribute

Tyrese also had another great moment on the show when he came out in full "Baby Boy" character while Taraji Henson was onstage presenting. Ving Rhames also joined in, although it's not on this video: Jody and Yvette reunite

Also hysterical was Eddie Levert from the O'Jays accidentally cussing on live TV:


Beyonce sang "Ave Maria" & "Angel". She surprised me with her range on "Ave Maria" and with her taste in costumes. Haha.


And Janet Jackson made a surprise appearance at the end of the show with a brief speech about her late brother. She struggled to maintain her composure but thanked everyone for their support and said Michael would forever live in their hearts. Her speech segued into Jamie and Ne-Yo singing "I'll Be There".

(Edited to remove YouTube videos that got removed by Viacom)

More Interviews From AI Tour Rehearsal

Yahoo Music's Reality Rocks blog talked to each of the American Idol Top 10 finalists during tour rehearsals, with new video interviews up each day.

Not all of them are looking to reveal their tour songs, but Lyndsey Parker has noted a few nuggets while watching some of the rehearsals. There is a group performance of "Beggin'" by Madcon, during which Lil Rounds raps, but it is unclear as to who else is involved in this performance. If they are following the same exact format as last year, it will probably just be the Idols who placed 5-10. Scott MacIntyre and Matt Giraud are going to have a little bit of dueling piano action on "You Can't Hurry Love". And the group song at the end will be "Don't Stop Believing".



Here are links to the interviews:
Kris Allen
Adam Lambert
Lil Rounds
Scott MacIntyre
Megan Joy
Michael Sarver

Also doing interviews at tour rehearsal was Access Hollywood:
Part 1 - with Adam Lambert, Megan Joy, Matt Giraud and Anoop Desai
Part 2 - with Kris Allen, Allison Iraheta, Danny Gokey, Michael Sarver, Lil Rounds and Scott MacIntyre (Gokey and Sarver talk a lot about food here, and Lil thanks America for only voting in 3 women into the Top 10 because their bus will be empty. LOL)

And check out this hilarious interview from RadarOnline, where the interviewer tells Kris that his pecs look fantastic in his shirt, asks Anoop if the Indian revolution is here, and swaps jackets with Adam, making himself look like a "mid-life crisis".

BET Awards To Honor Michael Jackson Tonight

The BET Awards have been expanded to a 3.5 hour broadcast tonight to allow for an extended tribute to Michael Jackson. Billboard reports that Bobby Brown will reunite with New Edition to perform a Jackson 5 medley to open the show and that Beyonce, Jamie Foxx, Ne-Yo and Maxwell will also have tributes to Michael Jackson. There will also be some surprise performances, perhaps by Justin Timberlake and Usher, who were reportedly trying to catch last-minute flights to LA to make it for the show.

Other artists previously schedule to perform include Jay-Z, Kanye West, Queen Latifah, Soulja Boy, Keri Hilson, Mary Mary, Fabolous, T-Pain, Keyshia Cole, Monica, Young Jeezy, Trey Songz and Tyrese.

The show airs at 8 pm ET/PT tonight. Red carpet coverage begins at 6 pm.

Kris, Adam Talk Albums, Tour With People Magazine

People Magazine has a new interview with Kris Allen and Adam Lambert, talking with the two about their upcoming albums and life on the road on the Idol tour bus.

Kris was typically tight-lipped about details, saying just that that "I think the CD is going to be great, I really do. A lot of good songs" and that he thinks "people are going to be surprised, but in a good way, hopefully."

He also said this about the whirlwind process of recording and touring: "It’s a lot of work. For me, I felt like the songs would come easier writing-wise and collaborating with people. It’s just a process and you kind of have to get used to it and we’re very, very new to this and you’re kind of just thrown into, “Hey, you’re going make a CD in four months. And You’re going to be on tour for three of those months.” … We are music industry virgins, but I feel like we had the best experience and you kind of learn a lot from Idol, and you got to work hard."

Adam talked more about his collaborators (RedOne, Linda Perry, Greg Wells, Ryan Tedder, Sam Sparrow) and revealed that he co-wrote a song with Kara Dioguardi that he described as "awesome".

As far as the vibe of his album, he said, "In creating new material, I want to do something modern that will stand the test of time, and something that’s new. I’m being careful not to stay stuck in that sound, because it could end up being dated. So, I’m going to try to take the best musically from that era and make it mix with modern pop electronic production. It should be really different."

Adam also said he was looking forward to "banking that paycheck. I’m not going to lie, I mean, that’s not my first priority, but, you know, I think for all of us, having gone through experience, to be able to walk away with some financial security in these tough times is really nice."

And if you missed it on Friday, here's a link to listen to the Ryan Seacrest radio interview with Kris and Adam. At one point, they took calls from fans. The first caller sounded like a teenager who did an OMGIsthisKrisAllen?!, and the last two callers were older ladies who squeed over Adam. Get used to it, boys. It's only going to get crazier on the tour!

Video Of The Day - Filipino Prisoners' Michael Jackson Tribute

From the same Philippines prison that did the famous Thriller video, this is a new dance tribute to the late Michael Jackson, done by approximately 1,500 prisoners. This was all completed (choreographed, practiced, perfected) in 10 hours on June 27. The songs they dance to are "Ben", "I'll Be There" and "We Are The World".

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Kris Allen, Adam Lambert Duet In The Works?

Despite their musical differences, a Kradam duet is not something to be ruled out.

It may just be lip service, but Kris Allen and Adam Lambert told E!'s Marc Malkin this weekend that they would like to record together.

Adam said, "It could happen. Maybe we'll write a song on the road." And Kris added, "We have to figure it out, but yeah, we should do it."

It doesn't sound as random and out-there as one might think. While they have completely different styles, on the right song, their voices could blend together beautifully, as evidenced by their final Ford commercial to "I Will Remember You".

Kris and Adam's friendship has become a big story lately, especially after Adam's admission that he found Kris to be attractive. The media has made a big deal about how surprising and refreshing it is to have a straight man be cool with his gay roommate having a crush on him. There's even an article in today's New York Times about the gay-straight male relationship that uses Kris and Adam's relationship as an example. Malkin also talks about this.
No surprise, but the American Idol winner and runner-up have become as tight as any two best friends could be. So, just how close are they?

They both laugh when I ask Allen if Lambert is his "closest gay."

"As much time as we spend together, I would probably say so," Allen said.

And it works both ways. "He's definitely becoming my closest straight," Lambert said. "That's something I am trying to get across—that it doesn't frickin' matter. Just like when people were dealing with race relations. The moment we started getting over it as a society was the moment we stopped paying attention to the differences and paid attention to the similarities.

He continued, "People get so scared and uncomfortable with the ways in which they are different. I think it's a testament to Kris that he's completely comfortable in his own skin, comfortable with his sexuality. He's a straight man, he's married, and it's not threatening for him to be friends with a gay guy."

Or as the more reserved Allen put it, "That's what's wrong with the world. Why can't everyone just get along?"

Top 10 Michael Jackson Music Videos

Michael Jackson was a true music video pioneer, not only as the first African-American solo artist to get played on MTV, but with his ground-breaking videos. His videos were full-scale productions that were more like short films. They just don't make them like this anymore.

Here are what I would consider to be the Top 10 Michael Jackson music videos.

1. Thriller
This 14-minute horror film set to music is the greatest music video of all-time. The choreography (by Michael himself and Michael Peters) is iconic.


2. Black Or White
The premiere of this video came with great fanfare, premiering in prime time on MTV, BET and Fox. Like Thriller, this played like a short film, clocking in at 11 minutes, and it featured Macauley Culkin and George Wendt. A young Tyra Banks is also in this, as one of the morphing heads. This video was one of Michael's most controversial. Lots of complaints were made about the end of the video, where Michael began smashing cars and windows, grabbing his crotch, making neon signs explode and turning into a panther. It didn't offend me, but I did think the video went off the rails at that point. It didn't mesh with the tone of the first part of the video. The complaints led to this long version getting edited out, and the video that aired after the premiere stopped at the end of the song.


3. Remember The Time
Another cinematic type of video set in ancient Egypt, featuring top-notch special effects; big-time celebs, such as Eddie Murphy, Magic Johnson and Iman; and a classic dance break, choreographed by Fatima Robinson. Not to mention some classic Eddie Murphy faces.


4. Smooth Criminal
I think this video has the best choreography of all of Michael's videos. It may not be as memorable or iconic as the Thriller choreography, but overall the dancing here is outstanding. And the lean at the end of the video is just wow. Kudos to choreographer Jeffrey Daniel.


5. Billie Jean
This was Michael's first video played on MTV, and it featured his classic dance moves (on a relatively low-rate set!). The imagery of everything Michael touching lighting up was pretty appropriate, it turned out, as everything he touched back then turned gold.


6. Scream
This video, which cost $7 million to make, is a futuristic look at Michael and kid sister Janet hanging out in their spaceship. The black and white visuals are stunning.


7. Beat It
This video is an 80's gang-banger version of the Sharks vs. the Jets, with Michael bridging the two warring gangs through dance. It sounds so cheesy written like that, but Michael made it work. Again, the choreography here is iconic, as is the red jacket Michael wore in the video.


8. Bad
I didn't even remember that this was a long video until I searched for it. Nor did I remember that Wesley Snipes is in this. I just really remember the dancing in the subway station, starting around 7:30 on the video below. And "You ain't bad! You ain't nothin'! You ain't nothin'!"


9. The Way You Make Me Feel
The video is a simple premise - boy sees girl, boy chases girl, boy woos girl with awesome dance moves. I think this was the first video from Michael that showed him as a romantic lead.


10. Jam
The two great MJs (Michael Jackson and Michael Jordan) at their best and then doing their thing with each other (Jackson playing basketball with Jordan and then Jackson showing Jordan how to moonwalk). Classic.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Kris, Allison Join Twitter

Twitter hold-outs Kris Allen and Allison Iraheta finally got accounts. Kris (@KrisAllen4Real) just joined yesterday and already has over 27,000 followers. Allison (@Allison4Realzzz) just joined this afternoon and wasn't confirmed by any of the other finalists until about 5 pm, and she's already up to 2,600. Apparently, when the Idols talk, people listen.

Krallison may be new to this, but they've already had some fun Tweets.

From Kris: Best quote ever if you don't think this is awesome then you need to go to awesome school

From Allison (and I can totally hear her saying this out loud): My first shout out!!! waaaZZZZZZZZAAAAAAAAAAA??????!!!

American Idol To Re-Air Michael Jackson Night

For the first time ever, American Idol is going to air an old episode (I don't count the episode in Season 4 where they messed up the voting numbers and had to re-do the vote on Wednesday, showing the Tuesday performance with additional critiques from the judges). On Monday, June 29 at 8 pm, the Top 13 Michael Jackson performance show will be re-aired.

My hope is that instead of the judges comments, they will splice in comments from the Idols about Michael Jackson. But that would require work and time and money, and we all know how cheap Idol can be. Not that it would be a bad thing to get to hear Allison Iraheta say one more time, "I’m not dark. I’m not, like, cutting myself or anything." or see Katy Allen's bitchface after Simon says Kris should have not brought her out so early. Oh! And we'll get to see Megan Caw Caw again! Sweet!

At the time, my favorites that night, in order, were Matt Giraud's "Human Nature", Allison's "Give In To Me", Kris Allen's "Remember The Time" and Adam Lambert's "Black Or White". It'll be interesting to look back now and re-rank with biases now getting in the way. ;)

In other MJ-Idol news, Marc Malkin from E! talked to Kris and Adam about the King of Pop.

Adam remembered listening to Thriller, but Kris talked about how his first Michael Jackson album was Dangerous from 1991 (to which I go, 'DANGEROUS?! Ohhhh he wasn't even born when Thriller came out. Jesus.').

Kris on MJ:
"He was the most influential musical person that I had in my life. On the artist side of things, everything that he did was just so right. Every album that he did, it hit you in a way that just made you feel good. It made you feel him and feel his music. He was a genius, a complete genius."

Adam on MJ:
"His voice was just one of a kind. No one else sounds like him. Furthermore, the visual stuff he brought to the table was so groundbreaking and edgy and ahead of its time, in a way. There wasn't anyone else really going out there like that."

"He defied sexuality and race in a way that no one else has. He wasn't openly masculine or feminine. He was kind of somewhere in the middle in this androgynous space and at some point he was like, 'Black or white, it doesn't matter.' There were a lot of things he straddled the line of, and I think that was really cool."

Kradam was on E! News tonight talking about MJ:

Michael Johns Performs At Hollywood & Highland

Michael Johns performed out on the plaza at Hollywood & Highland Thursday night to promote his new CD "Hold Back My Heart" (which I keep mixing up with Brooke White's single "Hold Up My Heart" ... you two ... too confusing!). Michael performed mostly songs from his record but included a duet of "Hold On I'm Comin'" with American Idol backup singer Sharlotte Gibson and a snippet of "I'll Be There" in tribute to Michael Jackson.

Outside of the aforementioned, the highlight for me most definitely was "Fools Gold". Killer song, and Michael was really getting into it. I wish I had recorded it, but alas ... Michael also sang "Fire", "Mountains", "To Love Somebody", "Heart On My Sleeve", "Little Bear", "Feeling Alright" and "Hold Back My Heart". Great show, and Michael's voice sounded fantastic.

I already posted the video for "I'll Be There"). Here are "Hold On I'm Comin'" and "Heart On My Sleeve":



Kradam Lives! Bromances Are In

Kris Allen and Adam Lambert play up the Kradam rumors in an awesome interview for TV Guide Magazine. After Kris says what Adam fans gave him for a birthday present (headphone splitters so they could listen to tunes together and "cuddle"), Adam says the fans are "clearly misinterpreting our friendship", but as he says that, Kris slyly looks at the camera and puts his arm around Adam. Heh.

When discussing Adam's "crush" on Kris, Kris says he has a crush on Adam, who says they (the media) are going to run with that. Kris replies, "Yeah, I'm screwed."

Lots of LOLs in this.

LA Mourns Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson's death struck a chord in the Los Angeles community on Thursday, especially on the Westside, where all of the action took place. MJ was rushed from his home in Holmby Hills near Bel Air to the UCLA Medical Center in Westwood. Fairly quickly, fans and onlookers crammed into the grass area outside the Medical Center, where a large group of media was gathered to report the news of his hospitalization and subsequent death.

In Hollywood, Michael's star on the Hollywood Walk of the Fame was unfortunately inaccessible due to the red carpet premiere of "Bruno". So directly across the street, fans gathered around a floral wreath. I came in expecting sobbing fans, but what I saw instead was a bunch of people gathering around playing his music, singing and dancing. It was more like a celebration of Michael and his music.

















Thursday, June 25, 2009

Michael Johns Pays Tribute To Michael Jackson

During a concert at Hollywood & Highland tonight, Michael Johns paid tribute to Michael Jackson with a brief impromptu performance of "I'll Be There". Michael Johns mentioned that he had met Michael Jackson years back in Australia.

R.I.P. Michael Jackson

Legendary pop icon Michael Jackson died of a heart attack this afternoon at the UCLA Medical Center. He was 50 years old.

I don't have many words for this. He was the Elvis of my generation, and no matter what scandal or weirdness he had surrounding him, he was the biggest star on the planet for much of my lifetime. He will be missed.

And as someone said on the news today, hopefully now people will remember him for his greatness more so than for all the other stuff.

R.I.P. to one of the all-time greats in entertainment.

Farrah Fawcett Passes, Michael Jackson Rushed To Hospital

Just hours after original Farrah Fawcett passed away after battling cancer, Michael Jackson was rushed to the UCLA hospital after suffering from what TMZ is reporting as cardiac arrest. Helicopters are swirling around the hospital as we speak.

The LA Times reports that the 50-year old MJ was not breathing when paramedics arrived at the hospital.

Fawcett died at the age of 62 in a Santa Monica hospital. Her ex Ryan O'Neal said, "After a long and brave battle with cancer, our beloved Farrah has passed away. Although this is an extremely difficult time for her family and friends, we take comfort in the beautiful times that we shared with Farrah over the years and the knowledge that her life brought joy to so many people around the world."

R.I.P. Farrah. And well wishes to MJ.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Syesha A Dreamgirl? Oh lo!

TMZ is reporting that American Idol Season 7 Top 3 finalist Syesha Mercado has landed the lead role of Deena Jones in an upcoming international touring production of Dreamgirls. Deena is the role Beyonce played in the movie.

Syesha has experience singing the role - at least the movie version of it. She sang "Listen" on the AI7 tour last summer (and did an amazing job at it, I might add):

Butt Can They Dance?

The So You Think You Can Dance Top 16 show actually ended up being a Top 18 show after the addition of two extra contestants - Randi Evans' butt and Phillip Chbeeb's butt.

Randi's butt was the centerpiece of her Mia Michaels contemporary dance with her partner Evan Kasprzak. Phillip's butt unintentionally made a big cameo in his Broadway routine with partner Jeanine Mason after his pants split mid-routine. One thing is for certain - their dances were sure memorable, and I doubt they will be in the bottom 3 tomorrow.

In each couple's introduction video, they talked about what they would be doing if they weren't dancing.

Karla & Jonathan - Hip-Hop, choregraphed by Dave Scott ("By My Side" by Jadakiss feat. Ne-Yo)
If she wasn't a dancer, Karla would be a journalist, and Jonathan would be an acrobat with Cirque. Dave Scott choreographes a Bonnie & Clyde type of dance. Jonathan struggles with the attitude in rehearsal. He's not gangster at all. Things don't get much better in the performance. He's not believable by any means, and the synchronization is painfully off. That was so weak. Nigel is pretty nasty to them, even telling them they will be in the bottom 3.

Vitolio & Asuka - Jazz, choreographed by Mandy Moore ("Heartbreaker" by Pat Benatar)
Asuka says she'd make jewelry if she wasn't a dancer. Vitolio would be the lead singer in a band. Mandy calls her routine "thrash rocker jazz". Asuka has trouble in rehearsal and cries, but Vitolio is there for her. Someone get her a Latin ballroom routine already! Like the first couple, Asuka & Vitolio are not in sync with each other, but unlike Jonathan, Asuka does get the attitude down right.

Melissa & Ade - International-Style Rumba, choreographed by Tony Meredith ("Emotion" by Destiny's Child)
Melissa would be a pilates trainer if not a dancer, and Ade would be a sound engineer for TV shows. They struggle in rehearsal as well, but wow do they kill it in the performance. This is one dance where Melissa's maturity definitely works to her benefit. Wow, does she look hot! And that assisted illusion turn (I think?) was ridiculous! They were both terrific.

Janette & Brandon - Hip-hop, choreographed by Dave Scott ("What A World" by Common)
Brandon would be a lighting and design person as a second profession, and Janette would be working in a bank as a loan processor (which Brandon snickers at). The dance is a rock hip-hop, with Janette being the rocker and Brandon the hip-hopper. They each nailed their parts, especially Brandon at the hip-hop. Dayum, he was hitting it HARD.

Kayla & Kupono - Viennese Waltz, choreographed by Jean-Marc Genereaux ("Sweet Dreams For You" by Jewel)
Kayla loves to model, and Kupono loves costume designing. Rehearsal for them was, in Kayla's words, "kind of a mess". They are waltzing barefoot. What is this, Twitch and Kherington (without the sob story) all over again? Kayla is grinning like a fool, while Kupono has little emotion on his face. Eeek at the turn at the end. WOBBLY!!! Hot tamale train, Mary? REALLY?!

Randi & Evan - Contemporary, choreographed by Mia Michaels ("Koop Island Blues" by Koop. feat. Ane Brun)
Randi loves teaching kids, and Evan loves cars and would be a custom car shop owner if he wasn't dancing. Mia says the dance is "all about the booty." I don't know what to make of this dance. It is very WTF, but they seem to be doing all the right moves. Nigel spends so much of his critique trying to use the word "but". Toni Basil spends a lot of her critique sucking up to Mia Michaels. I think she did that last year too.

Caitlin & Jason - Paso Doble, choreographed by Jean-Marc & France Genereaux ("O'Fortuna" from Carmina Burana by the Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg & Kurt Prestel)
Caitlin's other career would have been broadcast journalism, while Jason would have been a soccer player. They have very dramatic costuming, but I didn't feel like there was a lot of drama in their dancing. It was not hard hitting enough for paso, and it looked a little sloppy at the end.

Jeanine & Phillip - Broadway, choreographed by Tyce Diorio ("Moses" from Singin' In The Rain)
Phillip would have been an inventor, while Jeanine would be an actress. That's perfect for her, then, doing Broadway. Phillip has trouble in rehearsal trying to jump over the couch but clears it easily on the show. At some point in the dance, though, he totally splits his pants. Doh! Good for him for not letting it affect him! This whole thing reminds me so much of Anya and Xander's duet on Buffy the Musical for some reason. Haha. This was Tyce's best Broadway number in a while.

My guesses for the bottom 3:
Karla & Jonathan
Asuka & Vitolio
Caitlin & Jason

Billboard Interviews Half Of The Idol Top 10

Billboard interviewed each of the American Idol Top 10 finalists in advance of the tour. Kris Allen's video, during which he talked about peeing between Randy and Simon before his audition in Louisville, was leaked earlier, although I'm not sure that I ever posted it here. Now some of the others are surfacing. To see the interviews with Anoop Desai, Matt Giraud, Megan Joy and Michael Sarver, go to Billboard.com. The other interviews with Adam Lambert, Danny Gokey, Allison Iraheta, Lil Rounds and Scott MacIntyre should be available "soon".

Here is Kris' interview:

Perez Hilton Hits Keep Coming - GLAAD Weighs In

After Perez Hilton acknowledged calling will.i.am a fa--ot just prior to getting hit by Black Eyed Peas Tour Manager Polo Molina he, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) issued a statement calling out Perez for doing so.
"These are vulgar anti-gay slurs that feed a climate of hatred and intolerance toward our community," said Rashad Robinson, Senior Director of Media Programs at GLAAD. "For someone in our own community to use it to attack another person by saying that it is, quote, 'The worst possible thing that thug would ever want to hear,' is incredibly dangerous. It legitimizes use of a slur that is often linked to violence against our community. And it sends a message that it is OK to attempt to dehumanize people by exploiting anti-gay attitudes.

"We have reached out to Hilton and asked him to apologize for promoting this anti-gay slur, and we would ask media outlets to avoid repetition of the slur in their coverage of this story."

Perez responded to GLAAD with a lengthy statement (that included no paragraph or line breaks) on his website, but I'm not really seeing so much of an apology. Here's a snippet:
My intention - however misguided it may have been - was to stand up for myself and tell this belligerent man that I had enough of his badgering and was not going to continue to let him berate and intimidate me. I wanted to hurt him with the word I chose, not anyone else. Unfortunately, the one who got hurt was me and, subsequently, a lot of other people. I wish none of it had happened. I can't take it back. I did what I thought was best at the moment to stand up for myself in a non-violent yet still assertive way.

GLAAD didn't see an apology either and issued a second statement:
"First and foremost it is important to remember that the violence committed against Perez Hilton is absolutely unacceptable and ought to be condemned in the strongest possible terms," said Rashad Robinson, Senior Director of Media Programs at GLAAD.

"Perez Hilton's acknowledgement that words can hurt is an important step in the right direction, and while his change of tone is welcome, he still seems to be justifying the use of the slurs," said Robinson. "A statement that stops short of apologizing for and disavowing the use of that slur doesn't get us where we need to be – these are vulgar anti-gay slurs that feed a climate of hatred and intolerance that continues to put our community in harm's way. When someone from our community uses a far-reaching media platform to promote these kinds of slurs, it sends a message that it's OK to use these dehumanizing words."

"This is an important moment. Now that Perez Hilton has acknowledged that words can hurt, GLAAD calls on him to take this opportunity to reflect on his use of demeaning and defamatory language against many different communities on PerezHilton.com - not as Perez Hilton, but as Mario Lavandeira, an openly gay man who just went through a scary and traumatic experience."

Perez is suing Molina for battery and intentional affliction of emotional distress.

Breckin Meyer and Zac Efron did a spoof of Perez's video at FunnyOrDie.com:

One-On-One Interviews Between Idols

This is a really cute idea. The Los Angeles Times had the Idols interview each other one-on-one from tour rehearsals. Kris Allen and Adam Lambert interviewed each other, and Kris and Allison Iraheta also interviewed each other. Matt Giraud and Anoop Desai paired up, as did Megan Joy and Lil Rounds.

Allison interviewing Kris, who takes a phone call from "P. Diddy", which prompts Allison to also take a call. Allison later asks Kris what it's like to rehearse with all the losers:


Kris interviewing Allison, who proceeds to freak out:


Adam likes Kris' announcer's voice (LOL at Kris chucking the water bottle at the end):


Kris tells Adam that his wife Katy is going to come to some shows "to hang out with you":


You can watch the rest here on the LA Times' YouTube page.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Kris Allen In Parade Magazine

In a Q&A with Parade Magazine, Kris Allen talks about married life, his earlier songwriting ventures and Adam Lambert not stealing his thunder.

The most interesting new reveal in this article is that "The Real World" was the first song Kris wrote and that he thinks it's "horrible". Wow. If he categorizes THAT song as "horrible", his upcoming stuff is going to be amazing. I wonder if he even knows the song is up on his MySpace. Heh.

This is what he has to say about writing:
"I was in my first year of college, and I wrote a song called 'The Real World' and it was horrible! But you live and you learn. The thing that inspires me the most [when I write] is stuff that is happening in my life at that time. Whether it be the good, the bad, whatever. It's just about different people, friends, family and my wife."

He also talks about being open-minded:
"Me and Adam are really good friends. I learned from going to different countries and seeing different people that you can't have a one-track mind about anything. There are so many unanswered questions. I'm never going to rule out anything so you have to have an open mind and it's just about getting along with people and just having fun while we're on Earth."

And about married life:
"It's nothing normal. It's more like the craziest boyfriend-girlfriend situation right now. It doesn't feel too much like we're married just because it's a completely different married life than we've expected, but it's still really good. We've learned that you gotta take things a little bit differently being like this. [if it wasn't for Idol] it would probably be just me and my wife sitting and having a comfortable life, and that would have been fine too. But it happened to work out this way."

Also, Michael Johns shared a cute story of an encounter with Kris' mom at the finale this year. This was in Rodney Ho's blog in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
“It was funny,” he said. “I was walking into the Nokia Theatre. A lady pulled me over and said, ‘I’m Kris’ mom. No way you were voted off because of me. Every week, I just looped up the phone!’ We took a photo together. I didn’t expect that.”

She asked him, “What do you think of Kris’ chances?”

I said, “I think he’s going to win.”

Johns said he’s now two for two because David Cook’s mom asked him the same question last year before the finale.

Kelly Clarkson Laughs At Perez Hilton

Kelly Clarkson get her jollies at the whole Perez Hilton/will.i.am incident in a radio interview on Monday.

She jokes about how will.i.am's manager is going to get a lot of flowers, and when told that Perez was in tears on their show earlier, she laughes and says, "You're hurtful to children. No one's going to pity you!" She does clarify that she doesn't think anyone should be punched and doesn't condone the violence, "but I see why".

Kelly also discusses how her older sister ruined Madonna, Michael Jackson and the New Kids on the Block and about why she isn't dating ("because everyone keeps calling me a lesbian! I'm getting no help! It's not helpful!").

Kelly is playing State Fairs this summer and will be doing a bigger tour in the Fall, with the Veronicas as her opening act.



And in other Kelly news, she says in a Reader's Digest interview that she was told by Idol crew members at her finale in season 1 that they didn't think she should have won and that "it wasn't like everyone was rooting for me."

WTF?!

First of all - RUDE! Second of all, the judges, at least, were so wanting Kelly to win in the finale that Randy Jackson didn't even acknowledge Justin Guarini. And Justin has even said that he was afraid that if he had won, there would have been a riot in the Kodak because everyone loved Kelly so much. Very interesting ...

Michael Johns, Brooke White To Tour Together In August

I'm not sure if this is new news or old news, but this is the first I've heard about it - Michael Johns and Brooke White will be touring together in August. Michael says to BlogCritics.org that he and Brooke "just really like each other and our sound has similar fans. She is one of my favorite singers around. I think people will hopefully enjoy what we do."

Michael will also go on tour with David Foster and Friends in October, and that he did indeed try to do "Never Tear Us Apart" on acoustic guitar on Idol but, in interesting wording, "was told the song wasn't allowed." Stupid Nigel.

Michael's CD "Hold Back My Heart" drops today. You can listen to the full CD on AOL this week. His first single "Heart On My Sleeve" is currently #27 on the AC airplay charts.

Brooke's CD "High Hopes and Heartbreak" comes out on July 21. The first single "Radio Radio" is available now on Amazon.com and iTunes.

And if you haven't heard it yet, check out Michael and Brooke's awesome duet "Life Is Okay".

And a belated congratulations to another AI7 alum Carly Smithson, who has formed a band with three former Evanescence band members, including Ben Moody. The band is called The Fallen. If you are one of the first 100,000 to sign up on their website, you can get a free download of their first single "Bury Me Alive".

Monday, June 22, 2009

The Fray's Joe King On Kris Allen

MTV interviewed Joe King of The Fray about his recent collaboration with Kris Allen at Timbaland's studio in Virginia Beach.

King had some great things to say about Kris, saying "He has all the elements it takes. He has a phenomenal voice and an incredible work ethic. He's passionate about what he's doing, and that's what's going to sell him."

The two hooked up when Kris contacted him via email, and they met in Virginia Beach. Said King, "It was a very good vibe in the studio. There was no pressure — we just had breakfast, got to know each other. It was all very organic after that."

Timbaland was not in the studio during this, but his brother was and told King that if Timbaland heard the melody of the song they were working on, "he'd walk in the studio and say, 'That's a melody.'"

King said of the demo they worked on: "I'm literally in the studio mixing the rough demo right now. It doesn't have a title yet. It doesn't even have lyrics — but there is a lot of gibberish."

Rolling Stone also picked up on the news from Friday's Billboard article of Kris working with King and other big-names, and some of the gossip sites, like Just Jared, ran paparazzi pics of Kris and Katy out to dinner last night. The Insider also had a quick video of that, followed by Keanu Reeves walking into the same restaurant, right where Kris was standing, just minutes later.

Nice to see Kris getting some good press lately. Coincidence or not that this all came after Michael Slezak of Entertainment Weekly wrote about Kris being potentially shafted by 19E? Hmm ... (thanks, Slezak!)

Chris Brown Pleads Guilty

This photo isn't of the police carting Chris Brown off to jail. It sure looks like it, though! He will not have any jail time after pleading guilty to one count of felony assault. Instead, his lawyers negotiated a plea in which he will have five years of supervised probation and six months of community labor, which he can do in Virginia, his home state.

Does community labor = picking up trash from the side of the freeways? Cause that would be kind of awesome.

From the Associated Press:

Chris Brown has plead guilty to one count of felony assault on pop star Rihanna.

Brown entered his plea before a preliminary hearing was scheduled to start in Los Angeles on Monday. Brown is in the process of waiving his rights.

Brown's alleged victim, Rihanna, had been on standby to testify on Monday.

Brown's attorney, Mark Geragos, says the deal includes five years of supervised probation and six months of community labor.

The judge expressed some concerns because Brown is not a California resident, but it appears Brown will be allowed to do his community service in his home state of Virginia. He'll have to return to California for updates every three months.

More Idol Tour Songs Leaked

Thanks to some media reports today, a couple more tour songs were revealed for the upcoming American Idol tour. Yahoo Music's two-part video interview with Kris Allen got the first scoop for any part of his setlist. He is NOT doing "Falling Slowly" (bummer, but that's not the right venue for it) but is doing "Hey Jude" (!!), which was not cleared for him during rock week. "Hey Jude" could be epic, people. Sing-along time! "Na na na na na na na/Na na na na Hey Jude".

The Associated Press has an article from tour rehearsals and describes the group rehearsing on "Don't Stop Believing", with Matt Giraud and Scott MacIntyre on dueling pianos.

So here's what we have more or less confirmed so far:
Kris Allen - 5 songs - "Hey Jude", "Heartless", "No Boundaries", "Ain't No Sunshine", "Bright Lights" (assumed based on iTunes pass video)
Adam Lambert - 5 songs - "Starlight", "Mad World", "Whole Lotta Love", "Slow Ride" with Allison Iraheta, David Bowie medley (including "Fame", "Life on Mars" and "Just Dance")
Danny Gokey - 4 songs - "My Wish", "PYT"
Allison Iraheta - 4 songs - "Slow Ride" with Adam Lambert, "Cry Baby", "Barracuda" and a Pink song
Matt Giraud - "Georgia On My Mind", "You Found Me"
Anoop Desai - "My Prerogative"
Lil Rounds - ??
Scott MacIntyre - ??
Megan Joy - 2 songs - "Tears Dry On Their Own" by Amy Winehouse
Michael Sarver - 2 songs (none from Idol)
Group - "Beggin'" (not sure if this is the whole group; it might just be those in the 1st act) and "Don't Stop Believing" (whole group)
Edited: July 1

If I'm missing any, please let me know and I'll continue to update here. Thanks!

Celebrity Feud: Will.I.Am vs. Perez Hilton

Duking it out in person, as well as online via Twitter and website videos, are Will.I.Am of the Black Eyed Peas and blogger Perez Hilton.

Apparently, there was an altercation between the two late last night at a Toronto nightclub after the MMVAs, and it resulted in Perez being roughed up by the BEP's manager, Polo Molina, who turned himself into authorities on Monday morning. It appears as if the incident started when Fergie confronted Perez about trashing her and the band on his website. Perez allegedly insulted her further, and then later in the night Will.I.Am confronted him about it and told him to stop writing about them on his website. The Associated Press reports that Perez said that during this exchange he called Will.I.Am a "faggot". Who knows exactly what happened after that, but Perez and Will.I.Am have differing viewpoints.

Perez took to Twitter to tell the world that Will.I.Am and his security guards beat him up: "I was assaulted by Will.I.Am of the Black Eyed Peas and his security guards. I am bleeding. Please, I need to file a police report. No joke."

His next two posts were: "Still waiting for the police. The bleeding has stopped. I need to document this. Please, can the police come to the SoHo Met Hotel." and "I spoke to my lawyer. I really need to talk to the authorities. Please come to the SoHo Met Hotel. Have called the police. Need them here."

Because if you need the police, Twitter is the best way to reach them? Not 911? Idiot.

A little later on, he goes on to Tweet: "I won't be talking about this any further. It is in the hands of the authorities."

About 20 Tweets later, he's still talking about it. And posting an 11-minute long video about it on his website. You can watch it on TMZ.

And here is Will.I.Am's video, where he denies hitting him:

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Kelly Clarkson Performs At Much Music Video Awards

Original American Idol Kelly Clarkson performed "My Life Would Suck Without You" at the Much Music Video Awards in Canada tonight. Dressed in a backless shirt and too-long jeans, Kelly gave a performance in which the only pop and sizzle was her powerhouse vocals.



Contrast that to Lady GaGa, whose medley of "Love Game" and "Poker Face" had a set that had a subway car, a ton of backup dancers, and lots of pyro, including pyro coming out of her boobs at the end. Seriously. Oh, and she needs better coverage with her underwear. That was unsightly.



Lady GaGa beat Kelly out for Best International Video, winning for "Poker Face".

Kris Allen Fans Wish Him Happy Birthday

I usually snark on birthday projects for Idols, but I have to give the Kris Allen fans at ONTD_AI their props for this birthday video. They got a bunch of people to contribute a photo of them holding up a word from "No Boundaries" and put it all together in video set the song. It's very well done, and apparently they put it all together in 5 days and got contributions from all over the world. Very impressive.

Keep a look out for Idol Top 36 contestants Ricky Braddy and Alex Wagner-Trugman. Also, check out the still of the word "Yeahhhhh" written on the shoes near the 3:00 mark. It says "Capes!!!" under it. LOL at the homage to the Best Week Ever skit.

The great thing is that Kris apparently knows about this video and was looking for it last night, according to Matt Giraud (who also says Kris is going to be getting a Twitter page soon. Did you sign a deal with the devil, Kris? haha).

David Cook Apparently Loves The 80's

David Cook has been adding a new 80's cover to his setlist each of his last two concerts, covering "Shattered Dreams" by Johnny Hates Jazz in Del Mar and "I Just Died In Your Arms" by Cutting Crew in Kansas City last night.

I guess this shouldn't be too much of a surprise since he has been doing "Hot For Teacher" by Van Halen and "Little Lies" by Fleetwood Mac in past concerts, and he famously covered "Hello" and "Billie Jean" on American Idol. I would like to officially put in my request for a rocked out "Don't Dream It's Over" by Crowded Hosue next. Or maybe "I Melt With You" by Modern English. Maybe "Missing You" by John Waite.

Here are his latest 80's covers.

I Just Died In Your Arms:


Shattered Dreams:

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Idols Have Fun With Twitter

The American Idol Top 10 had a full rehearsal day today but found enough free time to post Twitpics during rehearsal.

From Michael Sarver (@michaelsarver1), the photo to the left of him, Danny, Anoop, Matt and the girls.

Danny Gokey (@dannygokey) posted three pictures: Danny, Matt and the girls, Danny with the girls and Kris, Anoop and Allison showing that they're Macs and not PCs.

Anoop Desai (@AnoopDoggDesai) shared a few pics: Megan Joy and Danny, Lil Rounds, Allison Iraheta.

Matt Giraud (@MGiraudOfficial) Tweeted this apparent setlist hint: "I was just hanging out on the corner of 1st and Amistad..." That is a line in "You Found Me". Sweet. His studio version of this is great, btw.

Adam Lambert (@therealGlambert) inexplicably Tweeted where exactly he's going to be and at what time tonight (Culver City's Kirk Douglas Theater at 8 pm for those who are looking to stalk). That will be paparazzi/fangirl city tonight, I'm sure.

Scott MacIntyre (@IdolScott) also Tweeted his destination tonight, but somehow I doubt the paps will specifically follow him there.

Twitterless so far are Kris Allen (who has been quoted as saying Twitter is the devil!), Allison Iraheta, Lil Rounds and Megan Joy. But you can follow Paula Abdul (@PaulaAbdul) and Ryan Seacrest (@RyanSeacrest).

ETA that both Kris and Allison got themselves Twitter accounts. You can find them here: @KrisAllen4Real and @allison4realzzz.

This blog just linked up with Twitter this weekend, so if any regular readers want to get Tweets when new posts are up, you can follow @h2ocoolerconvo. (WaterCoolerConvo is too long, apparently!)

Video Of The Day - Lakers On Jimmy Kimmel

A group of Los Angeles Laker players, including Kobe Bryant, Derek Fisher, Pau Gasol and Trevor Ariza, guested on the Jimmy Kimmel Show last night:

Part One (check out Fisher and Kobe's reactions to Kimmel asking Gasol if winning the championship will make women "more enthusiastic about making love to you", around the 5:40 mark):


Part Two (lots of laughs at DJ Mbenga's expense):

Friday, June 19, 2009

Adam Lambert Early Recordings Being Cashed In On

Hi Fi Recordings and Wilshire Records are going to release an album of Adam Lambert songs that he recorded a few years ago after being hired as a studio singer.

Hi Fi CEO John Hecker was quoted as saying: "We were presented with a business opportunity. We accepted because Wilshire Records had a long working relationship with Adam, and it resulted in excellent music that they had the rights to. The music has an audience, and it deserves to be heard. I think it's great music. At the end of the day, from my perspective, we're really helping Adam."

Um, how?! By releasing old and inferior stuff in advance of his major label debut and cashing in on his fame? That helps him how?

Adam issued a response to this, which was posted at Entertainment Weekly: "Back in 2005 when I was a struggling artist, I was hired as a studio singer to lend my vocals to tracks written by someone else. I was broke at the time and this was my chance to make a few bucks, so I jumped at the opportunity to record for my first time in a professional studio. The work I did back then in no way reflects the music I am currently in the studio working on. I'm thrilled to be working with some of today's hottest songwriters and producers and can't wait for people to hear what my music really sounds like."

The alleged first single from the album is called "Want", and Perez Hilton posted the song on his website. It doesn't even really sound like Adam, and the song, frankly, sucks and is nothing like what he has been saying he'll be doing now. He doesn't seem to want it out, and this is not going to help his career any if it does get out, unless it inexplicably charts or sells well. But I would hope that the Glamberts refuse to buy this and line these greedy bastards' pockets because I doubt Adam's going to see a cent of the profits.

American Idol Releases Season 8 Album

Entertainment Weekly is reporting that American Idol is releasing a Season 8 Album exclusively at Wal-Mart on June 30. Thankfully they are not calling it a "Greatest Hits" album because ... really ... it isn't. Less than half got their best songs on it: Adam (SHOCKER!), Scott MacIntyre, Megan Joy and Michael Sarver.

Kris Allen - you know the guy who WON - got one of his best live songs ("She Works Hard For The Money"), but that song also happens to be one of his worst studio songs. The overproduced and repetitive studio track kills me everytime I listen to it. Where the hell is "Falling Slowly" or "Ain't No Sunshine" or "To Make You Feel My Love"?! I figured "Come Together" would be too expensive to put on there, but that's one of his best studio tracks. He also got "No Boundaries" to lead off the CD, but the CD also ends with Adam's "No Boundaries". So if your CD ends and jumps back to the opening track, you get to hear that song back-to-back. Uh, PASS!

I'm not sure why they are making albums available now since all of these songs have been on iTunes. I think the last album they had was for Season 5, before they started recording studio versions starting in Season 6. If they really wanted to make some money, they would have the Idols do brand-new songs that haven't already been recorded, like their Top 36 songs, their audition songs or Hollywood round songs. But that would require common sense from AI and 19. Can you imagine a CD of this?

Kris Allen - "A Song For You" or "Everything"
Adam Lambert - "Bohemian Rhapsody"
Danny Gokey - "Kiss From A Rose"
Allison Iraheta - "Alone" or "Because Of You"
Matt Giraud - "Georgia On My Mind"
Anoop Desai - "My Perogative"
Lil Rounds - "Be Without You"
Scott MacIntyre - "And So It Goes" (NOT Home! heh)
Megan Joy Corkrey - "Can't Help Lovin' That Man" or "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree"
Michael Sarver - "I Don't Want To Be"

Jesus, they could have made a boatload off this.

Instead, this is what they're putting out:
1. Kris Allen, "No Boundaries"
2. Danny Gokey, "Stand By Me"
3. Allison Iraheta, "I Can't Make You Love Me"
4. Matt Giraud, "Human Nature"
5. Adam Lambert, "Mad World"
6. Kris Allen, "She Works Hard for the Money"
7. Lil Rounds, "I Surrender"
8. Scott MacIntyre, "Just The Way You Are"
9. Michael Sarver, "You Are Not Alone"
10. Megan Corkrey, "Walkin' After Midnight"
11. Anoop Desai, "Always On My Mind"
12. Adam Lambert, "No Boundaries"

Big. Fat. MEH.

Album News From Kris, Adam

Billboard.com has some preliminary album news on Kris Allen and Adam Lambert.

Kris has been pretty tight-lipped about the process so far, but a few Tweets did emerge from songwriters David Hodges and Claude Kelly, who said they were writing with Kris, and there were other Twitter reports of Kris being at the Fray concert in Virginia Beach, leading to speculation that he was either writing or recording with the Fray, Timbaland or the Neptunes. Billboard confirms that Kris went to Timbaland's studio to work with The Fray's guitarist Joe King.
In fact, sources tell Billboard.com that he's been working with some of the top songwriters and producers, including David Hodges (Kelly Clarkson, Daughtry), Salaam Remi (Nas, Amy Winehouse) and Claude Kelly (Akon, Leona Lewis). Allen also hit Timbaland's studio in Virginia Beach to work with Joe King of the Fray, whose take on Kanye West's "Heartless" inspired Allen's own performance of the song during the competition. Allen attended the group's show that evening after the writing session.

While Allen has been experimenting with some urban-influenced styles, he's honing the material for the album in a John Mayer/Jason Mraz direction. "Each writing session has been a learning experience," he says. "I think that we are trying to figure it out and that it's going the right way and I'm really excited about it. I can't wait."

Adam has been working with Lady GaGa producer RedOne, and Billboard also reveals he has been working with David Hodges as well. He's not mentioned by Billboard, but Adam has also been working with Ferras.

Kris also revealed some good info on his Comcast chat Thursday and his Oprah.com interview. We finally found out what he sang in his unaired audition clips - his first Hollywood solo was "For Once In My Life" by Stevie Wonder, and his sing-off song was "Everything" by Michael Buble (the judges had them both sing their last Hollywood round solo). He says that "Wipe It Away" is one his favorite songs that he's written (MINE TOO!) and that he had a tumor when he was 13 and had a rib removed. Nice little backstory that TPTB didn't exploit use.

In regards to the album, he says:
It's going to be more of a... I think it's going to have that acoustic feel, but not too much. It's going to have probably a little more rock feel than people think it's going to, which is cool. But also good stuff that people will want to listen to. More along the lines of pop rock.

and
I will not compromise lyrics ... I have to get emotionally involved and cheesy lyrics I will not get emotionally involved with, so that's one thing I will not compromise on

Kris gave a total swoon-worthy answer when asked about his creative inspiration (can we clone him, seriously?):
Someone asked me awhile back, "Why do artists always write about love?" And I was like, "Love is the coolest thing that's ever happened in the world." I feel like that's definitely an inspiration. And in different situations as well—loving friends or going through a hard time with love, or me and my wife…or seeing other people love each other. That's definitely like the biggest inspiration. When it goes good or when it goes bad. That's something creatively I think about it.

And another great quote to come out of that Billboard article is about the Adam "crush" on Kris:
"He was so funny," Allen says. "He texted me that day, like, 'I'm so embarrassed.' I'm like, 'No, are you serious? Don't be embarassed. I think that's hiliarious.' My wife, she's so funny. She was like, 'Tell Adam I have a crush on HIM.' "

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Bottom 3 Surprises On SYTYCD

I didn't see THIS coming. After some big surprises and three more different couples hitting the bottom 3, the judges eliminated Ashley Valerio and Max Kapitannikov from So You Think You Can Dance. Ashley's lack of dancing in her solo made that decision predictable, but Max was on fire in his solo, while Kupono danced like Caitlin's velociraptor but was saved because he's "different". Ugh.

The show started with a Mia Michaels-choreographed dance to "Higher Ground" by Stevie Wonder. Ade was front and center. The new male chosen one?

Cat Deeley, looking very Princess Di-esque in a white tuxedo suit, brought out the first three groups - Melissa/Ade, Caitlin/Jason and Jeanine/Phillip. Melissa/Ade were declared safe first, and then Caitlin/Jason were announced as being in the bottom 3, with Jeanine/Phillip safe.

Janette/Brandon, Jonathan/Karla, Kupono/Ashley were grouped together next. Janette/Brandon were safe, followed by Jonathan/Karla, putting Kupono/Ashley in the bottom 3. Both of Shane Sparks' routines in the bottom. OUCH. He is SO not coming back.

Before giving the last group its fate, Cat had a little surprise for Evan - a video clip of his brother Ryan auditioning for season 6. No surprise, but he made it to Vegas! And apparently Evan didn't know! And Cat admitted she cried! Awwww. Randi/Evan got more good news - they were safe! Between Asuka/Vitolio and Kayla/Max, it was pretty obvious to me who would be safe. And WHOAH I was so wrong. HOLY CRAP! I didn't think the early pimping would have hurt Kayla this early!

The special guest dancer was Amrapali Ambegaokar, who danced to "Ganesh Toda Tatkar" by Guru Sundarlal Gangani & Smt. Anjani Ambegookar.

Caitlin danced to "Make You Feel My Love" by Adele AGAIN! Jason danced to "Superman" by Robin Thicke. Ashley danced to "By Your Side" by Coco Rosie. And she didn't do a whole lot of dancing. Just a lot of posing. Kupono danced to "Many Moons" by Janelle Monae and looked like he was doing Caitlin's velociraptor dance. Ugh. I'd toss that pair in a heartbeat. Kayla did a solo to "Walking on Air' by Kerli, and Max did his to "Footloose" by Kenny Loggins. LOL cheesy song. But wow, that was actually a very impressive dance. Good for him.

While the judges deliberated, Kristinia DeBarge made her TV "singing" debut with her hit song "Goodbye". Total lip-sync job. LAME.

Nigel came back with the news and said it was not unanimous with either of the two going home. With the girls, Nigel told Caitlin she had great quality of movement and great control. Ashley's "Hollywood glamour" was praised, but they didn't think her solo had any substance, and they thought Kayla had too much going on in her solo. Ashley unsurprisingly was sent home. Her goodbye video was to "Already Gone" by Kelly Clarkson. Looks like they might be sticking to the same song each week (the guys' goodbye video is to "On Your Own" by Green River Ordinance).

With the guys, Jason was told that his solo was exceptionally strong and the best solo of the series to date, and then he was declared safe right away. Kupono was told his solo had no substance, but they like that he is different. Max got the you're a hard worker critique and then was sent home. WHAT THE HELL?! How does Kupono outlast Max with two bad dances this week? And how does the clearly inferior ballroom dancer Jonathan outlast him too? Ugh. So now Kayla and Kupono are paired up. I'm sure they will get contemporary next week. Sigh. He is lucky he's paired with the chosen one.

So with a new bottom 3, that makes four couples now who have never been in the bottom: Jeanine/Phillip, Janette/Brandon, Randi/Evan and Melissa/Ade. The latter surprises me a little bit simply because they barely got any airtime prior to the Top 20, whereas the other three guys were all popular auditioners from the previous year. Good for Melissa & Ade. They may be the Allison Iraheta & Kris Allen of this year's SYTYCD. :)

This episode's music: