Week 3, 18 performers, legendary music, and I’m still freaking out over how good this season of Songbird is turning out to be!
Newbies went head-to-head with the all-stars for the first time as the contestants tackled the iconic music of Michael and Janet Jackson!
Powerhouse performer-after-performer kept the crowd roaring and the show moving (thank God) all night long. Chali started us off with a “P.Y.T.”(Pretty Young Thing) mash-up and midriff for your nerve. Bringing out a crowd, very much like the one for the Pope this past weekend, Chali not only started the evening off right, but won the coveted Songbird Save– one of many Josh Schonewolf twists. She will be granted the ability to erase a bottom 3 one time this season, forcing the judges to reselect. Will she use this power for good or for evil? I hope the later.
Rob Anthony put his own spin on the theme with a Dirty Diana/Dark Horse club remix. Although exciting, it was clear that Rob did not process the judge’s notes from his last performance. With a mix that went on to a voice-exhausting length, awkward finger-to-nose mic technique, and a t-shirt/jeans/house-keys ensemble, Rob Anthony found his way to the bottom 3. Following up was Daniel Paugh with an acceptable Michael moon-walk (not like I could do one though), Jessie Braff dressed to impress with a voice as smooth as his chest, and Pop Princess Brianna Roth making us feel like we should be at an arena watching her strut her stuff. Katie Gin took us back to the 70’s with the Jackson 5- an excellent interpretation of the week’s theme. Birthday girl Lisa Parks, whose voice was back in full force, honored all those who have been lost to suicide with a stunning rendition of “I’ll Be There” making it clear that Parks is in it for the win this season. Finishing off the first half were Zach Ryan (and the Zach pack) with an acoustic “Billie Jean” and Krista Starr channeling Janet Jackson in a show stopping performance of “I Get Lonely” to close out the first half.
The second half stared off with Lobstar Bisque taking The WIZ route to the Jackson theme. Although always beautifully voiced and brimming with energy and fun, the competition is fierce this year and everyone’s favorite dish was served up cold in the bottom 3. And then there was Tait. Now, you have to picture this to believe it (Picture it- Sicily 1963…): 2 iPods (Apple is not a sponsor of Songbird) resting on 2 tables. Tait appears in a red leather, studded, Michael Jackson replica jacket opened up with nothing underneath (revealing that he needs to eat a hamburger…jealous- party of 1). “Smooth Criminal” begins as the iPads come to life with perfectly synched versions of Tait. This was a PERFORMANCE! Innovative, creative, and totally engaging from the get go. If you missed this, take to YouTube…find it on Facebook…do something! Just awesome.
So, how do you follow that? With the winner of the evening, Katie Mae. From note one, Mae’s voice soared through Tabu. Powerful and commanding, she sang the audience to their feet securing the winning spot and proved that it does not take all the bells and whistles to deliver the performance of the night. De’Soul,Keely Sibilia, Justine, Brittany Marie and Dan Callahan continued on with entertaining performances that were sure to keep them going into next week. In the mix was also Alyssa Canalichio, whose performance was quite the talk of the show. Complete with costumes, back-up dancers, and hay bales, Canalichio went full-tilt WIZ dressed as Michael Jackson’s iconic Scarecrow. The song was fine, and nice to see Alyssa back in her musical roots, but she was overpowered by everything she brought along and a very questionable make-up choice left most in the audience disenchanted with this fairy tale. Canalichio rounded out this week’s bottom 3.
So, what’s next? Newbies are still battling against the all-stars, although I am starting to feel like it is the other way around, as we enter into week 4- Celine Dion week! Who’s heart will go on and who won’t be coming back to me now? Stay tuned!
Winner– Katie Mae
Bottom 3- Alyssa Canalichio, Rob Anthony, Lobstar Bisque