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Same Song, Different Singer: Comparing Idol Performances


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#271

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Posted Mar 31, 2011 @ 5:32 PM

I'm Still Standing. Neither was very good, but I'll take Naima over Diana. At least Naima was trying to do something with it. Diana was just tuneless yelling.

Rocket Man. Going with JPL here.

Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me. Is None Of The Above an option? Although I do have a soft spot for Jorge's version.

Tiny Dance. Stefano. And it's not really close.

Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word. Robbie, then Jacob. Von a very distant third.

#272

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Posted Mar 31, 2011 @ 10:30 PM

Aw, I just remembered how much I adored JPL. Not his singing or anything, just my gap-toothed little teddy bear. Aw.

I know this is sacrilege in some parts, but I put Bo's DLTSGDOM even with Clay's. And my favorite version will always be that strange-haired Clay surprising that wannabe person at the Season 5 Finale. I laughed until my stomach ached.

I've already owned my Von love and I'd give SSTBTHW to Robbie, then Von, then Jacob. I'm over Jacob - we can move on now, there's nothing more to see there.

#273

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Posted Apr 6, 2011 @ 9:11 PM

"Man in the Mirror": Kris Allen (S8), Jacob Lusk (S10): This may just be my opinion, but I feel like Kris's performance was the performance that broke Season 8. The S8 semifinals were totally rigged, but Kris managed to break through that. I give this performance a lot of credit just for that. Jacob was also good, but Kris wins this.

"Piece of My Heart": Nikki McKibbin (S1), Candice Coleman (S2), Carrie Underwood (S4), Asia'h Epperson (S7), Haley Reinhart (S10): This is the performance that Carrie has probably tried to forget. One of her worst that season. There's no clear winner. Nikki, Candice, Asia'h, and Haley all fall somewhere around 'meh.'

"A Natural Woman": Kelly Clarkson (S1), Leslie Hunt (S6), Ann Marie Boskovich (S8), Lauren Alaina (S10): This was Kelly's breakout moment and anyone who sings it will be compared to her. I also still think Ann Marie deserved a wildcard spot, but like I said before, she didn't fit into the "Season 8 Plan."

"River Deep, Mountain High": Amanda Avila (S4), Pia Toscano (S10): I was and probably still am one of the only ones that liked Amanda's performance and thought she was robbed. Would've loved her in the Top 12 that year. Pia was probably technically better, but I kinda still liked Amanda more.

"When A Man Loves A Woman": Justinn Waddell (S1), Christina Christian (S1), Gedeon McKinney (S5), Michael Lynche (S9), Stefano Langone (S10): Err...well...Gedeon and Michael were alright. Stefano also wasn't bad. Christina had too much vibrato but wasn't awful. Justinn was not good...

Edited by pk124, Apr 7, 2011 @ 2:28 PM.


#274

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Posted Apr 6, 2011 @ 10:05 PM

Christina had too much vibrato


Heh. The original goat girl. She could out-vibrato Carmen any day of the week. She was one gorgeous girl, though.

Kris gets MITM by a mile, maybe two miles.

I have never seen what was so bad about Carrie's POMH. She was straight up doing the Faith Hill version and was very animated - they scared her so badly with their critiques she didn't move around again until she did "Love is a Battlefield". I give credit to Haley for going all out for the Janis version. Asia'h's was kind of a hybrid and I don't remember Nikki's. I think Candice went for Janis, but not well.

I thought Lauren's vocal was excellent. Kelly's is remembered mostly for the surprise factor, and sure it was a belting masterpiece, but that shouldn't take away from what Lauren did with it.

Gedeon pwned WAMLAW. I love my little teddy bear Stefano, but he's toast.

#275

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Posted Apr 6, 2011 @ 11:11 PM

Kris gets MITM by a mile, maybe two miles.


I'll even give him five miles.

#276

BadLilSister

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Posted Apr 7, 2011 @ 2:23 AM

One more version of "Natural Woman" to throw into the mix: Crystal Bowersox (S8 - Hollywood Round). I think Kelly still wins this round, but I enjoyed Crystal's version too.

ETA: Ramiele Malubay (S7 - Cattle Call Audition). Worst version of the bunch in my opinion.

Edited by BadLilSister, Apr 7, 2011 @ 2:29 AM.


#277

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Posted Apr 7, 2011 @ 3:44 AM

Crystal's "Natural Woman" was a magic moment when she went from a name on the leaked list to someone I perked up and noticed, and I thought "She's got something" and never stopped being a fan. I'll never forget the first time I saw that, and I have viewed it (and "If It Makes You Happy" from that round) many times since. But while it's cool to remind each other of pre-competition appearances for the songs, I like the usual format of only ranking the ones shown "in full" and formally judged (...to the extent that anything like judging happens now), with a safe/not-safe verdict pending. Otherwise, we'd have to expand the database a lot. I might give Siobhan's H-wood "Living For The City" the edge over both Taylor's and James's.

Edited by Bastille, Apr 7, 2011 @ 3:08 PM.


#278

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Posted Apr 8, 2011 @ 12:47 AM

Oh my. I had totally forgotten about Crystal's "Natural Woman" (as well as "If It Makes You Happy"). I love, love both of those!!

#279

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Posted May 5, 2011 @ 4:51 PM

After hearing James' version of "Without You", I was reminded of Kelly's rendition: http://www.youtube.c...h?v=sPvMUHZt--Y

#280

Cookie Maharg

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Posted May 12, 2011 @ 4:57 PM

"I Who Have Nothing" Haley Reinhart and Jordin Sparks. With all due respect to Adam's "Mad World", Kelly's "Stuff Like That There", Carrie's "Alone", and Bo's "In a Dream", Jordin Spark's rendition of "I Who Have Nothing" is, in my opinion, the very best American Idol performance of all time. Last week there was some talk from the judges about being emotionally, if not vocally perfect. Jordin was both emotionally and vocally perfect on this song, while Haley had a good vocal, but missed the mark emotionally. Allow me to elaborate. This is a song about a person on the lower edge of society who longs for someone far above their social strata. This is not a person with a lot of self confidence, the very title of the song tells you that. Jordin, dressed in a simple black dress, approaches the microphone tentatively, eyes downcast, and begins singing with a fragile, "I, I who have nothing", then her singing gathers in strength as the emotions well up inside her, and then she hits that big note DEAD SOLID PERFECT. In the second verse she returns to the persona of the humble outsider, until again the longing overcomes her, and she hits that big note DEAD SOLID PERFECT. Then she sings, "She can take you anyplace she wants, to fancy clubs and restaurants", driving through it, the anger and frustration palpable on her face and in her voice, til she reaches, "where I can only watch you with my nose pressed up against the window pane", holding that note unchanged while the instrumentation swells around it. Perfect. She concludes as quietly as she starts, once more casting her eyes downward as she finishes the song, knowing she is powerless to change her situation. I think I'm going to cry.

Haley on the other hand, comes out bristling with aggression, hair piled high and decked out in some high end hoochie wear (not complaining, she looked hot), and, despite her histrionics, conveyed little of the hurt and defeat of someone who desperately wants something that will forever be beyond her grasp. Sang nice, though.

Edited by Cookie Maharg, May 12, 2011 @ 6:09 PM.


#281

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Posted May 12, 2011 @ 5:52 PM

ITA that Jordin's was infinitely better than Haley's. Haley's was infinitely better than her first performance and I was so mesmerized by the little glowy waves of anger emanating from her that I was more impressed than I was the second time. On watch back it was shouty and flat to my ears. I don't agree that Jordin's was THE best Idol performance ever, but I would put it in the Top 10.

#282

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Posted May 15, 2011 @ 5:41 PM

Cookie Maharg, I almost cried just reading your recap of Jordin's best performance and the only AI song I've downloaded from iTunes. No way was Haley better. In fact, I agree, siddalee, I thought it was too shouty.

I'll also add that while I thought Lauren's version of "Trouble" was very good, I liked Elliott's better. IMO, both she and Carrie kind of lost some intensity during the fast part, which Elliott chose not to sing.

#283

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Posted May 17, 2011 @ 10:13 PM

While I am a fan of Jordin and definitely agree that her performance of IWHN was an AI moment, I think it should be noted that this performance took place back before Randy started trying to be Simon, and due to a lack of wits was failing miserably. So Jordin was pretty much getting the Lauren treatment most of that season, IIRC, and so she didn't have the angst that Haley no doubt had to deal with during her performance.

That said, if I had to compare IWHNs, I normally like a Jordin-type tone of voice and have been a fan of hers longer, so I'd have to lean slightly more in favor of her rendition. However, I must give great credit where it is due to Haley for her rendition. I thought it was very well done, and that she channeled her angst in a way that made that performance simmer. She's also been responsible for helping me to appreciate a more smoky tone of voice like hers. 

Long story short? I think both renditions are about equally as great in their own respective ways.

Edited by Make It So, May 17, 2011 @ 10:16 PM.


#284

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Posted May 19, 2011 @ 4:54 PM

I think the key was the difference in approach. While I prefer Jordin's version, she was playing it as a girl who wanted something she could never have, as described so eloquently above. Haley did what Gaga recommended and "got a little psycho," playing it more as a shouty stalker type going after a guy who doesn't have any interest in her.

#285

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Posted Mar 1, 2012 @ 11:48 PM

"One and Only" by Adele: I figured the show would have made a bigger production out of two girls singing the same song on the same night. Elise wins for me; I thought she had more of an emotional connection to the song than Jen.

"Reasons" by Earth, Wind & Fire: Neither Sway in S5 or DeAndre had much luck with it. I guess the Idol audience isn't here for the falsetto.

#286

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Posted Mar 2, 2012 @ 5:48 PM

Week 1 of S11:

"Think": Diana DeGarmo (S3), Katharine McPhee (S5), Siobhan Magnus (S9), Adam Brock (S11): It might be time to retire this one. Diana, Kat, and Siobhan were all pretty good. Adam made a really dumb choice by singing this, no way could he compare to the other three.

"Reasons": Jose 'Sway' Penala (S5), Deandre Brackensick (S11): Um, no. Neither.

"Never Can Say Goodbye": David Brown (S4), Jorge Nunez (S8), Aaron Marcellus (S11): Uhh...I guess Aaron was the best, although that's not really saying much.

"True Colors": Haley Scarnato (S6), Anoop Desai (S8), Creighton Fraker (S11): NoopDawg! Creighton wasn't bad, and I suppose Haley wasn't terrible but probably the worst of the three.

"Angels": David Archuleta (S7), Heejun Han (S11): Archie by a mile.

"Dance With My Father": Scott Savol (S4), Jacob Lusk (S10), Jermaine Jones (S11): Definitely Jermaine, only because it wasn't a trainwreck.

"What About Love": Melissa McGhee (S5), Janell Wheeler (S9), Erika Van Pelt (S11): Melissa > Erika >>>>> Janell. I still love Melissa's studio version of this song.

"One And Only": Jen Hirsh (S11), Elise Testone (S11): It's been a long time since two contestants sang the same song on the same night. Elise was better, but I still liked Jen's. It's a shame she didn't make it.

"Sittin' On The Dock of the Bay": George Huff (S3), Brielle Von Hugel (S11): George Huff by default.

"Feeling Good": AJ Tabaldo (S6), Leslie Hunt (S6), Adam Lambert (S8), Katie Stevens (S9), Hallie Day (S11): Definitely retire this one. Just looking at its track record, it's obvious that America really don't care for jazz. I'd put Adam first, and the rest second.

"Amazed": Josh Gracin (S2), Matt Rogers (S3), Scotty McCreery (S10), Baylie Brown (S11): Err, none? Do I have to choose? I don't even know.

"Reflection": Ayla Brown (S5), Jordin Sparks (S6), Jasmine Murray (S8), Hollie Cavanagh (S11): This is another song I wouldn't mind never hearing again on Idol. I thought Hollie did the best, followed by Ayla, Jordin, and Jasmine.

So I'm sure next week's theme means the repeat factor will be off the charts.

Edited by pk124, Mar 2, 2012 @ 5:53 PM.


#287

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Posted Mar 2, 2012 @ 11:06 PM

Yay! One of my favorite threads and pk124 is still here to do the heavy lifting! THANKS!

You and I usually disagree on at least a couple but this time I'll go with you pretty much right down the line with the exception of "Reflection" - I loved Ayla's version and would put it first.

My jury is still out overall on Jermaine but however annoying Richie Law may have been, his and Jermaine's duet was possibly my favorite *vocal* performance so far this season and he accomplished something Wednesday night I didn't think possible - he made me not hate this song. He may turn out to be a keeper after all.

#288

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Posted Mar 24, 2012 @ 5:33 PM

New Idol app lets you compare performances really easily. Pretty rad: http://www.fanaticly.../american-idol/

For S11 Week 4, looks like Billy Joel hasn't been a theme week since Season 2 (9 years!... too long). Here are the repeats:

New York State of Mind -- Kimberley Locke (S2), Erika Van Pelt (S11). Toss-up for me, though Kimberley did survive to Top 3 after signing it, and EVP... did not.
Piano Man -- Josh Gracin (S2), Colton Dixon (S11). Colton FTW.
The Longest Time -- Top 7 Group (S2), Top 10 Group (S11). Meh, edge to S11.

And other Billy Joel repeats for good measure, and because I <3 Billy Joel:

Tell Her About It -- Clay Aiken (S2), Matt Giraud & Scott MacIntyre (S8), as guests on S9. Matt/Scott interlocking piano duet was cool.
And So It Goes -- Carmen Rasmusen (S2), David Archuleta (S7). Archie, obvy.
Just the Way You Are -- Ruben Studdard (S2), Scott MacIntyre (S8). Giving this one to Ruuuben.

Next week... Personal Idols (which, fyi, made its theme debut last year in S10 Week 2).

Edited by elfymale, Apr 1, 2012 @ 12:14 AM.


#289

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Posted Mar 30, 2012 @ 8:58 AM

I thought Adam Lambert did way better with Whole Lotta Love than Elise did. She sang it well enough but I don't think the song suited her voice at all. It was just such a weird song choice for me that I just couldn't find myself fully liking it.

#290

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Posted Mar 31, 2012 @ 2:46 AM

Aaand here are the repeats from Personal Idols (Week 5):

Gunpowder & Lead (Miranda Lambert) -- Skylar (S11) vs. Haley & Lauren duet (S10). Skylar rocked pretty hard.
Landslide (Fleetwood Mac) -- Colton, Elise, Phillip (S11) vs. Lacey Brown (S9). Trio wins, hands down.
Edge of Seventeen (Stevie Nicks) -- Colton, Elise, Phillip (S11) vs. Nikki McKibbin (S1). Trio again.
Don't Stop (Fleetwood Mac) -- Colton, Elise, Phillip (S11) vs. Casey James (S9) vs. Finale Group (S5). I really liked this trio, if that wasn't obvy.
A Song for You (Donny Hathaway) -- Heejun (S11) vs. Ricky Braddy (S8) vs. Elliott Yamin (S5) vs. Chip Days (S2). Fan of Heejun, but gotta give this one to Elliott.
Jesus, Take the Wheel (Carrie Underwood) -- Hollie (S11) vs. Danny Gokey (S8) vs. LaKisha Jones (S6). Cop-out to choose Carrie? I choose Carrie.
Rock With You (MJ) -- DeAndre, Heejun, Joshua (S11) vs. Top 13 Group (S10), Stephen Fowler (S8), Brandon Rogers (S6), Chip Days (S2). Can't say I really remember other seasons, so trio by default.
P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing) (MJ) -- DeAndre, Heejun, Joshua (S11) vs. Danny Gokey (S8) vs. Justin Guarini (S1). Can't get the vision of Guarini out of my head on this one.
Without You (Mariah Carey) -- Joshua (S11) vs. Carly Smithson (S7) vs. Kelly Clarkson (S1). Joshua killed it, but can't go against the Original Idol. Kelly FTW.
Whole Lotta Love (Led Zeppelin) -- Elise (S11) vs. Adam Lambert (S8). Tie, both rocked the house.

One of the best weeks of Idol ever, maybe. Next week: 80's! I hope someone wears a Hypercolor. With a scrunchie.

Edited by elfymale, Mar 31, 2012 @ 2:47 AM.


#291

Travid

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Posted May 12, 2012 @ 3:50 PM

Best "Without you" ever is by Clay Aiken. http://youtu.be/UO9QIGFZ6zg

#292

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Posted Mar 21, 2013 @ 6:28 PM

The crowd went nuts for Candice Glover's "Come Together," and I cannot say anything against the singing, but I preferred Crystal Bowersox's in S9. Hers had more personality and quirk, and I liked her arrangement more, didgeridoo and all. Candice did it as a straight-ahead rocker, powering her way through.

While I'm at it, I liked Katie Stevens's "Let It Be" more than Burnell Taylor's. That was her best AI performance; his sounded thin and whiny on top, and I might have guessed he was new to the song.