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March 31, 2010 at 7:31 AM

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'American Idol' Top 10 is Timmy's World, and the rest of them are just living in it.

Posted by Todd Mossburg

Urban Top 10.jpgIt was engaging, exquisite, breathtaking and captivating. Tim "Play-in Contestant" Urban blew me away with "Sweet Love" by Anita Baker.

OMG, the best performance in "American Idol" history if you ask me. Urban has now become the singer to beat here in Season 9. I cannot believe how he transformed into a star right before our eyes. Touching, moving, current and believable.

No, this is not some elaborate day-before-April-Fool's-Day joke but instead a very tactical diversion technique. You see, most people will read a headline and the first two paragraphs to get the gist of a story or blog. My hope is that those dweebs have stopped reading by now and leave thinking that Urban should no longer be the focus of destroying the AI competition by voting for the worst performer.

Maybe if enough AI experts, entertainment writers and lowly bloggers like me write; "he's great" each week, then the conspirators at VFTW.com will move their target onto someone else.

"To kill, you must know your enemy, and in this case my enemy is a varmint known as VoteForTheWorst.com. And a varmint like that will never quit - ever. They're like the Viet Cong - Varmint dot com Cong. So you have to fall back on superior intelligence and superior firepower. And that's all she wrote."

Urban is not Teflon Tim, or an "American Idol"urban cockroach, he is a Peep. Yep, you heard me, a Peep. Those damn florescent marshmallows that come back every Easter.

IMG_0181.JPG
An American pastime for 50-plus years and counting. I hate them. Bright colored sugared fluffy marshmallows that rot our mouths like Urban is rotting our ears. Why do they also never seem to go away? Year after year.

I sometimes see them go uneaten in my kids' Easter baskets only to pop back up a year later looking the same way and still as stale as Urban's Mickey Mouse routine on the AI stage.


When will Tiny Tim be kicked off the "adorable" Love Boat? I know you feel me dawg, midway through his performance I could swear he was singing....

Love, exciting and new
Come aboard. We're expecting you.
Love, life's sweetest reward.
Let if flow, it floats back to you.


Come aboard and watch Tim again at 1:47 and listen for it. I gave you the exact spot to the second so you don't have to listen to it all.

Simon Cowell's quote made me laugh out loud and very loudly. "It doesn't matter, your gonna smile, the audience is gonna vote for you, nobody cares, and you'll be here next week. So well done."

BTW, if Urban manages to become the next AI, then I will be taking my 100 hours of viewership and moving them to old episodes of Temptation Island, The Littlest Groom, and Armed & Famous on YouTube. I don't think FOX will give a flying fudge since I'm out of their demographic come May anyway.

OK, now that I've gotten this out of my system (actually I think a Peep is known to stay in your system for five days) let's move on to the rest of the performances from last night.

Magnus Top 10.jpg

Siobhan "Screaming Ally Sheedy" Magnus:
"Through The Fire" by Chaka Khan

I too am utterly (yeah, I used the word) bored with the screaming at the end of her songs. It's as if she builds the whole performance around it and honey that moment is gone. You nailed it weeks ago when you sang Aretha Franklin's "Think" but now you are suffering from Andrew Garcia-itis. In all honesty, I think she sang the song better as Clark Kent in her mentorship appearance with Usher.

IMG_0178.JPGBTW, I'm a little perturbed that FOX didn't give us a head-to-toe picture so I had to resort to my own iPhone photography skills and show off those kicks. Yowza!!! They looked like a cross between a ski and boxing boot. If I can get ever get up the nerve (or drink enough) to dress up as a girl next Halloween then I am gonna have to go as Siobhan. I need to ask my best friend Ronny Brasi how he does it so effortlessly and confidently year after year.

James Top 10.jpg

Casey "Take Off Your Clothes" James:
"Hold On I'm Coming" by Sam & Dave

He belted out some strong notes near the end of the song.

I had a vision and it wasn't the JNC talking to me. I think Casey will someday be the mayor of Cool, Texas. The dude smiles like he's on the back of a Rose Parade float. He is ALWAYS smiling at me. I am now officially scared of clowns and Casey.

Smile count = 13
Longest consecutive single smile while singing in seconds = 25


Lynche Top 10.jpg

Michael "The Big Hurt" Lynche:
"Ready For Love" by India Arie

This is the side of Mike I like. He toned down his playing to the camera schtick. He got it all out of his system in his tease before his segment began. He took a huge risk with a dark song sung by a female artist and it paid off big time. Overall, I really enjoyed his performance especially sitting out in the audience behind the judges. Check out the photo Michael Becker captured (right) in this setting. Really shows how cool it was.

I'd like to take a moment and remind Idol Confessions fans about my "deaf" prediction before we ever heard him sing a note. Back then he was just contestant #76089 that I saw run out of the room with a golden ticket.


Benami Top 10.jpg

Didi "No Nicknamey" Benami:
"What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted" by Jimmy Ruffin

Worst arrangement this season on AI. It felt like I was watching a Broadway version of the song sung by cartoon character Jessica Rabbit from "Who Framed Roger Rabbit." There I go again dating myself. When Didi plays back the tape from last night, she should not only listen but look at her makeup. Who was the artist working your chair in the FOX makeup stalls? My goodness. I will say this however, Jessica Rabbit is on my Top 5 cartoon outs list. A discussion and blog for another day.

Andrew Top 10.jpg

Andrew "Gokey" Garcia:
"Forever" by Chris Brown

I know I have absolutely no right to say this, because I spend most of my days these days with bed head, but YO DUDE DAWG, you can't get up on the AI stage with bed head. It distracted me. I normally watch a performance between 4-6 times before finishing this blog, but I had to add one more viewing because of the distract-o-do. Once I got past this, it was good to hear Garcia come alive again. He needs another one, a notch better than this week to get back in the race.


Katie Top 10.jpg

Katie "H.S.M.: The Original" Stevens:
"Chain Of Fools" by Aretha Franklin

Don't want to sound like Kara DioGuardi here but Stevens is too young to try to pull this song off. I am not saying she needs to sing only songs recorded after 1994 but she should have gone with something a little bit in the now and not as big vocally as an Aretha song.


DeWyze Top 10.jpg

Lee "Counting Hootie & Blowfish Crows" DeWyze:
"Treat Her Like A Lady" by The Temptations

Simon nailed it, I too believe tonight Lee finally broke through. He is getting closer to nudging Magnus out of the Top 3 especially if he does that again real soon.


2Crystal Album Cover look.jpg

Crystal "Jewel" Bowersox:
"Midnight Train To Georgia"
by Gladys Night

She did it, she put down her signature acoustic guitar to sit behind the Yamaha grand and tickle the ivories. Wow, Usher was rock solid with his advice that he gave throughout the show. It was most evident when he told Crystal that she needed to make the piano playing secondary because he saw how raw she was. As it turns out, her focus on playing the song correctly was distracting to me, and held her back from really having an intimate chill-giving moment. Saying all that, I loved it, I love her. She is my "American Idol" no matter what happens from this day forward. Bravo Bowersox, bravo!!

If you missed it, or are like me, and can watch it again, her performance begins @ 1:09.

Kelly Top 10.jpg

Aaron "H.S.M. 3: Senior Year" Kelly:
"Ain't Know Sunshine" by Bill Withers

All I saw and heard was nerves. I sat there waiting for his "Well I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know..." moment and it didn't live up to the preview. I rewound the DVR to Usher doing it so I could get my fix.

The Mossy Index

1 - 10 Scale SM CJ ML DB TU AG KS LD CB AK
Song Choice 7 8 9 6 10 8 6 8 7 9
Execution 6 9 10 4 10 8 7 10 8 6
Appearance / Presence 7 8 10 4 10 7 7 9 8 6
Voice 6 8 9 4 10 8 8 9 9 6
"IT" Factor 7 9 9 3 10 6 5 8 10 3
Overall Score /
+ or - from last week
33
(-3)
42
(+6)
47
(+10)
21
(-4)
*50
(+38)
37
(+20)
33
(0)
44
(+12)
42
(-1)
30
(-3)


* I am hoping the geeks at VFTW.com are just skimming this blog and see Urban scored a perfect 50 on The Mossy Index. More false front to get them focusing on someone else. Actual scores are 6,5,3,4,1 = 19 (+7).

2Top 10 .jpgWait? No one said there would be math involved:

The Mossy Index total points for the singers after five weeks of LIVE performances...

1 Crystal 269
2 Michael 237 (up from 3)
3 Casey 231 (up from 4)
4 Siobhan 225 (down from 2)

5 Lee 208
6 Andrew 195 (up from 7)
7 Aaron 181 (up from 8)
8 Didi 180 (down from 6)
9 Katie 177

10t Tim 126 (up from 12)
10t Paige 126 (voted off, performed 1 time less than Tim)
12 Lacey 120 (voted off, performed 2 times less than Tim/Paige)

13 Lilly 103 (voted off, performed 3 times less than Tim/2 less than Paige)
14 Todrick 100 (voted off, performed 3 times less than Tim/2 less than Paige)

Someone usher this Idol hopeful to the door:

Sorry Didi Benami fans, I think the Urban craze will last one more week which means Didi will unfortunately be the latest to leave. I want her to stay, but she's really lost some confidence since Lacey Brown went home. It should be her last night.

Momma don't let your babies grow up to be Cowell's...

Mom called in her takes on last night and was really jazzed about some of the performances. Not making her top three below was the positive strides she saw from Andrew Garcia. She's been an AG playa hayta for a while.

In order of her most memorable are:

1. Bowersox - "Loved her looks from behind the piano to her makeover."
2. James - "Where's my Casey James Cougar t-shirt?"
3. DeWyze - "He finally let loose tonight. Boy he really hit it out tonight."

Mom's spaghetti and meatball dinner invitation goes out to Tim Urban. Mom apparently fed the staff over at VFTW.com and gave them some food poison to disrupt their campaign this week.

As for your next AI in mom's eyes, "Crystal continues to pull far away from her competition."

Count Von Count "AH AH AH AH AH!"

"Pitchy" counter = 1

"Adorable" counter = 3

"I love you/Loved it/Love" counter = 12

"Boo/Hiss Simon" counter = 5

"So listen" counter = 8
Used to start off critiques on six singers. Maybe the producers should give the Voice Of God (term used in TV for the big announcer voice) $10K more to give a "so listen" that plays after each performance and is the cue for Randy to begin his Dawg/Dude/Man/Yo's.

"Dawg/Dude/Man/Yo" counter = 28 (an off night for the Dawg, averaging just 2.8 per singer)

Ryan's "let's irritate wonder blogger boy Todd and see if he can count all my Yo's" counter = 10 (before Andrew Garcia)

"Ryan vs Simon zingers" counter = 4

"Utter rubbish/Utterly pointless/Utterly" counter = 1

"Simon flipping us off" counter = 0 (but I will lean on my spotter Ethan R from Seattle who caught one last week that I missed)

In Closing:

• I'm sure it's been done before on one of the million billion episodes of AI, so forgive me for saying this; I got a kick out of the backstage intro to last night's show (minus the "kiss her" bit), when Ryan Seacrest took us to a forbidden area for us viewers, and then onto the stage just like the contestants see it upon entering. I said all this and I worked in TV. I guess I either miss it a great deal, or there was some sort of cool factor in it. Add to that, the candid shots backstage throughout the show were a nice addition.

• Did Simon forget it was R&B week when he was critiquing Casey's performance? He praised him for "taking on an R&B song." Umm, they had no choice.

• If you are a fan of the use of music in some of today's most popular drama shows on TV like Grey's Anatomy and The O.C., make sure you give Parenthood a try on NBC at 10 p.m. following AI on Tuesdays. I was drawn to the show for its content as a daddy of two, but am also captivated by the music used on the show. Their website does a great job posting the music used on the show so iTunes junkies like me can quickly download them.

• My mind is channel surfing right now cause I'm curious if I'm the only loser hooked on The Celebrity Apprentice, umm again! Have you seen the cast? Musical bombshells like Bret Michaels, Cyndi Lauper and Sharon Osbourne (Mr. Ozzy Osbourne since she bites the heads off of bats in that fam). Dynamic, delicious and dumb. My kind of reality television.

SgtPepper5.jpg• A friend (thanks HB) sent me one of my all-time favorite childhood movies Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band last weekend. The movie, unbeknownst to me as a child, garnered much negative criticism. I watched it again and still love it despite all the cheese. I suggest all music fans to let down your guard and give it a watch sometime. It's no Across The Universe but it's still a fun time. In fact, I think it's time that someone should remake it just as cheesy today and freshen' it up. Heck, I'm still jobless, so if there's a producer out there willing, I'm ready to make my cinema directorial debut. :)

Here are some suggestions on who should play whom. Special thanks to casting director HB as well.


  • Billy Shears - Gavin Rossdale (Peter Frampton)

  • Mark Henderson - Chris Martin (Barry Gibb)

  • Dave Henderson - Jonny Buckland (Robin Gibb)

  • Bob Henderson - Will Champion (Maurice Gibb)

  • Henry Henderson - Guy Berryman (no one previous)

  • Mr. Mustard - Bruce Willis in a really bad toupee (Frankie Howerd)

  • Dougie Shears - Eminem (Paul Nicholas)

  • B.D. Hoffler - Simon Cowell (Donald Pleasence)

  • Strawberry Fields - Carrie Underwood (Sandy Farina)

  • Lucy - Beyonce (Dianne Steinberg)

  • Dr. Maxwell Edison - Dane Cook (Steve Martin)

  • Future Villain Band (FVB) - Jonas Brothers (Aerosmith)

  • Earth Wind & Fire - Earth Wind & Fire (Themselves)

  • Marvin Sunk (The Sun King) - Gene Simmons (Alice Cooper)

  • Sergeant Pepper - Paul McCartney (Billy Preston)

  • The Diamonds - Destiny's Child (Stargard)

  • Mr. Kite - Steve Martin (George Burns)

  • The Brute - Dwayne Johnson (Carel Struycken)

• I know it's bad to drunk dial, or text, but what about drunk blogging? I might have been playing the "Dawg/Dude/Yo/Man" drinking game last night. Please don't email my boss "Theater of Payne" if you don't approve of my poor behavior.

Mossy Bonus Track:

IMG_0183.JPGAn Idol confession: it's date night tonight for this dad and his oldest daughter. You know her as 9-year-old guest mentor AI blogger last week. We are going to see The Last Song which opens today. Maddy is very excited to see Miley Cyrus on the big screen. I think I'm going to sneak in about two dozen Tim Urban Peeps in case this movie puts me to sleep.

Hmmm.... should I start printing t-shirts????

Until next time, find your inner Peep and let your boogie out. Later days.

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