Archive for the ‘Kara DioGuardi’ Category

Channel Flippin’ – It’s Showtime

January 12, 2009

America’s number-one TV show is back.

By Blake

Originally posted January 11, 2009.

I am so excited!

The time is almost here for the season premiere of my (and America’s) favorite TV show, American Idol! This Tuesday, January 13, 2008, will mark the first episode of the landmark show’s eighth season, and there’s certainly plenty to be pumped up about. The show’s even launched a new website look to celebrate the arrival of its eighth year on the air. Also, I’ve been getting into the American Idol spirit by posting some American Idol-related articles into the BlakeOnline archives. I’ve been having to re-post all the past articles when I changed to the current format of the web site and most of the previous BlakeOnline articles have yet to be posted here, so I’d thought it would be an appropriate time to re-post the American Idol articles. So, now you can check out the Disney’s Hollywood Studios changes article (which mentions The American Idol Experience, an upcoming attraction there), a recap of the American Idol season 7 finale, and a report from the American Idol season 7 concert.

First off, there’s a new judge to spice opinions up with Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, and Simon Cowell. Songwriter Kara DioGuardi will join the three famous judges to give the show a little more variation and to add some publicity to the program. It will be fascinating to see what she brings to the show and how she and the other three judges will manage to squeeze in all of their comments into the already-short amount of time given to critique the contestants’ performances.

Not only will a new judge liven things up on this season of American Idol, but the contestants will have a lot to bring to the table when it comes to talent. Last season’s amazing group of performers managed to make season 7 the most memorable (in my opinion) year of the show yet. David Cook, Michael Johns, and Carly Smithson rocked the place out every week; David Archuleta’s voice had the younger and older viewers voting for him weekly; Syesha Mercado and Chikezie Eze added some soul to the show; Jason Castro’s relaxed songs were excellent; Brooke White had sensationally simple songs and a sincere personality; Kristy Lee Cook was the country performer of the bunch; and Ramiele Malubay brought some pop songs to the group. Between the ten of them, there was really something great for everyone.

Additionally, not only did last year’s top ten contestants show they had talent while they were on the show, but they’ve also continued to please audiences outside of the show. All of them toured the country last summer in an outstanding show-stopping concert and some of them have already started their careers as record artists.

Chikezie Eze supposedly has a new album in the works, though I wasn’t able to find much information about it or whether it’s really happening or not.

Ramiele Malubay has released four singles, including a new Christmas song.

Michael Johns released a Christmas single in December and the proceeds of that song will go to the Red Cross and MDA’s Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis fund. Additionally, he helped score the music and also sings in most of the songs in the new documentary of Shaun White (a.k.a. the Olympics’ “Flying Tomato” snowboarder/skateboarder). Michael also has an upcoming album being released.

Kristy Lee Cook released an album in September, called “Why Wait”, which featured her song that was on the country Top 30 Billboard, “15 Minutes of Shame.”

Carly Smithson has been working on music, as well, and will have an upcoming album.

Brooke White has become a spokesperson for the foundation that is partnered between Malaria No More and American Idol Gives Back called Save the World Summer. She has also been writing music updating her blog frequently with posts and videos.

Jason Castro recorded “Hallelujah”, which was (in my opinion) his most memorable song while on American Idol, which is going to be featured in an upcoming Mexican film Amar a Morir. In addition to that, Castro has been updating his video blog frequently with new videos and news. Castro also released a free single of “White Christmas” and is currently working on an album.

Syesha Mercado released a single with Boney James during her American Idol journey and is now working on an album.

David Archuleta released a self-titled CD in November, which peaked at #2 on the Billboard charts. The album featured several songs that were written and co-written by Archuleta and also included Archuleta’s single “Crush,” which was released in August, as well as the new single “A Little Too Not Over You.” Official music videos have been made for both singles. Consistently updating his blog, David has kept his fans up to speed about his post-American Idol experiences. Additionally, in September David Archuleta taped an episode of the Nickelodeon show iCarly, which is set to air sometime in the spring.

Finally, David Cook has had success with the winning song from the American Idol songwriting competition “The Time of My Life” (written by Regie Hamm) and his single from September, “Light On” (of which a music video has been made). Both were featured on his excellent new self-titled album which was released in November. All but three of the songs on his CD were written or co-written by him. Cook plans to have a concert tour at colleges throughout the country beginning in February.

And that’s all of last year’s top ten. It’ll be tough to top that outstanding roster of performers and their varied music and personalities. I’ll definitely expect to be “wowed” this season, but I’ll hold off on any huge expectations for now.

One thing is for sure – with all the anticipation rising, as well as the introduction of the fourth judge, Kara DioGuardi, and the new show website, I can’t stand the short wait we have until the season premiere of American Idol! It will premiere on Fox this Tuesday, January 13, 2008 at 8:00pm Eastern time, 7:00pm Central time and will continue every Tuesday and Wednesday through May. 🙂

By Blake; originally posted January 11, 2009. All images (C) Fox.
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Channel Flippin’ – ‘American Idol’ Jumps the Shark

August 30, 2008

The nation’s favorite reality competition may have seriously just “jumped the shark.” A fourth judge will be added to the panel of American Idol when the series debuts its eighth season this January.

By Blake

Originally posted August 30, 2008.

In its heyday, Happy Days was a television craze that had countless viewers tuning in during each sensational episode. Though, in one fateful move, the show’s pretty-boy Fonzie water-skied over a shark. Fans claim that after Fonzie “jumped the shark,” Happy Days began to lose steam and had seldom decent episodes thereafter. And so, since then, the coined term “jump the shark” has referred to when a television series makes a risky move for the worst that possibly ruins its popularity and destroys its reputation for future episodes. With Andy Griffith, it was when Barney Fife left and the show began to air in color. In Scooby-Doo, it was when the tiny Scrappy-Doo began to tag along with Mystery, Inc. on their adventures. Other shows jump it all when they begin spinoffs or movies.

But when thinking of these legendary television series that made a mistake that messed them up eternally, the one show that doesn’t come to mind is American Idol. Sure, some individual seasons may have been better or worse than others, but as an actual television series, the show has done quite well without making any significant changes in its layout. But an announcement that was made last Monday, August 25, 2008, made me think that American Idol’s luck may just about be up. This January when American Idol returns to Fox for its eighth season premiere, a fourth judge will sit alongside Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, and Simon Cowell as they review contestants’ performances. If that doesn’t spell out “shark jumpage ahead,” then I don’t know what does.

The fourth judge, Kara DioGuardi, is a songwriter and producer that has collaborated with quite an impressive roster of performers, including Christina Aguilera, Jewel, Miley Cyrus, the Jonas Brothers, Carrie Underwood, Gwen Stefani, and even newcomers (and American Idol contestants) David Cook and David Archuleta (both on their upcoming albums). And that’s just to mention a few. So, needless to say, with that many extremely popular singers that she’s worked with, and with her several Grammy nominations to boot, DioGuardi could prove to be a very positive, honest, tell-it-like-it-is asset to American Idol’s judging panel.

So, why does DioGuardi’s involvement with the show have me worried about American Idol “jumping the shark?” Well, it’s not so much about DioGuardi herself. It’s that I just don’t want anything to change too much! American Idol is my very favorite show and I certainly do not want it to be altered.

With certainly no offense to Kara DioGuardi, I don’t really think American Idol currently needs a new judge. It’s great as it is and all three other judges have well chemistry when reviewing together. Additionally, the judge’s comments seemed rushed enough when it was just the three of them . . . who knows how frazzled it will get when they has even less time than they do already to state her opinions.

To be brief, I don’t think Kara DioGuardi herself will be a major problem for American Idol. She won’t be the cause of it “jumping the shark.” Hopefully she’ll fit right in with Randy, Paula, and Simon and be a welcoming new addition to American Idol. But what might cause the show to jump it is if her presence results in subsequent conflicts with the show’s content or current judges.

By Blake; originally posted August 30, 2008. All images (C) Fox.