Tuesday, July 17, 2007

American Idol - My experience

I recently purchased Elliot Yamin's CD. He was the "regular" looking guy on American Idol two seasons ago. His voice was always the bomb to me, so as I was perusing the aisles of Target one day last week, I picked it up. His ballads are amazing, especially the remake of Donny Hathaway's A Song For You.

It reminded me of when I tried out for Idol. In 2004, at the Superdome in New Orleans, me and like 200,000 people waited in line for hours in the sweltering New Orleans heat. People were singing in line, some voices were amazing and surprising, like the tiny, white girl who looked to be about 16 years old who sounded like Chaka Khan or somebody. Then there was the guy we all nicknamed "Usher." He was cute, and he was kind of dressed like Usher with the whole big belt buckle and blazer look; when he sang a tear fell down my cheek. His voice was absolutely beautiful.

After I was assigned a number they said to be back at the superdome the next morning before 6am. Some people stayed the night in the superdome (I heard there wasn't a lot of sleeping going on because people kept singing all damn night), but I went back to my hotel watched the MTV VMA's and practiced in my room alone. My friend Jade came down to support me, too.

The scene was unreal the next day. Miniature pop stars were everywhere, and music filled the dome. Loud voices, soft voices, we even heard one dude who sounded exactly like Akon (which was weird). Section by section the auditioners were herded down to the field and assigned tents to audition. There were about 10 tents on the field which had 2-3 judges at each tent. And because like 5 sections went before mine, we pretty much knew which judges were letting people through and which judges were not. Of course I got the crappy tent number 5. They seemed to only be letting guys through. You could tell that maybe they had an agenda as far as what kind of show they wanted that season.

In rows of 4 we all inched up to the judges tent, then one by one we performed until they politely said, "Thank You." My song was a little something I wrote to the tune of Heatwave. It talked about how bad Ryan Seacrest's breath was...it was like a "Heatwave." My favorite line: "...could it be the devil in me or does his breath smell like some dog pee pee, it's like a HEATWAAAAVE!" I thought I was making my point, because even though the song was stupid, I sang it well.

After we finished, they asked all four members of my row to approach the table, and told us all that we weren't different enough for this season. And we left the field. My friend Jade told me to run off excitedly even if I didn't make it, so I did, that was pretty funny.

The experience was draining, emotionally and physically. I told myself I'd never do it again. It's not really a singing competition until you get to see Simon, Randy, and Paula, and even then it's always about something extra. Whatever they're looking for that season may or may not be you. That season, it wasn't me. What if it was though? My CD could be in Target right now. (...and then I woke up)

American Idol: something I can always say I tried.


mer said...

I wish you made it. We need an inside scoop on Paula. I need to know what drugs she's taking. That child is R.E.T.A.R.T.E.D

Ty said...

I think it's amazing that you tried out for the show! And hell, you don't need them mofos to make a CD! Tell you what? When you have a demo made, give it to me and I'll put it on the shelf at my Target next to a cup that says "Make Payment Here." :-)