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American Idol faces an avalanche of awful in Aspen, Colorado

Magic Cyclops brought the crazy to his American Idol audition in Colorado.
Michael Becker/Fox

American Idol


For Idol’s fourth round of auditions, they decided to head to the mountainous area surrounding Aspen, CO. This was a different place for the show to visit – so would they find a different caliber of talent?

Jenni Schick is a kindergarten-through-sixth-grade music teacher with an annoying amount of energy. She sang Pat Bennetar’s classically difficult “Heartbreaker,” yelling melodically through it. Whether or not she can hold a note for more than two seconds remains to be seen, but she still earned a kiss from Steven Tyler (don’t worry – she and her boyfriend have an agreement, and Steven’s on the okay-to-kiss list) and a ticket to Hollywood.

Curtis Gray has been singing in his church with his grandmother for his entire life. I wish he’d stick to church singing – his voice was a twinge too nasally, enough to keep all of his notes consistently under pitch. Still, Hollywood? Check.

A quick montage: Richi Law, with a country baritone, sounds like a Scotty McCreery wannabe. Devan Jones has a beautiful, light tone to his voice. I definitely want to see more of him. Mathenee Treco gave an affected performance with typical R&B style vocals. All three got their ticket to ride to Hollywood.

Tealana Hedgespeth rolled into the auditions with big glasses and a fraternal twin sister. And a horrible voice. As she warbled tonelessly along, Jennifer leaned over and growled at Steven, “If you ask her for another song, I’m gonna kill you.” Though they let her singing go on for way too long considering how awful she was, no encore was needed to know that Tealana was headed home.

Haley Smith lives in a log cabin and loves nature. The opening notes of her rendition of “Tell Me Something Good” were a bit shockingly loud, but after the initial jump she gave me, the easy jazz of Haley’s voice kicked in. Randy was proud of Haley because she did “her own thing.” I have a feeling she’ll be one to watch.

Alanna Snare is a bartender who works at a place where they sell bull testes as a delicacy. This seems to be the only reason they featured her audition – the judges got to say “testes” more than they usually do (re: they got to say it period), and some footage of a mooing cow accented how awful Alanna’s singing is.

Shelby Tweten was recently diagnosed with bipolar disorder, but the hope of becoming an American Idol has kept her on her medication consistently. Shelby has a pleasant voice, smoky and somewhat strong, though it wobbled a bit when she went for higher notes. Jennifer absolutely adored the sound of her voice, “the raspiness.” Randy praised her for being “fearless as a singer.” She was good, but I didn’t get the amount of positive vibes that the judges did. Regardless, Shelby moves on.

After a montage of horror, Jairon (don’t forget the) Jackson performed an original song. Like many we’ve already seen this season, he has easy R&B flow, though he got a little screechy on his higher notes. “I think you got something special there,” Jennifer told him. Hollywood: check.

Angie Zeiderman “likes to make everything a performance,” just like her hero, Lady Gaga. She hopes to someday be best friends with her. Gaga better run for the hills if she sees this girl coming. Angie gave some weird, jumpy, exaggerated performance of “(When You’ve Got It) Flaunt It,” proving she must never watch the show – NO ONE SHOULD EVER SING SHOWTUNES! Randy was turned off just based on that decision. Jennifer, however, shot back, saying, “How many people could come in here and do what she just did? Not many!” I don’t know, J. Lo – I don’t think I want many people to do that. After a second song choice, the negative nellies (re: the male judges) changed their minds, though I certainly didn’t. Nothing about Angie’s audition was any form of good, but still, she got sent through. I hang my head in shame for the opinions of the Idol judges. Somewhere, Simon Cowell shut off his television in disgust.

The night ended with a horribly overdramatic audition from Magic Cyclops, a crazy claiming to be from Davenport, Iowa and speaking with a horrifically fake British accent. “No one talks to me cuz I’m frightening and I look homeless,” Magic informed the audience. Then he bellowed through two songs, the second at J. Lo’s request, and was sent back home. This audition was only really funny if you ignored any potential for it to be considered an authentic American Idol audition. No wonder the show has been veering away from showing these sorts of bizarre auditions so far this season: Magic proved to be no more than stale and annoying.

All together, 31 hopefuls moved on from Aspen. No surprise – no winners spotted. This episode seemed to drag on for hours longer than it actually lasted. Let’s hope that the pace of this season picks up fast. Otherwise, we’re going to be in for a couple of months that seem to never end.

Tomorrow night, Idol hits Texas.


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