Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Blogging Just to Blog

I'm going to try to post daily, like I did once before and then fizzled, in the hopes that I can overcome my blogging despair and maybe squeeze something entertaining or amusing out of my brain. I've still not got much going on in my life, but dag nabbit, I'm going to write anyway!

How about an American Idol rant? In a lot of ways, I think this is the best season of Idol yet. Admittedly, I didn't watch the first season, but I think I can safely say that any season featuring the likes of Justin Guarini, Nikki McKibben, and Ryan Starr isn't going to challenge this season on any quality meters. The main reason I think this season is so much better is the diversity and integrity of the contestants, let alone that the overall quality of talent is higher. The final five all have very good voices, but they are all distinct from each other, and for the most part distinct from what's hot today. My personal favorites are Katharine "Beaver Shot" McPhee (BTW, Kat, thanks for that) and Elliott "Mr. Tumnus" Yamin. They are very talented singers who perform well, but not like record company clones. I think that they are kind of older-skewing, too, and that's probably why I like them, Grumpy-Old-Man-in-Training that I am. This isn't very rant-ish so far, but now I'll get to that part.

Chris "Poseur Extraordinaire" Daughtry. What the hell is this guy doing here? I'll admit that he has pipes, and that maybe he's easy on the eyes for some female viewers, but he irks me for a couple reasons. First of all, Chris, 1999 called and it wants its Whine Rock Sound back. Ed Kowalczyck from Live also called, and he's going to file a copyright suit against you for any money you earn from this Idol thing. Seriously, this guy heard Staind's "Break the Cycle" and, after he put away the lotion and cleaned himself up with some tissue, decided to mimic it and form a band. If you need any proof of his uber-derivativeness, see his "interpretations" of Fuel, RHCP, and Live's version of "Walk the Line" from this season. I'm fine with that, but Buddy, if you didn't get on the train along with Lifehouse, The Calling, Nickelback, Default, and the rest of 'em, it ain't gonna happen. Using American Idol as your Plan B is ill-advised to say the least.

Secondly, you get no cred in the "rock" world without a band. Unless you write the songs and play almost all the instruments (a la Lenny Kravitz [whom I despise, btw]), you're going nowhere. There's a big difference between a solo artist performing with hired guns and a singer in an organic band, and rock fans will totally reject the former. Thirdly, you do realize what's in store for you if you win, right? A prison sentence. You'll be signed to a contract to record an album that will have no trace of your own influence save for your warbly, overdone vibrato. IF you ever get to record on your own terms, it won't be until after several years and at least two albums that will paint you as something THEY want you to be, and not as you would like to be. Look at Kelly Clarkson. By all accounts she's an Idol success story, but it's highly suspect that she is now, 4 years later, making the music she truly wants to.

And fourthly, I just can't abide such an obvious copycat succeeding. Last year it was fun to call Constantine and Bo "rockers" with a wink and your fingers crossed. They were harmless and never really approached my musical "turf". Chris is the first true rock Idol contestant, and his unoriginality is all that more evident to me, a rock fan. If Chris becomes an ambassador of rock and starts a movement away from the popularity of Hip Hop, R&B, Rap, and manufactured Pop, I will be embarrassed to have him be the standard-bearer. Dave Grohl would have to step in and kick his ass.

I heard rumors early on that Fuel actually contacted Chris to take over lead singing duties for their band, but that his commitment to Idol prevents that from happening. I hope for his sake that he gets the boot from Idol and joins Fuel, playing minor league hockey arenas and state fairs for several years to come so that he can support his family. That would be the best possible outcome for him and the rest of rockdom.

iPod: "Ornamental" and "Pipsqueak" by Braid, "Saints and Sailors" by Dashboard Confessional, "Ephemera" by This Is Me Smiling, "What Did You Say?... I'm Sorry, My Eyes Are Burning" by .Moneen., "Table for Glasses" by Jimmy Eat World, "Quit" by Hey Mercedes, "Ten" and "Pain" by Jimmy Eat World, "Secret Santa Cruz" by The City on Film, "The Start to This May Be the End to Another" by .Moneen., "Eleven to Your Seven" and "Every Turn" by Hey Mercedes, and "Anderson Mesa" by Jimmy Eat World.