Friday, February 27, 2009

Top 12 Male Show: A Hint of David Cook

Original Air Date: February 19, 2008
Theme: Music of the 60’s

David Cook’s debut in the first show of the seventh season of American Idol was not exactly encouraging for him personality-wise. He was kinda forgettable plain looking white dude that giddy fangirl wouldn't bother of taking a second look. He had this ridiculous emo hairstyle, his a bit overweight especially with that obvious double chin, his face looked pale and he was wearing these awful clothes that made him looked like he hadn’t bought anything for his wardrobe in years.

Prior to this first episode, during the Hollywood rounds, his rivals namely David Archuleta, Michael Johns and Jason Castro were considered as the early front runners, they had already built a solid fan base and were common beneficiaries of praises from Simon, Paula and Randy. As for David Cook, Simon said “no” to him during Hollywood audition because obviously he didn’t liked him that much but thanks for Paula and Randy, he had gotten his chance to perform in the top 24 show.

After his performance of a 60’s song Happy Together, David Cook tickled Randy emphasizing how a campy song turned out to become a rock edgy song. Randy was instantly interested on David’s style. Paula praised it but not as much as her exaggerated metaphors thrown to the so called front runners and Simon... well he thought it was almost believable which means he was not impressed yet. By the way, David hits the highest note among others when he sang it and I can’t believe they ignored it.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Top 10 Male Show: David the Smug

Original Air Date: February 26, 2008
Theme: Music of the 70’s

American Idol’s greatness made David Cook so overwhelmed and jittery on last week’s show. After all, the show’s massive success had been consequently contributing not only world class talents dominating the music pop culture in America for almost a decade now but also to the entire world. He had put that reality behind and picked himself up to focus more on the competition. Last week was his close call realizing he had to combat the other contestants whose half of them looked incredibly formidable.

In this week’s 70’s music theme he paved his way through some serious rock music of Free’s All Right Now, showing off his flawless skills in playing the guitar which he named AC (stands for Adam/Andrew Cook, his two brothers). His rock edgy vocals were so infectious he was rocking the house like a joint concert. He started playing with the cameras appearing confident by looking a bit conceited. His looks was better this time sporting a fit t-shirt, his hair is more appropriately styled to go with his rock persona and the facial hair looks sexy.

Randy declared him the authentic rocker from the guys. He probably pointed that out to the other contestant who posed himself as rocker e.g. long hair… but was an epic fail. However, Simon thought he didn’t have a lot of charisma based on his video declaring himself a word nerd. David though not intentional but clumsily replied to Simon, "Unfortunately I don't have to win you (Simon) over with my charisma; I got to win these people over.” With those words, David just appeared smug to the voting viewers and had lost a powerful ally Simon Cowell.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Top 8 Male Show: The Breakout Performance

Original Air Date: March 4, 2008
Theme: Music of the 80’s

The path to become an American Idol became more and more elusive for David Cook. He had to do something to make more people vote for him and also steal votes from the growing minions of adoring fans of cutie-pie David Archuleta, hunky Aussie accent but voice sucks Michael Johns, and dreadlock two range vocals Jason Castro. To make things worse, the show’s resident and influential critic Simon Cowell hated him, his personality at least but hoped not his talent.

There was chaos on stage setting up David Cook’s electric guitar on the studio preparing for his rendition of a sappy song called Hello from Lionel Ritchie. Randy thought that it’s going to be very cheesy and he was confused about the electric guitar. However, once again, people in the studio were left incredibly thrilled when David belted that song and turning it into a powerful rock ballad. His vocals were amazingly precise in hitting the high note adding pinnacle to a rockified pop song. Doing that risky move was a brave thing to do but pulling it off was very rewarding.

That performance meant that David Cook was put back on track in the competition. Generally piqued by him last week, Simon was not even slightly hesitant of telling him he loved it. He even commended David for being brave enough to do it and making it work. Randy and Paula had always been considering him as one of the contenders and now they truly trust him to perform excellently in the coming weeks. The people started watching him closely and were giving him more attention that he deserved.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Final 12: A Rocker with a Big Heart

Original Air Date: March 11, 2008
Theme: John Lennon and Paul McCartney

The contest was getting tougher after the male and female merged because the girls were also an astounding group especially power belter Carly Smithson and charismatic country girl Brooke White. Realizing who he is up against right that moment, he knew that he must have to bring it on starting there. It’s amusing how I found to see him so motivated to win since before idols… he was just bugged by his brother to go out and audition for the show. As what he had said earlier, he just wanted to know his competitive edge.

The thing about David that I notice when he is performing, since he had already three performances in the competition, is that he had a certain skills of changing up his songs and put a signature high note when belting it. It is evident in this Eleanor Rigby performance that it is the same pattern from his previous songs yet it’s still very unpredictable. I know… it’s crazy but that’s what makes him edgy.

The performance continued his string of praises from Simon, Paula and Randy. They love the performance and when I saw David after his song, he looks so happy. He was having a great moment in American Idol and he totally just started to enjoy himself. By the way, did you saw an orange wristband David was wearing? I haven't but I heard his been wearing it starting this episode. It was his way of showing support to Lindsey Rose, his 7-year old fan, who suffers leukemia and fighting for her life in the hospital. His is a rocker with a big heart and that’s what I admire him for.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Final 11: Enjoying the Ride

Original Air Date: March 18, 2008
Theme: The Beatles

Before American Idol, life for David Cook was a struggle to make both ends meet. He was a bartender in Tulsa Oklahoma a drink slinger in one of the bars in their town. He was regularly been playing with his band on that joint hoping to earn more and getting tips from costumers. Playing with his band was the source of his musical background and training, he was a good musician. In earlier post I had mentioned about his brother who was bugging him into auditioning for American Idol. David had also mentioned about watching Chris Daughtry, a former contestant of the show, as the one that motivated him to audition aside from his brother.

Tonight, David Cook showed to us why he is likeable. After a couple of weeks that passed, David finally brought out his natural personality that will soon be loved by the people who watched him every week. His performance tonight brings out his confidence in the stage. He showed us how he loves singing. He rocked the stage singing Day Tripper and he sang it giving the best vocals for everyone. What I like about him in this video is that he just went out there in the stage having fun and loving the audience who are cheering for him. Also, I like how he was fooling around with host Ryan Seacrest after the judges gave him their positive critique. David seems to be a fun guy to hangout with.

Unfortunately, Simon thought that tonight’s performance was not his best. But David learned to accept his criticism. He said that he will not take criticisms personally but instead he will thought about it and apply it in his next performance. He must have figured out already how this game should be played and thinking he was still behind David Archuleta and many other contestants. What he needed was a “blow them all out of the water” kinda performance.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Final 10: Blowing Them Out of the Water

Original Air Date: March 25, 2008
Theme: The Year They Were Born

David Cook wasn’t given enough recognition from the start of this season and I don’t understand why when he is obviously filled with talent. I was so confused and annoyed why the judges were giving praises for that stuck-up Michael Johns. I thought vocally, that lame and wannabe rocker was an absolute train wreck. His rock medley was embarrassing and he looked cocky from beginning till end.

OK, I just get that out from my system, obviously I hate Michael Johns. This leads me in saying that David Cook is a charmingly humble person. The way he expressed himself in his videos showed how intelligent, articulate and nice person he was. In this episode, he said he decided to become a rock artist from the time he was given his first guitar at the age of two. He looked so cute in his baby pictures by the way.

This is one of my most favorite episodes in season 7 because this is David’s first of his many big idol moments. Since day one, he had been struggling to grab the attention of the judges and the fans. But by the time he started singing Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean, everyone was blown away with his mind-boggling vocals. However, it’s the arrangement and his version of the song that blow all of them out of the water. He sang the song so different, it was slow, it was rock and it was amazingly brilliant. The audience was screaming and the judges got nothing else to say but remarkable. They pointed out that he might be the person who could win American Idol and they were right.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Final 9: Taking It's Toll

Original Air Date: April 1, 2008
Theme: Dolly Parton

The best thing about David Cook’s highly praised performance last week was he was gaining more self-confidence in coming in to the top 9. He knew how the game of popularity and talent should be played. He explained eloquently to Ryan about his effort on googling for obscure versions of the song that he had chosen or re-arranged it in order to make it original or current and would fit for his raspy rock vocals. So far, it worked for him. He is a very intelligent guy.

Now here’s the best thing for this episode, he showed up on the stage looking so stunning in his new haircut. The glam squad for David Cook was doing a great job in making him so attractive. The terrible emo hairstyle that hides his beauty was finally gone. He looked like a star and he strikingly resembled to actor Mark Whalberg, just a thought. Paula Abdul cannot help herself to notice. Again, after his haunting rendition of Dolly Parton’s classic ballad Little Sparrow which he sang using his original arrangement, the judges collectively praised his performance. Simon said he was impressed that he can make singing a song about a sparrow good.

Sadly without anyone’s knowledge, during the show he had been suffering from high blood pressure. He was experiencing heart palpitation and passed out before he can even go on the stage to sing. Still, he eventually decided to go through to his performance and was taken to the hospital for immediate medical care after. Reports were telling about the reason for his bad health condition was David Cook’s family problem. He was so much stressed out of thinking about his sick brother Adam who was suffering from cancer. This was David’s hardest moment in the competition so far.