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(Some Guy)   Harry Connick Jr. to American Idol contestants: You're doing it wrong   (nextavenue.org) divider line 113
    More: Obvious, Harry Connick Jr, American Idol, Idol, Great American Songbook, human beings, Americans, Idol contestants, contestants  
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6499 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 06 May 2013 at 6:44 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-05-06 01:46:25 AM  
And then they ignored him.

I don't know why real musicians ever give shows like that any of their time.

Good on him.
 
2013-05-06 02:03:59 AM  
FTFA: The point Connick tried to make, which Jackson didn't want to hear, was that the show's contestants didn't know these classic songs well enough to take liberties with their melodies and lyrics. In doing so, they were murdering the music.

He's absolutely right about this. On the other hand, the whole idea of this show is to see people murdering the music. The contestants on this show are attempting to take a huge shortcut to singing stardom, so why would he think that they would put any effort into researching the background of the songs they're singing?
 
2013-05-06 02:26:39 AM  
While his dad was a...questionable...district attorney (New Orleans, for appx. 193 years) that old man could throw down a piano and vocal. He's just as interesting to watch as his son. The whole family can cook a stage. While the Connicks' styles aren't always my cup of my tea, there's no denying the craftsmanship.

As for the Idol bit, if Connick Jr. ever deigned to offer me free artistic advice, I'd be thrilled. Would probably cry a little inside for how vicious it would be, but I'd be thankful for it nonetheless.
 
2013-05-06 02:33:33 AM  
I haven't watched Idol all season, and just happened to catch this episode. I know nothing about any of the remaining contestants.
And it was brilliant seeing Harry Connick tell these kids straight out that they have no idea what t they're doing. It's one of my biggest complaints about past contestants. They have absolutely no idea what songs mean. They memorize lyrics and notes, and try to outdo each other with never-ending runs.
SING THE DAMN SONG! You are not better than Lena or Etta.
 
2013-05-06 06:00:55 AM  
Melisma kills songs. The Star-Spangled Banner is NOT 8,000 notes. If you were to transcribe a typical modern power-diva's rendition of our national anthem, it would read like a Rachmaninoff concerto.
 
2013-05-06 07:11:26 AM  
I'd die of embarrassment if I let a soulless, watered-down Frank Sinatra whose albums are cookie-cutter crooner 101 dress me down like that.

Seriously, watch anything of his on YouTube. It has all the soul and spontaneity of a Disney animatronic exhibit.
 
2013-05-06 07:16:11 AM  

SockMonkeyHolocaust: I'd die of embarrassment if I let a soulless, watered-down Frank Sinatra whose albums are cookie-cutter crooner 101 dress me down like that.

Seriously, watch anything of his on YouTube. It has all the soul and spontaneity of a Disney animatronic exhibit.


Thank you for letting us all know that you don't know how to listen to music and that you have no idea what you're talking about.  You think that you do, but you don't, not really.  I appreciate the heads up!
 
2013-05-06 07:19:05 AM  
Yeah, kids, let Michael Buble Sr. there show you how you're supposed to lounge up the covers to grease money out of old people's wallets.


Human jukeboxes, the whole lot of'em; a god damn waste of supposed talent.
 
2013-05-06 07:19:17 AM  

dickfreckle: While his dad was a...questionable...district attorney (New Orleans, for appx. 193 years) that old man could throw down a piano and vocal. He's just as interesting to watch as his son. The whole family can cook a stage. While the Connicks' styles aren't always my cup of my tea, there's no denying the craftsmanship.

As for the Idol bit, if Connick Jr. ever deigned to offer me free artistic advice, I'd be thrilled. Would probably cry a little inside for how vicious it would be, but I'd be thankful for it nonetheless.


There's a great movie in there somewhere. New Orleans vampire attorneys who play music?
 
2013-05-06 07:26:19 AM  

SockMonkeyHolocaust: I'd die of embarrassment if I let a soulless, watered-down Frank Sinatra whose albums are cookie-cutter crooner 101 dress me down like that.

Seriously, watch anything of his on YouTube. It has all the soul and spontaneity of a Disney animatronic exhibit.


You shut your whore mouth! that man risked his life as a tail gunner in a B-17 in WWII!!! He's a HERO!!!!
 
2013-05-06 07:27:30 AM  
I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.
 
2013-05-06 07:31:34 AM  

bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.


Hmm... you've never watched it, yet you know that they're only talentless karaoke singers who don't sing original music.
 
2013-05-06 07:33:27 AM  
Hasn't that been going on since day 1? The horses have left the barn there. Idol--and the current pop music scene that Idol has spawned--is loaded with intellectually lazy sing-bots that serve themselves instead of serving the song. They eschew artistry and musicality in favor of one-upping their Billboard rivals with vocal gymnastics and fashion gimmicks.

But it sells so any well-meaning musician who wants to act like a mentor to this new generation is just wasting this or her precious time. I don't know why they even try anymore.
 
2013-05-06 07:35:36 AM  

karmachameleon: Thank you for letting us all know that you don't know how to listen to music and that you have no idea what you're talking about. You think that you do, but you don't, not really. I appreciate the heads up!


Are you his mom or a 14 year-old fangirl? Because that's the only reason why I'd imagine anyone would type those words in defense of a melted blob of wax hitting pitch-perfect covers of songs that sound vaguely familiar.

Don't worry. One day you'll discover HIM and Pink and the Sex Pistols and suddenly puberty will make sense.

log_jammin: You shut your whore mouth! that man risked his life as a tail gunner in a B-17 in WWII!!! He's a HERO!!!!


If calling someone who fought alongside Wil Smiff against the alien invasion of Earth a "pussy" is anti-patriotic then let me say the people on the Lusitania deserved to die.
 
2013-05-06 07:36:42 AM  

The Great EZE: But it sells so any well-meaning musician who wants to act like a mentor to this new generation is just wasting this or her precious time. I don't know why they even try anymore.


Get on TV, try to stay relevant. This message is on a constant drone in the minds of the "well-meaning" oldies acts telling the whippersnappers how the music bidniss used to be 20 years ago.
 
2013-05-06 07:37:15 AM  
Next up: Stephen Sondheim night. A composer who crafts tricky music without a single unconsidered element, and who is capable of coaching inexperienced singers brilliantly.

Sondheim, teaching a voice student "My Friends" from "Sweeney Todd":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DBCVaFqGJwg

Randy, after the performance: "Yo, I was bored. I mean, seriously. You're singing about friendship. You don't sound happy, man. You should have done that like Timberlake rocked out 'U N Me N No Body' at the VMAs. Not your best."
 
2013-05-06 07:40:16 AM  
I've never seen Idol, but my kid watches the Voice, and those people make me cringe at the way they oversing al most everything. Its nauseating, so yeah, I hear what he's saying.
 
2013-05-06 07:43:41 AM  
To Harry Connick, Jr:

mobilegeeks.de

Thank you for saying what everyone else has been thinking since this worthless waste of airtime started.

Sincerely,

The American Public
 
2013-05-06 07:52:21 AM  

log_jammin: SockMonkeyHolocaust: I'd die of embarrassment if I let a soulless, watered-down Frank Sinatra whose albums are cookie-cutter crooner 101 dress me down like that.

Seriously, watch anything of his on YouTube. It has all the soul and spontaneity of a Disney animatronic exhibit.

You shut your whore mouth! that man risked his life as a tail gunner in a B-17 in WWII!!! He's a HERO!!!!


Only to get his ass shot off by aliens while Will Smith screams at him a few years later...
 
2013-05-06 08:02:42 AM  

SockMonkeyHolocaust: karmachameleon: Thank you for letting us all know that you don't know how to listen to music and that you have no idea what you're talking about. You think that you do, but you don't, not really. I appreciate the heads up!

Are you his mom or a 14 year-old fangirl? Because that's the only reason why I'd imagine anyone would type those words in defense of a melted blob of wax hitting pitch-perfect covers of songs that sound vaguely familiar.

Don't worry. One day you'll discover HIM and Pink and the Sex Pistols and suddenly puberty will make sense.

log_jammin: You shut your whore mouth! that man risked his life as a tail gunner in a B-17 in WWII!!! He's a HERO!!!!

If calling someone who fought alongside Wil Smiff against the alien invasion of Earth a "pussy" is anti-patriotic then let me say the people on the Lusitania deserved to die.


Memphis Belle. But thanks for playing, IMDB fail factory
 
2013-05-06 08:05:39 AM  

ecmoRandomNumbers: Melisma kills songs. The Star-Spangled Banner is NOT 8,000 notes. If you were to transcribe a typical modern power-diva's rendition of our national anthem, it would read like a Rachmaninoff concerto.


So much this.
 
2013-05-06 08:13:37 AM  
Isn't this the douchetard that tried to sneak a gun on a plane in '92 and plea bargained away jail time while any of us would have been in GITMO?

Fark him and his lack of musical talent.
 
2013-05-06 08:14:32 AM  

propasaurus: bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.

Hmm... you've never watched it, yet you know that they're only talentless karaoke singers who don't sing original music.


Well, thats a given. I have seen a few commercials for that piece of dren, thats all the info I require. Ditto for 99% of all  " talent "and " reality" shows.
 
2013-05-06 08:17:06 AM  

SockMonkeyHolocaust: Are you his mom or a 14 year-old fangirl? Because that's the only reason why I'd imagine anyone would type those words in defense of a melted blob of wax hitting pitch-perfect covers of songs that sound vaguely familiar.


Witty, but not a musically convincing argument.  Try again?

This time, consider how you might do in a one-on-one debate with Connick over the artists and music contained in The Great American Songbook.  If your feel that your level of knowledge reaches the encyclopedic proportions as his, then by all means show us your stuff and prove me wrong.

Until then, you're a comparative musical ignoramus who confuses personal taste with qualitative critique.
 
2013-05-06 08:18:50 AM  
Connick gave these kids the best professional advice they have ever had. If any one of them is truly serious about a singing career, they would listen and learn.
 
2013-05-06 08:22:17 AM  

propasaurus: bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.

Hmm... you've never watched it, yet you know that they're only talentless karaoke singers who don't sing original music.


I've never watched an episode myself, but in the years it's been on the air it's nigh impossible to have not seen some of it. It's televised karaoke. That's it. No more "talent" than you'd find on display at your local bar on a Thursday night. Better looking, perhaps (it's really interesting how there are no ass-ugly people with vocal talent out there... the contestants that I've seen make the cut are all very tv-friendly, imagine that).

The old masters could move an audience without breaking a sweat. These folks look like they're gonna bust a vein every time they hit the stage... that's not masterful, nor is it healthy.

CSB: the female lead of a local cover band felt she had to hit her limit for every song they did (likely overcompensating for being a mediocre vocalist, which is being generous). It played well for a couple of months, and they pulled some decent audiences for a bar band... until the night she stroked out on the bathroom floor during a set break. Sad, but our frontman called it a few weeks before when he looked at me and said "she's gonna give herself a stroke doing that constantly", and she damn sure did.
 
2013-05-06 08:23:54 AM  

Speaker2Animals: ecmoRandomNumbers: Melisma kills songs. The Star-Spangled Banner is NOT 8,000 notes. If you were to transcribe a typical modern power-diva's rendition of our national anthem, it would read like a Rachmaninoff concerto.

So much this.


Speaking of that, did anyone catch Robin Meade singing the Star Spangled Banner at Talladega this weekend? It was horrible.
 
2013-05-06 08:27:44 AM  

vudukungfu: Isn't this the douchetard that tried to sneak a gun on a plane in '92 and plea bargained away jail time while any of us would have been in GITMO?


Probably not.
 
2013-05-06 08:28:18 AM  

bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.


Some other people who only sing other people's stuff you may want to avoid:

Frank Sinatra
Bing Crosby
Tony Bennett

ecmoRandomNumbers: Melisma kills songs. The Star-Spangled Banner is NOT 8,000 notes. If you were to transcribe a typical modern power-diva's rendition of our national anthem, it would read like a Rachmaninoff concerto.


So I take it you're not a fan of Jimi Hendrix's version?
 
2013-05-06 08:31:53 AM  

nmrsnr: bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.

Some other people who only sing other people's stuff you may want to avoid:

Frank Sinatra
Bing Crosby
Tony Bennett



Ella Fitzgerald
Louis Armstrong
Lena Horn
Peggy Lee
 
2013-05-06 08:33:05 AM  

bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.


Lots of great singers only sing other peoples' work. Just because you can sing, doesn't mean you can write songs.
 
2013-05-06 08:34:44 AM  
What the contestants fail to realize is that they need to be able to sing the song without the melisma before they add it in.

All the runs do is show that they don't really know the song.
 
2013-05-06 08:40:39 AM  

Tom_Slick: nmrsnr: bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.

Some other people who only sing other people's stuff you may want to avoid:

Frank Sinatra
Bing Crosby
Tony Bennett


Ella Fitzgerald
Louis Armstrong
Lena Horn
Peggy Lee


Elvis Presley
 
2013-05-06 08:40:44 AM  

karmachameleon: SockMonkeyHolocaust: Are you his mom or a 14 year-old fangirl? Because that's the only reason why I'd imagine anyone would type those words in defense of a melted blob of wax hitting pitch-perfect covers of songs that sound vaguely familiar.

Witty, but not a musically convincing argument.  Try again?

This time, consider how you might do in a one-on-one debate with Connick over the artists and music contained in The Great American Songbook.  If your feel that your level of knowledge reaches the encyclopedic proportions as his, then by all means show us your stuff and prove me wrong.

Until then, you're a comparative musical ignoramus who confuses personal taste with qualitative critique.


Just because a person is knowledgeable about music, doesn't mean they are a great performer.

/or: those who can't do, teach
 
2013-05-06 08:41:37 AM  

Rotter: Next up: Stephen Sondheim night. A composer who crafts tricky music without a single unconsidered element, and who is capable of coaching inexperienced singers brilliantly.

Sondheim, teaching a voice student "My Friends" from "Sweeney Todd":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DBCVaFqGJwg

Randy, after the performance: "Yo, I was bored. I mean, seriously. You're singing about friendship. You don't sound happy, man. You should have done that like Timberlake rocked out 'U N Me N No Body' at the VMAs. Not your best."


Wait, Idol is doing a Sondheim night???  That sounds like a disaster waiting to happen. I can see Idol doing Andrew Lloyd Webber music since his stuff is usually very "pop". But the intricacies of Sondheim's stuff are so, I don't know, delicate and complex, and are about as far away as you can get from the danceable, hummable sing-a-longs that Idol requires.
 
2013-05-06 08:43:45 AM  
He's not wrong, but I also wouldn't be surprised this whole thing was as manufactured as the rest of that stupid show.
 
2013-05-06 08:45:13 AM  

Tom_Slick: nmrsnr: bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.

Some other people who only sing other people's stuff you may want to avoid:

Frank Sinatra
Bing Crosby
Tony Bennett


Ella Fitzgerald
Louis Armstrong
Lena Horn
Peggy Lee


I get the point you folks are trying to make, and I agree 100 percent. A gifted song interpreter is every bit the artist a singer/songwriter is. However, Frank, Louis and Peggy all had songwriting credits. One of my favorite songs is "Whee Baby" sung by Miss June Christy, and co-written by Miss Peggy Lee.
 
2013-05-06 08:46:22 AM  
2.bp.blogspot.com
LOL

 
2013-05-06 08:48:59 AM  
What are the chances that this whole brouhaha is nothing more than a scripted plot element designed to get some much-needed buzz for an aging "reality" show?
 
2013-05-06 08:50:22 AM  

ThatGuyFromTheInternet: vudukungfu: Isn't this the douchetard that tried to sneak a gun on a plane in '92 and plea bargained away jail time while any of us would have been in GITMO?

Probably not.


Actually yes, he avoided jail in exchange for doing a PSA. Of course it was pre 9/11 so I'm not surprised by the slap on the wrist...
 
2013-05-06 08:52:53 AM  
i.imgur.com
 
2013-05-06 08:53:39 AM  

The Why Not Guy: Tom_Slick: nmrsnr: bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.

Some other people who only sing other people's stuff you may want to avoid:

Frank Sinatra
Bing Crosby
Tony Bennett


Ella Fitzgerald
Louis Armstrong
Lena Horn
Peggy Lee

I get the point you folks are trying to make, and I agree 100 percent. A gifted song interpreter is every bit the artist a singer/songwriter is. However, Frank, Louis and Peggy all had songwriting credits. One of my favorite songs is "Whee Baby" sung by Miss June Christy, and co-written by Miss Peggy Lee.


To be fair, most of the big name record label crooners from that era really didn't write their owns songs. I've always been impressed by the sheer volume of music Elvis put out across different styles, and yet never wrote a single song.

You probably have to look at the more traditional country and blues artists who did their own writing who weren't a part of the corporate record label industry.
 
2013-05-06 08:54:52 AM  

Tom_Slick: Speaker2Animals: ecmoRandomNumbers: Melisma kills songs. The Star-Spangled Banner is NOT 8,000 notes. If you were to transcribe a typical modern power-diva's rendition of our national anthem, it would read like a Rachmaninoff concerto.

So much this.

Speaking of that, did anyone catch Robin Meade singing the Star Spangled Banner at Talladega this weekend? It was horrible.


Nope, but I did catch James and Kirk absolutely nail the Anthem before the Giants game last week.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWXPg1KERt4
 
2013-05-06 09:08:47 AM  

Cyno01: [i.imgur.com image 460x345]


Love the advice, but Dave Grohl's (and Herry Connick Jr.'s) idealism is misplaced. Everything you need to know about these contestants' ambitions is right in the title of the show. They don't want to be musicians; they want to be idols. They want to be famous singers, not singers who happen to be famous. If you think about it from that perspective, shows like American Idol and The Voice are the paths of least resistance.

I always cringe at promos for results shows when the voiceover guys ask "WHO DO YOU LOVE?" or "WHO DOES AMERICA LOVE?" It's a little heartbreaking thinking that these people are not only starved for love and validation but are confusing it with artistic success. I want my friends and family to "love" me. I want the people who sign my checks to respect my work. But that's the industry and that's what they signed up for.
 
2013-05-06 09:21:59 AM  

Cyno01: [i.imgur.com image 460x345]


Thought instantly of this. I also like this quote from Dave.

"I think people should feel encouraged to be themselves." the "Everlong" singer said. "That's what bums me out about those shows where people are judged so harshly by f**king musicians that hardly even play an instrument on their own f**king albums. It makes me really mad."
 
2013-05-06 09:24:52 AM  

ecmoRandomNumbers: Melisma kills songs. The Star-Spangled Banner is NOT 8,000 notes. If you were to transcribe a typical modern power-diva's rendition of our national anthem, it would read like a Rachmaninoff concerto.


4.bp.blogspot.com
 
2013-05-06 09:28:33 AM  

Cyno01: [i.imgur.com image 460x345]


*shakes tiny fist of impotent rage*
 
2013-05-06 09:29:02 AM  
We're past due for the next musical counterculture.  Way past due.
 
2013-05-06 09:35:34 AM  

bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.


You seem to be under the impression that singing and writing require the same skills. Umm, they don't. I'm an excellent writer and a horrible, horrible singer. I sound like the lovechild of Popeye and Fran Drescher.

Even those who "write" their songs often don't. Someone like Taylor Swift might write "My Boyfriend is bad" on a napkin. After that, 2 pro writers take it, write a song around it  (with actual intros, structure, verses, bridge, chords that are more advanced than the 3 Taylor knows),  hire arrangers, orchestrators, session players (who are basically "writing" their own parts), synth programmers, engineers, and a producer who knows every studio trick under the sun. The result? Taylor Swift "being herself".
 
2013-05-06 09:42:49 AM  

propasaurus: bborchar: I have never watched that because people are basically singing karaoke. They only display the talent necessary to sing someone else's songs. Sing your own stuff, be yourself. And don't be stupid enough to think that there is a shortcut to stardom.

Hmm... you've never watched it, yet you know that they're only talentless karaoke singers who don't sing original music.


Seriously?  You don't have to watch it to know about it, since they promoted the hell out of it for a while, and everyone around me talked about it constantly.  Talkshows, late night, news- it was unavoidable for a long time until all of the other contest shows came out.

Musikslayer: bborchar: You seem to be under the impression that singing and writing require the same skills. Umm, they don't. I'm an excellent writer and a horrible, horrible singer. I sound like the lovechild of Popeye and Fran Drescher.

Even those who "write" their songs often don't. Someone like Taylor Swift might write "My Boyfriend is bad" on a napkin. After that, 2 pro writers take it, write a song around it  (with actual intros, structure, verses, bridge, chords that are more advanced than the 3 Taylor knows),  hire arrangers, orchestrators, session players (who are basically "writing" their own parts), synth programmers, engineers, and a producer who knows every studio trick under the sun. The result? Taylor Swift "being herself".


And no, I don't think that every singer writes or composes their own songs- but even then, they can perform the song how they want to, instead of being compared to the original singer.  That's the part that bothers me.
 
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