Live-Blogging The Finale, Part I: Six Songs That Will Move A Nation Closer … To Its Cell Phones

noah | May 22, 2007 8:55 am

Are you all ready for the pageantry of the American Idol finale, and its anything-can-happen aura? The live performances! The special guests! The possibly very crummy coronation song, sung by one winner and one person to whom it’ll be utterly meaningless!

We’re not sure if we are, either, but that doesn’t mean anything in the as-it-happens world of live-blogging. Join us for updates after the jump.

7:52 p.m. The anticipation is building. Can you feel it?

7:55 p.m. Also, if anyone would like to leave Mets-Braves updates in the comments section, we would be eternally grateful. Seriously.

8:00 p.m. “100,000 down, two to go”? Calm down, Ryan.

8:01 p.m. Please don’t let Katharine McPhee speak for all women. That “Open Toes” song is just the worst.

8:02 p.m. Randy Jackson: Styling by Moonwalker.


8:03 p.m. The songwriting contest winner came from Seattle, too? Let’s hope it’s the Candlebox guy.

8:03 p.m. Also: Supertramp in the background. The revival is nigh, people!

8:06 p.m. Aw, remember the Seattle auditions? We’ve all grown so much since then. Except Jordin, of course, because she’s only 17! (Cue the Winger.)

8:08 p.m. A great tie-in: Having one of the Idols (well, okay, Blake) sing that song by the 88s. Could you imagine?

8:09 p.m. A question from our companion on watching a promo for If You Can’t Dance We’ll Make Fun Of You: “Is there always a British guy?” Yes. Yes, there is.

8:10 p.m Blake is up first. “This Is My Now” won the song competition–but he’s singing “You Give Love A Bad Name” to start. COMPLETE WITH EXTRA SOUND EFFECTING. Where is Michael Winslow?

8:12 p.m. Seriously, how did people like this on the first go-round? It really does just sound cut-and-pasted together by a not very deft sixth grader.

8:12 p.m. Odds that Simon will say “It’s a singing competition”: 4-1.

8:13 p.m. The first “alright, so check it out” of the night. Also, oh man, poor Paula, who is trying to add ten to itself over and over.

8:15 p.m. All the finalists are there! And Phil is in his Navy blues!

8:16 p.m. Our companion: “The clock is ticking on Nelly Furtado featuring Blake Lewis.”

8:16 p.m. Jordin sings “Fighter” by Christina Aguilera. Not the best choice for her as an opening song, in part because it’s really exposing her vocal weaknesses, in part because, well, what exactly has she had to fight for?

8:17 p.m. “Thanks for making me have to sound like I’m straining on every note.”

8:18 p.m. Randy seems very not thrilled. Wait, he’s saying she was “stellar”?

8:18 p.m. Oh Paula. Oh.

8:18 p.m. Simon busts out “shrieky”! And he’s right, really. And he’s calling Round 1 for the beatboxer.

8:21 p.m. Prediction: In three years, the contestants will only be allowed to sing songs used in sponsoring companies’ commercials. Too bad it’s not happening sooner, really, because Blake would have loved to perform “It Takes Two (Applebee’s Combo Remix).”

8:24 p.m. Blake talks about his inspiration for beatboxing. And he fooled his dad into thinking it was a set of drums! So sweet.

8:27 p.m. Why does Paula think this is Blake’s first song?

8:28 p.m. We wouldn’t have chosen this song, either, Simon. Do you know why? Because it is really freaking boring.

8:30 p.m. It’s the halfway point, so we are stealing over to, where we are finding out that Jorge Sosa has reached his potential–of being down 4-0 in the bottom of the third.

8:32 p.m. Jordin as a kid–in a velour tracksuit and off-key.

8:34 p.m. And now she’s singing Martina McBride’s “A Broken Wing,” in a more “countrified” version. Wait, does her shirt have a bird on it? POINTS OFF.

8:35 p.m. So OK, the new Fergie song is basically marked by her being completely unable to enunciate her words, and we’re wondering if Jordin has taken that tack. Because her performance of this song a few weeks back was not as–what’s the word–soupy?

8:36 p.m. Randy: “Age Ain’t Nothin’ But A Number.” And flawless? Um, that’s sort of ridiculous.

8:36 p.m. Simon liked it too. (We’re not even paying attention to Paula anymore.) Attention America: We are now living in the post-syllabic age.

8:39 p.m. Twenty-one minutes to go. Will we be able to withstand two performances of the craptastic “winner” of the songwriting competition?

8:40 p.m. How Fox keeps you tuned in: By teasing you with the story of a kid who got mauled by a coyote … twice.

8:42 p.m. Blake is just hanging out, singing, wearing tight pants, you know.

8:42 p.m. Here are some previous lyrics by the scribes who crafted this anthem.

8:43 p.m. “Scott Krippayne is a singer-songwriter who cares about writing music that reflects life, resonates with people, and touches the heart. He also desires to earn enough money from songwriting to put food on the table for his wife and two kids. Jeff Peabody is a songwriter, advertising guru, graphic designer, and a pastor.” So Peabody will get along with Jordin smashingly, then.

8:43 p.m. Is this the “now” for the song’s first rehearsal? The mix is terrible–a loud guitar strum, overblasted backing vocals.

8:44 p.m. The best part about this song? We get to hear it again. Okay, not really.

8:45 p.m. Randy: “You don’t have to feel that bad about it.” Thanks?

8:46 p.m. A taunting IM from a friend: “This VMars episode is so good.” Grrrr.

8:51 p.m. The audience is much more interested in waving at the camera than what Ryan has to say.

8:51 p.m. Jordin’s up with the ballad. Can she let her voice stay on a note for more than half a second? Tune in to find out!

8:52 p.m. So the problem with this song is the bridge; it’s just not elegantly written.

8:53 p.m. Melinda Doolittle is watching Jordin on stage, thinking, “I could have made that bridge interesting, you rube.”

8:53 p.m. The Big High Note That You Are Supposed To Clap To: This is Jordin’s now.

8:54 p.m. Jordin starts crying during the song’s end! Will it win America over or will it make them get all “this is a singing competition”?

8:55 p.m. If Randy has his way, it’ll be the former.

8:55 p.m. Simon: “You just wiped the floor with Blake on that song.” So will this praise have the same detrimental effect that the praise of Melinda did?

8:58 p.m. A look back at tonight. Is it over already? Where did the time–and the syllables–go?

8:59 p.m. Did Paula just call Blake “Chris”?

8:59 p.m. Randy calls it for Jordin; Simon says the best individual performance was Blake’s Bon Jovi cover, but Jordin won the night.

9:00 p.m. Paula: “But they’re alllll winners!!!” And then she flops over.

9:00 p.m. Daughtry returns to make Melinda and Lakisha feel better, and we realize that this song is pretty much “Every Rose Has Its Thorn II.”

9:01 p.m. Seriously, we hope that Bret Michaels and CC Deville are asking for royalties. Or at least writing songs for Nickelback!

9:02 p.m. It’s over, and we have four hours to vote and wait and wish that someone, anyone, who could actually write a song could have entered the schmaltz competition. (And that Melinda was still in, because at least then we’d have someone to semi-legitimately root for.)