The YouTube experiment on “America’s Got Talent” proves to be a bit of a disaster, but little Jackie Evancho saves the night.
I have to confess — I’m a huge nerd for college a capella music. My school had the True Men. I’m also big fans of Indiana’s Straight No Chaser, UPenn Off the Beat and the Wash U. Pikers. This group is pretty fun, even if I don’t think “Low” shows off their vocals the best. I’m in agreement with Piers that it needs less cheese, but I definitely think they should advance.
2. Dylan Plummer
Dylan is a jump rope artist, which is neat, but not something that can sustain a Las Vegas show, methinks. Man, if he keeps this up, he’ll have Popeye forearms by the time he’s 15. What this act needs is more people. Not all the background people, but more jump ropers. Then it would be an act. As it was, I’m a little surprised Piers didn’t buzz him out, honestly.
This is an old man and his accordion-playing dog. Except so far it’s just an old man playing the guitar and singing and the poor dog looks confused. They need to get to the good stuff faster. Except, wait … what happened here? Even at the beginning when he supposedly “played,” I couldn’t hear it and didn’t know what he was doing. Hmm. I feel bad for the old man and the dog was adorable, but just … no.
4. Cam Hodges
Cam is a singer-guitarist, like this show needs more of those. He sounds like someone famous — Rob Thomas? John Mayer? I don’t know, they all sound the same to me. Eh, he’s okay, but I’m not blown away. His falsetto is a bit rough. He’ll probably advance because he’s cute and this show always turns into “America’s Got Singing.”
5. Ryan Rodriguez
So Ryan is a plumber/dancer submitted by his wife. That’s adorable. He comes out like he’s stepped right off the “Mad Max” set and his dancing is all over the place. Sorry, Ryan. You seem really nice. But — next.
Less than halfway through, I feel like “America’s Got Talent” may want to rethink the YouTube auditions idea.
6. Austin Anderson
Wow, stand-up is hard for these kind of things because you have to be fresh every week. It’s not the same as dancing or singing and just picking different music every week. And then Austin starts his “jokes” — yikes. His line about “that’s not his baby” is the only thing that makes me laugh. Wow, that was painful.
7. Booker Forte
Booker is a hip-hop dancer and he’s okay, but again … this is nothing special. There were better dancers who have already been eliminated on this show. This YouTube experiment is proving to be kind of a failure. Just because you can do something well on a YouTube video does not mean it translates to a live act/big stage.
8. Pizza Pat
So Pat is a pizza tosser. Huh. I’m skeptical, but then he starts and I think this might be the best thing all night. Piers buzzes again, but I think that was a bit hasty, especially when he lights it on fire. I mean, it’s all relative because tonight is so comparatively weak, but that was kind of awesome. It’s very cheesy Vegas, so that works. Howie very snottily says you see that in the window of pizzerias everywhere. I disagree — not everybody is as talented at it as Pat. Howie then makes a disgusting yeast infection joke. Dude.
9. Kristina Young
I’m not won over by her “Amazing Grace” audition video, but let’s give her a chance. She’s an adorable girl, which will definitely help her. She sings “Before He Cheats,” so that’ll be popular with the voters too. The chorus gets better than the verse, but her voice is almost too thick and not bright enough for the song. Does that make sense? Also — that low bottom note? That was NOT there. Ehh, I’m not that fussed over her. (And upon playback — no. Not even as good as I initially thought.)
10. Maestro Alexander Bui
So here’s a piano prodigy. His piece is very pretty and he’s obviously incredibly talented, but …. zzzzz. I’m done with this. Not right for this show. Moving on. Whoa! He got buzzed by Sharon! That’s unusual. She agrees with me — not the right place or right time. It was not
trashy mainstream enough for this show. Piers is clearly in love with him and his talent, but it’s because Piers likes to pretend he’s on a fancier show than he is. Sorry, Tea & Crumpets. This is “America’s Got Talent,” not Julliard.
11. Dan Sperry
This goth “anti-conjurer” does a really weird trick with a lifesaver and some floss. It’s a little small scale for TV, but pretty good for a starter trick and it freaks Howie right the eff out because Dan drops his floss in Howie’s general direction when he’s done with it. Sharon and Piers laugh so hard and Howie runs for it. That was pretty good, I’d be curious to see what he’d do with a bigger trick.
12. Jackie Evancho
This is one of those weird children who sound like they’re 40 years old. She’s 10 and is an adorable, cute blonde. She’ll be popular. Luckily, she can back it up with an amazing voice. She sings “O Mio Babbino Caro,” which is no easy feat (I’ve sung it for competitions). I don’t like the way her voice shifts to the back of her throat sometimes. It’s prettier when it’s bright and brassy. Still, she’s very good. And not just for being 10. She’s good for anybody.
What a cutie. The judges love her, she gets a standing ovation. How has this girl not actually auditioned for this show? Why did they have to find her on YouTube?
Now, the reason this little girl (who sang an Italian aria) is different from the pianist is because she’s more interesting to watch and listen to. She just is. He may be the most talented person that performed tonight, but should he advance? Not sure.
Either way, she kind of saved the night, as Howie points out without really saying it. Do four acts advance out of this group? If it’s four, I pick Plutonic, Maestro Alexander Bui, Dan Sperry and Jackie Evancho — though I do think Pizza Pat is more Vegas than three of those four acts.
What did you think of YouTube night? And Jackie’s YouTube audition and tonight’s performance are below, if you’d like to watch.
Next week: Semi-finals. Finally.
Photo credit: NBC