Each week on American Idol
, contestants have to learn a new song from a particular time in the last century that exemplifies a certain style of music - modelled after the time, the writers, or the singers.
Cole Porter and Irving Berlin. George and Ira Gershwin. The Motown catalogue. The soul of Stevie Wonder. The schlock of Barry Manilow.
On last week’s episode, they announced the contestants would select songs from the 21st century. I don’t know if it’s just me, but the naughts haven’t really developed a strong musical identity. They’re as schizophrenic as Courtney Love coming down from a drug-induced high.
Hip-hop. Country. The fall of pop. The rise of personality-free wuss-rock.
This week's selections of the contestants may prove the 21st century will be known as the decade of shitty music…
Skinny black girl – Because of you
. Beautiful song. Because of you... I'm ashamed of my life because I picked a song that I couldn't sing.
Blonde white hick girl – Country hick song
. You lost your man, your house and your dog. We lost our mind.
Jake Gyllenhaal Jr. – Drops of Jupiter
. Those are actually tears, JGJ. Tears from your adoring fans realizing you chose a suck-ass song. Oh, and keep your shirt on, 'cause Paula will pounce and release the cougar within if you give her any
Old young guy – Trouble
. When I heard you were singing Trouble, I thought of the Pink version with the western thing going on. Kick ass. Then you sang something else. Oh well, I guess you are in trouble.
Big black girl, big black voice – Shackles (praise you)
. The song makes you want to convert. The louder you sing, the more Jesus can hear you. And Jesus ain't deaf.Live
’s replacement singer – What if
. What if I didn't barf in my mouth a little after hearing you chose a song by Creed
? What if you actually sang a song that sounded different from every other song you sang, week after week?
Kelly Clarkson Jr. – The voice within
. Out of all the diva songs out there, you chose this one. Aren’t there tons of vocal-gymnastic-challenging songs out there? Oh wait, there aren’t.
Blonde white hick boy – Country hick song
. Look up blonde white hick girl for explanation.
Lil' black girl, big black voice – Work it out
. Worked it out she did. And, she tore it up, whipped it around, and did the booty bounce.
White boy, black voice – I don’t wanna be
. Great pop-rock song, but Bo Bice sang it better. Still love you, though.
There you have it: ten songs that almost no one will remember after the credits roll on Wednesday’s results show.
And, that’s the way it ought to be.