Thursday, April 28, 2011

American Idol - Jacob goes Home?

Hi Thursday Fans! I've been remiss but i want to post before I go to my critique group-  to announce that I believe that Jacob will go home on American Idol this evening.
Everyone sang their best last night but i fear that Jacob's best is not the American Idol Dream. Scotty and James were last night's front runners, Lauren was her amazing but insecure self, Haley and CAsey must go on tour together now but Jacob was the weak link. I'm sorry. I loved the fact that he's brave enough to wear a plaid golf coat on national TV and smile with such vulnerability but it's time for him to go. Both James and Scotty stepped it up to the point where they might just be the top two? Scotty's best was last night and I'm not a big Scotty fan, so far.
The bottom three...Haley (hey- what's a Thursday night without her in the bottom 3, Jacob and maybe Lauren. We'll see in one hour...

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

'Teau Mama's

What is a 'Teau Mama, you ask? Well you might not have to ask that silly question if you lived on the Sammamish Plateau, east of Seattle and you are a Mother. I capitalize the word Mother, as I would capitalize the word "Queen" or "President" because I happen to believe that the job is as important, if not more so (thinking of Queen Elizabeth who doesn't even want to meet her in laws before the wedding) than some of the most celebrated jobs in the world. Can you say talk show host or American Idol judge?
Life on the 'Teau can be soggy sometimes, well, nine months out of the year, but it is a slice of the American Dream. Where else can your kids get such an amazing education in the public school system, houses are reasonably priced, trees are green twelve months a year, and we are only a five hour plane ride to Maui if things get too dreary? 'Teau life is sweet. Admit it.
The summer, although it is short, is one of the greenest summers you'll ever see and having Pine Lake and Beaver Lake close is golden. Concerts in the park, sport camps, the outdoor market at City Hall. Remember in 2009 Money Magazine ranked Sammamish the 12th best American small town to live in? Life here still rocks and one of the reasons for that are the 'Teau Mama's. We make life sweet, in so many ways.
Many Mothers in this area do not work outside the home which is actually a phrase I'd like to change to say "do not work outside the family's every want and wish" because how many of us spend our days running errands, walking dogs and networking with other moms outside the home and it's still work? Does anyone out there believe that lunching with the girls is pure fun? Do you know what we talk about at lunch? The kids' homework habits, where to buy the best produce,how to take a vacation on a budget and what you made for dinner the night before that you'd highly recommend because it was fast and easy with the least amount of dishes ever seen in a kitchen. It's our version of a business meeting.Mothers I know here spend sixteen of their seventeen waking hours thinking about how to make life better for their families and yet still retain a semblance of sanity, all while looking smokin' hot at Safeway and we find time to be pleasant even if our day has been filled with insults from our teenagers, paying bills and quieting our barking dogs. Where do we summon all this good mojo? Well the occasional glass of pinot grigio, certainly, but occasionally we have to take an exercise class, have a pedicure or make a quick trip to a clothing store to find something to cover our muffin tops and these stolen moments put us back on track and reassure us that we used to be people too. Individuals who had our own set of demands before kids came along, liked to sing karaoke and do sports, swear, sing and dance around the house without someone telling you that you can't carry a tune. Just because we now devote our lives to children who will grow up to be the Sammamish mayor, own the pizza parlour, spearhead a project to save the possums doesn't mean we cease to exist. As a matter of fact, many 'Teau Mamas have full careers, volunteer many hours a week at the schools, head up committees to make life better for us all. But that's another story for another day. Today it's just enough to be the Goddesses that we are - Stay at Home 'Teau Mama's.

Friday, April 22, 2011

American Idol - Stefano Goes Home

OH MY GOD! I can finally blog again. My computer had problems last week, we rebooted some stuff and nothing's been the same, including my ability to blog. Can you say WHEW!Well I can.

Last night on American Idol Stefano went home after being in the bottom three for almost every week since the judges rescued him as the wildcard option. It was his time, I'm sorry Stefano fans but someone must go home every single week and this week it was him. With his usual grace and manners, the singer from Kent WA smiled through the ousting and promised it was just the beginning of his career. He was grateful to have made it this far. The other idols might have joked about thinking he's a ladies man but Stefano showed class last night. Strangely enough his final number on the big stage was his best performance ever - singing Lately, by Stevie Wonder. He rocked the house, sang almost perfectly and made me wish I voted for him this week.
I voted for James who, really, is the only one up there with the polish of a super star. True his facial ticks are distacting and Aspbergers keeps him from doing the appropriate thing sometimes but he is one hell of a singer, loves to perform, adores his audience, dresses the part (did you see his costume on Tuesday, thank you?) and deserves to win Idol.
Casey is a talented force, but I fear when the judges say to keep upping the performances every week, he has nowhere to go but more growly faces. I love the guy but i don't think he's the Idol.
Lauren could be the Idol but doesn't use her potential, looks frightened onstage and is just plain too young for all this. Scotty is ready but too cheesey. I have to say that child has grown by leaps and bounds over the weeks and is a cute little package for the country circuit.
Jacob needs to pour it on, perform like it's his concert and love us more out here in TV land. Haley has so much going for her, including style, voice, hair, smile, the cute factor, but there is just something about her that we don't either believe or love. She needs more camera time talking about her tough life to get out of the bottom three. She and Casey should join forces professionally and make a CD. Just sayin'.
With Pia gone, I'm voting for James now but the disappointment of finding another rocker boy, instead of an amazing singer girl for the Idol is setting in. I want so much for some of these fantastic girls to get their just recognition but i fear for the teenage girl texting power. For that reason next week my texting finger may be be hovering over Lauren or Haley's number as well. What about you?
Katy Perry last night lost my vote for integrity. NOt only does she use smarmy Kanye on the song ET, but she lets him take it to a level that makes me turn off the radio whenever it comes on. Katy - you are not Gaga, go back to original cute look please.
David Cook remained true to his art and sang a rock song from his upcoming album that showed us why we loved him two years ago. Sound problems did not stop him from delivering, nor did his Mama hugging Steven Tyler, which was cute. Love this guy.
As usual the group numbers last night sucked and I can't imagine the performers with integrity, enjoyed being forced to sing the currents hits as they awkwardly moved about the stage, trying to remember when to stick their hands in the air, put left feet forward, etc. Pleeeeaaase. SAve us from these numbers. Can't you think of something else?
What do you think?

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Can't Sing Like I Used To - But that's....okay

I like myself, I am a good person, I like myself, I am a nice human being. Affirmations.
Last night I got on the housewife/mother party train and bought a ticket to fun with my gal pals. We reached our destination and when karaoke seemed inevitable I signed up for a song, thinking the voice would come when summoned. Not so true. Granted, karaoke does not necessitate perfection but my gals wanted to hear me do a song and I obliged. I'm not sure what they heard.
Heatwave has lots of high notes, energy and words to cram into a small space and just because I rocked that song for many years, doesn't mean I still can. Should I have chosen more wisely? I don't know. Taking oneself too seriously is a trap I climbed out of long ago. It was just a night out with friends and I didn't want to get all Barbra Streisand at a biker's karaoke bar. So I sang my song as best I could and sat down with a big smile on my face, like a cook who knows they burned the bechamel sauce but doesn't admit it.
We danced, we laughed, we sang, we got away from our messy houses and the incessant rain of this Seattle spring for a few hours and were once again just girls. Sure my voice is rusty having been parked for years in a storage closet but I can't sing like I used to and that's ...okay.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Pia Toscano Leaves Idol

It's a sad day here at Kimmy's Korner with the elimination of Pia on Idol. She was clearly a front runner for the top spot and instead got booted out in 9th place, thereby proving that it isn't talent we are voting for. America seems to be voting for something else and, as a singer, I can't tell you what. The only 3 singers who've never been in the bottom three are Lauren, Scotty and James. They are three of the youngest, with country and hard rock roots and all with family in the audience on a regular basis. I can imagaine that these three have a fan base who probably know how to multi text their votes over a 2 hour period.
The buzz online today is shock that Pia did not receive a huge chunk of Wednesday night's vote. Even Tom Hanks tweeted his amazement and mentionned he might not continue watching Idol.
Granted Pia has a huge career ahead of her, but this was just wrong and I seriously hope that Idol revisits the voting process after this. Pia was ratings for the show and having her gone, will probably loose them viewers who like to listen to someone hit the notes, look star-ready and carry herself with poise.
Which brings me to my last point about Pia. Maybe the crowd needed a granny in the front row in the wheelchair section, or a sad sack story about Pia's struggle with a disease or something that the American public could grab onto to make her ours. That and the ballad rut she fell into hurt her chances. ONstage fear translated into aloofness and we misjudged the girl.
And now i'm going to itunes to download her version of "I'll Stand By You" one of the best ever renditions of any song done on Idol.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

American Idol-Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Night

Last night the Idols chose songs from artitists inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame so they had plenty to choose from and most chose wisely. Will i Am was on hand for rehearsals with Jimmy Iovine and iIhave to say that Will is a riot. I can't imagine how the Black Eyed Peas get anything done with him in the band. He be funny. But what does he have to do with R and R Hall of FAme? Nada.
Starting off the night was Jacob who proved he's amazing, gave it his all but is he Idol material? Still think Broadway needs to grab that man for something wonderful. His emotion and presence onstage would be wasted with a recording career.
Then Haley did Janis Joplin, putting a little too much affected grit into her song as if someone told her to smear dirt on the song and drag it through a thick puddle. Haley has a voice that can handle Joplin but I'm not sure she was thinking about being dumped by Stefano last month when she sang. Smiling during that song should not be allowed.
Casey came next with his upright bass and did Have you Ever Seen the Rain, one of my favorites from way back. His version was gorgeous, amazing and as Randy said, he is making the upright bass cool again.
Tackling an Aretha song is never easy and Lauren only did a good job of it. She has the pipes to do so much more but stayed safe, thereby putting her in my bottom three this week. Sorry but she's a baby in this competition in so many ways.
One might think that James would go nuts with so much to choose from this week in rock and roll but instead he sang While My Guitar Gently Weeps. Although technically it was not perfect, and only really found his voice when he amped it up a bit, it was nice to see his emotional side and i really don't think he needs to worry about going home soon.
Scotty did Elvis. It was hokey, it was right on key, it was cheesey but he did a fine job and please, someone give him a bus ticket to Nashville and a recording contract.
River Deep was a fantastic choice for Pia and changing her hair,  her makeup, her song style was the shot in the arm she needed to propel her forward and keep her out of the bottom three. I fear that if America does not see some emotion from her soon, they might not support her until the end. She is still to controlled, too guarded for us to love her as a person and give her this gift of fame.
Stefano pulled up his bootstraps and tackled When a Man Loves a Woman - a difficult song because of all the words one must fit into a cadence that doesn't support them. Jimmy, Will and later Randy pointed out how to pause, wait, take a run at the phrasing but Stefano found it difficult making him another contender for bottom three this week.
Paul, Paul, Paul....America, do you really want this guy to represent what you think is an idol? Or are you voting for his smile? As he danced around last night during Folsum Prison Blues, I had to admit he did a better job with it than any song previously but smiling during this song is like humming at a funeral. It's inappropriate. Paul needs to go. Will he be in the bottom three? Maybe not. If Naima's theory is right about text voting 500 times, I fear that the teenaged girls will keep him around. And especially now that Niki Reed of Twilight is crushing on him...he's reaching celebrity status with minimal talent.
Bottom three prediction for tonight: Stefano, Lauren and hopefully Paul or Jacob.
What do you think?

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Author's Celebrity Image or I'll Have What She's Drinking!

With the expectation for authors to self-promote, it's increasingly important for a quiet, reclusive writer to now learn the art of presenting oneself properly in public. Granted, it's very difficult to go from spending every day in your robe with hair unbrushed, coffee breath, no human contact, to Rock Star Ready. Besides, we chose to be writers because we communicate best on the page, not by mouth, right?
Luckily there's hope for anyone too shy to step out from behind their PC or Mac. Miss Kimmy has developed a workshop to help you emerge with the image you want to convey to your readers, whether it's that of a sassy, brazen romance writer or a polished business woman.
Channeling Your Inner Rock Star or  I'll Have What She's Drinking is a 3 week course conducted online for anyone needing help in getting themselves ready for that inevitable book tour. It will include guidelines on how to find your image, your style, how to voice yourself, pose for photos, accept a compliment, how to promote yourself without sounding presumptuous, tricks for the red carpet and we'll conclude with how to vlog on camera with all the confidence you deserve.
When the call comes and you need to get yourself dressed, poised and ready to present the wonderful you, do you want to be floundering on what to wear, what to say, how to get through it and whether they'll like you? Of course not. At the end of this course you will assume they'll like you with all the confidence of a rock star because you'll have the tools to summon what you need to pull it all off!
Stay tuned for more details on when the course starts...

$30.00 for 3 weeks
In May 2011
Lessons twice a week by email and Skype (video chat)

Kim Hornsby
Professional Singer/Entertainer
Recording Artist
Public Speaker
Stand up Comic
PHD in Confidence

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Charlie Sheen Strikes Out in Detroit

Apparently Charlie Sheen's road show is not worth the $75 a ticket and walking out after he insults your town is trending. That's so weird that people didn't like his 'show' because I really thought he'd really give them a wonderful 90 minutes. NOT!
What did 5,000 people expect from a man who is not a comedian, is under the influence of God Knows What and uses his two live-in gals to open the show with a lip lock? Did you hope he would care what you thought beyond the paycheck he will receive from your ticket purchase? Did you think in the two weeks he had to prepare, there would be more of an entertainment factor? That he might not insult you or your town, instead opting to insult everyone else but the things you are sensitive about?
According to reports, his show last night was a disaster and at the moment he got boo'ed, he insulted the audience (but not in a nice way) and when the lights went down to show a film clip, people took that opportunity to run for the exit signs. Charlie was insulted and left the stage for a 'break' never coming back to watch the rest of the audience's mass exodus.
When 500 die-hards remained, he came back on stage to thank them for staying. How's it feel Charlie? Trying to prostitute more than the goddesses must be humbling even to a guy perpetually high because life without it is not 'normal' for him.
My advice to Mr. Sheen today....either revamp your show to include some talent (and i bet a comedic writer could help you there) or cut your losses and go home to Hollywood with your tail between your legs, admit you've been a jerk and hide out for a year before your makeover comeback. Hollywood has formulas for this sort of thing. Britney's following a plan, making a comeback and even Lindsay is trying. What say you try too for the sake of those 4 precious children who get to call you Daddy.
Just sayin'.

Friday, April 1, 2011

American Idol- Naima and Thia Go Home

Last night the Rio movie promotional fiasco was embarassing, I'm sure to Will i am and Jamey Foxx as well as anyone who champions for their talent.  I have performed onstage with Jamie Foxx and know the enormity of his talent so why did he defer to dancers dressed like birds last night???Fantasia wasn't much better with her corn bread song. This might be just me but if you're going to sing a song about collard greens, don't wear a red sparkly evening gown.

Naima is benched now which means we won't see any more of her inventive performances and costumes. That's ok because they are all going to be benched in a few weeks until there is only one left so we have to start getting used to the departures of talented singers. Going home now means little because everyone left is top ten and still a part of the machine that will live on after the show. 'Going home' means you just can't live at the mansion, do all the Ford commercials, have all the fun. OH and perform every week in front of an adoring crowd and I tell you, a performer gets used to that really fast! When it's taken away, it's painful.
Anyways, enough about me and my problems.
Ensemble numbers were excellent this week. I loved the pairings and song choices. Lauren and Scotty did a country tune 'I told you so", Naima and Jacob sang "Solid like a rock" (Ashford and Simpson), Thia, Pia and Haley did Katy Perry and the remaining boys did a fantastic job of Band on the Run, each behind an instrument. Their harmonies were strong which made me wonder if there was some help backstage on mic.

America got the bottom three right with Thia, Naima and Paul. Two had to leave and the girls were on the chopping block instead of the handsome boy with the dazzling smile and sheepish look that says "I can't believe I made it this far with no talent!'
Lauren was safe but devastated as a female teen might be, having made adult friends who now must move to a different hotel room and not sing next week, Stefano barely crawled into the safe zone and James made a crack about how much fan mail he gets. Ah, there's that rock star attitude! he'll lose votes if he keeps saying stuff like that.

It was a good show but i'm hoping next week they promote a movie with a better song than Rio or find performers who aren't aghast at being onstage with a cast of hundreds (can you say Rio Flashmob?) who prevent them from doing their song. Will?
Here's my wish list for next Wednesday: Pia gets her groove on, if she even has one. Casey trims more beard, Haley gets new moves besides swinging her free arm and bending her knees like she's about to fall down, Jacob hits some high notes, James sings a ballad, Paul gets more weird, Lauren starts talking again, Stefano finds a song to showcase his talent and Scotty just keeps being Scotty.
As always, I'm humbled, you read this far.