Friday, September 29, 2006

Idol Album in the Works!

Our Philippine Idol Top 12 will battle it out this Saturday with an array of OPM songs, but did you know that the songs that they would sing tomorrow would be included in their upcoming album.

Yes, folks! Philippine Idol is not selective when it comes in producing their very first album of unforgettable OPM classics. All of them will have the chance to shine, not just four of them like in other substandard talent shows.

Remember to vote for your favorites after their Performance Night. As I would like to say: Don't vote once, don't vote twice, but a LOT of times.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

All-OPM for Top 12!

It's confirmed! The Top 12 Performance Night would be an all-OPM feast!

Here is a partial list of the songs that our Finalists would choose (help me guys about the original artists who sang some of the songs by leaving a comment here, thanks):
* Minsan Lang Kita Iibigin (I will love you only once)
* Araw-araw, Gabi-gabi (Everyday, everynight)
* 'Di Na Natuto by Gary Valenciano (You never learn)
* Nakapagtataka by Hajji Alejandro (Baffling)
* Himala by Rivermaya (Miracle)
* Tuwing Umuulan at Kapiling Ka by Basil Valdez (Whenever I'm with you through the rain)
* Iisa Pa Lamang (Only one)
* Hang On by Gary Valenciano
* Next in Line by After Image
* Pangako Sa 'Yo by Rey Valera

Even if I would know who would sing which song, I'd let you guys predict them instead. After all, revealing too much information kills the excitement.

Visit Philippine Idol Updates for everything latest on the best talent show in the Philippines...ever!

Yova Alonzo: Why Does It Hurt So Bad?

Here's a video clip of Yova's performance of Whitney Houston's "Why Does It Hurt So Bad" during the "Kakaibang Idol" Special of Philippine Idol. Special thanks to kazumi17 of youtube.

Yova Wins Kakaibang Idol! Other Issues Rose!

Congratulations to Kenneth Paul "Yova" Alonzo for winning "Kakaibang Idol" (A Different Kind of Idol) last Sunday. That's the power of being the last person to perform, but nonetheless Yova's performance was a standout.

Also standouts were performances of Shane Romulo, Jhona Sison, and Lalaine Enriquez. During the results show, the seven candidates for Kakaibang Idol sang "We are the World" and was joined by some of fellow Gold Passers who served as chorus. Boy, Jhona can really hit the high notes. (Makes me wish that she and Yova become part of Top 24; oh well, it's the judges' decision).

Several issues were raised after the results show and I would like to address them one by one:

* Although Leonard Ocampo, the "lucky charms" guy, was among the three contestant that were called, Ryan A did not say whether they were actually the Top 3. For all we know, the "actual" Top 3 could have been different, but we would never know (until a few weeks or so).

* I wonder what Yova received aside from a glass trophy. Was there an unnannounced cash prize? (Idol franchises are not allowed to mention money, that is why the P1 million prize for the winner is never announced) And what upcoming projects offered to Yova? Let's hope it would become a success.

* The Philippine Idol judges, especially Francis and Mamita, should learn a thing or two from Arnell Ignacio and Tuesday Vargas. These singers/ comedians have always something new whenever they comment, not the usual one-word and "I like your performance" comments we are trying to get used to. Actually, Pinoy Exchange has a poll on its Philippine Idol poll whether Arnell and Tuesday should replace Francis and Mamita. So far, the "yes" are leading. But, reality bites, Francis and Mamita are there for the whole duration of the show (as well as its upcoming seasons), so we could all hope that they critique contestants better because if they don't, the viewers would not listen to them at all.

* There seems to be a rift between Maureen and Jelli. Don't you just feel the tension between them whenever they answer about the issue about "beauty versus talent"?

MAU: May mga nakapasok na ganda lang ang puhunan...
JELLI: I've paid my way through college because of singing. Hindi naman siguro ganda lang ang dahilan kung bakit may trabaho ako.

* Is Gian's relationship with Aiza Marquez on the rocks? We have received reports that a couple who looked like Gian and Ira were spotted dining at Pizza Hut Bistro at Gateway Mall during the height of Philippine Idol's semi-finals. Maybe it was just a friendly date.

* And it seemed that Ira has become the darling among the guys of Philippine Idol. Not only was Gian seemed to be interested at her, but Ken as well. He even "begged" Gian during the live chit-chat at the Kakaibang Idol results show to just give Ira to him.

Hmmm...This show is getting more interesting, and I can't wait for the Top 12 Eliminations this Saturday. There were conflicting reports as to what the theme is: it could be either all-OPM, or "Songs that you'd like to dedicate to someone," or even a combination of both.

N. B.: Philippine Idol Updates has a new e-mail address.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

What's In Store for the Eliminated Contestants?

Ever wonder what happened to some of the eliminated contestants?

JOSEPH ASTOR was offered to try his luck in showbusiness. I think he should accept the offer before his "popularity" dwindles.

GAIL BLANCO is currently performing at Chef and Brewer in Greenbelt.

YNAH PANGAN accepted several international bookings.

SUEY MEDINA was offered to try newscasting. I'm not going to tell at which network though.

IRA MARASIGAN was offered to sing front-act for the upcoming VonTrap Children Concert. Although it is unsure whether she accepted the offer, it is definite that she would perform at the Aawitan Kita Live Concert this October.

TING OTERO was offered to sing in Singapore but she turned it down since the job is only temporary compared to her current work as a medical representative in Davao where she is now.

Always remember to visit Philippine Idol Updates for the latest on everything Philippine Idol.

Kakaibang Idols!

My apologies for the delay of updates. My offline life has become busier than usual, aside from the fact that my dial-up connection was down...again.

Philippine Idol created a special presentation for this weekend just to give the Final 12 their much-deserved rest. "Kakaibang Idol" features seven of the most memorable auditioneers of this season. Some were rejected, others received Gold Passes, and one even made it to the Top 40.

And since this is a special presentation, the contestants deserve a special set of judges: comedians Ethel Booba, Arnel Ignacio, and Tuesday Vargas.

Anime Girl Jhonalene Sison was first to perform. If is always not easy to sing first in the competition and it reflected in her rendition of the Voltes V theme. Even so, she gave out her best to which she received a thunderous applause. Her performance, like in most proceeding presentations, have back-up dancers.

When the judges commented on Jhona's costume, it seemed that she did not take it well enough. The smile from her face was erased. But overall, we love the performance.

If you want Jhona to win, text JHONA to 2339 until 8:30 p.m. tonight.

Next up is John Jerico "Jeck" Perrey, the guy who taught the judges (and Ryan A. as well) to dance the hula. I thought his performance would be serious all throughout with his rendition of "Broken Vow." Boy, I was so wrong. During instrumental, the music suddenly became Hawaiian and the dancers stripped off his coat to reveal a hula shirt complete with a lei hanging on his neck. Jeck and his dancers hula'd their way to the judges' delight.

If you liked Jeck's hula, text JECK to 2339 until 8:30 p.m. tonight.

The girl who sang "Babae Po Ako" during auditions was third to perform. Lalaine Enriquez entertained the audience with a performance that was at par with Tuesday's original rendition, to which she congratulated Lalaine. Arnel told her that the theater community would definitely welcome her.

If you think Lalaine is the one, text LALAINE to 2339 untl 8:30 p.m. tonight.

After the break, we saw Leonard Ocampo do a sing-and-dance performance of his audition piece "Sumayaw Sumunod," of course with more trenchcoat-wearing dancers. If you may remember, he considered his trenchcoat (as well as the Piglett doll hanging with it) his lucky charm.

Do you think Leonard's luck is on his side, text LEONARD to 2339 until 8:30 p.m. tonight.

Shane Romulo's performance of "Huwag Mo Akong Ligawan (Kuya Huwag Po)" was the most hilarious in my opinion. She was dressed as a maid, with musical director Mel Villena acting as her "Kuya." We all know that the song is funny, but her performance was even funnier. How would you sing while scrubbing floors and ironing clothes?

She even shared a joke with the audience (with permission from MTRCB Chairwoman Laguardia, who was present at the Philippine Idol Stage) that "kung malaki ang 'su,' malaki ang 'pe.'" Kung malaki ang sugat, malaki ang peklat.

If your bones got tickled by Shane, text SHANE to 2339 until 8:30 p.m. tonight.

Oh no! It's the Mystica guy! Winjohn Dacay totally shocked the judges during his audition with his splits while singing "Joyful Joyful." Yesterday he was at it again, but his splits were lesser because he suffered an injury while doing a showdown with the original Mystica at I Love Philippine Idol.

If you like the splits, text JOHN to 2339 until 8:30 p.m. tonight.

Finally, the diva had arrived! Yova Alonzo was last to perform with his rendition of Whitney Houston's "Why Does It Hurt So Bad." Pitch problems aside, I think he carried it superbly. Even the judges agreed with me.

If you think Yova should have been in the Top 24, text YOVA to 2339 until 8:30 p.m. tonight.

The show ended with a medley of performances. Pilita Corrales, with Ryan C on the piano, sang "Thank You for the Music," while Francis M and the rest of the Top 12 performed The Dawn's "Salamat." And, as usual, Miguel was off-key and Ken is still sick. At least Jelli improved a bit.

N. B.: The theme for the Top 12 Performance Night would be all-OPM.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Join the Growing PI Online Community!

A lot of forums and message boards have arised after the introduction of Philippine Idol and we advise you to visit them to make new like-minded online friends. Here are some of the forums that Philippine Idol Updates recommend.

Pinoy Exchange
* The country's largest online community with over 180,000 members.
* Not just a forum, but a community of people with different interests from Idol fans to movie buffs to philosophers to sports nut and even wiccans.
* Known for having the most opinionated members. Several TV networks read the TV program threads for suggestions from their viewers.
* The Philippine Idol thread has an assortment of members from Idol fanatics to even relatives of certain finalists.

* Since opinions flow freely in PEX, debates and arguments sometimes get ugly (especially at the Local Movies and TV section).
* Use of avatar is limited to its old members (from 1999 to 2002).
* Use of signature is not allowed.

Official Philippine Idol Forum
* Being an official forum, several ABC staffers read some of the comments for their input about the show.
* Very, very active
* Use of avatars and signatures allowed.

* Mods are not strict at all, so personal arguments tend to flow freely.

Philippine-Idol Forums
* The site itself (particularly the chatbox) is very active.

* Ironically, the forum is not much active.
* The site is often mistaken as the official site because of the title's similarity to Philippine Idol.
* Some spam/ ad messages spotted.

The Digital Pinoy
* Not only you could post messages on their forums, but you could also download OPMs for free (they use DPhp as currency, which accumulate as you post in the forum). Also available in Linkshare are the downloads (mp3s and some videos) for Philippine Idol.
* Use of avatar and signature is allowed.
* Interact with Filipinos all over the world.
* Users are never banned, just sanctioned.

* Philippine Idol thread (found at the Moves and TV section) is a little active, since most of its members are into computer gaming.
* A ridiculous thread rating (what is it for anyway?)

Idol Media Files
* A community site featuring downloads (mp3s, videos, photos) from several Idol programs.
* Answer daily poll questions.

* Messaging is all related to the downloads, not much argument or debate about the shows.
* An forum on everything Idol! Get to know what is happening at other Idol franchises worldwide.
* Download a variety of Idol-related video clips and mp3s provided by its members.
* The most international forum in the list.
* Use of avatar and signature allowed. You can even ask to have a custom-made signature.

* The ads and contextual links can be annoying at first.

Of course, drop by Philippine Idol Updates for the latest in everything Philippine Idol!

Mau's Statement: Frustration or Sarcasm?

"Ano ka ba? Hindi ito singing contest...pagandahan. Joke!"

During the Results Show of the Wildcard Round, only one slot remained in contention after Ken, Steph, and Gian, were all became eligible for the Top 12.

Ryan A called Suey and Mau, whose fates were not yet known. Suey tried to break the tension

SUEY: Bakit niyo ako pinatabi kay Mau?

MAU: Kasi maganda ka.

SUEY: Eh Idol kita eh.

Mau replied with probably the most controversial quote yet in Philippine Idol.

It received a thunderous applause and laughter, especially from Mr. C who had been so visibly frustrated with the results of the Top 12.

A lot of debate and argument have been going on in different online forums regarding Mau's statement. Some say it was a way of outbursting her frustration over the voting process, while others say that it is a sign of arrogance.

How about our PIU readers? What do you think about this issue?

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Get Philippine Idol updates directly in your email!

Get word of the latest Philippine Idol updates delivered directly to your email!

Join the Philippine Idol Updates mailing list - joining is absolutely free - and receive word when we've posted new blog entries, polls, or other updates on our blog!

Know when the latest Philippine Idol videos are posted on YouTube, get information on your favorite Philippine Idol finalists, and maybe get a chance to join a Philippine Idol contest or two!

Joining the Philippine Idol Updates mailing list is wonderfully easy. Just send a blank email to philippineidolupdates-subscribe at yahoogroups dot com. It's that simple! You'll get a confirmation email and you can even introduce yourself to the growing community here at Philippine Idol Updates!

So what are you waiting for? Sali na sa Philippine Idol Updates, kasi Idol maging iba!

Philippine Idol Kakaibang Idol teaser

This is the teaser for the Philippine Idol Kakaibang Idol show.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Here is your Top 12

Last night's results show gave us the final four Philippine Idol finalists: Gian, Ken, Stef, and Mau.

Here are your Top 12 Philippine Idol finalists!













Saturday, September 16, 2006

Philippine Idol Wildcard Recaps

I want to apologize to Stef Lazaro and blame Mini Shabu-Shabu. I got home ten minutes past nine and missed Stef Lazaro’s live performance of Total Eclipse of the Heart. Ryan Cayabyab says she raised the bar, so it must’ve been better than Home.

Gian Magdangal.
Gians hopes prayer and luck are on his side. He’s singing Lately by Stevie Wonder. He’s seated, he’s standing, and he’s looking at the camera. His voice is strong, and he’s comfortable with the song, so that’s a good thing, I suppose. He trips over so slightly over a few notes – obviously his range isn’t that good – but it’s a delivery that is otherwise winning.
Francis: Born to do this. You’re looking at someone who was born to be Philippine Idol.
Pilita: I’m used to seeing him dance. He can do it all – and he’s good-looking, too.
Ryan: You are the best overall male performer in this competition. You have to be in the Final 12.

Ting Otero.
Ting is a little miffed by the judges’ earlier comments that few talent came from Davao. She’s thankful, and encourages Davaoeños to vote for her. She’s singing Sana’y Maghintay ang Walang Hanggan, which I am unfamiliar with, and after the first few bars, I conclude it doesn’t sound like a competition piece good enough for Philippine Idol. Ting’s warm and soothing voice is tentative. It looks like her nerves are getting to her and I’m sorry, Ting, but it isn’t looking good for you. Huh, a break before the comments?
Francis: I’ve always rooted for Ting. There’s something about Ting, and her voice, the way she sings. They chose the songs, and the song didn’t connect.
Pilita is defensive about her comments. “Most of the good talent in Davao are in Manila or in Cebu.” She didn’t comment on Ting at all.
Ryan: All the musicians like you. This particular performance doesn’t mean you’re a good talent, but your particular interpretation didn’t work because this song calls for lyricism. You were choppy. It needs haplos.

She sure is confident. ;)

Onyx Culala.
Onyx is given a second chance, and he cries in his video. He’s singing Wildflower - the version I know is Color Me Badd’s, and it seems that this performance is based on that – and it’s miles ahead of his last performance, but this, like Ting’s, is a problematic song choice. Onyx has a good voice, I’ll give him that, but I don’t think people connect to him. Oi vey.
Francis: Interesting.
Pilita: I’m surprised. He has improved from the first time. Fantastic. Very good.
Ryan: I agree with Mamita. I didn’t expect you to sing good tonight but it was a very big improvement. Baka maiwanan ka ng trend.

Ira Marasigan.
Some people think she’s sosyalera, but she thinks it’s a way and means for people to find someone worth idolizing, not because she has sikat parents, but simply because she has what it takes to be Philippine Idol. She’s singing In My Life by Patti Austin. Ick, blue eyeshadow. Her voice is strong and jazzy, but I personally think the version she’s picked is a little too big for her. Gasp! She gets reverb! The others didn’t get that! Oh dear, Ira, I’m a little concerned…
Francis: Skill is skill, and Ira has it. I would also like to comment that you look different. Very beautiful. Utot mo.
Pilita: Ira is always very classy, she’s very talented. I think the song is medyo kulang. Her movement was sexy – like me – but she’s got everything.
Ryan: Two things: nothing wrong with good education and intelligence. We need people like you in the industry. But sometimes, when you’re very well-educated and classy, the warmth disappears. You need more spontaneity and warmth, but I wish you were in the Top 12.

Joseph Astor.
Joseph is really relying on Philippine Idol to bring his family out of poverty. He’s singing Maria Maria by Santana. This should be interesting. His diction’s a little off - you can’t blame him, given his background – but he does bring a little kind of street cred into the song. Eeh, the Sexbomb dance. He kisses Mamita’s hand. Save for a few bum notes when he launches into a very weak falsetto, it’s not a bad choice of song – it’ll make him stand out.
Francis: Joseph, if you want to save your family, join Laban o Bawi. The energy was good, we have a contender right here.
Pilita: Joseph can be a Philippine Idol because he’s a ready idol for females and gays. Napakamacho niya.
Ryan: Joseph, ang hirap magtrabaho, no? Because of that, we can see your sincerity, you’re really trying to perform. I’ll remind the people listening that you have a good voice.

Ken Dingle.
Ken left his job to do Philippine Idol - that’s sacrifice for him, and he’s the only one in his family who’s here in Manila. He’s singing A House is Not a Home - ooh, not a good choice, top of mind. His voice is high, but it doesn’t seem to have any support. He’s pitchy through the song – and it seems like amateur night at the Roxy – and the last few bars are really agony. Sorry, Ken, but unless you pull off a Miguel Mendoza, thanks for your time.
Francis: I could feel his sincerity, but there were sharp notes in the end part. I felt that it was too serious, a little too heavy.
Pilita: It’s a beautiful song with beautiful lyrics. He sang it from the soul and from the heart. It’s up to him to convince the others to vote for him.
Ryan: Congratulations, Ken, for giving a good fight. I know for a fact that it’s obvious you’re very sick, it shows in the way you sing. It wasn’t good at all.

Ramirr Grepo.
Ramirr is inspired by his fiancée, Faye, and is singing I Don’t Wanna Miss a Thing. Steven Tyler’s shriekfest, the one Diane Warren song I don’t like. Oh Lord. Why do I feel like I’m still in the girlie bar that Ramirr transported me to two weeks ago? Eeek, he’s singing to Faye, and it’s just so S.O.P. Ohmigosh, I’m getting shivers up and down my spine, and not in the good way.
Francis: Ramirr is my chicken. We know you can do those songs – you were in your comfort zone. I wanted to hear something different. Your voice was stronger then.
Pilita: He sang this song for this beautiful girl that is here. What if he makes it into the 12? There will be a lot of beautiful women who will like him – what do we do then? I’ll stop saying “I love you.” You are still one of my favorites.
Ryan: This time I will agree with Francis. This competition is not ‘pataasan ng nota.’ You were phenomenal and the magic disappeared because you did the same thing.

Suey Medina.
Suey is doing this for her mother, who died of breast cancer. She’s singing Best of My Love, a classic show band tune considering she’s probably done it a thousand times before. Ohmigosh, Ramirr can’t dance. She’s pitchy, though, and while I really think Suey is beautiful, her voice just doesn’t carry through, oi vey. I want to like her, I really do, but I don’t.
Francis: I would pay tickets to watch this lady. Beautiful.
Pilita: Suey said earlier everyone in Marawi City is all watching, but Mr. Cojuangco is here. When are we going to have Channel 5 everywhere. Very good, Suey, I enjoyed it.
Ryan: Suey, I see a dozen more bandstand girls sing that better than you. None of those bandstand girls are standing in front because they don’t have what you have – you’re nice to watch. I hope you make it.

Mau Marcelo.
Mau did this for her mom, who raised her after her father left her. She’s got the feather boa and the slinky gown. Cathy likes her outfit; I can’t stand it. She chooses Til My Heartaches End, and, naturally, knocks it out of the ballpark, although there seemed to be a lack of power. She hits the right notes almost flawlessly, although I realize her range isn’t as wide as I thought it was.
Francis: I am calling on the executives of Sony-BMG, give her an album, since the texters don’t listen to us anyway.
Pilita: Natutuwa ako because I have seen her become more elegant. Mau, what can I say? You’re perfect.
Ryan: World-class. That’s all.

Ryan A. asks if they did better.
Francis: Some were invincible, but the chinks in their armor showed.
Pilita: It seemed like some were very serious and they felt this is the last time. If I don’t make it today, they can’t make it. They all tried their best.
Ryan: Oh yeah, it improved. All did, except for a couple. Sana marami kaming makikitang second, third, fourth times, lalong gumagaling. That’s the magic.

For some reason, we're unsatisfied by these performances. They were generally safe, for the most part, and, ugh, all the tears. Bordering on emotional blackmail. C'mon ABC-5, we're gonna vote for them because they're good, not because your editing brings about sympathy votes.

Anyway, based on these performances, these are our predictions:
Mau Marcelo. In a field of five, Mau's song choice was strategic and classy. She won't slip through the cracks this time.
Ira Marasigan. In a tight fight between her and Ting, we pick Ira as a strategic choice for a wide fan base with significant text-voting power.
Gian Magdangal. Gian is such a pimped horse that we can't imagine a Top 12 without him. His Lately was not the best version in the world, but it was more than sufficient.
Joseph Astor. In deciding between him and Ramirr, we opted for his stronger vocal and the fact that now that Pilita's let the cat out of the bag, people are going to see him as a poor pretty boy who could use the break.

As it is, though, the past few episodes have shown that Philippine Idol tends to defy logic, so what do we know anyway?

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Here is a teaser for the Philippine Idol Wildcard night this coming Saturday.

Here's a video for Heart Evangelista's I Love Philippine Idol.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Who deserved a slot in the Wildcard round?

After yesterday's Philippine Idol results show, where Philippine Idol semifinalists Pow Chavez, Apple Chiu, Arms Cruz, Jeli Mateo, Mig Mendoza, Jan Nieto, Reymond Sajor, and Drae Ybanez became the first eight into the round of 12 finals,

By tonight, we'll find out who will get one of ten slots available.

Spoilers in our comment boxes show an unconfirmed list:

Girls wildcards - Mau, Suey, Ting, Ira and Stef - eliminated are Gail, Ynah, and EJ
Boys wildcards - Gian, Ken, Onyx, Joseph and Ramirr - eliminated are Freddie, Christian and Robert

That's unconfirmed, though, folks, so don't get your knickers in a twist.

Since our poll is weekly, though, here's the question for all y'all to vote on or talk about in the Comments boxes: Who do you think deserved a slot in the wildcard round?

Insider Report: Girls' Perfomance Night

Philippine Idol Updates is pleased to present to you a report from one of our contributors who have watched the Girls' Live Performance last Saturday and yesterday's Results Show. You may now take the floor:

Hello everyone! I got the one-of-a-kind opportunity to watch the Girls' Semi-Finals last Saturday at SM Megamall Cinema 3 (which is now being called "Philippine Idol Theater"). I am telling you now, it's much...much better to watch Philippine Idol live.

The live show is actually on a "by invitation" basis. I got my ticket from a colleague who works at ABC-5. However, you can watch the show live (and free of charge) even without a ticket! You can either volunteer as a supporter for a certain contestant (make sure you make banners of support for you favorite Idol) or wait until all the ticket holders get in (wherein you occupy the remaining vacant seats and certain spaces such as the stairs).

The live event began with a pep rally. The speaker named Joseph tried her best (yeah, you got that right; Joseph is a "she") to motivate the crowd. She reminded everyone not to appalud at the beginning of the show, only to break out and clap to your heart's desire eventime the jingle of Philippine Idol is being played.

The audience can tell that host Ryan Agoncillo was very nervous before the show. He called on to the audience to applaud. "Pampatanggal nerbyos," he said.

Here are other notable off-cam moments during the Girls' Performance Night:

* Before the show, an audience shouted, "I love you, Ryan!" In jest, Ryan answered, "I love you, too!" Then the audience shouted, "Ryan Cayabyab!" The people in the cinema were laughing and applauding on that joke.

* Ting Otero actually tripped on stage during the roll call of the female finalists. Her right shoe simply slipped off her feet, and it took a while before she put it back on.

* At first I thought Erika's fans were not that many, not until a lot of people were wearing yellow t-shirts with "Go EJ!" on it.

* Aside from Erika, Apple also has a huge amount of banner-carrying supporters. So many, some were even at the balcony. So is Pow's team of supporters, shouting "Pow power!"

* Meanwhile, Armarie had the fewest supporters that night. I guess a lot of her relatives from Zamboanga were yet to arrive.

* A lot of Gold Passers were watching the show, the most prominent ones were John Perrey (the guys who taught the hula dance) and Jaime Barcelon (the former Julliard scholar, who looked a litle bit chubbier, and a little bit cuter, that night).

* Jeffrey Santos, the guy who shocked Pilita with his trumpet playing, was spotted wearing a purple gown as part of his I *Heart* Philippine Idol segment. By the way, his hair is really natural curls.

* During Pow's performance of "Ikaw Laman," someone was peeking through the wing curtains. It ws Jelli! Hmmm... I wonder why.

Tune in tomorrow for more insider info during the Results Show.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Philippine Idol results: First Final 4 from the girls

The women start by singing Larger Than Life.

We’re reminded about last night’s performances in their order, as well as some judges’ comments - Gail Blanco, Ting Otero, Ynah Pangan, Apple Chiu, Jeli Mateo, Ira Marasigan, Pow Chavez, Stef Lazaro, Mau Marcelo, EJ Bautista, Suey Medina, and Arms Cruz – then we’re told that Jasmine Trias is going to sing for us.

Oh, joy. *roll eyes* We get an Idol also-ran after the break. Good job, ABC-5 – boost those ratings!

Jasmine sings Inseparable, and I’m pleasantly surprised. Her voice is much stronger this time, a lot less scoopy with its pitches, and a lot less nasal. She lets a little loose but her voice wavers near the high notes. She certainly has improved as far as performance is concerned. Good job, Jazz. She gives a lovely little go-go speech.

We’re introduced to Mel Villena and the Idol band, and it’s his birthday! Hahaha. Happy birthday, you! Then the judges – Francis Magalona, Pilita Corrales, and Ryan Cayabyab.

Ryan tells us Kris Aquino votes for one candidate 80 times. We’re not told who, though. I think it’s Ira because of the Ateneo connection. My wife thinks it’s Pow because ‘she was good, she’s endearing and because I think she gets people excited and wanting to text for her.’ Well, we’ll never know.

We review the judges’ comments again. Ynah, Jeli, Stef. Pow gets cheers. He calls Ynah, Arms, Jeli, Apple, Mau, Pau. These are the top six placers! Wow.

Ynah Pangan is asked to step forward, then Arms Cruz. Arms made it! That’s one for our predictions! :D Yehey!

Jeli Mateo is made to step forward, but she’s made to wait until after the wait. Break. She’s asked if she’s going back to singing. She doesn't have to wait. She makes it. Okay - great looks do pay off.

Apple Chiu is going to the second round. Ooooh. I'm glad, because I liked her voice but not her song choice. I'm sure she'll do better in the Final 12.

Pow Chavez and Mau Marcelo are left onstage. Both cried. Both were praised by the judges. Francis M thinks the people voted for Pow. Pilita chooses Pow too. Ryan chooses Pow too. Mau says it’s up to God. Pow says thanks for the right to sing for you. The people choose Pow Chavez!

The top four guys - Drae Ybanez, Miguel Mendoza, Jan Nieto, and Reymond Sajor – join the top four girls – Pow Chavez, Apple Chiu, Arms Cruz, and Jeli Mateo. Those are your top 8.

Next week, Wildcard round, with only five girls and five boys singing. The names will be announced tomorrow night.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Philippine Idol Round of 12 Girls Recap

Welcome to Philippine Idol, where the sound is much better and Pilita Corrales should be jailed for all that shameless flirting with Ryan Agoncillo.

Mrs. Robinson jokes aside, we're reminded about last week, when Drae Ybanez, Miguel Mendoza, Reymond Sajor, and Jan Nieto became the first finalists into the Top 12.

Oh, look, Ryan's wearing a funny microphone on his head. "Hello, Easycall, may I take your message?" It's so call-center, I swear.

Anyway, we’re introduced to the semifinalists, then the judges. Ryan asks about the other qualities that make a Philippine Idol.

Francis: Kahit sino diya, boundary iyan. Looking for someone to rise to the occasion, shift gear. Ito na.
Mamita: I like Francis because usually when there is a pretty girl, pero hindi na ngayon. For me, they’re all standouts. Before saying anything, I want to listen to them tonight.
Ryan: Sing as best you can. We’re supposed to guide you, critique your performance. Don’t take it personally. Voters, kahit minsan, makinig din kayo.

Excuse me. I thought you liked last week’s four placers. Tonight, you pip the selection. Ano ba talaga? Whatever. The one male Philippine Idol semifinalist I actually sent votes for made it; happy na ako, belat.

The first singer up is Gail Blanco. We’re told that she wrote a song inspired by the experience. She sings What’s Love Got to Do With It. On the bright side, she puts a lot of heart into it, but doesn’t seem to connect with the audience. Voice-wise, she’s a little breathy, but it’s all right.
Francis: hard to be the first, I found it okay.
Pilita: Gail can join the Bb. Pilipinas. She’s so beautiful. I don’t like the song, but I like the way you did it.
Ryan: That song was difficult, and we know how the original singer did it. When you choose a song, you ride on it, or it eats you up. Sadly, it ate you up.

She thanks them in Cebuano, and appeals to the regional vote. Smart move.

Ting, Ynah and Apple are next. Break.

Sige na, sige na, sige na, sige na! Hahaha. Lucky backup girls.

Ting Otero didn’t pass the first fast-track, but she made it the second time around. She chooses Come in From the Rain by Diana Ross, so she’s hoping to give it a different turn and make it her own. She reminds me of CeCe Peniston (remember her?). My wife doesn’t like her tight outfit, and thinks it’s making singing hard for her. Her version isn’t half bad, but the backup music is waaaaay too loud, and she looks at the camera a lot, which is good. Her voice is strong, and, save for a few bum notes, especially near the end, she ends decently.

"A good ting na bumalik ka." God, Ryan, quit the puns.
Francis: Papirmahin na ng kontrata iyan. Album.
Pilita: Bisaya ka, Day? Ang mga Bisaya, iba talaga, katulad ko.
Ryan: I like your voice, Ting. One thing I can say: we’re looking for an Idol – you need a makeover to make yourself look younger. Your voice is good.

Ynah Pangan is up next. She feels like she was beheaded when she made it into a finals’ competition. She chooses Halik, the first OPM song up, and her voice is powerful enough to capture the Aegis feel and sound. She looks great, although I don’t care for her outfit, and I feel like I’m in a cheap girlie bar. She’s going for the rocker chick feel, and, well, I’m sure the crowd’ll eat this one up.

Francis: Courageous effort, when everyone sings a pop song, Ynah sings this local song. Tuwang-tuwa ako.
Pilita: I can assure you Kuya Germs did not teach her to sing. I like the choice of song. Good luck.
Ryan flirts cheap, going vintage.
Ryan: Big gamble, but you won it.

Apple Chiu is an interior designer from Cebu. She sings Rhythm of the Street by Patti Austin. She starts from the audience and works her way up to the stage. Her voice is certainly smoky, and she definitely works her way into the song. She’s gyrating all over the stage, but the song is simply forgettable, and that’s not going to work.

Francis: I don’t think it’s the song that you should perform kapag labanan, but Apple doesn’t hold a song, parang alam na alam niya. Kinareer niya.
Pilita: Huwag mo akong tarantaduhin (to Francis). I think you’re very sexy. I like your performance too.
Ryan: Meron si Apple buong buo yung voice, pero hindi ko ma-take yung kanta. I don’t like ganong klaseng kanta because what more can you do with it?

Jeli and Ira are up. Break.

Jeli is gorgeous, looking like Miriam Quiambao from certain angles. She says she wants the Idol title more than she needs it, and sings Bridges. Her voice is pretty, but with little support underneath it, she’s extremely pitchy. I can’t understand her words, and that’s never good. Ooh, strategic move, she sings in Filipino – eek, flat notes – that I suppose may win a couple of votes. Ugh, what was that last note?

Francis: English, Portuguese, Tagalog. It’s a gamble, I hope the voters catch on.
Pilita: You don’t fit with Ryan. (Crazy flirt.) I enjoyed all the songs she’s sung from the beginning. This song, she took a gamble, but I still liked your performance.
Ryan: You know what’s going for you? You’re tall, you’re beautiful, expressive voice, you gotta work on your songs. You have pitch problems, dapat binaba ng konti, di mo na siya maabot.

Text typo! Text Jelli to 2339, but we’re supposed to text Jeli.
Ira Marasigan, daughter of Irma Adlawan, is up next. She sings Natalie Cole’s vocally challenging Mr. Melody, and she vamps it up like anything. She scats, she hits the high notes, not all of them. Confidence-wise, best of the night, but she was flat near the end. Focused a lot on performance, her face wasn’t too expressive.
Francis: The thing that strikes me about Ira, may kultura tong batang to. You can’t argue with the energy.
Pilita: She’s blossomed – that’s what PI does to you. I hope you make it.
Ryan: I’m so happy you’re here, nagkaroon ng class. You’re very musical, one thing you do very well, ang galing mong maglakad.

She’s contagious, but I hope the energy is contagious and you’ll vote for me. Eh. Next are Stef, Pow, and Mau.

Another interior designer who came with a friend to audition, but she was chosen (just like Ira, who came with her Mom). She’s singing Ikaw Lamang, a brave choice. Wow. She reminds my wife of Dessa, and her voice is pure and lovely. Save for a few bum notes we can count on one hand, Pow has shown herself a frontrunner.
Francis: Alam mo itong si Pow, manloloko ito. Pa-hiphop pero mahusay na mangaawit. Ang gandang boses, kelan ka magpapalda? She says sorry na lang po. That’s truth to oneself.
Pilita: I asked her what she’d wear. She and Ryan are wearing the same shoes. Whatever you wear, whatever you say, I love you, Pow!
Ryan: Your plus factor: your voice is full of emotion, so you don’t need a gimmick, sing alone, and I’m sure if people will vote correctly, you’ll make it into the final four.

Stef Lazaro chose Home by Diana Ross because for a large part of her life, she felt she didn’t belong anywhere, growing up in Australia. Her voice is good, and her low notes are decent enough. Her camera eye contact is good, and I can tell she’s used to performing live, even if my wife finds it boring. Music waaaay too loud, and that last note… meh.
Francis: I think in spite of the fact that you came here from Australia, you did good.
Pilita: I’ve seen Stef and she can actually sing anything. Listening to Home, I wanted to see her do better. I hope everyone votes for you.
Ryan: To sing a national competition song, we’ve heard that song a hundred times. Nothing new.

Mau Marcelo set aside her petition to move abroad to sing here. She’s singing Sweet Love, and she hits those low notes very well. Her outfit hides a lot of her pounds, and her vocal is more than decent, good adlibs and all. Her look is very different.
Francis: Kung kantahan lang, you deserve to be in the Top 4. Fantasia taob.
Pilita: Maureen, I really liked the way you changed. Sexy ka na ngayon. Definitely, I like you very much.
Ryan: Performance mo, I do not understand why you are not yet an international recording artist. He stands up for her, a strategic decision to get people to vote for her. She breaks into tears.

EJ and Suey next. Break.

EJ is up next. The Philippine Idol Updates poll frontrunner is singing Paalam Na. She doesn’t bring anything new to the Rachel Alejandro song, though, and although she’s dressed prettily in yellow, the passion and emotion of the original doesn’t communicate well. Eeek! What happened to that one note when the band stopped? Oh dear…
Francis: Malinis ang pagkaka-interpret. (Hello? Are you deaf? It’s supposed to be EJ.)
Pilita: She’d always been in tune, in the right key.
Ryan: Just good enough. That’s all. Nothing exciting, nothing spectacular.

Asked for a comment, she sings the local Philippine Idol jingle. Ah, well, people will have their gimmicks.

Suey says she was scared when she first tried out. She sings Almost Over You by Sheena Easton, and she gets away with a passable rendition, pitchy in parts, but she belts out in the appropriate sections, but in the words of my wife, ‘it’s just too much.’ She tried to do too much, tsk tsk tsk.
Francis: Beautiful. Suey, you killed it.
Pilita: Me? I’ll ask you – do you like her? Suey, very good.
Ryan: I watched you yesterday and even this morning. I was ready to diss you, but you did something. Your performance was much better today than yesterday. Congratulations.

What is Arms wearing? Things hanging from her bustier. She’s singing Superwoman by Karyn White, and her strong vocal carries it well. Vocally, it’s very good, and her ending is a wee bit dramatic but she pulls it together.
Francis: One of the best performances tonight.
Pilita: It’s strange that this is the first time she wasn’t crying. You are my superwoman tonight.
Ryan: Very solid performance, very professional. I hope you make it.

Overall, I'm not that impressed with the ladies, but they certainly did do better than the gentlemen. It's your call on who to vote for, Philippines, but based on performance alone, our predictions hinge on the following:

Pow Chavez. This girl never fails to amaze week after week. Her voice was pure, and her being-true-to-herself is refreshing. If the girl won't wear a skirt, don't make her wear a skirt! Ano ba?

Maureen Marcelo: Mau looked really classy, and delivered a powerhouse performance. Kudos.

Ira Marasigan: Song was relatively forgettable, but she did deliver the goods in a truly stylish, elegant way. She should go through to keep some class in the show.

Arms Cruz: It was a consistent, solid performance by the Zamboanguena.

Dark horses looming in the distance: Ynah Pangan (what do we know? What didn't work for Ramirr Grepo may work for her) or Suey Medina (good song, meh performance). Let's find out tomorrow.

WHO DID YOU GUYS VOTE FOR? Post it in the comments!

Friday, September 08, 2006

Philippine Idol teasers for Round of 12 Girls tomorrow

Here are the teasers for the Philippine Idol round of 12 girls this Saturday, September 9.

Featuring EJ Bautista, Gail Blanco, and Pow Chavez

Featuring Suey Medina, Arms Cruz, and Stef Lazaro

Featuring Ynah Pangan, Apple Chiu, and Jelli Mateo

Featuring Mau Marcelo, Ira Marasigan, and Tin Otero

Philippine Idol Updates' Day-before Analysis

With two days to go before the broadcast of the round of 12 female on Philippine Idol, we at Philippine Idol Updates admit that even fansites like us can get our information in a loop, so while we try to get our bearings, let's confirm those song lists once again (with correct names, so you'll know what to text to 2339 come Saturday):

1. Philippine Idol semifinalist Ira Marasigan - Mr. Melody
2. Philippine Idol semifinalist Jeli Mateo - Bridges
3. Philippine Idol semifinalist Stef Lazaro - Home
4. Philippine Idol semifinalist Mau Marcelo - Sweet Love
5. Philippine Idol semifinalist Arms Cruz - Superwoman
6. Philippine Idol semifinalist Suey Medina - Almost Over You
7. Philippine Idol semifinalist Apple Chiu- Rhythm of the Street
8. Philippine Idol semifinalist EJ Bautista - Paalam Na
9. Philippine Idol semifinalist Ynah Pangan - Halik
10. Philippine Idol semifinalist Pow Chavez - Ikaw Lamang
11. Philippine Idol semifinalist Tin Otero - Come In From the Rain
12. Philippine Idol semifinalist Gail Blanco - What’s Love Got to Do With It

Our Predictions on Paper (POP, predictions made on song choice):
With the mixup over Suey's and Cherry's songs, and taking into account new information on SMS and landline voting, we are going to revamp our choices as follows:

We predict, on paper, a final four finish for the following:
Gail Blanco (What's Love Got to Do With It). A different song choice, a strong vocal, and telegenic looks make this Philippine Idol semifinalist stand out.
Ira Marasigan (Mr. Melody). Ira gets points for her confidence on stage, her pretty face, and a seasoned vocal. We're also going out on a limb here and betting that what worked for Jan Nieto - a strong Atenean following with plenty of cash to spare - may rocket this Philippine Idol semifinalist into the top 4.
EJ Bautista (Paalam Na). EJ topped the Philippine Idol Updates poll, and we're sticking by our guns and betting that this half-deaf Philippine Idol semifinalist has generated a solid fan base and selected a song popular enough to win enough votes to make it into the Top 4.
We're predicting a tight race for the final slot between:
Suey Medina(Almost Over You) and Apple Chiu (Rhythm of the Night). Suey has generated a lot of positive buzz over the week with her appearances on I Love Philippine Idol, and her choice of Almost Over You is an impeccable and smart decision. Also, we can't deny Apple's popularity and runner-up status on Philippine Idol Updates, but her decision to go with the name Apple instead of Cherry may cost her votes.

The other Philippine Idol semifinalists have just as good a chance as any, but we're a little concerned:
Mau Marcelo. Great vocal and awesome song choice, but can she overcome the Philippine bias towards plus-size women? Nasty comments about her looks are circulating on the Net - can the Philippines look beyond base looks?
Stef Lazaro. Lazaro's fan base in Australia - another mighty foreign currency - can certainly vote her into the Top 4, but her song selection of the gentle Home for her otherwise powerful vocal is distressing.
Pow Chavez. Odd woman out selects a Filipino ballad. Can Paw's personality shine through with this song choice, or will she end up a victim of image vs. song choice, similar to American Idol 3's Briana Ramirez-Rial?
Arms Cruz and Ynah Pangan are contest veterans, so these ladies can pull off a surprise. Where does that leave Jeli Mateo and Tin Otero? Hey, they can surprise us come contest night - Jeli's looks have gotten her a good fan base with people who think she looks like Jennylyn Mercado, and Tin Otero can be this season's Latoya London, unnoticed until show night, when she blew people away.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Philippine Idol Updates Poll of the Week for 12 Girl Semifinalists

With three days to go before the female Philippine Idol semifinalists take the stage at the SM Megacinema, where a state-of-the-art stage has been built for the Philippine Idol broadcasts, the results of four days of informal voting on Philippine Idol Updates' Poll of the Week has brought in more than 450 votes.

Erika Jill Bautista, the partially deaf Philippine Idol semifinalist, leads the pack with 244 votes. Erika has earned more than a 53% share of total number of votes cast. Second after her is Philippine Idol semifinalist Cherry Chiu, the Spaghetti singer, with 56 votes (12% share). Completing the top 4 are Philippine Idol semifinalist Ira Marasigan (35 votes, 7% share) and Philippine Idol semifinalist Stephanie Lazaro (24 votes, 5% share).

Dark horse Philippine Idol semifinaliststs, according to the Philippine Idol Updates survey, are Philippine Idol semifinalist Maureen Marcelo (17 votes, 3.7% share), Philippine Idol semifinalist Pow (Pau? Paw? We'll confirm the official spelling for voting before Saturday) Chavez (15 votes, 3.3% share), Philippine Idol semifinalist Suey Medina (11 votes, 2.4% share), and Philippine Idol semifinalist Jellica Mateo (10 votes, 2.2% share).

Rounding out the bottom four female Philippine Idol semifinalists are Philippine Idol semifinalist Abigail Blanco (9 votes, 2% share), Philippine Idol semifinalist Armarie Cruz and Philippine Idol semifinalist Christina Otero (4 votes each, 0.9% share), and Philippine Idol semifinalist Rina Lei Pangan, who has not received a single vote.

24 Philippine Idol Updates visitors votes that they haven't found a favorite yet (5% share), one Philippine Idol Updates visitor likes them all, and one Philippine Idol Updates visitors doesn't like any of them (0.2% share).

Please note that this is an informal survey, taken even before we've heard any official notes come out of their talented mouths. It is no indication of popularity on the show.

On behalf of all of us at Philippine Idol Updates, thank you for making us part of your Philippine Idol internet habit. Drop by the Philippine Idol Updates blog for more information, photos, videos and surveys. Thank you very much!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

What are the Philippine Idol girls singing

Reliable sources have given Philippine Idol Updates this spoiler.

Jazz seems to be the genre of choice for the majority of the Philippine Idol contestants, with six ladies picking jazz songs for their showcase. Philippine Idol finalist Ira Marasigan is set to fly over the runs of Mr. Melody, Philippine Idol finalist Jellica Mateo will try to bring something new to Sergio Mendes' Bridges, Philippine Idol finalist Stephanie Lazaro will take on Home (we're not sure if it's Michael Buble's showpiece or the immortal ballad from Judy Garland), while Philippine Idol finalist Maureen Marcelo is set to impress with Anita Baker's Sweet Love. Philippine Idol finalist Anmarie Cruz will try to shed off a reported old-soul image with a take on the neo-soul classic Superwoman, while Philippine Idol finalist Suey Medina plays it equally cool with Patti Austin's Rhythm of the Street.

Five of the remaining six Philippine Idol girls are delivering OPM tracks and torch ballads. Cherry Chiu, the Philippine Idol finalist who sang Spaghetti at her audition in Manila, has lined up the torch ballad Almost Over You, while current Philippine Idol Updates poll front-runner Erika Bautista will do her own version of Rachel Alejandro's Paalam Na. Other Philippine Idol finalists doing local songs include Ina Pangan, who is set to give her own take on Halik, and Paw Chavez, who will try to bring a new twist to Ikaw Lamang. In a risky move, Philippine Idol finalist Christina Otero will take on Wendy Moten's Come In Out of the Rain, inviting comparisons to that other female champion on that other network who sang that as her finals contest piece. Philippine Idol finalist Christina Otero will take on the Melissa Manchester chestnut, the Carole Bayer-Sager-penned Come In From the Rain.

The sole breakaway Philippine Idol finalist to not pick a jazz, OPM, or ballad piece, is Abigail Blanco, who picks the uptempo R&B pop hit by Tina Turner, What’s Love Got to Do With It.

Our Predictions on Paper (POP, predictions made on song choice):
In a crowded group of female singers, Blanco's different song choice, if she delivers it well, bodes well for an easy entry into the Top 4. What's Love Got to Do With It is the only uptempo track for the ladies, and will make Blanco stand out without a doubt.

Cherry Chiu's strong voice and selection of the immortal pop ballad Almost Over You (a favorite with the masa and AB crowds) stands to make her a strong contender, while we can't deny the decent-to-good vocal and incredible back story of Erika Bautista, the current #1 placer in the Philippine Idol Updates poll of the week for female contestants, coupled with a popular OPM track, Paalam Na, could signal her entry into the Top 4.

Our final POP entry is a tossup, because we're torn between the simple elegance and class of Ira Marasigan, whose song choice is, in our opinions, a terrible choice (refer to Jasmine Trias' botched attempt at Mr. Melody) and Maureen Marcelo, who we're sure will knock Sweet Love out of the ballpark. Sentimentally, we love Ira, but at least for the moment, we're placing our last bet on Marcelo.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Vote for your initial favorite female Idol contestant!

Well, we're not scientific or anything, but the top 2 placers on the Philippine Idol Updates poll ended up in the Top 4 (Drae Ybanez, #1, and Jan Kurt Nieto, #2) at last night's results show. Coinkidink?

The time has now come to vote for your favorite lady! Go to the voting box to the right and click on your favorite girl's name! Polling updates will be posted Tuesday and Thursday in preparation for girls' night on Saturday.

Note: Philippine Idol Updates' polls exist primarily for fun. No one at Philippine Idol Updates manipulates the poll results (certainly without our knowledge, anyway), and is not scientific nor representative of the results on Sunday, September 10.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Philippine Idol results: First Final 4 from the boys

Welcome to the first-ever Philippine Idol results show! Hope they fixed up their technical difficulties.

Ooh, semi-live blogging. I love it.

The boys start out with On the Right Track, and the relatively cheesy song suits their High School Musical setup rather well. This should be interesting.

Ouch, bright lights.

Recap of their performances: Robert, Ken, Joseph, Drae, Gian, Freddie, Reymond, Ramirr, Christian, Onyx, Miguel, and Jan Kurt.

Ryan Agoncillo introduces Heart Evangelista to the tune of Isn’t She Lovely. She is, but the volume control on that electric guitar isn't. Ew. Heart’s mike isn’t working... oh, there it is. Gosh, she's pretty.

Her role: from 8-830PM every night, she will be the contestants' best friend, helping them "get through challenges," get information on personal life and family... in other words, the world's prettiest spy.

We meet Mel Villena, the gentleman leading the band, and then the three judges, yeah, yeah, get on with it.

Ryan asks the judges to name their selections.
Pilita – I like them all! (Yey, Mamita, you're truly useful.)
Francis – Drae, Ramirr, Robert, Gian Carlo.
Ryan – Gian Carlo, Drae, Robert, Ramirr.

The boys are divided into two groups:
Group A
Ken, Freddie, Robert, Onyx, Christian, Joseph

Group B
Ramirr, Reymond, Gian, Jan Kurt, Drae, Miguel

Obviously, Group B has the group of people who’ll make it, and Group A is made to sit down.

Ryan calls Drae Ybanez and Miguel Mendoza to the front. He asks Drae to step forward. He then tells them they've both made it! Wow – the teen vote carries through! Good for you, Miguel. Do better next time, you heard Pilita.

Reymond Sajor and Gian Carlo are asked to step forward. Ryan reminds Reymond his microphone short-circuited. He reminds Gian that he "killed" Footloose. Reymond makes it; Gian does not. Wow – there are shockers in this show!

Finally, Ramirr and Jan Kurt are asked to step forward. April Boy vs. Atenean cutie. Jan Kurt makes it; Ramirr issues a shrug and steps back.

Your first four Philippine Idol finalists: Drae Ybanez, Miguel Mendoza, Reymond Sajor, and Jan Kurt Nieto. (Note: Drae and Jan topped the Philippine Idol Updates poll. Shows you pessimists our poll isn't that stupid after, nyet?)

What happened here? Our interpretation: Gian and Ramirr's fan base - or those who were impressed - simply didn't vote; the same probably happened for Robert, who was an overwhelming favorite of Ryan C's and Francis M's. In Tagalog, kampante. You can never get kampante with this show, guys. You want your bets in, you gotta vote.

See you next week for the girls!

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Philippine Idol Top 12 guys Recaps

So! Did you tune in to Philippine Idol? What’d you think? While ABC-5 should be commended for pulling off the show, they’ve much to improve on. Sound quality was terrible, affecting performances, as you’ll learn later on in this recap, and production has a long way to go before it really matches the quality of other Idol shows aboard.

Bad sound notwithstanding, here are your recaps:
Freddie Cabael - Macho Gwapito
Freddie already becomes the answer to a trivia question, being the first semifinalist to sing in Philippine Idol history. His performance is decent, despite a nasal delivery that brings into question his earlier broadcast performances that showed his breathy R&B style. Certainly not a winning performance by my standards. I wonder if his father’s tuning in – I hope he is, because I don’t see Freddie making it to the Top 12.
Francis: I saw the real Freddie Cabael tonight.
Pilita: Lose the hat.
Ryan: Hope to see you in the next rounds to sing a ballad.

Robert Bernadas - Take a Look Inside My Heart
Robert’s voice is soothing, but the poor sound quality is killing me. His version of Take a Look Inside My Heart is more than passable. Let’s see what the judges have to say.
Francis: It was relaxed, effortless. You really could be Philippine Idol. I like your dimple.
Pilita: You look thinner.
Ryan: You are my bet!

Ken Dingle - More Today Than Yesterday
Ken's charismatic personality takes full control with his delivery of the Ayala Center theme song (Hahahaha!). He looks good, he rules that stage, and he makes good eye contact with the camera. Ken looks like he's about to run out of steam near the end, but that's okay. Good job, Ken.
: It was fun.
Pilita: I remember when you forgot your lyrics. You’ve got to do better than that.
Ryan: You’ve got a wide range; use it to the fullest.

Drae Ybañez - What You Won’t Do for Love
The Philippine Idol Updates poll topnotcher lives up to his top ranking, delivering a confident version of the Bobby Caldwell original. Ooh, he starts out on top of the stage and moves his way down. Strong vocals, good eye contact with the camera, and a solid finish. Hey, he does look like Spiderman.
Francis: Best performance of yours so far, but a bit safe.
Pilita: I like your confidence. I hope you make it.
Ryan: Best performance so far. You looked relaxed, you’re charming. Even if you don’t make it, you’ll make a good recording artist.

Onyx Culala - Windmills of Your Mind
The singing lawyer selects an ancient track, hoping to interpret the archaic single into something more contemporary. Unfortunately for Onyx, the arrangement and poor sound quality fail him, and the performance comes across as languid and lazy.
Francis: [I missed his comments because my son started to run across the room.]
Pilita: Kulang sa puwersa.
Ryan: Wrong choice of song.

Gian Carlo Magdangal - Footloose
Gian picks a relatively safe song, choosing the Kenny Loggins 80s chestnut Footloose. Magdangal performed this song as part of the chorus in the Footloose musical production, and his slick performance doesn’t fail to disappoint, save for a bum note at the end when his voice gives out.
Francis: In your element. You were born to do this.
Pilita: Really knows how to entertain the people. Ang galing-galing niya. That’s what we need. Appeal.
Ryan: Professional, sleek. I hope the voters come in for you.

Ramirr Grepo - Bed of Roses
Ramir wishes to package himself as a rocker, and his selection of Bed of Roses certainly wouldn’t make one question his rock-on preferences. A spot-on delivery – almost identical to Jon Bon Jovi – makes me wonder if I’m watching Philippine Idol or hanging out in a sleazy bar, but then again, if Ramirr’s looking to tap into the masa vote, he’s got it, especially with that money note at the end. The judges love it - again, proof that in the Philippines, hitting the high notes relatively well will result in almost unanimous praise. Tsk tsk tsk.
Francis: Kinikilabutan ako. Mawala na ang lahat, huwag lang si Ramirr.
Pilita: Ramirr, I love you!
Ryan: Best choice of song tonight. You are the singer to beat tonight.

Miguel Mendoza III - Highways of My Life
Hoo boy. Miguel admits he didn’t know the song, a foreshadowing that virtually dooms his performance. He is painfully pitchy all the way, his nerves are showing, his posing is a bit on the and one can see his nipples through his shirt. Ryan makes light of the fact he’s the youngest.
Francis: You have the potential to be the Philippine Idol, but do better.
Pilita: You’re still in school. Can you imagine all La Salle voting for you? I hope they all vote for you.
Ryan: I don’t think you’re mature enough to sing that song. You should have chosen better. I wish you well; sana makapasok.

Reymond Sajor - Tell Her About It
Reymond’s dancing is certainly infectious (can’t say the same for the near-all-white outfit). It’s a little variety show performance. Oh no! His microphone malfunctions! They give him a second chance, and he redoes the song, but he’s lost energy. What a pro. He deserves to go through to the next round just for picking up the pieces.
Francis: All contestants should emulate. This is the way a professional should act. Gumaling ka lalo. Panalo.
Pilita: That makes you a professional. It’s nice to see him perform.
Ryan: Tonight, you went to hell and came back not only alive but bongga.

Joseph Astor III - Why Can’t It Be
Joseph picks a Rannie Raymundo chestnut, and sings a decent version, although the low notes come across pitchy. Astor knows he is good-looking (the illegitimate son of Piolo Pascual and Sam Milby? He does look like either), and uses it to full effect, eye-mashing the camera. I can understand now why there’s a Parental Guidance sign above my screen.
Francis: Polish the diction, pero para sa akin, pasok ka.
Pilita: I’ve always liked Joe. You can see how much he wants to be Philippine Idol.
Ryan: Gusto ko ang boses mo. The earnestness, I can feel it. Sana makapasok ka.

Christian Masaga - Have I Told You Lately?
Christian chooses a song most popularly redone by Rod Stewart, a bit safe choice for his soothing baritone. Ooh, he lives up to his name, changing the lyrics a bit and makes it a Christian song, adding “Lord” in strategic places to give glory to his Maker. Wow, dude, that’s brave. I’ll send one vote your way.
Francis: It’s very emotional, he becomes one with the song. Moving performance, great.
Pilita: He always sings full of emotion, feeling. I hope he can make it.
Ryan: I didn’t like the song; I would have wanted to hear another song. It was good enough.

Jan Kurt Nieto - Bridge Over Troubled Water
The Atenean crooner and Philippine Idol Updates poll runner-up gets the pimp spot, and delivers a strategic performance of Simon and Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water, which gave Clay Aiken the boost he needed into the Final Two of Season 2 in American Idol. His performance is pitchy, just not that impressive, but hey, he’s got the look, and the pimp spot. Francis: I liked what you did at the end.
Pilita: I hope to see you again.
Ryan: I didn’t like it. I’m sorry. You didn’t connect.

Who do the judges pick?
Francis picks Ramirr for his song, and Reymond for grace under pressure.
Pilita has five choices and won’t share the names, save for Ramirr.
Ryan picks Ramirr and Gian Carlo.

Who do we pick?
My fearless forecast places comfortable Top 2 finishes for Ramirr Grepo and Gian Carlo Magdangal. The other two slots up for grabs, we’re going to go out on a limb and place Reymond Sajor for simply pulling through that technical mishap (sympathy votes count for a lot), and bypassing Ryan Cayabyab’s favorite Robert Bernadas for Philippine Idol Updates votegetting champ Drae Ybañez. Let’s see what happens!

Friday, September 01, 2006

Philippine Idol tasers

Here are the teaser videos for tomorrow's Philippine Idol broadcast featuring the 12 boys: