Music Television.

It ain’t what it used to be.

And specifically, I’m speaking of the newer breed of music television. You see, when MTV & VH1 left music and video for scripted & unscripted series, there left a void for music television.

And thus was born “reality” music television. Wherein video really did kill the radio star. Where it’s not enough to sing your heart out, you have to be young. And hot. Over 30? Sorry. Not model-hot? Yeah, no thanks. But you, hey, with the adequate voice and the slammin’ bod? Don’t worry, we’ve got Autotune.

Until now.

I used to watch American Idol but the horrible singers got to be too much. I know many still watch the audition rounds to see/hear the train wrecks that it produces (William Hung, anyone?). But I now know that those singers don’t get to be in front of the judges until several rounds of tryouts. So, these horrible singers who think they’re awesome have seemingly been told by producers and lesser judges (those who come before the marquee named judges) that they are awesome. Which explains why these people are so put out when they are harshly judged, laughed at or dismissed by the celeb judges.

This season might have been different, what with the energy that J Lo and S Ty bring to the panel, but the fact remains that the past “talent” featured in some seasons has been so questionable that I just can’t go back. Oh, there have been some awesome singers (yes, I have Kelly Clarkson on my iTunes) but you have to pick through the not so great singers to find them. And those weeks of singing when the themes are so contrived can take the best of the bunch and reduce them to a pitchy mess. I mean really, how often do artists break from their genre to record in a genre they are completely uncomfortable in? Kind of defeats the purpose.

And, I’ve heard those judges of the past lamenting the fact that the singers might sound good but they don’t look good. They don’t have the right image or clothes or hair or body to really pull off the song that they’re singing. I’m sorry, I thought it was supposed to be a show about music. And singing. And may the best singer win and all that. Sigh.

So when The Voice started advertising, I was skeptical. Another AI clone, I assumed. But this one sounded different. And I watched the first show. And I was hooked.

The show is in the final rounds now and there are 8 amazing singers whose songs have been selling on iTunes. I mean really awesome singers who know their strengths, disagree with their vocal coaches when they don’t like a song choice and they wail on these tunes.

The singers on The Voice are allowed to be artists, and are treated as artists; not as kids trying out for a High School Musical audition, but real artists. They aren’t limited by ridiculous age requirements or who can best sing a disco or country song. They are allowed to be themselves, and they shine.

And another thing The Voice has that AI doesn’t? Frenchie Davis, who was once a part of AI but disqualified for a mistake in her past. I mean really, folks. Anyone who has really lived is going to have an embarrassing moment or two in their past. And we all know that any singer worth their salt has to do some living.

FTR, my top 5 performances from The Voice (so far):

  1. Dog Days are Over – Vicci Martinez
    Florence & the Machine cover that you have to watch. Visually stunning with awesome drums. Vicci is a stomper and I love her.
  2. The Thrill is Gone – Beverly McClellan
    You will never forget Beverly once you see her, and she is a bluesly, hardcore bundle of hot singing.
  3. Breakeven – Xenia
    This uber-shy teenager reminds me of Amy Winehouse, sans heroin.
  4. Use Somebody – Jared Blake
    Yeah, he’s hot but the man can sing & he tears the roof off this sucker.
  5. Come as You Are – Rebecca Loebe
    An amazingly haunting reimagination of a Nirvana classic.

The last 2 of these are not in the finals but still posted some awesome performances.

11 Responses to Music Television.
  1. Kim
    June 22, 2011 | 4:51 pm

    I love The Voice for all the reasons you’ve pointed out. And on the shallow side of things, getting to see Blake Shelton and Adam Levine weekly certainly doesn’t hurt, either!
    Kim´s last [type] ..Best of times- worst of times

    • Ri
      June 22, 2011 | 5:01 pm

      Would you believe I have yet to watch The Voice? I think it’s the spectre of Xtina looming on my television that keeps me away…*shudder*

      • Mari
        June 22, 2011 | 5:03 pm

        That is part of what drew me in! After the trainwreck of the past few months, I was intrigued.
        And oh yeah, Blake & Adam are yummy. :)
        Mari´s last [type] ..Sailing

  2. Mari
    June 22, 2011 | 8:20 pm

    FTR, I’m calling Vicci, Javier, Beverly & Xenia in the final round. Voting results to be revealed within the hour.
    Mari´s last [type] ..Sailing

    • Mari
      June 22, 2011 | 9:13 pm

      Well, Xenia was a hopeful choice. I just really like her voice. Dia is projected to win by several outlets. I’m torn!
      Mari´s last [type] ..Sailing

  3. Tiffani
    June 22, 2011 | 10:33 pm

    I’ve watched once. And I liked Nakia. And Blake is nice to look at. Adam doesn’t do anything for me, though. ;-)
    Tiffani´s last [type] ..Vacation … it never lasts long enough

  4. singlemama_cc
    June 22, 2011 | 11:17 pm

    I haven’t seen the show…or anything but iCarly for that matter. Damn kid, hogs the remote…and I let her bc there is so little I actually want to see. I’m just not into reality tv at all. If I wanted to face reality, I’d pay attention to my life. I’m watching tv, I want my brain to be mush but then again….I was raised on Santa Barbara and All My Children so my tv tastes are inadequate anyway.
    singlemama_cc´s last [type] ..Wordless Wednesday

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