North Carolina always seemed like such a nice state. It’s the home of congenial American Idol alums Clay Aiken, Anoop Desai, Kellie Pickler and season 10 winner Scotty McCreery.
mariah carey nicki minaj – Wednesday night’s show started pleasant enough, with host Ryan Seacrest driving a race car enjoying the soothing sounds of the “Pina Colada” song, but that’s where the calm ended.
Cut to TMZ, and the dramatic foreshadowing of the brawl heard around the world. But first, the cameras rolled back six hours earlier and the arrivals of our judges: Nicki Minaj in full cotton candy hair, Mariah Carey playing up to reporters, Keith Urban with his adorable charm and Randy Jackson just being himself.
McCreery brought much of his aw-shucks wholesomeness in a brief appearance kicking off on Wednesday night’s edition of auditions, hugging adoring fans and appearing from a scissor lift smiling for the cameras outside the Time Warner Cable Arena.
“Two years ago, I was standing in the stands like y’all,” he said, recalling how Seacrest said that the next American Idol could be in the room. (mariah carey feuds)
A little later during auditions at the Charlotte Raceway, a cute exchange between Urban and Carey revealed how the star got into writing songs. She was 6 years old and began by writing poems.
“That’s such a great way to start,” he said.
But things looked like it would get nasty right quick, as the show actually did go “there,” airing the much-ballyhooed brouhaha between Minaj and Carey. Just how bad was it, and did it deserve the extra security measures Carey said she had to take?
The incident, which has been boiling under since the airing of the New York auditions, began over conflicted vocalist Summer Cunningham, a 20-year-old student from Georgia, and her audition of Bill Wither’s “Lean on Me.”
Cunningham was pretty enough, with a strong vocal and style, but her comment that she “did the country thing” insulted Urban, kicking off an inquisition that grated on Minaj, who loved Cunningham’s voice, tone and look. Jackson argued that Cunningham’s voice lent itself to country with her yodel, and Carey questioned if she loved country music when she was growing up.
“Is it your passion?” she asked.
So far, so tame, until Minaj, clearly irritated and rolling her eyes in disgust, called out the panel for starting a “country music debate.”
“We are scaring her into lying,” Minaj argued.
This prompted the greatest Idol war in all judging history that we, the viewers, didn’t really get to watch. There was an argument, yes, and Minaj did flee the room with a hearty “shut the f— up” after Jackson threw his 30 years of music industry experience in the “Pound the Alarm” singer’s face.
Still — country music was the catalyst for the whole hype? Go figure.
Carey got the last word in the fight, deadpanning, “That was my move.”
“I was going to do that the next time she ragged on me,” she said.
And that. Was. It.
All that hype, all that build-up, and THAT was the cause of the fight that lead Minaj to call Carey “her f—ing highness” in multiple leaked reports? It could be argued that Minaj actually had a POINT. Why are the others grilling the poor girl about her musical heart? On the flip side, this is television, and there is pressure to make things happen for the cameras.
Unfortunately, the whole thing took away from Cunningham’s moment, but to her credit, Minaj continued to advocate for the girl, long after she left the room with her ticket.
Just when it seemed the show was in jeopardy following a dramatic lockdown of auditions, a doe-eyed contestant reminded the panel of the true meaning of Idol.
Brandy Hamilton, a 25-year-old North Carolina Navy Reservist, was a bundle of nerves before her audition, as the only thing the media was crowing about was the fight. As she entered the room, she charmed the panel by informing them she used to get in trouble for “singing too much.”
Newly dubbed “honey pie,” Hamilton captivated with an Etta James song, “All I Could Do Was Cry,” and suddenly there was good will and peace in the room, as she was awarded with a ticket to Hollywood.
But as she walked to the door, Hamilton turned to the judges and put it all back into perspective.
“Please don’t fight,” she said in a moment reminiscent of Tiny Tim in A Christmas Carol. “It makes us cry.”
With that plea, harmony was restored in the Idol universe. God bless us, everyone.
Thankfully, the show didn’t harp on the fight as much as it could have and instead blessed the viewers with some truly amazing talent — perhaps even a winner. Also enjoyable: a string of some of the most creative contestant nicknames a la Minaj yet (this blogger especially enjoyed the monikers “Fishnet Lady,” “Gumby,” “Ladybug” and “Chicken Lady”), and the most important cannon fodder for the blooper reel. Here are the moments that stood out:
READ FULL LATEST NEWS VIA HOLLYWOOD REPORTER
American idol hit rock bottom when they got Nikki to be a judge
— Dread_HeadR8 (Austin Kirk) (@Dread_HeadR8) Thu Jan 24 2013