Lydia's Sunrise FL Recap

My husband and I had a grand time last night at the show. Mandisa was the perfect person to open. She received wild applause and sang better than on the show. Has a Mahaila Jackson power and gospel sound, but that’s just her problem, I think—she sounds like a lot of singers one might find in churches around here on Sunday. Nothing distinguishes her. She seems like a lovely person with a beautiful speaking voice, and she handles herself well on stage.

Ace is handsome, more so in person. His singing is probably good enough if you like that kind of boy band sound, and he definitely sounded better than on the show. Twice last night he bounded off the upper stage ramp onto the lower stage in such a leap that if he makes any mistakes, he’s going to be coming out in a wheelchair for the next show. Not sure why he feels the need to show off that skill. Ace charmed me by telling that he and Bucky had gone to the beach and were now considering buying a place here. He said it was the most beautiful beach he’d ever seen. He’s not exaggerating, IMO. Fort Lauderdale’s beach is gorgeous and the breeze is spectacular during this broiling summer. Many of the Idols commented on that, including Kat, who said she liked it better than CA’s. Me, too. No comparison. Truly, actually—they are very different, so it’s a matter of taste, I’ll concede. Maybe they say that everywhere they go. I liked it, though.

Lisa’s keyboard playing was impressive, her voice less so. Paris’s voice did not sound strong last night, but she did her dance routine well. She and Lisa are cute kids who seem to be having the time of their lives. The crowd gave them lots of applause.

Bucky did not get the love, sorry to say, because he is so cute, and I think he tried hard, but the stage presence is not there yet. I couldn’t understand him when he spoke, much less when he sang, and I’ve lived in the south for a long, long time. (I know grits-in-the-mouth speech.) I think Bucky will sound better recorded and should stick to country, after a few elocution lessons.

I am shocked to be writing this, because I liked Chris on the show and had read such great things about him on the tour, but neither my husband nor I cared for him last night. He didn’t show off his voice, which I like, and did not show any charisma or performance skills. The crowd went wild for him, though. Regarding the self-stimulation he was rumored to have performed last show—in an effort to leave no detail unobserved, I employed high powered binoculars, even though sitting quite close, to monitor the placement of his hands. They did not drift into unfamily-friendly zones you may or may not be pleased to hear.

Elliott came out in a t-shirt with Israel and a Star of David on the front, which was perfect for a South Florida audience. They roared for him. His mother sat a few seats from us and had held court throughout the intermission, shaking hands, dispensing hugs and signing whatever was thrust into her face. She clearly loved the attention! Elliott sounded better than ever on MMFL. We really enjoyed that. He was my second favorite performer last night, because of that song.

Kat hobbled around and sounded top quality on Rainbow. Didn’t care for the Horse and Tree song on the show or last night. Loved her dress. She is not a presence on stage, even though she is a stunning girl. The crowd couldn’t really cheer for her entrance because when the lights hit her she was already sitting at the top of the built up part of the stage, singing that dumb song, but they didn’t cheer much when she finished, either. Rainbow received strong applause, though, but nothing like many others had gotten.

Taylor came through the audience smiling a thousand watts and did his thing. He has total command of the stage, definitely played the guitar (no matter what the Miami Herald guy said and I did agree with many of the things we wrote, by the way, as you can see) and wailed on the harp. When he tried to take his guitar off, his ear plugs came out. He laughed as he put them back in and said something about that being the first time he’d ever lost his ears and could actually hear the audience noise. Thanks! he said. It was very spontaneous and personable. He was our favorite of the night. He had always been my favorite, even though I liked all of the people. My husband had never seen any of them perform, except Taylor on the Ford commercial, so he had no bias. He liked Taylor first and Kat’s voice second. The others, he said, were talented but not up to Taylor’s overwhelming entertainment ability. I don’t think Taylor’s real vocal abilities were showcased in that type of venue, but his rendition of DIMYP was as good or better than any I’ve heard.

I really, really hope he gets to put out a great CD that shows off his soulful sound.

Hats off to all you teachers--yours is the noblest of professions! I hope it's a wonderful school year for all of you.