through the audition process, and we've had over 100
golden tickets, one judge storm out, a couple of nasty
fights, and a guy who sang lying down. And that's before
we hit Louisiana, which promises to be neither big nor
AUDITIONS: New Orleans Arena - New Orleans
CALLBACKS: Baton Rouge River Center - Baton Rouge
Fun fact... This is the home
state of the dawgfather.
First up, Megan Miller (22;
Ethel, LA), the current Miss Baton Rouge, who, now that she's graduated,
wants to concentrate on her music. But she's walking wounded, as she has
to deal with a nasty accident and infection on her leg. She's actually
scheduled for her surgery RIGHT AFTER this audition of "Something's Got
a Hold on Me" by Etta James. Nicki may know it as the track Flo Rida
used for "Good Feeling". She personifies the river blues of Baton Rouge.
And props for... props. And props for a golden ticket.
Now get to surgery, stat!
For the record, Megan's
surgery was a success, and she'll be back on her feet in time for
Charlie Askew (17; Little
Rock, AR; student) has always been very socially awkward. When he was
little, he couldn't reach out and connect. In fact, he's so strange in
this that doctors have called it "Charlie Askew Syndrome". But give him
a guitar and he can let it all out. He sings the intro to "Break
Through" by Queen. He sounds like what he is... a 17-year-old singing a
song double his age. In a way, he nails the money notes. His second
song, "Nature Boy" by Frankie, is equally as lifted. It's like what
would happen if you gave Donnie Darko a microphone. Now give Donnie
Darko a golden ticket.
Maddie Assel (17;
Centreville, VA; student)) had her world change in 24 hours. She's a
star scout product from her grandmother. She thought she was just going
on vacation, but this singer gets a visit from Randy and a personal
invite to audition "Oh! Darling" by the Beatles. She's got some pipes on
her. The tone matches the song, and she has a lot of youthful energy.
She'll need that in Hollywood.
And then it started to go...
How about... Paul Jolley
(22, Palmersville, TN), who calls this a calling in his life. He draws
from his grandfather who passed away. He wants to give back to the world
with his voice on "I Won't Let Go" by Rascal Flatts. He's a little
sharp, but the tone is there, or a "texture" as Nicki said. He's swept
to the next round.
The judges are starting to
fade. Can Christopher Barthel (24; Metairie, LA; lawncare), aka
"Mushroom", thanks Nicki, perk them up? I don't know but I'm confused.
He sings "If I Had You" by Adam Lambert. It's a poison mushroom from SMB
Dr. Calvin Peters (27; Fort
Worth, TX, physical rehab resident) - that's right, a doctor - hopes to
go from the VA to the AI. He wanted to get into med school, so he hid
his voice for a while. Today, The Singing Doctor will sing "Whenever,
Wherever, Whatever" by Maxwell. The doctor is in. Tune. Pitch. Range.
Meanwhile, the ladies
(Michelle Montezeri, Breanna Steer, Brandy Hotard) are getting just what
the doctor ordered.
It's getting hot in here.
Meanwhile, it's cold in the Toughest Room in America. Sounds like we
need a firefighter. Calling Dustin Watts (27; Albany, LA; firefighter)
with "She's Every Woman" by Garth Brooks. I think he can do a lot
better. He's got a voice, but he needs a song to go with it. The judges
are going to give him a shot, and he's going to give the news to his
We're down to our final
singer, Burnell Taylor (19, New Orleans, unemployed), who grew up in a
musical family. He knew he wanted to sing and could... after Katrina. He
lost everything in the storm, and it made him appreciate everything he
has. He closes the show with "I'm Here" from "The Color Purple". And
he's got the presence and the voice to match. This is the easiest
decision of the night, as all four judges send him to Hollywood. That's
Louisiana. And what an ending, as the panel is moved to tears.
This is why we watch. In
total, 35 little papers with numbers on them went home with 35 lucky
young people. Randy's hometown does it again, but can San Antonio
outdeliver? Come back next week to do a little Texas two-step, followed
by a historic audition aboard the Queen Mary in So-Cal.
Stay tuned for Glee over
most of these Fox stations.