I don’t know about you but after a few episodes of any talent auditions, I’m ready for the real show to begin. However, X Factor continues to showcase plenty of talent, which sounds promising for the upcoming season. The good news is, even in a world of auto-tune and mechanically treated songs, the upcoming generation has chops. Besides 37-year-old country singer Tate Stevens, 39-year-old soul singer Vino Alan and 42-year-old Panda Ross, most contestants pushed through to boot camp were teenagers. I’m putting my money down on 13-year-old Diamond White who sung “It’s A Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World” by James Brown and 16-year-old Brandon Hassan who soulfully sung his way through “Trouble” by Ray LaMontagne. And when you combine these two performers with last week’s future star Carly Rose Sonenclar, it seems teenagers will rule the roost this season.
But let’s not forget the older contestants. One of the other things I love about talent shows is the opportunity platform it gives those who otherwise would never be scouted. This week’s X Factor episode featured two feel good stories. First, we were introduced to Tate Stevens. I’m not normally a country music fan but as soon as he came on to the stage he stole my undivided attention. Then when he opened his mouth to sing I was so happy to hear his deep voice and classic country tone. The fact that he comes from a small town and still works for the same city he grew up in, makes me hope he goes the distant in the competition. If nothing else just for the experience. I’m willing to root for a father that got a late start to his singing career due to providing for his family.
The other show-stealer was Panda Ross, who wore a necklace with the word ‘SINGLE’ on it just for Simon. ”He’s my baby’s daddy,” the soulful singer boasted. Even after a 7-day stint in the hospital for pneumonia, Panda showed up to tryouts ready for a chance at 5 million dollars. “America is ready to have a little piece of the Panda…a little piece of Panda pie,” she told the camera. And I think she’s right. There’s something to seeing someone in love with life and then sharing that feeling through song. Like Simon said, “She has the voice of a legend.” After coming off the stage, Panda started having breathing problems and was rushed to the hospital, which makes me think if she can sing that well sick, I can’t wait to see what happens at boot camp.
Stay tuned for tonight’s audition episode as the X Factor crew searches for America’s next star. In the meantime, here are some of Wednesday night’s accolades.
Best Quote: Simon Cowell “You’re a bit like a singing candle. You just stand up there and melt.”
Most Unexpected Performance: (TIE) Rizzloe Jones, improve rap about X Factor AND Britney Spears, “Happy Birthday” to LA Reid
Most Likely To End Up on Anti-Depressants: CeCe Frey, though her rendition of Christina Agulera’s “Ain’t No Other Man” got her to boot camp, she isn’t going to like how the editing team showcased her snotty, bratty ways
Most Delusional Performance: Deangelo Wallace, his ode to Chris Brown made the judges leave their seats, but that didn’t stop the singer from belting out his tune. (Deangelo was also later arrested for stealing a $3000 mic pack from the show)
Most Likely to Succeed: Diamond White, “It’s A Man’s World’
Most likely To End Up In Las Vegas: Citizen, where else would five diva-guys sing “Don’t Let Go” by En Vogue
Best Group Performance: Sister C, these girls will go far in the competition
Song Most Likely Downloaded After Show: “Nobody Knows” by Pink sang by Jessica Espinoza, she brought the emotion and the power to the stage
Who are your favorite contestants thus far? And what do you think makes them so special?