American Idol entered the second week of its current season. After weeks of media coverage and speculation about the Mariah Carey-Nicki Minaj feud, American Idol promised to reveal their footage of the big showdown that occurred between the two judges, and I must say, it was nothing at all what I expected.
Although I still think the casting of Nicki Minaj was a desperate attempt to draw in ratings and create controversy, I must admit that right now she is actually my favorite judge. Her critiques have been on point, she has good interaction with the contestants, and she lets them down honestly without being overly harsh. Plus she brings a lot of good energy (when she’s not feuding with the other judges) and pizzazz (read: crazy) to the panel.
Regarding the big brouhaha – First off, it was slightly false advertising, as the disagreement was actually between Nicki Minaj and all three of the other judges, not just Mariah. That’s right, Nicki Minaj took on the entire panel. Secondly, she was absolutely, 100% correct, and Keith Urban, Mariah Carey, and Randy Jackson were wrong. This is why I will henceforth think of Nicki Minaj as “Nicki Minaj, unlikely voice of reason”.
In case you missed it, here’s what went down. A contestant chose to sing “Lean on Me” for her audition. She had a very lovely tone and a slight country twang in her voice, and was definitely one of the stronger performances of the night. Nicki Minaj admired the control and texture of her voice and complimented the girl’s performance (after all this is a singing competition, and the judges are there to provide feedback on a contestant’s singing). The next to comment was Keith Urban, who decided to defer his critique until after he’d determined what type of artist the young girl considered herself. She said she had tried the “country thing”, but considered herself more of a “country soul” singer.
Keith immediately took some offense to the phrase “country thing”. Mariah and Randy both jumped on the bandwagon to say that she sounded like she should be a country singer. They’re overall vibe toward the contestant was that if she didn’t consider herself to be a country singer then they could not endorse her because clearly she she didn’t know who she was. WHAT!!!
Since when is this show about forcing contestants into a particular genre of music. As I watched the TV, I could only giggle at the increasing frustration displayed on Nicki Minaj’s face as the other three contestants continued to debate over this girl’s future in country music, without actually discussing her demonstrated singing ability. After several failed attempts to explain to the other judges that in a singing competition the contestant should be judged on his/her singing, she did what any other (sane?) person wearing a pink cotton candy wig and a tutu would do – she threw a semi-tantrum and stormed off the set. And I kinda didn’t blame her.