September 24, 2011

Podcast: The X-Factor Season 1- Auditions Week 1

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Episode 17 direct download

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Summary
We enjoyed the premiere of The X-Factor, contrary to what we expected when we first sat down to watch the show. We were expecting the auditions to be like on American Idol, but instead the feel of the episodes was closer to what So You Think You Can Dance does. The first episode in particular focused on the good contestants and relegated the majority of the poor auditions to a montage. The moderate pacing and extended length for the songs gave the show an organic flow in contrast to most reality shows which make use of quick cuts and short sequences.

The structure of the show is interesting, from the audience appearing to influence the choice of who gets through and who doesn’t to allowing people too old or young for American Idol to shine. We’re not convinced really old people will do well in this show since the need for energy and a strong vocal performance will be necessary in the long run. We also didn’t see much strength from the group auditions so far. We’re hoping the next round of auditions will reveal a compelling group act for us to enjoy.

Of course, no reality audition process would be complete without the bad auditions, of which we had several from Geo Goddley dancing around in a leopard print thong (no, he wasn’t naked although the censoring X made it appear that way) to Dylan Lawson’s freakout (we still have no idea what he was doing or what song that was supposed to be). Xander Alexander was an interesting case as his vocal ability wasn’t bad, but his attitude turned the audience against him. We’re convinced that if he auditioned for American Idol, he would have gone through and then would have had an intense backlash.

Siameze Floyd, Marcus Canty and Nick Voss intrigued us. We’re not yet convinced by them as their vocal abilities aren’t stellar, but they made up for it with good performances so we’re giving them the benefit of the doubt and want to see more. Caitlin Koch we don’t get at the moment. Her voice is good, but we didn’t find it as appealing as the judges did. Because a lot of people online and the judges liked her, we’re waiting to see another performance from her before we pass judgment.

We were blown away by Chris Rene, Stacy Francis and Melanie Amaro. Chris Rene pulled out a performance and sense of musicianship that we didn’t expect and Stacy and Melanie provided stellar vocal work and personality. Stacy’s soulful cover of Aretha Franklin moved us and made us happy to see her finally get her break. Melanie floored the room with their amazing control, strong range and sense of dynamics during her performance. She commanded the room without even having to move around.

We’re looking forward to the next round of auditions!

Please let us know your thoughts by dropping us a comment here after listening either here! We love to hear feedback and what you thought of the show. We also encourage you to check out our blog or twitter feed to keep up to date with us!

Episode Length: 40:39

Time Stamps
0:00 – Introduction: We enjoyed the first two episodes and compare it with American Idol.
4:21 – About the production: General feel, how it’s different from American Idol, how the audience affects the process.
8:20 – Discussion about the judges
12:43 – The lower age limit: Rachel Crow and Ellona Santiago
16:47 – Can really old people do well in this? Dan and Venita.
18:48 – Benefits middle-aged people the most: Stacy Francis and Dexter Haygood
22:19 – Bad auditions: Geo Goddley, Dylan Lawson, Xander Alexander
27:50 – Interesting auditions: Siameze Floyd, Marcus Canty, Nick Voss and Caitlin Koch
33:13 – Amazing auditions: Chris Rene and Melanie Amaro
38:54 – Wrap-up: What do you think?

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September 23, 2011

The Crews Reaction To The First Week Of The X Factor (Videos)

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And so the show begins and a great one at that for music and reality fans everywhere!!! Below are the crews reaction to this first week of shows. Simon said the audience is tough and a judge of each contestant as much as they are. Much more below for their reactions. I like the comments for how Simon has gone “soft” which I agree with. L.A. Reid is the tough one (but, I actually found myself agreeing with L.A. Reid more than Simon).

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September 20, 2011

X-Factor Podcast!

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Hey everyone!

With the US series premiere of The X-Factor airing in less than 24 hours, we wanted to let any readers know that a podcast will be posted for you to check out. These episodes are a segment of our television-focused podcast series, Reflections on Pop Entertainment, co-hosted by my fiancée Meghan and myself (James). We’re excited to be partnering with purexfactor.com to help add content to this new site and to also get our podcast out to a larger audience. We look forward to interacting with fans of the show!

To give you some background about ourselves, Meghan and I have known each other since college where we participated in theatre together. We are very analytical when it comes to the things we enjoy and we constantly discussed and analyzed shows with each other. After doing this for the past couple years, we decided that we should turn these discussions into a podcast. We both come from different academic backgrounds (Meghan has a Masters degree in American literature and I’m pursuing a Ph.D. in physics), which combined with our theatre background gives us what we hope is a unique perspective.

This past summer we recorded a series of podcasts covering season 8 of So You Think You Can Dance, so visitors who frequent puresytycd.com may recognize us from over there. In addition, this Fall we are recording a segment called TV Week in Review (for lack of a better title) where we discuss various scripted and reality TV shows that we watch, such as The Amazing Race, Fringe and Person of Interest. Those episodes will not be posted here, but anyone interested in listening can visit our personal blog. You can also follow our Twitter account @ReflPopEnt for our latest updates and thoughts.

To give you an idea of what to expect from us, we anticipate our X-Factor podcasts will follow a similar structure as our So You Think You Can Dance episodes. We didn’t cover the auditions for SYTYCD, but we are covering those for the X-Factor. Following auditions are the boot-camp and judges’s houses rounds, which happens in place of a “Hollywood” or “Vegas” week ala American Idol and SYTYCD. Since we haven’t seen how these episodes are structured yet, we are anxious to see how they play out and to discuss what happens. When we get to the actual performance/elimination episodes, we discuss the elimination and what it means in the greater context of the competition, the performances from the Wednesday episode, judges reactions and anything else interesting that happened during the week.

We look forward to the premiere and to getting our first podcast out to you. Look for it at the end of the week on either Friday or Saturday.

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August 30, 2011

US X Factor ‘Judges On The Judges’ (Video Teaser)

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The X Factor official site has released another new teaser in anticipation to the September 21st and 22nd premiere. You can view the judges interacting with one another and speaking about how they believe in their team. They talk of how much they respect each other. All this and more below.

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August 26, 2011

X Factor Simon Cowell And Paula Abdul For Interview Magazine September 2011

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I do see a big difference in the American work ethic compared to the British work ethic in a lot of artists. Nicole Scherzinger, who is a judge on X Factor, is a great example of that. This girl, honest to god, is like a machine. She’s up at five in the morning. She’s in the gym. She’s jogging. She’s working. She’s thinking about everything. She’s rehearsing. She’s hustling. She’s aware of what’s happening around her. She’s got that 360-degree vision. Beyoncé has that as well. And I think what we’re experiencing is almost like one of those B-movies from years ago where we’re seeing sort of the rise of the super female pop star. It’s like a different breed. ~Simon Cowell in Interview Magazine

Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul posed together for a glamorous new shoot promoting the X Factor in the new September issue of Interview Magazine. Simon is interviewed as well. He talks of how he was inspired to do the show being he always liked to watch TV and he loves music. He talks of what it’s like to say “no” to contestants. He also talks of the differences in work ethic between the UK and the US. All this and more at the link.

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August 24, 2011

X Factor Team Covers The Hollywood Reporter September 2011 (Behind The Scenes Video)

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We are inching closer and closer to the Septemebr 21st premiere of the X Factor. In light of the event, the X Factor team of judges and host are covering the September issue of Hollywood Reporter. In the new issue, Simon is interviewed. They ask him what he hopes for the most with the X Factor. He says “Buzz” as he wants everyone talking about it. He’s setting the bar with wanting 20 million viewers a week. All this and much more in a new article all about Simon and the X Factor >>>>HERE. You can veiw a behind the scenes video of the cover shoot below…

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August 18, 2011

Nicole Scherzinger Talks Of How Serious She Is About Judging The X Factor

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Fox All Access spoke to Nicole about what it’s been like to share the judging panel with Simon. She relates how he’s rubbed off on her when it’s come to being “blunt”. She didn’t use to know how to say “no”, but, now that she’s been hired as a “judge”, she’s taking on the role seriously. More below…

Here Nicole is singing her hot new single “Don’t Hold Your Breath” on Regis and Kelly today as well getting interviewed on the X Factor.

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August 17, 2011

Mariah Carey In Final Negotiations To Mentor US X Factor Contestants

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According to a Deadline exclusive (who have been a good source for new X Factor news in the U.S.), Mariah Carey is in final negatiations to mentor the contestants from the X Factor. Details below. Be sure to read the link for the full story as they question if adding Mariah to the show will “outglitz both The Voice and American Idol”.

Simon Cowell is in final negotiations to have Mariah Carey as his personal pick to mentor his contestants from his house. “He’s still finalizing her deal,” an insider tells me. The X Factor is pulling out all the stops to draw in other superstars as mentors. Contacts are being made now with “the Beyoncés, the Rihannas, all of them.” the insider tells me. The X Factor’s UK original series reportedly has signed up Usher as a mentor. Mariah’s name has been mentioned in connection with the U.S. show from the beginning but her twins pregnancy prevented her from being one of the judges.

I’m not sure about The Voice as I don’t watch that show. I love American Idol though and I think I will love watching both American Idol and the X Factor. I’m loving everything I’m hearing about the X Factor too and who has been picked to do the show. I’ve awlays been a Mariah Carey fan.

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August 16, 2011

X Factor Host Steve Jones In Fall TV Crush Forecast Top 10 List

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Buzz Sugar has pegged US X Factor host, Steve Jones, in their “Top Ten Hot Guys” List to watch on TV this Fall. Check out who else made the cut at the link and see if you don’t agree.

Steve Jones
Move over Seacrest: The X Factor’s host Steve Jones is a tall, dark, handsome emcee. You’d think it would be hard to upstage the antics of Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul, but come Fall, I think the Welsh Jones will give them a run for their money.

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August 10, 2011

Simon Cowell Speaks On Paula and Mariah Carey’s Top Secret Role On The X Factor

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Extra spoke to Simon Cowell about his dream team of judges. He talks of the chemistry of he and Paula. It’s never been “happier”. Simon wants Mariah Carey to play a role on the show somehow too as reported to you earlier. However, he is still keeping it “top secret” only revealing that Mariah wants “a throne and a raised platform”. lol More below. Be sure to see the link to see Simon’s secret for anti-aging.

Revealing the chemistry between he and Paula is still strong, Cowell said, “It’s never been happier.”

The executive producer still wants new mom Mariah to join the show, saying, “We just have to decide what [Carey will be doing on the show],” adding, “It’s top secret, I can’t tell you!”

Cowell continued, “Mariah wants to be, in her own words, ‘judging the judges,’ literally with a throne and a raised platform… and I’m not kidding.”

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