June's take on Rockstar! A must read for a detailed opinion on the show.
Tommy Lee's life will always be larger than most any other human on this planet. He lives his life in the media; perhaps he has the Star and Enquirer on speed dial.
Last year on Rockstar: INXS that well known Aussie band sat contently offstage and let the contestants be the stars. INXS admitted they like pretty girls and still mourned the loss of Michael Hutchence, their ferociously deep and strong-voiced lead singer who died by mysterious means in a hotel room eight years ago. The would-be lead singers competing last summer were backed by an impressive "House Band" consisting of group leader and keyboardist Paul Mirkovich; rhythm guitarist Jim McGorman; lead guitarist Rafael Moreira; drummer Nate Morton; and bassist Sasha Krivtsov.
Each week had several episodes. Low ratings caused cancellation of one night with lower ratings focusing upon the band and singer's interactions and portrayed everyone's true colors. More people tuned in for the two nights featuring rock concert episodes, so the insightful home shows were relegated to VH-1 and the internet.
After breathtaking performances, INXS chose a singer most like Hutchence. That night last September when INXS chose Canada's J.D. Fortune over Chicago's stylistic powerhouse Marty Casey, everyone cut loose. INXS, a stalwart rock band with an eclectic repertoire, jumped on stage and off their couch potato positions on the sidelines to put on an impressive concert with both Casey and Fortune. If you watched only one night of reality television last year, that might have been the one best hour.
Season one's contestants bonded and still tour together. Many were Canadian and still have a sizeable following north of the border. There is closeness with the audience, perhaps modeled after the nurturing and gentle spirit given by INXS last year. http://www.suziemcneil.ca/kingstonShow.htm
When CBS wanted another band to search for a lead singer on TV, many groups came to mind. Van Halen often switches lead singers. Fans insisted host Dave Navarro's band would be the flavor of the summer, but Navarro denied it.
Then publicity suddenly began for the 2006 edition of Rockstar. Auditions were announced for "March 1st in Austin and to continue on to Boston, Atlanta, New York City, Chicago, Toronto, Minneapolis, Seattle, San Francisco, Vancouver, and Los Angeles through March 31st." The big announcement was Supernova would be seeking a lead singer. Who? A new band featuring former Metallica bassist Jason Newsted, ex-Guns N' Roses guitarist Gilby Clarke and Mötley Crüe drummer Tommy Lee.
But wait. Wasn't there already a band called Supernova? When the legal and trademark problems ended, apparently there would be one Supernova, the new one. The original Supernova came from California. Formed in 1989, the group was known for the song Chewbacca" in the movie Clerks, appeared on the Warped Tour in 1995 and 1999 and toured with the Buzzcocks. That group currently questions its status and name, but here we are with a new Supernova.
The band members are well known. Jason Newsted left Metallica in 2003. He played with the band Echobrain. Gilby Clarke worked with many artists since Guns N Roses came apart, notably Michael Jackson and Lenny Kravitz. And Tommy Lee? The guy best known for his on again, off again battling romance with former Baywatch actress Pamela Anderson is the son of a former Miss Greece. Lee released three solo albums and starred in NBC's "Tommy Lee Goes to College" last year taking class at the University of Nebraska in front of cameras.
For season 2 and facing Tommy Lee's aura, the singers are getting lost in the videotape. Even in the segments on the internet, no warm, chummy, or fun moments come through. This week, Dilana (more on her later) harshly criticizes sweet voiced Dana with the cameras rolling. Jill explains to the camera why she believes in herself, only to be chastised by Lee and crew back on the show for her self-assurance.
In fact, scolding and chewing out is a prevalent theme of this year's series. It's about performance and punishment. If you have come to the show for music, a talent contest, or personalities, you will be disappointed. .
One unfortunate contestant, second week, was left in the bottom three of the audience popularity votes and had to sing for his right to continue the show. Although he was up against two horrific singers, this contestant was booted because he sang a Duran Duran show. Granted, Duran Duran was never MY favorite band, but what happened on the program was ridiculous. As this melodic rocker went through his tune, Navarro, Lee, and Newsted sat in the judges chairs in clearly disinterested, angry, and passive aggressive postures. Afterward, the judges voiced a singular view, how dare that contestant insult heavy metal rockers by singing a Duran Duran song to them? The audience looked at the judges as though they had gone mad.
The performers took note: sing only hard rock or face harsh comments on live TV.
We predict the final three will be Dilana, Toby, and Lucas. The remaining contestants are:
Dilana Robichaux -The band treats Dilana as a goddess. One week she sang Nirvana's Lithium, approaching the microphone in a hooded jacket, hood up. Staring at the camera wild eyed, she sang most of her song. At one of the choruses, she played psycho onstage, flailing her arms and legs as she ran up and down. Then she quietly returned to the microphone. The dark and bizarre performance was rewarded with an encore the next night. A week later, almost each woman on the show attempted to copy this strange technique, only to be scolded by the band members for being unoriginal. That week, Dilana sang an unemotional and captivating version of Ring of Fire, again looking somewhat fixated. I vote her Most Likely to End Up in a Straight Jacket. Or perhaps to win. Toby is her main competition.
Jill Gioia-This very small woman seems sweet, sheltered, talented, and wanting to try anything to please the band. Her voice and stage presence are excellent. She has tried singing in a wedding dress and imitating a hard rocker. In the end, she sounds great and has a thriving solo career http://cdbaby.com/cd/jillgioia
. Is she related to Gwen Gioia of Reality TV's The Bachelor? In the end, Jill seems like she should be on a confessional reality show, as if instead of Gilby, Tommy, and Jason, she would rather be singing for Randy, Paula, and Simon. Most Likely to Have a Meltdown Onstage.
Dana Andrews-Dana has the best voice of the women on the show. It is deep, strong, and can be sweet when she doesn't opt for the dark sounds that Supernova prefers. Dana is the youngest and most naïve of the contestants, is popular with the audience but Dana is repeatedly chastised by the band for being soft and fresh faced. Even her name sounds nice and plain. Most Likely to Be Disillusioned.
Patrice Pike-Patrice is a power singer who is more serious than mean. She seems like a consummate professional and can probably change her wardrobe, sound, hair, and music at will to fit any situation. http://cdbaby.com/cd/pikerebellion2
. Most Likely to Be on the Show to Advance Her Solo Career. She should record with Jill Gioia.
Toby Rand-Toby is my choice to win. The Aussie crooner has a hard edge and a command on the stage. He takes over without overpowering everyone else on stage. His voice is melodic and strong yet he can handle metal or destroy a guitar on stage if you asked him. If he develops his onstage ferocity, I will vote him Most Likely to Have a Rockstar Career.
Ryan Star-Ryan should have been on board last season. His voice is good, he's cute, but the off stage action shows he is insecure. That won't cut it hanging out with Tommy Lee on a daily basis. Did he borrow his name from season 1 American Idol contestant Ryan Starr? Most Likely to Be Voted off Soon.
Magni Asgeirsson--Magni is from Iceland. He won an encore for his rendition of Plush by the Stone Temple Pilots. His lyrics are sometimes garbled and hard to understand; early on he seemed to have problems with the tunes. Most Likely to Be Gone When He Reaches the Bottom Three.
Lucas Rossi-Lucas has wild eyeshadow highlighting huge eyes and spiked up creatively dyed hair. On stage, he is as intense as his heavily hued makeup. He has a chance for the Rockstar job if he wants it. His interesting performances are improving each week. Perhaps he is the only one who has changed at all. Most Likely to Be Happy Singing for Supernova.
Storm Large-Storm seems to copy Dilana. Beside the weird name and a stage dive that impressed Tommy Lee, she doesn't stand out.
Zayra Alvarez-Zayra is all presentation. Her wardrobe comes from an S&M catalog, black rubber and spandex with cut aways in interesting spots. Crazy on stage and fun to watch, audience members still have to admit she doesn't sing well. Why is she still there? The manic, bizarre performances and cutaways make all the difference. With so many painful performers to choose from, it might be awhile before this one goes bye bye. Most Likely to Sound Like Fingernails on a Blackboard.
Who will front Supernova? It doesn't matter. They won't hold a candle to Tommy Lee who will be holding a blowtorch.