Wednesday, February 13, 2008

American Idol- A Night at the Opera

"I see a little silhouetto of a man
Scaramoosh, scaramoosh
Can you do the fandango?...."

Join in with your highest falsetto.

Watched the final auditions of American Idol the other night. This was the part where they all get sent to LA for week-long auditions. Someone has finally realised that since they are in the contest as soloists, there's no point in keeping them up all night, rehearsing with people they would usually spit on, so we were spared those histrionics. They were allowed instruments for some reason, which resulted in some of Simon's most vitriolic comments yet.
The judges were pretty merciless, but they had a lot of people to get through, and Paula has toughened up a bit, waiting until the other two have said "no" and then meekly adding, "Sorry" when the contestants are really diabolical.

Anyway, the "scaramoosh" reference above was brought on by the extraordinary number of contestants who attempted renditions of "Bohemian Rhapsody"; most of them don't even have parents who would remember it. You just know they couldn't possibly have been able to sing the whole 47 minutes of it. As I stood, left hand held aloft, poised for "Mama, ..........just killed a man", my 15 and 12 year olds asked (for the fifth consecutive year), "You know this?".
Five minutes later, I am not lying, came a commericial for an insurance company or some such friendly insititution, with the background song of "You're my best Friend" - again, by Queen and off the same album. (A Night at the Opera) At this point my 12 year old said, "Mom (he's American), we should really get a Queen CD". Cough, splutter, splutter.
Several years ago I decided to renew my LP collection in the form of CD's. Actually, it wasn't so much my decision as that of the shops who'd stopped selling them and a husband who got rid of the turntable. Among the aquisitions were Fleetwood Mac's "Rumours" - come on guys, who didn't fancy the pants off Stevie Nicks, and ladies, who among us wasn't to be seen with a hairbrush at the bathroom mirror warbling in imitation? Other purchases included Led Zep's "In through the Out door", Blondie's "Parallel Lines" and, of course, Queen's "A Night at the Opera". I distinctly remember playing it in the car when the older two were about 8 and 6. OK, I didn't expect them to "get it", but I also didn't expect such boredom and derision. Hadn't they both at this time, mastered "Twinkle" in the Suzuki violin book? After the American Idol show of course, they're all looking a wee-bit shamed faced. Eating humble pie. Begging forgiveness. Well, hinting at begging.
Who would've guessed it? Clueless old "mom" actually has a clue - or she would if she would only stop buying CDs and cop on to the Ipod thing where you can download any song you want - or something like that.

I also have a pair of lace, fingerless gloves left over from the glory days of the 80's - just waiting for a revival.


  1. I remember when that album came out; talk about a life-changing experience ;) Glad I don't have to watch the US version of "I'm a Celebrity, Why Isn't Anyone Paying Attention to Me?" The crap we get here is bad enough.

  2. I think mine 'get it' too much. My 5 year old boy now knows all the words to 'Don't Stop Me Now' -although he learned them from the McFly cover version (oh, the guilt, sorry Freddie) - whereas he struggles with 'Twinkle Twinkle Little Star'.... that's the trouble now Mummy has an i-pod, the house rocks to 500 eighties classics played on permanent shuffle all day long and the little guy has totally missed out the nursery rhyme stage. Don't do it!!! His favourite song is 'Shoot the Runner' by Kasabian...
    Also, my daughter (7) switches CBeebies off now and just wants to know when X Factor is going to come back on and whether she can stay up late for 'Dancing on Ice'. Oh dear.

  3. Are you trying to say that you weren't wearing those gloves to type this post, with your hair tousled in a Cyndi Lauper style, your lip gloss shining and a Madonna-esque ra-ra skirt swishing around your girlish legs, EPM? Shame on you...

  4. My kids are also impressed that mum knows many songs on the radio, now they have cottoned on to the fact they have been out before the question always is 'was that song out in the olden days mummy?' 'I'm 35 not 85' is usually the response. I have kept all my singles and LP's, I have no turntable either but I am not prepared to replace them with CD's when I've already bought the single! 'What's a single mummy?' I showed them and they gave them the same look they would a green vegetable. Kids today.

  5. Mikeh - I have to say (with some embarrassment) that I love American Idol as the last handful of contestants can actually sing. I think I will have a little bet with the kids over the winner!
    Nobby&me - welcome. A great compromise I have found is the latest release of Jungle Book. Apart from being the best film ever, this DVD has all the words on. Dinner at our place is now jazzin' rather than rockin'.
    PM - Drunk Mummy had the patent on the ra-ra skirt, complete with woolly tights and ankle boots. I can proudly say I never wore one altho' my hair was long and permed for all of the 80's.
    wind (I hope you don't mind the nickname) - what to do with all those LPs? You can buy frames for the most artistic ones. Over here you can also buy large bags with plastic see-through side pockets where you display your collection. Would be cool were it not large and plastic!

  6. I was in a clothing store recently with my teenage daughters when 'Going Underground' came on the sound system. Nonchalently strolling around the t-shirt section, I started to boogie and sing along. Complaints from the teens followed and when I declared, 'But, it's The Jam, girls!' They told me that it was actually some band called Buffalo Tom. I aged instantly and am mortified that they're making covers of OUR songs.

  7. Now I know why my parents used to get so indignant when anyone did a cover version of Sinatra or Ella Fitzgerald! The nerve!

  8. Isn't amazing when clueless old mum actually knows the words to songs! I've got a 15 and a 12 year old too - but because i used to work in the music industry they don't mind awarding me a little more respect...God I love that Fleetwood Mac album Lx

  9. Thunder only happens when it's raining, Players only love you when they're playing.

    Oh, bother. I've got that on my brain for the rest of the afternoon now.

    The '80s. They were just fab.


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