Monday, July 07, 2008

what would Simon say?

"American Idol" finalist Ace Young got slammed on for performing in Pigeon Forge on the Fourth of July at StarJam 2008 while some of his castmates played nationally televised gigs. The fun would be spoiled for Harvey Levin and his crew if they knew that the crowd at StarJam numbered somewhere around 75,000. The fans were pressed in so tightly that the fire department had to hose them down. Oh yeah, Paris Hilton was there too.

As Terry Morrow mentioned in his blog, he and I talked with Ace in his tour bus. He had heard about the dig on TMZ but didn't mind because it meant that he was "on their radar."

During our conversation, the satellite TV in the bus was tuned to the Macy's 4th of July Fireworks on NBC. We saw Katharine McPhee singing "Save the Last Dance for Me" under an umbrella in Brooklyn. The fireworks were visible behind her. Earlier in the telecast Jordin Sparks sang her next single, "One Step at a Time." It was fairly obvious that Jordin's performance at Times Square was recorded on a night without rain.

When we got home from Pigeon Forge, my wife and I watched "A Capitol Fourth" on our HD-DVR. Taylor Hicks looked more like one of the congressmen in the audience than one of the performers. We cringed when he mugged into the camera like a cheesy lounge singer during a song called "Soul Thing." When he wasn't looking at the camera, we caught him looking at himself on the jumbotron several times. It got worse when he messed up the lyrics to "Dancing in the Dark" and went into the audience to select a dance partner in a pale imitation of Bruce Springsteen and Courteney Cox.

Of the four performances by Idol contestants that I saw on the Fourth, Ace's was easily the best. He won over the crowed with his original songs like "Addicted" and with one or two covers including a great version of "Dream On." Ace stuck around to meet his fans and sign autographs long after the post-concert fireworks. He is doing it the hard way by financing his own CD. I hope this nice guy finishes first, especially after what they wrote on

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Taylor Hicks - seen by 1/2 million people on the steps of the Capitol Building! He was AWESOME!!! I loved all three of his songs and is simply a terrific entertainer.

Ace Young - seen by 50 people in nowwheresville - he's a loser in every sense of the word.

Blogger Frank Murphy said...

I'll go ahead and publish your lame comment, Anonymous. Too bad you don't have the guts to use your name. Or the imagination to make up a fake one!

Blogger Byron said...

Nice write up Frank. Hopefully Ace will go far. I always root for the underdog.

Anonymous Linny said...

Frank - you ROCK! I won't mock Taylor, but I have been an Ace fan from the start and in one week his CD is going to shut up all of the naysayers. His music is awesome! So glad that you got to see Ace and you know just how good he is. One more week and the blabbermouths will be silenced and all we'll hear is Ace Young's music!!

Anonymous texas toast said...

Thank you, Frank. It's so nice to hear that Ace continues to impress. I heard his cd in full last night, it's incredible. Waiting for the July 15th cd release date is like waiting for Christmas.

Anonymous Trish said...

I wonder if people like you who write blogs know how much damage they do to a performer?

You are not hurting Taylor with your words, it is Ace who will suffer.

It is silly to try to have them compete. Why not just write about how good you thought Ace performed? Possibly even said a few kind words about the others. If you had, I probably would have checked out Ace and his new CD.. as it is... you have turned me off.

Anonymous Tracy said...

Thanks, Frank! Ace is a great, talented guy, isn't he? I'm proud to be his fan!

Also the CD drops in a week...JULY 15th! :-)

Blogger chocolatechic said...

Ace Young is an amazing entertainer and an even better person! He was great at StarJam, especially his first single "Addicted" and "Young Money"
I can't wait to buy his cd on the 15th!

Anonymous, since when is Pigeon Forge considered 'nowwheresville'? and 75,000 is a FAR cry from 50 people--it was packed there!
Who is Taylor Hicks anyway?
Thanks Frank!

Anonymous Jere said...

Taylor was flat through two of his songs, and although I loved it when he did the little dance on American Idol, it got old fast. Also, you didn't see Ace young in front of the huge crowd at Starjam, but he got them excited, which is a lot more than what you can say for the Capitol Fourth crowd. That lady did not want to get up and dance.
However, I have to say that the 1812 overture gave me goosebumps. It was GREAT! NSO ROCKS!

Anonymous susan11 said...

Susan11-Why do you guys just keep up with the silly comparisons just because they came from some dumb competition. I like Ace, he seems like a nice guy has a decent voice and I'm glad hes doing what he loves. I wish him well.
Taylor will be around when all the silly little critics have crawled back under their rocks. Great voice, wish he could have had his own band because they are extremely good. But for now , Taylor is busy on Broadway and they seem to love him there judging from all the articles I have read. New cds out this year and yes he did look wonderful.
Loved the suit, he looked great.
One of the olypians wrote about Taylor. He was very impressed.
I enjoy Taylor, hes just a really nice, hardworking and very talented man.

Anonymous Pam said...

Ace is a versatile and talented performer and TMZ needs to stuff a sock in it. I'm glad Ace has a positive attitude towards negative coverage. Thanks, Frank, for expressing your point of view. I've met Ace many times and he is a gem.

Blogger Sandy4Ace said...

Frank you're awesome and I'm glad you got to see how wonderful Ace is. My 16 year old daughter Candice and I have been a huge fan of Ace's since he walked on the American Idol auditions. We followed him through idol but it wasn't until we met him at our first idol show that we realized what an amazing performer he is. He is not only talented, but an amazing man with a huge heart. He treats his fans like none I've EVER SEEN!!!! Honestly, everytime we meet him I'm more impressed. We will be his fans forever supporting him in any way we can.

When I heard Ace's cd in full at a Border's book signing, I was blown away. There has NEVER been a cd release as impressive as this one. When Ace's drops on ....... July 15th, it will speak for itself and all those hateful, negative and mean people will be forced to shut up!

I'm not going to talk about the other performers. All I'm going to say is......

ACE IS GONNA ROCK THE MUSIC WORLD in just 7 days like no other performer before him!!!

Blogger Elly said...

Thanks FRANK
You Rock
I always have to laugh about the lame comments about Ace.
They have no idea what they are talking about.

Blogger eaglewatcher said...

Thanks Frank for the wonderful words about Ace. Those of us who have been fortunate enough to meet him know that he is not only a great talent (and pretty darn good lookin'), but he is a genuine, nice, down to earth guy, who is deeply involved with Children's Hospital, and who truly appreciates his fans. His CD is going to do great, and he deserves every success he gets!

OpenID dgottobed said...

Thank You for posting about Ace Young in your Blog. Anyone who has spent a minute with Ace knows exactly what he is all about. I am also looking forward to the release of his new CD. Ace has spent two years meeting his fans, and always has time for us. If just 5 people in every stop he has made by a cd he will do well.

Thank you Frank Murphy
I will look forward to reading your blog

Anonymous Donna_in_Birmingham said...

Hi Frank -- Thanks soooo much for your awesome comments about Ace Young ... He is a class act all the way, and I am sooooo proud of him and this new CD coming out on July 15th .... He's a true gentleman, a joy and a pleasure to meet in person, and his voice is downright heavenly .... I am a Highroller for Life !!!

And as for Taylor -- I'm from his hometown of Birmingham, AL, and I do love Tay .... But Ace won my heart in 2006, at the Bham American Idol concert, and I've never looked back .... Tay's a good guy and a decent performer, but ACE ROCKS, on and off the stage !!!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ace, Taylor and Kat are all friends and support each other in their efforts. It would be nice if their fans would do the same.

Anonymous Keefir1 said...

It was indeed and Idol 4th!
Good for Ace!
Loved Kat's performance of Save the Last Dance!
Did catch Taylor and to quote Randy....he was a bit pitchy.

Anonymous Jude said...

Thanks for the writeup, Frank! I hope others will realize what a talent Ace is when his CD hits the stores this month. As for Taylor, to each their own. He doesn't do it for me, but there are a lot of Ace fans who support Taylor and Taylor fans who support Ace, so it's all good. Well, except for the Taylor fan who said Ace was a loser--fans like that give Taylor a bad name.

Anonymous Adriane said...

Glad you had a chance to see Ace perform his new music LIVE on the 4th of July!! And Thanks for your positive input!! I have been an fan of Ace since Day 1!! He is the WHOLE PACKAGE!! And I know that Ace has worked with some of the BEST people in the this CD is gonna ROCK!! All of the naysayers will eat their words once his CD hits stores JULY 15th!! And to our "anonymous" shouldnt matter how many people show up at a gig or where a gig long as there are people there and as long as there are SMILES and APPLAUSE by the end of the day...that's ALL that matters!! ;-)

Anonymous Valerie said...

Great writeup, Frank! I've been a fan of Ace's since American Idol, seen him perform live a few times and had the pleasure of meeting him a few times as well. He hangs out long after other stars would leave, just so he can meet his fans, take pictures with them and sign autographs. He is definitely one of the most talented singers out there right now. He has amazing control over his voice when singing. His debut album is excellent. Here's hoping us fans can give him the boost he deserves! Plus, he's one of the sweetest people I've ever met. He is just an all around wonderful guy!

Blogger dreams4every1 said...

I was fortunate enough to be at the concert in Pigeon Forge, TN on July 4th. It was fantastic! I wish TMZ could have been there instead of watching everyone else on tv. All the idol participants are talented, no question about that. Ace Young, however, is talented and he is sharp. There was no better place for him to be on July 4th than in an all-American community that has millions of visitors a year. He obviously knows that you have to earn every at a time. Televised, scripted, programmed, high profile tv segments just don't cut it! He not only delivered an amazing performance, but he talked to his fans, earned new fans, and shared with us about his upcoming cd release set for July 15th. He was approachable, honest and stayed to meet everyone who wanted to meet him! I don't know of too many folks that would take the time to do that. To think outside the box, his decision to join us in Pigeon Forge also gave him access to websites that I'm sure have millions of visits regularly, the community has millions of visitors a year, and Star 102.1 gives radio play to his music. Now, it seems to me the return on his investment of time to hang out with us in Pigeon Forge, TN was much greater than other folks who really did only get 15 minutes of fame. Ace chose to be in Pigeon Forge, an all-American town loved by millions on an all-American holiday which gave him the opportunity as a free American to really connect with us, to talk with us and to share with us about his upcoming project and his art. I haven't purchased a music cd for a while, but I guarantee you I will be among the first to do so because I want to support a true American artist who appreciates spending time with folks like me.

Thank you, Frank!


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