Anastasia Blog

APR. 6, 2006


The remaining seven Nashville Star contestants were all so good, no one could have guessed who was going home last night.

I am shocked that Melanie Torres won't sing one more time; she is a strong singer and really comfortable on stage. She showed so much class when saying her goodbyes and I don't think we've seen the last of her.

I believe in Melanie and got to tell her so at the after party. My door is always open to her, as it is for every member of the Nashville Star family. We can't maneuver through this crazy world without help from our friends. But this is just the beginning for her, not the end.

Monique LeCompte is a good example of how this show can impact careers and lives even if you don't win. I received an e-mail last week from a casting director on the major motion picture "Hairspray" with interest in her talents. Having seen her on our show, they flew Monique to Baltimore last weekend for an audition. I'll let you know what happens in my next blog. Woo hoo!

Jared Ashley asked me what I meant by "you phoned in your performance," so let me explain. He is a seasoned performer and I am not discounting that. Yet when I watch artists like Brooks & Dunn, KD Lang, Phil Vassar, Chris Isaac, Mark Knopfler and Keith Urban (even before he got this record deal) I am either captivated or moved to dance or even cry.

In essence, I get totally caught up in their music because they are not just singing lyrics they are creating music and living it. While he didn't falter, I didn't feel uplifted by Jared's performance last night. Given the strength of the competition and the performances last night, I do feel that it might have been his last appearance on Nashville Star.

But if I'm proven wrong, I encourage Jared to dig deep and select a song that is nearest and dearest to his heart. Since I respect him, I really want to get into his music.

I honestly feel that Casey Rivers made a misstep in selecting "Great Balls of Fire." It hurt his credibility and pushed Chris Young ahead of him -- that's how important song selection is.

At this point, while I think Casey's voice is stronger than Jared's, they are in a dead heat. I sure hope Casey is able to write a great song, if not, his future with Nashville Star is on shaky ground.

I can almost write the same sentiment for Matt Mason as I did for Casey. While I've felt Matt was the male front-runner and ready for a record deal, he is now tied with Chris at the top of the heap. While he nailed the performance, Matt's voice did not shine with that song.

If Chris sings the same original song as he did at the regional competitions, Matt better have written an amazing song while in Nashville if he wants to win this competition! Now that Nashville Star has such strong talent, the difference between success and failure will come down to the song.

I'm proud of Kristen McNamara for singing "How Do I Live" so beautifully! I still stand by my sentiment that she has star power, I just wonder if she needs time to develop and overcome her stage fright.

My secondary comment about pulling back on the make-up is an easy fix. To counteract the red hues of the stage lights all she needs to do is lighten the color of make-up, and to open up her eyes, opt for a lighter eye shadow palette. And voila, her true beauty will be revealed to America.

Download These:
Nicole Jamrose's "Thing Called Love"
Kristen McNamara's "How Do I Live"
Chris Young's "Real Good Man"


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