Rising Star Recap: I Know It's Not Much… Is This the Best They Can Do?

It won’t be easy, but for the first three paragraphs of tonight’s Rising Star quarterfinal-round recap, I’m going to be unabashedly positive, determined to grab the reins and hold back any/all negative commentary. I won’t even take the easy road with deliberately neutral reporting like, “I saw Kesha’s side-boob” or “host Josh Groban wore socks emblazoned with carnivorous fish.”

Ummmmmmmmmm… sooooo…. let’s see here… Audrey Kate Geiger’s “New York State of Mind” was exquisitely phrased and deeply felt; if I’d paid money to watch her in some smokey jazz lounge (with two-drink minimum), I’d have left a happy customer. Better still, East Coast voters correctly put the two weakest contestants at the bottom of the eight-vocalist heap (though their choice for No. 6, Shameia Crawford, had damn well better get the West Coast save, despite her unfortunate oversinging).

OK, so one paragraph to go… Let’s hear it for Brad Paisley, who delivered a stinging “no” vote to perceived front-runner (AKA mortal lock for the finale) Jess Kinch, righteously insisting the kid dig deeper than “clichéd cover songs” like “Money (That’s What I Want)” and actually earn the victory that he all but sealed up three or four weeks ago.

Nice enough? It’ll have to do. Because now it’s time to weigh in on the eight remaining contestants in order from lowest percentage of viewer/judge votes — Brad, Kesha and Ludacris only contributed 3% each tonight — to highest.

(Side note: Good job, Kesha, voting “yes” to all eight contestants and proving yourself as indicriminate as you are inarticulate in the process!)

April Lockhart, “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” — Grade: F
27% (includng Kesha)

Maneepat Molloy, “Your Song” — Grade: D
46% (includng Kesha)

Shameia Crawford, “Skyscraper” — Grade: C+
53% (including all three judges)

Dana Williams, “Human” — Grade: C-
57% (includng Kesha and Brad)

Joshua Peavy, “American Woman” — Grade: D+
71% (including all three judges)

Audrey Kate Geiger, “New York State of Mind” — Grade: A-
85% (including all three judges)

Jesse Kinch, “Money (That’s What I Want)” — Grade: B-
88% (including all three judges)

Austin French, “House of the Rising Sun” — Grade: C-
89% (including all three judges)

What did you think of tonight’s Rising Star? Who were your faves? Did anyone get robbed? Does anyone deserve to “win”? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Kim Moores says:

    Paisley needs to give me a damned break.
    He’ll upvote God awful contestants then think he’s justified in down-voting Jesse?
    Nah, that downvote was unacceptable.
    Otherwise everyone was…meh.
    Josh needs to go home. Shameia will be saved by the west and we’ll call it a week!

    • daezyg says:

      I completely agree, but the thing is… His critic was on point. Jesse does need to prove he can be modern, and I’m a huge fan of his. I bet he’d rock “Sail” by Awolnation. That downvote was unjustified, though.
      I liked Mannepat and Shameia. I feel like Audrey’s a bit overrated, and Austin and Josh’s singing voice grates on my nerves.
      Well, I guess that’s pretty much it…

  2. Jeff Marley says:

    I wonder who will get the west save? My guess it’s between shameia and mannepeet!!! :)

  3. Jill Moy says:

    April is the new record holder of the worst singing performance in tv history! SIMPLY AWFUL!

    Weird ridiculous sounding Audrey an A -????????? Is that

    a joke???????? The singers get worse each week! Crawford was lucky to be saved! Another crappy performance.

    Jesse will win this farce for sure!

    • But yet Mr Cowboy (paisley) probably doesnt like The Beatles and that is why he down voted Jesse! But jesse still got one of the highest scores of the night even with Brads down vote!

      • The west coast save should’ve went to Shameia. Dana and Joshua shouldve been out a week ago.

        • I dont know that ANY of them deserve to go through but LOL they have to work with what the have got on this show! Jesse is the only one I like! Joshua sucks bad!

          • Jill Moy says:


            Remember when Macy Kate was robbed? Brad walks over to Brad while the singingwas going on with the other singer and that EXACTMOMENT, Luda voted yes! So many unethical things have been on this show! She just beat Macy out with that yes vote! A real bunch of crap! Since when does a judge walk over and say something to a fellow judge while a contestant is singing? Didn’t anyone see this? I didn’t like Macy but fair is fair! All the judges are jerks!

          • Yes I saw that and thought it was quite rude! Im not liking Brad Paisley at all! I cant believe he down voted jesse and then told him to do current songs when the other 2 males did House of the Rising Sun and American Woman which are also both old songs! NOT CURRENT EITHER. But Brad didnt say a damn thing to either of those guys!

    • BrazenSongBird says:

      Jesse is my favorite of this bunch hands down (some of that may have to do with where he’s from??), but I agree with Brad that Audrey is a star in her own right. You may not like the sound of her voice, but don’t you agree that she’s a good singer? I’m also guessing that the sound of Fantasia’s, Nell Carter’s and the Lady Day’s voice also drive you crazy? That’s fine, but also realize that if you like the sound of Audrey’s voice, an A- for that performance was definitely warranted. And Mr. Paisley was right to call out Jesse on that song choice, but I think giving him a “down” vote was taking it too far. Once that intro was done, it was a straight I, IV, V, I jam and he’s capable of so much more.

      • Jill Moy says:

        How can a person not like singer’s voice but think she’s a good singer! What a statement….MAKES NO SENSE!

        • BJ says:

          Sometimes it can be a case of a voice being good, just not to your taste. I don’t enjoy female diva voices (Whitney, Mariah, Celine) but I can respect they’re good, just not to my taste, for example.

        • BrazenSongBird says:

          It absolutely makes sense. You can be objective about it…they have technical skill, they have great phrasing, they’re conveying the meaning of the song, all of that, but, personally, the tone of their voice is a turn off. I believe that person could still be considered a good singer. If people tell me that they like my voice, I was born with that and really can’t take too much credit. However, if they tell me that I’m a good singer then I take that compliment to heart because I know that I’ve put in the work. It is semantics, but it does make sense. And, Audrey must be appealing to a good portion of the viewers since her numbers have remained pretty high throughout the competition. Perfect example, I like Audrey, but I’m not crazy about Fantasia (sorry Mike!), but I also recognize that Fantasia is a fantastic singer and Audrey (so far) is a good singer.

      • Jill Moy says:

        BECCA, Meant Brad walked over to Luda!

  4. big cheddar says:

    To be honest, the only person on this show I’d ever pay to see is Jesse. I think the final two will be Jesse and Austin.

  5. Jill Moy says:

    I was wrong! Crawford was not saved! As I said on last blog, April and Crawford will go this week! I said how overrated Crawford was and had people criticizing

    me! Well, they’re gone as they should be! April was NEVER good…period! Crawford had crazy vibrato! Audrey is weird with her cartoonish shrieking voice…UGGGGG!

    • Kim Moores says:

      Last blog was 2 weeks ago mind you. You said Shameia would be gone last week. She stayed.
      Congrats on being wrong and being too thickheaded to own up to it though ;)

      • Jill Moy says:

        I’m so sorry! I probably said she’d go! If I said the following week I was wrong! I don’t think I said that! If so….OK, shoot me!

        Bottom line, another overrated bad singer is gone, no matter when it was! She was saved once before! She thinks she’s great! It was priceless the look on her face when she was eliminated…TOTAL SHOCK! SO LONG MS. CRAWFORD!

        • Austin sang an OLD song too. House of the rising sun is not current but no one said a word to him about it. But they told Jesse to do something current? Why only pick on one singer?

          • And American Woman is not current either! Only Jesse was told off about doing a more current song! NOT FAIR! Joshua Peavey was terrible doing American Woman. Nobodys version is as good as THe Guess Who’s version! Paisley can go eat some cow crap!

          • Jill Moy says:

            Austin stinks Becca!what a weird goofy sound.

          • Jill Moy says:


            On AGT, I feel the singer who was in the military isn’t that good! If he goes through tonighthe’all be taking up a space for much better talent! Last night was the best talent show episode ever…..EVERYONE WAS GREATexcept him!

          • That is exactly what I was thinking! I have not really been liking the military guy! The guy with the dog is soooo good!

        • Anyone with the last name CRAWFORD should get the wire hanger! LOL

        • Yashmal Yah Shaka Rah says:

          If Shameia is an over rated bad singer, then Rising Star is an over rated bad show, with an over rated bad cast!

  6. Colton Smith says:


  7. Colton Smith says:


    • Jill Moy says:


      We always disagree! April is a horrible singer! She admitted she has no range and sounds like nothing I’ve heard before, just awful! She simply can’t sing….period!

  8. Dee says:

    April’s performance and song choice was so horrid that I almost feel like she purposely bombed so she could leave the contest. That’s the only reason that can justify her being that bad. It was so bizarre, it was like she wasn’t even trying.

    Not surprised Shameia left. I liked her in the beginning but she oversang everything she did and showed that she can only sing-shout. I was glad Brad pointed that out to her even though it seemed she didn’t like the criticism. She really needs a lesson in vocal dynamics, always shouting a song doesn’t mean you’re singing it. Maybe it stems from her insecurity as backup singer, I dunno.

    Audrey is my girl! She rebounded beautifully from last week. She’s the dark horse in this race, I know she won’t win but I truly hope she gets a record deal. I don’t think she’s overrated, she’s got a great unique sound but it wouldn’t hurt for her to get some vocal training down the road.

    I thought Josh did a great job with American Woman. Austin was good as usual, I’m sure his soulful sound, newleywed status and good looks will send him to the finals. Maneepat is boring. And she was off-key for most of her performance. Dana still has no stage presence after 7 weeks. She’s too closed off in her performances, that’s why she scores so low.

    Jesse sort of bored me this week.Song choice was bad. I hope he’s not getting too comfortable and planning on coasting to the win because that would be a mistake. I love him but he needs to show something new musically or people wlll get bored quick.

    • Jill Moy says:


      I never thought April was good andI said from day 1, Crawford shouted and screened with a crazy vibrato! You are spot on! April was horrible! Worst song choice ever! What a dud!

      • Jill Moy says:


        Nobody loses on purpose! She tried to be cute and it backfired! She stinks anyway! Audrey has a creepy, crazy voice! Record deal….A COMEDY RECORD LABEL, perhaps!

  9. Joshua Peavey Or Manapeet will be going next week! That is my prediction!

  10. Think about this! Remember the first year of x factor? It was soooo Great! Josh Krajik, Stacy Francis, Astro, Drew and many others! So much talent! I know it went downhill after that, but I was hoping the first year Rising Star was on, that it would be excellent the way the x factor was! Boy was I wrong! Incredible flop!

    • Jill Moy says:


      I agree with all your comments! Jesse was as good as usual and the guy who got the highest % sounded weird to me! These singers are comedians, except Jesse! Wasn’t APRIL wonderful??????? OMG!

      • Colton Smith says:

        All the voters for austin and macy and april , so on are wrong and only you are right??
        If Soulful And powerful voice like austin sounds weird to you , so i dont know what you think is a really good voice

        • Jill Moy says:


          I do know what I’m talkin’ about! The viewers are tone deaf (most of them)! We have the weirdest sounding singers ever! Why don’t they save $ and just make Jesse the winner! If he loses, the show is a sham!

      • Austin only got 1 or 2 points higher than jesse, but jesse got a big fat no from Brad and still scored very high! Oh yes! April was just WONDERFUL LOL LOL LOL The theme is Look what the cat dragged in. As simon cowell would say “It sounded like 3 Sick cats crying in the back alley!

        • Jill Moy says:


          Like mating calls of a cat! I can’t believe a terrible singer (did I say singer) could make the top 8 on ANY SHOW, even a kids show!

          I never knew there was such a terrible singer alive!

          • She makes all of the singers on AI ( that we did not like) seem like amazing singers! Jena and Jess for instance! The mating call of cats is right!

          • Jill Moy says:

            H BECCA,

            Well, guy in military went through on AGT! He isn’t that good! Little 9 yr old piano play was cut! It didn’t help he made a cocky remarklike a smart a*s! That turned off voters!

        • Jill Moy says:


          Did you see the kid Curled go through on AGT, when acts twice as good were eliminated! I hate when a person goes through because of a sad back story! I never thought he was very good! BUT….OUR GIRL MARA JUSTINE IS STILL ALIVE TO WIN!

    • Jill Moy says:


      At least X FACTOR had some good talent each year! This show keeps hitting rating lows each week! I think it will be cancelled after this one season! Too bad as It made me laugh out loud, listening to all the comics!

      • Ya Jill I just thought the first season would be great, because usually they are! The voice was good, and x factor had a great first season! If this show is starting on such a terrible note in their first season, then it is a bad sign! and I DO miss the x factor bad! It was always interesting and had mostly great singers!

        • Jill Moy says:


          I always liked X FACTOR!

          Well, kid with foster parents and military guy went through! Real shames….not good singers!

          AGT is still a great show with great talent! This show is crap with horrible judges Brad and Kesha! Even Luda sometimes gives dumb reasons on his vote choices! NICKI MINAJ
          …… WHERE ARE YOU?????????

          • Another horrible night Jill! Josh Peavey was horrible! And Manipoop went home Good! Jesse has to win! I have been watching the Michael Brown case on CNN and I am Hooked into it but managed to break away and watch the crappy rising star! LOL Now Back to CNN

      • God Yes x factor had great singers with great personalities! I fell in love with everyone on season1. And im going to miss simon! Oh But I did not fall in love with Paula’s groups, they were awful!

  11. BJ says:

    Most of the show was very meh to me. NY State of Mind and Your Song are so iconic that they’re a hard sell for me. Maneepat, while cute, didn’t seem to understand the spirit of the song. And while I’m an unrepentant Jesse fan, he needs to mix it up more. He doesn’t want to be known as “classic rock” guy when he has so much talent and could probably mix a lot of things up. He needs a moment like Will Champlin’s on the Voice where he just OWNED At Last, and there’s not a much more iconic song than that. Kesha’s comments were just so inane at times, irritating.

  12. Mary says:

    After the very first show I stopped watching. I thought only being a hour last night I would give it a try hoping only the good contestants were left. After the first couple of performances I gave up. Honestly are these the best of the bunch. I believe this show will be a one and done.

  13. Alienate says:

    Wow! looks like all 28 viewers have commented. I only read these recaps because of The Sleeze.

  14. I’m longer watching this show because Shameia, Lisa and Karen aren’t on there. I agree with Brad, Jesse is to cliche oldie. I don’t get why people like shouting and screaming.

  15. Jill Moy says:


    Fantasia sounds like an overgrown, creepy, babbling baby! Her voice is like a child’s! I never got the attraction…EVER! How Simon liked her is beyond me! She is the most overrated singer in history!

  16. Jill Moy says:


    You said Austin has a powerful voice! Are you a comedian? He has no power….PERIOD!,

  17. Jill Moy says:


    Sorry, misspelled your name.

  18. Jill Moy says: