May 4th, 2010
09:06 PM ET

A night of Sinatra tunes: Did we love it?

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Look at those five people above cause one of them is going home.

I really wish they could have Harry Connick, Jr. as the mentor every week. He really brought out some great performances from the Top 5 tonight. And the arrangements were superb.

So who do we think is going home? Was Casey James the weak link or did Crystal "MamaSox" Bowersox over play her hand by sassing the judges?

Is this year's "American Idol" going to be a man or a woman?


May 4th, 2010
08:06 PM ET

When Harry met 'Idol'

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8:54 p.m. – I totally see the resemblance between Harry and Lee DeWyze.

Lee sings "That's Life" and he makes it resonate. He's giving me a little Michael Buble with the hand gestures and the stroll. It worked well with the organ Harry was playing.

Great moment when Harry hugs him and then playfully pushes him off with a "That's what I'm talking about!"

Lee is going for broke and I love that.

Good Lord, I thought we might be able to go one week without being reminded that Lee worked in a paint shop, but it was not to be. No more, please!

8:43 p.m. – Nice look "Big Mike" Lynche.

He is rocking the hat. Me likey.

Harry is really working with these singers. I like his style in directing them.

"Big Mike" sings one of my favorites "The Way You Look Tonight." This is where I think the "Big Mike" ego will come in handy. Sinatra was no shrinking violet, and neither is our "Big Mike."

Even Harry has to give him some love for that vocal. It was fire!

Swagger, thy name is "Big Mike" tonight.

8:33 p.m. – Sir Anthony Hopkins is in the audience?

How freakin random is that?

Crystal "MamaSox" Bowersox sings "Summer Wind" and I love that she won't tell Harry why the lyrics mean so much to her.

She looks great in her dress and she sings that song like the rent is due!

Casey may not have been able to hear himself sing and nail the notes, but Crystal worked it out. I disagree with Randy: I thought she sounded pretty darn good.

Simon calls it "indulgent." These judges are tripping. MamaSox is one of the few this season who knows who she is as an artist and she knows what she wants to do with a song interpretation.

Way to do you, MamaSox. Even if you were a little sassy.

8:22 p.m. – They are giving Harry a lot of freedom and rightfully so.

He's a great mentor so far. The man knows his music.

How funny is it that one of Casey James' friends didn't know he's on "Idol" and called him for  a gig?

Casey sings "Blue Skies" and it starts a little rough. He seems super nervous and the band seems like it's overwhelming his vocals. When you are singing with this orchestra, you have to own the song.

Hmmm. I didn't love it. And his little vibrato irked me to no end. Casey is in trouble again.

And I think Ellen is gonna get in playful digs at Harry throughout the show. They are old friends, both being from the same city.

8:11 p.m. – What a wonderful reception for Sinatra's daughters Tina and Nancy.

They give Simon a monogrammed hankie that belonged to their dad. That is wicked cool!

Our first performer tonight is Aaron Kelly and he sings "Fly Me to the Moon." Sinatra was quite the teen heartthrob and I can see Aaron being one too.

He vibes well with the Harry Connick, Jr. trio, he looks adorable and he sounds pretty good. Very jazzy and not country like he usually rocks.

Harry looks on like he's waiting for some serious critique. I dare one of the judges to criticize the arrangements tonight.

I agree with Simon that Sinatra was the "King of Cool" and had swagger, but there is no way they can expect any of the contestants to match that tonight. There will only ever be one Sinatra.

8:06 p.m. – Harry says the Top 5 were "humble."

Yeah, they just ought to be.

I love Harry's N'awlins accent. And he is so tall and cute. Then again, just about everybody looks tall standing next to Seacrest.

Can you tell I totally have a crush on Harry? Something tells me I will be rocking the "When Harry Met Sally" soundtrack on the old MP3 player tonight.

8:02 p.m. – Wow. Harry Connick, Jr. has sold over 25 million records. He's awesome.

Very nice clips of Sinatra. He was such the man!

Harry is arranging the songs tonight. How cool is that?

Bear with me as I suspect I will be using the word "cool" a few times tonight.

May 4th, 2010
08:02 PM ET

'Idol' Sinatra night begins

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No one is cooler than Frank Sinatra.

Let's hope the Top 5 don't have old blue eyes spinning with some lame performances.

The show just started and Seacrest points out that there were over 100,000 potential contestants. And this was the best we could do this season?

Love, love, love that Harry Connick, Jr. said "This is American Idol"

Let's go.

May 4th, 2010
05:55 PM ET

Former CBS producer starts jail time for Letterman extortion

Robert Joel Halderman knew the jail time a New York judge would give him Tuesday when he was sentenced for trying to blackmail comedian David Letterman about the "Late Show" host's sexual affairs.

The former CBS news producer admitted guilt in March to attempted second-degree grand larceny in exchange for a promised sentence of six months in jail, five years' probation and 1,000 hours of community service.

After formal sentencing in Manhattan Tuesday afternoon, Halderman was escorted to jail to begin serving his sentence, according to a spokeswoman for the district attorney.


May 4th, 2010
05:17 PM ET

"Welcome to the Hollywood Walk of... oops!"

I'm a longtime copy editor, and I take the Metro to work.  As a result, I made one person laugh hysterically today, and another almost vomit.

Let me explain.

As I emerged from the Hollywood and Vine Metro station this morning and headed for the CNN Los Angeles bureau, I noticed two workmen cleaning off the newest star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for the 11:30 a.m. unveiling ceremony.  It was for Julia Louis-Dreyfus, star of "The New Adventures of Old Christine" – and the first "Seinfeld" alum to receive a star on the Walk of Fame.  I glanced at it as I walked by... then stopped, and peered more closely:

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"Um, excuse me," I said to the workmen, "but I'm pretty sure that star is missing an O.  And a hyphen." FULL POST

May 4th, 2010
04:27 PM ET

Bret Michaels released from hospital

Bret MichaelsBret Michaels has been released from the Phoenix, Arizona, hospital where he has been treated since suffering a massive brain hemorrhage 12 days ago, his neurosurgeon said Tuesday.

Doctors "are feeling pretty confident" that Michaels will not suffer another hemorrhage and will fully recover, Dr. Joseph Zabramski said.

The rock singer and reality TV star faces four to six weeks of rest before he can resume a normal schedule, the doctor said.

His road manager announced last week that Michaels might be able to resume his concert tour on May 26, but his doctor said he asked Michaels to take it easy.


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