February 3, 2012

Betty Buckley Calls Out Randy Jackson

Legendary Broadway singer/actress, Betty Buckley has had it with Randy Jackson dissing the "Broadway" style as if it was something inferior. She went on a fabulous twitter rant calling Jackson's comments ignorant and uninformed.

Idol watchers know that Mr. Jackson has been known to make comments that their sound is "too Broadway" as if it's a bad thing. Well, it all started again last week when contestant Angie Zeideran sang "When You Got It Flaunt It" from The Producers. After her song, Randy Jackson remarked "That showtunes.....that definitely.....it turns me off". Jennifer Lopez who was sitting right beside him actually looked at him strangely and was surprised about his comment. She then goes on to defend musical theatre singers and says that they are great talent. Mr. Jackson then comments "The problem is that it brings out that vibrato that I don't like".

La Buckley couldn't hold back any more and responded back with this AMAZING rant:

OK, I just have to say this: I am sick & tired of Randy Jackson bashing what they think is Bway singing! It’s soo ludicrous! I have yet to see or hear anyone sound remotely like they are a theatre singer on Idol!! And, further, theatrical singing encompasses every kind of sound, voice & style. He doesn’t know what he’s talkin’ about!! And by these constant disses he is tellin’ Amer. kids that Bway is some kind of inferior art form. Next to jazz, Broadway is the only indigenous Amer. art form & with respect, “Dog”, your opinion is whack & uninformed! I mean, I respect Randy Jackson & everyone certainly has their own likes & dislikes, but THIS constant diss of “Bway” sounding, to his ear, singers is just so ignorant & stupid that I literally cannot comprehend the producers allowing such mendacity in his remarks! Beyond idiotic!!!

And when Steven Tyler remarked, “They learn that”, I thought I was gonna scream!! All human voices have vibrato in one form or another! This constant STUPID reference is beneath contempt & I gotta say, too, that all big “rock/pop” shows these days are frickin’ THEATRE! SOOO, Nigel Lithgow & company, in a world that includes an increase in the popularity of musical in general in theatre, film & television. America Idol needs to WAKE UP to the truth, voices are voices, singing is singing in all forms, styles & genres. These categories have nothing to do with anything. The Record business in general is in big trouble & why for frickin’ sake would you the creators of “Idol” risk losing & demeaning any well intended audience. You respond to a singer because you hear their soul or you do not! ENOUGH!! I’VE HAD IT!!

O, while I’m at it. The use of melisma comes outa African American church & made most popular by Mariah Carey & comp. but mindless use of melisma does NOT a great singer make if it is random & without a true emotional intiation! I’ve really had it, people! Someone tell Lithgow! My point is that A singer is a singer is a singer & these frickin’ categories are bullshit!! Broadway smodway! Ridiculous!

Thanks for the “Amens”, Tweeties & Dopeys. Spread the word, please. Do not let these poor kids be so propaganized by a pop bass player with some pop recording success be the arbiter of what constitutes a supposed “good” singer! ENOUGH!! Aaaand….”world peace” Oh, & one more thing: Broadway is a place, not a style. At one time, in early days of classic Bway, Rodgers, Hamerstein, Hart, Lerner & Loew Gershwin, Tin Pan Alley & company one could say there was a style, a consistency in construct. But not any more. All kinds of composers and singers and styles on Broadway. And that’s been true since the 60′s. I would venture to say that the “Dog” & powers that be don’t get much. Write them, people, & tell them how absolute off frickin’ base this is! x

Nigel Lythgoe, the producer of American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance responds to Ms. Buckley's rant:

@BettyBuckley I don’t believe I have ever dissed Broadway either in IDOL or SYTYCD. As far as I am concerned it is a Mecca for talent.

@BettyBuckley I totally understand your point. The problem goes beyond Randy. ‘ Broadway’ has been adopted as a style of singing and dancing

I guess in the UK we we would call it a “show” voice. I agree GaGa, Freddie Mercury great show voices. You, Chenoweth, Katherine McPhee.

@BettyBuckley thank you I will certainly speak with Randy. I had the pleasure of seeing your outstanding performances in “Cats” and “Pippin”

Original Twitter thread here

Wow, all this in 140 characters! Ms. Buckley, I applaud you with my jazz hands! Brava!


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