Back home feels…odd…but awesome!

Hello people who have condoned me enough to read my blog! It has been a while, far too long in fact! I kind of fell off the radar with the Idols schedule and even more so as I went on “retreat”. So I have had to revise this blog post as it was originally intended to be published before my elimination. I have kept it mostly intact with most changes happening in the tenses and then adding a bit on the end:) So hear it goes:

Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (This is a ululation of excitement.)

I made it to the top freaking 8 …twice…! How freaking awesome! When I went for the auditions in February (thinking that if I didn’t make it through the audition, the Barnyard was having auditions the following Thursday) I never imagined that I would get so far:) The reality of having actually been there, on SA Idols, still hasn’t sunk in! I don’t know if the reality ever will! I’d like to start this post by saying a massive THANK YOU! to everyone who supported me. Without you I would never have gotten so far! So this is for you!!!:

Okay, so it’s been about 2 months since my last post and a whooooooole lot has happened! To be honest it all went so quickly that most of it is a fuzzy blur! (Kind of like a “memory” or “dream sequence” on a Soap Opera).

So here are a couple of highlights:

I got to stay in an amazing house which looks something like this:

It was originally in my previous post but I took it off because I thought they were going to do a thing about us living there but they didn’t really. So toughies. Also in the previous post was this picture I took of the Idols mascots who live at the house:

OKAY! Now that that’s taken care of we can continue! So the last few weeks of my Idols journey were kind of crazy! The highlights include that we took a trip to Ford to go and work on the designs for our cars! Each of the top 10 got to draw a design for the Ford Fiesta that the winner receives as part of their 1st prize. In addition to the winner getting a Fiesta, 1 lucky voter will win one as well! And it will be sporting the car design of the runner up! So in preparation for this eventuality we went and sat with the Graphic Artists who made digital mock-ups of each design. We were even given a poster of our car designs. It was pretty damn cool! This is what mine kinda woulda looked like:

I think it’s cool that we got to keep our posters:)

So, on one of the elimination days we were informed that we would be meeting the Belgian Minister President, Yves Leterme (Compliments of Wikipedia. I hope it’s right. He looked different in person to the picture on Wikipedia. If I am incorrect and I find out I will make an apology and a correction.) And now, looking at some other stuff on Google, he is also referred to as “Caretaker Prime Minister” of Belgium. Either way, he’s an important guy! We didn’t know what to expect, probably because none of us have really met with a foreign delegate of such importance. After his security force had sussed out The Mosaiek we proceeded to give him a kind of concert, each of us performing our song from Friday night. He seemed to enjoy it very much and after we’d finished he came up onto the stage to chat with us. He greeted each of us in turn and shook our hands and we all introduced ourselves. He chatted to me for a while about the competition and I found him to be a very pleasant man. I don’t know if my tone is too informal but I don’t know how else to put it. He was smiling at everyone and was exceptionally nice. It was an absolute pleasure to meet him:) Before he arrived we were joking that maybe he would bring us Belgian Chocolate (because …well… Belgian Chocolate = Yes.) and he actually did! They had brought two boxes of amazing Belgian Chocolate! It’s funny how Belgian Chocolate from Belgium tastes better than Belgian Chocolate from South Africa…

They really were amazing. This is NO exaggeration. So yes, that was our meeting with Minister President Yves Leterme of Belgium. One of the producers of the show told me there is actually a picture of him chatting with me in the Belgian papers. How cool is that? So, not that he will ever read this but still, a big Thank You to Minister President Leterme for meeting us, we hope you enjoyed your stay in South Africa 🙂

So those last few weeks on the show were pretty rough from a performance perspective. I had a bad run of performances, 2 weeks in a row! Some people would say I’ve had 3 bad weeks but personally I disagree, based on how I’ve felt about my performances. I think my performance of Outkast’s “Hey Ya” didn’t go very well. From my side I can say I know when it feels good and when it doesn’t. I expected to be in the bottom 3 with “Hey Ya” and was very surprised when I wasn’t. I think a lot of voters were backing me for trying to step out of my box and try something different. This is speculation on my part! It’s always hard to try and figure out what people do and don’t like because there are always a lot of mixed responses on Facebook and Twitter.

After “Hey Ya” was my Home Bru week performance of “Fine Again” by Saron Gas (Now Seether). It was, I think, my worst performance. A combination of, possibly, a bad song choice on my part (although a lot of people loved the choice) and the flu that was doing the rounds at the house. I know my sister and several of my supporters made a point of mentioning this on my fan page but I was not the only one who had been hit with it so I didn’t want it to be a voting factor. Either way, my performance was not great and it was reflected by me being in the bottom 2. I know a lot of people were upset that Phaksy was the one who had to sing for his life and not me. To be perfectly honest I was just as surprised as they were. I have great respect for Phaksy and while I was glad to have another chance, I was very sad to see him leave. In the house we all grew very close and we supported each other but we also knew that the inevitability of this show is that all but 2 will leave. It still doesn’t make it any easier to say goodbye.

After my 2 bad weeks came R&B week and I chose the song “Halo” by Beyonce. With this choice I felt the grey clouds lifting. All week long I felt amazing! I even decided to go back to my roots and play guitar. When I walked out onto that stage I felt calm, I felt like I could take over the world! (With OR without a Tank). I put everything I had into the song and it felt so good! I remember standing up after finishing and my cheeks were aching because I was smiling so much. Whether it was good enough was a different story, but I knew I had given it my all and THAT is what felt so good. And then the judges comments came. Please observe the illustration:

It sucked. I walked off the stage and couldn’t stop the tears from leaking out. I was trying my best not to cry but I couldn’t stop some of them from squeezing themselves out. Why did their comments get me so badly? Because I had felt the song, I had felt it so much and because I hadn’t made them feel it too I was disappointed with myself. Despite the Judges comments I got amazing feedback. The audience at Mosaiek seemed to like the performance and they boo-ed the Judges comments. After Sunday’s show I had many many messages telling me that they loved the performance.

Then came the results show on Tuesday and the viewers opinion was evident. I was safe. I was out of the bottom 3 and I was safe! So despite the judges not feeling my performance, a good portion of the voting public did. I can’t tell you how happy I was! And then the real twist came. Kelly was at the bottom. Her performance of Rock with You by Michael Jackson had received the least votes and she had to sing for her life. As contestants on the show we don’t only listen to what the judges said about us, we listened to what they said about everyone. We knew that if Kelly was ever at the bottom that the judges would save her, so I’m afraid it was no surprise to us when Gareth told them to stop the music. Several people, journo’s and fans alike, have asked both Dene’ and myself how we felt about Kelly getting saved and, I suppose, if we harboured any resentment. We have both kind of brushed this question aside for several different reasons. My first is that Kelly did not save herself. It was the judges choice to save her, she did not ask for it. My second reason is: what use are What If?‘s? Who’s to say what might have happened if they hadn’t saved her?

The week after Kelly’s save was Choir round. This is the one that I personally felt I was the least secure on. I didn’t know the song, I didn’t choose it. I’ve seen a lot of people discussing the circumstances of the choir round and the things I read made me very unhappy. There were people making fun of the choir, saying that they obviously chose songs that the choir knew and that’s why our choices were the way they were. There were people saying that some contestants obviously had preference because they had better songs than others. Here is what actually happened:

At the end of Sun City we were all asked to write down 2 choir song choices. If they were appropriate, 1 of our suggestions would be used. If neither were going to work they were going to choose for us. This is what happened to a couple of us. Our suggestions weren’t going to work. So essentially, we did choose our songs, but we chose badly so they chose better songs for us. Why? Because the choir had to learn the songs that we had chosen. I think, out of the 8 songs they had to perform for choir round, they new 2. And it takes time to learn 3-6 part harmonies.

So, I’m not going to go into it at length, but I was surprised that the judges liked my choir song so much. I think Randall was the most honest, saying that I couldn’t afford to have a bad week. I think that was him trying to say it wasn’t that great, but in a nice way…

Either way, it bombed. I knew as I was watching it along with the rest of the country that Sunday night, that I was more than likely going home. On Tuesday while we were getting ready for the show Dene’ and myself were chatting (the way we all do) and she asked me who I thought was going home. And I told her, very nicely, very calmly – I even said I wasn’t saying it to be mean, it was based on a gut feel and what I’d been reading on the social networks – that I thought it was going to her and myself going out tonight. I wasn’t really sure whether I should have said it or not but she took it like she knew it herself already. Usually when people asked me that I give them the “don’t worry, everything is going to be fine” speech. But Dene’ is my friend and like a younger sister and I wanted her to be ready, just in case. She is one of the most amazing people I have ever met and she better not forget to stay in touch otherwise I’m going to have to send her threatening letters in the mail!

Woooah! Excuse the lighting in this photo! It looked a lot better on my phone! Okay, so that’s all I’m going to give you for now!!! There will be more exciting tales of what I’ve been doing since I’ve been home (possibly before the end of the week even!) soon!

Thanks for reading! Love and cookies y’all!

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3 thoughts on “Back home feels…odd…but awesome!

  1. *Sob* Still missing you. Wanted you to be right at the top. 😦

    Love your blog – your sense of humour is priceless. And those pics, heh heh!

  2. Hey Erin, what can I say – you were my favourite right from the beginning and you still are – after you comes Dene – you were both fantastic and I feel like I know you both so well – please keep up with the music – I would love to finally one day meet you and hear you in person – so please keep us updated.

    thank you for entertaining us on sunday nights, and believe me, it’s just not the same without you

    good luck in your music career

    lots of luv
    Zandra Pretorius – from Ixopo

  3. Erin I know you might never believe me, but going to try anyway.
    You are unique! Fantastic!
    Adele, is the flavour of the day and you honestly beat her hands down
    you just HAVE to get those special songs
    something totally out of this world and new
    lyrics are 1 million a dozen – those we can pump your way like no one’s business, it is finding a composer to compose to your voice!
    Please dont give up and find that ‘perfect’ composer
    shout if you want lyrics.

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