Who is Aiden Grimshaw? Don’t worry if you don’t know his name. You will not have to remember it for more than 15 minutes. Aiden Grimshaw is a contestant on Britain’s X Factor. Last night Aiden Grimshaw sang “Mad World”, the very same song that Adam Lambert sang during Season 8 of American Idol. Simon Cowell’s remarks after the performance were, “Interestingly, this is the second time I’ve sat on one of these shows and been blown away by that song. It happened once in America and it’s just happened again tonight.” Simon Cowell did not mention Adam Lambert’s name but from the song and the set design it was obvious that Aiden Grimshaw and X Factor were attempting to replicate Adam Lambert’s amazing performance. The result was a big fail and Simon Cowell’s transparent attempt to manipulate the X Factor audience by suggesting that Aiden Grimshaw’s performance compared favorably to Adam Lambert’s “Mad World” backfired.
Links to both songs with judges comments can be found here: Adam Lambert & Aiden Grimshaw
In a recent article titled, “Simon Cowell mentions Adam Lambert on X Factor… ish” the writer posted the two versions of “Mad World”, Adam Lambert’s and Aiden Grimshaw’s. The one hundred and forty comments were almost unanimous, clearly favoring Lambert. Simon Cowell was obviously being disingenuous with his praise for Aiden Grimshaw. Simon Cowell is not a judge but a marketer promoting a product but he is obviously mistaken if he thinks that the audience is so naive that they can be convinced that Aiden Grimshaw equals Adam Lambert. I think it is impossible to watch and listen to the two performances and even suggest that they can be compared. I find that kind of funny and I find that kind of sad.
Aiden Grimshaw is an awkward kid whose voice lakes range and is off in pitch and timing. This performance was nothing more the hokey karaoke. Adam Lambert is a man with a polished and compelling stage presence and a voice that is perfectly controlled and hauntingly, breathtakingly brilliant. What is Simon Cowell thinking? Didn’t he get his own memo about Lambert having what it takes to be an international superstar?
Cowell told Grimshaw that his version of the song was “original”. Really Simon? The only thing original added by Aiden Grimshaw was the crazy eyes and the anger. If I were a teacher I wouldn’t want that boy in my class. Although it is correctly suggested that Adam Lambert sang the GaryJules version of “Mad World” Lambert had to edit the lyrics it to fit in the time constraints of American Idol. Word for word Grimshaw sang Adam’s edited version of Mad World and not the entire lyrics as in the Jules version.
The stage setting, a single chair with dramatic lighting and fog took from both of Lambert’s Mad World performances on American Idol. Aiden Grimshaw rose from the chair at the exact time Lambert did in his performance. Cowell went on to say that Grimshaw was currant and “Twilight”. In 2009 on the night of the final performance Cowell told Adam, “For some reason the fog the long coat I found it little bit over theatrical, reminded me of maybe Phantom of the Opera”. At that point Randy Jackson chimed in and said “not Phantom, but Twilight”. Simon Cowell now likes the fog, the drama and Twilight?
Simon Cowell’s contradictions are not because his taste in performances vacillates but because his intentions do. On the night of the American Idol final Cowell and Jackson both made inaccurate negative comments about Adam Lambert’s performance because the producers wanted it to appear that a contest was going on between Lambert and the other guy. This time Cowell wanted to escalate a very ordinary performance by comparing it to a phenomenal one. The most important thing garnered by watching these two videos is that you can’t trust anything Simon says. Why can’t reality contest be about the singing rather than audience manipulation?