If you live in the UK, the names Cher Lloyd and Katie Waissel will probably be very familiar to you. They have graced so many tabloid headlines that even those who don’t watch the “X Factor” will have heard about them. Amid reports that the two girls are locked in a bitter rivalry and have been fighting for the attention of their mentor Cheryl Cole, there is one thing people seem to be forgetting. Talent. Cher Lloyd and Katie Waissel were both selected to make the live shows, and love them or hate them, they both possess a certain something. Let’s analyse the girls and ask the question on everyone’s lips: Katie Waissel vs Cher Lloyd: Do either of them have the “X Factor”?
In the blue corner, we have Katie Waissel. Katie hails from Harefield in London and is twenty four years old. Prior to the “X Factor” she worked as a receptionist at a hair salon but has always had a passion for singing. Katie appeared on an internet reality TV show called Green Eyed World which showed her moving to America to make it as a singer. In the U.S, Katie recorded a jazz album under the name Lola Fontaine, and has also gone by the names Katie Vogel and Katie V.
Her first audition can be seen here. She branded herself as an 80’s lover and a big Freddie Mercury fan. She stepped onto the stage wanting to sing “At Last” by Etta James but Simon asked her to sing something else. On changing her song, she fluffed her lines and after much begging was allowed to sing her original choice of song. Katie Waissel was the centre of scandal when it emerged that she already had a record contract but lawyers got her out of it so she could appear on the “X Factor”.
Katie Waissel did well through the Boot Camp round of the show but disintegrated at Cheryl’s house when she tried to perform. This caused yet more anger when she was accepted to the live shows.
Katie’s first live show performance was “We Are The Champions” by Queen, for which she was given an insane outfit and crazy make-up. With the bad press surrounding her and the over the top image, she was put into the bottom three and almost had to leave the competition. She was saved by the judges.
Last Saturday, Katie came back with a much more understated look, singing “I’d Rather Go Blind” by Etta James. An all round stronger performance saw her safely through to the next round.
In the red corner is Cher Lloyd. Cher is seventeen years from Malvern in Worcestershire. As she is so young, there doesn’t appear to be much information about what she did before the “X Factor”, so we are led to believe that she hasn’t been out of school very long.
This is Cher Lloyd’s first audition. She appeared very cute and sweet until she began to sing. What came out was an impressive rendition of Keri Hilson’s version of Soulja Boy, packed with attitude. Cheryl Cole said Cher was right up her street.
Throughout Boot Camp, Cher Lloyd was reported to be withdrawn and nervous but every time she hit the stage she performed well.
When it came to the Judges Houses round of the competition, Cher Lloyd was struck by tonsillitis which rendered her incapable of singing. Again, surrounded by much public anger, Cher Lloyd also made it through to the live shows.
On the first live show, Cher performed “Just Be Good To Me” by the SOS Band . Styled like a rap brat, Cher sang quite badly but her ability to rap and the overall excellent stage presence saved her.
Last Saturday, Cher sang Jay-Z’s I”t’s A Hard Knock Life”, and her vocal was better, leading to her safely making it through to next week.
Do Katie Waissel and Cher Lloyd Have Talent?
Katie Waissel’s vocals
Katie Waissel has a soft, yet interesting singing voice, the kind possessed by the likes of Duffy, Pixie Lott and Paloma Faith. It lends itself well to jazz and soul and the aforementioned artists have done well in the pop genre.
Katie Waissel’s performance
In Katie’s first audition, she performed “At Last” so beautifully. But since she has been on the X Factor live shows there is something resembling desperation showing through. Passion is one thing, and always important to help bring the lyrics to life but Katie seems like she being overly dramatic. Either that, or she is having to dig deep to get the notes out.
Combining both elements of what is necessary to be a credible artist in the music industry, Katie could still do quite well regardless of how far she gets in the “X Factor”. With a little bit of time to find herself away from the media glare, Katie could very well surprise those who dislike her.
Cher Lloyd’s vocals
The sound of Cher Lloyd’s voice is absolutely unmistakable. There is not a single artist in history that has a sound like hers. Is this a good thing? In terms of remembering her – absolutely. But it’s not a great voice. It could be a lack of vocal training or simply that she is more used to rapping. There is a worry that she may be a one-trick pony.
Cher Lloyd’s performance
This is where Cher really comes into her own. For such a tiny girl, her stage presence is phenomenal. She commands every performance in a way that draws the eye to the TV and that is something that cannot be taught.
Cher Lloyd far outshines Katie Waissel in terms of talent from what we have seen of them so far. A reasonable vocal and a desperate performance is no match for an average vocal and an exceptional performance.
Tabloid fodder potential
Bad press has haunted Katie Waissel since the moment her face was seen on television. She was branded a cheat for getting through the “X Factor” even though she breached the rules, a sex fiend by an ex boyfriend, a diva for wanting her say on how she is dressed on the show, and many more things aside. She is a tabloid journalists dream.
Mostly, Cher has been in the press due to concerns about her mental health. She broke down after her first “X Factor” performance and has had tantrums during rehearsals. There have also been concerns over her weight. The worst press Cher has received were suggestions that she was a school bully which surprisingly, hasn’t harmed her popularity.
Katie Waissel is the clear winner here. It seems that no matter what she does from now on, she will always be interesting to journalists.
Do Katie Waissel and Cher Lloyd Have The “X Factor”?
This is the big question. They have undoubtedly overshadowed the other contestants in terms of publicity but that isn’t the same thing as having the “X Factor”. That requires talent, personality, likeability, staying power and that elusive spark that draws people towards them.
Katie Waissel certainly has personality, some talent and the interesting factor. Cher Lloyd equally has some talent and the interesting factor, though really seeing who she is as a person is challenging. In my humble opinion, to say they have the “X Factor” would be a stretch. Both girls possess a degree of star quality, but in ten or twenty years time I don’t expect they will have ever had more than ten hits between them – if that.
Just like most of the show’s acts, they are likely to be a fad for the next year or so until their popularity fizzles out and they go back to their day jobs – only to have their popularity later revived by a stint on “I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here”.
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