Wednesday, May 21, 2008

There's No Heaven

Yesterday I wrote a piece about the American Idol finalists where I brushed on some of the reasons for my dislike of David Archuleta, the squeaky-clean young man from Utah and presumed winner. The first draft of that piece included the following few lines:

Take his rendition of John Lennon's "Imagine." He skipped straight to the last verse thereby eviscerating the heart of the song. No surprise really, with it's opening lyric "Imagine there's no Heaven, it's easy if you try." Not the stuff good Mormon boys sing about.
I cut that bit out because I'd already spent two paragraphs lambasting him, and thought enough was enough already (and if anything, subtlety and nuance are my watchwords). What I didn't know at the time was that Archuleta had decided to reprise his performance in last night's show.

When he originally sang the song a couple months back, judge Randy Jackson asked him why he skipped the opening verses of the song. Archuleta responded he only had a minute and a half and could only sing one verse, so he picked his favorite. He added, as he would do countless other times during the course of the show, that he thought the song had "a great message."

When he announced last night he was singing the song again, as his final performance, the first thing I asked was "Is he going to sing all three verses this time?" Not surprisingly, the answer was no.

For those not familiar, here are the verses of the song Archuleta chose not to sing:

Imagine there's no Heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

Archuleta opted instead to sing the third verse, the safe verse, and repeat the chorus three times. I wonder if he thinks the line about "no religion" is one that has "a great message" too.

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