Monday, 22 December 2008

The Alexandra Effect!

Gosh, I'm still spinning from the excitement of last week's X-Factor finals that I've barely had time to blog...Okay, in truth I've been saddled with yet another horrid flu-ish, bug-ish thing that I've barely had enough energy to run a comb through my unruly afro, yet alone blog. Mmmm, so this conversation may seem just slightly redundant considering the event in question happened over a week ago, but bear with me. 

Yeah, she did it! Congratulations to my girl Alexandra Burke for winning the coveted X-Factor title. For those who don't know, the X-Factor is Britain's equivalent to American Idol which finds 10 eager wannabes battling it out week after week for a £1 million pound record contract. Along with Idol, the X Factor is also the brainchild of Simon Cowell, and a certified ratings winner here in the UK. 

So along with fellow contestant, Rachel Hylton, Alexandra was my favourite from the get go. The North Londoner is a mere 20 years old, but has a vocal maturity that belies her young age (think a little Gladys mixed with sprinklings of Mica and Toni Braxton). Throughout the live shows she gave consistently versatile and polished performances and quickly became the bookies favourite. The final showdown saw Alex compete with runners up JLS and Eoaghn. But after a show-stopping duet between the budding chanteuse and her American "idol", Beyonce, could there really be any other winner? Since claiming victory Alex’s debut single Hallelujah has stormed to the top of the UK charts, marking what I hope will be the start of a successful career.  

I'm not going to go into much further detail but will leave you with these random questions/ observations:

- Now that she's won do you think they'll turn her into another bland, ex-reality pop star that makes soppy, middle of the road music such as Lemar and Leona?

- And speaking of Leona, what's with the comparisons? So they're both young, women of colour, who both happen to sing really well. AND?? They sound nothing alike and have totally different personalities. SO STOP!

- Wasn't it refreshing to see pictures of a young black woman splashed across the front pages of the national newspapers, who wasn't a rape victim, thief, or young single mother who murdered her kids?

- That said, it was equally annoying to witness the whole sexualisation of a black woman in the tabloids, especially considering she’s so young. “Cheryl has banned me from having sex” read the headline in the Sun. On closer inspection Alex merely said that Cheryl advised her to abstain from boyfriends for a while.

- If, like me, your life was on hold for those three hours while you watched the finals, didn't you want to shake/slap/pinch Alex and shout 'pull it together girl' after her mini-breakdown following her Beyonce duet? Honestly, when she was announced as the winner I thought we were gonna witness a live cardiac arrest on national TV. It got a little worrying at one stage.  

Ah well, I guess that's all folks until next year. Here are my fav Alex moments...

Silent Night



Candyman



Listen

4 comments:

Shanti said...

YAY I was so happy too. I've had enough of the Leona comparisons as well, I agree that they are totally different. I read that Cowell and Co are planning on taking her down the Rihanna route - more edgy and dancey - which I think is a good idea, leave the ballad/choir choruses to Leona! Cannot wait to see what they do with this girl and I'm praying that they don't mess it up. Please, please, please........
xoxo

Harlem Loves... said...

Oh I think she'll do well as the UK's answer to Rihanna though I think she is way more talented.

Ondo Lady said...

I was so excited for her when she won. She is such an amazing talent and comes across as a wonderful young lady and a great role model for young Black women. Yes she did get star struck when she was performing with Beyonce but hey - this time three years ago she thought her dream of being a singer was over and now here she is in the final of X Factor and singing with her idol. How would you feel if you were 20 years old and that happened to you? I think I would explode into a zillion pieces. For her credit she did pull herself together and I really liked the bit when all the finalist ran on the stage to hug her. Now Cowell and co need to do their bit and give her some decent songs!!

Oh and about Lemar - you think he is bland? Really? I like him!!

Janice aka Miss Mad News said...

Hmmmmmm.....

But I wish Alexandra the best of luck.

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I am a thirty-something African Caribbean female from South East London. My blog will shine a light on Black British culture offering the best in entertainment, fashion, beauty, community, film & music, with the occasional personal musing thrown in from yours truly. Thank you for taking out the time to peek into the pages of my diary. Now grab a cup of cocoa, relax and enjoy.