Bisexual wonder Danyl Johnson wowed The X Factor 2009 Live Show 8 judges and audience on Saturday night (11-27-09) by performing killer renditions of “Relight My Fire” and “Your Song” during the "Elton John/Take That" Week, in spite of talk in the tabloids that judge Dannii Minogue has grown weary of Danyl’s backstage tantrums and “Diva-like” behavior. And even though London’s The Mirror claimed the contestants were feeling stressed because they now have to sing two songs per show, all appeared to be at ease on the fun-filled Saturday Live Show 8, as well as Sunday’s Results Show 8.
The 2009 X Factor judges (Simon Cowell, Dannii Minogue, Louis Walsh, and Cheryl Cole) make a fiery entrance at the beginning of the Live Show 8 on Saturday night. 11-28-09 photo
And while I’m at it, I may as well tell you that all the Tweets and Diggs about Olly Murs and Stacey Solomon having a falling out or breaking up are also untrue, as you can’t split up with somebody you’re not even going out with! The British gossip rags print bull about them on an almost daily basis. Saturday's "news" was that Olly had just dumped Stacey. The non-couple shared a good laugh about it after the Results Show on Sunday.
This week, the X Factor website revealed which tunes make The X Factor contestants head to the dance floor to get their groooooove on. For Danyl, they are:
1. "Like I Love You" - Justin Timberlake
2. "Let Me Be Your Fantasy" - Baby D
3. "Love, Sex, Magic" - Justin Timberlake
4. "Shine - Take That"
5. "Slave For You" - Britney Spears
Danyl Johnson rehearses his numbers for the X Factor Live Show 8 Saturday afternoon. 11-18-09 photo
Each finalist had to sing two songs, one from gay icon Elton John’s massive song book and a selection from the repertoire of Take That, one of Britain’s most successful boy bands.
Our favorite 27 year-old Reading school teacher, Danyl Johnson, kicked off the show with his first upbeat song in the pageant, complete with an energetic and sizzling dance number, “Relight My Fire.”
Danyl Johnson gets the X Factor judges' reactions after singing "Relight my Fire." 11-28-09 photo
“What a great start to the show!” Louis Walsh stated. “I’m glad you’ve got your Mojo back! Round one you won!” That Louis is a regular poet!
Although Dannii Minogue said she didn’t like his “body rolls,” whatever that means, she did say it was an “amazing performance!”
Cheryl Cole was beside herself. “I know how difficult it is to sing and dance at the same time and you made it look pretty and effortless!”
Photo of Danyl Johnson at age 9 with his mother Maria Burgess. He hasn't changed one iota!
“You were perfect!” Simon told his protégé. “You’ve proven you can do anything!”
My take: Wonderful presentation! Full of energy without being cocky!
Next up Lloyd Daniels, 16, who reportedly threatened to quit last week after being dissed by the judges, performed his version of the Take That classic “A Million Love Songs.”
Lloyd Daniels sings "A Million Love Songs" at Saturday's Live Show 8 with the help of male backup singers. 11-28-09 photo
Louis Walsh continued his long-running cruel critique of the young Welshman. “I think you’re much improved but you’re still not great.” He also said Lloyd would struggle for votes tonight.
Dannii Minogue told Lloyd, “There’s a million girls out there that want your phone number! You always bounce back. A little off in the verses though.”
Lloyd Daniels tries to take the judges' criticism in stride during the X Factor's Live Show 8. 11-28-09 photo
Simon Cowell remained unenthusiastic. “Look, it was a good choice of song—a teen pop song—and you sang it okay but it was a little bit mechanical. You have to have fire in your eyes.”
Cheryl Cole, Lloyd’s mentor, tried to reassure him. “On your second song, you are going to come out and absolutely show them!”
My take: Good. Sweet. Cute. But not great.
Danyl Johnson tries to keep the bullsh*t off his head with a gossip rag backstage while Lloyd Daniels appears worried about his fate, perhaps with good reason. 11-28-09 photo
Then, with a baby grand piano in the background, 25 year-old Olly Murs performed a heart-breaking version of “Love Ain’t Here Anymore,” melting hearts far and wide, I’m sure.
Olly Murs sings "Love Ain't Here Anymore" on The 2009 X Factor Live Show 8 on Saturday. 11-28-09 photo
“I can’t believe you were in the bottom two last week,” Louis Walsh purred. “I’m glad you’ve got your confidence back. You deserve to be in the finals.”
Dannii Minogue said, “I admire you for getting back on the horse, but the sparkle wasn’t quite in the eyes in that performance.” What? Is she blind herself?
Olly Murs performs karaoke earlier in the week at the X Factor house. 11-24-09 photo
“It was really lovely,” cooed Cheryl Cole. “You’re back in your stride again!”
Olly’s sponsor, Simon Cowell, was enthusiastic. “You did a great job. You emoted the song well.”
My take: Loved it! Nice, clear vocals! I nearly cried.
Joe McEdlerry, 18, then tore the house down with a fantastic “Could It Be Magic.”
“Every week you get better and better,” said Louis Walsh. “You deserve to be in the final showdown.”
“You are flying high,” beamed Dannii: “You absolutely smashed it!”
Simon Cowell said, “It was brilliant! That production was absolutely fantastic!”
Cheryl Cole, Joe’s sponsor, minced no words. “What can I say? It was flawless!”
My take: Clear, powerful vocals! I fear he’s going to win!
The last girl in the show, Stacey Solomon, 20, then proceeded to impress the judges by singing the 2007 hit “Rule the World.”
“Nothing changes,” said Louis Walsh. “I like you every week. You absolutely did it for me!”
After praising Stacey in her largely undecipherable Geordie accent, Cheryl Cole said, “I’ve got to give you credit for singing a guy’s song, Stacey, as the low notes are not easy. You’re the only girl left. Represent!”
Simon Cowell said, “Very believable. Perfect song choice. Better than last week.”
Naturally, Dannii Minogue supported her protégé. “ Amazing performance! You’ve grown from week to week to week.”
My take: Not impressed. She was slightly off tune, especially at the end.
Danyl Johnson arrives for rehearsal. 11-15-09 photo
The second half of the show was dedicated to the music of Elton John.
After surviving two sing-offs, Lloyd Daniel’s “I’m Still Standing” appeared dangerously prophetic, although he gave it his all, strutting around the stage with a gang of cane-wielding dancers.
Looking dapper in a coat and tie, Lloyd Daniels sings "I'm Still Standing" for his second number at the X Factor's Live Show 8 Saturday night. 11-28-09 photo
As usual, Louis Walsh didn’t like Lloyd’s singing. Shaking his head, Louis quipped, “Round two: It just didn’t look like you were having a good time. It was nice but we’re not looking for nice any more. We’re looking for a star.” Ouch!
Dannii Minogue said, “Fantastic production but still shaky vocally.”
“Silly song choice,” Simon Cowell stated. “It wasn’t as good as the first. The retro routine didn’t suit you or the song.”
Lloyd Daniels dons a Beret, an iPod, and a smile backstage at the 2009 X Factor Live Show 8. 11-28-09 photo
Cheryl Cole moved in like a mother hen. “I’m very proud of you for continuing to deliver after such criticism week after week.”
My take: Poor guy was flat, I’m afraid. He’s outa here. Loved the shirtless male dancers, though!
Then our man Danyl Johnson went back to his roots and delivered the Elton John ballad, “Your Song,” backed by a 16-member children’s choir, showcasing his amazing vocal range.
Danyl Johnson gave a golden peformance of "Your Song" during the second half of the 2009 X Factor Live Show 8 Saturday. 11-28-09 photo
“I loved everything about it except the choir!” Louis Walsh exclaimed. “You get criticized week after week but always bounce back. With your voice and looks, you don’t need the choir.”
Dannii Minogue’s praise was tempered, as usual. “Great version, much better that the first song.”
Danyl Johnson spends some time with his backup choir Saturday backstage. The youngsters don't seem to be upset about Louis Walsh's negative comments. Maybe they're all hyped up on sugar! Check out those cans!11-28-09 photo
“You look like you’re back!” said Cheryl Cole, usually Danyl’s strongest critic. “We are seeing the Danyl we first fell in love with at the audition process.”
Simon glowed. “It was sensational! That’s what it’s all about!”
My take: Great! Loved it! Elton John should be marching in a pride parade!
Olly Murs and Danyl Johnson return to the X Factor house after doing some shopping. 11-25-09 photo
After finding himself in last week’s bottom two, Essex resident Olly Murs gave it his all with a spirited rendition of Elton John’s “Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting,” which he characterized as Elton’s “butchest song.”
Surrounded by female body-builder-dancers, Olly Murs sings "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting" at the X Factor Live Show 8. 11-28-09 photo
Louis Walsh, however, was not impressed. “I like your funny dancing and I like you but something is missing.” Don’t you just hate nonspecific criticism?
“Round one was okay, but round two was an absolute smash!” Dannii Minogue yelled, as the crowd chanted, “Olly, Olly, Olly!”
“I agree with Dannii,” Cheryl Cole declared. “Knock-out performance!”
Olly Murs poses with some fans backstage during The X Factor's Live Show 8 episode. 11-28-09 photo
“Great song. Great performance. You put your heart into it,” Simon said to his student. “I’m very, very happy with you.”
My take: Good job! Enthusiastic and fun! Better than his earlier performance. I even loved the muscular female dancers!
Dannii Minogue appeared animated. “There hasn’t been a song sung with more passion!”
“I’m absolutely gob-smacked by that!” stated Simon Cowell. “Beautifully sung! My favorite ever of yours!”
Joe McEdlerry puts crackers over his eyes while joking around in the X Factor kitchen. 11-28-09 photo
“You make me proud to be a Geordie,” mentor Cheryl Cole declared. “You deserve your place in the final.”
My take: Excellent! He just gets better and better. The vocals are ethereal!
Joe McEdlerry and Stacey Solomon with two of the kitchen cooks after what looks like the aftermath of a food fight! 11-28-09 photo
Stacey Solomon wrapped up the evening with her version of the wedding classic “The Way You Look Tonight,” but took it over the edge by lying atop a white sheepskin rug on a grand piano in a red gown.
Louis Walsh said, “I’m not crazy about the song choice but I like you an awful lot.” Who Walsh likes is a bit irrelevant, is it not? I mean, I thought he was looking for a star, not a friend!
Cheryl Cole thought Stacey did well under the circumstances, saying “You looked a bit uncomfortable in parts, but you did a good job.”
Simon Cowell was more to the point. “The song didn’t do you justice.”
Backstage, Stacey Solomon shows off somne of the "perks" of being on X Factor: a free key ring and a mug. 11-28-09 photo
“I really, really loved it,” said Dannii Minogue, coming to her protégé’s defense. “I don’t know what Simon is talking about.”
My take: Rather bland. The theatrics over shadowed Stacey Solomon’s singing.
And so the evening came to an end. My guess is either Stacey Solomon or Lloyd Daniels will get the axe tomorrow night at the X Factor 2009 Results 8 Show. From this point on in the contest, the losers will be determined solely by public vote. The judges will no longer have any say, other than input. And there will be no more bottom two with sing-offs. The finalist with the fewest public votes will simply be eliminated. The poor guy/gal will then repeat one of her/his final numbers from the previous Live Show at the end of the Results Show. Comprende?
The final five contestants share a laugh after performing "I Don't Feel Like Dancing" at Sunday's 2009 X Factor Results Show 8. 11-29-09 photo
Sunday’s X Factor Results Show 8 show kicked off with a bang thanks to the finalists’ upbeat group performance of the Scissor Sisters’ hit “I Don’t Feel Like Dancing.” Sporting colorful, casual outfits, the contestants, bounced around the stage with gusto.
We were then treated to an Alicia Keys medley (“Empire State of Mind,” “Doesn’t Mean a Thing,” and No-one!”) from her fourth studio album, Element of Freedom, due to hit stores December 14, 2009. Sporting a stunning strapless red body suit and silver choker, she received a standing ovation from the audience and the X Factor judges.
Alicia Keys poses with the 2009 X Factor finalists on Sunday. 11-29-09 photo
Then host Dermot O’Leary asked the judges which finalist they thought was at risk. Simon Cowell answered, “Lloyd,” while Dannii Minogue and Cheryl Cole said, “Everyone!” As expected, Louis Walsh put the finger on Lloyd Daniels. “Lloyd’s lovely, but it has to be Lloyd.”
X Factor judges Cheryl Cole and Simon Cowell at Sunday's Results Show 8. Note the red AIDS ribbons they are sporting for HIV awareness. By the way, they are NOT a couple! 11-29-09 photo
Like Alicia Keys, Rihanna got the audience to their feet with her jaw-dropping performance of “Russian Roulette,” from her new album CD Rated R, which dropped November 23, 2009. She looked lovely in a short beige dress with big shoulders, matching gloves, and a red-gold necklace while sitting in a rotating ornate arm chair, a fake white fur coat draped over her shoulders.
Rihanna sings "Russian Roulette" during Sunday's X Factor Results 8 talent show. 11-29-09 photo
It was then time for host Dermot O’Leary to recall the contestants and announce who made it through to next week’s semi-final. “You can cut the tension in here with a knife!” he said. “But it’s time to face the music cut!”
“The four acts through with the most public votes are—in no particular order—the first act through is . . . Stacey Solomon!” Uh oh! It looks like Lloyd’s screwed!
Dermot continued slowly. “The second act definitely singing in next week’s semi-final is . . . Joe McEdlerry!” No surprise there!
X Factor judges Louis Walsh and Dannii Minogue looking good at the Sunday night Results Show 8. 11-29-09 photo
“And the third act returning next week is . . . Danyl Johnson!” Hallelujah! Our man made it through again!
Okay, so now it’s down to Olly Murs and Lloyd Daniels. After more long pauses, Dermot O’Leary went on. “The last act through to the semi-final is . . . Olly!”
So poor little Lloyd Daniels finally got axed. O’Leary then had to ask the obvious question, “How do you feel, Lloyd?”
Host Dermot O'Leary and mentor Cheryl Cole flank Lloyd Daniels after learning Lloyd received the lowest number of votes and would be going home after the Sunday night X Factor Results 8 Show. 11-29-09 photo
Lloyd kept a cheerful-looking face. “I just want to be recognized!” he declared. No problem there, thought I!
Lloyd repeated his Saturday performance of “A Million Love Songs,” a much better choice than his other number, “Still Standing” I thought!
After the show, Rihanna stated that of all the contestants, Joe McEdlerry’s “strong vocals really stood out” for her, a sentiment echoed by many critics.
Danyl Johnson needs our votes. Do what you can to keep his dreams alive. He is a performer extraordinairee and deserves our support! Spread the word! 11-21-09 photo
Next weekend, for the X Factor UK 2009 Live Show 9, we will have the battle of the Final Four and guess what, kids? On Sunday’s December 6th Results Show 9, gay icons Lady Gaga and Janet Jackson will perform! The show will feature Ms. Jackson’s only UK performance of 2009 and Lady Gaga’s first ever peformance of her new single “Bad Romance” on UK television! Be sure to check back for the photos and videos!
Visit Danyl Johnson’s official website and Facebook page. Visit Twitter if you want to get tweeted. Also check out Danyl Johnson’s official X Factor page, where you can hear him sing a rockin’ rendition of “Mustang Sally.” To read all of our posts with more fantastic pictures and videos of Danyl, click here and here.
Check out The X Factor 2009 Video - Lloyd Daniels sings “A Million Love Songs” - Live Show 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 18 Nov 28, 2009. The X Factor UK 2009: Vocals can be very exposed during a ballad, so is Lloyd's voice up to “A Million Love Songs”? See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Watch The X Factor 2009 Video- Olly Murs sings “Love Ain't Here Anymore” - Live Show 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 1 Nov 28, 2009. The X Factor UK 2009: Olly fears that he's out of his comfort zone with a love song, but surely he can sing “Love Ain't Here Anymore”? See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Check out The X Factor 2009 Video - Joe McElderry sings “Could it Be Magic” - Live Show 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 1 Nov 28, 2009. The X Factor 2009: Joe's had trouble with the high notes in his first song he sang for X Factor. Can Joe feel the magic? See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Watch The X Factor 2009 Video - Stacey Solomon sings “Rule the World” - Live Show 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 1 Nov 28, 2009. The X Factor UK 2009: Stacey is singing a song written for four men! With some tough low notes, can Stacey Rule The World? See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Check out The X Factor 2009 Video - Lloyd Daniels sings “I'm Still Standing” - Live Show 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 1 Nov 28, 2009. The X Factor UK 2009: In a big performance, Lloyd needs to be lifted up high. Wouldn't be a problem, if he wasn't afraid of heights. See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Enjoy The X Factor 2009 Video - Danyl Johnson sings “Your Song” - Live Show 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 1 Nov 28, 2009. The X Factor UK 2009: Danyl has been stressing over a big note in his Elton John song. Will he be able to deliver “Your Song”? See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Watch The X Factor 2009 Video - Olly Murs sings “Saturday Night's Alright” - Live Show 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Nov 28, 2009. The X Factor UK 2009: With Elton John's “butchest” (Olly’s word) song, will Olly come out fighting tonight for his place in the competition? See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Check out The X Factor 2009 Video - Joe McElderry sings “Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word” - Live Show 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Nov 28, 2009. The X Factor UK 2009: Singing his song from the judges houses - Is Joe taking the safe route, or can he prove he’s grown? See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Watch The X Factor 2009 Video - Stacey Solomon sings “The Way You Look Tonight” - Live Show 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Nov 28, 2009 The X Factor UK 2009: Stacey's stage performance requires her to lie down, restricting her breathing. Can she still sing? See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Check out The X Factor 2009 Video - The Five Finalists Perform “I Don't Feel Like Dancing!” - Live Results 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 18 Nov 29, 2009. The X Factor UK 2009: Waiting for the result, the remaining five acts sing the Scissor Sister favorite, “I Don't Feel Like Dancing!” See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Watch The X Factor 2009 Video – Rihanna sings “Russian Roulette” from her album Rated R - Live Results 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 18 Nov 29, 2009. The X Factor 2009: Alicia Keys treats us to “Russian Roulette from her Rated R album which dropped November 23, 2009. See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Check out The X Factor 2009 Video - Alicia Keys: Medley - Live Results 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 18 Nov 29, 2009. The X Factor 2009: Alicia Keys treats us to a medley of her songs “Empire State of Mind,” “Doesn't Mean Anything” and “No-one!” from her 4th album Element of Freedom due to drop December 14, 2009. See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Watch The X Factor 2009 Video - The Weekend’s Results - Live Results 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 18a Nov 29, 2009. The X Factor UK 2009: There's no more blaming the judges! The act you decided to send home is... See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Check out The X Factor 2009 Video - Lloyd Leaves but not before singing “A Million Love Songs” again - Live Results 8 (itv.com/xfactor) Season 6 Episode 18 Nov 29, 2009. The X Factor UK 2009: Lloyd Daniels performs “A Million Love Songs,” as a final farewell after being voted out of the competition. See more at http://www.itv.com/xfactor:
Also visit http://www.galechesterwhittington.com/ for free humor, short stories, poems, and book excerpts from the award-winning gay author