PureAGT Season 8: The Argument for Tone the Chiefrocca

I’ve made no secret of it that Tone is my favorite act of the season – I think “B-O-O-T-Y” is ridiculously catchy, I am endlessly entertained by Tone & Coley-Cole’s antics onstage, and overall, I think their concept is genius: they only aspire to be a one-hit wonder…nothing more.

I’ve certainly seen my fair share of ridicule for being such a fan – there’s definitely some out that that think their act is “dumb”, “not entertaining/worthy of a Vegas show”, “repetitive”, and just “ridiculous”. I understand that Tone isn’t everyone’s cup of tea – some of you would much rather prefer another opera act, or another country singer, or something a little more high-brow.  But before everyone gets uber-upset about him being brought back as a wild card act…why not let me try to make a case for why I think it’s good he got brought back? I promise not to take too much of your time, and at the end of it, you may feel a little bit better about seeing him again.  So without further ado, my top 3 reasons why I think Tone coming back is a good thing:

1.) He’s a cannon-fodder act.

Tone’s not gonna make it through the semifinals – of that I’m sure.  He doesn’t stand a chance against the likes of Collins, Forte, the Kristef Brothers, or Taylor.  But the reality of AGT is that every week, 8 acts must go home in order for 4 to advance…and sometimes, it helps to build in a few acts that you know won’t stand a chance, and that you won’t feel bad about sending home in order to protect your favorites.  Tone is the perfect cannon-fodder act: he’s already been sent home once, he doesn’t take himself very seriously, he’s not going to be crushed if he gets eliminated a second time, and he’s just thankful for the chance to perform “B-O-O-T-Y” one more time.  Sure, you can argue that “so-and-so deserved a second chance more than Tone!”, but let’s think realistically here: most, if  not all, of the acts brought back as wild cards are probably not going to make it through to the top 10.  I don’t see them displacing heavy-hitters like Forte, Collins, Catapult, Jimmy, etc.  The wild card pick is basically just a stay of execution for them – just a chance to perform one more time, with the chances of them actually making it through being really, really slim.  Sure, Mel could have picked someone like Chloe Channell, and we could have listened to her warble her way through another lackluster country song, only to get eliminated AGAIN and start crying; but how entertaining would that have been? Which brings me to my next point…

2.) He’s an entertaining space-filler.

Undoubtedly, there’s going to be talented acts that just kind of fizzle in the semifinals – hell, some of them even fizzled in the quarterfinals *cough*Marty*cough*.  And when too many acts in a row fizzle – you end up with situations like we had in quarterfinal #4, when many of us were so bored during the first hour that we contemplated changing the channel.  Yes, this is a show about talent – but it’s also still a tv show, and ratings are still important.  You don’t want your audience changing the channel mid-show because they’re not entertained.  Enter Tone – even if you don’t think he’s worthy of a Vegas show, you have to admit: the dude is an entertainer, and his quarterfinal performance brought the house down.  He has a bit of the “trainwreck appeal” that makes people want to watch, even if they don’t particularly like the songs he’s singing. He could be the perfect type of act to wake up a lackluster show, without detracting too much from the truly talented acts.  So maybe instead of thinking of Tone as “taking the place of a more talented act” – think of him as a special musical guest, put somewhere in the middle of the show to liven things up 😉

3.) AGT could benefit from the success of “B-O-O-T-Y’.

Someone on Twitter asked me the other day why “B-O-O-T-Y” wasn’t on the radio already.  And it brought up an interesting thought to me – does AGT perhaps have a vested interest in the commercial success of “B-O-O-T-Y”? Let me explain.  Shows like American Idol, The Voice, and The X-Factor are notorious for keeping their talent under contractual lock and key for a prolonged period of time after the show – even the singers who only made it through the early rounds have ironclad contracts imposed upon them that can prohibit them from “doing anything to advance their career” for up to a YEAR after the show airs, or that may reward “first dibs” on any record deals to studios associated with those shows, or may even go so far as to spell out terms whereby the show itself could potentially collect royalties from any performances the contestants do within a specified period of time.  It’s predatory contracts like these that have made me grow to hate Simon Cowell as a human being – they’re basically provisions that allow him to squeeze every last dime of profit out of a contestant before kicking them to the curb.  And since Simon’s one of the creators of AGT – what’s to say there aren’t contractual obligations similar to these that are imposed upon AGT contestants? The powers that be may very well see Tone as a potential cash cow – there may already be a record deal in the works to get “B-O-O-T-Y” on the radio, in which case, it’s going to benefit the show to get Tone as much exposure as possible…up to and including bringing him back as a wildcard act.

So there’s my arguments in support of Tone’s return…take ’em or leave ’em.  Just wanted to get it off my chest 🙂

UPDATE: Forgot to add this hilarious radio interview that Tone & Cole did a few weeks ago – they of course had me laughing, but it was interesting to hear the back story of “B-O-O-T-Y” and hear them admit that they weren’t expecting to actually make it as far as they had on AGT.  Tone also has “mad love” for Angela Hoover 🙂 :