Sam Bailey: Monica and Anton should have been in bottom three

The X Factor opened in style last weekend and the This Is Me theme was fantastic. We got a real insight into how each of the acts wants to be seen and there were some really good performances.

Bupsi was the first to go and I have to say I wasn’t surprised as I tipped her to bow out first in last week’s blog. To be fair her vocal was better than it was at Judges’ Houses but she still didn’t stand out so I think it was the right choice for her to go.

We all knew she would be in the bottom three but I was surprised and gutted that Alien Uncovered were there too.

That was completely the wrong the decision. Simon got a bit of stick for referring to them as “Alien Nation” but it’s not the first time he has got something wrong and I think he definitely knows who they are.

He will probably be quite pleased that they have gone though. He really liked their performance on Saturday and would have seen them as a threat. Also, when you look at groups like One Direction and JLS you don’t have to win the show to have success.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Simon worked with them in the future. They are too good to be chucked aside and be doing tiny gigs. Whether it’s with Simon or not we haven’t heard the last of these girls.

Having said that, if you’re judging it purely on the sing-off then it might have been the right decision. Kiera really surprised me with her performance and she did really well in the sing-off.

Alien Uncovered axe shows you must play to your strengths

Alien Uncovered just stood there and sang in the sing-off and if they had danced around it would have grabbed people’s attention a bit more and I think they would have stayed.

Standing still and singing isn’t what they are all about and it cost them. The year I was on the show Kingsland Road did a similar thing and while they felt it was a great performance as it was full of emotion, that’s not what people wanted or expected from them.

The remaining acts should take this as a warning so that if and when they are in the bottom two they don’t just stand there and sing unless that’s their thing. If you can add a dance routine people won’t focus on the vocals so much.

We’ve already seen it with Reggie ‘N’ Bollie. They jump around so much you tend to focus on the performance rather than the singing.

I liked their performance – I don’t think they are good singers but it was an uplifting song and good fun to watch.

There are only a couple of acts who genuinely stand out vocally so if you find yourself in the bottom two just stick to what you’re good at.

Anton and Monica should have joined Bupsi in the bottom three

To be honest I didn’t really like Anton’s performance this week. It didn’t really do anything for me. He is growing on people as he’s got character but I didn’t think his performance was that strong.

Maybe it’s just me but I’m stuck in my ways and have listened to Luther Vandross sing Dance With My Father so many times that I can’t really enjoy someone else singing it. It’s always used at funerals and I sang it for my Dad when he passed away and that’s perhaps why I didn’t like it.

He’s got a lovely tone to his voice but in the lower register the way he opens his mouth and elaborates his vowels gets to me a little bit.

He does seem like such a nice a guy though and I can see why the viewers are warming to him. If I met him I’d just want to give him a big hug.

Monica Michael was another one who wasn’t great for me. I just don’t really get her so for me I think her and Anton – along with Bupsi obviously – should have been in the bottom three.

It’s a two-horse race between Louisa and Che this year

I messaged Che after his performance and I just said “insane” because his vocal was simply incredible.

It’s between him and Louisa for me this year. If they aren’t in the final two then something has gone wrong. She will be this country’s Celine Dion whatever happens though. She is just amazing.

Song writing week would help X Factor beat Strictly in ratings war

The media seems to be fascinated about a supposed ratings war between X Factor and Strictly Come Dancing but I think they are completely different audiences. X Factor brings in a young audience and that means they are likely to be out on a Saturday night. The sort of person who watches Strictly is more likely to be tucked up in bed with a cup to tea.

We won this so-called ratings war on a few occasions when I was on the show but even if the X Factor is “losing”, a lot of people are still watching and the competition has brought about some changes and kept things fresh.

I think a song writing week would be great for the contestants and for ratings. If you teamed the acts up with a celebrity mentor to help them write their own song it would be really interesting. Imagine the buzz if someone from X Factor wrote their own song and it got to number one half way through the show.

It’s a skill the acts will need if they are going to succeed too. Some of the songs I first wrote were terrible but I’ve stuck at it and I’m now writing my own material with Ben Adams from A1.

Some of them might already be great at song writing and could prove to be the the hidden gems of the show.

If you want to make it in the music industry you have to write your own songs. That way you can connect with your audience on a personal level. It’s also where the money is made in this industry!

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Sam Bailey

2013 X Factor winner Sam Bailey captured the nation’s hearts with her incredible voice before going on to achieve chart-topping success with her single ‘Skyscraper’ and album ‘The Power of Love’. Read her exclusive thoughts on the show at Ladbrokes News.