Idol Headlines for 5/19/08

‘Idol’ show still strong despite ratings slip

A boost in airtime this season and the addition of iTunes as a fourth core sponsor (with Coca-Cola, AT&T, and Ford) have helped to make the business “stronger than it has ever been, ” says Robert F.X. Sillerman, chief executive of CKX, the firm that co-owns the franchise with FremantleMedia.

His company is the best proxy for the health of what might be called Idol Inc.: CKX subsidiary 19 Entertainment – run by “Idol “creator Simon Fuller – collects license fees from Fox, signs recording deals with the winner and any other top-50 contestant it wants, manages their careers, handles the annual summer concert tour and licenses the brand.

CKX reported last week that its “Idol”-related operating income in the first quarter rose 63 percent, vs. the same period last year, to $24 million on revenue of $28.8 million, up 42 percent.

The main reason for the increase: Fox ordered 53 hours of “Idol”, up four hours from 2007. Although that’s “a great business decision for Fox, ” Sillerman says, it may have diluted ratings for each show.

Sillerman says he’s “sure” that his company will sign record deals with semi-finalists David Archuleta and David Cook – and may pick up others.

“There’s a thought that there may be a (Chris) Daughtry lurking in the weeds in this year’s crop, someone who was voted off a little bit early who might have some value.”

JCOnline

On ‘Idol, ‘ good singers make for a dull season

LOS ANGELES (AP) ‘  This season of “American Idol” had talented singers, a doe-eyed teenage contestant for the prepubescent crowd, visits from pop royalty, stinging comments from Simon Cowell and jaw-droppers from Paula Abdul.

So why have some fans and observers found it a dull slog as the show builds to its David Archuleta vs. David Cook finale next Wednesday?

Because contestants who were good but not memorable made for mediocre television, watchers say. Where was the drama, the unpredictability, the oddball personalities? In short, where was the fun?

Such criticism is ironic given the heat “Idol” took last year when Sanjaya Malakar, more a hairstyle than a singer, held the spotlight. Or the reaction when dancin’ man Taylor Hicks won the title in 2006, trading as much on charm as skill.

Producers of the Fox show made an effort this year to go for vocal gold over glitz, and this is the thanks they get ‘  along with remaining the No. 1 show, albeit with slimmer ratings.

Associated Press

Was Jeff Archuleta Banned from Idol for Trying to Make a Side Deal?

We told you last week that Jeff Archuleta had been banned from backstage at Idol for various reasons, including TMZ’s story that he cost the show lots of money when he changed some lyrics to son David Archuleta’s song. The National Ledger now reports that the last straw that got Stage Dad from Hell banned was the fact that he tried to make a side deal with one of Idol’s sponsors while they were on a video shoot. Apparently, Jeff may have tried to get an endorsement deal for David and harassed the sponsors.

Vote For The Worst

‘American Idol’: “Idol” psychics pick a David

And the next ” American Idol” is David. But David who? Not everyone agrees on which David will win Wednesday night.

The winner: David Archuleta. There’s no question David Cook is a far more original and versatile performer than his young opponent, but as Randy has told “Archie” so often, “Dude, you can sing the phone book.” Add to that Archie’s devoted legion of prepubescent and postmenopausal fans. And then there’s this year’s coronation song, which is bound to be more syrupy than a bottle of Mrs. Butterworth’s. No one serves up syrup sweeter than Archuleta. We can already imagine his dad saying, “Pour it on.” – Daniel Bubbeo

Newsday.com

Underwood most popular ‘Idol, ‘ Castro overrated

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Country singer Carrie Underwood is the all-time most popular “American Idol” winner, and dreadlocked Jason Castro was voted the most overrated contestant this season, according to a poll released on Monday by AOL Television.

With the most watched U.S. television show reaching its climax this week, finalists David Archuleta, 17, and David Cook, 25, are running neck and neck in terms of best performances of the seventh season, according to the poll.

Reuters

Rocking (chair) ‘American Idol’

It’s David vs. David in finale of highest-rated TV series that is aging and entering its declining years

This time every spring, readers of newsprint across the land can expect to see those confident, can’t-miss lists of “Ways to Improve ‘ American Idol.'” “No Paula!” “New judges!” “Less predictability!” “Change the voting!” “Get rid of the early rounds!” “Better contestants!”

And so on. They’re terribly easy to write, require no thought, can be banged out between cups of coffee, and the consequences are almost nonexistent. Chances are, the producers aren’t even reading them anyway, so what’s the point?

There is none. Hence, no lists today.

newsday.com

David vs. David

Even if David “wonder teen” Archuleta vs. David “the Rocker” Cook is the most predictable “American Idol” finale matchup in the show’s seven-season history, that doesn’t mean the outcome is a slam dunk.

While we’re pretty sure the next “Idol’ will be named David (yeah, we’re smart like that), viewers still have to choose if they want their winner to be the squeaky-clean, angelic Archuleta or the mysterious and scruffy Cook.

Twin Cities.com

High and low notes of a lackluster ‘Idol’ season

We’ve been there the whole way this season with “American Idol”: from the goofy guy in the preliminary rounds who endured a hair waxing to the sad departure of big-voiced Carly Smithson. Fresno Beehive bloggers Felicia Cousart Matlosz and Donald Munro chronicled a relentlessly hyped but ultimately lackluster season. As we head into a David Cook vs. David Archuleta showdown, here are five high (and low) points from the blogs:

Fresno Bee

Whichever David wins, ‘Idol’ needs an overhaul next year

We were told this would be the strongest group of contestants we’ve ever seen on “American Idol.” It wasn’t.

We were promised that after last year’s disappointing installment, the show would come back strong. It didn’t.

And now, with this week’s “Idol” season finale, we’re supposed to be excited about the prospect of David Archuleta squaring off against David Cook. Sorry, but we’re not.

This was seen as a make-or-break year for “American Idol, ” and right now the “Idol” model seems broken.

Detroit News

And then there were two ‘  the two we all had expected

Is anybody surprised that it’s David Archuleta vs. David Cook in this week’s “American Idol” finale?

Really, unless you’re in the fog of extreme fan denial over dreadlocked Jason Castro’s recent dismissal or you still think Kristy Lee Cook got robbed, you must have known for weeks that it would come down to these two.

That, in a nutshell, is one of the key reasons that viewers have been drifting away from what’s still, by far, the top-rated show on television.

The Nielsen numbers tell the tale of a show that looks like it’s past its prime.

JSOnline.com

‘American Idol’: Song showdown

David Archuleta vs. Jennifer Hudson? Fantasia vs. Ruben? You decide which American Idol sang the song best.

Entertainment Weekly

Chesney gets top country award but criticizes vote

Kenny Chesney won entertainer of the year for the fourth straight time at the 43rd Annual Academy of Country Music Awards on Sunday — but said backstage that organizers had devalued the top prize by making it a “sweepstakes” up for vote on the Internet.

Carrie Underwood was named top female vocalist for the second year in a row and 18-year-old Taylor Swift, country music’s hottest young star, snagged her first award and stole the show at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas with a wardrobe-changing, water-drenched performance.

Reuters.com

Chesney after ACM win: Fan votes shouldn’t decide

For the first time in the show’s 43 years, the top prize ‘  traditionally decided by ACM members ‘  was determined through online voting. With the win, Chesney ties Garth Brooks and trails only Alabama, which won five in a row.

Chesney said immediately backstage that he thought fans should be included, just not by voting for the show’s most important award.

“The entertainer of the year trophy is supposed to represent heart and passion and an amazing amount of sacrifice, commitment and focus, ” he said. “That’s the way Garth won it four times, that’s the way I won it, that’s the way (George) Strait won it, Reba (McEntire), Alabama all those years. That’s what it’s supposed to represent.”

Carrie Underwood also took home her second consecutive female vocalist trophy.

“I know I don’t deserve it, but I’ll take it, ” Underwood said. “Fans got me everything I have, and I owe everything to you.”

Associated Press

‘IDOL’ SANJAYA SEEKS IDLE APT.

Wanted: Two one-bedroom apartments and a pair of tickets to stardom.

Former “American Idol” contestant Sanjaya Malakar, 18, and sister, Shyamali Malakar, 21, are pounding the pavement in Manhattan, looking for new digs and fresh starts to their music careers after last year’s ride to fame for the young man.

New York Post

Debut Jennifer Hudson Album Due In September

Academy Award-winning actress/former “American Idol” contestant will release her debut album, a self-titled affair, in September via Arista Records. The first single, “Spotlight, ” will impact U.S. radio outlets on June 9 and be available for sale via digital outlets the following day.

“Spotlight” was written by Ne-Yo, who co-produced along with Stargate. Additional contributors on the album include Timbaland, Robin Thicke, the Underdogs, Diane Warren and Christopher “Tricky” Stewart, among others.

“I think people will be pleasantly surprised, because it shows a side of my work that no one has heard before, ” Hudson says of the new album.

Billboard

Bucky Covington, Phil Stacey Treasure “Idol”

“American Idol” is ostensibly a pop music show, although it succeeded in launching careers for a number of country acts. Among the acts whove made country hits after coming to prominence on “Idol” are Carrie Underwood, Kellie Pickler, Josh Gracin, Bucky Covington and even Kelly Clarkson, who joined Reba McEntire on “Because Of You.”

Former “Idol” Phil Stacey released his first album last month, and he says his experience on the TV show gave him an instant fan base.

GACtv.com

Taylor Swift, Kellie Pickler and Sarah Buxton Impress Crowd at ACM New Artists Show

Kellie Pickler’s bubbling personality has made her a favorite of fans on the road as an opening act for Brad Paisley and others, and she was one of the favorites at the ACM party, too. In addition to her hit, “Red High Heels, ” she introduced a new song, apparently titled “Rocks Instead of Rice, ” about a wedding that is sure to eventually lead to divorce.

CMT.com

About mj santilli 33488 Articles
Founder and editor of mjsbigblog.com, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!