Why That Carrie Underwood/David Cook Duet Ended Up On the Cutting Room Floor

So, it turned out that TPTB at 19 could not get clearance after all for that Van Halen duet, “Why Can’t This Be Love”,   Carrie Underwood and David Cook filmed for Carrie Underwood’s All-Star Holiday Special that aired Monday night.

When David mentioned clearance issues in one of his radio interviews promoting the special, fans were worried, but hopeful the producers could work things out. Unfortunately, it appears the duet was doomed from the start.

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Live Daily reports that the problems began before Carrie and David set foot on the soundstage:

The show’s producers at 19 Entertainment apparently did not believe the initial rejection they received from the Van Halen camp when permission to use the song was first requested. Figuring legal and financial issues could be worked out later, they proceeded to film the duet, which now rests on the cutting room floor.

Seriously? Filming a performance without clearing the song first? WTF? And, with all the experience 19 has getting songs cleared for American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, etc, you’d think they’d know better.

And the result? We were denied our Carrie/Cookie duet during Monday’s broadcast of Carrie’s special. Boo.

As an aside, Live Daily speculates that the current incarnation of Van Halen had no interest in clearing songs from the Sammy Hagar era of the band. Meow.

About mj santilli 33693 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!

48 Comments

  1. You know, I’m not even pissed at Van Halen, because frankly it’s their song and they have the right to grant clearance to who they wish. I lay the blame squarely on 19. Carrie and David could have done one of a million songs the producers COULD get clearance for, maybe even redo the Fleetwood Mac “Go Your Own Way” duet they did for the “American Idol Experience” opening at Disney. Instead they were stubborn and thought they could, um, GET their own way.

    Sounds like they had a whole skit built around the title/theme of the VH song…maybe a sly wink to all the CookWood “shippers” out there, or more likely tied in to the unfunny “let’s get Carrie’s sister a date” running joke.

  2. That’s right, Carrie and David could have done one of a million songs the producers COULD get clearance for. I do think there may be a backlash against Van Halen. I would have loved to see them perform together!

  3. Pretty please Van Hagar, let them sing your song on the re-run. There is a re-run, right?

  4. It was indeed sad. David’s part was edited weird. Lie was beautiful but the fact that there was no interaction between David and Carrie was odd because she talked about him being a friend but they did not speek or interact at all in the special.

  5. Yeah why the hell did they HAVE to sing that song? I’ve just always assumed since Carrie chose the song but ack they could have gone with something else. I’m convinced more than ever though they’re a bunch of morons at 19.

    As mentioned in the headlines thread Van Halen once had David’s Hot For Teacher performance on their site so I’m sure Van Halen has no problem lowering themselves to him or Carrie I’m bet for that matter. I believe the whole Hagar issue thing.

  6. I do think there may be a backlash against Van Halen.

    Who knows or cares about this? A few in the bubble Cook fans or Carrie fans? And it’s Van Halen’s song to do with as they please, or any or no reason whatsover. Maybe Eddie saw an especially poignant One Day At A Time when contacted, or was having a stock-piled Clear Pepsi causing some bad memories of Van Hagar, who knows? But if they said “no,” when first asked, then the producers could have chosen any of a number of other songs. The producers arrogance/stupidity is at fault, not Van Halen’ for their waaaay in advance decision to not give the rights to the song.

  7. The moment there was any hint there could be clearance issues, a contingency plan should have been put in place. Hundreds of thousands of songs to choose and they went with the VH disaster anyway? Shameful.

    Maybe this only extends to the people inside the bubble but so what? Fans were told to expect this – only to learn TPTB dropped the ball, or in this case, let their bubble burst. Sad.

    19 should be scrambling to promote David Cook, not sit idly by while the duet gets swept away with yesterday’s refuse. So frustrating!

  8. I don’t care who’s fault it was, I’m still pissed about it.

    It was indeed sad. David’s part was edited weird.

    It sure was. They must of thought they were going to get clearance for the song up to the last minute.

  9. Raaaaaaaaaage! That is all.

    Seriously, though 19E –PEOPLE WANT COOKWOOD.

    Make it happen.

  10. I know I’ve seen that “Right Now” song from the Van Hagar era in commercials. So, I wonder if Sammy just doesn’t have a writing credit on that one, but he does on WCTBL? Or perhaps, at some point Eddie just decided that there was no way he was going to put another penny in Sammy’s pocket? Maybe the rift has grown bigger as time has gone on. Perhaps the last time Eddie fell off the wagon, he did it with Sammy’s tequila?

    I’m inclined to believe the political reason. Van Halen has no concerns about their rock cred. It’s cemented in several layers of platinum.

    I doubt the issue lies with either Cook or Carrie covering one of their songs. Van Halen is awesome, but Carrie’s sold several million records in the last few years. Most bands would let an artist that successful cover their song on TV.

    If they had picked a different Van Halen song, not from the Van Hagar era, my guess is it would have been on tv.

  11. I agree with whomever said that this particular song — Why Can’t This Be Love — was tied into 19E’s schtick for the night about Carrie’s sister needing a date. So, the duet ended up being sacraficed to that. And I also agree that, on the Van Halen side, this was all about infighting, with David and Carrie being totally beside the point.

    This is what you get when you have Lythgoe and Shankman at the reins, who probably know diddly squat about this situation. People who know nothing of the rock world, rock music. They couldn’t be any more clueless. Stick to the dancing show guys!

  12. This was a massive fail on 19E’s part. They bet on a very iffy call, and we all lost as a result. They could have easily performed another song and kept the banter in. Its crazy that the one person on the show she called a good friend was the person she had no conversation with and who only had 1 song. Wrong!

  13. This rests with 19’s arrogance. I’m going to assume over the years they’ve encountered this before and got clearance at the last minute which is why they did it here. Still thousands of other songs could have been clearned so this is just ridiculous.

    I’d love for it to get leaked though; somehow.

  14. I’m inclined to believe the political reason. Van Halen has no concerns about their rock cred. It’s cemented in several layers of platinum.

    I doubt the issue lies with either Cook or Carrie covering one of their songs. Van Halen is awesome, but Carrie’s sold several million records in the last few years. Most bands would let an artist that successful cover their song on TV.

    If they had picked a different Van Halen song, not from the Van Hagar era, my guess is it would have been on tv.

    I think you’re all probably right about the politics. The Guitar Hero Van Halen track list only includes songs from the six David Lee Roth era albums and none from the Sammy Hagar era despite achieving way more number 1 albums and singles with Hagar.

  15. I’m as bummed as everyone that we didn’t get to see Carrie and Cook perform together. From the sounds of it the duet was one of the highlights of the 2-day taping, and I know they both had a lot of fun doing the performance.

    But I’m not going to go all torches and pitchforks after Van Halen or even after 19/Fremantle. I just hope someone realizes that there’s gold in them thar’ hills, and decides that Carrie and David need to get booked on a CMT Crossroads episode pronto. That would allow Carrie to show her rocker side, Dave to show the cross-over potential of some of his songs (Lie, Avalanche, etc.), and fans both in and out of the Idol bubble to see the two friends interact and have a blast singing together.

    Make it happen for your golden children, Simon Fuller. I think you must know there’s money to be made there.

  16. I have nothing against Cook, although I do not care for him. Anyhow, I would’ve preferred a Carrie/Bo Bice duet, instead. Plus, I would’ve preferred that they perform instead of his cameo appearance on her special. Bo is such an attractive man and what a great southern rock voice. :-)

  17. Seriously, though 19E ‘“PEOPLE WANT COOKWOOD.

    Make it happen.

    Make it happen for your golden children, Simon Fuller.

    Haha, WORD to the above. Cookwood must happen at some point, and we need to see it. I don’t care how/when/what. From all reports, these two sound way too awesome together for us to be deprived any longer. Go Your Own Way was awesome, but all we ever got was a crappy youtube of it, besides which, from what Carrie/David has said, that was kind of thrown together last minute. It was a song that Carrie has done in concert multiple times, that she’d used to sing with her openers in the past, and it turned out beautifully even though they probably only rehearsed it a few times– now can you imagine what a Cookwood duet that was well-planned and well-rehearsed would sound like? And in HD, with good sound? Baah, huge opportunity lost here. For me, at least. SO.SAD.

  18. Make it happen for your golden children, Simon Fuller. I think you must know there’s money to be made there.

    Yes, and all will be forgiven. We would all love a CookWood Christmas present.

  19. Anyhow, I would’ve preferred a Carrie/Bo Bice duet, instead.

    I didn’t watch their season, but didn’t they have a top 2 duet like they seem to every season? Or did that start in the later seasons? Sorry, asking cuz I can’t Google/youtube to find out at the moment.

  20. Here’s David and Carrie singing at Disney World. And here’s Bo and Carrie singing together on Idol.

    I’d have loved to have seen both Bo AND David have a chance to duet with Carrie, frankly, rather than most of those lame attempts at comedy, but if I had to choose between Cook and Bo, sorry, I’d choose Cook. And if you look at who’s been more successful commercially, you can see why they chose Cook over Bo too.

    Cook took one for the team as far as I’m concerned. I’m more and more convinced that he was sent out on those radio “promo” gigs to do damage control. Let’s hope they all make it up to him by getting him and Carrie that CMT Crossroads gig AND having Carrie duet with him on the new album.

    If the folks at 19 are geniuses at anything, it’s shameless cross-promotion, so there are no excuses not to make it happen.

  21. Raaaaaaaaaage! That is all.

    Seriously, though 19E ‘“PEOPLE WANT COOKWOOD.

    Make it happen.

    THIS. We wants it, the preshhhhussssss. Gives it to us. One Idol duet to rule them all.

    Carrie’s covered rock before and VH gave Dave’s H4T a very public thumbs up, so I’m over the idea that rock cred was the issue. Plus, you know, JUMP on Glee. I totally 100% buy the Hagar politics thing, and 19E stupidly figuring they could throw money at Eddie to change his mind cuz for them it’s all about the benjamins.

  22. I didn’t watch their season, but didn’t they have a top 2 duet like they seem to every season?

    They did!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vRHnqYl89mQ

    It was Up Where We Belong by Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warren. Cheesy song IMO but they sounded great together and I for one would have LOVED another Barrie & Co duet. They had great chemistry.

    They also sang Bless The Broken Road on the AI tour.

    I’m holding out for Carrie to do Crossroads with a legendary act. I don’t even know who it’d be. Heart would’ve been the obvious option early on but they’ve already done Crossroads with Wynonna. I’m sure Carrie’d have fun with an 80s hair band but I’m not so into that idea. I’d actually be real interested in a Carrie-Alicia Keys Crossroads – Alicia’s obviously not a legend yet but I think they’d make a real interesting set together. I also need for Carrie and Brad to do something like Cross Country together because every single thing they’ve done together has been awesome and it’d be great to get a live performance of Oh Love.

    Where did anybody hear that Carrie chose Why Can’t This Be Love by the way? She only mentioned the duet in that 1 conference call interview she did, and I think the WPLJ interview where she said David was her excuse to rock out on the special. But she didn’t say anything about being the person who picked the song at the time. Being honest I don’t think it’s that great a song so I don’t feel like I missed out (I thought Go Your Own Way was a great choice though). But the point made by Sassycatz about it tying into the getting her sister a date thing makes some sense.

    As far as the clearance issue this wouldn’t be the 1st time that production figured they would work out clearance issues later and went ahead with filming anyway. In retrospect it was a bad decision especially if they knew why permission was being denied. But I think blame goes to Carrie and everybody involved for not anticipating the issue clearing Hagar songs.

  23. “American Idol” contestants rarely display any business savvy, especially as it relates to the music industry. David Cook, the “AI” champ from season seven, was assigned radio promo duties for Carrie Underwood’s Fox holiday special and decided to talk about what will not be aired and why: A Cook-Underwood duet on Van Halen’s “Why Can’t This Be Love.”

    Oh, and I’m not holding my breath for “NULL” over on LiveDaily’s site to correct the record either. I’m sure he’s far to “business savvy” to admit he didn’t do his homework before he posted that story.

  24. What I don’t understand is why Carrie did not choose another song and why Van Halen, I like their music but they are known to be full of drama and act more like moody old hags. There are so many songs she could’ve picked from. Mind you, I LOVE Carrie. Why did 19 procrastinate? Whatever.

  25. I’d actually be real interested in a Carrie-Alicia Keys Crossroads ‘“ Alicia’s obviously not a legend yet but I think they’d make a real interesting set together.

    I adore Cook. And I would probably be more excited to see this. (I liked the Leann Rimes/Joss Stone CR a lot, and I probably like CU and AK more than either of those performers.)

    But it would be nice for a duet someday. And I don’t really care for WCTBL, so I’m hoping the next one (assuming there will be one) will be both easier to clear AND a better song.

  26. Being honest I don’t think it’s that great a song so I don’t feel like I missed out (I thought Go Your Own Way was a great choice though)..

    But I read all those reviews from both Carrie and DC fans who were at the taping… and from all accounts it was kickass… so I do feel we missed out. And Carrie did tell Brian Mansfield that they sound really good together, while DC’s mentioned “finding the pocket” when dueting with Carrie– I’ve found these two to be pretty humble when talking about themselves, so for them to toot their own horns even a little bit like that makes me think it must’ve been really great.

    But the point made by Sassycatz about it tying into the getting her sister a date thing makes some sense

    That makes sense to me as well. The whole cut duet made for really awkward editing on that part.

    I’d actually be real interested in a Carrie-Alicia Keys Crossroads ‘“ Alicia’s obviously not a legend yet but I think they’d make a real interesting set together.

    That sounds fun. Honestly, I love Carrie’s singing even though I don’t love Country, so any Carrie Crossroads with another genre could be great. Hair band, R&B, heck Kelly Clarkson would be awesome (Kelly has answered interview questions in the past that she would love to sing with Carrie, cuz Carrie can “blow”). But I honestly doubt Carrie would do a Crossroads with any other Idol, much less DC, who isn’t a big name yet. I’d love for a duet to happen soon, and still think there are other opportunities for it to happen, but I don’t think it’ll be on Crossroads. Just keepin it real.

  27. Oh, I adore Bo. His stunning ‘In a Dream’ was far and away my favorite Idol moment until David Cook stepped to the edge and sang ‘The World I Know’ to cap his winning run. But yes, I would have loved to see Bo sing on Carrie’s special as well. His little cameo made me smile, but he really is great on stage. I’m not sure what plans are for his next album, but I really hope Idol continues to show him love and brings him back for a performance slot. He was fantastic during his guest spot in season 7 (and I liked his advice and interaction with the contestants too). Bo rules.

  28. The Van Halen song is not one that I like, but then again, neither was H4T and Cook hit that one out of the park. I also didn’t like that Fleetwood Mac song until Carrie and David sang it. With perhaps the exceptions of Hunger Strike, Creep and MITB, I usually find Cook’s song choices very WTF until he performs them. Conversely, one of my favorite songs that he covers, “My Hero” is not even in my top 10 of favorite Cook covers.

  29. His little cameo made me smile,

    Yeah, that was a second little beef. Bo was there and he didn’t get to sing? Aww. I was sad.

    And Kristin Chenowerth, would have liked something real in addition to the comic song with the pink dresses and the skits. I tuned in and out, but I don’t think she got a real number?

    Guest stars who are killer singers should SANG, people.

    Hmm, back to the question of the hour: when could Cookwood happen, for reals? I can’t believe I’m scanning the horizon for any pop musical opportunity–no matter how cheesy–that would bring my two faves together again.

  30. Hmm, back to the question of the hour: when could Cookwood happen, for reals?

    No idea. I speculated IGB earlier, as a venue where these two could conceivable play an inspirational cover, but after hearing Carrie’s Change, there’s NO WAY she’s not singing that song there, and by herself. I think someone mentioned upthread that if DC showed up at a Carrie concert, she could conceivably pull him up on stage to do this song as a fun thing for fans… but that seems a bit hard as well (Carrie’s band would have to practice the song, DC would need his guitar, etc.), besides which, in that case, we would yet again only see grainy youtubes.

    At this point, I’m not holding out too much hope we’ll see opportunity for Cookwood on mainstream pop musical TV opportunities, unless Fuller & Co at 19 cook up (heh, pun intended) some new Idol-ish type TV gig.

  31. I speculated IGB earlier, as a venue where these two could conceivable play an inspirational cover, but after hearing Carrie’s Change, there’s NO WAY she’s not singing that song there, and by herself.

    And Cook said he and the boys are working on something of their own for IGB. That doesn’t mean, though, that they can’t also duet. Wasn’t there some mix and matchy Idol stuff on the last IGB? TBH, I don’t remember much outside of STTL.

    Okay, this prolly would never happen, but wouldn’t it be kinda cool if the producers dropped the random WTF musical guests like Flo Rida and did a series of all star Idol duets on the result shows..Cookie/Carrie (cuz they wub each other), Jordin/Archie (they also wub each other), Adam/Tasia (hell with clearance issues, they could just ad lib runs and yeah yeah yeahs for five minutes and it would be awesome), Ruben/Kelly (didn’t she throw his name out in an interview?) Kris/Chris doing something acoustic-y (I think they wrote together.) Put the duets up on iTunes and watch Idol stans buy en masse to support their faves. Call me, Fuller. I’m brilliant, for reals.

  32. Okay, this prolly would never happen, but wouldn’t it be kinda cool if the producers dropped the random WTF musical guests like Flo Rida and did a series of all star Idol duets on the result shows..Cookie/Carrie (cuz they wub each other), Jordin/Archie (they also wub each other), Adam/Tasia (hell with clearance issues, they could just ad lib runs and yeah yeah yeahs for five minutes and it would be awesome), Ruben/Kelly (didn’t she throw his name out in an interview?) Kris/Chris doing something acoustic-y (I think they wrote together.) Put the duets up on iTunes and watch Idol stans buy en masse to support their faves. Call me, Fuller. I’m brilliant, for reals.

    Add Melinda/Elliot to that list and I think we have ourselves a season!

  33. ^^ Love it. Let’s just do it and bypass the crappy audition rounds for S9.

  34. Haha, it will never happen, but please add Allison to that ideal mix! Allison needs to sing with… darn, Kelly, DC, and Daughtry are taken, you tell me? Um…

  35. Allison needs to sing with’ ¦ darn, Kelly, DC, and Daughtry are taken, you tell me? Um’ ¦

    I’ll be generous and let DC sing twice. :)

  36. Allison and Clay? Bwahhh ha ha. Allison and Carly Smithson! On Alone. Y/y? Or Ally and Bo?

  37. sma11ie
    12/11/2009 at 2:42 pm

    Haha, it will never happen, but please add Allison to that ideal mix! Allison needs to sing with’ ¦ darn, Kelly, DC, and Daughtry are taken, you tell me? Um’ ¦

    I vote for Allison and Bo, since Kelly, DC and Daughtry are taken.

    Sorry just jumpin’ in, for a sec.

  38. I want this imaginary season of Idol All Star Duets SO bad.

    Now I feel like kidnapping Ryan’s dog–and Simon Cowell’s–and maybe David Beckham, Simon Fuller’s favorite pet–and holding them somewhere in hiding till we Get Our Damn Duets.*

    *joking. 19E please do not send ninjas to my house to disappear me for threatening Becks.

  39. It sucks. Sounds like 19 fell down on the job. Whatever, why did they deprive us of a cookwood duet? Unfair, stupid, ridiculous, inexcusable. Shouldn’t have happened.

  40. You know what I think? The pulled it because a deal was in the works already with American Idol. I think Carrie and David will be doing a duet on this season American Idol. They had to give some excuse and what excuse is used with American Idol time and time again? Yep, song clearance issues.

    I’m thinking they will do a special perhaps too instead of normal season shows, perhaps and American Idol tribute show, a big 2 hour special with all past winners. They have enough winners and cast now to put on a big special like that. One or the other is where my bet is.

  41. Free the CookWood! My dream is for them to show the tapes of both Cookwood duets to the folks at CrossRoads and finagle an episode, but really, whatever and whenever they could make it happen to get me a high quality CookWood duet, I’d be totally up for it.

    Loving the idea of All-Idol-Star duet show. I’d totally watch that. Love the suggested duet partners so far, too. C’mon, 19, you owe us. Also, put a DC song in for one of the top 6 performances next week on SYTYCD. I don’t know, how about Lie? That might help to get me to forgive you. [Maybe. Somewhat. A bit. It would be a start.]

  42. Free the CookWood!

    *tear, I’m laughing so hard there are tears* Oh MY. Chica bow chica bow bow.

  43. Lera, I think a show of duets devoted to past winners would be terrific. They could probably each do two duets…one with another idol and one with a guest of their choice. A winner + runner up concert would be great too, but the aftermath of that kind of concert with all the fanwars, poll-spamming and biased reveiws would be enough to keep me away from the internet for months!
    #FreetheCookWood! Now that would be something worth trending.

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