Today on Blogcritics
Home » A Disconnect Between American Idol and Voters

A Disconnect Between American Idol and Voters

Please Share...Print this pageTweet about this on Twitter0Share on Facebook0Share on Google+0Pin on Pinterest0Share on TumblrShare on StumbleUpon0Share on Reddit0Email this to someone

I haven't watched this season of American Idol, but it doesn't stop me from thinking about it a little bit. With all the Sanjaya stuff going on right now in this current season of the show, everyone is talking about American Idol and it occurs to me that there is a total disconnect between the stated point of the show and the voting. I feel like if Americans are the jury in the American Idol court they need a strong foreman to remind them of what their purpose is for watching.

American Idol is meant to pick out a star. It is meant to pick out someone who can sing, put on flashy performances, and look good doing it. That's right folks. All three. That way, the winner will have a career when the show is over. That means that America needs to pick someone who they would be willing to see in concert. They need to pick someone whose CD they would go purchase at the store. Anything short of doing that is pure and simple cruelty.

Last season Americans pushed Taylor Hicks all the way to the championship. Now he can't even sell a million copies of his album. What a cruel, cruel joke you all played on him. He thought you were all telling him to make an album that you all would presumably buy. Tens of millions of people voted and told him, "You are the winner! Now go make that album!" as if they were pre-ordering the album to give him a shot at making a stellar music career.

Cue the chirping crickets.

Now, it seems that all you people ever really wanted to do was laugh at the young guy with the gray hair and the "Soul Patrol" as he danced cheesily into votes that never meant what he thought they meant. So, all those of you who have at least half a heart, go do the right thing and pick up that man's awful debut album. You told him millions of times last year that you would and his current sales of around 650,000 mean that a lot of you are mean.

By the way, while you are at the store, see if you can dig up a copy of Ruben Studdard's album because I think you forgot to pick that one up too.

And don't forget this lesson, because I don't know who is even on American Idol this season other than Sanjaya, but I do know that even with all you people voting for him, he would sell about as many albums as William Hung. Don't do this to another contestant.

Powered by

About Craig Lyndall

  • Dynamo of Eternia

    I really don’t watch American Idol, just because I find the overall concept of it annoying.

    None the less, it’s hard to completely avoid hearing information about it after the fact.

    And the pattern that seems to occur is that the runners up who get towards the end of the competition but lose at the last second on American Idol most often go on to have better, more successful careers than the person who does win. I’m not sure why that is, but it has pretty much been the norm for the most part.

    So, my advice to anyone who goes on that show… try to get to the very end and then lose. Your career will almost instantly be guaranteed to be better than the person who does win.

  • RunaroundSue

    Do you not know that Taylor Hicks is on a 57 city sold out every night solo tour of the US. Go see Taylor Hicks in person please; enjoy an amazing performer who does a mix of tunes from his new CD, original songs and cover from Supertramps “Long Way Home” to Ray Charles “Compared to What.”

    No other American Idol has every had a more sucessful post Idol solo tour.

    Don’t write off Mr. Hicks so fast and don’t buy the Taylor is not doing well, Taylor is doing just fine and coming to a city near you

  • Dale Schultz

    I just saw Taylor Hicks in Chicago last night. He was wonderful. The House of Blues was packed with men and women and it was a fantastic concert. He sang songs from his CD, most people loved, knew and sang along to. He sang songs he wrote-exceptionally good, and some we’d never heard before. Taylor is in for the long run, his fans will not let him fizzle out, believe me. If you don’t care for his type of music, that’s your business, but, as your directions for this say, Personal attacks are NOT allowed.
    There is room for all kinds of music.

    Dale Schultz (The Golden Rule Lady)

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    I think that there are a few factors that account for this.

    First of all, most people who watch American Idol are like me – casual viewers who have fun watching the show and really get into it. We vote, blog, and argue over who they think is going to win. But after the winner is crowned and summer begins, we forget about the show and whoever was on it, until the new season starts.

    Second, because it can take up to a year to release an album, people simply forget about the winner. Although Justin Guarini didn’t win, his album was released very late, which definitely hurt his sales since people at that point were thinking “Justin who?” I think Taylor’s album may have suffered a little because of the same thing.

    Third, the albums put out by the AI winners (and runner ups) simply suck. They’re often sterilized, cheesy, commercialized crap that the singer would never normally dream of singing if he or she had their way. When I heard Bo Bice’s album, I was surprised and disappointed. It didn’t sound like anything he would create. I was all set to buy it, but didn’t.

    Fourth, while the winners do have their loyal, die-hard fans who stick with them after the show, it’s tough to gain new fans who do not watch AI.
    For example, a lot of people hate American Idol and don’t take it seriously. Its contestants, to some, are no better than any other reality show contestant. And I know many stories of rabid fans who buy 10, 20 copies of their favorite’s CD in the attempt to “help” him or her, but in the end, for the winner (or any AI alum) to survive in the cutthroat world of the music industry, he/she needs to gain fans outside of the show.

  • Steven

    You’ve just said it all man. This is exactly how it is. Taylor was a novelty, and dime-store toy who was endearing in a “crazy uncle dances at the wedding” kind of way. He was the hapless underdog who was the anti-idol, the one needing the win the most to scrape together a music career, unlike the other finalists (*cough* Daughtry *cough*). I’m glad he’s having a successful tour with his Soul Patrol audience because that is certainly all that will be left of his career, eventually dwindling down to Vegas or even Atlantic City. Can’t help but feel bad for the dude. It would have been better had he not won, what with all the expectations. Daughtry should have taken the title, but then he was damned lucky he didn’t, so kudos to Hicks for saving the man. But then again, this is Idol, and Hicks lowered the standard that gives even Sanjaya some hope.

  • brandon

    Great point! America played a very cruel joke on Taylor Hicks. They voted him the American Idol winner but his CD sales is more like American Idol LOSER with the worst CD sales of any of the winners. And to top that off, the 4th place finisher, Chris Daughtry is kicking his ass in CD sales > 3:1.

    America needs to stop with this cruelty and NOT vote Sanjaya as the next American Idol or he will be the laughing stalk as Taylor is now.

  • Dragondays

    “No other American Idol has ever had a more sucessful post Idol solo tour.”

    Nonsense! Clay Aiken did 95 concerts in 2004, the vast majority of them in much much larger venues. Oh wait, you mean just among the “winners” 😉

  • http://www.essentialjustin.com Spring

    Kaonashi, thank you for your comment about Justin Guarini. IMO, he got the rawest deal of all the finalists. Unlike later years, he was held to the contest’s rules and forced to wait several months until after the winner released her CD. Compound that with having to release it the same day as Ruben’s and Clay’s singles. No single to radio (“Sorry” was released two weeks after Justin’s CD dropped), no video; it was a textbook recipe for disaster.

    Allowing both Chris and Kellie to release Cd’s before the winner has cheapened the AI crown and by this point, it’s been rendered pretty meaningless.

  • Lore

    Interesting article, last season really did change the importance of being the “winner” with so many contestants signed and cds released.
    My fav Elliott Yamin away from AI and 19E is doing great, with his cd, smart man to release his cd on a independant label. Winning AI does not always prove beneficial for good music

  • Jim

    I was pleasantly suprised when my friend dragged me to the Taylor Hicks concert in Tampa a few weeks ago. I found myself enjoying him a lot and even went out last week and bought the CD. I think we tend to forget there is room in this world for all types of music for all types of people. I for one look forward to a CD released by Mr. Hicks without any input from AI

  • anne

    Daughtry’s cd is doing great., personally I don’t think that Daughtry has garnered that manys new fans. These # are inflated and there is alot of palm greasing to the radio stations. When the AI machine is finished with Daughtry and has moved on we’ll see how well Nickleback impersonations sell.

  • brandon

    If Taylor had released his CD before Chris and Kellie would it had sold more? Hell No!

    Anybody believe that than they are crazy. It ain’t selling cuz people ain’t buying it, period. It doesn’t matter when it was released.

    Taylor is fantastic in concert however. Thus I predict he will be the headlining act at a Las Vegas Hotel soon. I will definitely go and see him in Vegas!!!

  • brandon

    So it is the same thousand fans buying 2 million Chris Daughtry CDs. Someone is very deluded.

    I would think with how poorly Taylor’s CD is doing that the PTB according to Anne would use that money she says is being used to “palm the creases at radio stations” for Chris would be used to buy more of the Taylor CDs to try to prop up the American Idol because he definitely needs some propping up.

    That platinum certification was definitely premature. At this rate, Taylor will be lucky to reach 800K.

  • sal m

    actually the fault of this process lies in the fact that the judged picked a shitty final 24 and as a result put the whole system in a tail spin.

    there is no way that either sanjaya or the italian bird from nj were better than a lot of others from the process. the same goes for “frightening phil” and the boring, beauty pagent-looking white girl with the nice legs…i watch the show and can’t remember her name!

    so the judges reap what they sow…the best is when they criticize someone for being boring or for not having a good enough voice, when they are the three people responsible for putting them in the contest!

  • Kat

    Why does every comment here that posits that Taylor Hicks sucks have to be followed with “Chris should have won” and “Chris is outselling him?” Isn’t the musical world big enough for both of them?

    I personally think it’s a sad day indeed when selling 650K copies of a CD is considered a “failure,” but that’s beside the point. There will be bitter Chris/Elliott/Katharine fans who laugh and delight in the fact that Taylor isn’t selling as well as other artists and rub their hands together in glee at the possibility of his “failure.” To wish failure on another human being simply because you don’t personally like their musical style is a concept that escapes me. There’s an Idol or two I just cannot stand, but that’s my thing and I wish them all the best. So, to all those who have done so–wishing failure on Taylor Hicks because you don’t like his singing says more about you than it does about Taylor Hicks.

    Yes, I do think that Taylor’s novelty/dancing monkey status helped propel him to the win, but it’s simply not correct or fair to say that he “can’t sing.” In fact, several times during American Idol, the judges, even Simon Cowell, directly commented Taylor’s vocals, calling them “excellent” (Trouble), calling Taylor a “very good singer,” (Something), telling him he’d “just sung his way into the semifinals” (In the Ghetto), and even calling his performance of “You Are So Beautiful” better than those previously three mentioned songs. Simon Cowell has a part to play, so he now slams Taylor left and right, but yes, there was a time that even Simon trumpted Taylor’s voice. But it’s easy to revise history when you’re not a fan, I guess.

    On a final note, so what if Taylor’s CD isn’t selling? He’s raking in close to $60K a night doing concerts. Are CD sales the absolute be all/end all measuring stick of success? I don’t think so. Try telling that to the Katharine McPhee fans. She has sold less thatn 270K copies of her album so far, but her face is on almost every magazine imaginable, she’s a fixture on TRL, and seems to be on her way to becoming a Hollywood “it girl.” I’ve got my own issues with this (heh), but I dare anyone to say that Katharine isn’t a success because she’s not Daughty. Taylor is a success. His tour, his fans…they all prove that. Just because he didn’t sell a bajillion albums, or because radio won’t play his songs (they say he doesn’t fit in, and I believe them), doesn’t diminish the fact that he is making a LOT of people very, very happy with his music and performances. And no amount of “Taylor Hicks Sucks!” comments can make me change my mind :-)

  • George Tufts

    I think I see your problem, Please let me highlight them for you :

    1) You do not measure “success” by one narrow category – -album sales. Here’s why :
    A) Album sales in TOTAL are down by over 10% from over a year ago and are predicted to go down even further with the advent of sites like iTunes and now Zune. People don’t buy a lot of albums anymore. They pick and choose songs to download.

    B) Your GENRE of music is important. Taylor’s BLUES/FUNK/THROWBACK genre does not appeal to the CD buying crowd who prefer pop/hip hop/R&B/ALT ROCK type of music. That does not mean that Taylor is a joke, it simply means he’s different.

    2) If you bothered to go to Taylor Hick’s 55 city concert ( now halfway ), you would see that they are JAMPACKED and UNIVERSALLY ACCLAIMED, even by the mainstream press. That’s one other way to measure success. You strangely chose to gloss over it.

    3) The Idol show is about VERSATILITY, not necessarily selling records in a niche. Theme nights don’t reflect your ability to sell records. Taylor has shown that he was VERSATILE and CAN PERFORM. That’s why they voted for him.

    4) You mourn about Taylor’s record sales (which is solid by the way — 660,000 units isn’t something to be ashamed of It’s higher than 95% of artists).Yet, strangely, I do not see you talking about other winners and runner-ups who FAILED to even sell 600,000. Fantasia, Ruben, Clay Aiken FAILED to reach what Taylor sold in their latest albums ( Fantasia’s album was CRITICALLY ACCLAIMED ). The strange thing is inspite of this, you chose to label Taylor’s win a joke and then IGNORE the “failure” ( note the quotes ) of the other winners to sell platinum. WHY IS THAT ?

  • http://www.taylorhicksblues.blogspot.com Jewels

    The true premise of this show is becoming increasingly evident. Innocently billed during the early seasons as a contest to search for America’s best singing talent, time is revealing the show as more reality TV with singing contestants. Even definitions of the meaning of the name, American Idol have morphed.

    Majority of viewers and fans of the show, agree it takes more than a great voice, now we have ‘the whole package’ concept. This concept includes the contestants’ ability to entertain, enthrall and excite the studio audience and especially the TV viewers.

    Taylor Hicks won last year because he inspired viewers, he entertained, he stood out from the rest, and importantly represented in flesh and blood form what draws viewers to become fans of this show – the search for and achievement of a dream. The fact the man had a nice voice and performing talent did not hurt him. His fans fell in love with him largely because he was “Joe Everyman”. He wasn’t ‘cookie-cutter’ Pop Star with the perfect look, they could identify with him.

    Taylor Hicks showed what he was made of internally by even going on this show, much less the intelligence with how he handled himself while on the program. That is what won him the title. Selling over 600,000 units of his CD with the issues of dealing with the producers working his music presented on the album is a success.

    One thing many miss in concept, Clive Davis and the production staff are missing the mark more than hitting it when it comes to presenting and marketing music by the winners of this show.

    *cough* Bo Bice *cough*.

    Daughtry’s saving grace, he cut what he does best without any interference. His genre, that Nickelback, Hinder rock is absolutely popular with his fan type.

    Elliot has made a great move with the Indie label, showing sales success from the release.

    One other thing, the music industry is down overall, sales of CDs no matter who is delivering the product are down. I could cite sources, but I’m too lazy right now to go get the links. To say this contestant or that one should not go for it, to try to get as far up the Idol ladder to win this show is ridiculous. That sort of follows in line perhaps why so many folks are in the ranks of the unemployed, they don’t think they can make CEO so why bother.

    You see, whether you go platinum 4 times over or simply sell 700,000 copies, winning this show is the epitome. It is the CEO position. It is achieving that dream you set out to conquer. So diss Taylor Hicks all you want, he did it, he convinced a nation of folks to become fans and to vote, vote, vote and he won the title. In the long run and in the span of a lifetime he knows he achieved what he set out to do.

    Regardless of who anyone thinks will be ridiculed by perhaps winning this show and maybe not making world wide history and shaking the heavens in sales or whatever that seems to merit success that you all debate, the real American Idol title should go to the person who epitomizes “Idol”. The person who should win will be the one who inspires, who grabs you by the heart, who entertains, enlightens and above all, moves the viewing public.

    Definition of Idol, in Merriam-Webster varies from a representation or symbol of an object of worship to an object of extreme devotion to fallacy, a false conception.

  • funked

    I started watching AI during season four due to Bo..I cast my one vote each week like a normal person would. Then came his CD, which did not truly represent Bo’s talent or style.

    Then came the blitzkreig of AI5 and the ultimate contestant…Taylor Hicks. I logged $200 of text votes for him. He sparked a whole community of music lovers to unite behind him. Then came his CD, which like Bo’s, did not fully represent the artist. Of course it’s not sold well. He had to do the stuff they pushed on him, but was savvy and at least got three of his original songs on the CD.

    Conversely, Daughtry, by not winning it all, was allowed the freedom to record a product that truly represented the artist that he is. I think the Nickelback comparisons are getting pretty lame now….yeah there’s an influence but I think there’s a lot more layers to Daughtry than anyone realizes. The great thing is, not only will I be a forever fan of Taylor Hicks, I now am a big Daughtry fan and think his vocals on “What I Want” ranks as one of the best rock vocals this year. I don’t think an American Music award for best new rock artist, or dare I say a Grammy award, is totally out of the question for this year or in subsequent years. I do think Daughtry will have a sustained career and is more than a trendy rocker.

    Then there’s Elliott Yamin…who once again had the freedom to put out a quality product. Long live the Soul Train!

    I’ve learned the ways of AI…I won’t be duped into expensive text voting again, because AI5 proved that winning it all means nothing if the artist is not allowed to be who he/she really is on the first CD. It seems to be that TPTB would allow the winners more leeway instead of pushing the tunes penned by contracted songwriters. As we’ve seen with Daughtry, it pays off BIG for them AND the music-buying public.

  • Jim Rutz

    BTW, the statement you made that “Tens of Millions” voted for Taylor Hicks is probably exagerated.

    People POWER VOTE and ifthey’re enthusiastic for you, they vote over 50 or 100 times. Dial Idol has software that automates the process and many people downloaded it.

    I hazard to guess that Taylor’s 660,000 units were purchased by those who power voted.

    Also, let’s not overlook the fact that fans of other idols who got voted off also voted for Taylor.

  • Stephanie

    Please, can we stop with the constant “my Idol is better than your Idol” contests? The AI5 competition has been over for 10 months already! Give it a rest!

    I am a Taylor fan from Canada, and it breaks my heart to read all these constant criticisms about him. He is an experienced performer, he is wowing crowds every night on his tour to glowing reviews, and just because he sold less than expected (despite very little radio play or a video I might add) does NOT deem him a failure. He’s 30 years old, for goodness sake, he wouldn’t let himself get lured into the machine by TPTB, and this first album was merely a compromise. Once he’s free of his obligations, he can make the kind of music that he wants to make.

    All the comparisons and criticisms in the world can’t take away the fact that Taylor won the competition fair and square. Have you ever heard of the saying “slow and steady wins the race”? This is the route Taylor is taking. Where will Chris and Katharine be in 5 or 10 years down the road when Taylor becomes a true star? Think about it.

  • MaryS

    Taylor Hicks won because he entertained, moved and inspired enough people to keep him the voting front-runner almost the entire season. Some of those were devotees who power-voted and others were more casual fans of the show and Taylor Hicks who voted for him casually. That’s just the nature of the show.

    I think the fact that other Idol winners have sold better on their debuts is more a reflection of genre more than anything else. Taylor’s music doesn’t really “fit” well with what’s happening on commercial radio. It doesn’t matter to me if Taylor is played on Top 40 radio because I don’t listen to Top 40 radio, but I know it is important for record sales.

    Taylor Hicks has built a fanbase that will continue to buy his records and go to his concerts. He may never sell multi-millions because his music isn’t mainstream. But so what? It hasn’t hurt Jimmy Buffett after all these years.

    I reflect on the fact that many of the artists I like – the kind that don’t get played on Top 40 radio – aren’t selling multi-millions but are nevertheless taken seriously as artists and musicians. This applies to Taylor Hicks too.

    As an example, Keb’ Mo’, one of my favorites and a Grammy winning blues artist, sat in with Taylor Hicks on stage two nights ago in Chicago. Then Taylor Hicks was invited to share the stage with Keb’ and others after his own concert at Buddy Guy’s club.

    While you may not take Taylor Hicks seriously as a musician, other musicians do. Incidentally, despite being critically aclaimed, Keb’ Mo’s most recent album has sold less than 70,000 units. If unit sales is the only measure of success, I guess Keb’ Mo’ must be a failure. Personally, I think he’s a brilliant musician, but I don’t judge talent simply in quantitative terms. I feel the same way about Taylor Hicks.

  • sebby

    God, it’s all getting so old! This bashing of Taylor and pimping of Daughtry has made people weary. Let them go on with their lives and careers post Idol. They are so completely different. Their music just cannot be compared – the old apples and oranges. Let it go – please! Taylor has said he thinks Daughtry is a great song-writer. He wishes him well.

    Taylor is on the ride of a lifetime. He’s selling out venues across the country, receiving media praise across the board, playing with a kick-ass band, and living his dream. He didn’t achieve this by being a joke on American Idol. He’s a passionate, talented musician, who will be around long after his critics have moved on to berate someone else. (By the way, does anyone have an accurate count of the number of Taylor’s pre-Idol cd’s that have been sold at his shows? They’ve apparently been in great demand and are flying off the merchandise tables at each venue.) Not to worry about Mr. Hicks. He’ll have the last laugh.

  • sebby

    God, it’s all getting so old! This bashing of Taylor and pimping of Daughtry has made people weary. Let them go on with their lives and careers post Idol. They are so completely different. Their music just cannot be compared – the old apples and oranges. Let it go – please! Taylor has said he thinks Daughtry is a great song-writer. He wishes him well.

    Taylor is on the ride of a lifetime. He’s selling out venues across the country, receiving media praise across the board, playing with a kick-ass band, and living his dream. He didn’t achieve this by being a joke on American Idol. He’s a passionate, talented musician, who will be around long after his critics have moved on to berate someone else. (By the way, does anyone have an accurate count of the number of Taylor’s pre-Idol cd’s that have been sold at his shows? They’ve apparently been in great demand and are flying off the merchandise tables at each venue.) Not to worry about Mr. Hicks. He’ll have the last laugh.

  • play

    I won’t comment on the comparisons between the past Idol contestants. It’s been overdone. I will say that I am among the many who have seen Taylor Hicks live on his current solo tour. I will also say that it’s genius to perform in these smaller venues. I have seen concerts in the huge venues and needed binoculars to see the artist on stage.No thanks
    The Clive Davis’ in the music world need to hear the screams of people who are sick to death of the crappy music being shoved down our throats. Taylor Hicks won AI 5 because people want a change…Yes, Taylor Hicks will be just fine doing it HIS way.

  • Bill

    Taylor who?

  • Ann

    Clay Aiken is my favorite male singer and male entertainer. I love Clay Aiken! Clay Aiken Rocks!!! Clay Aiken Rules!!!

  • Anonymous in Tennessee

    In response to George Tuft’s post:

    “4) You mourn about Taylor’s record sales (which is solid by the way — 660,000 units isn’t something to be ashamed of It’s higher than 95% of artists).Yet, strangely, I do not see you talking about other winners and runner-ups who FAILED to even sell 600,000. Fantasia, Ruben, Clay Aiken FAILED to reach what Taylor sold in their latest albums ( Fantasia’s album was CRITICALLY ACCLAIMED ). The strange thing is inspite of this, you chose to label Taylor’s win a joke and then IGNORE the “failure” ( note the quotes ) of the other winners to sell platinum. WHY IS THAT ?”

    The thing you forget though is that Fantasia, Ruben, and Clay are not just coming off their exposure on Idol and Clay wasn’t even the winner. These are either their 2nd or 3rd CD’s released since 2003 and 2004. Taylor’s sales are solid, but just not for coming off the show last year as the winner. Also, he fell far short of selling platinum as the label had assumed he would and he is not even getting label support for radio play, and I think that stinks. That support is going to Daughtry, Kat, Kellie, Carrie, and Kelley. Personally, I like Taylor and I bet he does give a kick-butt live show.

  • George Tufts

    RE: The thing you forget though is that Fantasia, Ruben, and Clay are not just coming off their exposure on Idol and Clay wasn’t even the winner.

    Nonetheless, TIMES ARE DIFFERENT.

    iTunes and selective downloading of songs were not available during the debut CDs of Fantasia, Ruben and Clay.

    I believe part of the reason why Fantasia and Ruben are not doing so well today is PRECISELY because the record industry as a whole is undergoing technological change.

    Yes, Competition from respective fans of other contestants season 5 ( one of the best in Idol history ) plays a factor, as does the specific genre Taylor is in. Adult Contemporary moves quite slowly compared to say country.

    But my beef against this blog should not be overlooked… Comparing Sanjaya ( who can’t carry a concert on his own for the life of it ) to Taylor Hicks ( who obviously can, and who was already a professional musician when Sanjaya was still a toddler ) and then writing an article implying that last year’s winner is somewhat similar to the hapless Sanjaya shows the writer’s inability to keep key distinctions in mind.

  • http://www.taylorhicksblues.blogspot.com Jewels

    George, in defense of the writer of this story, I’m thinking the comparisons are not so much the talent, the experience or even the two being remotely similar individuals. Rather, I think, it’s more in line with this show being more about who tugs at the viewers heart strings during the show’s run. I mean, it has to be someone who inspires people to hit the phones and dedicate two hours of their life voting to get someone the title on this show.

    I do think the writer is in error trying to quote CD sales numbers to equate success in reference to this show. Success is winning the show. That is what this competition is really about. I mean you enter any competitive event to win, not place, right? Sales numbers are subject to what happens after the show, and in the case of the Idol contestants, management can be heavily blamed for lacking of projected sales success.

  • anon

    Craig, I totally agree. I think there’s a very simple solution to this problem. Only allow people to vote once. I don’t know if this is possible, but it would allow the person who actually got the most votes and not the person who’s fans crazily dialed their phone 207 times in a row, to come out on top. Plus, we wouldn’t have to hear Ryan brag about the 60 MILLION votes that came in. Also, for the people who aren’t insane fans, their vote will actually matter.
    Taylor was a joke, and a novelty act, and he managed to garner a pretty large fanbase. Good for him. But I think Daughtry outselling him and Katharine getting more media buzz than him has really made the show more legitimate. It’s about becoming discovered now, not winning. So thanks for sucking, Taylor!

  • http://www.filteringcraig.com FilteringCraig

    Jewels, I just feel like if tens of millions of people voted for Taylor Hicks, what were they really saying if they didn’t buy his album?

    They have lost touch with what the show is about.

  • Anonymous in Tennessee

    I sort of like the way the judging process is handled at Dancing With The Stars. At least the judges can put someone at the bottom of the pack who actually has little or no talent, although I sometimes have little faith in Idol’s three judges and whether through the years they have lost some perspective about what the show was originally created to find. Also, I’m afraid that Sanjaya’s longevity on the show is actually taking credibility away from the previous performers who have actually had some talent. The whole Idol machine is becoming more of a punch line now.

  • http://www.taylorhicksblues.blogspot.com Jewels

    Filtering Craig, the show began innocently enough as a talent search, but with the game as it is currently set, no way would it remain so. Past guest Peter Noone was spot on in his assessment that this is a voting competition.

    Regarding Hicks, the product that was released has facets of Taylor but it is not what many fans of his anticipated he’d put out, at least not what I was waiting to hear. Granted Clive and Co. did not completely “Bice” him, but they did adversely affect the product. I bought one to support the guy, I believe he’s going to have his level of success and I’m glad he won last year – he deserved to if you are playing by the current Idol situation.

    I read an article yesterday, I’ll have to search the link about this situation with 19E, and the American Idol CD machine. It was very good.

    I agree with the #32 post. Stars voting system is better. You are allowed in 11 votes per telephone line and then you are cut off. Now of course, you could get all sorts of phones involved but if the limit is 11 calls each, why bother?

    I would not be surprised if the rules on voting change after this season.

  • http://www.taylorhicksblues.blogspot.com Jewels

    Rickey Minor, Idol music director says, “It’s taking an average, ordinary person and changing the course of their life. It shows that whatever you want out of your life, you can actually do it. People become entrenched in the stories and they’re pulling for these people — it’s personal now, it’s not even about the singing. And it’s one of the few shows on television that the whole family can sit and watch. The grandmothers love it because Tony Bennett is going to be on the show or they’re going to sing Moon River. So it sparks conversation with the family.”

    This comes from an interview, called,
    “Man Behind the Music”
    .

  • George Tufts

    RE:
    =============
    I just feel like if tens of millions of people voted for Taylor Hicks, what were they really saying if they didn’t buy his album?
    ============

    1) There were NOT Tens of millions who voted. It was closer to less than a million. Motivated voters voted scores of times and you have to take that into account.

    2) Software for dialing like DIALIDOL allows voters ( motivated ones ) to vote HUNDREDS of times. That has to be taken into account.

    3) Fans of idols who are not fans of Taylor CROSSED OVER to vote for Taylor after their idol was voted out ( e.g. Elliott and Bucky ).

    4) The show’s theme nights FAVOR Taylor BECAUSE they favor VERSATILITY and ability to understand genres in the past ( Queen, Elvis, American Standards ).

    Today’s record buyers in a sense are being EDUCATED about their musical past ( their heritage ). THAT DOES NOT MEAN THEY WILL BUY records of people who are good at throwback music ( the way Idol theme nights are ). They buy based on MODERN NICHES ( e.g. hip hop, rap, country, R&B ).

    Keeping the above in mind will help you understand why Taylor won and also help you ignore the premise of this particular blog that calls Taylor’s win a cruel joke.

    What is Craig ( the writer ) going to say next when Melinda ( the best singer, who sings within her comfort zone ) wins this season and doesn’t sell a million while younger ones like Jordin and Blake, whose styles are more attuned to today’s style outsell her ? Is he going to Melinda’s victory a cruel joke too ?

  • George Tufts

    RE:

    ————-
    But I think Daughtry outselling him and Katharine getting more media buzz than him has really made the show more legitimate.
    ————-

    If I were to use this argument, then I’d have to say that William Hung ( who according to his admission in Larry King’s show, is now a millionaire ), who outsold the likes of Latoya London and Diana Degarmo is more legitimate because his album sold close to 300,000 while Diana’s and Latoya’s did not even come close. Is that how we’re going to measure success now ? Now that kind of reasoning is a joke.

    And oh BTW, Kat Mcphee’s album still needs to sell another 300,000 to reach Taylor’s sales. She’s getting buzz because of her cover girl looks. Not saying it’s a bad thing but let’s put things in perspective.

  • Pinky

    WAKE-UP AMERICA!!! Or should I more correctly say: Wake-up! – you “American Idoler’s and Idolees”! or, I could say: “Ladies and Gentlemen”; even better yet, how about: “boys and girls”

    Whatever… School is in session now – pay attention boys and girls. How many have heard the following quote: “A Rose, by any other name, is still a Rose”.

    This means that once a rose is a rose; it’s always a rose; (and for those who missed that and didn’t understand it, here it is in simpler form: “a rose, is a rose, is a rose, is a rose”)

    NOW..what does all this mean??? Well…follow me now…here we go again with the same reasoning:

    “The WINNER, is the WINNER, is the WINNER, is the WINNER”

    Very good class; NOW…let’s look closely at the following; time for a little math: “The fourth (4th) place finisher = Winner

    hmmmmmm…..Things that make you go hmmmmmmm…. Einstein would probaly roll over in his grave at this equation, because it simply does not compute.

    O.K.class…next, let’s look at the means by which a democratic society chooses it’s winners: I believe it’s called ‘voting’. We can say what we want, smooth it over all we want, or try to give excuses all we want; BUT, like it or not, anyway you slice the pie, whoever gets the most votes IS the WINNER! Obviously…and I repeat, OBVIOUSLY..the winner is MORE popular Agreed…right Class???

    Are you with me?? Follow me now… SO…if someone comes in fourth (not third, like Elliott Yamin; or even second, like Katharine McPhee, and definetly, most assuredly not FIRST, like the WINNER Taylor Hicks) how is it that said person can, all-of-a-sudden, presto-chango, magically become ‘seemingly more popular’ (emphasis on ‘seemingly’, because I am of the persuasion that things are not what they ‘appear’ to be).

    We’re almost finished class… NOW…being the intellectual that I am, I pondered these things (and, from what I have read on the internet, many thousands of others are pondering the same thing) and as I began to put the pieces of the puzzle together from what I percieved to be “all the buzz” on this subject of “radio payola(pay-for-play)” AND inflation of the CD sales #’s…all of a sudden…THE LIGHT CAME ON…BINGO…it all made perfect sense; here it is: Mr. “Fourth Place Popularity Man” is not REALLY that popular afterall; at least not enough to persuade buyers to purchase millions of CD’s at a time when CD sales are in a downward trend (do your homework folks). What it boils down to people, is that the “people’s(voters) choice” for their winner, is totally different from the choice of the American Idol ‘powers that be’, and if you think having the support and backing (legally/illegally) of the all-mighty music indutry, does not lead to a big-time career boost, than think again. Check out this link.

    To you, Mr. Craig Lyndall, there is no ‘disconnect between American Idol and Voters’. How dare you imply that millions of voters are ‘disconnected'; it borders on calling the public “stupid”. Shame on you! If your favorite didn’t win, well…too bad; but attempting to downplay the REAL WINNER’s WIN, is not only silly, but it’s ridiculous, and borders on the absurd. Sanjaya is Sanjaya; and Taylor is Taylor; last season is over, and Taylor WON; this is the sixth season…concentrate on THAT.

    Unlike last season (Season 5), I think American Idol is a BIG joke this season, and partly because of the way they have snubbed last year’s winner, the voters are saying…SCREW YOU American Idol, if you don’t like who the public picks for THEIR winner(like last year), then we’re not going to take it serioiusly this year; afterall, it really doesn’t matter WHO the public votes for; it’s a SHAM, A FARCE, because ultimately, they choose who THEY want.

    CLASS DISMISSED!!

  • anon

    RE: And oh BTW, Kat Mcphee’s album still needs to sell another 300,000 to reach Taylor’s sales. She’s getting buzz because of her cover girl looks. Not saying it’s a bad thing but let’s put things in perspective.

    ———–

    Kat has sold almost half of what taylor has sold. Not to mention, he put an album about more than a month before her. Her sales are increasing as well. She still has a chance to redeem herself on the charts. Taylor, on the other hand has fallen off completely. He will not sell well. And his second album will do much worse.

  • George Tufts

    RE:

    —————————
    She still has a chance to redeem herself on the charts. Taylor, on the other hand has fallen off completely. He will not sell well. And his second album will do much worse.
    ————————-

    Get back to me in a month and in a year and then we’ll talk. Mcphee’s and Hick’s albums have BOTH fallen off the top 100 at Amazon even as we speak.

    All the above he/she will or he/she won’t is pure speculation. Hick’s concerts are selling out and an original 23 venue concert has more than doubled in demand to 55 venues. How you can predict what will happen to his second album, I don’t know.

    Obviously I wish both Hicks and Mcphee well, but I don’t have a crystal ball regarding how many they will sell and neither I suspect, does anyone

  • Jonathan Head

    Go to ConcertFans.com and look.

    Find the name Taylor Hicks and look at how HOT the ticket sales for his solo concerts are. Also, look at the reviews. They are all HOT HOT HOT.

    Folks, only a handful of Idol contestants can even DREAM of doing a solo tour with this much enthusiastic response.

    Taylor Hicks a joke ? Hmmm… these thousands of audience who are selling out his concerts must be so stupid that they are paying $40 to $80 to throw away good money for this joke (sarcasm tag turned on).

  • Gina Lee

    I’ve been to Taylor’s concert at the Chicago House of Blues concert… it was awesome. Blues legend Keb’ Mo’ honored him by actually appearing and performing the standard — SWEET HOME CHICAGO.

    What greater honor than to have this ? Another legend Buddy Guy invited Taylor to perform at his club after the concert.

    Look, there are many ways to measure success — one is acceptance by your peers who are greats themselves.

    There are many groups who have gone to the top and eventually were forgotten. Remember the STARLAND VOCAL BAND ? They were a one hit wonder who won a Grammy and proceeded to be forgotten.

    LONGEVITY is the key folks. Keb’ Mo’s album SUITCASE was nominated for a Grammy this year. He only sold 70,000 copies. He is considered a legend and has been in the business for over 30 years. Still doing records and performing and critically acclaimed in his genre.

    Is that a Joke Mr. Lyndall ?

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    I wish that the Chris vs. Taylor comparisons would stop. They’re two very talented but different artists with genres of music that appeal to two separate crowds. Both are doing well and are happy with their careers. Yes, a small part of me still wishes that Chris won, but who cares? This is almost as ridiculous as the Ruben/Clay debate from 4 years ago.

  • Saundra

    “Kat has sold almost half of what taylor has sold. Not to mention, he put an album about more than a month before her. Her sales are increasing as well. She still has a chance to redeem herself on the charts.”
    ——–

    Well, not really almost half. The numbers you were responding to were wrong – Taylor’s sales are 661,000; Kat’s are 270,000 (she had been going down every week since her debut of 116,000 and her team started pouring the advertising dollars out there again and she had a bit of a surge this week, selling 11,000 as opposed to 10,000 last week. She’s climbing slowly, but it’s taken her two months to get those sales and they’ve promoted the heck out of her – when they slack off, she plummets.)
    —–

    “Taylor, on the other hand has fallen off completely. He will not sell well. And his second album will do much worse.”

    Gosh, I wish I could predict the future.

    Taylor is a winner, anon. He’s having a very successful tour and getting really positive reviews, and that is where his success lies.

  • Dragondays

    To the person above who so condescendingly called the CLASS to order.

    The winner doesn’t matter 5 minutes after the lights go out and the confetti hits the floor on finale night.

    Also, consider this. Many of the votes are cast against someone instead of FOR them. This happened in season 2. Many voted for Ruben as a way to knock out Clay. The votes don’t reflect anything about what the future in THE REAL WORLD will bring. The public doesn’t CARE who won. They only care about the music.

    Season 5 is OVER. Get over the idea that Taylor won anything more than a recording contract, because that’s all there is folks.

    Now he needs to sell himself. If he still has a career in 5 years, he survived.

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    To add to what Dragonsays said above…

    The idea that the numbers for Daughtry’s sales are falsified is the stupidest and most pathetic thing I’ve ever heard of. Enough with the comparisons.

    BUT, like it or not, anyway you slice the pie, whoever gets the most votes IS the WINNER! Obviously…and I repeat, OBVIOUSLY..the winner is MORE popular Agreed…right Class???

    Then explain how Clay Aiken’s debut CD hit double platinum within a week of release, while Ruben Studdard -the WINNER- took about a month for it to even hit gold, let alone platinum.

    Or perhaps it was more “false numbers”, right? I dare you to say that to any Claymate.

  • anne

    Pinky… payola is the factor here that make the difference for sure. you can;t tell any resonable thinking adult that Daughtry gained that many fans from May to November and ..Taylor, Katherine and Elliott lost that many. Just doesn’t make sense. When something doesn’t seem exactly right it usually isn’t. Most people I know who love rock said they would rather buy the real Nickleback then a copy cat cd. No, the record co and management are paying big time.
    Kaonashi.. payola has been going on in the record business since recording began. Check the facts.ummmm no so ridiculous.

  • John Marks

    RE:

    ——————–
    I wish that the Chris vs. Taylor comparisons would stop. They’re two very talented but different artists with genres of music that appeal to two separate crowds.
    ——————-

    The ones who are fanning the flames of this silly debate are the ones who aren’t simply happy praising one idol for his/her personal achievements, but the ones who at the same time have to also DISS another contestant or (mostly) Taylor Hicks by calling him a “joke”.

    Why can’t we simply celebrate each idol’s individual success whatever path he/she chooses to take — concert, tour, CD sales, Broadway, etc. ?

    Unfortunately, this isn’t the case. This particular blog is a case in point. Can’t talk about the Sanjaya phenomena without having to implicitly insult the hundreds of thousands who SERIOUSLY and SINCERELY believe that Taylor deserved his victory by calling him a joke, thus implying that those who DID vote for him are either tone deaf or trying to turn the show into a joke.

    Hope you understand the frustrations of those who read this article.

  • http://www.filteringcraig.com Craig Lyndall

    Album sales aren’t the only measure of success, but let’s be serious here. They are a pretty huge indicator.

    With all the talk going on here, the one thing that I can say is that nobody has poked a hole in my argument that there is a disconnect between voters and their willingness to support a guy’s CD. It still seems disproportionate.

    I also don’t think the numbers of people who are voting with machines and other technological means are TOTALLY taking over the contest. The TV share numbers alone would indicate that Hicks should have been able to sell at least a million copies of his album right now, especially with the show being active currently.

  • http://oncemoore.blogspot.com Doug Moore

    Maybe no one releases that VOTING FOR SANJAY IS A GAG. A Joke. PEOPLE want the worst to win to stick it to American IDOL!

    Check out VotefortheWorst.com and Howard Stern apparently is pushing to vote for Sanjay. B/c he is the worst.

  • Dragondays

    “With all the talk going on here, the one thing that I can say is that nobody has poked a hole in my argument that there is a disconnect between voters and their willingness to support a guy’s CD. It still seems disproportionate.”

    Chris Daughtry has about 20,000 spins a week across 8 formats of radio.

    Clay Aiken got 119 spins a week and after a few weeks his song was dropped.
    Taylor got about 250 spins a week and is now falling like a stone.

    These are not accidents, nor are they a reflection of the quality of the song or the artist. This is No Label Support, plain and simple. No Payola. No Play the song. No Radio = low record sales. It’s elementary marketing.

    Chris Daughtry is heard every 15 minutes on almost every station. Anyone could sell a few million CDs of cats wailing Amazing Grace with enough radio exposure.

    Let’s see what Taylor or Clay could sell with that kind of relentless promotion.

  • Jane

    ———————
    Album sales aren’t the only measure of success, but let’s be serious here. They are a pretty huge indicator.
    ———————

    I’m not sure if that is true on 2007 as it was in 2003. If we want to listen to one or two songs from an album, we download those one or two songs. We don’t need to buy the entire album.

    DO I MAKE YOU PROUD, for instance is the 4th best selling single coming out of Idol ( displacing Carrie Underwood’s Inside Your Heaven ). People didn’t go out and buy his single as a CD, they DOWNLOADED it. There was no lack of support for Taylor.

    As for Taylor Hicks, most of his fans prefer to see him LIVE.

    So, the question still remains, why did he not sell a million ?

    I can count several reasons :

    1) Lack of support from American Idol producers.
    Just look at the show this season, Taylor is hardly ever pimped. When Simon Cowell goes on interviews he trashes Taylor and says he prefers you-know-who ( TWO TIMES ALREADY ).

    HOME is the Idol boot song instead of JUST TO FEEL THAT WAY ( which is just as appropriate ). When Ryan touts the success stories of Idol, they show Jennifer Hudson, Carrie, Kellie, Chris and NO TAYLOR ( would showing snippets of his sold out concert not be considered success ?).

    These are just examples of Taylor being snubbed.

    2) Radio stations continually IGNORE fan requests for Taylor’s single to be played and most of these stations are owned by CLEAR CHANNEL ( a virtual monopoly ).

    So, going back to Sanjaya… what could explain his survival ?

    Let me hazzard a guess…a lot of Voters who voted for Taylor last season are saying to the show — OK, you continue to snub our choice last season as if our votes were a joke. So, why bother to vote this season, or if we do, we might as well vote the joke instead of vote seriously.

    Hence, you will notice the DROP IN TOTAL VOTES THIS SEASON ( about 20% ) compared to last season.

    You will also notice the relative apathy of viewers this season compared to last season ( Viwership down ).

    Just my teo cents worth.

  • Dragondays

    I forgot to add:

    It isn’t a lack of willingness to buy the CDs. Scratch most AI viewers and you’ll find that the majority have no idea that the ones without radio have released a CD or what it sounds like. If you haven’t heard any of the songs yourself, many may also buy into the critics that negatively review the AI alumni CDs without ever breaking the seal on the CD.

  • Mark Silva

    I would like to also add that ALBUM SALES ARE DOWN ACROSS THE BOARD. Nothing less that the Wall Street Journal has written about it.

    Jennifer Hudson’s DREAMGIRLS album coming after her OSCAR Triumph hardly moved the album ( and it reached the top of the charts ).

    This OVERALL industry phenomenon should be taken into consideration. The industry is experiencing a major shakeout.

  • Dragondays

    “I’m not sure if that is true on 2007 as it was in 2003. If we want to listen to one or two songs from an album, we download those one or two songs. We don’t need to buy the entire album.”

    Don’t kid yourself. The peer to peer file sharing was rampant in 2003. Free was even easier than iTunes.

  • Erica

    RE:

    —————–
    Now, it seems that all you people ever really wanted to do was laugh at the young guy with the gray hair and the “Soul Patrol” as he danced cheesily into votes that never meant what he thought they meant.
    —————-

    NOT TRUE. I live in the midwest and have many friends who watched the show last season ( less enthusiastic last season ).

    He voted for him not because he was cheesy but because we believed his was the TOTAL PACKAGE.

    No, not all of us say he has the best voice. But we say he had a GOOD VOICE and appealed to a lot of us. Please don’t speak for us Mr. Lyndall. We know why we voted for him and it isn’t the cheese factor.

    I don’t know why Mr. Lyndall is comparing Taylor to Sanjaya ( who looks like a deer in the headlights when he performs ). Two TOTALLY DIFFERENT performers altogether.

  • Trixi

    Success shouldn’t always be measured by the unholy dollar,or any other numbers. Many people believe success in life comes from being able to do what you have a passion for, and be able to make a comfortable living from it. Some people prefer spending time with the ones they love, instead of spending 80+ hours at their job. So to say that you have to sell 1 million or more cd’s to be successful is just someone else’s opinion.

    Taylor is doing things his way. He is using his win on AI to HIS advantage. Simon owns part of the record label that Daughtry is on. Don’t you think it is natural that he is going to pimp who ever fills his pockets more?

    It is a known fact that the artist gets very little from the sell of a cd. They make their money from touring and merchandising.

    Many artists have made a good living from never having sold a million copies of their cd’s.

    I guess it all goes back to everyone’s own opinion as to what success is.

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    Anne- Payola used to be more rampant during the 60’s, but it’s illegal nowadays. It’s insulting to Daughtry that the only reason he’s selling CDs is because the Powers that Be are bribing stations. Besides, a powerful company like 19th E wouldn’t be stupid enough to pull off something that risky when they don’t need to.

    This brings me to one of the points I made earlier, about Idol alums gaining new fans after the show. Can’t it be possible that Daughtry managed to gain some fans who never watched the show, while Hicks maintained most of the same ones? I recall reading many comments from iTunes from people who bought Daughtry’s music not even realizing that he was from American Idol. They just thought it sounded good and bought it.

    And once again, why still compare the two? Or any of the past contestants, for that matter? Season 5 is over. Why can’t you support your favorite without talking dirty about another one?

  • Shinamari

    Count me in as one of the many who voted for Taylor Hicks last season who DID NOT buy his CD.

    Count me in as one of those who went to his concert at Tampa when he came here last month.

    So, why did I vote for him but did not buy his CD ?

    Simple, I don’t listen to his genre when I buy CDs. I am in my early twenties and I prefer to buy CDs with modern sounding music.

    Look, I love Mozart and Beethoven. That does not mean I’ll spend money buying CDs with their music.
    But if an artist comes to town performs their music, I just might cough up the dollars to watch him. Same reasoning with Taylor.

    Look, I watch American Idol and happen to know that most of the songs these contestants perform are oldies. In the case of Taylor her performed Elvis, Queen, 1950’s music and American Standards.

    I voted for him because of all the contestants, he happened to be the best OVERALL — Vocals, performance, ability to connect. I stopped voting for Chris Daughtry after I realized that the theme nights like American Standards and Elvis don’t fit his genre and don’t want to see him embarrased by having to perform some cheesy coronation song that does not fit his alt/rock image.

    I suspect that there many people who think like me.

    But going back to Craig’s original premise. This might surprise you , but we DID pick out someone who can sing, put on flashy performances, and look good doing it. That’s right folks. All three. And the person happened to be TAYLOR HICKS. And he deserved to win.

    Doesn’t mean that I’d by any CD he comes out with.

    This season, the best singer happens to be IMHO Melinda Doolittle. But I suspect I might buy Chris Richardson’s or Blake Lewis CD’s over hers. Heck, I already prefer Chris Sligh’s CD over any of the oldies Lakisha Jones comes out with.

  • Joe Goode

    RE: Jane’s post above …

    ——————-
    Lack of support from American Idol producers.
    Just look at the show this season, Taylor is hardly ever pimped. When Simon Cowell goes on interviews he trashes Taylor and says he prefers you-know-who ( TWO TIMES ALREADY ).
    ——————–

    Actually I can count the following insults from Simon Cowell…

    1) He OPENLY declared on two occasions on TV interviews that he didn’t want Taylor to win and did not care for his music.

    2) When an auditioner came in this season chewing gum, he asked him to take the gum out of his mouth and STICK IT ON TAYLOR’s face ( the picture behind him ).

    Such open disgust and disrespect for last years winner has not gone un-noticed.

    Of course, in a montage of sccenes showing past idol winners that were “successful”, they showed :

    Jennifer Hudson, Oscar Winner ( fair weathered promoters, I call them. Where were they when she was not a winner ?)

    Kellie Clarkson and her Grammies
    Carrie Underwood and her Grammies
    Fantasia as a Broadway Star.

    And lo and behold … Chris Daughtry as a platinum selling artist.

    Notice who they failed to mention …. if you said the most recent winner, no price for you– IT’s THAT OBVIOUS.

    How about simply picking up a scene from their FOX affiliates in say, Atlanta and showing the enthusiastic sold out crowds rocking to Taylor’s music and touting his sold out concerts ?

    But no… Taylor does not deserve any mention.

    DISRESPECT FOR YOUR RECENT WINNER TRANSLATES TO A BIG MIDDLE FINGER TO THOSE WHO VOTED FOR HIM LAST SEASON. What the AI folks are telling us is this — Your vote last season was a fluke, it didn’t count and we don’t consider it significant.

    Well, if that’s their attitude, good luck to them. They deserve what they’re getting this season.

  • Kyle

    Here are the first week CD sales of each Idol alum for perspective :

    Debut CD Album First Week Sales:

    Clay – “Measure of a Man” – 612,859 (# 1)
    Ruben – “Soulful” – 416,569 (# 1)
    Carrie – “Some Hearts” – 314,549 (# 2)
    Chris – “Daughtry” – 303,677 (# 2)
    Taylor – “Taylor Hicks” – 298,199 (# 2)
    Kelly – “Thankful” – 297,000 (# 1)
    Fantasia – “Free Yourself” – 239,389 (# 8)
    Bo – “The Real Thing” – 226,976 (# 4)
    Katharine – “Katharine McPhee” – 115,761 (# 2)
    Elliott – “Elliott Yamin” – 90,439 (# 3)
    Kellie – “Small Town Girl” – 79,133 (# 9)
    Josh – “Joshua Gracin” – 57,048 (# 11)
    Justin – “Justin Guarini” – 57,000 (# 20)
    Kim – “One Love” – 56,894 (# 16)
    Diana – “Blue Skies” – 47,000 ( # 52)
    Tamyra – “Dreamer” – 39,091 (# 23)
    LaToya – “Love and Life” – 12,546 (# 82)
    Mario – “Mario Vasquez” – 11,812 (# 80)
    Constantine – “Pray for the Soul of Betty” – 7,467 (# 129)
    Jasmine – “Jasmine Trias” – 4855
    John Stevens – “Red” – 4349
    Jim Verraros – “Rollercoster” – 1571
    Corey Clark – “Corey Clark” – 557
    Ayla Brown – “Forward” – 300

  • Anthony

    Let me see what the problem with Taylor’s CD is …

    As his concert shows, Taylor may do pretty good covers of many artists but his album is not a reflection of this style, at all. His album is more like Keith Urban rather than Michael McDonald. Taylor likes soul music but he’s not making soul music.

    THAT is the problem. Tell Taylor to go back into his element ( listen to his original music in his two previous indie released albums ) and maybe we might have more sales.

    I am one of the Taylor fans who feels that he was more soulful on his debut albums (Under the Radar and In Your Time) than on this one.

    In fact, I definitely feel Elliott had more soul on his debut CD than Taylor did (although I view Elliott as neo-soul anyways). Taylor’s CD wasn’t anything that I thought modern soul music (or even “whomp”) would sound like.

    Another factor…Elliott went indie, Taylor didn’t…he didn’t escape ALL corporate influence…

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    Kyle- Thanks for digging up those numbers. Do you have a link for them?

    Anthony- That goes back to one of the points I made in my first comment. The winner of AI does not get to make the album he/she really wants to make. The result is often commercialized, mediocre material that the person would normally not dream of making.

    Of COURSE Taylor didn’t escape corporate influence- he was the winner. His body and soul belongs to AI for who knows how long. Clay was smart. He quickly hired powerful lawyers who released him from the soul-sucking, original AI contract.

  • Remo

    I just watched Taylor’s concert at the House of Blues in Chicago a few days ago.

    Man was the show SMOKING HOT ! You have to have a heart of wood not to enjoy the sheer joy and exhuberance Taylor gives to his audience. If it’s good old fashioned musical entertainment you want, you got it here. I can understand the kind of motivation he gives to American for voting for him. If you can’t understand why, I suggest you spend $40 to watch him perform ( as I did ).

    All I can say is I am an avid concert goer. I’ve been to the concerts of the Eagles,Dave Matthews Band, the Allman Brothers, Alabama, Sheryl Crowe, Eric Clapton and Bon Jovi. I am not exagerating when I say that Taylor ranks up there with the best of them.

    Craig Lyndall said this in his blog :

    “That way, the winner will have a career when the show is over. That means that America needs to pick someone who they would be willing to see in concert.”

    Well, I and thousands of others who jampacked his sold-out concert just did, and all I can say is this — HE CLEARLY DESERVED TO WIN THE CROWN. I’d go further than this — He has gone beyond American Idol to establish a name for himself in the concert circuits.

    If Jimmy Buffet has his Parrotheads, consider me a Soul Patroler. I think Taylor will have a similar career to that of Jimmy Buffet. Which isn’t a bad thing to have ( Buffet is ranked #5 by Rolling Stones as the highest money maker among the music artists last year ).

  • Remo

    Let me add this about his Chicago concert… Taylor clearly has the respect of his fellow musicians who have made a name for themselves in the music business. Blues legends like Keb’ Mo’ and Buddy Guy performed with him that night ( Keb’ Mo’ actually backed him up at guitar in his encore rendition of SWEET HOME CHICAGO ).

    I’d like to see other idols do a 55 city solo tour and sell out their venues like Taylor Hicks does. can Sanjaya do it ? Just asking ( after all you’re the one comparing them right ?).

  • Joe Goode

    Remo,

    I’m glad you mentioned Jimmy Buffet.

    Now here’s a guy who doesn’t usually sell CD’s and isn’t really a Billboard charting singer ( OK, I take it back, he has charted once in a while ).

    But his forte is KEEPING a dedicated fan base for years. This gives him LONGEVITY. Buffet is of course one of the richest performers in the world ( not many people know it though ). Last year, he made more money then the likes of Mariah Carey and Justin Timberlake according to Rolling Stone ( not many people know that either ).

    Taylor Hicks, in an interview once said that he would love to have a career similar to Jimmy Buffet. I think the Soul Patrol might just grant him his wish.

  • http://www.taylorhicksblues.blogspot.com Jewels

    Wow, this has sparked heated debates – and to Doug Moore, #49 -word – not everyone rooting for Malakar is doing so to contribute to the demise of the reality show. Get a clue and tune it buddy this kid may surprise you and all the other ‘experts’. It takes more than a technically superior vocal technique to win Idol. You have to captivate the hearts of viewers. Life 101.

  • http://www.filteringcraig.com Craig Lyndall

    I think some of you are missing my point. I am not blaming Taylor Hicks for not being good. I am blaming viewers of the show for sending mixed messages by picking a winner and then supporting a non-winner a whole lot more.

    It isn’t Taylor’s fault, it is the viewers’ fault who didn’t back up their votes.

  • Fan tastic

    RE:

    —————
    Blues legends like Keb’ Mo’ and Buddy Guy performed with him that night ( Keb’ Mo’ actually backed him up at guitar in his encore rendition of SWEET HOME CHICAGO ).
    ————–

    I think I know what the problem with Taylor Hicks is and the above post gives us a clue.

    With all due respect — WHO THE HECK ARE Keb’ Mo’ and Buddy Guy ? I don’t see them on the charts. Other than blues aficionados, I don’t think anybody else knows who they are. I know names like Justin Timberlake, Akon, Omarion, Usher, etc. but who the heck are these guys Remo mentions ?

    And THAT is the reason why Taylor isn’t selling as much as we expect him to.

    Notice the kind of people he associates with and you get the reason why….while Daughtry patterns himself after best selling groups like Nickleback and Bon Jovi, Taylor chooses to pattern himself with the likes of “legends” very few people ever hear about. Do we ever hear the music of Keb Mo or Buddy Guy on the radio ? NO.

    Who for instance does Carrie Underwood pattern herself after ? Answer — Martina Mcbride and Shania Twain. BOTH VERY MUCH ALIVE and BOTH CHART BUSTERS in the country scene today.

    But what about Taylor ? He’s trying to be like Otis Redding ( DEAD ), Sam Cooke ( DEAD ), Marvin Gaye ( DEAD ) and Ray Charles ( DEAD ). How do you expect his album to sell when he’s trying to become a one man throwback revival all by his lonesome ? No one but oldies radio will touch your music with a 10 foot poll if you do this and that is exactly what’s happening.

    Which brings me back to my second point — WHY TAYLOR WON. He won BECAUSE he DESERVED TO.

    American Idol as a show, is not tailored towards showcasing the strengths of a singer AS A CONTEMPORARY ARTIST, but rather to showcase a singer’s VERSATILITY in trying to cover various genres ( MOSTLY IN THE PAST ).

    Just look at the genres in the theme nights of last season — Elvis, Queen, 1950’s music, American Standards. Heck Taylor even “cheated” a bit by picking an old Beatle song — SOMETHING to sing in Billboard Charting night.

    Look at what we have in Season 6 thus far — Diana Ross, British Invasion ( essentially 60’s music ), Gwen Stefani ( and what did they cover ? heck, songs done by the POLICE ), and next week we have Tony Bennett ( a guy who is 80 years old ), then we have guests in the pipeline like Barry Gibb of the Bee Gees.

    Of course TAYLOR HICKS will win this competition. THE THEME NIGHTS MOSTLY FAVOR his throwback style of music !!

    But AFTER THE SHOW IS OVER, such music isn’t what people who buy CD’s purchase today.

    So, I hope you begin to understand why Taylor isn’t selling as you expect and why he WON American Idol.

    The reason is simple — THE SHOW’s THEMES FAVOR HIS STYLE, but his style isn’t what the CD buying public buy, neither is it what today’s POP radio want to play.

    My guess is this — If Melinda Doolitle continues to coast through Season 6 by singing old songs like MY FUNNY VALENTINE or AS LONG AS HE NEEDS ME and WINS it all — Her label will also find it hard to market her instead of the more contemporary but nasal sounding Chris Richardson.

    It’s as simple as that.

  • Blog watcher

    Notice how the absence of an interesting performer like Taylor Hicks is affecting this season’s American Idol ratings :

    The vote totals (as announced by Ryan Seacrest at some point during the results show) is down a whopping 33% from last year for the Top 10 show. That is a significant drop.

    VOTE TOTALS
    Season 6 Season 5 Percent Drop
    Top 24 40M 30M -20%
    Top 20 42M 32M -24%
    Top 16 46M 37M -20%
    Top 12 32.5M 28M -14%
    TOP 11 35M 30M -14%
    Top 10 45M 30M -33%

    American Idol is still a ratings juggernaut, but clearly interest and emotional investment in the current crop of contestants is DOWN across the board. WE NEED SOMEONE LIKE TAYLOR HICKS !

  • Jim Rutz

    Fan tastic is right.

    We’re so used to the American Idol winner selling a million copies on the outset that we forget one thing — WINNING THE SHOW DOES NOT NECESARILY TRANSLATE TO PLATINUM SALES.

    I go one further — Not having platinum sales does not necessarily mean an unsuccessful music career.

    The Grateful Dead did not chart at Billboard until 20 years AFTER they started peforming and touring and garnering fans in the concert circuit.

    So, let’s all cut this unrealistic expectations about album sales. There’s more than one way to look at success.

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    Fan Tastic has given some very valid points. The themes often featured on the show cater to an older audience, but those who actually buy CDs (or buy mp3s online) are significantly younger.

    Therefore, the disconnection isn’t really between the voters and the winners of American Idol; it’s more between them and the “real world” of music buyers.

  • http://www.filteringcraig.com Craig Lyndall

    ——–
    So, let’s all cut this unrealistic expectations about album sales. There’s more than one way to look at success.
    ——–

    With the numbers of people watching the show, I don’t think a million copies of the album being sold for the winner of the show is all that unrealistic.

  • http://www.taylorhicksblues.blogspot.com Jewels

    Kaonashi hit the mark with her observation: “Therefore, the disconnection isn’t really between the voters and the winners of American Idol; it’s more between them and the “real world” of music buyers.”
    Craig, I think that sums up the situation – it’s not a matter of Hicks not being supported by his fans, it’s evident he is seeing support through the numbers attending his concerts.

    Regarding #61, Anthony, his comments on the music not being what he expected “Whomp” to define, I completely agree. The tunes on the CD are overly smooth and not the raw soul sound I had expected.

    Of course, like many have pointed out, with Clive behind the production, even Taylor Hicks could not have overthrown his influence.

  • Jane

    BTW, I’ve been to Taylor’s concerts.

    I notice two songs are prominently missing in his set list.

    1) PLACES I’VE BEEN by Dianne Warren. That was in his album. He has NEVER sang that song once in any of his 27 sold-out stops thus far. He sang all the other songs in his album except this one.

    2) He NEVER performed his hit single — DO I MAKE YOU PROUD.

    That tells you right there what he thinks of the songs the idol producers are pushing him to perform.

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    Whoa, Jewels actually agrees with me. I am pleasantly surprised. But we have to give credit to Fan Tastic since it was really his/her observation :)

    Craig- Many of us have already mentioned several possible reasons for Hicks not quite making the million mark. I think it’s not one reason in particular; it’s a combination of several of these reasons. What more do you want? To conduct a survey asking Taylor Hicks fans whether or not they bought his CD, and if they didn’t, why not?

  • anne

    Kaonashi..Payola is illegal and of course BIG business would NEVER do anything illegal! Payola was big in the 60’s and still is. Do you really believe that BIG business does not pay off radio stations. You bet it does. Your right 19E is a powerful company that is excatly why they can do it. I’m not trying to insult Chris Daughtry in anyway, I think Chris could sell a lot of cd’s and I’m sure he has gained new fans . But come on NOT that many. Reportly one stations spins him 80 times a day . For a new artist that is a lot without some major palm greasing going on.I am a fan of a few from season 5 I think they will do well, just seems strange to me that Chris signed with 19E and jumped out of the gate with radio play that was way beyond what a new artist gets.

  • Julio

    To comment by Anne:
    Yeah, right, you are not insulting Daughtry, but the only way he could sell CD’s is with payola. I’ve heard every excuse in the book by Taylor fans as to why Daughtry has exceeded by platinum amounts Taylor CD’s, but this one takes the cake. How about plainly it’s a better CD that captured the attention of old and young alike? He’s still in the top ten of the billboard charts with no sign of letting go. give the man his due. Concentrate on Taylor and leave Daughtry alone, the man has talents – platinum talents, so be it.

  • http://www.noface4film.com/ Kaonashi

    Anne- Have you considered the fact that Daughtry’s music is more contemporary and the type that people request on Top 40 stations? Think about it. People make all these disparaging remarks about Daughtry being a “Nickelback wannabe”, but hey- we hear guys like Nickelback on the radio all the time as well, right? When’s the last time you heard music like Taylor’s on Top 40 stations, or on MTV? I don’t know where you’re from, but in LA there aren’t that many blues and jazz stations, but there’s plenty of rock, pop, and Top 40 stations.

    Taylor’s music caters to a smaller, older crowd. The type that does not tend to call in to request his music. The type that probably doesn’t own iPods and buys music online. Daughtry caters to a younger pop/rock crowd. People call to request his music to be played. People definitely go on iTunes to buy his music. And clearly, they buy his CDs as well.

    Instead of coming up with unsupported conspiracy theories, let things be. Taylor won. Be happy. Support Taylor as you always do, and please leave Daughtry alone.

  • anne

    I am NOT insulting Daughtry and I am also NOT wearing rose colored glasses. I know that his music does sell. I said I am a fan of many of the Season 5 idols. I think country sells big too but Bucky and Kellie don’t get 80 spins a day and guess what they didn’t sign with 19E either. I’m saying payola DOES exist and if you really believe it doesn’t Take off your rose colored glasses.
    Julio.. why would you assume because I take this position that I am a Taylor Hicks fan. Can’t I just be a fan of music with an opinion. I love music and fairness. But I have given MY opinion and you gave yours. I appreciate yours and hope you can respect mine. Good bye

  • Julio

    Anne, don’t get so defensive…chill out woman, your gonna get an ulcer. his article talks about Taylor and you keep trying to bring Daughtry into the fray. That is as faulty as your payola argument. Look at the CDs that are selling, you have Timberlake, Beyonce, Fergie, Ciarra, Akon, Daughtry, Gwen Stefani, Underwood. it’s a young market. and they keep selling every week. are you gonna say that every one of those was a payola??????????????????????????????

  • Melanie

    Oh my goodness!!!Another intelligent music critic(sarcasim). Taylor is doing great. What on earth are you Tay haters talking about? Rave reviews from every concert from the media and concertgoers. You will be Taylorized once you go to one of his concerts. That man is excellent, vocally and visually. The REAL Taylor is the one we are seeing now and he is on the rise…grassroots style. He knows that the industry spits out rockers/popstars.They are a “dime a dozen” and he is smart and working his way to longevity in the music world. Remember, a huge blast of initial cd sales doesn’t necessarily mean that the artist is the best…Britney spears is an excellent example of a multi-platnium recording artist and that girl can’t sing a lick. By the way, several reviews of his cd have said that he has the best produced and enjoyable cd from any idol. Maybe if more people would get off the negative Tay Hate wagon and give it a listen they would find out that his cd is excellent.

  • Cara

    You may hear crickets chirping where you are, but I couldn’t hear any for all the screaming, cheering fans and kick azz music at the Taylor Hicks concert. Don’t be too worried about Taylor. He’s just fine. This young man is doing just what he’s always dreamed of doing. CD sales are quite good. No, he hasn’t sold gazillions like the other dude. So what!! Keb Mo’s last album sold around 70,000 and the man is a musical genius. You can’t judge talent by the number of CDs sold.

    Please stop trying to shove Chris Daughtry down our throats. A lot of Taylor fans like him. Some of us don’t. Regardless, we all love Taylor and always will, no matter what Daughtry does.

  • R. Yacovelli

    Uh, it’s May 18th, 2007 and by the way Taylor Hicks album is well over a million sold as of today. That’s not a flop and neither is he. And anybody who likes/liked good old fashioned R & B should by this album. It’s nice to have a CD that reflects music that so many of us loved through the years and yet so little is now produced or available, at least that is done well. This is a solid R & B cd that has some great stuff on it. (think blue eyed soul Michael McDoanld with a little Sam & Dave and Wilson Pickett thrown into the mix) I haven’t seen Hicks in concert and I probably won’t. But let’s give credit where credit is due. Taylor Hicks is not a flop. Chris Daughtry might have already sold 2 million copies but so has Hillary Duff. I’m not saying Chris Daughtry is a talented deserving artist. I’m just saying there are musical tastes for everyone and to compare sales does not make sense in the long run excess to measure good sales vs. bad sales. Well over a million copies is “good” sales.

  • R. Yacovelli

    Sorry, to correct my last comment, it should have read:

    I’m not saying that Chris Daughtry is NOT a talented deserving artist.

    And a correction to my next to last sentence:

    I’m just saying there are musical tastes for everyone and to compare sales does not make sense in the long run EXCEPT to measure good sales vs. bad sales.

  • concettaz

    I am definitely a Soul Patroller, but facts are facts.
    Over a million units were shipped, but to this day about 670,000 have been sold.
    That’s not shabby, considering that his music is not mainstream, and he’s received little airplay.
    That number is bound to rise as he releases more singles.
    Here’s something very important to remember: Taylor is much more a PERFORMING artist vs a RECORDING artist. Anyone who has been to one of his concerts knows what I’m talking about – he’s an incredible PERFORMER.
    Comparisons are meaningless when you’re comparing apples an oranges …