Which American Idol should be #1?
American Idol – it stole the hearts of us every night as we eagerly voted for our favorite performers to sing that perfect song that would steal the moment and maybe change our lives. The title says it all – American Idol. It’s what most of us dream about, yet few ever achieve.
Now that the Season 9 winner has been picked and the debut cd’s of Adam Lambert, Kris Allen, and Allison Iraheta have all hit the stands, the real question is – who should really be number 1?
Let’s start with Adam Lambert. He won over my heart the moment he performed the Gary Jules hit “Mad World” on the show, but has recently disappointed many others as well as myself. His “For Your Entertainment” debuted on Nov. 23, 2009 and is still showing strong ranking at #3 on the Billboard 200 list. Despite his degrading controversial antics on the American Music Awards, it actually helped propel him into the spotlight over Kris Allen and has actually upped his status of “Idol.” But do the 14 songs on his album live up to his hype?
To say the least, his album is all over the place, considering the caliber of writers that contributed to his songs. Pop/rock stars such as Pink, Rivers Cuomo, Muse, Justin Hawkins (formerly from The Darkness), Lady Gaga, and American Idol judge Kara DioGuardi offered him their services to practically hand the entire track list over for him to just drop in the vocals. After listening to all 14 songs in a row it’s like being time-warped from a peaceful dinner at the Hotel Café to a mosh pit at the Electric Daisy Carnival rave in the middle of the USC stadium. It doesn’t matter what type of music you like or listen to, the fact is this cd was thrown together like a mashup that went wrong.
This is not to discount the hit song “Whataya Want From Me,” Lambert’s new single written by Pink and now surfacing as an attempt to show a new side of him. As a big fan of Pink’s lyric writing abilities, it is no surprise that this one is turning out to be a hit, just I wished she had saved it for herself.
A couple others showing strong on the cd is the mellow song “A Loaded Smile,” written by Linda Perry who has written huge hits such as “My Love” for Celine Dion, as well as “Sleepwalker,” written by Ryan Tedder (lead singer of OneRepublic). It looks like Lambert should stick to the big wigs and perform their mellow hit songs or just quit all together. After his disaster on the dance beat of “For Your Entertainment,” our only hope is for him to come to his senses and turn to the writers who know what they’re doing.
Plus, anyone who has to use an entire page in the cd booklet to thank the entire world EXCEPT his fans is a fool. Everyone knows this is one of the unwritten rules since after all it was the fans who kept him on the show that long – a hypocrite to say the least.
Alright, now onto Kris Allen. The actual WINNER of American Idol that was so shocked himself he didn’t even know what to say on the show. This clean cut, attractive, but married singer/songwriter has more going for him than the public gives him credit for. Allen wrote 9 out of the 13 tracks on the cd, which is impressive in itself, and it lives up to the hype unlike Lamberts.
The media hasn’t caught up with Allen because he doesn’t create controversy, doesn’t dress borderline transvestite, and is the average Joe, but he is not someone to look over. His debut cd, which is self-titled, features a concentrated album that is true to his style, and features lyrics that are genuine and deep. In my opinion, anyone that can write their own music has way more talent than someone who can just sing the lyrics. Allen proves his capabilities with hits such as “The Truth,” “Red Guitar,” and the closer “I Need to Know,” a personal favorite of mine. This album shows he truly has the talent of John Mayer, Matt Nathanson, and Jason Mraz, just the world needs to start believing it. I hope that he will get the credit he deserves sooner than later after his upcoming performance on the Billboard New Year’s Eve Show.
Lastly, we move to Allison Iraheta whose cd released last without any hype or advertisement. Drawing similarities to former Idol Kelly Clarkson many thought she would be an instant hit and follow in her footsteps, but she just can’t seem to get the break she needs. Her album “Just Like You” runs 13 tracks long with Iraheta contributing to only one song. As much as I wanted to love her cd, I just can’t get into it. Many of the songs sound the same, and the only couple hits on the cd are “Scars” and “No One Else,” written by Pink. This is not to discount her vocal ability, which is way over par, especially for someone her age. But at least she shows her appreciation for her fans and closes her cd booklet saying, “And of course a special thank you to all of my fans for always being there. I love you all!” Maybe she should give some tips to Lambert.
If you ask me, Kris Allen may not have deserved to win “American Idol,” but he sure proves himself on his cd and should be number one on the charts over Lambert and Iraheta.
Now all we can do is wait for the 10th season of the hit show to start so we can move onto some new “Idols.”