Personally, I have had my fill of pointless comparisons of this year’s crop of singers to those who have previously competed on American Idol. I know I have stated that Seasons 5 and 7 were exceptional seasons and difficult to capture on a yearly basis, but, except for one instance (Siobhan/Adam), I have attempted to stay away from comparing the Season 9 singers to those that came before them.
What’s the point? The majority of the time, these comparisons fall flat and put extra pressure on the Season 9 singers.
The most ludicrous comparison has been the suggestion that Aaron Kelly is a replication of Season 7 Top 2 finalist, David Archuleta. Look, I think Aaron is a very musical and hard-working young musician, possessing great potential in his future performing career.
But, David Archuleta came to the Season 7 competition equipped with skills that were very advanced and extremely refined plus he knew how to select songs that captured his unique and creative performing style. I have never seen a young singer so prepared and so confident for the huge opportunity presented to him by American Idol.
Season 8 Top 2 finalist, Adam Lambert, as well, rendered performances that we have never before witnessed on this show. Like, David, he was meticulously prepared for the American Idol opportunity and knew in his heart where he was venturing as an artist. He had a vision and nothing is more powerful than an exceptional vocalist like Adam with a vision firmly in place.
Now, when Siobhan screams her passionate vocals everyone thinks it is Adam fueling her singing style, but, perhaps, this has always been what Siobhan was all about. We should leave this girl alone and let her evolve. Ditto for so many of the other singers.
The judging panel is confusing these young singers – advice is good, as long as it is consistent. I haven’t felt any consistency from the judges this year and I have to wonder why? Taken individually, they are all critiquing in a more detailed sense – which is very good, but, perhaps it is too much for a young singer to take in after a performance.
I would like to see stars emerge before our eyes and the Season 9 singers have the ability to make that happen. Who will take the ball and run with it? No more favorites – let the chips fall where they may. This is why Kelly Clarkson and Clay Aiken succeeded – there was no apparent agenda from the powers that be - at least not until the end of the season- and so they were able to grow and develop into stars in a very liberated manner.
To emphasize this fact, I will continue to stay as objective and as supportive as I can possibly be through my evaluations. I want to see all of these singers succeed week after week, even if the progression is a slow one.
We must all be patient and give all of these young people the benefit of the doubt. Remember – they know a couple of weeks ahead of time what they will be singing for each show, so, unless we can read a crystal ball, the best we can do is sit back and wait and just enjoy!