Meridian Star


May 16, 2014

Giving up American Idol …

MERIDIAN — Here’s the thing … I really don’t want to give up American Idol. I mean after all of the years I’ve stood by the TV show aired on Fox – rearranged night classes, out of town trips, even tempted to skip visitations at the funeral home, because I would miss “My Idol.” Yeah.

         Oh, how I remember those early years, when I screamed for Kelly Clarkston that first year. Yes, then I was hooked. The next year I was torn between Clay Aiken and Ruben Studdard. For Season 3, Fantasia was the big winner. Carrie Underwood won (Season 4) and I really got into it. Taylor Hicks won Season 5, with Katharine McPhee, second. I admit Kellie Pickler was my favorite, but what do I know? Kellie placed 5th that year. Season 6, I chose Jordin Sparks even before the Top Ten were announced. Yippee!

         For Season 7, when David Cook took home the prize, I was disappointed that Brooke White was back in the pack -- 5th Place. Moving forward to Season 8, I really liked the chosen winner, Kris Allen. Before I could blink an eye, it seemed, Season 9 was rearing to go, however, the winner, Lee DeWyze, was a surprise to my naïve self. I was 100 percent in favor of the bluesy, guy with curly red hair, Casey Abrams, but alas, he ranked 6th. Was I losing my touch?

         Season 10, Judge Randy Jackson’s, “He’s in it to win it,” rocked my world, not to mention the term “Pitchy” and I thought I couldn’t keep my concentration going any longer, but when Scotty McCreery was declared the Big Winner, I was on top-of-the-world. With that cute Lauren Alaina named in 2nd Place, I thought these two wannabe Country Music stars were destined for great things, maybe even the marriage altar? By Season 11, (Winner, Phillip Phillips) I knew my expertise was waning – why I didn’t recognize half of the songs the contestants chose to sing. What?

         Season 12 left me standing in the starting lane, just wondering what the heck was going on. The declared winner, Candice Glover, was really good, I guess, if I had connected with any of her songs. Now this year, Season 13, I am lost-as-a-goose. I hate to admit it. Such tunes as “Creep” by Radiohead and “Titanium” by David Guetta, featuring Sia – give me a break!

        Wait a minute, wait a minute – This year I have recognized “Can’t Help Falling in Love” by Elvis and “Rolling in the Deep” by Adele. Yeah – I feel cocky and trendy at the same time about that. Oh, and there was “I Love Rock n Roll” and “Barracuda.” But still … sigh.

         Now to the Idol Judges (Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban, Harry Connick Jr) --  This year (Season 13), it is reported Jennifer is paid a whopping $17.5 million (mil), that’s right! The two guys, Urban and Connick, are paid a measly $5 mil each. Oh, and the longtime host, Ryan Seacrest, at least $15 mil, probably more, because, after all, he has grinned his way through the entire 13 seasons of the show, which first began in 2002. To be fair, this set of judges is my very favorite in Idol history. I know they will be appreciative of my support. Heh, heh …

         Not to forget Idol long timer, Randy Jackson (“The Dawg”), who was reportedly paid $15 mil in 2013. Idol gossip has revealed 2014 is Jackson’s final year. Another long time Idol personality, Simon Cowell, shut-down his Idol career few years back, with an ending salary of $36 mil (allegedly). I’m thinking that’s why on that last Idol show (2010), Simon had alligator tears in his eyes. Just saying …

         So finally, I must report I am in a dilemma – it has recently come to my attention that NBC’s, The Voice, has one of my fav Country Music stars serving as a judge, Blake Shelton, and the TV show does air on Monday nights. I do have most of my Monday evenings free.

         Giving up American Idol – maybe or maybe not? I lead an exciting life.

    Anne McKee is a writer and storyteller. See her web site:

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