American Idol: The Popularity Contest (Duh)

Lee DeWyze and Crystal Bowersox perform together on American Idol Season 9

Before last night’s American Idol finale, I said I would be glad with whomever won (between Crystal Bowersox and Lee DeWyze). Thinking back, that was a pretty bold statement, as—throughout the competition (or at least the top 24)—I found myself gravitating toward the likes of Lilly Scott, Siobhan Magnus and Crystal Bowersox. Now those three have really great, unique voices (though Siobhan’s high-pitch screach became overused after the judges told her to use it basically every song), and parted from the standard pop vocals that we’ve heard before. I feel as though the male contenders typically encompass the same 3 vocal types: the R&B style Big Mike embodied, dramatic broadway singing (Aaron Kelly) or the raspy, not-technically-great-but-everyone-loves-it voice, as implemented by Casey James and Lee.

Sure Lee is cute and lovable and a take-him-home-to-your-mom kind of dude, but Crystal’s unique, powerful intonation trumps his tired, man-raspy, Nickelback-esque vocal style. Maybe there are a ton of ‘tweens who prefer to vote (hundreds of times) for the cute guy and not the more talented singer (see: Aaron Kelly’s unwarranted duration as a contestant). Who knew?


Categories: Music, TV


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