In the beginning of its initial run, American Idol had a pretty good track record when it came to finding talent who would succeed in show business, with alumni including Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Chris Daughtry, and Jennifer Hudson. But as the show neared the end of its run on Fox, it gave us an endless string of mostly forgettable performers. In fact, after the show’s eighth season, “Idol” finalists only placed one song — Phillip Phillips’Gone Gone Gone — in the top 40 of Billboard’s Hot 100. With the show given new life at ABC, judges Katy Perry and Lionel Richie are determined to break that streak of mediocrity. If they don’t produce a superstar this time, they told us, they’ve wasted their time. (Click on the media bar below to hear Katy Perry & Lionel Richie)
American Idol airs live across all time zones on Sunday night, starting at 8 ET/5 PT.
Between the two of them, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie have had 14 No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100, so they know what it takes to make it to the top. But both of them had very different experiences. Richie’s career got started in the pre-MTV era, when it was incredibly difficult for new artists to get exposure. Perry, of course, came to fame just as social media was starting to become a cultural force. Because of that, now anyone can try to get exposure, but with so many competing voices out there, it’s hard to stand out. And that’s why they say American Idol is still one of the most effective ways of finding new talent. (Click on the media bar below to hear Katy Perry & Lionel Richie)
American Idol airs live on Sunday nights across all time zones, starting at 8 ET and 5 PT.
For the contestants, American Idol is a journey. But it’s also a journey for the judges — a journey back in time. When we spoke to Idol judges Katy Perry and Lionel Richie, they told us how watching these performers chase their dreams takes them back to a time in their lives when they were struggling to find success in a difficult, demanding industry. And while they’re doing their best to give a piece of themselves to the contestants, they admit they’re also getting something very valuable in return. (Click on the media bar below to hear Katy Perry & Lionel Richie)
American Idol, which also features country star Luke Bryan at the judges’ table, airs Sunday night at 8/7c on ABC
Just as each of the contestants has their own road they’ve taken that led them to appear on American Idol, so do the judges. Luke Bryan never thought he’d wind up on the Idol panel, but he talked with us and his fellow judges — Katy Perry and Lionel Richie — about how it wound up happening. (Click on the media bar below to hear Luke Bryan, Katy Perry & Lionel Richie)
For viewers of American Idol, the ABC reboot may feel like just another season, but with new faces. For those new faces, though, the experience is all new. Lionel Richie, who is on the judges’ panel alongside Katy Perry and Luke Bryan, told us that he’s been very excited to join the show, and he thinks that enthusiasm will be contagious for the show’s viewers. (Click on the media bar below to hear Lionel Richie)
American Idol airs Sunday and Monday nights at 8/7c on ABC.