I guess it’s safe to write about the fact that Scotty McCreery has won Season 10 of American Idol. Finally, a bet of mine made it all the way to the top. The last time I guessed the winner correctly was Carrie Underwood in Season 4. Since then, all my bets were either runner-up or never even made it to the finale. Scotty was my pick from the start mainly because I think he will sell the most records. Plus, he’s seems like a genuinely nice guy. I’m not a big fan of the genre, especially Scotty’s old-school country twang, but I think he’s the biggest star of the lot. Many others have bigger, stronger, better voices, but Scotty has that star wattage that the others just don’t.
The finale was quite impressive, with star power that would rival a Grammy line-up: Bono, Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Carrie Underwood, to name a few. There was a time that performers on the show were b-sides relics like Lulu and Peter Noone. Now, the music stars know that showing up on Idol can give their singles a much needed sales spike. Beyonce and Lady Gaga proved they are a cut above the rest, on a different level altogether. There were some odd moments, when TLC did their “Waterfalls” choreo, which seems clunky and incongruous amid all the new performers, and me getting a Jo Ramos vibe when I saw Shiela E. again after all these years, performing with Mark Anthony. It was a nice gesture for JLo to take a supporting role to her less-than-stellar husband. Very nice of her. I’m also glad they did away with all those awards for the “loser” auditionees, limiting it to one skit. Haven’t they suffered enough? And haven’t WE suffered enough sitting through weeks of that? But the highlight for me was seeing Tim McGraw sing one of my all-time favorite country songs EVER, “Live Like You Were Dying”. I swear, I get teary-eyed every time I hear that song.
I must concede that I’m nowhere nearly as excited to watch the finale as I use to be. My Idol fever peaked during Seasons 3 and 4 when Fantasia and Carrie won. After those two, I haven’t been as emotionally invested in any contestant, although I did root for Melinda Doolittle, Adam Lambert and David Archuleta. But back to this year, many entertainment writers were calling this year’s finale as the most boring ever, if not the most boring season ever. I beg to disagree. I think last year was the worst year ever, when the line-up was riddled with moody singer-songwriters who were allergic to any show of emotion. There was just somber brooding and moody sulking all season long. Plus, I’m not a fan of seasons 5 and 6 either, which Taylor Hicks and Jordin Sparks won respectively. Maybe because it was the country year, that’s why people are a bit cold to it, but we forget that in the U.S., country is a major driving force in the music industry. Country stars sell some of the most records in the industry. So I’m happy Scotty won. Lauren has a rocking voice, but she seems too much of a kid to me, like a little girl playing dress up, made to perform for a high school variety show. Plus the big hair and the poofy skirts just don’t do it for me.
Scotty will sell lots of records because he’s the all-American boy-next-door country star. He loves country music and baseball; how much more American can one guy be? Plus he’s the only Idol winner who spent his time singing his coronation song hugging everyone, from his family to all the other finalists, instead of basking in his time of glory. And when he won the coin toss to decide who goes first, he won it, but he deferred to Lauren, who opted to go last, the better option. He’s a cowboy who would do John Wayne proud. But in the end, it’s about who sells records and who lasts in the industry. Very few become household names like Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Daughtry, Jennifer Hudson, Adam Lambert; the list isn’t long. Some shone brightly for a year or two then disappeared. Most, were simply never heard from again, post-Idol. I hope Scotty makes it, at least even only in Nashville, I really think he’s got what it takes. He should come up with good material, at least better than that awful first single of his, “I Love You This Big”. If his writers can conjure a “Jesus Take The Wheel”-type of story-song for him, Scotty just might live up to his Idol pedigree.