24 of the current Top 100 iTunes downloads is from American Idol Season 8. If we add past American Idol contestants, that is another 7 – 31 pop tracks total in the iTunes chart. David Cook, Carrie Underwood, Kellie Pickler and Jordin Sparks singles are among included.
As of May 23, 2009 Kris Allen’s single “No Boundaries” is number one on the iTunes downloads chart beating finale rival Adam Lambert’s own version of the same song currently in number 16 spot.
“No Boundaries” is an original song written by Idol judge Kara DioGuardi, along with Cathy Dennis and Mitch Allan. When the song was first heard on the American Idol finale, Simon wasn’t impressed and laughed on the lyrics of the song. Most bloggers followed suit and called it among the worst songs ever written for Idol. With a strong lead in the iTunes chart, who is laughing now?
Overall, Kris Allen’s 12 American Idol performances is in the Top 100 with 4 songs in the top 20. Adam Lambert on the other hand has only 9 songs in the chart with “Mad World” at its highest in number 6 spot. Interestingly, only one of Danny Gokey’s songs is in the charts; “You are so Beautiful” currently in number 75.
These numbers of course changes from week to week yet no matter what most people say about how American Idol’s popularity and spark is dying beats the charts in contrast. American Idol still clearly dominates the pop charts and that says a lot to a 6 year old reality television show.
“The Acoustic Rocker vs the Glam Rocker. Conway vs California, The guy next door vs the guy liner.” Kris Allen vs Adam Lambert.
This week was rather surprising for us. Kris did an excellent job on his first two songs, especially his first, to make it at least seem to be a horse race.
1 Adam Lambert – Personal Favorite- “Mad World” by Tears for Fears
By the luck of the drraw, Adam had to go first, which did give Kris an advantage. Adam started off with “Mad World” which we could imagine being a huge hit right here, right now. His falsetto was flawless, but what strikes most about Adam is how effortless it all is for him. His range is super-human, his screams from the planet Krypton and his creativity from Mozart.
2 Kris Allen – Personal Favorite- “Ain’t No Sunshine” by Bill Withers
Could Kris follow? Kris followed with an incredible rendering of “Ain’t No Sunshine”. We didn’t think we would be impressed, and we were wrong. This was an excellent and creative version of the song and Kris could do this as a hit as well. This was a performance with the piano, and we believe it is the instrument that clearly gave Kris an advantage no one else had, because he is actually quite talented as a musician as well, not just a vocalist, and it clearly adds to his appeal.
3 Adam Lambert – Producer Simon Fuller’s Choice – “A Change is Gonna Come” by Patti LaBelle and Sam Cooke
The producer picked the next song for the contestants. Adam did “A Change is Gonna Come”, and wowed us again. What was most amazing is we feel the choices for both artists were second rate. Perhaps that is just us, but we don’t think so. Still, Adam made us love it, which as we said before, it doesn’t matter what song it is for the truly talented, and Adam is miraculously talented.
4 Kris Allen – Producer Simon Fuller’s Choice – “What’s Goin’ On” by Marvin Gaye
Kris followed with“What’s Goin’ On” on his guitar. Again, it was not a great choice, but what is key here, and something always missed when the judges judge, is he didn’t choose it. Yet he was criticized for its not being the right song. Geesh, guys, get real. At any rate, Randy and Simon did a poor critique of the song and were negative on it, which was ashame, because Kris did a commendable job of keeping in the competition, but the judges ended any chance he had with their comments.
5 Adam Lambert – Original Winner’s Song – “No Boundaries” by Kara Dio Guardi
Finally, both artists sang a new song written by Kara. It was written as a canned hit song to be done by any artist, and Kara is excellent at that. The tune has melody and is very catchy. But the song is different from the others. It has not been performed before to an audience. It wasn’t a hit last week and the artists do not get a chance to see what worked before. It is new. Here is where Adam truly separated himself from anyone we have seen. He took the new song and made it a smash hit. A song we had never heard and we loved it.
6 Kris Allen – Original Winner’s Song – “No Boundaries” by Kara Dio Guardi
Kris took the song and decided to sing it sans instruments. We think he should have stayed on the piano. It is just the artist we see him as being. Kris had no idea where to go with the melody. He started off incredibly pitchy and by the time he got to the end was an octave too high for his vocal. While he did a commendable job, it was just enough for the boy scout merit badge. It wasn’t a smash.
So, there you have it. We said before that unless Adam got laryngitis or died this past week, this year was his. Adam is the best and most diverse talent we have seen on this show. When we first discovered how good he was, we captioned our article, “The Scream Is Back”. His scream is effortless and is on par with the greats of rock like Robert Plant and Roger Daltry. There is no song he cannot do and do well. His falsetto is flawless and never off key. His range is beyond anyone we have ever seen, including the women performers. We believe if there were a contest for the best American Idol, Adam would win easily. And so Kris never had a chance. But then, neither did Danny. There were bad calls along the way, but Adam is untouchable, and if the audience did not vote for him, it would be a travesty.