EDITOR’S “EDITOR’S NOTE”: Ever the johnny-on-the-spot, super-Web-surfer news guy that he is, my coworker Chad instant-messaged me a short while ago about the latest American Idol Season 7 “controversy.” And, I’m sorry to say, there just might be something rotten in David Cook’s kitchen.
Chad says: Check this out: http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,351917,00.html
Laura Mac says: Uh oh.
Laura Mac says: Well ... I don't know what to think. Is this much ado about nothing?
Laura Mac says: A lot of American Idol contestants have had or have indie CDs that are out and available for public consumption while they’re on the show.
Chad says: I wonder if it is on iTunes.
Laura Mac says: I didn't know that David Cook was a friend of Daughtry's. Not too shabby and good to know.
Chad says: Me either.
Laura Mac says: Yeah, that would be interesting about Itunes, it if was.
Laura Mac says: I know don't know ... I mean, I know authors can get their books distributed through Amazon with the smallest of publishers. Not sure about self-publishing.
Laura Mac says: So, is there a diff when it comes to music?
Chad says: Not sure on that.
Chad says: I predict a lawsuit in the future when Cook ends up winning and sort of wishes he hadn't.
Laura Mac says: Well, I wonder what the AI rules are ...
Laura Mac says: Apparently, you can have released a disc since almost every contestant has done so (whether through a label or not).
Laura Mac says: So what does it matter where it's sold - whether out of the trunk of your car, on your Web site or through a major retailer (if you can be so lucky)?
Laura Mac says: I would assume that the AI rules are pretty clear on these things and that the powers-that-be would have checked out each contestant to make sure they lined up w/the rules.
Chad says: My guess is they say an independent artist is really a "semi-pro" just trying to get their big break and go pro with a label contract.
Chad says: My mom has worked with an artist in the past who was trying to break into the business. She auditioned and went to Hollywood. The rule they had to work around was simply that a contestant could not be under contract to any label or manager, etc. I'm guessing the rules regard current contracts, but not former contracts no longer in force. At the end of the day, they are worried about legal hassles, not keeping the contest pure.
Laura Mac says: I see. Yeah, I'd think it would be pretty hard to find someone (who makes it to the top 12 of AI) who has had NO kind of business deal w/anything or anyone as it relates to a recording or a career in the music biz. Especially if said individual is pretty talented.
Laura Mac says: And I don't agree with this line from the FOX article:
Laura Mac says: "That's a first: an album out from an ‘Idol’ contestant before the contest has concluded."
Laura Mac says: Is the writer saying this in conjunction with "proper downloading services"?
Laura Mac says: And what's a "proper downloading service" anyway?
Laura Mac says: Only Amazon?
Laura Mac says: I feel like the writer is blowing this out of proportion just to make a story more sizzling.
Chad says: One possibility is that the author doesn't know what he’s talking about. The other is that he's referring to albums hitting the charts while the show is in process. I'd guess proper download means paid/legal entities like iTunes/Amazon versus illegal file sharing.
Laura Mac says: So, the real issue is where/how the music is being sold and consumed by the public.
Chad says: I also think it is blowing smoke where there isn't necessarily fire for the same kind of a story.
Laura Mac says: Let’s see … so if David Archuleta is selling copies of his '06 indie disc on his Web site, then that's okay ... but if Cook is selling at Amazon, then it's not.
Chad says: I'm not sure what the rules say on the issue, but it is unique. I don't see the problem, but topping the charts on a major download site is a different thing from selling 40 CDs a year from your personal site. Again, I don't see the problem, but it is a first and I think says a lot about his popularity.
Chad says: David Cook is so big without the show even ending, that he's outselling Mariah Carey on Amazon downloads. That's a big deal.
Laura Mac says: Yes, yes it is.
Laura Mac says: Okay, I agree with that factoid. That is definitely newsworthy.
Chad says: Final word on the subject - I was listening to his performances again this weekend that I've downloaded. He's just the bomb. He's so good.
Laura Mac says: He is. I love him. I want to marry him.
Chad says: Me, too.
Laura Mac says: Okay, I know you’re JUST KIDDING with that. But what would your wife say? Well, she might want to marry David too, at this point.
Chad says: LOL
Laura Mac says: Okay, more on this Wednesday.
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