SIMON COWELL has spoken out about past AMERICAN IDOL contestants TAYLOR HICKS, RUBEN STUDDARD and KATHARINE McPHEE losing their record deals, blaming the unpredictability of the music industry for their disastrous album sales.
Singer McPhee became the latest star to be dropped by her record label, RCA Records – a subsidiary of Sony BMG – in the space of three weeks on Wednesday (09Jan08), after poor sales of her latest self-titled release.
But Cowell insists artists cannot get too comfortable just because they’re signed to a big label.
He says, “It’s a reflection on the unpredictability of the record business.
Fortunately, we got it right more than we got it wrong.
“There’s no scientific way to explain what happens. It’s a reality show and what happens at the end is also reality.”
And the judge is hoping the winner of the upcoming series will release a more promising debut album than 2007 winner Jordin Sparks and runner-up Blake Lewis, who both failed to score number one hits.
He adds, “Naturally, I’m disappointed that they didn’t sell more copies or that neither artist has caught on fire. What you want (is) a Carrie (Underwood), Daughtry or Kelly Clarkson, where they’re competing with the Mariahs. It didn’t happen.
“Am I surprised? Not particularly. The public decided it’s not necessarily what they wanted, so we have to try to do better this year.”