Top 10 American Idol Winners: Where Are They Now?
American Idol Winners: Where Are They Now?
Season 1: Kelly Clarkson
With four albums and huge sales under her belt, Kelly is one of only twoIdolalums who have reached genuine superstar status. Her debut CD,Thankful, sold more than 2 million copies and her follow-up,Breakaway, went platinum six times. Kelly's current album,All I Ever Wanted, is on track to pull big numbers as well on the strength of hits like "My Life Would Suck Without You." All told, she's racked up 20 million in album sales worldwide. And we can't forget about those two Grammys, plus she's currently on tour.
Our Verdict:She wonIdolway back in 2002, so we have to give her props for continuing to crank out hit singles seven years later. Kelly's star-power rating: 4 (1 = faded to black, 5 = blindingly bright)
Season 2: Ruben Studdard
The Teddy Bear with a voice like velvet seemed primed to follow in the footsteps of the late, great Luther Vandross. And while Ruben got off to a promising start, selling nearly 2 million copies of his debut album,Soulful, he couldn't sustain the momentum. His sophomore disc,I Need an Angel,didn't sell nearly as well (though it did go gold), nor did his third. Ruben's current album,Love Is, seems to be continuing the downward sales trend. He was most recently on the road with the David Foster and Friends Tour.
Our Verdict:Let's be honest, how many people are talking about Ruben's music these days? The truth is, he just isn't that relevant anymore. Ruben's star-power rating: 2
Season 3: Fantasia
Who can forget her breathtaking performance of "Summertime" onAmerican Idol? With a voice like that, it's little wonder that her debut CD,Free Yourself, sold 1.8 million copies. But her self-titled second album couldn't reach platinum status. She had to settle for gold. Fantasia's been branching out, penning an autobiography, playing herself in a Lifetime movie based on her book, and starring on Broadway as Celie inThe Color Purplein 2007. She's currently working on a new album.
Our Verdict:Fantasia has suffered the same unfortunate fate as Ruben—lack of relevancy. Her new album needs to be a showstopper to get people talking again. Fantasia's star-power rating: 2
Season 4: Carrie Underwood
Carrie, the other undeniable superstar alum, has released just two albums so far and sales for both are in the stratosphere. Her debut,Some Hearts, sold 7 million copies, and her second album,Carnival Ride, sold 3 million. With numbers like that, it's a pretty safe bet that her latest CD,Play On, out this month, will go multiplatinum as well. Its first single, "Cowboy Casanova," is already a hit, selling 110,236 digital copies in one week. Carrie has won four Grammys, three CMA awards and last April was named the Academy of Country Music Entertainer of the Year. She's currently promoting her new CD.
Our Verdict:Out of all the alums, Carrie is hands down the top dog. Ten million sold with just two CDs? Those kind of numbers don't lie. Carrie's star-power rating: 5
Season 5: Taylor Hicks
The "Soul Patrol" is off duty of late, if Taylor's record sales are any indication. While his self-titled debut album managed to go platinum, his follow-up,The Distance, certainly didn't live up to its name, selling about 30,000 copies. He's currently playing Teen Angel in the national tour ofGrease.
Our Verdict:Taylor who? We don't mean to be harsh, but Taylor has pretty much dropped off everyone's radar except for truly diehard fans. Taylor's star-power rating: 0
Season 6: Jordin Sparks
The youngestIdolwinner has racked up five Top 10 singles since releasing her platinum debut, including the title track from her second CD,Battlefield. And she's increasing her exposure—and popularity—by touring with the likes of The Jonas Brothers, Alicia Keys and, most recently, Britney Spears.
Our Verdict:She's young, popular and getting lots of radio play. Her squeaky-clean image doesn't hurt, either. We think she's on the rise. Jordin's star-power rating: 3.5
Season 7: David Cook
This rocker's debut,David Cook, sold 1.25 million and has spawned such hits as "The Time of My Life" and "Light On."Idolfellow rocker Chris Daughtry may be having more success, but David's career seems to be holding steady, and he's currently on tour.
Our Verdict:Though he's a solid performer, adopting some of Daughtry's brooding sullenness might goose David's blah personality.
Video: Where are the past American Idol winners in 2018? What are they doing now? (Part 1)
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