Idol is the real celebrity

by Jon Peter Lewis, posted Apr 4th 2007 12:18PM

Jon Peter LewisI love Tony Bennett. I wasn't really familiar with his stuff until I had a chance to see him open up for Paul McCartney in Hollywood a year-and-a-half ago. At least, I didn't think I was familiar with his stuff. But, when I heard him sing "Rags to Riches" and "I Left My Heart In San Francisco" I was thinking, "I know these songs ..."

Since then, I see him and the era he represents everywhere I go and wonder how I could not have known before. I mean, they play his stuff in shopping malls, elevators and automated phone systems a thousand times a day. It's obvious those businesses rely on the innate smile-making ability of that era to keep people happy when they'd otherwise go insane.

Instead of smiling though, my buddy summed up my thoughts by turning and saying at the end of the program, "They're kind of boring this year, huh?" Now, I'm going through a phase right now where I'm trying to put a positive spin on everything so I scratched my head and tried to think of something that I genuinely liked. It was rough, but not an exercise in futility.

Melinda was great tonight. She's always great, I suppose. I don't really believe her bewilderment of high praise, though. I don't think she realizes that it's possible to be humble and also recognize that she has a great talent. Also, I'm not as convinced she's gonna win as much as everyone else. She's great but that doesn't matter. I don't think she has a wide enough appeal. Of the three divas, I'd say that Jordin probably has the largest voting pool.

Despite the act, though, Melinda seems pretty genuine. That's more than what I'm starting to see in some of the others. At this stage of the competition, it's pretty common to see egos start to take off. It's kind of understandable but completely stupid -- especially on Idol.

It's easy to think you're a star with fame and fans, but the real celebrity is the Idol machine itself. The democratic formula that makes a superstar out of a seemingly ordinary person is what we all really love. It's a real-life fabrication of the Cinderella story unfolding before us every year. Fairy tales never die. Just ask Disney. They've done the same ones over and over again successfully for 50 years.

But, whatever aspirations the contestants have for "rags to riches" they'll just be TV stars this year until they sell some records.

Jon Peter Lewis was a finalist on the third season of "American Idol." His newly released debut album, "Stories From Hollywood," is available everywhere online and can also be downloaded at americanidol.com. Visit Jon's Web site for more.

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Stephanie

I have to agree with a lot of the previous comments, Idol has lost its whim with me. How Sanjaya ever made the finals are beyond me. I have been so loyal to watching this show and now I am just sickened to see week after week such talented young adults going home. Gina was without a doubt my pick of all the Idols this year and it was heartbreaking to see her go. I pray that America will not ruin this show by allowing Sanjaya to stay another week. Lets support the real talent here. My next pick would have to be Jordin. Go Jordin were voting for you in SC and good luck Gina we love your voice and pray you'll continue on, you have a lot of fans here in SC.

April 10 2007 at 11:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
JOHN

I THINK THE REASON SANJAYA IS STILL ON IS BECAUSE HE REMINDES ME OF MICHAEL JACKSON. HE'S SOFT SPOKEN , HAS THE GIRLY WALK AND JESTERS, HE APPEALS TO THE YOUNGER PEOPLE 10 TO 14 AGE GRPS, JUST LIKE JACKSON, I DONT THINK HE WILL FINISH IDOL, I LOOK FOR A WALK OUT.

April 05 2007 at 2:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jane Medford

I was very disappointed with Haley's comments yesterday. She disrespected Paula and Randy when she said, "Simon's comments means the world to me." She discounted any value that Randy and Paula may have in helping her to reach her goals. She evidently will not represent America but rather a small group that she perceives to be important and relevant in her pursuit to fame.I hope she is not in the next level because I think she has some growing to do first before she hits the big times!

April 05 2007 at 1:19 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jolie

I happen to find this year to be more entertaining than the last two seasons.. But that's cuz I think that Blake and Chris make the show... Honestly, they might not be the best vocals there, but they do know how to perform, and well that is what the show is about.. Not really about singing... Yeah you have to be able to sing, but you have to be able to perform to win.. Anyway, since Gina went home (and she was my favorite of the girls... I'm not too into 'diva') I am only watching for Blake and Chris... Once they are gone, I'm done until the finale...

Peace!

April 05 2007 at 1:16 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Stigmata

JPL pls go hang yourself so then maybe, just maybe, you'll be mentioned on the next American Idol True Hollywood Story on E!.

jeeez ur worse than sanjaya!

April 04 2007 at 11:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Kat Okon

LoL, looks like I asked the question on JPLm to early. Should have read your blog first. After tonight I wonder what side of you we get to see? I'm going to miss Gina, she got better and better every week. I really don't feel like the show is worth watching anymore.

April 04 2007 at 10:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Sedated

I was getting annoyed with Idol and the drama. It is just overhyped at this point. Last season was more entertaining but this season with people like sanjaya still being on the show, I have stopped watching it all together. It really isn't inspiring anymore, it's just plain boring. Oh well.

April 04 2007 at 5:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Lane Wright

I've said it before, but I'll repeat it now--what you see with Melinda is no act. Having actually worked onstage with her and having other friends in common I can tell you that she is totally genuine--a sweet, nice, and sincere human being.

April 04 2007 at 5:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Samantha

Sometimes it's just hard to find the positive in everything. I feel the same about this year---Boring!! Is it the people or are am I just done with watching Idol. Haven't figured that one at yet.

April 04 2007 at 3:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Marcia

I just love reading what JPL has to say - I don't always agree but it's always insightful! How refreshing that someone so young is so down to earth and I believe you really represent what the majority of America thinks. We all know the "majority" doesn't respond to blogs etc - and actually....this is my first but I just wanted to say RIGHT ON to JPL....I enjoyed you when you were on Idol.

April 04 2007 at 1:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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