I am currently in possession of a functional LAN card. My laptop is a total Frankenstein right now – I’ve replaced the screen, the keyboard, the fan, the battery and now the LAN card. Next thing that gets replaced is the entire computer. But right now I am grateful that I can actually reach the outside world with something besides my phone.
Back to blogging.
He made news with his behavior at Gaga’s birthday party (something that didn’t come to light until after I wrote that post). In the Adam bubble, it was, “oh, no! This is terrible!”. In the Idol bubble, it was, “Oh, ha! This is going to be bad for him.” In the real world, it was “a pop singer got drunk? Wow. This is unprecedented and unlike any other pop singer. But crashing Gaga’s party? Cool.” And then it was forgotten in the wake of other entertainment news that was also quickly forgotten.
But Adam still made the news. An unknown trashing Gaga’s party would have gotten one mention. And while it didn’t make us happy, it’s still true that all publicity is good publicity.
We can see why right now in how another Idol alum – a winner and a very popular one his season, who did better than his also popular runner-up – is doing with his second album. I like David Cook. A lot. I like the way he sings, I like the songs he writes, and I like him as a person. He’s smart, he’s funny and he’s a mensch. I wanted him to do well with this new project both for his sake and because I didn’t want yet another failed Idol album, after Lee and Crystal and Archie.
But David has been out of the spotlight for years now. He went on a year-long tour in February 2009, and that was that, other than a couple of appearances on Idol and showing up on the red carpet for the This Is It premier. You remember that, right? Adam showed up with Katy Perry as his date but they interviewed David, too. Oh, he appeared on the same GMA concert as Kris and Adam, and he performed on a Carrie Underwood Christmas special, all that same year. Which was still 2009.
He appeared on AI in 2010, to sing a cover for charity and they featured a song of his on that year’s Idol Gives Back, and he very obviously did NOT show up for the Simon Cowell tribute for that year’s finale. That was it for 2010. He spent that year making his album, doing his charty events and some one-off concerts. That album was pushed off, though, from spring to fall to this spring and now it’s ten days away. We heard it was finished and then he was writing new tracks and then it was finished and then there were more new tracks.
What happened was that David disappeared off the non-Idol radar. Season 8, which still looms over Idol like Mount Doom, overshadowed him and his tour. His singles, while still AC and HAC staples, peaked very high very early and then dropped,and he only had two of them – three if you count his coronation song. What happened was he never really got noticed outside the bubble and for whatever reason, chose to closet himself with his band and piano while doing this album.
And he’s paying the price for it now. Despite the huge fanbase from his Idol season (which I do believe he deserved), his album got very few pre-orders, and his single is losing spins. Idol fanbases move on to the next Idol. This is the nature of the beast. This is why that sophomore album is so important – it shows whether or not one is a viable artist for one’s label by demonstrating that one has either kept the original fanbase or expanded it. And, sadly, it looks like David has done neither.
It’s not his label’s fault. David has gotten a nice amount of publicity – talk shows, appearances, even the Idol boot song, which guaranteed at least one appearance, and got him two, plus it was on iTunes. And David has gamely been doing all of it with his charm and sense of humor, so it’s not like he’s wasting it, either.
I just heard a podcast with a woman, a tv executive, who went to the Idol finale. She’s an Idol fan, and a Cook fan, so she took notice of him. He was sitting on the opposite end of the same row as Adam. Adam had fans coming up to talk with him and get pics and whatever else during every commercial break. This we already knew from several sources. We even have a picture of Michael Orland and Adam taken by Kris Allen, who was sitting with his wife directly behind Adam and his boyfriend.
But this woman noticed David, too. And what she saw was…nothing. In a theater filled with hardcore Idol fans, the most popular winner in several years got no attention. This tells me, and the numbers for his album bear this out, that he’s lost his fanbase. It doesn’t matter where they are now – Kris, Lee, Crystal, Adam, James – they’re not with him. And they’re not with him because he was forgotten. It doesn’t matter why – the media weren’t interested, he wasn’t into the publicity game, he did nothing gossip worthy – it just matters that it happened.
As for Adam – he’s still getting paparazzi pictures after having lunch with friends, when he’s doing nothing more exciting than walking to his car (in fabulous clothes and those boots he never takes off.) He’s making news overseas because of a RUMOR that he was in an accident, and then because he had to dispel it. He has to make an effort to go under the radar, and he can only keep it up so long. His SECOND bio special is already scheduled.
When his second album comes out, the publicity will be about it, about the new music, not to remind people who he is and that he exists. Because he’s reminding people of that even now.