Anybody who is an avid reader of this here blog (both of you), or knows me knows how I feel about American Idol. To me, it takes the Nascar/football/sports ethos and applies it to the arts, music, where it doesn't belong. I like a variety of different singers, and am mature enough to know that you can't compare Louis Armstrong to Harry Nilsson, both great singers, but very disparate in musical stylings, anymore than you can compare Pablo Picasso to Andy Warhol.
All that aside, I was somewhat dismayed to find out that this years winner won because of vote fraud. It seems that an Idol sponsor,AT&T, admitted providing free mobile phones and texting services to fans of Allen, a singer, guitar player and pianist, at parties organized in his home town of Jacksonville, Arkansas. And why would a corporation favor one contestant over another?
Does AT7T disapprove of Adam Lambert's lifestyle choices? In these days, are there any people out there left who are still shocked to find out there are gay people in the entertainment industry? That would be akin to being dismayed to find out the Republican Party is full of rich white men. What do they say to the two people I know who watch the show and wanted Lambert to win (one admittedly staying on the phone for two hours to cast her vote) only to find out that this election was as rigged as Florida in 2000 and Ohio in 2004?
In the end, it's just a television show, and although their commercials tell us that casting a ballot for your favorite contestant is the "single most important vote you can cast", in the end, if it's the choices they want you to make, it's really not much of a choice at all.