Artist Spotlight: Kelly Clarkson

Buenos dias/tardes . I’m going to try something different today. Rather than an artist spotlight on someone I’m a total fan of and want to see better known, I’m going with someone who’s massively famous anyway and has made some questionable work.

I think that she , along with Will Young, show that TV talent shows don’t have to produce dreck. Although as these two were the inaugaral winners of ‘American Idol’ and ‘Pop Idol’ I think Simon Cowell got that out of his system right quick.
Both of those singers coincidentally A) Write their own songs, and B) Left Simon Cowell at the earliest opportunity.
I was late to the party on her music mainly because ” A bloody pop idol contestant? Bugger that!” This was a mistake on my part. I only found her stuff after hearing My Life Would Suck Without You which got a strong “Who is this? …Really? But that can’t be right, it’s fantastic!” reaction

A co- worker had the ‘All I Ever Wanted’ álbum and I listened to it a lot. ParticularlyWhyyawannabringmedown Which I maintain is one of the best fun rock songs anyone has ever done.

I worked back one álbum to My December and that was pretty good too. She really does have a hell of a voice and , crucially, doesn’t indulge in the ‘warbly, never uses 1 note where she can use 17’ nonsense that the likes of Christina Aguilera constantly do. Just clean singing

The story behind My december is much longer than I have space for and more damning of the music industry than I’m qualified to do justice to. She was offered $10 million to remove 5 songs from it and have them replaced by songs from “professional songwriters” (The quote is from her label boss Clive Davis) Which, jesus, talk about short term. He’d rather she was completely interchangeable and got a couple of big sellers rather let her get on with what should be a long career.
*gets down off soapbox* Anyway back to the spotlight, My December only sold 1 million copies , which apparently is a bad thing.
I’ve mentioned All I ever Wanted so, moving on to Stronger which is great pop álbum, less rocky but with some solid catchy tunes.
Now, the next few releases are why it’s not cool to be a fan of Kelly Clarkson. A promotional single for Pepsi/the NFL? A christmas álbum? A tour with Maroon 5?!! I don’t think I’m being excessively hipsterish in saying these things are not on.
Yet I quite like her latest álbum Piece By Piece despite that sort of pop not usually being my cup of tea at all.

What I think I like about Kelly Clarkson is that she genuinely appears to do it for herself. If she wants to do pop she’ll do pop. If she wants to do rock , she’ll do rock. She’s certainly got the voice to do whatever she wants.
I hesitate to side with Simon Cowell but when he was asked who had had the best voice from American Idol after 6 seasons he had no hesitation in saying Clarkson.
Her next álbum is reportedly a soul álbum so it might be great. It might not be but I’ll certainly give it a try.