Photo: Citizen Times
American Idol has hosted the birth of stars such as Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Adam Lambert, and even Clay Aiken. Others weren’t fortunate.
Right now, one of those forgotten performers from the show is talking about his struggles to boost his music career after finishing his run in the competition.
Caleb Johnson, season 13 winner, has unveiled that the song the show producers handed him to perform during his victory was “a cheesy piece of crap,” and he felt overlooked by his label Interscope Records.
Johnson remains haunted by the song “As Long as You Love Me,” written by Justin Hawkins, leader of the British rock band, The Darkness.
“I knew that, by de facto, if you won, you had to sing the song was just utter crap,” Johnson said in an interview with Insider. “Like, it was just the worst song ever.”
Johnson complained to the show’s team and record company during the triumph in 2014. However, he says his lack of love for the uptempo pop/rock track has been overlooked.
“I pitched a fit about it to the management company and all this stuff,” he further said. “And they were like, look at this as kind of a graduation present or something.”
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The track also was a “nightmare” to play live on his tour with co-contestants – it was junked from the lineup.
“We did at the beginning, but they switched. They switched it about halfway because it just wasn’t working,” Johnson stated. “It was not working, and it was a nightmare.”
In addition, the musician has bold words for the team handling marketing for his album, placing “absolutely no support behind the record.”
“The label wouldn’t release the single; there was no single that came out after the record was done. There was no music video. There was nothing,” he continued.
Prior to elevating to the top spot, Johnson auditioned four times, catching the crowd’s attention with his rendition of iconic tunes from Paul McCartney, Aerosmith, The Rolling Stone, and Creedence Clearwater Revival.
During his triumph, Johnson happily revealed his plans for his upcoming album in an interview with EW.
“I really want this record to be an amazing experience,” he told EW.
“I want it to be a full deal, that front to back every song is awesome and tells a cohesive story, and it culminates me stylistically and vocally and have all these facets to it. I’m a rock singer, but I love soul, I love blues, and I love theatrical stuff too, like theatrical rock like Queen and Meat Loaf. But I want this to be deep and heavy and soulful and convicted and have a lot of depth to it and hit people in the gut when they hear it.”
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