Just asking…

Are you a fan of “The Voice” or “American Idol”?

Of the key talent shows in prime time, do you regularly watch “The Voice” or “American Idol”?

In the early seasons of “Idol,” I watched weekly. Back in the day, that was the TV show to tune in to, because of Jasmine Trias, who was Hawaii’s key “Idol” competitor to make the Top 10 in 2004, and I was a working reporter at the time so had to monitor her week-to-week performance and status.

“Idol” set the highwater mark for vocal contests. A handful of winners or even finalists have made it in some aspect of show biz. Kelly Clarkson, the first winner in, 2002, has built on her fame via important brand-creating hit songs, and parlayed radio and YouTube hits into a daily talk/sing show. Her latest coup is inheriting retired Ellen DeGeneres’ daytime slot and whoa, she’s judging “The Voice.”   Can’t get better than that.

Carrie Underwood, season four victor, in2005, is the most successful former “Idol.” Her hits made her a country music hottie, and her reign as the NFL’s Sunday Night football them singer hasn’t hurt, either.

However, the biggest show biz “name” originating in “Idol,” was not a winner but a Top 10 finalist in 2004, the year Fantasia won and Trias was second. Jennifer Hudson has emerged as the most visible and singer and actress, sought-after celeb because she had the voice and since has been groomed as a bona fide Hollywood figure. She’s also an EGOT – Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony winner, conquering all prizes in the show biz orbit. Well, she also is a GG – Golden Globe winner.

Cassadee Pope, who won in 2012, in the third season, is the most successful winner from “The Voice.”  But clearly, for all its fanfare, “The Voice” winners have not prevailed as well. Frankly, the rotating judges – including the likes of Blake Shelton, John Legend, Clarkson, Adam Levine, Christina Aguilera, Gwen Sefani, and Pharrel Williams — are better known than the talent they pick. FYI, Shelton has been the only judge for all 14 seasons. Javier  Colon was announced as the winner of the inaugural season, marking Levine’s first win as a coach.


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