Note: Just had 15 grape vines, 75 strawberry plants, 2 elderberry bushes, 8 raspberry and 12 blackberry plants show up. Got to get them planted ASAP. So this is condensed version.
ETA: Thanks to Sunny for link to Josiah on Ellen Show.
About 2 years ago, millions heard “I was born by the river” and had to look to see who was singing. This was our introduction to Taylor Hicks and over the next 3 months, we saw Taylor turn American Idol upside down. He was Simon’s and Nigel’s worse nightmare – a top 12 contestant that refused to conform. Week after week, the Soul Patrol got stronger and bigger.
So TBTB seemed determined to make sure this didn’t happen again. With all the millions they make from the show, they also wanted the millions from a top selling recording artist. So we get Season 6 – the most boring season ever. AI went from probably the best group of contestants (Season 5) to the worst (Season 6). Ratings drop and no superstar emerges from this cast of “Idols”.
So how do they fix it for Season 7? They bring in a bunch of “ringers” who they believe can be packaged to sell records. Just one little problem – Josiah Leming.
Now the question is – Why was Josiah cut? Because of his performance of Stand By Me? I think not. His first 2 auditions were too strong. Was it because he dismissed the band? I doubt that too. Each contestant only got 5 minutes with the band. Josiah tried to get the band to play the song the way he heard it in his head but couldn’t get it done in 5 minutes. So I’m guessing he was given a choice of either singing with the band unrehearsed or singing acapella. I doubt if cockiness or arrogance had anything to do with it.
But Josiah was about to be the next Taylor. When I looked at the AI forum, it looked to me like the Josiah related postings outnumbered all the other contestants combines. Even after he was cut, the number of Josiah postings was impressive – even with the board ops deleting Josiah related threads.
Josiah’s fan base reminds me of Taylor’s. Read a few postings and you’ll see comments like “My granddaughters and I love Josiah”, “I’m in my 30’s and the mother of 3 and love Josiah”, “My wife and I love Josiah”, “I love his passion”, “I’ve never visited a message board before”, “I’ve never tried to look up an AI contestant on the Internet before”, etc. Remind anyone else of the Soul Patrol?
Since being cut from AI, Josiah has sold thousands of dollars of downloads of his music, two of his original compositions have received over 250,000 hits on YouTube, he is scheduled to be on Ellen tomorrow (Feb 19), and is also going to be on MTV. I think TPTB knew that Josiah had the potential to quickly attract a huge fan base, take the lead, and never relinquish it. So he’s gone, and Idol is the worse for it. In my opinion, Josiah was the most creative contestant AI has ever had.
One Last Song – Written and Performed by Josiah Leming