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Kelly Clarkson Happy To Be Free Of ‘American Idol’ Record Deal

Jack Tomas

Jack Tomas

Paul Morigi—Getty Images

When Kelly Clarkson won the first season of American Idol way back in the mists of time she became a household name overnight. Everyone knew who Kelly Clarkson was. More than anyone who came after on any of the shows, (except for One Direction on The X Factor), she is probably the most recognizable name ever to come out of a talent show. Well, now she is free of the record deal she won on American Idol and she couldn’t be more ‘delighted’.

Part of the prize on Idol was a record contract. The thing was, at least in Kelly’s day, it was a seven record deal. So, now 16 years later she finally was able to get out of the deal when she released her 7th album. The record she released three months ago was her first with Atlantic records. It seems that she felt stifled by her contract with Idol. She said,


“This is my first time out of my American Idol deal, the first time I get to pick my label, the first time I get to pick everything. It was really important for me to go back to how and why I started singing. Even on Idol, all I did was sing Aretha Franklin or anything soulful. This is the record that people probably expected right off the bat from me, but I just never got to make this record. Every album I’ve made has been hurdle after hurdle of just compromising and figuring it out. What was really important for me, specifically then, was to just explain to them, ‘I get that you want what’s going to make you the most money, and you want me to just regurgitate the same s**t over and over, but I can’t do that.’ It was hard to explain that money doesn’t motivate me.”

That goes back to what others like Adam Levine have said about the prizes awarded on shows like The Voice and American Idol, that the record deals suck and don’t capitalize on the fame garnered from the shows. We’re happy for her. Kelly’s new album is indeed different and really, really good. Check it out. NOW!

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