Fox has confirmed that Mariah Carey will be joining “American Idol” as a judge season 12.
“I am so excited to be joining ‘Idol,’” Carey said via phone today at Fox’s session at the Television Critics Association. “I wanted to be there today and I wish I could have been there myself to tell you. I can’t wait to get started in a couple months.”
I tried (and failed) to get anything out of Randy Jackson about the rumors this morning when he came into town. (He’s her manager so naturally, he knew what was going on but kept his game face on. Kevin Reilly, president of Fox television, said Jackson was instrumental in sealing the deal with Carey.)
Carey is a major A-list player who was considered for “X Factor” last season. She effectively replaces Jennifer Lopez.
News reports in EW.com say she will be paid anywhere from $12 million to $17 million for the gig.
I have no idea if she’d make an effective judge though she is from Brooklyn and hopefully can bring a tart tongue to the stage. She did mentor on “Idol’ season seven but I don’t recall anything notable about it. She was supposed to mentor last year on “X Factor” but flight issues derailed that. She was also rumored to join “X Factor.” Surely, Simon Cowell is bitter.
Need a refesher from her visit on “Idol” season 7? I do!
Here is Mariah mentoring David Archuleta:
And Carly Smithson and Syesha Mercado:
Here she is with Brooke White and Kristy Lee Cook:
And don’t forget David Cook’s effort to change up “Always Be My Baby,” befuddling Mariah a bit at first:
This is Mariah talking about Jason Castro:
TMZ is already trying to create some controversy by noting that insiders found her to be a diva during her “Idol” visit four years ago. Shocking!
With 18 No. 1 hits, she is one of the biggest female artists of the past two decades, with a bulk of her hits coming in the 1990s, including “Vision of Love,” “Dreamlover” and “Always Be My Baby.” Her vocal range is incredible, as anyone who has heard her on the radio. (Paula Abdul and Lopez couldn’t compete on that front.) She recently had twins with her husband Nick Cannon. She is working on an album right now (with Jackson) and a single is set to be released next month.
There are still two other openings on the judges’ panel since Steven Tyler has left and Jackson’s status is up in the air.
In the Fox press release, officials seemed to be trying to top each other with effusive praise for Carey. A typical statement:
“She has a deep knowledge of music and a career insight that will make her a really amazing asset to our judges’ table and to our contestants. It’s the dream of almost everyone who auditions for IDOL to sing like Mariah and we couldn’t be happier to have her be part of the show.” – Mike Darnell, President of Alternative Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company.
According to the database whatnottosing, “Idol” contestants have sung Mariah songs 19 times over 11 seasons. Most common song sung: “Without You” four times. Highest rated song: the version of “Without You” by Kelly Clarkson, with an 82 out of 100. Worst: top 20 contestant from season five Heather Cox rated just a 14 out of 100 with “Hero.”
- In other “Idol” news, the show is going wider for talent, starting a 10-city “small town’ tour and soliciting on-line video submissions, including those by friends and family (possibly unbeknown to the contestant.) In most cities this season, attendance for ‘Idol” has been down, though Oklahoma City recently hit a season 12 high of about 10,000 singers wanting to audition.
By Rodney Ho, Radio & TV Talk