Since its debut nearly two decades ago, “American Idol” has become a favorite among viewers. From Kelly Clarkson’s captivating performance in the first season to Noah’s inspiring story in the latest, this singing show has given singers around the world a chance to shine.
If you’ve been a die-hard supporter of “American Idol” since its inception, you’ll no doubt remember when Kelly Clarkson won her first season. Who could have predicted that she would achieve chart success, take home multiple Grammy Awards, host her own singing competition, land a daytime television show, and pursue other surprising business ventures?
While it may be common knowledge that some of the show’s former contestants are involved in the music industry, you may be surprised to learn that others have opened restaurants, performed in Broadway plays, and even composed songs for television series.
American Idol female winners
Kelly Clarkson’s triumph as the first winner of “American Idol” remains undefeated two decades later. At age 20, she rose to fame when her debut single “A Moment Like This” broke the Beatles’ 38-year-old record for fastest rise to the top of the charts.
Of her eight studio albums, three have achieved multi-platinum status, earning the Texas native three Grammy Awards and a host of other accolades.
In 2022, Clarkson concluded her eight-year stint as a judge on “The Voice,” giving her more time to focus on her Emmy-winning daytime talk show “The Kelly Clarkson Show” and co-hosting “American Song Contest.” ” with Snoop Dogg. .
North Carolina native Fantasia Barrino released her Grammy-nominated debut album, Free Yourself, in 2004 after winning the third season of a television show.
Over the next few years, she earned twelve Grammy nominations and an award for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance in 2011. Seven studio albums followed, culminating in 2019’s Sketchbook.
Barrino also made it to Broadway, starring in The Color Purple in 2007 and After Midnight in 2013. He later spoke about his life in his memoir Fantasia: Life Is Not a Fairytale, which was adapted into a Lifetime movie in 2006.
In 2015, Barrino married businessman Kendall Taylor. Together, they welcomed her first daughter, Keziah, in May 2021. Barrino is also mother to her daughter Zion and her son Dallas from previous relationships.
Underwood achieved great success after winning the fourth season of American Idol in 2005. She then released her debut album, Some Hearts, which included the hit singles “Jesus Take the Wheel” and “Before He Cheats.”
Since then, the Tennessee native has produced six incredible studio albums, earning her seven Grammy Awards, the most for any Idol winner, and a Guinness World Record in 2010 for the most number one country songs in the United States. written by a female artist.
Underwood made her acting debut in 2013, playing Maria von Trapp on NBC’s The Sound of Music: Live.
In 2017, Underwood suffered a serious fall on the outside stairs of her home in Nashville, Tennessee, resulting in a broken wrist and requiring 40 stitches to her face.
Married to hockey player Mike Fisher since 2010, the couple shares a son, Isaiah.
At the tender age of 17, Jordin Sparks accomplished the remarkable feat of winning the “American Idol” competition in 2005, a title she still holds today.
The Arizona native’s success translated into her self-titled debut album, which was certified platinum with the help of the popular hits “Tattoo” and “No Air,” proving to be the third highest-charting single from an “Idol” champion. with second and first place were Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood respectively.
From his later albums “Battlefield” and “One Step at a Time,” Sparks dominated the charts and both songs reached the top.
Additionally, Sparks has established her presence on both the big and small screen, appearing in film and television roles and even starring in Broadway productions such as “In The Heights” and “Waitress.”
Glover has shown that sometimes it takes three tries to succeed. After winning American Idol in 2013, she released her first single “I Am Beautiful” the next day, followed by her debut album “Music Speaks”.
The single “Cried” from this album appeared on the Billboard R&B chart for 19 weeks.
She has appeared in several shows such as “GRITS: Girls Raised In The South” (2019) and the short film “Colors” (2021).
Maddie Poppe’s impressive vocal talent earned her the title of American Idol champion on May 21, 2018, beating Caleb Lee Hutchinson and Gabby Barrett in the finals.
Their winning single was “Going, Going, Gone”, written by Julia Michaels, Mitch Allen and Lindy Robbins. Aside from her success as an idol, Poppe had previously released an independent album titled Songs From the Basement in 2016 and then completed her first studio album Whirlwind with Hollywood Records in 2019.
He subsequently embarked on a tour with Ingrid Michaelson as his opening act. Poppe continues to grow her music career with releases like her 2020 Christmas EP and her 2022 single “One That Got Away.”
Just Sam (Samantha Diaz)
Just Sam, better known as Samantha Diaz, made history when she won the competition remotely and became the first Black American Idol since season 12’s Candice Glover, despite the restrictions of a global pandemic.
She triumphed over runner-up Arthur Song by repeating her audition song “Rise Up” and was rewarded with a record deal with Hollywood Records. However, Just Sam made the decision to leave the label and make music on her own terms, for which she had to pay a heavy price.
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