I'd be very curious to know if American Idol's producers could've fathomed finding a talent of this caliber and who would grow to be an artist with incredible longevity and relevance long after taking the title. To me, the greatest aspiration a show like that can have would be to produce a music artist that felt truly genuine (as opposed to manufactured) and could grow so far beyond the show that they became a legitimate staple of the music industry.
Regardless of whether it was AI's goal or not, that's what they accomplished with Carrie Underwood. I'm admittedly a glutton for pop, and can pretty much only tolerate most country if it's in that country-pop genre. That said, this girl is the real deal and possesses raw talent. Her vocal prowess is undeniable -- and as the child of a professional vocal coach, I've heard MANY - and from the whole spectrum (unbelievable - to appallingly tone deaf). She is oozing charisma (which is charmingly not reliant on her coincidentally adorable looks). And most importantly, she has her own vibe and style that come through in each performance.
Three of my faves are While We're Young & Beautiful, Jesus Take the Wheel, and Before He Cheats. Her music moves me to dance, moves me to tears, moves me to laugh out loud and moved me to actually write a music review -- which is saying something, considering I'm generally intimidated to review in this category. With all the music aficionados and snobs out there, it can be scary to throw your opinion into the ring.
Despite that, I take comfort in knowing that no one can debate me as to whether or not Carrie delivers something that resonates with me personally. I also think it's a really cool thing to spot a "greatest of their generation" artist as they arrive on the scene. That's the impression she gives me - that we'll be seeing retrospectives of her career 30 or 40 years from now.
Carrie Marie Underwood (born March 10, 1983) is an American country pop singer and songwriter. She rose to fame as the winner of the fourth season of American Idol, and has become a multi-platinum selling recording artist and a multiple Grammy Award winner. Her debut album, Some Hearts, was certified seven times platinum and is the fastest selling debut country album in Nielsen SoundScan history. Some Hearts yielded three number one hits on the Billboard Country charts in the United States and Canada: "Jesus, Take the Wheel", "Wasted", and her biggest hit to date, "Before He Cheats", and the #2 hit "Don't Forget To Remember Me". Her debut album is also the best-selling solo female debut album in country music history.
Her second album, Carnival Ride, was released on October 23, 2007. It has so far sold over 2.7 million records, and has produced four number one country hits, "So Small", "All-American Girl", "Last Name", and "Just a Dream". Underwood's Christmas single, "Do You Hear What I Hear?" peaked at number two on the Billboard Adult Contemporary charts. Her current single, released in 2009, is "I Told You So". This is her fifth single from her number one album Carnival Ride. Aside from her vocals, Underwood's success is attributed to what many fans recognize as her wholesome image. As of February 2009, Underwood has sold over 9.3 million albums in the United ...