american idol winner Kelly Clarkson has become a tremendous coach on The voice for several seasons, mentoring a new generation of candidates. But she’s not the only former winner who would make an amazing judge on a talent show. Let’s look at a few more examples.
The ‘American Idol’ Winners Who Should Be Talent Show Judges
1. Ruben Studard
Studdard won season 2 of the show and later received a Grammy nomination for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance for his debut album. Soul. He went on to release six more studio albums and also reunited with runner-up Clay Aiken for a Broadway Christmas show. It would be nice to see Studdard back in the spotlight. He had already practiced a bit as a mentor for Season 20 contestants during Hollywood Week earlier this year.
Besides Clarkson, Season 4 champ Underwood is the most successful post-show winner, launching an incredible country music career. It would be so cool to see her bring her music industry experience to the judging table and represent her genre like Blake Shelton and Luke Bryan. She already practiced a little earlier this year, when she framed the Top 5 in season 20 american idol competitors.
3. Jordan Sparks
Sparks won Season 6 at age 17, becoming the youngest winner in the show’s history. She went on to an impressive career as a singer and actress. Her experience, combined with her sweet personality, would make her a great talent show judge. She also has some experience as a judge, as she appeared as a guest panelist on RuPaul’s Drag Race and also judged the Miss America pageant in 2017. Sparks has also appeared on Idol Season 20 as a mentor.
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4. David Cook
This singer brought a rocker side to the show in season 7 and was crowned champion. He has produced several albums and toured several times since. It would be cool to see someone from the rock genre join a judging panel to offer a fresh perspective and advise applicants in this category. Like Studdard and Sparks, Cook also recently had the opportunity to speak to contestants when he mentored during Hollywood Week.
5. Maddie Poppe
Poppe won season 16 of american idol, which was the first to air on ABC. After the show, she released an album titled Tourbillon and recently released a single called “One That Got Away”. The singer showed off a fun personality on social media. It would be interesting to see a younger, more recent winner advise contestants on how to navigate a modern talent show.
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