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American Idol Spoiler Eye Candy Ashley Makailah Rodriguez

Updated on January 13, 2010

Can Ashley Rodriguez Emerge As an American Idol Favorite?

American Idol 9 kicks off tomorrow on Tuesday, January 11, 2010. Many fans are buzzing about leaked contestant Ashley Makailah Rodriguez. She is one of the favorites already among fans over at IdolForums.com, and many are speculating that she will be the resident "package artist" for this season of American Idol. Makailah certainly has some pieces of the package. She is a beautiful girl and looks comfortable and confident on stage in her performances. However, does she have the pipes to emerge as a legitimate American Idol favorite? The current record suggests that she will be labeled by many as an early favorite but fizzle out somewhere near the middle of the Top 12 if she makes it past the judges to the voting rounds.

Ashley is the type of eye candy that so many American Idol fans love. They will gush over her looks, and judge Kara DioGuardi will almost certainly prop her up as a "package artist." DioGuardi, like many fans, overstates the importance of looks. Music fans in general and even fans of American Idol almost never make looks the top priority. Kara also said that Megan Joy was a package artist, clearly referring to her gorgeous image instead of her singing. Eye- candy contestants with limited vocals like Megan usually fizzle out immediately in the early voting rounds before the Top 12.

But there is an occasional contestant like Megan or joke contestant like Carmen Rasmusen (from Season 2) that makes it to the middle of the Top 12 pack before getting the boot. So far, Ashley seems to be the typical average singer who is most likely to suffer a similar fate in the competition.

These eye-candy contestants have not had much success at all after Idol with the exception of Kellie Pickler. And even her second album has lagged well behind the first. In any event, Pickler had more of a personality than most eye-candy contestants and had the country-music angle to work. That has helped her more than the others.

Many fans will state that Ashley is "current." This is just another way of saying they think she is marketable. However, it really means she lacks uniqueness. Looking at an Ashley Makailah perfomance, it seems that Ashley loves recent music. This is not at all what makes someone like Ashley successful on American Idol. Female winners are generally not "current" artists. Only Jordin Sparks would have been labeled as "current" at the time she won. More of the male winners would arguably be considered "current," but female winners do not generally fit that mold. Most of today's female songs on the radio are not singer's songs for whatever reason. Being "current" is not the way to win American Idol. Having versatility across multiple genres like Fantasia or Carrie Underwood is a much better quality to have to become a legitimate American Idol favorite.

Ashley Makailah's YouTube performance of "Crazy Race/The Good Life" does show some potential versatility. Unless she suddenly gets signed to a record deal, Ashley almost certainly has a slot locked up for at least the voting rounds. She at least has the "package artist" angle going for her. This is what makes her an American Idol favorite at this very early stage in the competition. Let's now see if she actually has the skills to maneuver through the different weeks and show a more unique style that can make her a true favorite to take down an American Idol championship.

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