American Idol has given many dreamers an opportunity for superstardom. But Madonna felt the iconic reality television series would’ve done her career more harm than good.
‘American Idol’ host was disappointed that the show didn’t find the next Madonna
Even among her fellow contemporaries, Madonna stands out as one of the music industry’s most unique megastars. Her records have sold hundreds of millions of units worldwide, touching lives and inspiring generations of future artists. She was the type of artist that even American Idol’s earlier judges hoped to find.
The reality TV show was known for making superstars out of talented singers like Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood. Even artists who didn’t win American Idol, such as Jennifer Hudson and Adam Lambert, went on to achieve stellar careers. But American Idol host Randy Jackson felt they had yet to come across a talent like megastars of the past.
“Michael Jackson and Prince just slaughtered the business. Elvis slaughtered the business. I can’t remember a time when someone was that important in the history of the game of music,” Jackson once told MTV News.
According to the publication, Jackson had also thrown in names like Madonna and Jay-Z as the type of once-in-a-lifetime talent he hoped to find.
“No one has come in and changed the game, meaning that as soon as they showed up … everyone was dressing, acting and wanted to be them, full stop,” Jackson said. “I hope that we find that quintessential star.”
Madonna believed she would’ve flopped on ‘American Idol’
Although American Idol host Jackson had high praise for Madonna, Madonna didn’t reciprocate the feeling when it came to the show. Or shows similar to American Idol.
“I don’t like them,” she once told ABC Radio Networks (via New York Post).
To her, American Idol was aimed at audiences who wanted to see aspiring singers humiliated on live television for their own enjoyment.
“I think people are obsessed with other people’s failures or heartaches and I think it gives people a certain kind of a thrill to watch them [contestants on Idol] go down,” she said.
Madonna also doubted that she would’ve fared well on the reality TV series if it existed in her time. This was based on her own experiences with auditions.
“I went to a lot of auditions for musical theatre and conventional mainstream things – and I always got cut immediately. So I’m pretty sure the same thing would happen to me,” she once said according to Female First.
The Grammy-winner confided that she was proud of the road she took to become the queen of pop. Madonna worked odd jobs and had to face a lot of rejection before getting her big break. But in the end, she felt her experiences were worth it.
“I did it the hard way. I had to teach myself how to play the drums, I had to get into a band. I played in c****y little clubs for years before anybody would even pay any attention to me. I had to take my tape around to record companies and have them shut the door in my face. It took a long time. I came up the hard way,” she said.
Simon Cowell didn’t think Madonna would’ve made a good ‘American Idol’ judge
Over the years, many popular artists such as Mariah Carey and Jennifer Lopez became judges on the reality TV series. But when Simon Cowell was preparing to bow out of American Idol back in 2010, he was asked about Madonna being his potential successor. Cowell, however, doubted Madonna would’ve wanted to be a judge on the show.
“You have to give a massive, massive time commitment,” Cowell once said according to AL. “That’s always been the problem when you’re trying to find people to do these shows. You have to find people who are prepared to give up that much time.”