American Idol’s fifth season is what many fans consider as the season that discovered and produced the best crop of contestants ever on the show. The top five contestants had a lot going for each and everyone of them as they appealed to different genres and demographics. The final five featured a young and vibrant Paris Bennet who had soul music intertwined with her genes, the bald hard-rocking Chris Daughtry, the soulful crooner Elliot Yamin, the sultry Katharine McPhee and the energetic gray-headed firecracker, Taylor Hicks. Last year, everyone was saying that these five were going to have great careers. With all of them having released their debut albums, let’s check out how they’ve been doing in the sales department, shall we?
Paris Bennet released her debut album Princess P April 24 and she has proven that she definitely belongs to Season Five. The season has had seven former contestants who have entered the Billboard Charts (the top five along with Kellie Pickler and Bucky Covington) and Bennet is the latest one to do so. Her album peaked at#133 in the Bilboard 200 – Billboard’s list of the 200 current best selling albums.
Needless to say, Chris Daughtry’s untimely elimination last year was one of the most shocking events in American Idol history. That bitter moment has surely been eased by Chris Daughtry’s present success as a frontman for a band that bears his last name. Daughtry’s eponymous album was released November 2006 and since then it has been topping the charts both for albums and tracks. The album sold over 304,000 copies in its first week beating out Taylor Hicks and Katharine McPhee’s albums’ opening sales. To date, the album has sold close to 3 million units worldwide. This makes him the most successful contestant to have never made it to the finale. As of this writing, Daughtry is still at #10 – 26 weeks after its release.
Elliot Yamin’s eponymous album released March 20, 2007 debuted at #3 in the Billboard 200 chart. Two months after its release, the season’s third placer seems to be holding up well with sales that continue to hold his album at a robust #20 in the Billboard charts. This makes Yamin the second best selling Season Five contestant as of the moment and the third best over all behind eventual winner Hicks and breakout success Daughtry.
The season’s runner up Katharine McPhee started out strong with sales of over 116,000 units in the first week but follow-up sales were weak for the California native. Her album – released January 20 of this year — is nowhere to be found on the Billboard charts. Though a lot of magazines and tv shows have given her accolades for her drop dead gorgeous looks, her records haven’t been exactly flying off the racks. Maybe they wanted a different type of rack.
He will always be maligned for not being the best-selling artist from his season, but Taylor Hicks has done a decent job so far. Aside from going platinum in his self-titled album, the gray-haird Southerner has also had a string of sold out concerts under his belt. Many observers agree that Hicks’ album didn’t exactly showcase what he could do as artist and was probably the result of meddlesome producers from the American Idol franchise. Fortunately, Hicks still brings it to the stage everytime he performs in front of a live audience. At the end of the day, it is definitely a soul thing that is better conveyed through the electricity of a charged live performance