Over the course of the past several days, we have talked quite a bit about some of the heavily-rumored names to appear as judges on “American Idol” this coming season. Now, we have to turn this completely on its head with a new question — who do we actually want to see on the panel?
Before we get into some of our choices, we thought it best first to explain first the criteria. First, reports are that the show is looking to shed a bit of its extremely high budget, and one of the ways in which they can do that is by hiring judges who are popular, but not necessarily valued at $15-17 million. Some of these salaries have gotten out of hand, especially since they are getting paid more for their work often than many scripted TV stars who work far longer hours.
From here, the next priority for us in considering these choices is how popular these artists already are to both “American Idol” the show, and to the viewers at home who watch it regularly. With that in mind, let’s get to it!
1. Jimmy Iovine – On the surface, he’s perfect — he already knows the show, runs one of the biggest record companies out there, and frankly knows talent better than anyone. He would command a salary, but would be worth it as someone who could genuinely help the contestants out throughout the show and after the time on the show is done.
Jimmy had the best critiques of all of the contestants during season 11, but this isn’t really a good thing when he is not a judge. Would he play as well on live TV? It would be hard, since he wouldn’t have the option of going back and re-recording any mistakes.
2. Adam Lambert – If you want someone who can sympathize with the contestants, why not bring someone who knows a thing or two about being on the show? Adam went through this road back in season 8, and would have invaluable feedback when it comes to the performance shows. He’s also open, incredibly honest, and has already seen that he would be interested in the gig.
When it comes to money, Adam would likely all within the show’s price range — and also leave some cash open or a personality like the ones listed below.
3. Miley Cyrus – Some people may preer Mariah Carey for this role, but a part of us would rather see the former “Hannah Montana” star give judging a try. Why? At this stage in the show’s life, it’s what “American Idol” needs — a young, outspoken personality who will bring back the 15-24 crowd. Some of the older names being bounced around simply cannot do that.
We have a feeling that Miley would cost the show producers some pretty big cash, but not Jennifer Lopez money by any means. Both she and Adam would have a great platform for their careers on this show, which is why these three names listed here are our dream team.
4. Mariah Carey – Any time that there is a judging vacancy on any show, Mariah’s name comes up. Reports already are that producers are in talks with her, and from some levels it makes sense — she’s obviously experienced, and her demeanor typically leads to some funny, sharp one-liners. Would she actually be within the show’s price range? That’s what we are unsure about.
5. Pink – Pink has been the underdog of the music industry since the beginning. She’s never been one of the biggest names, but she’s always been consistent — pushing out great song after great song until she quietly became an industry icon. Now that she’s a new mom, this would be the perfect gig for her to stay close to home minus for the auditions and Vegas week, while at the same time continuing to work in an environment that would show of her personality and promote her music.
6. Michael Buble / Josh Groban – Both of them have done some work on various TV shows (including Buble, who is serving as a adviser to Blake Shelton on “The Voice” this coming season), and there’s clearly some talent here for each of them beyond the music. If you were to pair one of these guys up with a Miley Cyrus, for example, you would have a panel that would continue to get the young audience while also bringing in older viewers, and you would do it without breaking the bank. In our mind, this is a win/win.
7. will.i.am – If you could pry him from “The Voice” UK and bring him here, more power to you. He did a great job overseas in giving honest criticism, and he may bring contestants to the show who are more hip-hop oriented, which is something that “American Idol” desperately needs.
Who do you think should be the next “American Idol” judging team? Be sure to vote on your favorite choice below, and check out some more of the latest speculation over at this link.