All good things must come to an end. Such is the case for one of the most popular television shows of the past two decades. Thursday night America’s Host Ryan Seacrest will utter that famous phrase one last time, “THIS ... IS AMERICAN IDOL,” as the pop culture show crowns its 15th and final champion.
Season one back in 2002, while he was still doing afternoons at Star 98.7 FM in Los Angeles, we used to tune in just to make fun of Ryan and the crazy shirts he would wear. It wasn’t long before we realized, wow, some of these kids can really sing. Don’t want to pat myself on the back or anything, but there were still 30 contestants vying for the crown when I said to my radio and record friends watching with me, “This Kelly Clarkson girl is gonna win.” On the last night when she stood on the stage and sang the wonderful Diane Warren penned finale song, “A Moment Like This,” it was clear, that song was written for her and with that, the first American Idol champion was crowned.
During the course of that first season, I remember sitting in the seats of the Verizon Amphitheater with Ryan, waiting for Sheryl Crow to finish her sound check so he could interview her. I jokingly asked him, “So Ryan, what’s new?” He knew I was being a smart as he put his head on my shoulder, let out a deep sigh and said, “Scott, I don’t know what I’ve gotten myself into here ... I think this American Idol thing is really going to take off.” Boy was he right and take off it did, changing American music, pop culture and creating star after star.
We’ve all watched at one time or another as these fine young talents emerged. Many of us have had the pleasure/honor of working with many of over the years. So as we prepare to settle in tomorrow night to watch one last time, we here at WISM thought it would be fun to take a look back at some of the wonderful memories that have been, American Idol.
Kelly Clarkson's winning performance of "A Moment Like This"