The music executive spoke about the upcoming 11th season of the hit singing competition, which premieres tonight (Wednesday, January 18) in an interview with fellow judges Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler.
Likening American Idol to a Picasso, Jackson said:
“It was the first one ever, and still the best, to me, ever of any kind of show like this.”
He says the show remains very real and very honest, with little gamesmanship. He pointed out the wide range of acts who could hope to be successful through American Idol.
“If somebody is really talented, whatever the flavor of the talent is – country, rock, R&B, blues, jazz, whatever it is – we’re going to embrace that and nurture it,” he said.
The last season of American Idol probably demonstrated that better than most, despite the final two contestants being essentially country acts.
Fellow judge Jennifer Lopez also spoke about the American Idol audition process, suggesting that the “intimacy” of singing in a room alone with the three judges was “nerve-wracking” for the contestants.
But the On The Floor singer said she loves being an American Idol judge because without the show she wouldn’t have the opportunity to pass on what she has learned from her years in the music industry.
American Idol 10 was won by country singer Scotty McCreery, who is currently on tour with Brad Paisley and celebrating the success of debut album Clear As Day, which was recently certified platinum.
Six other season ten finalists have also gone on to land recording contracts: James Durbin, Pia Toscano, Stefano Langone, Haley Reinhart, Casey Abrams and runner-up Lauren Alaina.
That is an amazing achievement for the reality TV show, but judge Steven Tyler says that this season could be even better, with “a lot of frontrunners” in a field of strong talent.
American Idol returns for its eleventh season with a two-night premiere featuring audition highlights from Savannah and Pittsburgh tonight (Wednesday, January 18) and Thursday, January 19 at 8/7c on Fox.