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MAY
25
3 YEARS

'American Idol' Cast-Off Pia Toscano Working on 'Big, Diva' Album, Says Producer

Rodney Jerkins tells THR Toscano has recorded several songs for her forthcoming debut. The in-demand producer is also writing songs for Lauren Alaina and Scotty McCreery.

pia toscano upfront
Frank Micelotta / FOX

With season 10 coming to a close comes word that fourth finalist out Pia Toscano is already hard at work on her debut album and it promises to be diva-sized, according to producer Rodney Jerkins.

Jerkins says he was in the studio with Toscano as recently as Saturday and that she’s already recorded “a few songs.” The sound? “It’s a big, diva-sounding record,” he describes. “It’s what I think I do best – that big Whitney, Mariah, Celine vibe. We’ve having fun with that.”

He’s making plans for additional sessions while Toscano and the rest of season 10 Top 11 are out on tour this summer. “These kids have crazy schedules so what’s going to happen is while they’re on the road traveling, they’ll have to stop in certain cities and record, which might mean us traveling and meeting them to record.”

Toscano isn’t the only finalist Jerkins has been working with. With a directive from Interscope Geffen A&M chairman Jimmy Iovine, he’s been tasked with composing songs for runner-up Lauren Alaina and winner Scotty McCreery. “This was training for us producers,” Jerkins tells THR. “I wrote five country songs last week. It’s transformed not just the contestants but even the producer. Tricky [Stewart] produced that 'Mama' song for Lauren, and he said, ‘With this show, we’re not just urban pop guys anymore.’ George Strait can call me tomorrow and I’m ready to go!”

As far as when these albums might see a release date? That’s not entirely clear, it might be end of summer, or perhaps the fall, as per the Sony Music timeline of Idol albums past. “Jimmy said, ‘Start working now,’” Jerkins reveals. “One song that Scotty recorded is really close to being a go right now, but basically, I’ve been told to just keep writing.”