How 'Idol's' Music Got Better
Revered record legend Jimmy Iovine has received stellar results after bringing his army of superproducers to "American Idol" this season.
When Interscope Geffen A&M chairman Jimmy Iovine signed on as American Idol's Season 10 in-house mentor and the executive tasked with developing the contestants' postshow careers, he anticipated a new routine: having to sit in a makeup chair, learning to talk in sound bites, maybe even signing autographs on the street. What he didn't bargain for? "The time commitment," he says. "It's brutal. It surprised the hell out of me. It's a lot of hours that I don't have." Blame ambition. To ensure that "every kid has every ounce of a shot at winning this thing," Iovine -- a respected record man who's worked on such seminal albums as Bruce Springsteen's Born to Run and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers' Damn the Torpedoes -- enlisted the help of 14 of today's leading hitmakers to produce music for the contestants (performance tracks and iTunes recordings) and asked artists on his roster including Lady Gaga, will.i.am and Sheryl Crow to come in for one-on-one sessions. "The purpose was to help the contestants grow and get better," he says. "I want stars to come out of this thing -- people that are going to last."
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