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Thread: Why AJ2 could easily make beaucoup bucks

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    I think I have a clue 1083's Avatar
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    Why AJ2 could easily make beaucoup bucks

    I posted this in another thread and decide it probably could make for an interesting thread of it's own-in the end it's the reasons why I think AJ could easily be saved but it's also is a slam of the current producion team

    Having finally wandered over to S Club 8 website I finally get a clue what AJs was supposed to be all about. Dang, 19E is pretty much a paint by numbers marketing machine and they obviously thought they would simply replicates S club's REAL success in the UK here and have a HUGEEEEEEEE moneymaker - that's why they had a group, not one single champion and why they keep having the incipient group perform S Club 8 songs.

    Boy did they screw up BAD BAD BAD. Obvoiously I have never seen the S Club 8 "formation" shows which apparently took place just about two years ago, but just from the (painfully bad) website I can already tell where they went wrong on AJs

    1. Five is not enuff - The SC8 was for 7 members, not five, which seems like the perfect number (they ended up with 8, but that's a different story). If you do anything like a competent job picking the original 20 you are guarenteed a decent distribution by gender, ethnicity, vocal skills, looks and demographic appeal - at this point the group would add AJ the AJ (sorry couldn't resist the bad joke), Chantel and probably Danielle - forming a fairly decent group that was still female top heavy but featured real talent. Instead, for reasons unknown, they went with five- just another bad decision by a production team that was lost from day one.

    2. It's not about the adults you dolts- The British approach clearlyyyyyyyy made it all about the kids from the first, here they NEVER did. Someone decided on the bone head strategy of highlighting the stage parents so you end up seeing almost more of mom then you do of the kid in the audition shows. This backfired completely when it appears that they had no stage parent moments to show on the Semis shows so you get these pointless interviews with parents who are too nervous and uptight to say anything interesting. One huge element of their "marketing strategy" died right there. There is almost NO interaction with the kids, Ryan says two sentences of meaningless nothing to them and then we hear what the adult judges have to say - thus airtime has been dominated by Deborah Gibson,Glady Knight and Ryan Seacrest; yeah that's gonna sell some records for sure. . They probably should have had one male and one female judge period and found someone with more demo appeal (not that Ryan has ANY) to those over 12 to be the host. Maybe say a comedian who could tell truly funny jokes and command the camera and make the viewership truly enjoy themselves - imagine if they got Margaret Cho. I'd watch just to see that!

    3. Two groups of ten is not the way to make yen - They probably should have had two groups of eight and made the two Semis selections show two hours each and had short vids of each competiter and talked with them for a minute or so BEFORE they performed so people felt like they knew these kids from the start and would invest in the show. It really could have been something of a marketing commodity because you get families sitting around the TV every week arguing who should get in- it sure worked for STAR SEARCH. Ten kids means that there was too much time taken by too short of songs and wayyyyy too much time taken up by the judges- I also think that it made it too hard to keep track of who was who and to remember how well each person sang- it's no accident that the people who sang later statistically advanced more often than those who sang earlier in the semis.

    4. Nine is not fine - the British group from what I can tell never had members younger than 11 and maybe even 12 depending on when it was chosen. When you look at the publicity still of the group that's on the top page of the website they look pretty good together- 2 years age difference at most, relatively same heights and weights,etc. They LOOK like a pop group, I can see why they are selling cd's at a pretty good clip (I think they have at least four above average selling singles to their credit). The US version allowed much younger performers I think (as someone else suggested) to get precious cute moments for the audition shows, not a bad idea at that stage but then........you get two adorable pre-teens with lots of pizzaz and ZERO vocal strength or depth in a group that is basically trying to be a carbon copy of a successful british TEEN group and they are 2/5 of the group, not 2/7, and they are the first two in forcing you to make two "vids" that TURN OFF the very demographics you are trying to sell too. You also have a group that will simply look bizarre when pictured together and nothing about seeing them pictured as a group yells out these are pop music stars , buy this single or you will miss out. Sweet, give whoever made this brilliant decision a big salary increase.

    5. Here's a hint, if you give the kids bad songs they sound bad- I am convinced whoever picked the songs (and they were OBVIOUSLY picked for the kids) has ZERO experience with kids before and has no ear at all for pairing young voices with what matches them. Let me just take Canyon as an example but you could pick almost any of the 20- they want the kid to get in because he starts the Semis with a fan base, he's obvious heart throb material and he kinda looks like what you think a white male pop star should look like. Fine, but the painful fact is the kid has almost no real singing experience and probably little time on any stage so you need to pick an EASY song that requires little vocal range, thats easily identifiable to the audience so the song itself and not his singing gets votes, one that lends itself to a pre-pubescent voice and will make him feel calm and confident when he sings .... Or you could choose a difficult signature 70's song that at least 30% of the audience hasn't ever heard before done by a truly talented but somewhat gravel voiced singer who sold the song because he knew how to put feeling and nuance (two of the most sophisticated and difficult things to ask of a teen singer) into what it is musically not the most upbeat song or exciting song made. He was INCREDIBLY nervous, never found what little voice he has and bombed badly - gee, who knew. On the female side consider Kristina Debarge, a fairly good looking and good sounding kid who lacks a ton of stage presence and needs a song that will force her to show personality. She seems to have vocal range and good pitch so you have a relatively wide range of choices - it seems like the two best ideas are a power song with a couple runs that make her get the diva votes or the yang to AJ's ying and dress her up somewhat exotically (a GOOD exotic) and have her sing latin soul - both display vocal talent and require some personality to sell, but don't demand any moving around ... Or you could choose a fairly vanilla song that I'm betting most of you don't even remember the title of, dress her in nothing that helps her demonstrate personality,put her on early and show off little of her vocal skills. Stunningly she didn't get enuff votes. The musical selections time and again betrayed the kids, putting them out of their element and did NOTHING for the audience.

    I am more convinced than ever that AJ 2 would do very well if they had anything like competent producers.
    everybody has the right to speak their mind, so don't shoot me if I speak mine- ray davies

  2. #2
    FORT Fan eatmorchiken's Avatar
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    I agree with everything!! they actually had 6 year olds try out!! that is insane. Luckily, none made it far, but if they did, it would be horrible! They should have made it 11-14 or sumthin like that. At least some of them would have already gone through puberty. An even better idea would be having american teens. ages 13-16. Then they would all have grown out of their kid stages. These producers should not copy off of anything that is British!! what were they thinking!!

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    Because five (or four) is the traditional number for pop groups in the US.

    And, I don't realize how no one understands this - the reason they give certain people songs that are out of their range is self-explanatory. They don't want people to look & not listen.

    For instance, with Jordan - who clearly doesn't have a voice to be in this business - she probably got a lot of votes with ABC. Unfortunately, ABC lends itself to an energetic singer. It's not an easy song - but you really can't sound bad singing it if you have a shell of talent. Thus, they wanted people to see Jordan bomb in two hard, voice-requiring songs to prove that she may have the look, the personality, and the energy - but she lacks the most important thing..a voice.

    I don't know where Canyon gets all this praise from, except that their attempt to take the ugliest little boy in the competition with a ridiculous haircut and grab him sympathy votes didn't work.

    Fact is, you shouldn't be "out of your element" with the songs that have been given to the children, if you're going to make it in the business. I'm sure most of the kids could've done fine with Magic - but the whole point of giving it to Jordan was so she didn't get in the top five.

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    I think I have a clue 1083's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by YeahYeah
    Because five (or four) is the traditional number for pop groups in the US.

    And, I don't realize how no one understands this - the reason they give certain people songs that are out of their range is self-explanatory. They don't want people to look & not listen.

    For instance, with Jordan - who clearly doesn't have a voice to be in this business - she probably got a lot of votes with ABC. Unfortunately, ABC lends itself to an energetic singer. It's not an easy song - but you really can't sound bad singing it if you have a shell of talent. Thus, they wanted people to see Jordan bomb in two hard, voice-requiring songs to prove that she may have the look, the personality, and the energy - but she lacks the most important thing..a voice.

    I don't know where Canyon gets all this praise from, except that their attempt to take the ugliest little boy in the competition with a ridiculous haircut and grab him sympathy votes didn't work.

    Fact is, you shouldn't be "out of your element" with the songs that have been given to the children, if you're going to make it in the business. I'm sure most of the kids could've done fine with Magic - but the whole point of giving it to Jordan was so she didn't get in the top five.

    Four is ALSO the traditional number of people in groups in the UK( or most anywhere else), but S Club 8 planned on 7 not 5 so that's not really an explanation of why they did not in the US.

    Its comical to say that they wanted talent over looks- Jordan, Canyon, both Thompson sisters and the vastly improved Katelyn are all examples where being able to sing a note was clearly not high on their list of AJ's needed elements to get screen time. Those who sounded good and looked average got to stand on the sidewalk for the Semis quite clearly.
    everybody has the right to speak their mind, so don't shoot me if I speak mine- ray davies

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    They wanted the Thompsons in the group because they probably have the best "pop-culture" marketability. I've pointed that out many times. They're not good singers either.

    But, with Jordan - SHE IS SUCH A GOOD PERFORMER it's scary. But, her voice needs serious work, and they want to point that out so that no one votes for her. They don't want an "all Thompsons band". They just wanted the two sisters for marketing.

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    Clay Aiken Fan <3 Cassandra's Avatar
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    I agree with most of what you said, a lot of that I had thought about too.

    And about the Thompsons...I think they're average singers (Tori a bit better than Taylor), but they're cute, they're comfortable on stage, they can dance...overall they have more than some of the others.
    to Taylor, Chantel, Katelyn, Danielle, and Tori. Good luck on making the group!

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    Quote Originally Posted by YeahYeah
    For instance, with Jordan - who clearly doesn't have a voice to be in this business - she probably got a lot of votes with ABC. Unfortunately, ABC lends itself to an energetic singer. It's not an easy song - but you really can't sound bad singing it if you have a shell of talent. Thus, they wanted people to see Jordan bomb in two hard, voice-requiring songs to prove that she may have the look, the personality, and the energy - but she lacks the most important thing..a voice.

    I don't know where Canyon gets all this praise from, except that their attempt to take the ugliest little boy in the competition with a ridiculous haircut and grab him sympathy votes didn't work.

    Fact is, you shouldn't be "out of your element" with the songs that have been given to the children, if you're going to make it in the business. I'm sure most of the kids could've done fine with Magic - but the whole point of giving it to Jordan was so she didn't get in the top five.
    Jordan and Canyon are/were by far not the two most talented kids in the competion. That's a fact. However, there is something these two kids have in common. Neither have had official vocal training (and forgive me if I'm wrong, many of the others have), and therefore unarguably do have talent. With both Canyon and Jordan, their persoanlities come through in their voice (something many artists with much more natural talent will spend their whole careers looking for). Both have star quality, which does not just include voice.

    The object of the show was the not to find the kids with the best voice, but to find the kids that represent the "total entertainment package." Point blank.

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    But, a lot of the entertainer thing can be manufactured.

    Like I've said all along - Jordan doesn't possess anything an ordinary, energetic eleven-year-old girl doesn't have. My younger sister says she's just like someone who'd be in her dancing class. You can find Jordans, Canyons, and Katelyns at any talent show or dance/vocal competition. Lucy Hales & Chantels are not a dime a dozen and are much more valuable.

    They even showed you what they can do on last week's performance show. Yes, Lucy's good-looking, but one comment from Ryan Seacrest - and she becomes "hot". The power of publicity is extreme these days, so you're better off finding the best talents.

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    FORT Regular Rissa's Avatar
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    I think the thompson sisters are cute and everything but i dont think they should be in the group because of their age.We have no clue how their gunna sound years from now.thats why they should have had a better age limite.Like lucy she has an amazinmg voice now but just think about all the more practice shes going to get its going to be more amazing than it already is in a couple years .So who ever created this show the way they did made a big mistake on that
    Rissa

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    FORT Fogey zippy's Avatar
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    You missed the biggest mistake of all - S Club Juniors were chosen be people in the industry, not voters. They also had a ready-made tour to join.

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