This Week is the premiere of the new season of American Idol!  We’re definitely excited to see Steven Tyler and J. Lo at the judge’s table… and how the new judges panel will work together… but we’re most excited to see the whole new crew of contestants, some of the BEST (and sometimes WORST) performers in the nation.

It started us thinking, though… with all the great talent that has sprung from past years of AI, who’s the absolute BEST? And there’s only one way we can think of to decide… leave it up to all of our awesome listeners to VOTE!!

Over the next few pages, we’ve got our picks for the BEST of the BEST from American Idol… and on the last page is our poll, where you can cast your vote for who the top Idol of all time should be.  So take a look through the nominees, then place your vote– we’ll announce who got the most votes, and name them  965 TIC’s All-Time Best Idol, next Wednesday right before the premiere of the new season!!

David Cook

David was the first “rocker” to win on Idol, and since his Season Seven victory has definitely lived up to his rock star status, with two amazing albums, tours that have taken him all across the world, and an incredibly devoted online fan base!

Carrie Underwood

After her win on Idol, Carrie went on to be the best-selling Idol artist to date, with over 12 million albums sold!

Kelly Clarkson

The first Idol winner is still one of the greatest, and her recent tour was awesome (especially her stop at our All-Star Christmas concert!)… a decade after her win on Idol and still going strong… it’s proof positive that Kelly is the real deal!

Scotty McCreery

The latest Idol winner hit the ground running, with his debut album coming out just months after his big win. The country singer also celebrated his victory in his hometown of Garner, NC which decalred “Scotty McCreery Day” to celebrate his Idol win!

Kris Allen

The Season Eight winner was one of the most-contested in Idol history, but both he and runner up Adam Lambert have found success releasing albums, performing live and generating huge fan bases online.

Chris Daughtry

While he didn’t score the win on Idol (he was eliminated in a shock twist vote), DAUGHTRY has gone on to be one of the biggest presences in modern rock!

Clay Aiken

Clay may have been the runner up to Ruben Studdard during Season Two, but it turned out he had quite a bit more staying power than the winner… even out-performing Ruben during the season finale!

Kellie Pickler

The country singer from Season Five has released two post-Idol albums, worked with Taylor Swift, and was named 7th best Idol alum in 2010.

Adam Lambert

The glam pop singer may have the most rabid fans of any Idol contestant– but what we know for sure is his debut album was great, and since he’s performed with iconic bands like Queen, and his second album “Trespassing” will hit this March!

David Archuleta

One of Idol‘s youngest finalists, David released three albums in the short span since his loss to David Cook, and has recently taken a hiatus from music to become a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints.

Jennifer Hudson

One of early Idol‘s biggest success stories, Jennifer went on to star in Dreamgirls in 2006– earning her an Oscar for her role– before returning to music. Since then, she has performed everywhere from the Superbowl to the Oprah Winfrey show, and even the White House for her friends Barack and Michelle Obama.

Katharine McPhee

The runner up from Season Five has released three albums since Idol, as well as acting roles in movies and coming this year Smash, the new drama on NBC!

Taylor Hicks

The winner of the very impressive fifth Season, Taylor Hicks managed to beat out Daughtry and Katharine McPhee. Since Idol he’s released new albums, toured, and even opened his own restaurant in 2011.

Jordin Sparks

The Season Six winner took home the Idol prize with a record-breaking 74 million votes during the finale! Since then she’s had a successful run on Broadway performing in “In The Heights,” and will make her film debut in this year’s Sparkle.

Lauren Alaina

The latest Idol runner up, Lauren may not have won but she has already released her great debut album “Wildflower” last October.

Comments (25)
  1. <——-incredibly devoted fan here, supporting a real artist: David Cook! He is the reason why I watched that show for the very first time , and I'm so glad I did. nice article, thanks for sharing.

    1. Yeah….. same here. I just love David Cook. The man and his voice is so sexy. His voice is so manly yet it serenade and touches our hearts.

  2. Glynda Bennett says:

    There have been SO MANY talented singers on American Idol, but, if you’re talking about *favorite* talented singers, DAVID COOK wins, HANDS DOWN (and together), in my book. xx4D

  3. ajah littrell says:

    DAVID I Love you! u have to win!

  4. bMoschetti says:

    Adam Lambert — I’ve never even looked at or listened to another Idol since Adam. Once you find the “pot of gold” why look any further?!!

  5. Cate B says:

    There have definitely been many talented American Idols but only one is, was, and always will be my favorite of all time: ADAM LAMBERT.

  6. GeralynK says:

    Adam Lambert brought new, exciting, fresh talent every single week on idol. He was the reason I became a regular viewer. He’s matured as an artist & a person spectacularly! I saw him live in Houston, New Orleans & Honolulu on the Glam Nation Your. I’ve met the most wonderful, friendly, fun & joyfully people on this journey. Adam’s Fandom had become a part of my real life, not just online. Adam Lambert is vocal perfection every single time! Can’t wait for his next album, Trespassing.

  7. Dan says:

    David Cook won this competition by 12m votes during Season 7 and it was well deserved. He was the first to use a guitar when it was something the show was allowing to change things up a bit. Now he gets lumped in with others for some reason which makes no sense. David Cook is truly a great singer, writer, song arranger and over all great human being and is the epitome of what the show is SUPPOSE to be about and stand for. He is a true American Idol, one who everyone can and should be proud of and support. The wife and I have been to numerous shows and he never disappoints. I believe he will be around for a long time and will continue to win people over one by one because he is that good.

    1. joanne says:

      Wonderful post! Couldn’t agree more!! I ❤ David Cook The show has never been the same since he won!

    2. ginaM says:

      Love your post Dan. In this culture of look at me, look at me celebrities…Dave really does stand out as being an awesome human first. Having a beautiful voice is just bonus.

  8. Victoria says:

    David Cook forever!!!! From Argentina!

  9. Debbie says:

    David Cook all the way baby!!!!!!!!

  10. Jane says:

    Another devoted fan of David Cook!!!! David Cook is a talented singer, songwriter!!!! IMO The best American Idol EVER!!!!!!!!!! PERIOD

  11. laurie says:

    Love David Cook, not only does he have an incredible voice but he is down to earth and his work with Brain Tumor charities is heartfelt. ❤

  12. great singers but im so going for David Cook!he’s a true rockstar with an incredible n sexy voice.his music touches hearts of mine n to his fans.he is a true American Idol and such an incredible n damn handsome person!im so damn proud of being a David Cook fan and no one (even my friends) can’t change that!

  13. u2philly says:

    Of course David is my fav. American Idol. He won and that was well deserved.

  14. NyCarole says:

    David Cook has raised the bar for all musicians and MEN alike! He is the whole package ! Muscian songwriter Platinum selling artist… undefeated THE SeXieSt Man of Mix 2011!

    1. I so agree with you and everything u say about him Carole.He’s the whole package,intelligent songwriter n musician!!His music touches our hearts!!

  15. Sandy says:

    David will always be my one and only favorite American Idol-he is so totally the complete package!

  16. Colleen says:

    Hands down David Cook is the BEST Ameican Idol off all time!! He is such an incredible singer and songwriter!! Keep rocking David!! =D

  17. This is a no brainer for me! David Cook all the way! Besides being blessed with a beautiful voice and amazing song writing ability the guy wears his heart on his sleeve and isn’t afraid to let his emotions show, what a rare quality not only in celebs but in men in general. He use’s his celebrity status as a platform to raise awareness for some very worthy causes. He would rather put out an album that has his heart and soul in it and not know if it will be a success or not then put out something that he doesn’t feel and have it be it success..seriously what artist does that? How refreshing! On top of that, having met the man he is so sweet and humble and is wonderful at making his fans feel special & appreciated. Guess this is my long winded way of saying that David Cook is amazing and has my support 100% and always will, love the man!

  18. rose celine areno says:

    Great, David Cook deserves to win hands down. Great person, first and foremost; brother, son, friend. Great singer, songwriter, musician, performer– following him, I know he’d love to be described in that particular order. What’s good about him is that he humbly acknowledges to not have IT all when in fact he does. He’s his own person, funny, witty, adorable. He does what he loves and loves what he does.

  19. David Cook is the whole package ! This man has a set of pipes to DIE for ! I can listen to David for hours on END….and not grow tired. His voice sends me to a place where I NEVER want to return from…….EVER !!!! He has many gifts and talents…..and he can SING, too !!!!!

  20. Peggy Smith (@Hummingbird_42) says:

    Well, I am going to add my voice to all you other David Cook fans and say he is my favorite American Idol. He turned that show upside down the year he was on it and it has never felt the same since then. Of course I watched the show before and have continued to watch the show, and some dynamite talent has come out of that show that didn’t necessarily win. I still feel that season 7 was the best season overall because of the incredible talent that came out of that year other than David Cook like Carly Smithson, David Archeletta, Brooke White, Michael Johns and Jason Castro, but even in years before and after season 7 there is a lot of great talent. I can’t list them all but I do like Carrie Underwood and Bo Bice, Kelly Clarkson, Chris Daughtry and Kellie Pickler, Kris and Adam, Lee DeWyze, Shiobhan, and Casey James, then Casey Abrams, James Durbin and Hailey from last year.

    What makes David so special for me? It is his incredible voice, his songwriting skills, the way he performs on stage, the respect he shows to others, his dedication to his charity and several others, his intelligence and his wit. He is very connected to his family and friends and does everything he can to make his fans feel he is connected to them too. I cpuld go on and on,but I think I said enough to get my point across. The point that he wears the American Idol crown very well, in all aspects of his life.

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