The following section will describe and evaluate the new public contest The X Factor USA, to determine the effectiveness of the show as a method of talent-discovery. I will act as an A&R representative of the premier record label, Island/Def Jam, analyzing the feasibility of the show as a viable way of doing music A&R for a company that has a specific vision and criteria for selecting artist.
The X Factor USA is a music competition show produced by SYCOtv, a joint venture between Sony Music and ex-American Idol judge Simon Cowell (). Although the new show shares many similarities with the original music competition program American Idol, The X Factor significantly differs in that during the initial audition phase of the competition, contestants must perform in front of not only the four judges but also a large audience. The added pressure from having to sing in front of a sizable crowd serves as an extra measure to assess an individual’s quality as a potential star. After the audition segment, the winners are divided into four teams – boys, girls, groups, over 30s, – competing among themselves for the top four live show spots. In the round of 16, the judges eliminate one the top four contestants on each team. The public-vote phase starts in the round of 12; the bottom two contenders with the least votes perform once more to prove that they deserve to stay on the competition before the judges determine which of the two least popular contestants will advance. The importance of public-vote further grows in the round of 9 and onwards, in which the contestant with the least votes is automatically dropped from the competition, while the second and third from the bottom must battle for survival. This process of elimination continues until the show produces a final winner who is guaranteed a $5 million record deal with one of Sony Music’s affiliates ().
For a company of high stature as Island/Def Jam, home of pop superstars such as...
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