Kelly Clarkson, is one of my favorite vocal artists. She endured several grueling weeks of competition on the popular FOX reality television show, American Idol. And she won! She has gone on to produce award winning records. I had the opportunity to see her in concert recently, at the Freedom Festival in Provo. And I must say she packs a punch with her vocal prowess!
The first season of American Idol debuted as a summer replacement show in June 2002 on the Fox network. It was co-hosted by Ryan Seacrest and Brian Dunkleman.
In the audition rounds, 121 contestants were selected from around 10,000 who attended the auditions. These were cut to 30 for the semifinal, with ten going on to the finals. One semifinalist, Delano Cagnolatti, was disqualified for lying to evade the show’s age limit. One of the early favorites to win the show, Tamyra Gray, was eliminated at the top four, the first of several such shock eliminations that were to be repeated in later seasons. Christina Christian was hospitalized before the top six result show due to chest pains and palpitations, and she was eliminated while she was in the hospital. Jim Verraros was the first openly gay contestant on the show; his sexual orientation was revealed in his online journal, however it was removed during the competition after a request from the show producers over concerns that it might be unfairly influencing votes.
The final showdown was between Justin Guarini, one of the favorites, and Kelly Clarkson. Clarkson was not initially thought of as a contender, but impressed the judges with some good performances in the final rounds, such as her performance of Aretha Franklin‘s “Natural Woman“, and Betty Hutton‘s “Stuff Like That There“, and eventually won the crown on September 4, 2002.
In what was to become a tradition, Clarkson performed the coronation song during the finale, and released the song immediately after the season ended. The single, “A Moment Like This“, went on to break a 38-year-old record held by The Beatles for the biggest leap to number one on the Billboard Hot 100. Guarini did not release any song immediately after the show and remains the only runner-up not to do so. Both Clarkson and Guarini made a musical film, From Justin to Kelly, which was released in 2003 but was widely panned. Clarkson has since become the most successful Idol contestant around the world, with worldwide album sales of more than 23 million.
Starting September 30, 2006, this season was repackaged as “American Idol Rewind” and syndicated directly to stations in the US.
It’s not surprising that her ancestor, Isaiah Rose was any different. Kelly appears on the highly anticipated 4th Season of, “Who Do You Think You Are?”, on the TLC network. The episode reveals a story about her ancestor Isaiah Rose, who fought in the Civil War as a union solider. Isaiah Rose, and his brother Thompson, served in the 63rd company.
He was involved in fighting off Confederate Soldiers, from a surprise attack from Atlanta. Isaiah was captured and imprisoned, in the Andersonville Georgia prison. The conditions that Isaiah lived in, were less than desirable in Andersonville prison. Disease ran rampant, because of insufficient food, water, and protection from the elements.
However, Isaiah was one of the lucky few, who escaped his prison life. While attempting to make his way back home, Isaiah was shot in the leg by one of his fellow Union soldiers. This wound rendered him disabled, but did not break his indomitable spirit.
Isaiah served as warden of the Ohio State Penitentiary, and later became an Ohio State Senator in 1908 at the age of 63 years. During his time as Ohio State Senator, he championed the temperance movement, but failed to see the law finalized.
I really loved what Kelly says at the end of the episode, “I Think everyone should do this[genealogy], cause it has just lit a fire in me, and I’m very excited!” I couldn’t agree with you more Kelly! I enjoyed watching your journey of discovery about your ancestors.