Cultural commentator Andrew Sullivan has had a couple posts this week about why most American Idol winners come from the South (9 out of 11 thus far). That may be true (we'll get to more on that in a minute), but if you want to break that trend, you can audition right here in Los Angeles next week at Dodger Stadium. (More on that next week.)
Sullivan's first post cites Harry Enten from the Guardian. The theories he cites:
- American Idol viewers in the South are more likely to watch the show;
- You can vote as many times as you want, which others have said allows phone-eager teen girls to stuff the ballot box for their favorite;
- And Enten's own theory, that there's more untapped talent in the South.
He argues that it's easier to get a record deal on the coasts, thanks to the proximity to California and New York. In the age of the Internet, this seems a bit less likely, but there's probably at least something to this. Still, I don't find it entirely convincing since it doesn't account for Nashville, which is still a huge deal in country music, which many of Idol's winners have been practitioners of.