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American Idols: Where Are They Now?

After American Idol

Ever wonder what happened to the winners of past seasons of American Idol – one of the most popular reality TV shows of all time? We’ve done the digging for you, so you can get the scoop on all the former Idols – did they all find success?


Season 1: Kelly Clarkson

Kelly Clarkson


Hot single: Since U Been Gone
Current career: We’d say Kelly definitely found success after winning the very first season of American Idol. Her albums have sold in the millions, making her the highest-selling Idol winner to date.
Personal life: Kelly’s success has meant she’s had to fight her share of bad media and gossip, including talk about her weight gain and fashion choices. But she’s still busy as ever when it comes to music – and it doesn’t look like she’s going to stop anytime soon!


Season 2: Ruben Studdard

Ruben Studdard


Hot single: Sorry 2004
Current career: Even though he was nicknamed the “Velvet Teddy Bear” by the judges on American Idol, Ruben’s career never quite took off like Kelly’s. He’s still making music, though, and was back at American idol in 2009 to perform his latest single, Together.
Personal life: After Idol Ruben married his wife, Surata, and says he’s become a vegetarian to try and keep his weight down.


Season 3: Fantasia Barrino

Fantasia Barrino


Hot single: When I See U
Current career: Fantasia, who often spoke about the tough life she lived before Idol when she was on the show, isn’t doing so shabby anymore. She’s been nominated for eight Grammy Awards and has done quite a bit of acting, too.
Personal life: From abuse, teen pregnancy and hardship Fantasia’s win on Idol opened up many opportunities for the 19-year-old. Although there have been reports of bankruptcy, those just seem to be rumors.


Season 4: Carrie Underwood

Carrie Underwood


Hot single: Before He Cheats
Current career: Carrie’s the only Idol winner so far to match (or maybe even surpass?) Kelly’s fame after the show. Her talents and beauty have landed her major record deals and tons of magazine covers.
Personal life: Carrie was rumored to be dating NFL star Tony Romo and Gossip Girls actor Chace Crawford, but her current love is Mike Fisher of the NFL’s Ottawa Senators.


Season 5: Taylor Hicks

Taylor Hicks


Hot single: Do I Make You Proud?
Current career: He’s still working in music people, and he’s even written a memoir of his own life. And, maybe this is the real sign of success, his single Do I Make You Proud was parodied by Weird Al Yankovic, who changed the lyrics to Do I Creep You Out?
Personal life: Many people talked about Taylor’s white hair while he was a contestant on American Idol. Well, he says his hair started turning white when he was just 14 years old!


Season 6: Jordin Sparks

Jordin Sparks


Hot single: Tattoo
Current career: She was singing before American Idol and she kept right on singing after. Jordin has appeared on tons of TV shows and made a lot of guest appearances, and she’s even been on tour with Alicia Keys and Jesse McCartney.
Personal life: Jordin made some comments about promise rings at the 2008 MTV Music Awards that she was targeted for, but she says she doesn’t regret her comment and only wishes she’d worded it differently.


Season 7: David Cook

David Cook


Hot single: The Time Of My Life
Current career: Considering David never intended to try out for the show he’s done pretty well for himself after winning American Idol. He’s currently traveling on The Declaration Tour.
Personal life: He dated former Idol contestant Kimberly Caldwell until December 2008. In May 2009 his brother, Adam, died from brain cancer. David released the single Permanent in honor of his brother and donated the proceeds from its iTunes sales to brain cancer research.


Season 8: Kris Allen

Kris Allen


Hot single: No Boundaries
Current career: Well, he just won American Idol, and he’s sort of been up to the usual things winners do in the weeks and months following the wrap-up of the show. He’s been on many talk shows and is rumored to be working on his debut album.
Personal life: Sorry, girls, this cutie is taken! Kris married his longtime girlfriend, Katy O’Connell, on September 26, 2008.


Stay tuned to find out what happened to the runners up …


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Fave American Idol Winner?

  • Carrie Underwood.
  • Fantasia Barrino.
  • Ruben Studdard.
  • Kelly Clarkson.

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