50 Best 'American Idol' Alumni of All Time

A new American Idol winner was crowned on Sunday night… so now what?

As we’ve seen over 22 seasons of the reality singing competition — 15 on Fox starting in 2002, and the seventh just wrapping up on ABC — there are mixed results when it comes to who is most likely to succeed after their time on the show. Winning Idol is no guarantee of a future career, and finishing in 10th place doesn’t mean someone won’t make it big.


Fantasia Barrino, La Toya London and Jennifer Hudson

Watch the Performances That Got 11 Memorable 'American Idol' Contestants Voted Off the Show

Following the end of another season, the Billboard staff wanted to take a closer look at all the top 10 finalists from the first 21 seasons to see not how well they did as contestants on the show, but how well they’ve done since. We’ve ranked the 50 Best American Idol Alumni — and we’re not just judging this by selling a lot of music or dominating our charts (though those are definitely factors). We’re looking at who has carved out the most impressive careers in the public eye, whether that’s staying in music or branching out into acting — in films and TV or on stage — or maybe hosting, taking part in more reality competitions, writing books or even pursuing politics.

The staff voted on the greatest careers to emerge from this decades-long pop-star boot camp. Who has transcended their time on Idol to become a legendary entertainer that has defined pop culture in the past quarter-century? Who has gotten off to a great start but still has to make strides to reach superstar status? (Note: We only considered top 10 finalists from each Idol season, which rules out some notable alumni like “Fingers Crossed” singer Lauren Spencer Smith or Danny Noriega, aka RuPaul’s Drag Race standout Adore Delano, who both were eliminated in the top 20, or any now-famous artists who didn’t make it past the audition or Hollywood Week rounds.)

Basically: Who has became an actual pop-culture idol beyond their time competing on Idol? Below, find Billboard‘s 50 Best American Idol Alumni of all time, ranked.

via: https://www.billboard.com/lists/best-american-idol-contestants/

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