Power singer Kelly Clarkson says contestants will find Duets harder than American Idol. She ought to know given that she was the first ever Idol winner. So what's the difference between the two shows?
Singing legends John Legend, Jennifer Nettles and Robin Thicke are joining with Kelly on Duets. Each singer will ultimately choose two contestants to coach and mentor. Then each team will sing a duet in hopes of advancing forward to the next round.
Clarkson likes the format of the new show because it gives aspiring singers someone to help them along in the competition. She admits she could have used that during her days on Idol. However, she says there's a lot more work involved than her former show or even The Voice requires.
While those competing find it intimidating to sing with superstars, the mentors admit it's harder competing with the contestants than they thought it would be. Apparently, the newbies give the pros a real run for their money; making them up their A-game as well.
That seems to show that Clarkson, Legend, Nettles and Thicke are as good at mentoring as they are singing. Otherwise they wouldn't be worried about being bested by their prodigies.
Robin admits it was Duets' format that enticed him to join the show. "...I get to sing every week," he noted. "I wouldn't be comfortable just sitting there judging...But to have the opportunity to perform and sing and give my gift back, that's the joy for me," he insisted.
It was the opportunity to find new talent that appealed to John Legend, who took Lionel Ritchie's place after he dropped out recently. "I love looking at new talent and nurturing new talent and mentoring new talent...," he added.
Whether Duets can pull the numbers of Idol, The Voice or X Factor remains unknown, although Kelly Clarkson believes it can. Still, it's probably lucky the show isn't going head to head with the big boys. Their late spring, early summer television slot lets them stand on their own. Until they build a solid viewer base, that's a very good thing.
Duets premieres soon on ABC network. Check local listings for dates and times.