Tuesday, May 15, 2007
7 News Features: Idol Backup Singers
Country or rock, soul or standards, they sing it all and have fun doing it. Tonight we're bringing the backup singers up front.
WSVN -- Ryan Seacrest: "Phil leaves us tonight on American Idol."
Idol contestants come and go.
Ryan Seacrest: "America voted. Antonella, the journey ends for you tonight."
But these girls are back week after week.
Sy: "We have our own show going on back there, between the drummer, the percussionist and Rickey [Minor] -- who is our MD [Musical Director] -- and then us. It's just a lot of fun."
You've probably seen them and you've definitely heard them.
Meet Charlotte, Sy and Kenya -- the Idol backup singers.
Charlotte: "The most fun for me on the show is the music."
They bring it each week, and this season they're getting extra attention thanks to two contestants.
Charlotte: "Before it's sort of like, 'Oh, those three girls are back there.' And now it's like, 'Hey, we have background singers here -- hey.'"
If Melinda and booted contestant Brandon Rogers look "at home" it's because they sang backup before Idol brought them center stage.
Simon Cowell: "Do you hate every person you back?"
Melinda DoLittle: "For me it's fun, background is my comfort zone."
For Melinda, being backup has its perks.
Melinda DoLittle: "And I have had a blast being able to sing with different artists, traveling, even in the studios. Just a little bit of everything."
And these ladies are singing the same tune.
Charlotte: "The fact that I love a lot of different kinds of music, and we get to sing a lot of different kinds of music."
But, besides their great look and big sound, their main jobs are to gel with each singer.
Sy: "And, you know, some contestants may come over and ask for specific things that they want, a specific kind of support. So, we like to call ourselves supporting vocalists."
And keep the ball rolling when someone forgets lyrics.
The trio joined the show three years ago and says the contestants are getting smarter.
Charlotte: "Definitely more savvy. They've had the advantage of watching five seasons before getting here, six seasons before getting here, and they've picked up a lot of tricks."
But if you think these girls plan to give up their gig and go for idol gold -- think again.
Sy: "And it's not a thing of an anti-show thing. It's just that I'm an artist first and not, you know, on the path of quick fame first."
But the real question is:
Louis Aguirre: "So can you guys sing backup for anybody?"
"Yes. We do."
Louis Aguirre: "Make anybody sound good?"
"We'd make you sound good."