January 29, 2006 07:56 PM by Joe Blackmon
Paris Bennett wowed not only the judges during her American Idol 5 audition, but also several entertainment writers. Entertainment Weekly raves about Paris and says she “threatens to end this competition before it even gets underway.” The New York Post calls Paris Bennett a “probable winner” and says her audition “might have been the most successful in the show’s history.” People Magazine calls Paris an “early favorite.”
Paris Bennett is only 17 years old and is from Fayetteville, Georgia. Paris is the granddaughter of Ann Nesby, who was the lead singer for Sounds of Blackness, a group that won three Grammy Awards. Paris sang “Cowboy Take Me Away” by the Dixie Chicks and “Take Five” by Billie Holiday for her American Idol 5 audition. Paula Abdul called Paris “phenomenal,” while Simon Cowell called her “unbelievable.” Paris advanced to Hollywood by a unanimous yes vote from the judges. After her audition, Paris was so overcome with emotion that she broke down in tears of happiness when telling her grandmother the news.
There are two things that could negatively impact Paris Bennett’s chances. By setting the bar high during the auditions, viewers will be expecting something spectacular every time that Paris takes the stage. Because so many news organizations are calling Paris the early favorite, viewers will have high expectations and will likely hold her to a higher standard. When people expect the world, one slip-up or bad performance can be enough to knock even a great singer out of the competition.
Another thing that could hurt Paris Bennett is that many viewers are likely to question if she really needs American Idol. She is a very talented and attractive young girl with a Grammy winning grandmother, who likely has numerous connections in the music industry. Paris could probably get a record deal without American Idol. In fact, she could probably negotiate a more lucrative deal for herself by not limiting herself to being bound to the American Idol contract. However, the perception of how easy it is to make it in the music industry and the reality are often two very different things. What better way to launch the career of a new artist than by appearing on a TV show with 35 million viewers?