Whitney Houston may be struggling with her career, but her sound-alike is hitting a high note. The Taiwanese singing sensation Lin Yu-Chun, who rose from obscurity to YouTube stardom thanks to the Taiwan version of "American Idol," is now a true star with a record deal from Sony.
Houston was supposed to be on a comeback tour, but instead she's being told never to come back. The artist's performance was called "a national scandal" by London's Independent, and she was booed in Australia.
The pop princess's once-soaring sounds are now "ragged and raw," according to one critic, who added that between songs she could be heard "wheezing and panting and occasionally breaking into a scary Wicked Witch of the West cackle." Ouch.
Maybe the deteriorating diva can take comfort in knowing that her protégé has found all the inspiration he needed from her recording of "I Will Always Love You." His version shot him to instant Internet fame, which led to the record deal with Sony.
While only 24, the young talent was originally compared to the unconventional-looking Susan Boyle for his bowl cut and surprisingly strong vocals. He seems to be taking fame in stride. "You don't have to be a good-looking man or woman to succeed," he said. "Just be yourself and try your best."
Yes, try your best - and have a killer voice. Maybe Whitney Houston should consider bringing him in to do some of the heavy lifting on her besieged tour.
You can watch Lin Yu-Chun's audition on "Avenue to Stardom" here.
Lin Yu-Chun - I Will Always Love You @ Yahoo! Video