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Nickelbacklash: Why Is Crystal Bowersox’s First Single A Chad Kroeger Song?

Lyndsey Parker
Reality Rocks

Season 9 runner-up Crystal Bowersox is prepping her post-"American Idol" debut album, Farmer's Daughter (out December 14), and this week two tunes from the disc leaked online. One is the lovely title track, penned by Crystal, and the other is the kickoff single, "Hold On," co-written by hack-for-hire Chad Kroeger of Nickelback infamy.


Honestly, I'm a little peeved that "Hold On" is Crystal's lead single. First of all, it's the ONLY song on Farmer's Daughter for which Crystal doesn't have a songwriting credit (which kind of sucks, since Season 9 winner Lee DeWyze got to release one of his many co-writes, "Sweet Serendipity," as his first single). All throughout her "Idol" run, the judges praised Crystal as a real authentic talent, a real "indie" artist--and additionally, her ballad "Holy Toledo" was the first original tune by a contestant to be featured on the show, during her homecoming episode. (Crystal also performed "Holy Toledo" once on the Idols Live Tour--another "AI" first.) So why, when it came time for Crystal to make an out-of-the-box statement, did she not get to do it with one of her own compositions? The mind boggles.

Second, I'll just put it out there: All Chad Kroeger songs sound EXACTLY THE SAME. Don't take my word of it. Just look at this highly scientific study below:

Really, even when they're warbled by Crystal, whose voice is an undeniably more pleasant listen than Chad's, or by Kara DioGuardi (who co-wrote the song, and whose strident vocals were heard on a demo version of "Hold On" that leaked last week), Chad's songs are still way too interchangeably Nickelbackian for my tastes. I prefer the earthier "Farmer's Daughter," which Crystal has been playing live for a while now and has become a fan favorite. It sounds more like MamaSox to me, and I am hoping her other original compositions will follow suit.

So what do YOU think of Crystal's new recordings? Did BMG make the right choice by going with tried-and-true superstar songwriter Chad, or should they have let Crystal really sparkle on her first single? Post your thoughts below.

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