I had to check back in the Blog Archives to remind myself that I’ve written quite a few posts on American Idol.

Yes, I am still watching American Idol 21 years after it started (!!)


Well, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan are super entertaining, and I love hearing the stories of the contestant’s backgrounds and what brought them to the competition. One contestant is even a music therapist!

But what really keeps me hooked, is that watching the show doubles for me as research.

Research of current pop music, that is.

I need to keep my finger on the pulse of what’s new and hip on the radio, and who the popular artists are, because I work with tween and teen clients.

American Idol is awesome because the contestants often choose to perform current songs, so this introduces me to some new ones that I may not have heard.

As an added bonus, the contestants usually put their own twist on a song, so I get ideas for how I might change things up when I sing it with my clients (for example, slow it down, speed it up, or change the accompaniment style).

I love that I can be “researching” for work over a bowl of Cheetos. Doesn’t get any better than that does it?

Watching American Idol (and some of the other music reality shows out there) is just one of the strategies I share with my E-Course students who’re looking to find songs to use in their sessions with middle schoolers and high schoolers.

In Tune In To Teens I share a variety of other creative ways you can discover what songs are cool and “in” right now.

When we use music that our clients actually like and listen to, we’re more likely to engage them in the intervention and they’re more likely to accomplish their goals.

More than that, when we accept our clients’ music, what we’re communicating is that we accept them.

More on that here:

The E-Course (pre-approved for 5-15 CMTEs, depending on the package you choose) will be open for enrollment at a discounted rate very soon, so stay tuned!