Kelly Brianne Clarkson, 24 April 1982, Burleson, Texas, USA. According to pop legend, Kelly Clarksons early attempts to launch her music career foundered when she was turned down by almost every US record label for sounding too black. Nevertheless, in September 2002 this former cocktail waitress had her revenge when she won the first series of American Idol, the US equivalent of the highly successful UK show Pop Idol. As the auditions whittled down the 10, 000 singers who hoped to earn fame and riches via performances on US television screens, Clarkson made herself conspicuous with an immense and powerful voice, to earn a (probably deserved) place in the shows hotly contested final. Singing two songs written especially for this decisive round, A Moment Like This and Before Your Love (both of which featured in new versions as bonus tracks on her debut, Thankful), she earned 58% of the vote to secure victory over rival...
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