For every Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood, artists who won American Idol and became superstars and eventual moguls in their respective musical spaces, there are the cases of Kris Allen and Taylor Hicks, who more-or-less faded after a couple years of success.

The bottom-line? Success in the ultra-competitive world of music is hard. That said, you can't write the history of American Idol and its singularly sustained success without devoting a chapter to David Archuleta. The singer-songwriter arrived on the show as a teen heartthrob of sorts with an angelic voice, a warm personality, and enviable talent. Archuleta didn't win his season of the show (season seven in 2008), but you'd be forgiven if you thought he did. David Cook won that season. Quick: name me another song of his that's not "Light On" or "The Time of My Life."

Archuleta boasts over one million followers on Twitter/X, and hundreds of thousands more on various other social media platforms. He's also readying to be a part of the "Can't Cancel Pride" concert, which will be streamed live on Hulu on June 12th, 2024, and hot off the release of his music video for his new single, "Hell Together."

I got to chat with Archuleta about all of these things, as well as some other things that cross my mind whenever I hear his name. In particular, what he perceives as the secret to his sustained success more than 15 years removed from American Idol, as well as his special guest appearance on one of the most memorable episodes of the Nickelodeon show iCarly.

Photo Credit: Jordan Strauss, Getty Images
Photo Credit: Jordan Strauss, Getty Images

When asked about his secret to sustained success, Archuleta had an answer all creative people (not just artists) can take to heart and use for their own work:

I feel like it's just finding a way to connect with your audience. If you don't connect with your audience, and you don't engage with them [....] even if you're good at what you do, you lose that momentum and people move on. I think people want to find [someone who] they feel they can relate to, they can connect to it, and almost like somewhere they can belong and feel like they have an identity [....] - David Archuleta

Archuleta also got candid about his longtime friendship with iCarly star, Jennette McCurdy, who most recently published her memoir, I'm Glad My Mom Died. Archuleta said that McCurdy encouraged him to write a book, which he is in the process of writing.

Take a listen to my interview with David Archuleta, and find out more about him on his official website!

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Photos from Summer's Last Blast 2023

Summer's Last Blast 2023 took place at Q Casino's Back Waters Stage on August 25th and August 26th. Seven bands performed over the course of the two days!

Gallery Credit: Steve Pulaski

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