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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Rooting for Didi Benami

Fox's Meet The Top 12 American Idol Finalists Event - Arrivals

Until this season, I’ve never watched an episode of American Idol. But early this season, I caught an episode in which a contestant named Didi Benami told an emotional story about auditioning in memory of her best friend, Rebecca, who died in a car accident four years ago.

“Rebecca is absolutely the reason that I pursue music,” said a teary-eyed Benami. “She believed in me, you know, when I didn’t even know if I could believe in myself.”

I know the power of such belief.

More than 10 years ago, I had a friend who believed in me, even when I didn’t know if I could believe in myself. She encouraged me to pursue a writing career. And I did. In the dedication of my first book, you’ll find these words, “To Joy, for believing in my writing before I did.”

Benami sang “Hey Jude” at her audition and she displayed a raw, emotional, moving voice and she was handed a ticket to Hollywood.

Since then she has gone on to sing songs such as “The Way I Am,” “Lean on Me,” “Rhiannon,” and “Play with Fire,” and “You’re No Good.” Sometimes she’s knocked the judges out with her performance and other times they’ve been highly critical. I don’t know a lot about music, but her voice moves me, so I’m a fan.

I also don’t know much about how the show works, other than to say it sort of looks more like a popularity contest than a singing contest because contestants advance based solely on the number of people who call in or text their support for the contestant of their choice if I’m understanding the show properly.

If I have all of that right, then it seems like there are more popular contestants than Benami and that makes me think she doesn’t have much of a chance to win, but I don’t think that matters at this point.

She has advanced far enough to launch a music career I would think and I’m guessing that would make Rebecca extremely happy.


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