The two-hour-plus Season 10 finale of the Fox singing competition “American Idol”, which featured performances by JUDAS PRIEST and AEROSMITH frontman (and “Idol” judge) Steven Tyler, attracted 29.3 million viewers. According to USA Today, that’s a 21% increase over last year (24.2 million). The May 25 broadcast also was up 12% in young adults (18-to-49) compared to the Season 9 finale.
It was the first time in three years that the finale has shown year-to-year growth in viewers and the first time in five years that it has seen an increase in young adults.
Speaking to MTV News, JUDAS PRIEST frontman Rob Halford stated about his band’s performance with James Durbin — the 22-year-old rocker from Santa Cruz, California, who was eliminated from ” Idol” earlier in the month but who made a return appearance during last week’s broadcast — “Because we’ve lived so long and done so much stuff in heavy metal and we’ve seen so many crazy things and heard so many crazy things, when we heard this we went, ‘Fuck! That’s incredible, man. Let’s do it, you know? This is insane. That’s just amazing.’ So as it progressed from ‘Another Thing Coming’ ’till this point now, when we’re on the carpet and we’re about to do the show, it’s just a dream come true for PRIEST, for metal and, mostly, for James Durbin”
Durbin sang the JUDAS PRIEST classic “You Got Another Thing Coming” on the March 1 edition of “Idol”. His rendition marked the first time, according to AEROSMITH singer and “American Idol” judge Steven Tyler, where a JUDAS PRIEST single was performed on the “Idol” stage.
Asked if there was any trepidation about letting Durbin take on their 1982 hit, JUDAS PRIEST guitarist Glenn Tipton said, “None whatsoever, I mean, if you look at what James has done for heavy metal, you’ve got to say thank you, you know? It’s just bringing metal to the front, making it, metal, accessible for people. It’s a good thing.”
As for whether there will ever be a collaboration between the fourth-place finalist and the British band, Halford was optimistic, saying,”Yeah, anything’s possible.”
“We just wish him all the best,” he added. “He’s got such an extraordinary voice. He’s got such a genuine and lovable personality. He’s the real deal, James, and we wish him the best. Good for you, James!”
PRIEST and Durbin performed the band’s classic songs “Living After Midnight” and “Breaking The Law”.
JUDAS PRIEST‘s appearance on “American Idol” marked the band’s first performance with the group’s latest addition, 31-year-old guitarist Richie Faulkner (LAUREN HARRIS, DIRTY DEEDS).