Western Washington singers have had a generous share of airtime on television’s top vocal competitions in the past few years. With the new season of ”The Voice,” which starts Monday on NBC, the trend continues. Maybe.
In contention in the first round (and maybe beyond) is singer-songwriter Austin Jenckes, a young troubadour from rural Duvall. Part of the Seattle indie scene, Jenckes has put out several albums (including the recent “An American Story,” recorded in Nashville).
Will Jenckes’ unvarnished, heartfelt, country-folk twang wow the jaded judges? Here’s a sampling of his self-penned tunes: http://austinjenckes.bandcamp.com/
Meanwhile, after a rugged year of sinking ratings and judges’ warfare, “American Idol” is on the road auditioning singers for a 2014 season with, hopefully, better judge chemistry.
The unobjectionable country idol Keith Urban will return to the table, as will pop glamour puss Jennifer Lopez. The third, new arbiter is the wild card: Harry Connick Jr., a superior vocalist and piano whiz, a gifted actor, and a tell-it-like-it-is Idol coach in years past. And did I mention what a cut-up Harry is? Maybe he’ll bring new snap, sizzle and musical savvy to the show.