Since her 2004 American Idol win, Fantasia Barrino has weathered her fair share of music business shake-ups, surviving mergers and the recent repositioning of her mentor Clive Davis, who signed her to J Records. Though she still has her contract at J, EW.com now hears that as of today, Fantasia has been dropped from 19 Management. The reason for the split, according to sources, is that age-old saw “creative differences.” However, like many other Idol contestants, Fantasia remains on the label 19 Recordings and will continue to share music sales profits with the company.
Given the poor climate for record sales, and the lackluster sales of many Idol releases, Fantasia’s albums have done fairly well. Her debut, Free Yourself, sold almost 2 million copies, and the follow-up, 2006’s Fantasia, went gold and garnered three Grammy nominations. She also starred in her own Lifetime TV biopic, authored a book about her rags-to-riches story, and received top billing in the Broadway production of The Color Purple. Says one executive and Fantasia defender: “She’s a star and so multi-talented in every area. Sometimes you have to sever a relationship in order to move forward, but there’s no doubt that Fantasia is accomplished and has proven herself. Someone will want to represent her.”
A rep for 19 declined to comment, but assured EW that management deals for David Cook, Carrie Underwood, Chris Daughtry, Jordin Sparks, and Blake Lewis remain intact. 19 also represents Annie Lennox and The Spice Girls.