Winning isn’t everything, but losing just might be. In fact, coming in second has been a career booster for some high-profile losers who by rights should be on the trash heap of also-ran-dom. Take ”American Idol”’s Clay Aiken. Not only did the angel-faced crooner’s second-place performance land him on the cover of ”Rolling Stone” before AI winner Ruben Studdard, but his debut CD, ”Measure of a Man,” sold a commanding 613,000 copies in its first week of release (Studdard’s hits Dec. 9). ”I almost feel like the fact that he ended up being a runner-up kind of added to his appeal,” notes ”Billboard”’s Geoff Mayfield. No doubt that idea is what prompted the folks behind ”The Bachelor” to cast unlucky-in-made-for-TV-love runner-up Trista Rehn. Then there’s ”Bachelorette” reject Bob Guiney, perhaps the most lovable (turned kiss-happy) loser making hay on the small screen. Hey, in a country where not actually winning the popular vote can lead to the Oval Office, it pays to aim low.
Ryan Seacrest hosts as Katy Perry, Lionel Richie, and Luke Bryan guide aspiring singers on their way to superstardom.