Ian Bernardo says he has a #4 Billboard record; contract says “we are going to hurt your feelings”

One of the contracts that American Idol contestants sign says that the show will do its best to exploit any weaknesses it finds within them, and one of the biggest losers from this year’s auditions says he already has a number four Billboard record.

During a Larry King Live discussion of the show’s cruelty, American Idol 5 finalist Bucky Covington said that the contract essentially says, “you know, we’re going to hurt your feelings.” Kimberly Caldwell and one other contestant (who the transcript doesn’t identify) both agreed. Bucky elaborated, saying, “I remember reading that line in there. It says if there’s something funny about you, we’re going to go after it.”

Also on Larry King, the rejected New York contestant who wore a t-shirt with his name on it claims he has a record that’s number four on a Billboard chart. “I have a record that’s just been produced by a major label, Reisa Label, which is on the Billboard Charts right now. It is number four. And I’m going to be performing across America,” Ian Bernardo said.

He doesn’t mention which chart, and I don’t care enough to check all of them, but if there’s a Talentless Hack Media Whore chart, his record is probably there. To his credit, Ian admits that the whole thing was a “great experience” because “I got publicity and everything, I got my name out there, I don’t — I don’t feel taken advantage of.” Unfortunately, we feel used by you, Ian.

Another rejected contestant, Chris Henry, was told by Simon, “You should be singing in a dress and stilettos.” Talking about his experience, Chris says, “I’m not going to lie that while it was happening, it wasn’t exactly fun. But, you know, afterwards, looking back it was a great experience to see the hustle bustle and see what was going on so much behind the scenes. … And obviously I just wasn’t what they were looking for.”

By the way, the rest of the show’s transcript is worth a read just for its hilarity. For one, Simon Cowell is frequently identified as “Unidentified Male.” What person working at CNN or its transcript service cannot identify Simon Cowell as he verbally eviscerates yet another talentless contestant?

Larry King Live: “American Idol” Contestants Sound Off About the Show [CNN]

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.