Wannabe hipsters, indie purists, and dyed-in-the-leather rockers scoff at hokey talent competitions like "American Idol" and "The X Factor," but there are a couple new programs in production that just might make the skinny-jeans set tune in...or try out.
The first of these shows is ABC's very intriguing-sounding "You're Booked," which has been described as the "Shark Tank" of talent shows and will star well-connected talent bookers like the Roxy's Nic Adler, MGM Resorts International's Chris Baldizan, AEG Live's Ali Harnell, and the Caesars Entertainment Corporation's Kurt Melien as judges. (Yes, that's right: No celebrity judges! How refreshing!) The fact that Hollywood's fabled Sunset Strip venue the Roxy is involved means this show might be a TV treat for rock 'n' roll fans. (My guess is the Roxy's involvement will keep that hater Adam Levine from tuning in, however.)
Each self-contained episode of "You're Booked," produced by "Shark Tank's" Clay Newbill and "America's Got Talent's" James Sunderland, will feature an array of performers (singers, bands, dancers, comedians) competing for a chance to play at one of the four bookers' world-famous venues. The "You're Booked" pilot was shot in March at Hollywood's Dolby (formerly Kodak) Theater; no word yet on when it will air on ABC, but if Adler makes his booking picks wisely, I may check out one of his winning acts at the Roxy someday.
The second of these talent searches is the EDM-themed "She Can DJ," courtesy of Astralwerks Records, the label home of Swedish House Mafia, Basement Jaxx, the Chemical Brothers, Empire Of The Sun, Diamond Rings, and a jillion other supercool electronic and alternative acts. The talent search for the next great female DJ/producer, which was a success in Australia last year, will launch in the States in July. There's no televised component to "She Can DJ" as of this writing, but the competition will take place on CBS Radio in major American markets. One lucky lady DJ will win an Astralwerks recording contract and a national tour presented by CBS Radio.
"The United States is the hottest place on earth for dance music right now, but the industry is largely male-dominated. We're thrilled to be a part of a program that will help discover and develop top female talent in the dance music space," said Astralwerks general manager Glenn Medlinger said in a statement.
Would you check out either of these competitions?