14 comments on “A bend in the road

  1. Thanks John for writing. Sad state of today’s music industry. I love the razzmatazzz of the performances but it must have the substance to go with it. Not the story today. Sad.

    Let David be. At the end of the day, it’s between him and God.

    And there is always a comeback story – and it will be sweeter than ever.

  2. Of all the possible scenarios, the one that has fans the most nervous is the one about David going on a formal mission for the LDS Church. David has stated several times he believes music is his mission, so unless he has had a change of heart, I do not see that coming to pass. A fan and member of the LDS Church had a great perspective on this today. It is her belief that David is unlikely to go on a traditional-type mission. In fact, she thinks the Church would actually advise against him going on a proselytizing mission (one that would lock him into a 2-year term). Instead, he could do a humanitarian type mission over time (think India and his work with Rising Star) and/or do what she calls “splits with missionaries” where he could visit prospective members together with full-time missionaries in the towns and cities he travels to. She thinks the Church, which does not provide security for their missionaries, would not feel comfortable with him being on a traditional-type mission. Plus, the crowds he would draw would defeat the purpose of the mission.

    All this being said, I would not be completely surprised if David announced he had decided to commit to a formal mission. However, I would selfishly be disappointed. Besides, it seems to me that David reaches far more people through his musical mission than he ever would on a formal one. Donny Osmond never went on a formal mission, yet David cites Donny and the Osmonds as a great influence in his mother’s family’s decision to join the LDS Church. It’s my understanding LDS leaders at the time practically begged Donny not to go on a formal mission. They understood that he was more useful to their cause as an entertainer than he ever would be out in the field.

    Whatever comes to pass — music, mission, school, (fill in the blank) — I hope we find out soon!

  3. I’m not so sure Jive comes out of this “smelling like roses.” As far as I can tell, it’s a label on the skids. Top management has been leaving, and they are relying on a sex-pot, Britney Spears, to prop up the label. Britney is reaching the age of no return as far as female pop stars are concerned, and her rather limited repertoire and musical abilities, or lack thereof, are unlikely to carry her much further. I think she’s more likely to turn to acting in the near future in order to stay relevant. Her audience is comprised mostly of tweens, teens, and twenty-somethings, and they are not going to be interested in her once she stops looking youthful.

    Jive does have Rhianna, but I’m not sure she’s selling as well as she did a few years ago. As for Chris Brown, I’m not sure how well he’s doing sales-wise, but I doubt he’ll ever get back to where he was.

    What I’m trying to say is that I think Jive is very low on funds, which explains in part the lack of promotion for TOSOD. They are only promoting their artists they feel are a sure thing, and ignoring the rest. Thank goodness David escaped when he did!

  4. Okay, one more quick post and then I’m off to bed! Ciara, another Jive artist, is begging to be released from Jive. (Just do a quick web search and you’ll see what I mean.) Here’s what she is saying about Jive:

    “At times there were songs I chose to lead a project and I was ignored! This project, I even tried to get Gimmie Dat started. I spent tens of thousands of my own money only to hear the radio PDs tell me my label didn’t want the song played. I even spent more than one hundred thousand dollars out of my pocket on the video to bring my vision to it and still no label support. I do understand that some labels are not financially supporting their artists and I have become one of them. “

    She also touched on the poor promotion for her latest album Basic Instinct before thanking fans for their support and promising to deliver new music. “You, my fans, know that I strive to do my best to deliver to my you the best songs and creative vision I possibly can. I’m dedicated to my music, performance and to my fans! I’ve tried to be a team player with the label only to have compromised what I truly believed.. And was not given the right opportunity to promote and inform my fans of the release of this album…”


    Sound familiar?

  5. Thank you, John, for the article. It provoked my thoughts. But I can’t help feeling that it was written more out of exasperation and frustration about the latest development. This calls for my belief that we are, more probably than not, more worried and impatient than David is. 😉

    I understand fully what you say that, in life, accommodation, adjustments and compromises have to be made. But we are talking about David Archuleta here. 🙂 This musical genius, true to his word, makes no compromises. If seen from a negative viewpoint, he is stubborn to a fault. But this young man has a quiet strength that is palpable. He demands his “artistic freedom”. He wants to be respected as an artist much much more than he wants to sell records. He doesn’t want to sing songs he doesn’t “feel”. He wants to be taken seriously as an artist – yes, to the extent of having it at the expense of big commercial success. I personally can relate to this demand of my own creative choices and standards because I am a sort of “artist”(?) too (I paint) – and I don’t think I would ever make compromises to what I want to paint.

    As for Jive, they signed David up immediately after AI, presumably as a “teenage fresh-out-of-the-oven hottie”, little realising that this hottie had an acute insight into his own musicality, someone with a mind and a strong character and a true belief as to what he wants out of his creativity. Anyway, enough said of Jive. Bye bye Jive!

    I do not think David is going to school or a full mission at this point. It would mean to concede defeat. And I doubt he will “throw away” so easily a gift which he totally believes has been “personally” handed to him by God.

    Long live the Archulator!

  6. Hi John,

    Thanks for this thoughtful post.

    While my feelings were all over the place when this piece of news dropped, I’ve decided to flip through COS and was at Chapter 8 – Divine Frequency. David wrote that he chose to have faith in God and His reasons and let faith fuel his decisions and behaviour, whatever they may be. This may seems like utter
    foolishness to many but like Trace said he is stubborn to a fault and will not compromise his belief and what he stands for.

    I must admit that I am extremely ‘selfish’ and the thought of David going away can be quite disturbing but as a fan, I will continue to support and respect whatever decisions he has made. He has tweeted that he’s excited for the opportunities ahead so for my own sanity, I will refrain from reading between those tweets and just sit tightly and wait for any exciting news from him 🙂

  7. Thanks John for penning your views for open discussion. Momentary I agreed with you, but I am positive that he will continue to shine even brighter in his own terms. He may or may not reach out to the millions .. but as long as his passion and love for music, we can be assured that he will triumph. Like Shirley said, I will continue to support, vote, tweet, buy his cds etc.

    So, please do keep this site alive ok? We love it here;-))

  8. Aww John, you need a hug. Such pessimism; do cheer up. =) While I’m not a fan of the ‘everything happens for a reason’ platitude (especially since JBiebz decided to throughly ruin it), this is one case which it applies, I think.

    It will probably do his personality and musical style (his actual musical style, and not the ones they keep superimposing on him) a smaller label, with perhaps not as much promotion or capital, but one that wills till allow him to produce his music and tour and do the other things that he enjoys being involved in.

    Or perhaps his next decision will surprise us all.

    As Katheryn mentioned, I think it might be counter-productive for him to go on a traditional mission, but what his plans and callings are we don’t know.

    At this point, it’s support and wait. I believe David will always be making music, now is just a question of scale.

  9. Ha! Ha! While our emotions have been on a roller coaster ride, David was literally riding roller coasters today at the Six Flags theme park!

  10. Call this a bitter sweet annoucement.

    Bitter- to the fans, we are worried about his future and his plans.

    Sweet- to David, for he is FREE and has the opportinity to soar higher and shine brighter in the coming days, months and years.

    Let’s wait and see how the Lord will raise him up.

  11. Did you guys listen to Fly FM this morning? For an hour or so, they were talking, off and on, about David, invited listeners to phone in and played several of his songs. I called in as well , alerted by Shirley. Everyone expressed their concern and practically swore their undying love – so touching.

  12. hey John,

    Thanks for your thought-provoking article. We all knew that JIVE did not put much effort in promoting TOSOD album and if they did, it would be one of the best sellers. I am sure whoever he is going to sign-up with, he is going to dictate the terms and the kind of music he wants to do. David is pretty popular in the music industry and he must be shopping for music labels. Like Shirley said we just sit tight and wait. Agreed with Shu Yee that you must keep this site “alive” as I, too, love it here!!

    hey Trace,

    Fly FM is always a strong supporter of David. Most of our radio stations are still playing David’s songs. Heard Falling Star at Hitz FM tonight. Wow! and yes, David’s fan base is still strong and I hope someone has recorded this segment as I have missed it. haha..you are truly a loyal fan!! Thanks to Shirley of alerting you and she is a real ninja. 🙂

    hey Katheryn

    hahaha… while we are worried about David’s future, he is enjoying himself at the theme park! I guess he makes better decisions while being spun upside down at high speed!!

    hey James Padfoot,

    Are you still overseas or back home to Malaysia?? Tell us about your learning adventure, if you don’t mind sharing. 🙂

  13. Thanks John and Katheryn…always great reading your thoughts and unwavering support. I think David will be touched by all of us who’s standing loyal and supportive of him always.

    Btw…check out his new blog! :):)

  14. Akang, still overseas. =) It’s been great, I’ll blog about it more. You can check out my blog at dontrunwithscalpels.wordpress.com if you’re interested.

    Trace, thanks for sharing that. That’s really brilliant! A lot of artists, when their popularity fizzles out in the west, moves east. Asian fans tend to be more loyal and shall we say, crazy. David has a huge unwavering fan base in Asia, and any smart exec would see and tap into that. So even if he remains rather average in stardom level, he will still be huge here, and that means he will still be making plenty of music.

    Also, the new blog? Shows a ton of maturity and thoughtfulness without losing his quirky side. (Oh hey, a banana tree!)

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