X Factor album deals: Would you buy a CeCe Frey album?

Norman Byrd's picture

With Tate Stevens winning a recording contract and industry insiders talking label deals for the remaining "X Factor" Top 4, will finalist CeCe Frey land an album deal -- and if she does, would you buy it?

So far the rumor mill that surrounds the singing competition reality shows hasn't churned out any real speculation on the topic, but it can't be long until CeCe Frey's name becomes part of the swirling talk of new album deals and signings going on in the wake of the "X Factor" finale. Love her or hate her, Frey finished in the sixth position among the top finalists on the show and has managed to amass quite the fan base, so it stands to reason that some recording company just might find her worth investing in -- even if only as a long-shot gamble that could pay off.

And don't think for a second that it won't be Simon Cowell. The creator, producer, and judge/mentor of "X Factor" runs his own recording label, Syco Records, in partnership with Sony Music. Whether or not he said it for the cameras (thinking she got a raw deal from the producers and editors casting the Illinois girl as a "mean girl" earlier in the season), Simon admitted he liked the ostentatious pop singer, referring to her as a "tryer." The brutally honest Simon did say that CeCe wasn't worth a $5 million recording contract (and given her performances, he was certainly correct in that assessment), but that doesn't mean that the businessman with over 300 million record sales to his credit won't take a shot at someone who could potentially be the next Kesha. Besides, there is little doubt he could sign CeCe Frey to a far smaller contract as a jump-off, further, bigger, and better deals to be contingent upon the results of the first album and its singles.

Still, would she be a good investment? The 21-year-old made it into the live rounds of the shows and was a constant bottom dweller in the voting. Her sometimes weak and inconsistent vocals did her no favors, nor did the song choices. But even though her live performances left a bit to be desired (a lot in some instances, like when she performed Survivor's "Eye of the Tiger"), she had no problem doing the choreography and getting through the material. And yet, the same thing can be said of big names like the aforementioned Kesha and mega-pop star Taylor Swift. Both of those bestselling artists sound like off-key karaoke versions of their recorded selves during live performances. That being said, who is to say that CeCe couldn't turn out an acceptable studio recording?

So, presupposing CeCe garnered an album deal, who would buy it? If her Facebook and Twitter accounts are an indication, she just might have a solid enough fan base to get her career off to a good start. At present, the sixth-placer has over 113,000 friends on Facebook and almost 400,000 followers on her Twitter account (@CeCeMissXtotheO).

(To compare, she has more followers on Twitter than Cassadee Pope, who boasts over 375,000, and half as many Facebook friends. But Pope had a large following even before she appeared on and eventually won the third season of "The Voice," not to mention five albums under her belt, four with her former band, Hey Monday. CeCe Frey was a virtual unknown when she stepped on the audition stage in Kansas City earlier in 2012. So...)

And she certainly isn't shy about marketing herself. She made headlines with her nearly "nude" attire at the "X Factor" season finale after party.

To be sure, there are no guarantees in the music business. Look at the finalists from "X Factor" Season 1 that have recorded albums thus far (the entire Top 6, with seventh-place finisher Astro due to an album as well). Not one of them has had a major hit, including the winner of the $5 million, Melanie Amaro. At the same time, Simon Cowell has reportedly shown interest in signing not just the Season 2 winner, Tate Stevens (who won his contract), but also the rest of the Top 4 -- Carly Rose Sonenclar, Fifth Harmony, and Emblem3.

And given the talent shown by fifth-place finalist Diamond White, that 13-year-old is undoubtedly in line for a recording deal as well.

So don't be surprised if you hear rumors and even an eventual album contract signing by CeCe Frey. And don't be surprised if she sounds a bit different and a whole lot better on the radio than she did in her live performances. Given the magic that can be done via electronics, engineering, vocal modulation, and autotuning (bane to the industry that it is), don't be surprised if the girl winds up with a hit song. Just don't expect her live performances to measure up (you know, like Taylor Swift). Besides, not being a great vocalist has never stopped artists from becoming accomplished and/or successful artists (read: Neil Diamond, Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan, etc.).

But first, CeCe needs a recording deal...

"X Factor" returns for a third season in the Fall of 2013. In the meantime, Simon and company will be looking for a hit maker. Who knows? CeCe Frey could very well be the one to get it for them...

Take Home Message: CeCe Frey seems to be cast in the Lady Gaga mold of new artists, unafraid and unashamed to be ostentatious, titillating, and risque. At the same moment that it is attention-grabbing, such emphasizing of the superficial and provocative also distracts from limitations and (sometimes) true talent. And although one must admire CeCe as perseverent, her drive to become successful in the music business borders on the personally demeaning. This might go a long way with gaining acceptance from big-time producers (the willingness to do anything to succeed), but when the price paid is personal pride and dignity, the toll should be considered with care.

(photo credit: X Factor, Fremantle North America, SycoTV, Fox Television)


Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
she´s have a good voice if you look the first part of the show you will see(audition,boot camp & judge holme´s) but bad choices of song was made for her,so did work...and one great voice without attitude is like one car without one driver,don´t going anywhere Ex:melanie amarro great voice but no attitude and charisma = failed can´t sale record

Submitted by cinthya braga (not verified) on
she´s have a good voice if you look the first part of the show you will see(audition,boot camp & judge home´s) but bad choices of song was made for her,so did work...and one great voice without attitude is like one car without one driver,don´t going anywhere Ex:melanie amarro great voice but no attitude and charisma = failed can´t sell records

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
I have better things to do with my money then to spend it on a 1 hit wonder,thats if she even does that.She seem to copy a few famous artists,she doesnt have her own style.The "warrior" crap is real old.From what ive read on her page she would be better off in Brazil then in the States She doesnt seem to be well like here..I wouldn't put alot of time and effort and money into her carrier ,she might be in the limelight now,,but this time next year CeCE Who?

Submitted by Rex (not verified) on
I would definately buy her album. She will be bigger than Gaga. Katy, Swift, and Kesha.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
hahahahhaha Prob 1 of her many STALKER fans :)

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
What are you smoking?? LOLOLOLOLOL

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
This young lady (Cece Frey) possesses all the qualities of a superstar, and then some. She's a reality TV show herself within a reality TV singing contest, which made the show worth watching, whether you like her or not. As much as I like THE VOICE, that show got boring once Cece hit the air waves. She virtually single handedly saved X-FACTOR from bad ratings after the world series fiasco. She got a raw deal when the X-Factor camera men jumped on her abundant confidence to boost their ratings, the result of film editing. Besides the fact she is super model material, she's a stellar voice and singer, and put the best and most-difficult large-scale stage shows on the air. Personality, ambition, and talent goes a long way, and she's cool (Demi and Simon will tell you). Her Lady Marmalade performance was especially likable, because she was cute, sassy, and classy versus burlesque and raunchy, something few others could deliver and that the industry could use today. Don't need another Gaga. Cece needs to remain herself, ie different. She did have minor pitch issues "only after the live shows began", and occasionally when delivering excessive emotion at Demi's request. Yet, she sang a number of "very difficult" songs that were as good as any sung on the show, so the minor pitch issue is clearly resolvable. Never forget, she placed 6th best in America with all the unjust contraversy (no one else would have survived). She'll likely be one who reinvents herself regularly. I have no doubt Cece Frey will succeed in a grand way, whether Syco signs her or not, and they'll be crazy to pass that deal up. Frey has it in her to surpass Underwood, if she acquires song writers as good. You go girl!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Clearly this post was written by CeCe or her Mom.Still laughing at the comment she saved the X factor and she will surpass Underwood.REALLY?? Sure she has 114K likes but look at her numbers"people talking" its dropped over 8K in a few days.She might get a deal.but it will be for a very short time..Best of luck.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Like Demi said/\. She isn't LIKABLE.Thats what hurt her in the show..


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