Fox just filled some “Blank Space,” officially naming Scott Borchetta — the man who discovered Taylor Swift at age 14 — as Randy Jackson‘s replacement for the upcoming season of “American Idol.” That said, the network is calling the swap more of a “reimagining” of the mentor role.
Jackson officially parted from the long-running singing competition last month. He had quit being a judge after Season 11, but returned for two more runs as a mentor.
Borchetta is the president and chief executive of the Big Machine Label Group. His Big Machine Records — Swift’s label — will partner with 19 Entertainment and Universal Music Group to oversee the launch of the next “Idol” winner’s career.
The company also counts Tim McGraw, Reba, Rascal Flatts, Florida Georgia Line and The Band Perry among its roster of talent. Borchetta’s artists have sold more than 400 million albums and had more than 155 songs hit No. 1. The Big Machine Label Group is the top independent record label in the world, based on sales and radio airplay, Fox boasted on Wednesday.
The music industry veteran joined the “American Idol’s” 14th season during its Hollywood Week.
“There’s only one reason I’m doing this: ‘American Idol’ has proven again and again that it can launch superstars,” Borchetta said in the announcement. “I believe that working with these young artists the same way we work with new artists at the Big Machine Label Group will help the next ‘American Idol’ be as prepared as possible to continue the tradition of creating new superstars.”
“The greatest legacy of ‘American Idol’ is that we produce legitimate stars,” added competition creator and executive producer Simon Fuller. “Over the years, not only have we made more stars than any other talent show in the world, we have also provided the very best people from the music industry to guide our singers and offer valuable advice.”