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Make Sam Harris a Judge on The New Star Search!

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As everyone knows, Sam Harris was the Male Vocalist Grand Champion of the premiere season of Star Search. The small town white boy with enormous soulful voice swept the hearts of America to the tune of 25 million viewers a week. In that entire season Sam sang "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" only twice (and not even for the final win!) and yet it has become iconically his. Though the list of successful alumni is long, Sam is still the most associated name with the show. Brad Garrett, (from Everybody Loves Raymond) was a contestant at the time, and called it "The Sam Harris Show". Even the producers later admitted that the next 12 years of Star Search's run were a result of the momentum of Sam Harris' initial appearances.

Sam set a standard that was often duplicated but never attained. In the following seasons it was often heard, "They are trying to sound like Sam Harris." In an article in Rolling Stone Magazine, Sam's impact was named as a major influence in a shift in pop music itself. Sam has the respect of the old school legends as well as numerous platinum artists from pop to soul and even hip hop and rap, who have credited Sam as a primary influence in their music. Sam has gone on to sell millions of records, starred on Broadway, on film and on tv in numerous appearances in specials, episodic and a series for CBS. We are long time fans for a reason. Because he is the real thing. He has toured the world and performed for presidents. He is the consummate performer who still wipes the floor with anyone when he opens his mouth to sing. He gets better (and handsomer!) with the years. And Oprah loves him! He's good TV!

Last year American Idol reached its zenith in its discovery of Adam Lambert. He displayed the same kind of vocal ability, range  and potential star power that Sam did originally. There were thousands of web sites, web groups and discussions in print, on radio and television about how Adam was "The New Sam Harris". His longevity remains to be seen, but the initial fever had not been seen since Sam. Adam is an admitted fan and insiders say Sam has been a studied role model on style and performance technique. It was evident in every arrangement he did on the show.

In 2003 when Star Search resurfaced and dismally failed, the consensus was that it lacked any compelling credibility of judges.  (Ben Stein? Really?) Sam was the obvious choice then, and whether they didn't ask him or he wanted to distance himself from the show, we don't know, but it would have certainly been a different show with his presence.

For those who know his work on the stage or have seen pieces he's written or have viewed his numerous vlogs on YouTube,  Sam would be a great judge on Star Search, not just because he is a great singer and performer. He is intelligent, articulate and aware. He is a teacher. He is a fan of talent in all forms and has given greatness a platform whenever he encounters it.  And he's funny. Really funny. He has a grace and wit while he tells it like it is. Sam remains a breath of fresh air in a time when singers tend to close their eyes and show off their licks without listening to what they are singing. Unlike many of the judges of talent shows, Sam knows how to communicate what needs to be done because he does it himself. He reinvents everything he sings.

As long time and new fans of Sam Harris alike, we demand that Sam Harris be considered as a Judge on the new Star Search.

And Sam, if you're reading this, this petition is to show you how much we want you to consider it too!


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