Cirina Interviews Randy Jackson and Nigel Lythgoe – American Idol in NAB Broadcasting Hall of Fame

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(Las Vegas, 2013 NAB, April 9, 2013)
FOX’s long-running television icon and a model of innovative use of social media in entertainment, American Idol was inducted into the NAB Broadcasting Hall of Fame at yesterday’s NAB 2013 Television Luncheon.

Accepting the award were Idol’s judge Randy Jackson, executive producer Nigel Lythgoe and Trish Kanane, who is the executive producer and president of entertainment programming for Freemantle of North America. Chris Daughtry, popular contestant from the fifth season performed and Nancy O’Dell, host of Entertainment Tonight charmed the enthusiastic audience of some of televisions most prominent executives.

Idol judge, Randy Jackson, and executive producer, Nigel Lythgoe, spoke with us backstage in the green room while they were waiting for the ceremonies to begin. I asked Nigel how production of the show has changed as social media has become more powerful and Randy spoke about how he stays inspired after all these years. They both agreed, they love music!

Listen to the full interview (with transcript) here: Randy Jackson & Nigel Lythgoe Backstage at NAB

Nigel says when they first brought the show to the United States, there were challenges getting Americans up to speed with social media, “When we first came here people weren’t even texting. We were much further ahead in Europe than America was and it was a shock for us how it hadn’t caught on here, so we built that slowly and went through it and texting became the big thing to do and now, of course, we are looking at the 2nd Screen and we are trying to work out with an entirely different team how to make stuff for that second screen.”

The show receives upwards of 130 million hits from fans texting to vote, and the producers are continually programming avenues for their audience to travel in order to most enjoy the show. As Nigel says, “it’s a really exciting time because being able to think of other ways that your audience can interact with each other as well as the program is very exciting.”

Randy says, “I am in it to win it! Listen, I think music is the heart and soul of what I do. It is what I’ve done all my life. This is a music show first and foremost. I love discovering talent. I did that as an A&R guy for 15 years. It is what I do. It is where I live. I live in the music zone. I just signed two funk bands that will take you back to the 70′s. One that will remind you of Credence, the other will remind you of Tower of Power. You know, I love new talent. I love music, so it provides me with a great outlet and an outreach to what I do.”

He continues, “I am just most proud of being recognized; you know what I mean? We don’t set out to get awards or accolades, but it is really nice for people to see what we are doing and what we continue to try and do and give us props for it, so I love that!”

Here’s NAB’s video of the event (via 13Keys): American Idol Inducted

You can also search @AmericanIdol and #NABShow on twitter to learn more.