Simon Cowell's Il Divo group debuts fourth on Billboard's 200 chart
UPI News Service, 05/01/2005
Fox's "American Idol" judge Simon Cowell's opera pop group Il Divo has achieved the highest U.S. chart entry for a debut album from a British-signed act.
Il Divo debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 Bestselling Albums chart after selling 146,000 albums.
Following the commercial success of "American Idol" second season runner up Clay Aiken, who attracts female fans ages 3 to 93, Cowell commented the middle-aged female market had been undeserved by the music industry.
Cowell conducted a two-year international talent search and found David Miller from America, Sebastien Izambard from France, Urs Buhler from Switzerland and Carlos Marin from Spain to form the virtuosic vocal quartet -- mostly with backgrounds in opera that appear to be a younger, hotter "The Three Tenors" or an older more sophisticated boy band.
Cowell is apparently aiming at the middle-aged female market, with one track of Il Divo's album entitled "Mama." The group has already appeared on the "The Oprah Winfrey Show."
"I am actually intimidated and slightly in awe of their talent!" Cowell said in a statement. "I am more proud of this album than anything else I've been involved with."