American Idol Katharine McPhee Lands New Major Label Deal and TV Series

06/10/2011
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Former American Idol Katharine McPhee has a new major label deal and a new TV series. Here is the announcement: NBC and Columbia Records have agreed to a recording rights deal for the soundtrack of NBC's new musical series "Smash" and series star Katharine McPhee also signed a solo recording deal with Columbia Records.

"Smash" -- starting mid-season on Mondays (10-11 p.m. ET) on NBC -- stars Debra Messing ("Will & Grace"), McPhee ("American Idol") and Oscar winner Anjelica Huston ("Prizzi's Honor").

The announcements were made by Robert Greenblatt, Chairman, NBC Entertainment, and Rob Stringer, Chairman, Columbia/Epic Label Group. The arrangement guarantees worldwide, digital and physical rights to the first season of "Smash" with successive options to subsequent seasons.

"A musical series should naturally be accompanied by a soundtrack deal, and NBC is very excited to be working with the best. Our Columbia Records partners will guide the soundtrack of 'Smash' into a big component of the show's success," said Greenblatt. "The music will be a driving force of what promises to make a tremendous impact for NBC in January and we couldn't have asked for better expertise and strategy than this company will provide."

"We are thrilled and proud to be chosen by NBC to work on their amazing new show," said Rob Stringer, Chairman, Columbia/Epic Label Group. "Music is at the heart of 'Smash,' and with our wonderfully creative broadcast partners, we will develop innovative strategies to present this music to a huge audience."

"Smash" is a musical drama that celebrates the beauty and heartbreak of the Broadway theater as it follows a cross-section of dreamers and schemers who all have one common desire -- to be a "Smash." The soundtrack will be both original compositions by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, the Tony and Grammy Award-winning songwriters of Broadway blockbusters such as "Hairspray" and "Catch Me If You Can," as well as covers of a variety of existing hits that will combine to tell the narrative of this musical series.

McPhee's career launched with her renowned run on "American Idol" in 2006 in which she was the runner-up on the fifth season. Her self-titled debut album "Katharine McPhee" was released in January 2007 and premiered at the #2 spot on the Billboard 200. The first single from the album, "Over It," was a Pop Top 30 hit and was certified gold in 2008.

"Unbroken," McPhee's second album, was released in January 2010 and debuted at #27 on the Billboard 200. The album included the single "Had It All," which crested at #22 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart. McPhee has already had success with Christmas releases from her 2007 single "O Come All Ye Faithful" and "I'll Be Home for Christmas" in 2009.

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