We recently received a comment by someone who noticed the excessive coverage of
American Idol’s James
Durbin on our site. My response was that we have not covered him nearly enough.
James Durbin is currently shattering many misconceptions and stereotypes about what individuals with special needs are capable of and is raising a tremendous amount of awareness for both Asperger’s and Tourette’s. The positive feedback we have received about Durbin has been nothing short of remarkable and he has been responsible for giving hope to many affected by autism and other related disorders. As a result, I feel it’s necessary to continue reporting on James as much as possible so people will continue to learn about his story and discover just how far he’s come to get where he is.
A few days ago at an American Idol Top 13 party in Los Angeles, James was interviewed by HollywodLife.com and opened up about his family, personal life and even addressed the many comparisons being made to Season 8 American Idol runner-up, Adam Lambert. The interview, which can be seen below, is fascinating for several reasons.
First of all, it is one of the first times we have seen James in an unscripted, unedited environment. His facial tics are overwhelmingly noticeable and while watching the interview, I couldn’t help to think about the horrible teasing he must have endured while growing up. In fact, a reader posted the following to our site yesterday:
I am from Santa Cruz, California. I know several people who know James, or who have kids who went to school with James. As the story goes, James was bullied horribly for his afflictions. I am not sure if he is on medication or what his deal is. But I know that the tourettes (sic) and Aspergers (sic) (which was not even named until 1994) were very visable (sic) in James while he was in school. I have heard stories from too many people.
I wish James well.
And despite his talent and accomplishments, James has received some harsh
criticism online, mostly because people think he’s not "autistic
enough" and others who are die-hard Adam Lambert fans who claim that he’s
only a knock-off version, with a narrower vocal range.
In his interview, Durbin addresses these comparisons and also mentions that he had auditioned for American Idol several years ago and did not make the cut.
With all of the obstacles and challenges James has overcome over the years, his accomplishments so far have been truly inspiring. Additionally, judging from the interview, James appears to be a very genuine and grounded individual and it’s highly likely that as he continues to advance in the competition, his fan base will only continue to grow, increasing his chances to become the next American Idol.