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Live It Up

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Album Review

Winner of the ninth season of American Idol, the season that will forever be remembered as Simon Cowell’s last, Lee DeWyze somehow eked out a victory against neo-hippie soulster Crystal Bowersox, charming with a smarmy shyness that never quite seemed to jibe with a guy who kicked around bars in the suburbs for the better part of a decade. Other Idol winners were journeymen in disguise — think cornball Taylor Hicks or well-coifed rocker David Cook — but DeWyze’s major-label debut, Live It Up, sounds like the work of a local band that was given a chance to run wild in a professional studio. 19 Recordings team their winner with an army of professionals led by Toby Gad and John Shanks but they don’t dictate the direction of the album; they shape DeWyze’s singsong strum-alongs and MOR pop into something resembling a triple-A chart hit, letting similarities to Jack Johnson, Jason Mraz, and John Mayer stand strong. DeWyze can wrangle a pleasant melody, particularly when he’s favoring sunswept SoCal folk-pop. When things are light and simple on Live It Up, DeWyze seems like himself.

Customer Reviews

Weak Album.

Seems like Lee hasn't found his musical Identity yet. because the songs sound like wired drop outs from Jason Mraz / Jack Johnson / John Mayer albums.This type is not really his style. and there's nothing really special about them - I feel like I heard those songs tons of times before.

The production is really solid, and a little bit embarrasing for an idol winner. (Me and My Jealousy is a good example for it) and seems like the album is unfinished.

It's frustrating, because when I heard his recordings from Idol I noticed that he has a good recording voice, but now it sounds very strange and auto-tuned.

I'm pretty sure he could do better than that.. honestly. one of the weakest idol albums, ever.


I absolutely lov lee and was counting down the days until the album came out and I love the songs!! Im a Lee fan all the way.Great job Lee!!!!


This album has something for everybody. Lee knows how to harness his voice to sing different styles, whether it's rock, folk, pop or even soul. Lee shows off his talent and addictive tone in his beautiful songs. His songwriting is very relatable and tells a story. For a major label debut, Lee did a fantastic job of making the kind of music he wants to make.


Born: April 2, 1986 in Mount Prospect, IL

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Before winning the ninth season of American Idol, Lee DeWyze released two independent albums that introduced his mix of husky vocals and acoustic singer/songwriter fare. Working under the tutelage of Ministry guitarist Louis Svitek, who doubled as his producer and mentor, DeWyze made his solo debut with the release of 2007's So I'm Told. Slumberland followed several years later. Meanwhile, he worked in a paint store to make ends meet. DeWyze's career received a big boost in 2010, when he began competing...
Full Bio
Live It Up, Lee DeWyze
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Customer Ratings