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Interscope Records, which is part of Universal Music Group, replaced Sony Music Entertainment as Idols official partner record label.Interscope's Chairman Jimmy Iovine, a songwriter and producer, was named as the in-house mentor to work with the contestants on a weekly basis.
Ray Chew replaced Rickey Minor as the show's musical director and leader of Idol The show also opened up an option for viewers to cast their votes online through Facebook, allowing 50 votes per account.Some suggested changes, such as allowing the finalists to release music while the season is still in progress rather than waiting to record an album, were not implemented, although music were released somewhat earlier than previous seasons.The judges were Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez, and Randy Jackson.Scotty Mc Creery was crowned the winner of the tenth season of American Idol, making him the youngest male winner at 17 years and seven months old, and the second youngest winner ever behind season 6 winner Jordin Sparks.Season 10 was the first season where 11 contestants went on tour instead of 10.Simon Cowell, who had been a judge since the first episode of the first season, announced on January 11, 2010 that he would not be returning as a judge for this season in order to focus on launching the American version of his hit British singing competition The X Factor.
There were a number of other major changes in season ten, from the judges to the format of the show itself including the opening intro, which used the "Hall of Idols".
Specific changes in the competition itself included extending extra rounds (such as the Las Vegas show) and a final solo round, while also returning the judges' wild card choice.
The show additionally lowered the age of eligibility to 15 years.
If the theme is '80s or Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, every song will be customized to that contestant...
What's most important, is that the song suit the finalist's voice." Extra rounds were added in the Hollywood phase of the competition which would narrow the contestants down to sixty potential finalists.
Interscope's sister labels, A&M Records and Geffen Records, would also be involved in promoting and distributing the albums of the show's finalists.