Winning American Idol is no guarantee that you'll actually keep a major label deal.
Just prior to Christmas, rumors began circulating that season 2's champion Ruben Studdard, who released three albums for J Records since 2003 (the latest, 2006's The Return, to modest sales), had been dropped.
Now, reports are circulating season 5 winner Taylor Hicks has also lost his J Records deal.
"Taylor is going to record his next album on his own," said a label rep. "He is no longer on the J Records roster."
What will this mean for the next American Idol winner? Is the show no longer a guarantee star maker?