There was a time when David Archuleta's only competition for the spotlight was a follically challenged bartender with a proclivity for grunge music and badly sung notes. Now, though, without the benefit of two weekly appearances on television's most popular show, he battling for the world's attention with all sorts of radio-pop hobgoblins: Today, Archuleta releases his first-ever major-label album — not that you'd know it from the disproportionate media coverage being heaped on moderately popular country singer Taylor Swift, who also has a CD out this morning. Clearly Swift has the more aggressive publicist. But how do she and Archuleta compare otherwise? After the jump, Vulture takes an unbiased, chart-based look.
|Biography||Swift. Born in posh Wyomissing, Pennsylvania. Had a record deal at age 13. Claims to have sold 3.5 million copies of her debut album.||Archuleta. Raised in hardscrabble Murray, Utah. Scrappily fought his way through various televised singing competitions with hard work, perseverance, and some light stage fathering.|
|Personal Life||Recently confirmed reports that she's dated Joe Jonas of the Jonas Brothers.||Keeps his tales of backstage debauchery and celebrity hookups to himself, thank you very much.|
|Music||Straddles both country and pop. Writes her own songs.||Sings soulful radio pop with similarly titanic choruses — except his songs are written by professionals.|
|Album||Is called Fearless (presumably because that's what a person would have to be to release a CD the same day as David Archuleta). We haven't heard it yet since Swift's record company has selfishly decided not to leak it to the Internet.||Is called David Archuleta, it leaked last week, and it's awesome!|
|Lyrics||Uses real names of people she knows in her songs, so much of her music is only relatable if you have made out with Joe Jonas.||Sings almost exclusively in the second person, so nearly all of his songs are about you, the listener, specifically.|
|Hair||Is yellow and impossibly shiny, probably requiring several hours of daily maintenance. Consequently, singing practice takes a backseat.||Short and unfussed over. Is in no way a distraction from the music.|
|Salacious Gossip||Has been dogged by pregnancy rumors.||Has never been rumored to be pregnant.|