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 highest-rated show, he's 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.|