Who needs the record deal that comes with winning American Idol? This year’s contestants are already taking the iTunes charts by storm, and the competition isn’t even over yet.

We love that the songs that we hear on each performance episode are available on iTunes after the show. And sometimes, it means getting early access to the kind of music we might hear when our favorite hopefuls finally get to record an album full of their own songs.

As the judges have told us time and time again, performing an original song on the Idol stage is always a huge risk — but this time, it’s a risk Alex Preston and Jess Meuse must be pretty glad they took.

Last night, both budding musical artists performed songs they’ve written themselves with the Idol band backing them up, and if nothing else, the positive reception they got showed that they’re definitely headed in the right direction. Alex’s song, “Fairytales,” claimed the No. 25 spot on the iTunes charts, while Jess’s “Blue-Eyed Lie” charted at 15 — a milestone that made yesterday “the most amazing day of my life so far,” she wrote.

These are both incredible accomplishments, especially when you consider that we’d never even heard of Jess or Alex just a couple of months ago. Way to go, guys!

SourcesAlex Preston on Twitter,  Jess Meuse on Instagram