Credit: FOX ©2011 Fox Broadcasting Co.

American Idol’s first episode aired on Fox 10 years ago today, on June 11, 2002. In that decade span, 11 full seasons have aired and 11 young hopefuls have been crowned winner, from Kelly Clarkson in Season 1 to Phillip Phillips from Season 11. Between these near-dozen winners and some of the more successful non-winners, there’ve been a ton of number one hits and records from the Idol gang.

According to Billboard, in fact, there’ve been 345 No. 1 hits from the Idol group alone, and those songs have amounted to 1,142 weeks of chart-topping.

The biggest leaders are Season 1 winner Kelly Clarkson, with 73 #1 hits since the show began, followed closely by Season 4 winner Carrie Underwood who has commanded 62 top hits. Chris Daughtry, who placed fourth in Season 5, comes in third with an impressive 38 No. 1 hits.

The longest streak at the top belongs to Carrie for her album “Some Hearts,” which spent 41 weeks at the top, and her “Inside Your Heaven” topped the Hot Country Singles chart for 35 weeks.

There are some facepalm-worthy inclusions on the Idol successes list, of course — William Hung, anyone? — but for the most part it just goes to show that American Idol has made some major marks on the music industry over the years. Here’s to another successful decade!

Source: Billboard

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