Born to Run? Teen star Demi Lovato launches tour

Thu May 28, 2009 9:10am EDT
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By Dean Goodman

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Disney teen idol Demi Lovato kicks off her first headlining U.S. tour next month with the usual trappings, like a band and a flashy light show.

And the same youngsters who blew out their parents' eardrums at concerts by Disney stablemates the Jonas Brothers and Miley Cyrus will likely work themselves into another high-pitched frenzy when the 16-year-old singer/actress takes the stage.

But what the Texas-born star of the Disney Channel series "Sonny with a Chance" really wants to do is play big arenas by herself, more in the earnest mold of a certain veteran rocker rarely linked to teen pop.

"I want to get to the point where one day I don't have to have anything but a rug and a microphone stand on stage and still be able to sell out places like Madison Square Garden, like Bruce Springsteen does," Lovato told Reuters in a recent interview.

"People are there to appreciate his music rather than his glamour or anything like that. It's kinda the path I wanna go down with music, to become more credible and more respected as an artist and musician."

Credibility, respect and artistry are qualities not often associated with teen pop -- or with pop music in general these days. Carefully manufactured singers perform tunes written by others. And if they're actually singing, that's a bonus.

But the fresh-faced Lovato does not seem to be a complete invention of the Disney marketing machine, even if a publicist did cut off business-related questions during the interview.

"I'd rather sound really bad than lip-synch," she said. "And that's happened. I've had really bad shows, but at least people know that I'm not lip-synching. And that's more important to me ... It's definitely not gonna be a Britney Spears-type show."   Continued...

<p>Cast member Demi Lovato poses at the premiere of "Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience" at El Capitan theatre in Hollywood, California February 24, 2009. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni</p>