Paul Potts

For starters, you gotta love anyone who can bring that sharp-tongued Simon Cowell close to tears. That's exactly what transpired when Paul Potts auditioned for Britain's Got Talent, the U.K. version of American Idol. His show-stopping performance mesmerized YouTube gazers worldwide and made the onetime supermarket stocker and mobile-phone salesman an instant sensation. Old showbiz adages aside, Potts proved it is indeed possible to become an overnight hit. OK, so the guy doesn't exactly have it going on in the charisma department (although he supposedly had those bad Brit teeth fixed), but with a voice like his, everything else is incidental. Besides, Potts is famously humble and unassuming; it's said he once admitted that he grew up thinking he'd always be anonymous and insignificant. Now, that's an inferiority complex! Nothing like a world tour and millions of adoring fans to inject some self-worth. Then there's his new album, One Chance, a bestseller that heightens Potts' potential. True to his Everyman persona, it boasts an unconventional musical mix and a strong pop presence, from the majestic "Nessun Dorma" (the song that won him the talent competition) to a Spanish-language version of "My Way" and an operatic take on R.E.M.'s "Everybody Hurts." So listen up, all you aspiring nobodies out there — all it took was talent to improve Potts' luck.

KEEP NEW TIMES BROWARD-PALM BEACH FREE... Since we started New Times Broward-Palm Beach, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of South Florida, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Lee Zimmerman