Benny Tipene bumps Jackie Thomas off the top of iTunes with debut single

If there is anything good to be said about Sony’s handling of the X Factor post the show it’s that they appear to actually be doing something.  Unlike Idol where things floundered and then vanished, Sony appear to be taking their role seriously and the fact that 3 of the finalists have now released singles suggests that auditioning for a second season might be worthwhile after all.  I’ve always suggested that the success of the series came down to how committed Sony were going to be to the contestants post the show.  So far things seem to be panning out better than I had expected.

First, Jackie Thomas release her winners single, It’s Worth It and then runner up Whenua Patuwai release his debut single Something Special. This morning, third place getter Benny Tipene release his debut single Walking On Water which has gone straight to number one on iTunes.


It’s probably the best of the three singles that have been released but most notably is that it’s not actually one of Benny’s own tunes.  While I really like the song, it feels somewhat of a betrayal to the Benny we saw on The X Factor as it is a million times better than anything he ever performed on the show.  It’s upbeat and catchy and really suits him but I suspect it is nothing like what he’d actually record on his own.  One must seriously ask how you can go from such dismal song choices week after week after week to a deserving number one single.  One can only assume the decision was made by a different group of people who understand what sells.

It’s been a while since we actually bought a single but Benny Tipene has broken the drought.  I certainly wouldn’t have thought that would be the case a week ago.

Walking On Water - Walking On Water - Single

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About the author

Regan is one of the co-founders of Throng Media.
If they're on, I'm usually watching Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, 24, Battlestar Galactica, The X Factor, Survivor, House of Cards, Mad Men and the NRL.
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  • Trevor Ashman

    Actually I think they should have waited awhile before they released Benny and Whenua’s singles after all Jackie IS the winner …it’s raining on Jackie’s parade 🙁

    • Robyn Gallagher

      I keep saying this – the X Factor is not done as a favour to the contestants.

      The television programme needs to attract viewers to lure in advertisers, and after the TV series the artist/s need to sell music to make money for Sony. Why would Sony sit on the releases from Whenua and Benny when they can make money from them now?

      • K

        I am very very pleased that the runner ups are getting something out of this. I’m also really pleased Jackie won but I think its a real shame when they get nothing…so big ups to Sony!

  • Robyn Gallagher

    The interesting thing is that Whenua’s single release was said to be done “due to popular demand”, which makes it sound like Sony weren’t planning on releasing it until Whenua’s fans caused a ruckus. I’d say Jackie and Benny have more commercial prospects than Whenua, though he’s on the right track getting experience on the Stan Walker tour.

    I like the Benny single – it’s a lot more lively than the stuff he did on the X Factor. While it’s quite different to his own songs, it has a similar tone to the more energetic rock he did with his Palmy band the Nerines, so I’m sure it’s something he is at least comfortable with. (Unlike Jackie, Benny isn’t stuck with just one style of music.)

    It will be interesting to see how it charts next week. I think there’s little crossover with Benny, Jackie and Whenua’s fans, so I wonder how this will translate to sales.

  • Dave

    Anyone know the writing/production credits for Walking on Water and Whenua’s singles? Curious to know who else X Factor went to along with Aussie’s hit factory DNA Songs who did Jackie’s single.

  • Jeseta

    For anyone interested in getting a better idea of Benny’s style than the one song he played on the show, google ‘bandcamp benny tipene’. On that site you can listen to three demo EPs of Benny’s, ‘Tummy Demo Live’, ‘Room Demo Live 4’ and ‘Benny Tipene’. Songs like ‘Stop Jock Pop’, ‘Hiding’, ‘We Safe’ and ‘We’ll Grow’ could be, with the right production, hit singles beyond the ‘X Factor singles’ expectations.