The X Factor: Who Should Replace L.A. Reid?

6 years ago by Nadya Vlassoff

L.A. Reid announced that he will not return to The X Factor for Season 3 – Photo: FOX

Epic Records CEO L.A. Reid recently announced his departure from The X Factor after two seasons as judge and mentor on the popular Fox singing competition.

The departure of L.A. Reid will undoubtedly cause a major shakeup on The X Factor, especially when it comes to professional experience since Simon Cowell will need to find a suitable replacement.

Preferably, Reid’s replacement will be someone who has a similar background of developing talent in the music industry as compared to landing another familiar singer. After all, when it comes to experience, Reid helped launch the careers of Avril Lavigne, Mariah Carey, Justin Bieber, Usher, Ne-Yo, and countless others.

So, with that in mind, what other industry names could potentially fill the big shoes of L.A. Reid?

Clive Davis or David Geffen?

Two names that should be at the top of the list are Clive Davis and David Geffen who have launched the careers of several million selling pop stars. Davis, the current Chief Creative Officer of Sony Music Entertainment, developed such artists as Alicia Keys, Rod Stewart, Carlos Santana, and was the driving force behind the massive success of Whitney Houston.

As for David Geffen, it doesn’t get much bigger since he created Geffen Records back in 1980, which eventually became a part of Universal Music Group. Geffen’s artist list includes the late Donna Summer, John Lennon, Olivia Newton-John, Blink-182, Guns N’ Roses, Nirvana, and many others.

Jimmy Iovine or Russell Simmons?

If The X Factor wants top record executive experience, Interscope-Geffen chairman Jimmy Iovine and/or pioneering Def Jam founder Russell Simmons could easily fill Reid’s shoes. Although Jimmy Iovine has appeared on American Idol, he could be a perfect fit for The X Factor. However, Russell Simmons is still very active online and in the music industry and could also fill the void.

Quincy Jones, Ryan Tedder, Timbaland?

When it comes to producers, however, it doesn’t get much bigger or better than Quincy Jones who produced most of Michael Jackson’s biggest selling albums. Although it may be a stretch to think Jones would accept a full time gig, he’d be perfect for the job.

As far as the current crop of top producers or executives, The X Factor would certainly benefit by adding a name like Ryan Tedder of OneRepublic, who has written and produced songs for the likes of Jennifer Lopez, Adele, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Backstreet Boys, Beyoncé, Jordin Sparks, Chris Cornell and many, many more.

Also a top name, Timbaland is an obvious choice since he’s worked such artists as David Guetta, Pitbull, Justin Timberlake, Bruno Mars, Missy Elliott, Chris Brown, Lil Wayne and current X Factor judge Demi Lovato.


Although reports recently surfaced that Simon Cowell is eager to get Rihanna on board as a new judge for The X Factor, it may be tough to land one of the biggest pop stars in the world at the top of her game. If Britney chooses to leave The X Factor, however, Cowell will certainly need someone on the scale of Rihanna to fill her shoes.

Janet Jackson?

If we’re talking singers, why not Janet Jackson? A star since the age of 7, Janet Jackson knows everything there is about being an “X factor” on a triple threat level. Hailing from the famous Jackson family, the sister of Michael Jackson, Janet has had six #1 albums and ten #1 singles in an impressive career.

Who do you think should replace L.A. Reid on The X Factor?

What do you think?

Nadya Vlassoff

Nadya Vlassoff joined The Deadbolt in 2009 and currently serves as associate content director and contributing editor. A former writer for the boutique apparel and accessories blog, Nadya has interviewed and worked with a variety of top names in pop culture, fashion, entertainment and sports.