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David Already Cooking on iTunes

At first it seemed like overkill, being able to download American Idol performances from iTunes the day after they aired.

Until we realized we could pay 99 cents and listen to David Cook’s version of “Hello” as many times as we wanted!

And thousands of people are clamoring for more, giving the newly crowned Idol winner four out of the five top spots on iTunes’ list of Top Songs. His victory anthem, the songwriting-contest winner “The Time of My Life,” is perched loftily at No. 1.

The other big digital hits for Cook at the moment (literally, at this moment) are his Idol-specific tune, “Dream Big” (which, despite the judges’ distaste, armchair critics seem to love), “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” and “The World I Know”–all songs Cook sang this week.

All that currently stands in the way of a clean sweep of the top five iTunes downloads is Coldplay’s latest single, “Viva la Vida,” which is hogging the No. 3 spot.

But while Cook is already reaping big-time sales with his various covers and Idol offerings, the 25-year-old unknown talent turned object of mass adoration is really looking forward to making an original album that he hopes will “make the hair on your neck stand up.”

“I think it’s going to be a mixture of my writing and hopefully writing with other people. I just want to come out of the gate with a solid record,” he told reporters in a conference call Friday.

“It’ll probably be a rock record,” he added in response to the inevitable what’s-your-vibe question. “Even if it doesn’t do well commercially, as long as I can put out a record I am proud of.” (He does know he just won American Idol, right?)

“That’s the goal right now. And hopefully the success will follow.”

Cook says he’ll probably start work on his debut effort once the three-month American Idols Live tour wraps up at the end of the summer.

And what of the youngster he beat by 12 million votes Wednesday in becoming your American Idol?

David Archuleta is doing just fine, thanks. His laudable cover of “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me” is the seventh-most downloaded song on iTunes, and his finale song, “In This Moment,” is sitting pretty at No. 10.

The 17-year-old told also told reporters Friday he’s “feeling just great” about his rival’s victory.

“The fact that Cook won, he deserved it so much,” Archuleta said. “He just proved that week after week that he deserved to be the American Idol from early in the competition.”

And Archuleta has finally proved he can string enough words together to create articulate, intelligent and yet still gracious statements.

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