Five '90s Songwriters Who Should Produce Kris Allen's Album

One of the great comeback tales of the past few years has been the one owned by Linda Perry, who rescued herself from one-hit-wonder obscurity to become a top collaborator with some of the biggest names in pop music (like Christina Aguilera, Alicia Keys and Gwen Stefani). Kris Allen is currently working with super-producers David Hodges (Kelly Clarkson, Daughtry), Salaam Remi (Amy Winehouse) and Claude Kelly (Leona Lewis, Akon), but here are five circa-'90s songwriters who Allen should draft into collaboration service.

» Gregg Alexander: Alexander made a splash in 1998 when his band New Radicals scored a big hit with "You Get What You Give." The group only produced one album, and since then Alexander has actually made a name for himself as a collaborator-for-hire, working with Hanson, Enrique Iglesias and Santana (whose "The Game of Love" won Alexander a Grammy in 2003). But he needs a big breakout that can take him to the next level, and his mastery of arrangements and sonic layering would free Allen up profoundly.

» Evan Dando: The frontman of the Lemonheads has had his share of issues, but he has never lost his ability to build fragile melodies around spacious, airy arrangements. "If I Could Talk I'd Tell You" would have been a great tune for Allen to bust out during competition.

» Sean Nelson: Harvey Danger had one notorious hit in 1998 with a song called "Flagpole Sitta." Though that tune always seemed like a novelty, Nelson has always had a way with an anthem. In case Allen wants to get wordy or snarky, Nelson could be the one to offer him some focus.

» Tracy Bonham: Bonham got swept up in the post-Alanis era, where any woman with a guitar and a yelp could get on the radio for a few minutes (see also Meredith Brooks, Bif Naked and Poe). Her hit single "Mother Mother" was a delightful little slice of bile that still had a great chorus. Plus, Bonham has formal voice training (so she can lend Allen a few pointers) and has toured with the Blue Man Group (so she knows a thing or two about performance theatrics).

» Jill Cunniff: Cunniff sang and played bass in Luscious Jackson, whose brand of alterna-centric dance music didn't catch on when the band was in its prime but is perfect for today's pop sensibilities. Plus, she now makes music with tropicalia and surf influences — a perfect base upon which Allen can build his musical empire.