"Hanging Out," the new single from Frisco 15-year-old Cheyenne Kimball, is out today; iTunes has it for the standard 99 cents, which is about 43 cents more than it's worth, but you be the judge. (BTW, her Myspace page lets you play it, and "The Day Has Come," gratis--which means free, kids.) Come to think of it, let me be the judge: The teenypopper with the major-label deal (Sony BMG subsidiary Epic Records) is an Avril-wannabe/Kelly-mightbe who's bound to hit it big with kids in the Nickelodeon crowd who've never heard of Liz Phair. ("Hanging Out" sounds just like post-interesting Phair material.) No doubt they're hanging on every word as Kimball phones in from the tour bus during her weekly podcasts on iTunes.
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Kimball, whose full-length album The Day Has Come will be released June 11, is also following in the footsteps of fellow pre-fab Collin County pop star Jessica Simpson: On May 31, MTV will premiere Cheyenne, a reality show (shoot me, shoot me now) that will document "the struggles and triumphs Cheyenne faces as she attempts to take her career one step further, hoping to achieve her dream of becoming a rock superstar," as MTV Series Entertainment exec VP Lois Curren put it in a press release. Because, as we all know, stardom should in no way be an organically achieved, hard-fought reward; it's the right of every teenager lucky enough to look like that and sound like everyone else, and bless Sony BMG for recognizing that. So maybe that's a little harsh: She's been playing around town since she was 8; one of her first big gigs was at the Hard Rock Cafe on McKinney Avenue when she was all of 10. But her music suggests she's just some kiddie commodity, an assembly-line pop star who came from nowhere and expects to be everywhere; it feels as personal as a bottle cap. Cheyenne, a winner of America's Most Talented Kid competition three long years ago, will be famous, because Sony and MTV and Apple won't have it any other way. --Robert Wilonsky