Idol Headlines for 12/21/12 – The Evening Edition

Former Contestant Jason Castro to Host AMERICAN IDOL Viewing Party in NYC, 1/16 – Internationally-renowned recording artist and “American Idol” alum Jason Castro is set to release his Word Entertainment debut album, Only A Mountain, on January 15, 2013. On January 16, fans can join him for “An Evening with Jason Castro Benefitting MusiCares’ Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund” in New York City. The event will include an acoustic set by the singer featuring his new music and a special viewing party for the premiere of the 12th Season of “American Idol” on FOX. At the start of the year, Castro is set to embark on Winter Jam Tour Spectacular, the world’s No. 1 tour (first quarter), alongside headliner TobyMac. – Read more at Broadway World

‘X Factor’s’ Chris Rene and ‘American Idol’s’ Haley Reinhart to Debut on ‘Real Music Live’ – This Saturday night marks the debut of Real Music Live, the creation of executive producer and professional drummer Mike Hill. The show, which features musicians performing on stage while offering insight in taped interview segments, will premiere with a half-hour special following Saturday Night Live.It will feature X Factor alum Chris Rene in its debut and American Idol season 10 finalist Haley Reinhart in its second episode. One thing Hill will not allow in the show: autotune. “They use autotune on a lot of singers, and they can’t sing without it. They can’t sing in key,” Hill said. “I want to get back to where people sound like their records.” – Read more at The Hollywood Reporter

Phillip Phillips: MuchMusic Studio Stop – Phillip Phillips laughs adorably as he’s interviewed for the MuchMusic’s New.Music.Live on Tuesday afternoon (December 18) in Toronto, Canada. The 22-year-old American Idol champ also gave an acoustic performance and planned on signing autographs for his Canadian fans the next day! “Hey Canada! I’ll be at Pickering Town Centre on Dec 19 @ 5:30pm doing an acoustic performance & signing autographs. Hope to see you there!” he tweeted. See the photos at Just Jared

OFFSTAGE: Kellie Pickler Reflects on Rolling Stone Praise – I just got off the phone with Kellie Pickler, who talked about how good it feels to have Rolling Stone magazine put her album 100 Proof at the top of their list of the best country albums of 2012. “It feels good because I feel accepted for being myself. That album is me, so for someone like Rolling Stone to embrace the project just makes me feel like I’m accepted, as well,” she said. “I’m not holding back. So this honor reinforces that I made the right decisions and that I picked the right songs. It’s an honest album. And that might be what they heard — the honesty in the music.” – Read more at CMT News

SHOWBIZ: Popping with jazz – “I am self-taught on the drums and guitar, but I studied the piano and the double bass at the Idyllwild Arts Academy (also in California) with Hawkins. He had played with (jazz sax maestro) Miles Davis and (jazz singer) Shirley Horn,” says Abrams in a phone interview, adding that his self-titled debut album (released recently) features him on several instruments. “When I was in New York, I talked to some of the jazz musicians after the Idol show, and told them about my teacher. This guy says ‘Yeah, I played with him in 1968’. So you know what I mean, he’s the kind of guy everyone knows. It was an honour to have him as a teacher for bass and piano,” says Abrams from Burbank, California. – Read more at New Straits Times

‘X Factor’ Finale Makes No Mention of Melanie Amaro? Says Simon Cowell: ‘It Wasn’t Deliberate’ – So was there one utterance of Melanie Amaro’s name? We asked creator and head judge Simon Cowell, who said with a smirk like he’d just been caught with his hand in the cookie jar, “You know the answer to that … and well-pointed out two hours later.” He then defended the singer, who was a second-chance addition (a la this season’s Diamond White) and his own mentee, adding that the snub “wasn’t deliberate.” Cowell confirmed that winner Tate Stevens is already committed to Sony Nashville and that, as of Jan. 2, he will be working on songs with hit writer John Shanks (Miley Cyrus, Michelle Branch). Unlike Amaro’s as-yet-to-be-released first album, Cowell promised that Stevens’ debut will “happen much, much quicker.” – Read more at The Hollywood Reporter

Who Should Replace L.A. Reid? The X Factor Team Weighs In – L.A.’s pick: “I think Rihanna should fill my spot so I’ll have a reason to watch.” Mario’s pick: “I love Demi and Britney, but if they want to add a female as opposed to getting a man, I’ve been campaigning for my girl Fergie from The Black Eyed Peas. I think she’d be awesome. We’ve been friends a long time and she’s so talented and I think she’d be an awesome judge/mentor. She’s cool and hip and I think the kids would really respond to her and like her.” Simon’s pick: “I’m firing them all. I’m going to be the only judge next year. I’ll just [mentor] the whole lot.” – Read more at TV Guide

Behold The Adorable-ness Of Fifth Harmony Backstage At ‘The X Factor’

A 3-Step Plan To Save Reality Singing Shows From Themselves – Two seasons later, and the airwaves for singing contest have the look of a carpet-bombed no man’s land. Both Idol and X Factor have struggled in the ratings, while rival NBC’s The Voice has happily added to the overkill, staging not one but two seasons this year. A decade ago, American Idol seasons dominated the zeitgeist; their stars were ubiquitous on magazine covers and the airwaves. The Idol finale was briefly neck and neck with the Oscars second only to the Superbowl in national viewing numbers and the singing contest became our national entertainment. But today, it’s very possible to be completely unaware that an Idol, X Factor or Voice finale is in progress. And with ratings on the decline, that problem is only going to get worse. – Read more at Buzz Feed

The X Factor Winner Tate Stevens: This Is Big for Country Music – If anything, Cowell believes Tate’s age, and specifically his heartwarming story of a working father trying to follow his dream, might have helped him win America’s vote. “As much as I like Carly [Rose Sonenclar], I’m looking at them both: One is 13. One is 37, married with kids, and you’re going to give them a check for $5 million,” Cowell said. “My heart said it had to go to him because he needs it more than she does.”
Added Cowell: “When he sang that song at the end and you hear how good his voice is and his story, you could not not root for him. I think America got it right. I think it’s a great end.” – Read more at TV Guide

Tate Stevens: Can Oldest Reality Singing Winner Save ‘X Factor’? – Simon Cowell has known wild success. From his run on “American Idol” when that show ruled the ratings to the global phenomenons of Susan Boyle and One Direction, the music man with the Midas touch is used to coming out on top. But with the second, ratings-challenged season of “X Factor” in the books, the judge’s panel once again up in the air and a newly crowned victor who’s also the oldest winner in major U.S. singing show history (and whose commercial prospects are unknown), the question becomes, “Why hasn’t Cowell been able to make ‘Factor’ click with American audiences?” – Read more at

Simon Cowell LOSES $20,000 Bet to L.A. Reid – Simon Cowell has TWENTY THOUSAND reasons to cry over Thursday night’s “X Factor” results show — and it’s all thanks to a rich-person bet he made with L.A. Reid. TMZ has learned … Simon and L.A. made a wager at the beginning of the season … and if either judge had a contestant win the whole shebang … the losing judge would cough up $20k. So when L.A.’s contestant Tate Stevens took home the crown … he grew just a tiny bit richer than he already is. And since Simon’s no sore loser, we’re told he plans on cutting the check ASAP. – Read more at TMZ

Many Hats of Chris Colfer – Chris Colfer learned as much at the ripe age of 18, when he was cast as the plucky gay countertenor Kurt Hummel on “Glee.” Armed with a golden voice and an uncanny ability to cry on cue (his secret: think of eye injuries), Mr. Colfer became a poster boy for bullying issues and the show’s breakout star. But back in his hometown, Clovis, Calif., things got weird. “People that I went to school with almost acted as if I had died,” Mr. Colfer, now 22, said in a recent interview at the Trump SoHo hotel. Classmates who once treated him like toxic waste were now bragging on Facebook that they had been best of friends. “I thought, Wow, this must be what someone feels like at their eulogy.” – Read more at New York Times

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  • Li Wright

    Has Simon had some type of epiphamy?  Some kind of Awakening?  He LIKES Country?  I guess after the star turn of Carrie U, he would like Country.

  • durbesque

    There’s no S in epiphany, so I can’t work in the $ sign.  I got it….$imon love$ country!

  • tucker davis

    Anyone in the Christmas spirit might like to hear our new judge, Keith Urban,’s rendition of ‘The Christmas Song’. Love, love, love his tone.

  • tripp_ncwy

    Kris (solo) made a surprise appearance at his friends & fellow Arkansans Edens Edge’s Christmas concert in Russeville, AR tonight.  Kris sang cuts from Waiting For Christmas, LLWD and a Christmas duet with Hannah Blaylock from Edens Edge (as song her brother wrote).

  • Leandro
  • girlygirltoo

    Nice surprise! Unfortunately evidently no video allowed at the show, so unless someone was a ninja, we probably won;t get to see this duet

  • jennyl2

    MJ, thanks for posting Chris Colfer’s interview. That was one of the best researched I’ve ever read.

  • jcabby

    Fifth Harmony are freakin’ adorable. These girls have great personalities, which reminds me of One Direction, and great voices. I can see them being successful.

  • Montavilla

    So, the three steps in that Buzzfeed article are:

    1. Downsize the shows from three to one hours per week.

    2. Make them more “reality” than competition.  

    3. Get rid of audience voting.  (According to the author, the judges always make good, decent choices.  The audience, in general, makes terrible ones.)

    This is my reaction.

    1. Good idea.  One hour is maybe too short, but there is definitely fat to be trimmed.  (Especially when he talks about bloated judge salaries.)

    2. I’m sure that if the producers could wring interpersonal drama from their exhausted contestants, they would.  (Look what they tried to do with Lauren Alaina’s sore throat!)

    3. The voting system could be better.  The Voice‘s innovation of taking itunes sales into account has theoretically helped them elect a winner who will move albums next year.  But taking away the right to vote removes 90 percent of the audience’s incentive to watch.  

  • journey1

    I am having such a great night.  One of David A.s fan sites, Fans of David, are putting on a virtual concert on USTREAM.  People have been voting for their favorite videos for several weeks and then FOD put together a concert from David’s actual concerts.  What a great idea!  For those performers who lip sync because they can’t dance and sing at the same time, they need to talk to David and see how he does it.  He manages to jump, twirl, and dance around all over the stage while continuing to sing with no breath issues or wobbling of his voice.  His concerts are so much fun!

  • lovesickheroine

    I just saw Chris Colfer’s movie Struck By Lightning. It’s a great film, its funny and poignant. I like the fact that majority of the cast members are tv actors.

  • B

    Always nice to hear good things happening for Jason Castro – good guy with a lovely voice.

  • Nadine_Bitch

    shoshanna stoneþ@shoshannastone
    Not sure what was most exciting; Gigwise calling Queen & Adam ‘best live act’, Classic Rock calling it a moment of the year, or the reviews!

    I’d say ALL OF THE ABOVE! :)and this is an awesome vid, with an awesome voice with an awesome band.

    ETA: Adam Lambert, Carrie Underwood, or Taylor Swift: Who Had The Best Album of 2012?

  • loveroftalent

    Thanks for posting…When I first watched this video…I sat there with my mouth open.  What a jaw dropping moment…I think this was the most amazing and emotional performance I have ever seen…It must have been incredible to have witnessed it live…I read about fans of Queen with tears in the eyes during it…

  • Nadine_Bitch

    The YT uploader is definetly not a glambert. He’s a metal/rock fan:)

  • HKfan

    I went to 2 of the London Queen/Adam Lambert shows, the most amazing atmosphere of any concert I have ever been to. The emotion, energy and friendliness of the crowd was like nothing I’ve experienced before, not to mention the music and the singing, the love and respect Adam, Roger and Brian had for each other was palpable. And hearing him sing WWTLF live, I think that was the moment most of the Queen fans really got behind him, everyone startes singing along, then stopped when they realised what they were hearing, indeed there were people with tears in their eyes…..

  • MellyPer1692

    Cassadee Pope on Leno…Is that Allison Iraheta doing backup vocals?

  • sabbia

    The Real Music Live show sounds right up my alley! I love music shows that introduce lesser known artists. 

    Unfortunately, it is not being shown on my local NBC station which is surprising being that it is a NYC affiliate. (some show called LX.TV: 1st Look NY is being aired in that time slot). Wonder why?

  • Anny_nanny

    About “A 3-Step Plan To Save Reality Singing Shows From Themselves”:

    I thought it was funny barely author said that he was a fan of The X-Factor. We have a saying: “when you spit in the back, you’re ahead”, AI must remember this – let them first be able to catch up and look in the face.
    The X-Factor itself is destroying itself by its format and a set of judges, it is a show of stillbirth from the tyranny of Simon, but I wish good luck to the country-guy that won this season. The Voice – it’s all about judges and somewhere in the distance the contestants, which quietly forget as soon as they go out ” I’m sorry, but I was able to watch the rest of their girl only hoping to see Alison. The only AI remains the show “about the contestants and the embodiment of dreams”.
    Yes, you can make more reality show, but then the children should have the right to open your mouth to the sound recording of the concert, as most of the invited “stars”. But I’m ready to come back to this conversation, as soon as someone from competitors will be able to get two “platinum” graduates on their show.
    Good luck, guys!

  • Miz

    ‘One thing Hill will not allow in the show: autotune. “They use autotune on a lot of singers, and they can’t sing without it. They can’t sing in key,” Hill said. “I want to get back to where people sound like their records.” ‘

    This sounds like a great show. I hope it takes off. It seems like it’s geared for the night owl ‘just home from the bar/club’ crowd and college age.

    I have to laugh at the above quote though. Records today are auto-tuned to death. So to sound like their records, it’s going to take auto-tune for a lot to reach that goal. I hope they choose their guests based on how they sound live without it, instead of from the recordings.

  • Miz

    I was surprised when I saw some tweets about Kris performing last night – including a pic from Kris’ brother about having to sit in the nosebleed seats to see him.

     I had to look up ‘Edens Edge’. At first I thought it was one of those religious things. Turns out they are an up and coming Country act charting, and touring with some big names.

  • Miz

    I watched the video you linked. The girl does resemble Allison, but she is much too tall to be her.

  • girlygirltoo

    I saw on twitter that Hannah Blaylock from Edens Edge simply called Kris up and asked him to perform at their show. They’ve known each other for several years, I guess.

  • Miz

    I saw that too. How cool it was that mzbet went to the concert to see Edens Edge and got surprised with a Kris performance. :)

    It looks like a nice sized venue. Kris is playing there in April.

  • milwlovesadam

     Thank you so much for your post. The first time I saw Adam sing this with Queen from the Kiev livestream, I had a “moment” of what was likely the strongest visceral reaction to a song/singer/performance I have ever felt. It was an “experience.”

    This video is one of my favorites of all of Adam’s, and, of all the music I have ever seen or heard in my life.

    Is this pure fan hyperbole? No. This is coming from a music lover. And an entertainment lover.

  • MellyPer1692

    She doesn’t look too tall to me. According to her fan site twitter, it was her.

  • Valarie

    Allison backing Cassadee is like a Ferrari backing a Yugo. It’s just wrong.

  • Bobbi

    Congratulations to Kellie Pickler for the acknowlegement by Rolling Stone regarding just how good her album, 100 Proof, is. It is such a shame that her record company didn’t back it. She definitely deserved it. Here’s hoping her new label will do right by her! 

  • girlygirltoo

    IKR? I hope he is picking artists who didn’t have to be auto tuned (much anyway; there probably aren’t too many artists who put out albums with zero auto tuning on it) on their actual albums. 

    Because I work early mornings on Sundays, I need sleep over staying up to watch tv :)  But I might DVR this when Haley’s on, just to check it out. It sounds like it could be good

  • girlygirltoo

    Another new gig on Kris’ “Out Alive” tour has popped up: February 1, 2013 at Plush, in Tucson, AZ

    I’m counting 45 dates on this tour so far (not including Danny’s charity cruise in late Feb.)

  • milwlovesadam

    Allison Iraheta backing Cassadee? Is it April Fool’s Day? Is this for real? Or a practical joke? Alison has more talent in her little toe than this new winner of the voice has in sum total.

    I hope this isn’t true. It doesn’t really look like her, kinda, but, oh noes…

    She was so awesome when she opened for Adam during GlamNation. Love her.

  • tripp_ncwy
  • Happyhexer

    Girlygirltoo, is there a link somewhere that shows Kris’ tour dates?  I’d be interested.

    In all likelihood I will see Kris on the cruise, but if he appears on tour at a venue reasonably near me, I might like to attend that as well.

    Don’t take this the wrong way, but I am a big fan of Kris Allen Era #2.  I wish him all the success in the world.  (Not that I didn’t wish him the best before, but I wasn’t personally invested in his music from Era #1.)

    Now I want to shout from the rooftops (pun intended) about his new CD TYC and how good it is! 

  • girlygirltoo

    Yeah, you can find his tour dates on his facebook (on the events page) HERE:

    there’s also a tour schedule for him on his booking agent’s site, HERE:

  • Happyhexer

     Thanks, Girlygirltoo! I will bookmark those links.

  • Happyhexer

    Looks like there will be a Kris concert near me.  I think I saw this before, but I hadn’t made a note of it.  I’m so dense!

  • Ratna12

    I love that Kris has converted you for era #2, hopefully it will stick :)
    Wow, that you will go to the cruise.
    I hope that people will click to that tour schedule of Kris’ because he will go all over the US, give Kris a try, he may convert you to be a fan or somewhat fan.
    Kris is so good on CD, but especially live, …I’m extremely biased though :)

  • Happyhexer

    If I go and if I’m in a decent location (I’m short) and if my camera and I are on speaking terms, I will try to get some video of Kris performing.

    Definitely a convert for Era #2, and I’m looking forward to Era #3.  TYC is a seriously good album and I’m anxiously anticipating new music of equal or better quality.

    But in the interim, does anybody know whether Kris sells his CDs on his tour stops?  I certainly hope so.  TYC deserves to be heard, and that may be the only way to get the album out there, post-RCA.

  • Ratna12

    Yay, thank you.
    I heard that Kris had CD and merc at least on one of his tour stop ( I forgot which one) but, I’m not sure if he has them at all the stops.
    Of course we don’t know about it unless somebody twitted about it.
    Yeah, I don’t know if Kris can release a new single after he left RCA, kind of sad since TYC is full of single potential IMO ( Better With You )

    I know several people from twitter that will go to the cruise, you’ll have fun and hopefully make new friends.

  • Axxxel

    yeah, really interesting for non-glee fan readers :-)

  • Axxxel

    My favorite Adam Lambert moments in 2012 were 1.Broken English Live in the Vineyard 11/3/12   

    2. Trespassing on the Voice of China…

    The funny thing is, I don’t really like both above songs but when I see Adam perform them, I just melt.

    3. As for Queenbert… it will be the “the show must go on” on the 2nd day of the London concerts. 

     @milwlovesadam I cannot see the video in your posting because when I click the link, it just brings me to the homepage of youtube. So which song and in which occasion are you referring to ?