American Idol Live 2018 Tour Complete Set List with VIDEOS

American Idol Live 2018

The American Idol Live! show kicked off in Redding, California on Wednesday (July 11) moved on to Central Point, Oregon on Thursday (July 12) and are set to perform in Napa, California on Friday (July 13). It took a couple of days, but we finally have a tentative set list (performance order not confirmed). A big thanks to the folks at Kris Allen Lists for putting together all the songs! I added a few more that I found online.

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The 2018 American Idol Live tour features the Top 7 which includes Maddie Poppe (winner), Caleb Lee Hutchinson (runner-up), Gabby Barrett (2nd runner up), fifth place finalists Cade Foehner and Michael J Woodard and seventh place finalists Jurnee and Catie Turner.

Season 8 winner Kris Allen is part of the show as a featured performer, while In Real Life (winners of the ABC summer competition Boy Band) will be appearing on select dates.

The set list is mostly made up of fan favorite songs from the show, with a few new covers. Kris performs his latest single, “When All the Stars Have Died” in addition to “Heartless,” the Kanye West cover which served as HIS breakout moment on the show way back in 2009.

There aren’t a ton of videos floating around, but I have added the vids that are currently available. One big drawback–like the season 13 tour, other than the instruments the singers play, there is no backing band.

I’ll pin this post to the sidebar. Watch for updates.

Pre-Show VIP group number

  • All Night Long by Lionel Richie

Pre-Show Kris Performance

Opening Act: In Real Life

  • Tonight Belongs to You
  • Eyes Closed
  • Tattoo (How b’out You)

Opening group number

  • Meant to Be by Florida Georgia Line and Bebe Rexha – VIDEO

Jurnee (7th place)

  • Never Enough from The Greatest Showman – VIDEO

Catie Turner 

  • Part of Me by Katy Perry – VIDEO
  • Havana by Camila Cabello (with Gabby and Jurnee)

Group number:  Michael Woodward, Catie and  Gabby Barrett 

  • Titanium by Sia 

Group number: Jurnee, Michael and Gabby

  • Bang Bang by Ariana Grande and Jessie J.

Gabby Barrett

  • Red Wagon by Miranda Lambert
  • Church Bells by Carrie Underwood
  • Don’t Stop Believing by Journey

Group number feat Gabby and rest of Top 7

  • My Church by Maren Morris

Group number: Gabby, Cade Foehner, Jurnee and Catie

  • How Come You Don’t Call Me Anymore by Prince – VIDEO

Maddie Poppe 

  • Brand New Key by Melanie – Catie bangs a tambourine for this and rest of contestants are out with her.

Caleb Lee Hutchison

  • Like a Wrecking Ball by Eric Church – backed by Kris on guitar (and also Cade)
  • Don’t Close Your Eyes by Keith Whitley – VIDEO
  • Folsom Prison Blues by Johnny Cash – backed by Kris and Michael

Cade Foehner

  • No Good by Kaleo
  • The Thrill is Gone by BB King

Cade and Gabby

    Never Tear Us Apart by INXS

Kris Allen

  • Idol Medley: Falling Slowly by Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova/Ain’t No Sunshine by Bill Withers/Heartless by Kanye West
  • When All the Stars Have Died
  • Live Like We’re Dying 

Michael Woodward

  • My Heart Will Go On by Celine Dion
  • Maybe This Time from Cabaret and Beauty and the Beast (with Gabby and Catie) – VIDEO

Duet: Caleb and Maddie

  • You’ve Got a Friend by James Taylor – VIDEO

Maddie Poppe

  • God Only Knows by Beach Boys
  • Going Going Gone – VIDEO
  • Rainbow Connection – by Kermit the Frog – with Kris and Caleb backing her – VIDEO

Group closing number – Kris and the Top 7

  • There’s Nothing Holding Me Back by Shawn Mendes – VIDEO

About mj santilli 33680 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!


  1. Very nice…appreciate having the information pulled together in one place…I will check out the music, for sure! :)

  2. you forgot to add cade’s and gabby’s duet of never tear us apart. now i’d love to watch a video of that!

  3. Okay, not enough Caleb. I hope he gets signed so I get an album! :)

  4. It does seem weird that he has few solos but he seems to be on stage quite a bit playing guitar and singing backup, in one of the Cade songs he and Kris sing backup.

  5. Solos:
    Finished in
    1. Maddie 3
    2. Caleb 2
    3. Gabby 3
    4. Cade 2
    5. Michael 2
    6. Catie 1
    7. Jurnee 1

    Kris 4

  6. Am I reading this correctly, there’s no backing band, just the few Idols who play guitar as the only musical instruments? And no backing tracks of any kind either? (I haven’t watched any videos yet).

    That certainly doesn’t help shake the H.S. talent show feel the overall season had, and now the tour. That’s a real shame.

  7. *No Band* is what I also read elsewhere…Kris and Cade are the accompanists? It all sounds pretty low-rent. But if that’s the way Disney wants to roll, well, anybody can use a click track – I hope they plug in some percussion so they can have a backbeat where necessary. Just a disinterested opinion…I won’t be attending, so it’s not a deal breaker for me, either way. :-|

  8. No back up band? I find that sad. Now I understand why Kris is playing accompaniment.
    He should have brought Cale, Andrew and the rest of KAB along to help out.

  9. Low-rent is a good description.
    The cynic in me wonders if this was a cheap tour plan all along and could have played into the producer’s selection of the final group before live voting. Cade makes perfect casting sense now. Not a great voice but decent guitarist skills. Also making sure enough guitarists were put through overall into a potential top 10?
    Yeah, I have no interest in going either.

  10. Let us know how it was. Maybe it’s better than it looks so far. Hopefully.

  11. Evidently Kris does a medley that includes Heartless, Falling Slowly and House of the Rising Sun. He also does LLWD, his new single and the Shawn Mendes song (the latter being the closing group number). From the tweets I haven’t figured out if LLWD is part of the medley or a separate song

  12. Cool — I missed that. I’d be happier with a band, for sure.

  13. It does sound like treating the contestants on the cheap is continuing. Would three musicians cost that much? On the up side they are a talented group and can likely carrying it off.

  14. That certainly doesn’t help shake the H.S. talent show feel the overall season had, and now the tour. That’s a real shame.

    Well, the ratings actually went up during the live shows, so that shows that many people disagree with you. Yes, the live voting had a lot to do with it, but if people were truly disinterested, the ratings wouldn’t have risen, even with the power voting.

    Also, this is a good sign in terms of tour attendance:

    Linda Parish? @krismicklin
    Jul 12
    Looks like there are only 28 tickets left for the American Idol Live show in Napa on Friday night! Let’s make this a sold out show! @idollivetour @KrisAllen

    Joan Bauer? @joanieL57
    Jul 12
    Replying to @krismicklin @idollivetour @KrisAllen
    Most are resale,so they were sold.Only 4 single tickets were not sold.

  15. And you seem to take my posts personal, why?
    It’s just a TV show, lol.

  16. My point is “H.S. talent show feel” makes it sound like people didn’t like it. Ratings stayed stable which means people generally liked the talent. If people truly thought it was “high school talent show” then the ratings would had dropped, just like they did in less than stellar seasons.

  17. We think he sang Ain’t No Sunshine, not House of the Rising Sun.

    The girl who tweeted Kris’s songs earlier said Heartbreaker instead of Heartless.

  18. Again, it’s JMO, I’m not speaking about anyone else’s opinion of the season. To me it had a very H.S. level feel with all the young contestants and their lack of experience. Others may feel differently. Not sure why this bothers you so much. But whatever.

  19. I guess they must have thought it was more important to fill seats adding Kris to the show because they could have hired an entire band for less than what they have to pay Kris.

  20. “No band” is sure what the videos look like.

    By using some of the Idols to accompany one another on guitar, TPTB have addressed the “no instrument players to interact with” problem that made the S13 tour so frustrating to watch, so I’m trying to be open-minded.

    Since I already bought a ticket, open-minded is going to have to do. I’m leaning toward thinking that in terms of musical interests, what the Idol tour can realistically offer is kinda not-me (I’m certainly not the target audience), so we’ll call my going this year an exercise in anthropology.

  21. He did, but after he shattered his wrist in that car accident 5 years ago, I giuess it’s not something he really does anymore. He lost like 80% of the flexibility in his wrist and I guess that affected his ability to play the keyboards.

  22. The venues are mainly in the 2000-2500 capacity range. Unless someone who is actuall at one of the shows speak up, we won’t get any attendance figures unless they get reported to Poll Star/Nillboard

  23. Mesa is July 24, so someone may have stories before then. But I will report my impressions. Bear in mind I genuinely would like this to succeed, so while I suspect I won’t be gushing about how it’s the most perfect concert ever, I’m going to tend to make the best of it. (The prospect of Thai beer beforehand doesn’t hurt — very good Thai restaurant in downtown Mesa.)

  24. We have no idea what they are paying Kris, though. So we don’t know if that would be true.

  25. But if they have day jobs, those musicians just can’t up and leave for a 2+ month tour. They would have to hire people who actually make their living as musicians. And summertime is a very busy time for musicians — it might not be as easy as you think to find a band who i available on short notice. Especially one that could play the variety of styles of music they do on this tour.

  26. yeah, but she meant Heartless. I saw she later corrected the HOTRS to ANS, as well

  27. He would have had to pay them. Because whoever is in charge of financing this tour wouldn’t have done so.

  28. It would still be taking money out of his pocket. They aren’t going to pay him (for example) $2K per show and then pay the other guys in his band an additional $2K per show. Instead, they might give him $3K but he’d have to split that in some manner with the others in the band. Which would likely result in him getting less $ per show himself than he would if he just toured without the guys.

  29. They could have hired teens (same sort of ages as the contestants) that study music/play instruments/perform for little money, but would have jumped at the chance for the experience to play this tour…

  30. True, and I guess Maddie is too…since she is a WLWG. But they aren’t expecting much blending from Cade’s vocals…so I see him playing accompaniment more…and Kris and Michael’s vocals can be more universal than either Cade or Caleb’s.

    It doesn’t sound like this tour runs to a piano, but maybe a keyboard? Doesn’t someone play keyboards besides Maddie? I see they have nominated Catie for the Tamborine, but that is stretching the concept of percussion, I think. JMO.

    If they picked the songs well, based on what they have to work with, it all could be just fine.

  31. Someone is also playing keyboards as you can see them at stage right during some of the songs. At first I thought it was Michael Orland but they seem younger than that and the also seem to be playing guitar in one of the videos.

  32. Wish they weren’t doing the opening act. In Real Life is not doing all tour dates, right? Idol fans want to see Idols, not sit through three songs from the show Boy Band.

    ETA: Hoping that the tour is very successful.

  33. Like I said when the tour was announced months ago, it sounds messy. And from what I’ve been reading it sure does sound messy. I’m seriously glad I had no intentions in going. Like seriously no backing band? Or at least backing tracks?

  34. There are thousands of solid unknown bands all over the country, and a big majority of them have to have a day job to live.They can find a really good band for a small fee and all living and traveling expenses.

  35. Hoping that Kris and the rest of the crew get more time on stage during the final shows and the shows without In Real Life opening.

    Logic would seem that they would have more songs for the non In Real Life shows right?

    Apparently VIP is all that’s left for Munhall AKA Pittsburgh. According to Carnegie Library’s Facebook page. :O

  36. the list above is not in order. here is one more video to add:
    so far my fav part. except the keys were too loud on the first song and there is an extra guitarist for the second song. it would have sound better with a complete live band.

  37. Right. I knew that – but the reports always seemed focused on his guitar playing. But yeah, that would impact the piano as much or more.

    (Sidenote: Years ago, my husband shattered the middle finger of his left hand in a waterslide mishap (wedding ring caught on something and …. He gave up playing his guitar because he can’t bend the finger to press the strings. )

  38. Considering the pay is not the factor, there is also living expenses, insurance and travel arrangements that come into play.

  39. It all sounds pretty low-rent.

    Taking eight performers (and also sometimes the opening act boyband) plus whatever live musicians they have plus assorted support staff on the road is an expensive undertaking. Now that venues are in the 1000-2500 cap range, “low rent” is what we’re going to get.

    The only major question on the table is whether the decisions made to meet the budget lead to an enjoyable show. In S14, the tour afforded a band by limiting the Idols to top 5, and the Idol bubble hated that decision (with some reason, since the 6-10 spots had interesting and unusual performers). It was always unlikely that TPTB were going to find budget for top 7 plus Kris Allen and a full band.

  40. Does the tour have a sponsor? Either a big sponsor whose name goes on everything, or a few small sponsors who get some signage during the M&G pictures, etc?

  41. According to a couple of Kris fans who were at the Napa show, security was out in full fore in terms of not letting people take vids. Which is why the songs I’ve seen posted are pretty much audio only

  42. If they were going to hire anyone, it should be professional musicians. Not students who may or may not know what they are doing.

  43. that’s a shame. I hope your husband found something else to do that he enjoyed as much as playing the guitar

  44. This looks so second-rate, and a bit sad. I was looking online at the NY venue (a place I never heard of) and it is a former movie theater! I remember when the Idols would pack the Nassau Coliseum for two consecutive nights.

  45. Hmm. At the venue where I will be seeing the Idol Tour, people have traditionally been allowed to video the concert acts. I have taken pics and vids, when I have been able to see over the tall people standing in front of me. Even being in the second or third row hasn’t helped, but this time I got front-row seats. They may change things up for the Idol Tour, but people are not going to be happy. And I don’t see the point. I don’t think concerts sell any better when video is restricted, but who knows?

  46. Agreed. What’s the point, if they are not hiring pros? In terms of road experience, adaptability to multiple genres, and learning on the spot to play or to arrange music for disparate voices and styles, why would “teens the same sort of age as the contestants” be expected to do any better than the Idols doing it themselves? That does not compute, for me.

  47. I just watched the Jurnee video. There is either a backing track or the Idols back stage are whipping together a symphony of instruments. Maybe some songs just have Idols on instrument and others have backing bands.

    Jurnee sounds much more comfortable without the stress of competition.

  48. He sounds good. As I was looking for other videos I found that he did this same medley 5 years ago, lol.

  49. Unfortunately not. Frustrating because we used to sing a lot and we kinda stopped. At least he can use a computer keyboard okay to do work stuff and so forth. :)

  50. oh he has performed this type of medley at lots of his shows over the years. There are always people at the shows who want to hear the stuff he did on Idol. This arrangement seems slightly different from what he’s done in the past though

  51. They could have gotten away with just hiring 3 musicians to back up the Top 7. One person to play bass, one on drums and one person who could play both lead guitar and keyboards. They could also program tracks into a keyboard and have one of the Idols who isn’t actually performing the number just stand behind the keyboard and trigger the tracks.

    Imean no one should expect a spectacular production on the lines of a Beyonce concert or a Queen concert or something like that. But it just seems really cheap of the producers to not hire a few musicians to help the Top 7 out. It can’t think that hiring 3 musicians would be so expensive that they couldn’t afford it

  52. The travel and living expenses shouldn’t be all that much. They are likely going to be living on the bus most of the time, with the occasional hotel stop. Go rent one more bus, stick the musicians on that and voila, problem solved. Yes, it would be more expensive, but I doubt that it would break the producers financially to do this.

  53. That was actually the only sliver of an excuse I could come up with for this skimping…the buses were at capacity, so they would need another for some band members? Really. That’s gonna break them just like a Top 10 would have destroyed their finances, I suppose.

    Who’s nickel is this on, anyway? Whoever is hoping to profit from this tour is the same entity who is not willing to fully support it, musically and artistically speaking. Even with down-sized venues…Idol ought to have some quality standards. …very shortsighted, IMO.

  54. well instead of bringing along that opening act (who Disney probably could have booked as an opener on another tour) they could have used the money they saved by not having IRL on tour to hire a backing band

  55. They’re hoping the opening act will attract young fans and thus sell tickets.

    Band versus no-band is unlikely to make any difference in ticket sales. Superfans for specific Idols care about seeing their Idol. If the tour comes near them and they can afford tickets, they’re not going to wait for some hypothetical future in which their Idol tours alone, nor are they going to decide to skip it if there’s no live band — they will show up. (They may never show up again, but the season is still fresh.)

    (Heck, I’m strongly pro-band after the frustrations of the S13 show, and I bought my ticket for the S14 tour without caring in the slightest what the format was, as… got to see my Idol.)

  56. At least to the audience it doesn’t seem to matter nd I can’t say that I have ever gone tp a concert and cared about the backup band.

  57. They will most likely fill the 1000-2000 seat venues with no problem. Even some of the larger ones depending on where they are. The one at the Uptown Theatre in Napa last night holds just over 800 so I’m sure they sold that one out. But with the smaller venues they won’t make as much on the Idol tours as they did when they were filling arenas. So the contestants may not be making as much as contestants did in the past. But the experience should be good for them. I just wish they had a band and not so many group performances. It makes it seem less like a concert and showcase and makes them so dependent on each other, imo. Some probably still need that security blanket but I think others are ready to step out now. So while this concept is not too appealing or interesting to me, I do wish them well and hope they enjoy the experience.

  58. But the musician scale rate (min) would have to be paid for someone that the audience either doesn’t notice nor cares about. All of these involved in the tour are doing it for the experience, come September they are all free to hire as many musicians as they want to go on the road with them, but fr most they are used to playing backup for themselves.

    As for hiring another bus, that also involves hiring a driver and if I remember correctly the bus alone was $1000+/day.

  59. It is possible the extra people on tour played a part in them not having a backing band and in the exclusion of 3 of the top 10. But maybe they did not think the demand would be big enough to put more into it anyway. I guess we will never know for sure what went into their decisions. They will just have to make the best of the opportunities at hand.

  60. If I were going to make an argument for restricting videos (which I’m generally opposed to), it’d include some or all of the following:

    –Control of the quality of material distributed (which assumes the most popular fan videos are crappy qualify, and my experience as a consumer of them is that most aren’t that bad these days, though of course as soon as I say that, people find some doozies).
    –Act has plans to distribute an “official” live video of professional quality. (Legit point, if someone’s spending money to make it, it shouldn’t compete with random stuff. This is why I didn’t even try video at a show I went to this past week — the band was livestreaming.)
    –Venue has qualities that make fan video a bad idea (venue knows better than any fan what is and isn’t a good idea in their space).
    –Audience participation in the show is considered very important by the performers. (Legit but I can’t see why it would apply here.)
    –Act isn’t confident that video won’t embarrass them by showing they’re not all that good. (Snarky of me, but I see a lot of the bottom tier of the local music scene, so I’m not ruling it out.)

    A good video should make fans who can buy tickets more excited about doing so.

  61. Gabby and Cade sound and look so good together. They show passion and confidence with their performance styles. A winning combination for me.

  62. No wonder someone mentioned the Napa show didn’t have many tickets left. Between the current Idols and Kris, they should easily sell out that venue. Wasn’t there another venue where someone posted the only tickets left were VIP? In most concerts, the VIP tickets are the first to sell out, and for smaller venues, there would be fewer of them.

  63. Idol has never had tours on the level of Beyonce or Queen so no one thinks that. But Idol tours have been much better than this but they have also been in more demand. You are talking 9 acts (one of them with several members) plus a band in venues that are nothing like they were in the past. So Idol now is unlikely to put in more money for this tour than they can make back.

  64. Haven’t they had about 3-4 concerts? I can’t believe no one has posted any reviews.

  65. They’ve had three shows: (1) Redding, CA; (2) Jackson County Fair in OR; (3) Napa, CA. Tonight is dark, as is tomorrow. Smaller newspapers don’t do a lot of entertainment reviewing these days: the Redding paper promoted the show but didn’t review it; the newspaper I can find for Oregon is downright minimal; and the Napa newspaper doesn’t seem to have covered the show at all, preferring to focus on more locally grown arts.

    After that is Denver, Grand Prairie, San Antonio, McAllen, and Tucson. They get to my turf in AZ on July 24.

  66. Kris’ fans don’t tend to write reviews. They are more likely to just post pics with him or post vids of his songs.

    I wouldn’t expect to see any reviews in a newspaper. I don’t remember seeing any from the last Idol tour.

    So many newspapers have gone out of business or cut way back on their staff. And those reporters are likely covering local news, sports, politics and crime.

  67. There’s really not much reason to review a show that is only going to be in town for a single performance. It’s not going to help people decide whether to go, like a movie review or a touring Broadway show that will be at the theatre for another 2 weeks.

  68. Groan. One of the first things I like to see is the set list, then go on youtube to check the performances. Granted, some of the smaller venues don’t like you to record. I almost got kicked out of a show because I took pictures in the beginning then started recording my favorite song from this band.

  69. I guess I’m used to Adam fans posting reviews after every concert. However, I haven’t seen Adam in a solo concert in the US in forever, but I thought he got reviews after every show (but like I mentioned that’s been some time ago).

  70. I doubt there will be many reviews of the Idol tour. But if some do happen, I’m sure someone will post them. I think the days of them getting coverage at every tour stop are long over.

  71. Most fan reviews seem to consist of “so-and-so did amazing”. I doubt that would be very useful anyway.

  72. Most fan reviews seem to consist of “so-and-so did amazing”. I doubt that would be very useful anyway.

  73. If they are a big name, maybe. Very few unknown artists get reviewed

  74. I checked again into the ticket sale for the venue that I was going to attend, and they’ve sold right at 900 tickets with around 200 not yet sold.

  75. Getting a set list is great. But how many fan reviews ever get really critical? More often than not, it’s “artist x looked and sounded amazing” on every song.

  76. Lots of acts do still get reviewed. I think basically it has to do with interest in the show/act, plain and simple. QR plays most of their shows in the same 1000-2500 range and they get local show reviews about half of the time (I post a lot of them here).

    For example, one of their last most recent shows in Long Island at a medium size venue was reviewed by 2 separate reviewers for 2 different publications.

  77. We might see a review or two when they play Los Angeles or New York. That’s where the people who used to review the Idol tour stilllive/work, so maybe some of them will show up

  78. Oh, Markos. Yes, he’ll show up for anything Idol-related and love it even more gushingly than the normal superfans do.

  79. lol. Yeah, digital journal stuff is a step above a fan review, I agree. But the other one Royal Flush Magazine is a actual hard copy magazine as well as an online one. No idol connection there at all. lol.

    And as for smaller town newspapers, QR’s show the week before at the end of June made the front page in Johnstown, PA.
    My point, if the interest in the subject is there, they will sometimes still get covered. That’s all I’m saying.

  80. Adam fans still write long reviews. They throw in about the amazing vocals, but I like all the other details, even making comments about people around them. I like to read about the glitches and the silliness on stage, etc.

  81. It doesn’t look like these Idols have interviews at every stop either. Makes their touring less grueling.

  82. How is it going to hurt him, he gets to play in front of a crowd that may not know him and gets paid, pretty much what he does on his own?

  83. I was talking about actual reviews and not fan reviews. There’s a different conversation about fan reviews, which I added that Adam fans write detailed reviews on his fan sites. I also mentioned Kris fans attending this concert and hoping to see a detailed set list.

  84. It won’t necessarily hurt him. I guess a gig is a gig but I would prefer Kris or any past Idol to stick to touring with other established acts. These kids are amateurs. Kris is not. I guess maybe he sees himself as being the more experience one and there for them if they need help or guidance. I can understand that but I’m not digging the whole idea to be honest.

  85. It’s possible they could be paying Kris $5K per show. Of course, if he was on his solo tour making that, he’d have a lot more expenses.

  86. Yep. The Idol tour payments and the advances decreased substantially when they moved from Sony to Interscope. I remember reading about that here cause there was a big difference. It may have gone down even more when they moved to Big Machine. Probably down even more now. But my guess is Kris would not have taken the job unless he was satisfied with his compensation.

  87. Help me out. Maybe I’m missing something but why are you putting Kris on the same level as Maddie. No, Kris is not a star but he’s way more established than the top 7. If we are being honest most of them will be nobodies in a few months time. I’m not even a huge fan of Kris but selling him short is crazy. But anytime his fans can get to see him perform is always a good thing.

  88. I was really hoping that some remnants of the *Idol is Back!* buzz might lead to curiosity, and result in media reviews that we may otherwise not have gotten…since there was a precipitous drop-off in any papers reviewing Idol tour shows in the waning seasons of OG Idol….and everybody more or less got out of the habit.

    Only three stops in, it is hard to say yet if my cautious optimism is misplaced – – or not. :)

  89. Why would the label affiliation determine the tour payments? On this tour, only 1/7 singers is signed to “the label”. The tour obligation comes from the Idol contract, not the label contract.

  90. If these smaller towns’ newspapers don’t review concerts, you would think these towns or nearby bigger cities have on-line entertainment sites. Aren’t they interested in American Idol anymore? At least with Kris added, there should be some interest.

    We haven’t even had any fan reviews. I thought Kris fans had been to some of the first concerts.

  91. I don’t see how this is selling him short. He’s getting the opportunity to tour venues that I gather are somewhat larger than those he usually plays on his own, at a guaranteed rate of payment, without incurring any of the expenses of touring, for an audience that is probably more likely than most to have heard of him and have at least some interest in listening to him. Why he would merit $250k or more, a private bus and better hotel accommodations is completely beyond me. It isn’t like his presence is generating lots of buzz and allowing the tour to play significantly larger venues. One earns big money for helping to generate big money, not as a reward for sticking it out in the business for almost 10 years.

  92. Small towns generally don’t have well-established, well-staffed “entertainment” web sites that can send out a reviewer to all sorts of shows. I’ve spent much of the past year scouring small towns for their entertainment sites and social media, and the number of times the best thing going has turned out to be a Twitter or FB account that shared event promotion until, oh, some time in 2015 outnumber the occasions when I’ve found anything useful. Even the halfway decent local-event-promo things seldom or never print reviews of anything other than restaurants. A show will get a listing in the event calendar but not a review.

    As far as nearby bigger cities, the San Francisco Chronicle (sfgate) is not going to review an American Idol tour stop in Napa. There’s way too much culture in the city itself. Redding’s at the back end of beyond, too far from Sacramento for the Bee (sacbee) to bother. Similarly, the only things in Jackson County that Portland might care about are the Shakespeare Festival and maybe crime.

    ETA: Fan reviews don’t seem as popular as they were in the old days. People post giddy stuff to their FB accounts and call it done. I miss fan reviews so much!

  93. The Napa paper also had a small promotion piece before the tour. But they had a picture of Adam and listed a few of his accomplishments (while complaining about him not winning,lol) before they went on to talk about the upcoming show. They did seemed to be looking forward to Cade tho.

  94. No, they don’t get reviewed. Not in small towns, not in big cities.

    Where I live in Phoenix, there are tons of music performances every night. The vast majority will never be reviewed by any publication — not the Republic (azcentral), not the alternative weekly, not anything that passes as a local entertainment blog.

    The American Idols Live! tour is not the equivalent of a big star performance that requires lots of coverage. It’s playing venues in the 1000-2500 cap range. Those tend not to get reviews. To be blunt, the Idol tour is no longer a big deal and not culturally important, and because it’s all cover songs, no serious music critic outside the Idol bubble is going to be eager to attend it. (ETA: If there’s a stop near Lehigh Valley, tho, the local music reviewer may show up to savage it.)

  95. Not in small towns. Maybe if the concert is a happening, that people have been anticipating for months, like if Taylor Swift booked a tour of smaller venues to “get back to her roots”. Or if the performer grew up in the area. I’m sure the show in Munhall, PA will get reviewed because it’s Gabby’s hometown.

  96. Some fan reviews are really detailed with set lists and all. It’s always interesting to read some BTS stuff too.

  97. In the good old days, fan reviews talked about the details of the performance — all sorts of stuff with audience interaction, subtle changes in the show, instrumentation on the songs, what the experience was like. The ones posted on DCO were awesome (and I’m not saying that because I wrote any — I think I did maybe one, for the 2010 non-Idol show at the Morongo Casino).

    Social media has flattened fan discussion into accompanying a photo or video clip with a sentence or two raving about how great the show was, plus appropriate tagging. I have mixed feelings about that because I like detail — at the same time, the current norm is easier to do, so ideally, more fans will share content.

  98. Adam got a good number of reviews for his solo concerts but certainly not at every stop. And not on the level of his Queen tour reviews. But Idol tours have not been of major interest to most in a long time.

  99. I think Digitaljournal is a fan driven site but no one really takes that seriously. That would be like me writing a review for Adam’s show and posting it there, lol.

  100. No idea, and I interacted with them far enough apart in time that it hadn’t occurred to me.

  101. The Idols are not professionals….at least they weren’t up until a month or 2 ago….Just saying there are a lot of musicians out there, the same sort of age, just trying to start out on their careers with as much talent as the Idols, that would jump at the chance….wasn’t Ed Sheeran still busking at that age..and hes an amazing musician!!

  102. I must be the only one who feels Kris should have said NO to this low budget mess. For an Idol winner 9 years into his career to go back on an Idol tour with a bunch of nobodies I feel is a step back. I have no idea what they offered him but I hope it was something he couldn’t refuse. Kris and Adam each got paid 250K for their Idol tour so JMO he should be getting at least that and yes he should also be getting the VIP treatment. I know it’s unlike Kris to expect special treatment but screw that. Know your worth. He should have his own VIP tour bus and be put up in nice hotels. Gosh, I wish I was his management. Let me slap them.

  103. But what fans write is not the same as a review by a publication. It is just fans writing about a concert they attended and an artist they liked. I don’t think you are going to see any Adam fans writing any long reviews themselves and posting them here. A comment or two but not a review. That is what fan sites are for. I thought you were talking about actual reviews. The reviews that are generally posted here about Adam or anyone are from publications. But he is not the model for who gets reviewed on the Idol tour.

  104. No, that was Marco – no *s*. He still shows up to post from time to time.

  105. Why? I’m a big Kris fan, he’s a great guy and I think he’s a very talented musician. But he’s not a star. He doesn’t play arena tours or have his songs all over the radio. He is a guy who has managed to support himself and his family as a working musician for nearly 10 years.

    He got paid what he did 9 years ago because back then the Idol tour was playing 15-20K capacity arenas and had sponsors helping to pay for the shows. The producers could afford to pay Kris (and Adam) that type of money.

    And calling this Top 7 a bunch of “nobodies”? NOT COOL.

  106. The Top 7 have to be professionals from here on out, as of starting three days ago. They are no more “amateurs” than any other young musicians — if anything, less so, since they’ve performed on a network TV show in a format where they got some level of training and coaching.

    Nine years ago, Kris Allen was literally where they are now (albeit the show and tour were culturally bigger back then). He was a musician who’d just been on Idol and was now going out on his first major national tour. Music education is one of his causes, so there’s a natural fit here, where there might not be with other Idols who also have modest careers but different interests.

    Whether I think his presence is a great idea as part of a fun evening of music performances, we’ll see when I actually see the show… but as an idea on paper, having him do this doesn’t horrify me. (It doesn’t excite me, either, but I was never a fan — I’m just kinda blandly neutral where KA is concerned.)

  107. “Nine years ago, Kris Allen was literally where they are now…”

    Yes…apt point. Girlygirl posted a Disney Radio interview with Kris on the current Headlines thread where he talks about that exact thing…for instance, observing the cast reactions seeing the buses for the first time, etc. I think his interest in helping out new artists in the Idol family may have been a factor in taking this gig, but I don’t see Kris being separated from his own family for that stretch of time unless the revenue stream was making it worth his while. JMO.

  108. It was Idol reducing the tour payments when they moved from Sony to Interscope not that the label reduced the payments. Idol most likely did it because the demand changed. The labels also changed with decreased demand and results.

  109. Reminder:

    So…we aren’t going to be waging thinly veiled season 8 fan wars all summer right? ?


    Please keep the conversation on topic. Re-litigating past seasons of Idol–not the topic.

  110. Most of my friends, well just about all of my friends are music lovers, and a great many of them are serious, concert attending music lovers. If I polled 25 of them, 24 of them would have no idea who Kris Allen is because unlike me, they are not reality singing show watchers.So I would think that any chance Kris Allen gets to put his name out there in an event that is getting some publicity and backing from Disney is a good move.

  111. I watched the videos and think they sound good in the opening group number and individually. This is a chance for them to learn how to work a stage relate to the audience and hopefully pick up some fans along the way. Its a wonderfully opportunity for them. I think back to some other AI tours I have been to and how most of the performers performed compared to how they perform today and the growth is amasing weather they are wildly successful or plugging along with a nice career. I am excited to see the show then support my favorite and follow and support their career. I suspect as always some will disappear some will plug along and who knows someone may be wildly successful.

  112. True. But why would they bother with a completely unnecessary opening act in the first place?

  113. “Going all out” costs money. Current venues are 10% to 20% of the size of venues that the tour played in its peak years. That means the tour is taking in less than 20% of the money it used to. (Ticket prices have been surprisingly stable, and even if there’s some increase, there’s also been inflation.)

    While the tour was profitable in the peak years, it wasn’t so wildly profitable that the same level of elaboration could be done on a budget that’s maybe 15% of the old budget.

    With roughly the same venue sizes and/or ticket sales in S13 and S14, we got “top 10 but no band” in S13 and “live band but only top 5” in S14. This wasn’t because TPTB hated fans and wanted us to be miserable, but because the draw of the tour could no longer support the full top 10 and a full band. It’s not a decision I love, but money is money.

  114. I really don’t think adding one more bus or Union musicians is as cheap as you all make it sound.

  115. Pretty sure it all went down because of the lack of success of Season 9. Embarrassing attendances at the tour venues. It’s the Lee Dewyze effect!

  116. Putting together on the same bill two or more acts that will hopefully complement one another and have a combined draw bigger than the acts alone is totally common in mid-level/low-level touring. Nothing charitable in assuming that’s the case here.

    Obvs, it’s different when the headliner is a huge act or a well-established niche act. Then the midliner and opener are definitely less-famous acts intended to gain audience from the headliner. But I’ve seen a decent number of local/regional shows where the entire bill is there to combine audiences.

    Idol’s at the level where this is a thing, rather than being the Concert of Summer. At least the Idols are getting out there to play for their fans.

  117. They haven’t done any big cities yet. guessing they will get a review in Los Angeles.

  118. Watched a couple of the videos and no one stands out to me. Could be because of all the group numbers. I didn’t care for most of them. They all seem like nice kids. Time will tell how their individual careers shake out. Good luck to them.

  119. It’s true a sponsor wouldn’t be interested in a dead brand, but that’s far from the only relevant issue in the spring of 2016. The date for CORE defaulting on its debt was before a tour could reasonably have hit the road, so finding a sponsor would not have solved the basic problem that the company was out of money and bleeding staff.

    Nobody wanted to work with CORE while the bankruptcy was in progress — there were a ton of unknowns and far too few people able to do useful work.

  120. I have to agree. What’s surprising tho is that this is the Idol reboot. I would have thought they would have gone all out for this tour. What I’ve seen is amateurish and mediocre for the most part. As others have said I definitely think a band would have made a big difference. Just seems like something is missing.

  121. See this is why they should have had Trent be the special guest, IMO, the poor guy never even got a tour. They probably could have paid him less than whatever they’re paying Kris and the left over money could have went towards hiring a band.

    If the prices for these shows are a lot higher than most acts that play those size venues, which I’m assuming they are more than say $25-$55, no way in hell I’d pay more to see a show without at least a band. That’s nuts.
    This whole tour seems so amateurish.

  122. “Going all out” costs money. Current venues are 10% to 20% of the size of venues that the tour played in its peak years. That means the tour is taking in less than 20% of the money it used to. (Ticket prices have been surprisingly stable, and even if there’s some increase, there’s also been inflation.)

    While the tour was profitable in the peak years, it wasn’t so wildly profitable that the same level of elaboration could be done on a budget that’s maybe 15% of the old budget.

    With roughly the same venue sizes and/or ticket sales in S13 and S14, we got “top 10 but no band” in S13 and “live band but only top 5” in S14. This wasn’t because TPTB hated fans and wanted us to be miserable, but because the draw of the tour could no longer support the full top 10 and a full band. It’s not a decision I love, but money is money.

  123. “They’re hoping the opening act will attract young fans and thus sell tickets.”

    You are being overly charitable, IMO. I think ABC was trying to kills two birds with one stone.

  124. Yeah, I never considered they may have asked Trent and he turned them down.

    What bothers me the most about the whole tour is this set up does nothing to help with the stigma these kids will be saddled with. A lot of the music industry already sees them as nothing more than reality TV karaoke singers. Touring, singing covers (not really their fault), no live band, all just re-enforces that stereotype. I’m assuming they all want some kind of career after this and this format for the tour just makes it easier to dismiss them as not being serious artists, IMO.

  125. You’ve just put a finger on why I never went to the tour before S13: a bunch of talented young people singing covers, I can hear for free or cheap at all sorts of places, many of which will sell me an adult beverage and some fancy nachos. (S13 was because I’d gone to Caleb’s album-launch party as an anthropological endeavor and was totally charmed by him during our brief chat at the M&G part.)

    I’m going this year because my Idol’s been vehement about supporting the reboot, and I’ve been feeling sufficiently uninspired by the whole Phoenix summer that cooperating was less trouble than finding something better to do. Next year, I intend to have something better to do.

  126. But you can’t have it both ways, either no one is talking about these kids so what does it matter what the outside world perceives or everyone is really interesting and knows they don’t have a band and now none of them will ever have a career because how dare they put on a vanity concert.

    For the most part this group is comprised of instrument playing singers. the only ones we can assume cannot accompany themselves are Jurnee, Gabby and Michael who are 3 disparate types of singers that any one band would need to be a very experienced (re:expensive) to make a difference. Jurnee wants to sing pop/r&b and they are used to backing tracks. Michael sings orchestral music so a small band probably woudn’t be equipped to handle and Gabby is all over the place with country, r&b so who plays for her?

    They are out for a summer of fun after being closed up for awhile so no harm no foul.

  127. No, S15 did not have a tour. That’s why I never use an S15 tour as a benchmark — there was no S15 tour. Trent hit the road that summer on a radio tour to promote his first single, but that was never in any way billed as an Idol tour, and no other Idols were along with him.

    CORE Media, the parent of Idol, declared bankruptcy within weeks of the season finale for Idol S15, so there would have been no way to put on a tour — the company was in shambles.

  128. I have 5th row seats and the original cost was $57.23 which I didn’t think was terrible. Add on a $30 for visiting with Kris and that’s an OK deal. They’ve tied the Idol Meet/Greet to particular seats and they’re pretty pricey – front row VIP (with meet all idols & Kris, Q&A, 2 songs & goodies) for $498 and Premium VIP (same deals as most expensive but rows 3-20 for $278 and All Hot Seat on sides in the back half for $198 and no meet but some goodies.

  129. They could have done a tour if they had a corporate sponsor to underwrite it. But Idol was supposed to be over and done, so it wouldn’t have made sense from a PR standpoint to put money into a defunct brand.

  130. I have tickets to the tour – I’m a Maddie fan & Caleb was my 2nd choice – I wish the tour would have more splash for them and for me as a viewer so I’m not sure why the *sigh*.

  131. That’s certainly an optimistic viewpoint to take.
    At the very least they are getting some performance/stage experience and a nice paying summer job. Could be worse I guess.

  132. …”was totally charmed by him during our brief chat at the M&G part.”
    This is both surprising, and the best part of your post. lol.

  133. Trent is going out on tour this summer. He’s got a bunch of headlining shows lined up and he is the opening act for about a dozen shows on the Rascal Flatts tour.

    So even if he had been approached about being the “special guest” for this AI tour (and who knows…maybe he was), he would have had to turn it down.

  134. But the only people complaining about no band are people that weren’t going to attend anyways. From the comments that I have seen on social media those that have gone have enjoyed the show and had a good time.

  135. Did AI not promote Lee and/or the tour like they did in S8? Im wondering if it was the boring season, or the promotion (or lack of it) after. I know Lee wasn’t treated like previous winners after his win.

  136. Let’s start with prices: I paid ~$45 this year for an absolute nosebleed seat. Decent non-VIP seats are closer to $80, and VIP goes as high as $300-something. S13 was equally expensive but sold so poorly that I got a good seat for $35-$40 as a last-minute deal. S14 was equally expensive and I paid my $80 with docility for reasons we can all guess.

    Here in Phoenix, ordinarily, $20 gets you a good indie band in a small/medium club. $50 often goes as far as decent seats at Celebrity Theater or Comerica Theater, for more established but not mega-famous acts. $80 is what I paid for a good seat to see Kelly Clarkson at the arena downtown. So the Idol tour prices here for super-fans who get a little stupid at the prospect of seeing their Idol (see, e.g., how eagerly I paid up in S14).

    It helps to kinda abandon the reasoning that anything to do with the Idol tour is primarily about great music. It’s a celebrity-starstruck-OMG MY IDOL IS MAKING NOISES ON STAGE experience. The S14 tour did have a highly competent band and some excellent musical moments, but I don’t think that’s what sold tickets. (S13, the Idols did their best against impossible odds.)

    As far as Trent, we don’t know that he would have been interested or that he wasn’t asked. Idols themselves don’t seem as intent on “here’s the experience Idol owes me” as fans do.

  137. I went on the website of Denver’s Paramount Theatre (where the tour plays tomorrow night) and, if I interpreted the sating map correctly (which isn’t a given, lol), it looks like there are about 200 seats remaining, mainly clustered in the back center of the venue (capacity for the Paramount is listed as just over 1800)

  138. This is the best suggestion I’ve seen so far. Addresses several points and definitely seems less karaoke. And no need for those tacky backing tracks. Perfect.

  139. All this talk about low budget motivated me to go to Youtube to watch some prior idol tour videos.(My choice of course was Season 7 and I picked the Kansas City stop.) Stage production was pretty stellar back in the day, and there’s nothing better than an arena full of screaming girls. It was just insane. It’s too bad this year’s group won’t be experiencing that level of excitement.

  140. When the idols experienced all that adulation and playing in arenas, it may have given them unrealistic expectations for their future solo careers. I always remember Anoop saying he is going to be back in the arena as a headliner. I think only three idols played in arenas in the US as a headliner.

  141. Yep. The tours have only been an extension of Idol for everyone. The better received seasons had better received tours for the most part. But even in better years, they were singing covers so nothing new about that. Idol stigma has been around forever but some broke thru with big careers and some had even larger barriers to overcome than some Idol stigma. So I would not write anyone off just yet. Especially not because of some Idol tour that seems to be lacking. Doors may open or may already be open (for all we know)for one or several besides Maddie. It may not matter if they were in favor of the most Idol viewers. What matters is if they find support, interest and a helping hand in the industry. It could come from anywhere for anyone.

  142. The Napa show at the Uptown Theatre was sold out and has capacity of 863. The crowd was so enthusiastic for all the acts. I loved the show even without a backup band. There was a keyboard player from Napa that played during the show but I do not know if he is in the rest of the tour. i rteally liked the way the Top 7 and Kris Allen played their instruments. I had been to many of the previous Idol shows, especially Season 8 and loved them but I felt they were too over-produced. Sometimes you couldn’t hear the singer because the band was too loud. I personally prefer an accoustic show with some backup music in the background.

  143. Maybe they just should have made it a flat out acoustic tour. That way no one would complain about the lack of a backing band and the ticket prices likely would have been lower. Meanwhile the Top 7 would still get to experience doing a full tour. And it’s not like they couldn’t still put on great performances.

  144. Have you seen the prices of the VIP Experience? Who can afford $495 for the first row, $275 for rows 2-20, $195 for the cheapest VIP Experience? I bought my VIP Experience for $275 only because I wanted to see Kris Allen again and also meet the Top 7. The ironic part of this though is Kris offered his own M&G for $30 after I already purchased the one for $275. I am going to 2 more shows with my friends that live in S CA and we are going to see Kris at the M&G for $30. A lot of the VIP seats that were originally saved were convertrd to regular tickets prior to the show.

  145. The show in Napa was fantastic! I could not believe how many songs they sang and I loved how they included Kris Allen as a special guest hosting, performing with the Idols and he had his own set that he sang including his brand new single, When All The Stars Have Died. The Top 7 are all fantastic singers, in their own way and put on a great show.

  146. We paid more than that to see Queen and weren’t even that close, nor got any goodies.

  147. Then they would get the dreaded “coffeehouse” label, lol. The tour is what it is so they will make the best of it. It was not going to change any careers with or without a band. They showcased their talent and abilities on the show and what they do on the tour (along with the experience) will most likely just reinforce any buzz or attention they received. Hopefully they made an impression and someone or some label took notice and will support them.

  148. Queen is an iconic rock band that is about to be honored with a Lifetime Grammy. The supply/demand dynamic is probably not exactly the sam as going to watch a bunch of people who competed on a t.v. singing competition.

    That said, I wouldn’t pay $500 to see anyone in concert. IMO, that’s a ridiculous amount of money. The most I have ever paid for any concert ticket is $100. And I thought that was too much, lol. But TBH, I couldn’t afford to pay $500 for a ticket even if I wanted to.

    For $500 I could get SIX of my songs professionally mixed by a recording engineer. And I would still have $50 left over. So for me, that would be a far better way to spend $500 (if I actually had a spare $500 after paying for me rent, utilities, health insurance, food, etc, of course — which isn’t usually the case).

    But obviously some people are willing/able to pay these prices to see their favorites. If that’s the case, good for them.

  149. Um every season except 15 had a tour and many of the idols from past seasons still “made it” in the music industry. It doesn’t matter if they sing covers, that has always been the format. I’m sure they are having a blast touring the country and getting a taste of life on the road.

  150. Maybe I’m missing something but why are you putting Kris on the same level as Maddie.

    Well one difference is Kris is interested in being an indie musician (nothing wrong with that) and Maddie is on a major label. Kris’s last hit was almost 10 years ago, you can’t live on that forever. This is probably a greater gig for him compared to just touring on his own using his own expenses.

  151. Maybe I’m missing something but why are you putting Kris on the same level as Maddie.

    Well one difference is Kris is interested in being an indie musician (nothing wrong with that) and Maddie is on a major label. Kris’s last hit was almost 10 years ago, you can’t live on that forever. This is probably a greater gig for him compared to just touring on his own using his own expenses.

  152. Who cares what happened or what they filled up 10 years ago. The idols still get to tour, get exposure, and meet the people who got them to that point. These kids of venues are the venues that they should expect at the beginning of their careers so it gives them a preview of the real world.

  153. Napa was sold out. Granted its a smaller venue, but a sell out is a sell out. :)

  154. “He is a guy who has managed to support himself and his family as a working musician for nearly 10 years.”

    JMO, but that should be the goal of every single contestant who gets a chance to be part of this show and makes it far enough along to get some notice. I think the early mega success of a few contestants actually had a negative effect in terms contestant priorities. I’;m sure you know better than most Girly just how difficult it is to even drum up a little notoriety in this arena, so getting a chance to be a successful working musician should be the pot at the end of the rainbow for these contestants.

  155. Glad to hear you had a good time. Maybe when you have time you can give us a setlist and order? :)

  156. Mel, pretty sure it was the boring season. After the succession of previous years’ tours, there’d be no reason to not promote S9. I had no plans on going to this tour but got tickets on Stub Hub (4) for $17 each about a week before. When I got to Staples thta night, they were sending anyone who did not have good seats over to the box office & they were changing the tickets to floor or level one. Now, that being said…. it turned out to be a great show!

  157. Musicians do not have to be in the union. Here in L.A., most of the session musicians I have personally worked with are not in the union. In Nashville, many of them are in the union.

    I couldn’t find anything online about salary rate for touring musicians who are in the union, other than a section about working on touring Broadway shows.

    However, in this article, it says that a touring musician, on the average, makes between $20-$40 per hour, with the higher paid ones making around $60/hr.

    So let’s say that the musicians get paid for a 3-hour show plus 2 hours of rehearsal/sound check. At $60/hr, that would be $300/day. So if you hire a 4-person band, that would be $1200/show. Plus per diem, of course. And travel/housing costs, but if the tour lives mainly on a bus, you are talking maybe one hotel room/week.

    So, at 5 shows per week, the producers of this tour would be looking at $6000/wk extra in salary, plus maybe another $1000/week in per diem plus hotel costs. So let’s say an extra $7500/week. This tour is (approx) 10 weeks long. Which means hiring a 4-man band where all 4 musicians would be getting paid at the top of the pay scale would cost the producers an extra $75,000. So we’re not exactly talking millions of dollars here. Even if the musicians got paid for the days they aren’t working, that would be $8400/wk (rather than $6000), but the per diem and hotel/travel costs wouldn’t change (as a rule you get per diem every day, whether or not there is a show). Even so, that would still come out to paying approximately $100K to bring 4 musicians on this 10-week tour.

    These producers couldn’t afford to pay out an extra $100K?

  158. I have no problem with anyone trying to reach for the dream of becoming a star. If someone wants to try and become the next Carrie Underwood or the next Bruno Mars or whoever, great, go for it. But at the same time, I’d suggest that they need to be realistic, to have a plan on how to proceed with their career if they don’t reach that goal. Both in terms of a plan for their music and a financial plan. That’s the best way to avoid finding yourself in trouble, both in terms of the career and the finances, if the person doesn’t reach his/her goals.

  159. “He is a guy who has managed to support himself and his family as a working musician for nearly 10 years.”

    JMO, but that should be the goal of every single contestant who gets a chance to be part of this show and makes it far enough along to get some notice. I think the early mega success of a few contestants actually had a negative effect in terms of contestant priorities. I’m sure you know better than most Girly just how difficult it is to drum up even a little notoriety in this arena, so getting a chance to be a successful working musician should be the pot at the end of the rainbow for these contestants.

  160. This really brings into focus how, whoever is producing this tour, doesn’t really give a shit.
    It’s almost embarrassing to think they assume, “why bother with a band, the fans will show up regardless. They aren’t serious music fans anyway, just reality TV fans”.
    So insulting.

  161. “But who gets to decide if they are doing it properly or how low the goal or how high?”

    Finally, probably the only question in this kind of discussion with an easy answer! No qualifiers, straight up, no chaser…the entity who gets to decide on the quality of their own life and career moves, and what is or isn’t enough is always the artist. They have the last word – just like for any other human being.

  162. If being a working musician is the goal then it should be good enough for all of them. But it is not. The cynical always point out that the newbies will not have success while claiming their guy is a success by virtue of being a working musician. I think they all should be allowed to try to reach whatever goals they may have with some understanding that they all don’t need to do it the way some other guy did it. But what fans want and what Idol wants is probably not the same thing. Idol wants and hopes their winners will become stars. That is part of their advertising. It does not always happen and sometimes it is a runner-up who achieves that status but make no mistake that is what they expect. I think most of them entering the contest hope to achieve fame and fortune as well. If it does not happen, they will make adjustments to their goals along the way. But trying to step on the newbies dreams, as soon as they even get started, cause it did not happen for some past Idol is just special.

  163. True. But not all indie artists are not on the same level. As with artists on a major (or any) label, some indie artists are very successful, while others struggle to make any money at all. Jason Aldean is technically an indie artist. So is Jason Isbell. So are a bunch of successful rappers.

    So “indie” does not necessarily mean unsuccessful. Obviously, Kris isn’t up there with Jason Aldean or Jason Isbell, but in terms of indie artists, from the outside looking in it seems like he’s doing alright.

    TBH, I wouldn’t be surprised if Maddie becomes an indie artist in the not too distant future. And it has nothing to do with how talented she is. I just have a hard time figuring out how Hollywood Records is going to market her. They are primarily a pop label whose target demo is tweens, tweens and young adults. Maddie is a AAA-type artist. In general, AAA artists’ primary target demo is not tweens & teens. They may be able to figure it out, but it just seems like a square peg/round hole situation to me.

  164. But who gets to decide if they are doing it properly or how low the goal or how high?There are Idols who scratch out a decent living and there are those making millions year after year and some in between. But each contestant and their team will need to map their goals and decide when and how to make adjustments if they don’t see a path or their expectations are too high. There will be disappointments for sure for those recently getting out there. But they get to give it a shot and try different methods just like those who tried before them.

  165. That is making an assumption that they are not paying the talent for which we have no clue. Smaller venues are less revenue but there are non-payroll expenses that have to be considered. Lets say that they pay Maddie 100k for the tour, 50k for Caleb, 45k for Gabby, 25k for Michael and Cade and 15k for Catie and Jurnee, that is a total of 275k for the Idols, lets through in another 150k for Kris which give us a total payroll of 425k. Now we have the bus rental of 1-1.5k a day (~60k), Bus Driver (20k), Crew for set up and electrical (100k – electricians have to be union) Sound guy (30k) Hall rental 47/5k (235k I have no idea how much it cost for the places they are playing), hotel and food (100k). So now we at a minimum of 1 million dollars ( all low guesses) and the avg these shows bring in is ~55k and we havent even figured in the insurance and incedentals and there is not a lot of room for other expenses. Really the other choice is not to have a tour at all like The Voice does and leave the talent to just float away.

  166. And the other side of the equation is – what did they charge per minute for ads on the show…ads which they sold, in part, on the strength of the cast’s performances?

    The PTB, the judges, staff, techs and creatives were already compensated… the winner is her label’s problem…but beyond minimum tour wages, the “promise to pay” in return for the rest of the Top Seven was sold as a platform, not a career…just a kickstart for a career…and they probably believed it. Looks like TPTB are delivering on the cheap. Again. smh.

  167. IMO, your figures for the Idols’ payment is waaaay off.
    Back in 2011 the Idol tour only paid the bulk of the top 10 $1000 a night, for a total of slightly under 50k for the whole tour that was around 49 shows. (Not sure if Scotty and Lauren might have made slightly more, but I know the 1k was correct for the rest of them.) There is even YT video of Stefano complaining about the low pay, even though the tour grossed over 22M, lol.

    At the time it caused a lot of bad feelings, since they were still playing arenas (and selling a lot of them out). The reduced pay was because the S9 tour was such a flop, so they reduced the payment for the S10 folks even though that tour was a huuuge success.!_Tour_2011

    Fast forward to 2018, with these small venues/revenues, and I wouldn’t be surprised if most of the top 7 are only making a few hundred dollars a night for each performance.

  168. SInce they are doing 47 shows Maddie’s pay works out to a little over 2k per show and for the lower placing contestants its less than $400/night so those figures are not that far off 7 yrs later.

  169. I doubt Maddie is making even that. And no way is Kris Allen making anywhere near 150k lol.
    This year’s tour is about 20% the size of 2011, and the pay for everyone is is probably down accordingly.

  170. Yeah, they scrambled last minute to add those 2 dates in the Philippines in Sept. That’s when they should have payed the whole cast a bonus for underpaying them all summer., IMO.

  171. They are still filling venues up and even selling out some, you are making this out to be a flop tour when it’s not.

  172. No, I’m not saying that at all. If they are filling the venues and selling some out, they absolutely booked this tour correctly.
    My point is only that the scale of the tour is about 1/5 the size that it was back in 2011, so the revenue earned and salaries for this tour are probably 1/5 of what they were then too. You can’t pay people the same on this tour compared to a tour that grossed 22M. Everything is proportional.

  173. Did the same thing when I was chkg out one of the shows but that one had the word pesos next to what was written like a lg $ amt lol.

  174. “The reduced pay was because the S9 tour was such a flop, so they reduced the payment for the S10 folks even though that tour was a huuuge success.”

    I remember that – Idol really messed up…the bookers and routers not paying any attention to the popularity drop for the Season 9 cast lead them to book the tour as if it were still the more popular seasons…then they were scrambling to fill seats…giving away tickets, etc. …didn’t they have to cancel some dates? I may be misremembering that part…

    But they reminded me of WWl generals who couldn’t catch up to the 20th century because they were always fighting the last war…because then, here comes the extremely popular Season 10….and after they cut everyone’s salaries, misjudged the demand, they had to add dates to their woefully underbooked tour! But even then, they didn’t restore the cast’s salaries to reflect the difference…and that was not well received, as I recall.

  175. The setlist in this article is pretty complete. not sure about the order. I tried to write it down but didn’t know the names of the some of the songs and lost track towards end of show.

  176. It’s like a live karaoke tour. And Gabby’s sister and cousin continue to post that Idol is rigged and Gabby got robbed. Her sister posted the top 3 got picked up by Red Light Mgt but I thought Idol managed them?

  177. “It’s like a live karaoke tour.”

    Nah, for the most part they play with live accompaniment, maybe more like a live acoustic tour.

    As for the management I don’t think Idol has a management team anymore and Gabby’s family really doesn’t help her.

  178. But you already said that they underpaid the 2011 crew so if they paid this group comparably to that one taking in COL increases the numbers fall in line.

  179. No band is more like karaoke IMHO. But some of the videos I’ve seen aren’t horrible. I just don’t see anyone blowing up or having a huge career. Will be interesting to see what happens after the our ends. And agree her family does more harm then good. Still sore losers is what they come across as instead of just being grateful she made it As far as she did. Take advantage of the opportunity instead of constantly knocking it.

  180. It looks like the set list is filling out a little more as we move along as Caleb and Cade have each gained a song.

  181. Really? When the producers of the Idol tour managed to get a way with underpaying the S10 cast that actually had a successful arena tour, no way they would ever pay more than that again, they probably have been paying the Idols less and less every year.

    Since 2011 the tour has only gotten smaller and less well attended over the years. We’ve seen the cost cutting they couldn’t hide, smaller venues, less Idols going on tour, no band, etc. I wouldn’t be surprised if their pay per show has gone down many more times over the years too.
    Why would a tour that is 1/5 the size that it was in 2011 pay the performers any more than 1/5 of that 2011 salary? You can’t pay out what you don’t make in revenue.

  182. Arenas, yes. But only a few were sold for full capacity. Most used a smaller configuration. Example: The Oregon arena has a capacity of 15K. That year the tour sold 9K and they are calling it 96% sold. They are calling the Providence venue as sold out, when it sold 8K but capacity is 15K. So a smaller configuration was used for most. The full capacities were mostly in Southern venues, understandably so. . There hasn’t been a true arena tour since season 9 and it bombed. The last well sold arena tour was S8.

  183. I saw them at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, N.J. at full capacity for the arena, sold out. They also had back to back nights at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. and back to back nights at the Nassau Coliseum in N.Y. So they did more than ok in the Northeast as well. lol
    Also demand was so high they went overseas for 2 back to back shows, only the second time in the history of the show, (I believe S3 was the other time.)
    The tour was successful. Period.

    But, all this isn’t really relevant to the actual point I was making about Idol’s salaries vs. size of the tour.

  184. Another bus? Bus driver? That can’t be cheap. . I just don’t think it’s as cheap as most think or a big deal to use backing tracks.

  185. Here is your first review

    He seemed to like the whole show and there is no revelations given. There was a photo of the set list (partial) order in the slide show.
    There are some nice pictures here but they are sprinkled in with a lot of pictures of concert goers.

  186. Love the concept of a blog where photographers use their art to frame reviews… if that caught on in more cities, I’d be thrilled.

  187. It’s so weird. The VIP package at the venue where I’m going wasn’t that expensive. Are there different levels of VIP experiences? (Although I have a front row seat and the description of the event sounds the same.) I’m sorry you had to shell out so much $$$. I’m sure you’ll enjoy the $30 M&G with Kris more. I got both packages, once I was able to establish that it was possible to do both. (The folks at Live Nation were pretty clueless and unhelpful; it took at lot of perseverance on my part.) I met Kris on Danny’s cruise — probably met you too! — so I thought it would be nice to see him again. I got the AI package mainly to see Catie and Michael.

  188. Yes, I noticed that the configurations for the Oregon arena (which has changed names several times) kept getting smaller. It was pretty pitiful in season 13.

  189. They still didn’t sell most arenas with full configurations. They did do 2 nights at Prudential Center but the total was 18K. Whereas the Pru center capacity for concerts is 19K. So they configured the arena smaller. It’s easy to check the S11 capacities, versus the actual arena capacities by just clicking on the arena in the table here. Yes, it was a successful tour. Because after the flop of S9, they figured out how to book & configure the venues correctly.

    I do agree that the salaries here were probably over estimated.

  190. Which show did you get? If it is at a fair, then it is $125 and the ticket is not included.

  191. Those prices that krismiklin posted are the same as the venue that I’m going to.

  192. Yes, that’s it. It’s a state fair. $75 a for front row seat, with no obligation to buy VIP package. But the AI VIP was $125, so $200 total for front row with VIP, which is cheaper than $495 or $275, but $5 more than whatever the cheapest VIP entails. And, of course, $30 for Kris.

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