Fans Can Vote Online for Academy of Country Music Top Winner
Kenny Chesney, Brad Paisley, George Strait, Carrie Underwood and Keith Urban are competing online for the Academy of Country Music’s Entertainer of the Year. Fans can vote on www.voteACM.com or www.cbs.com/acma for any of the nominees through the last hour of the 44th Annual ACM Awards on April 5 at 8 p.m. ET on CBS. Each nominee is also scheduled to perform during the show. ‘ Mike Fleeman
A SONG IN HIS HEART
Chikezie Eze will be doing double duty once he heads out on the “American Idol Pop Tour” March 25 in Pennsylvania. He’ll be bopping back and forth between tour dates and recording his debut album.
“The album means so much to me ¦ They said they’d work around it, ” reports the 23-year-old singer. He says his recording will feature a mix of songs that “I love for different reasons. There are a lot of universal themes — love, hardship — and songs that are just for a general good time. That’s something we need right now.”
‘American Idol’ chatter four-sees finalists
Aside from Paula Abdul, the producers of …American Idol have one more loudmouth to deal with on the set.
One of the hit show staffers is running around telling anyone wholl listen that the team of producers and judges has already picked the final four contestants ‘ despite the fact that 11 kids are still battling to be the latest pop star.
The female …AI worker told a …group of people that the last four are going to be Danny Gokey, Lil Rounds, Adam Lambert and Alexis Grace, said our insider. Asked if this was opinion or actual fact, the staffer vehemently retorted, …Those ARE the people, saying it wasnt mere speculation.
More Idol Headlines after the JUMP…
Eyeing the ‘Idol’ odds: 2009 American Idol Meter
Predicting the results on Idol isn’t a science. But it’s fun to approach it that way. We’ve come up with a fast-track formula to gauge each singer’s momentum heading into the next week of competition. Contestants can score up to 100 points, or ‘ if they’re in danger ‘ into negative numbers.
The return of Ken Barnes!
Ken Barnes, the founder of the Idol Chatter and generally all-around fantastic guy, returns to the fold today with the launch of USA Today 2009 American Idol Meter. Each week, the Idol Meter is going to rank the momentum of the American Idol finalists from now through the season finale.
‘American Idol’ Power List: Who’s hot (and not) going into top 11 performance night?
1. Adam Lambert: (Last week: No. 5) With his high-octane, howling theatrics, Adam is polarizing, to be certain. But his take on “Black or White” sent the judges into fits of rapture, and he certainly stands out in a season where too many performances have been safe or vocally imperfect — or both. Must avoid a Maroulis-esque spiral, but going into the top 11, he’s got the power.
American Idol Top 11 Power Rankings
1. Adam Lambert
The judges haven’t hid their love for Adam, and our users agree. Adam came in first place with a huge 32 percent of the vote after wowing the crowd with “Black or White.” Will anyone be able to surpass this guy and his hype?
What the ‘American Idols’ should – and should not – sing on Grand Ole Opry night
Memo to “American Idol” finalists for “Grand Ole’ Opry” week: Stay away from songs that long-time country fans would actually associate with that revered institution.
Hank Williams Sr. and Kitty Wells may have written and sung some of the greatest songs in country music history.
But for the 11 remaining contestants, doing anything close to an authentic rendition of “I Can’t Help It If I’m Still in Love With You” or “It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky-Tonk Angels” is a pretty sure ticket to watching next week’s show on television.
Politician urges mayors, governors to stump for ‘American Idol’ finalist Matt Giraud
KALAMAZOO, MICHIGAN — Kalamazoo, Michigan Mayor Bobby Hopewell Monday told a gathering of business leaders that he has asked Gov. Jennifer Granholm to join him in drumming up votes for Kalamazoo’s “American Idol” contestant Matt Giraud, who is the only finalist from Michigan and only one of two from the Midwest.
He said Granholm once before promoted an “Idol” finalist — Flint native LaKisha Jones in Season Six in 2007; she made it to fourth place.
An unlikely Idol
Whether Anoop Desai lasts in American Idol or not, one thing is certain, say his family members — his passion for music will continue. Desai was back in the competition after being nearly booted out of it. As a reporter put it, 13 became a lucky number for him early March when he won a previously unannounced 13th spot in the next round of the hugely popular Fox singing contest in which viewers vote in millions.
‘A spot in the American Idol finals looked like it was Anoop Desai’s to lose in the first live-performance week, ‘ wrote MTV.com’s Katie Byrne, ‘but when the 21-year-old student came out with a sleepy performance of Monica’s Angel of Mine, he didn’t make the cut… The judges saw something in the affable singer and brought him back as a wild card.’
Braddy family throws party for ‘Idol’ contestant
ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (AP) — Former “American Idol” contestant Ricky Braddy met fans, signed autographs and had his picture taken with fans at a party in his native North Carolina..
The one thing he didn’t do Sunday was sing. The Daily Advance of Elizabeth City reported Monday that family friend Jeff Clark said Braddy’s contract with the show bars him from singing for at least the next three months.
But he was able to meet about 500 fans who attended a party in Elizabeth City thrown by Braddy’s family to thank the community for its support. Braddy made it to the top 36 contestants but not the final 13.
Clark says Braddy plans to go to Nashville, Tenn., this week, do some interviews with the TV show’s media company and see what happens next.
Mich.’s Giraud a beat away from ‘Idol’ top 10
Each week, Matt Giraud finds himself singing to millions on “American Idol.”
Four years ago, however, his audience was much smaller.
It was anyone who walked through the lobby of a Michigan hotel.
“I definitely played a lot of piano in the lobby, down at the Marriott in Ypsilanti, (at) like 19, ” Giraud recalled by phone.
“I just played by myself for free.”
This week’s Idol airplay chart
Finally, some movement in the top 10 of our Idol airplay chart! On the week of her return to American Idol, Carrie Underwood moves into the 2 spot with I Told You So behind My Life Would Suck Without You. (Carrie also has the highest-debuting track on this week’s chart, as her cover of MÃƒÆ’ ¶tley CrÃƒÆ’ ¼e’s Home Sweet Home enters at 38.) David Cook’s Light On falls two notches to 4. Jennifer Hudson’s If This Isn’t Love and Daughtry’s Feels Like Tonight swap places, as do Carrie’s Before He Cheats and David Archuleta’s Crush.
Taylor Hicks Tics For Charity
Despite being openly mocked on the show that made him a star, “American Idol” Taylor Hicks isn’t hiding in shame. The season five winner came out to perform for the runners at the 13th Annual Susan G. Komen’s Race For The Cure event, which raises money for breast cancer research.
But perhaps it’s Taylor who needs the help because I didn’t even know he released his sophomore CD last Tuesday. It’s called “The Distance” and it’s the first disc Taylor’s released under his own label, Modern Whomp Records since being dropped from his label last year. I can’t decide if he intentionally or coincidentally released his album the same day Kelly Clarkson dropped “All I Ever Wanted.” Either way, bad idea jeans!
Have you bought “The Distance”? Is it any good?
Dish Of Salt: Taylor Hicks Talks ‹Idol & Dating
Laura Saltman talks with Taylor Hicks about how people compare this season …Idol contestant Danny Gokey to him, but does he like the comparison? Plus, Taylor shares his experience of doing celebrity dating on …Live with Regis and Kelly.
Phil Stacey and Gina Glocksen report from the road
When Phil Stacey signed on for the American Stars in Concert tour, he figured the shows would run like they had on most tours he’d done. He’d go out and do his set, the other acts would go out and do theirs.
When he showed up for rehearsals, he found out the tour’s producers had something entirely different in mind.
“All of a sudden, they have us dancing and singing, like, medleys, ” Phil told me from the bus today, after the tour’s opening date last night in Ft. Pierce, Fla. “I’m like, ‘What are we doing?’
“It turns out those are some of the more fun moments in the show, and it really does work a lot better than I thought it would.”
MaryEllen Locher Foundation Has Luncheon April 19
The MaryEllen Locher Foundation will host INSPIRE ‘ the spark that ignites in honor of the 7th anniversary of the foundation on Sunday, April 19, 12:30 p.m. at the Chattanooga Trade and Convention Center.
American Idol 6 finalist, and Sony /Reunion recording artist, Phil Stacey will be the featured guest at the luncheon. Mr. Stacey, …a Navy veteran and family man continues to touch lives with his positive message and beautiful voice. Phil also joins Randy Owen (Alabama), Barbara Dooley (Mrs. Vince Dooley ) and Tim Nichols (award winning songwriter) as a member of the MaryEllen Locher Foundation Advisory Board.
Bret Michaels Brings Back Heather and Ambre on a …Rock of Love Bus With an …American Idol Twist
Sixty Minutes of Rockin Reality in Three Sentences: As we mercifully draw closer to the conclusion of this dreadful, joyless season of Rock of Love, Bret Michaels brings in the girls ex-boyfriends and two interrogators ‘ our beloved Heather from ROL season one, and season two …winner Ambre. After some contentious questioning (Brittanya spits at Heather, and Ashley has to admit she still lives with her muscle-bound tattooed ex, James), the pair decide their favorite is Mindy. So where this American Idol twist you may be asking ¦
Hey-Oh!: Jamie pal Hamboussi shows up and reveals she was a groupie following his band around. And which band would that be? According to the Interwebs, it was the group fronted by American Idol hopeful turned Rock of Ages star Constantine Maroulis, Pray for the Soul of Betty. Hang on one second, our head just exploded.
ROCK OF AGES Offering ‘Powerhouse Party’ Worthy Perks
Continuing the theme of offering the most radical perks for their audience (like offering the lowest top ticket price for any Broadway musical), the producers of the new Broadway musical comedy ROCK OF AGES announced several ticket initiatives that that will treat audience members to one of the most unique (and inexpensive!) experiences on Broadway, every night.
Previews begin tonight, Tuesday, March 17th at The Brooks Atkinson Theatre, 256 W. 47th Street. Opening night is set for Tuesday, April 7, 2009.
Kelly Clarkson – All I Ever Wanted Review
Kelly Clarkson is the people champion; the underdog that was selected as America first and perhaps best Idol. She was just a small town waitress, who has turned into a record breaking pop star. She is relatable, the girl next door that every one knows.
While her peers rely on sex and titillation to sell their wares, Clarkson relies on her strong and versatile voice to make the masses buy her product. While other pop princesses show up at trendy L.A. hangouts, Kelly stays at home in Texas out of the limelight. While the others use dance and hip-hop to flush out their sound, Kelly uses pop rock to match her strong voice. While the other automatons are told what to sing, Kelly took on the head of her label, Clive Davis in the name of artistic freedom.
‘American Idol’ finalist Kristy Lee Cook: ‘Horse is my best friend’
Want to get in the country spirit for the launch of “American Idol’s” Grand Ole Opry week tomorrow? Download this Christopher Closeup podcast interview with Season 7 finalist Kristy Lee Cook. In it, the country cutie chats about her love of horses and also plays her new song, “Like My Mother Does.”
The “Idol” finalist seems particularly jazzed about the launch of her new charitable organization, the Kristy Lee Horse Heaven Foundation, which adopts neglected and abused horses, rehabilitates them and helps find them good homes. The foundation also helps impoverished youths interact with horses, an activity that Kristy swears has therapeutic power.
B105 DJ to see stars perform his creation
Jesse Tack and Travis Moon have every right to say “I Told You So.”
Tack, evening DJ at WUBE-FM (B105.1), has created a country music phenomenon by combining Carrie Underwood’s “I Told You So” with the 20-year-old original version by Randy Travis.
It’s become such a hit on 200-plus country stations that Underwood and Travis will sing the duet Wednesday on “American Idol” (9 p.m., Channels 19, 45).
“It’s pretty exciting. I’m riding pretty high, ” Tack, 26, the 7 p.m.-midnight DJ, said.
Moon, B105 program director, asked Tack to tinker with combining the two songs after Arista Records released Underwood’s single in January. He spent about six hours mixing her rendition from her 2007 album with Travis’ 1987 vocals.
B105 phones lit up when listeners heard Tack’s track.
Jennifer Hudson To Get ‘Intimate And Personal’ On Tour
Jennifer Hudson is buzzing at the prospect of the first-full scale concert tour of her career.
“I’m excited to get out and meet the people and sing for the people, ” Hudson, who hits the road March 31 in Albany, N.Y. with Robin Thicke, told Billboard.com Monday during a conference call with reporters. “I always love to perform live. The only other tour I’ve been part of is the (American) Idol tour, so this’ll be more intimate and personal.”
But Hudson did acknowledge that with just one album (2008’s Grammy Award-winning “Jennifer Hudson”) and material from her Academy Award-winning role in “Dreamgirls, ” co-headlining with Thicke made more sense for an inaugural tour rather than going out on her own.
Queen Elizabeth Snubs Simon Cowell
Queen Elizabeth snubs Simon Cowell
Royal Watch News
Mar 17, 2009, 11:20 GMT
Britain’s Queen Elizabeth has no idea who Simon Cowell is.
The 82-year-old monarch was introduced to the reality TV mogul at a Royal Variety Performance in 2007 but didn’t recognise him.
Piers Morgan describes the encounter in his upcoming book ‘God Bless America: Misadventures Of A Big Mouth Brit’.
The journalist and US ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ contestant attended the annual charity gala to introduce ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ winner Paul Potts to the queen and bumped into Cowell in the queue.
He wrote: “Simon Cowell arrived at 6.30pm looking unusually twitchy. ‘Have you ever actually met the Queen?’ I asked. ‘Erm – no.’ ‘Nervous?’ ‘No, of course not.’ ‘What if she doesn’t recognise you?’ ‘Piers, don’t be ridiculous.’
“Later, when the Queen and Prince Philip reached us in the line-up, it was quite clear that neither had a clue who Cowell was. The Queen shook his hand with a bemused half-smile on her face and moved swiftly on to me with an expression of familiar relief.
Melissa Rycroft’s New Man (and Parents!) Cheer Her On at DWTS
Bachelor star Melissa Rycroft wowed judges again on Monday’s Dancing With the Stars, as she and partner Tony Dovolani earned the night’s second highest score of 26/30 for their sexy salsa.
Cheering her on in the audience? Her boyfriend Ty — and her parents.
“A big support system today. They all sat together!” Rycroft, 25, told Usmagazine.com after Monday’s show. “It felt really, really good. I could see that they were proud by the smiles on their faces.”
Added Rycroft (who has studied ballet), “They’ve never seen me dance like this!”
Gilles, Melissa look like ‹Dancing stars to beat
Injuries are fast becoming the theme of this season of …Dancing With The Stars, and two new ones popped up this week. What didnt pop up were new favorites, as many dancers improved, but the same strong performers from last week premiere continued to dominate.
The weaker of the last-minute replacements, former Hugh Hefner girlfriend Holly Madison, didnt improve very much. Her quickstep looked, as judge Bruno Tonioli pointed out, like she was running to catch up with her partner, which brought to mind not so much elegance as tardiness. While she pleasant and game, Holly will suffer if she consistently a beat behind the music ‘ a problem that perhaps more pronounced in the quickstep than in any other dance. Eighteen points gave Holly a total of 36 over two weeks.
‘Dancing With the Stars’ Recap: Mmm…Salsa
On last night’s Incurring Serious Injuries with the Dim Bulbs, Steve Wozniak barreled through a quickstep on a bum foot, while a completely unnecessary front flip during dress rehearsal left jackass Steve-O flat on his back, unable to perform. But is that really important? Psych! Trick question; the topic is Dancing with the Stars. But seriously, this is important to me: SUDDENLY ‘ since last week, not last season ‘ the original, semi-sparkly judges’ paddles have become…new, super-sparkly judges’ paddles. [Pause for gasps.]
So You Think You Can Dance Craze Sweeps Mid-South
MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Monday the crew from So You Think You Can Dance held auditions at the Cadre building in downtown Memphis.
FOX13’s Good Morning Memphis interviewed the Co-Executive, John Thacker, host, Cat Deely, and a multitude of personalities that showed up for auditions.
Because of such a large turn-out, the audtions are being extended from noon to the end of the day. Officials say that will see every potential contestant.
Memphis is the next to last city holding auditions. Seattle will be the final stop, so individuals from all over the country have shown up in the Mid-South to see if they have what it takes.
Judges think one guy from Denver can dance
The judges of “So You Think You Can Dance” just might send a Denver finalist to the competition. After callback auditions Friday at the Colorado Convention Center, the judges pronounced the Denver contenders “quiet, ” “safe” and “disappointing, ” with the exception of one young man.
“We got him, ” said judge Mary Murphy.
She declined to name names, but several of the dancers thought they knew which contemporary male dancer jumped out. Is it possible Chase Everett of Denver was the one who emerged as a contender? We’ll see.
Creator-producer Nigel Lythgoe said the Denver auditions produced lots of good social dancers, but overall a rather “narrowcast” group, lacking training and focus.