Today Idol headlines after the jump ¦
New “Idol” Sex Tape: It Gets Worse for Jessica Sierra
Just when Jessica Sierra thought that facing eleven years in prison was the worst news of the week, the “American Idol” finalist learned that a major porn company has obtained a sex tape featuring Jess — and they’re preparing to distribute it……
Tampa ‘Idol’ finalist faces rehab
Former American Idol finalist Jessica Sierra has pleaded not guilty to charges stemming from a weekend fracas with three Tampa police officers outside a nightclub……..
Lawyer wants time to check out rehab options for fallen ‘Idol’
Former American Idol finalist Jessica Sierra will remain in jail at least a couple of more weeks for her latest dust-up with police.
Sierra, 22, pleaded not guilty Thursday to misdemeanor charges of disorderly intoxication and obstructing an officer without violence. She also denied violating the probation she began Nov. 19.
Defense attorney John Fitzgibbons said he doesn’t anticipate contesting the charges but asked Hillsborough Circuit Judge Daniel Perry for more time to seek out potential rehabilitation options.
“There’s a very significant drug and alcohol dependency issue here, ” Fitzgibbons said……….
Branching out, but playing it safe
….Surprise omissions in the top categories included Grammy favorites Paul McCartney and Bruce Springsteen, neither of whom was recognized for album of the year, an award Springsteen has never won. “American Idol”-spawned best-seller Daughtry was overlooked in the best new artist category. All three were recognized in other categories, however.
more stories like thisInstead of Daughtry, Grammy voters gave surprising nods to unsung soul singer Ledisi and youthful pop rock quartet Paramore. The other new-artist nominees – Winehouse, indie-gone-mainstream darling Feist, and wide-eyed country teen Taylor Swift – were shoo-ins….
Writers Talks Get Dose of Reality
….The guild announced Thursday it would picket FremantleMedia North America, producer of “American Idol” and other reality fare, to call for improved conditions for those working on reality and game shows.
A call to FremantleMedia for comment was not immediately returned…..
Awards look to West
N.C. artists also get Grammy love
….North Carolina “American Idol” alumnus Chris Daughtry heads up a large group of nominees with four each, a pack that includes Akon, Bruce Springsteen and Feist. Daughtry’s nominations include a nod for best rock album, but he was snubbed in the best-new-artist category.
Also on the North Carolina “American Idol” tip, High Point’s Fantasia picked up a nod for best contemporary R&B album….
Chuck Tilley heads to Hollywood
….Ever since childhood, Tilley knew he was interested in music.
“As a child, my radio was always on so I learned hundreds of songs at a very young age, ” he said. “I could hear something once or twice and then have it.”
Twenty years later, Tilley is playing in many more places than his old stomping ground in Tuscaloosa.
Tilley and his Nashville-based band, Sixwire, are competing on the first season of Fox’s “The Next Great American Band, ” from the producers of “American Idol, ” in which 12 bands compete for a contract with 19 recordings and the title of the “Next Great American Band.” ….
‘COLOR PURPLE’ HEADED BACK TO THE BIG SCREEN?: Oprah’s considering adapting Broadway musical.
….Barrino has extended her stay in the Broadway production with vocalist Chaka Khan, R&B singer Bebe Winans and fellow “American Idol” finalist LaKisha Jones set to join in January. A national tour features Tony nominee Felicia P. Fields, Michelle Williams of Destiny’s Child and another “American Idol” alum LaToya London
“Breaking Anotha” Idol
….There were good aspects of the album that should not be overlooked. One of the main producers and writers for the album was One Republic frontman Ryan Tedder, who penned the salient hit “Apologize.” But none of the tracks reach the frankness of “Apologize, ” instead quipping about Lewis’ ability to pick up a girl in a club. The effort should still be applauded, though. Two tracks did save the record from total oblivion: the catchy “Gots to Get Her, ” which uses the melody of the Irving Berlin classic “Puttin’ on the Ritz, ” and the dreamlike “How Many Words.” Unlike the other songs, Blake lets the music come naturally, skillfully utilizing contemporary elements to showcase his best assets. Despite these two tracks, Audio Day Dream will probably be left dusty and untouched on the shelves of Best Buy, next to those of predecessors Justin Guarini and Clay Aiken.
The Reliable Source
…..So, Francis Ford Coppola– who last weekend paid tribute to Kennedy Center honoree Martin Scorsese — phoned our colleague J. Freedom du Lac for a scheduled interview yesterday.
“Are you still in Washington?” asked du Lac.
The director responded: “Was I in Washington?”
“Uh, yeah. Sunday. For the Kennedy Center Honors.”
“Right!” Coppola said. “I wasn’t really there. I got there and they said, ‘You’re on in two minutes.’ ” After his Scorsese speech, he said, he turned around and left town.
Seems that’s how it goes for a lot of the stars who turn out for the annual show. One exception: American Idol Jordin Sparks , who stayed past 1 a.m. to sing for the stragglers on the post-gala dance floor (“Crazy, ” “At Last”). But she’s still new at this game . . .
Grammy nominations good news for West
….Many expected Bruce Springsteen’s muscular “Magic” to land on the list, but The Boss will have to be satisfied with his four nods for Best Solo Rock Vocal and Best Rock Song (“Radio Nowhere”), Best Rock Instrumental Performance (“Once Upon a Time in the West” from the “We All Love Ennio Morricone” tribute disc) and Best Rock Album (“Magic”).
In two of those categories — Rock Song and Rock Album — Springsteen faces tough competition from former Virginian Chris Daughtry. The “American Idol” castoff from 2006 has been the biggest-selling nonwinner in the show’s history, with the self-titled debut album from his band, Daughtry, moving more than 3.3 million copies. His family still resides in Fluvanna County.
Commercial success is now linked to critical acclaim, as Daughtry picked up four nominations: Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals (“Home”), Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals (“It’s Not Over”), Best Rock Song (“It’s Not Over”) and Best Rock Album (“Daughtry”), where, along with Springsteen, he’ll compete against stalwarts John Fogerty, Foo Fighters and Wilco….
Jack-o still thrills after 25 years
….Pop stars today are not forged in the music scene, they are manufactured (ahem, …American Idol). Performers, though the winners and runners-up may be, these new individuals are not molded from years of releasing singles and albums with the risk of them flopping, only to be dropped from a label a year later. Instead, they are automatically pushed to the front of the line via one of the biggest shows in TV history and have (relatively) no fear of failing in the music business….
Grammys love Kanye West, Amy Winehouse
….he Grammys are always a little curious, and Thursday’s nominations were no different. Among the major snubs were Springsteen, a Grammy favorite who was thought to be a contender in several of the biggies. Springsteen ended up with four nominations, but was shut out of the major categories.
Also overlooked was Daughtry, the “American Idol” contestant who earned four nominations — including Best Rock Album (“Daughtry”) and Best Rock Song (“It’s Not Over”) — but was bafflingly passed up in the Best New Artist category….
…Idol worlds are colliding.
Two guys who didn’t win …American Idol but who went onto huge music careers are both in concert here … on the same night.
But Clay Aiken and Chris Daughtry won’t be sharing a stage. Which is a shame, because who wouldn’t want to enjoy the absurdity of Daughtry doing some serious vocal shredding on Aiken’s …Invisible or Aiken turning, well, any of Daughtry’s rockers into odes to easy listening.
So, they will remain separate but equal.
Aiken will be crooning his Christmas cheer at a holiday concert at Mohegan Sun Arena. Daughtry will be doing his straight-ahead rock thing at Foxwoods’ Fox Theatre………..
Grammy nominations carry a Springsteen surprise
….I did get a chuckle over Daughtry’s “It’s Not Over” showing up in Best Rock Song, because the former “American Idol” contestant shares space with the Foo Fighters, Bruce Springsteen and the White Stripes, all critically approved.
Way to go, Idol Boy.
Franklin County’s Clark Brothers compete on reality TV
For seven weeks now, three Franklin County boys have been on prime-time TV.
But you probably didn’t know. Neither does the rest of the country.
The picking and singing Clark Brothers — Ashley, Austin and Adam — are trying to climb back to the upper limits of the music charts. They’ve been there before — back then, they were known as the Clark Family Experience. But a record label dispute ended with a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing, and the six-brother band eventually became three.
These days, the three are wowing judges and audiences on Fox TV’s “The Next Great American Band, ” which airs Friday nights at 8. But ratings have been poor for the show, which was the brainchild of the producers behind monolithic “American Idol.”………
Interview With “Next Great American Band” Contenders TrÃƒÆ’ ©s Bien!
Retropop band TrÃƒÆ’ ©s Bien! made it through five rounds of “The Next Great American Band, ” and were eliminated before getting to play in last week’s Rod Stewart challenge. Their exit was the second surprise in two episodes for me: I’d expected big-banders Denver And The Mile-High Orchestra to go both times, but first Franklin Bridge and then TrÃƒÆ’ ©s Bien! got the axe instead.
One advantage of being off the show, though, is that TrÃƒÆ’ ©s Bien! are now free to do interviews and gigs as they please. I spoke with guitarist Michael James Crowe this morning, and although disappointed to have left, he said he was glad for the exposure his band has gotten…….
Carrie Underwood: ‘I Don’t Do Stomach… Nobody Wants To See That!’
Carrie Underwood has vowed never to bare her belly on stage.
In a new interview with Glamour magazine, the former …American Idol champ said despite her slim figure, you wont be seeing her flashing her tiny tummy…..
Local man hangs on in TV band battle
A local man is still hanging on. His band is in the top five on “The Next Great American Band.”
Justin Carpenter, 24, plays trombone for Denver and the Mile High Orchestra (DMHO).
The show airs today at 8 p.m. on FOX. Viewers will find out if DMHO will stick around for another week or be sent home.
Last week, the theme was Rod Stewart songs. DMHO played “Baby Jane, ” which got mixed reviews…..
Sanjaya, Hannah Montana, 50 Cent, Kanye West And Others Had Us Fooled, In Our Year-End Top 10s
Radiohead and ‘The Sopranos’ also made sure we had more than our share of forehead-slapping moments in 2007.
You’d think in this age of instant Internet searches and round-the-clock news coverage, we’d all be super-savvy and cynical about the world around us. But in 2007, we had more than our share of forehead-slapping moments when we realized ‘ oof! ‘ we’d been duped again. Of course, politicians will always lie to our faces; world leaders will always deny the existence of nuclear weapons, human-rights violations, privacy laws and/or homosexuals in their countries; and Britney will always tease us with the hope that she will eventually pull it together for a real comeback. But for this list, we’ll concentrate on all those times the wool was really pulled over our collective eyes………
American Idol: Season Seven Starting Without Sparks
The scandal. The bad singing. The fierce competition. Last year American Idol had all the ingredients for high-ratings reality success, but will FOX be so lucky in Season Seven?
Sweet-faced, young Jordin Sparks was declared last year winner, but her new album has gained dismal sales. In fact, Sparks has released the lowest-selling Idol debut album in the entire history of the show. Have fans lost interest?…..
‹Idol runner-up Blake Lewis creates ‹album I wanted to make
Not since Chris Daughtry has an …American Idol contestant had a legitimate shot to break big after the season conclusion. Among Season 6 contestants, Blake Lewis appears to be the one’ especially after winner Jordin Sparks album debut, …Tattoo, sold an anemic 119, 000 copies in its first week of release.
Why? While Sparks has the superior voice, she just doesnt have …it. Sweet, likable girl, but in no way groundbreaking…..
…..A quick warning for Lewis: Kelly Clarkson made the album she wanted to make, too, but it was by far her least successful.
Still, Lewis first single is the addictive …Break Anotha. And much like his performances on …Idol, it as infectious as it is difficult to ignore. In addition to bending his voice as if it were on a turntable, the song is signature Lewis: predominantly pop influenced by R&B, it even got a bridge that busts out some ska-influenced saxes. No …Idol alum could or should ever attempt this song other than Blake.
Will it translate into something bigger? Only time will tell.
But if Blake fails to connect with a niche audience, even more pressure will be placed on Season 7 contestants, who are, of course, the …best ever.
Review: Chris Daughtry at Nokia Times Square
In front of a sold-out crowd Tuesday night Chris Daughtry, erstwhile American Idol finalist and current rock juggernaut, took part in the most harrowing of concert rituals: He tried out new material on the road. The song in question was called “Back to You, ” and, like many of Daughtry’s others, it was about breaking up – both romantically and emotionally. His introduction of it was noticeably guarded. “It would make me very happy if it ended up on the next record, ” he said, “but if you guys think it sucks, I don’t want to hear any noise afterward.”
From any other musician this would be empty banter, but Daughtry has good reason to defer to his audience. While most of his peers struggle to sell into six digits, Daughtry’s debut has moved well over 3 million copies. Last month, those same fans took up the perilous hobby of Internet voting, and as a result Daughtry – both the man and the band that shares his name – ended up with a trio of American Music Awards. Where many of his contemporaries play to niches, Daughtry casts his net wide. There’s no such thing as a typical Daughtry fan: He appeals to teenagers and to their parents, to men and to women. Above all, he appeals to couples (and, based on their behavior Tuesday night, he helps the members of those couples appeal to one another). He’s the lug with the cotton heart, instilling lumbering hard rock with relentless vulnerability.
Which doesn’t make for riveting listening. There’s nothing wrong with Daughtry’s songs, but there’s nothing much right about them, either……..
Q & A: Richmond’s favorite Idol, Elliott Yamin, speaks
Tonight in Norfolk, American Idol hero Elliott Yamin will join a set of tennis stars at AnthemLIVE!, a fundraiser for cancer research.
Racket masters James Blake, Serena Williams, Mardy Fish and Tatiana Golovin will be part of the event starting 7 p.m. at the Ted Constant Center at Old Dominion University. Yamin will provide the night’s only musical moments. Co-star Gloria Gaynor had to cancel her appearance in Norfolk due to illness.
Last week, Yamin called from Los Angeles and answered questions about his developing career as a blue-eyed soul singer. Yamin’s self-titled debut CD has gone gold. His song “Wait For You” is at No. 8 on the Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart and his new Christmas album is currently a strong seller………
Strange Grammy Nominees: Barack Obama, Tia Carrere & More!
Sure, Kanye West and Amy Winehouse are this year’s big Grammy nominees. But which former Dancing With the Stars contestant is nominated for best Hawaiian music album? (Hint: It’s not Drew Lachey!) And it looks to be a big year for American Idol at the Grammys. Here’s our shortlist of some of the more interesting, offbeat nominations and Grammy tidbits.
American Idol continues to dominate at the Grammys. Seven former contestants earned nominations this year, including frontrunner Chris Daughtry with four nods (including co-writing honors with Brett “Ace” Young for “It’s Not Over.”) Meanwhile, past champs Fantasia and Carrie Underwood made the list, as did Oscar winner Jennifer Hudson, who was nominated as a songwriter, for “Love You I Do” from Dreamgirls. Mandisa is nominated for best pop/contemporary Gospel album for “True Beauty, ” and Kelly Clarkson is up for best country collaboration with Reba McEntire for “Because of You.”….
Kanye drops the Ball: your opinion?
What do you think: Should we sympathize with Kanye West and let him slide for dropping out of tomorrow night KDWB Jingle Ball at the last minute? Or should we bash him over the fact that he skipping us but has been performing in Europe since the death of his mother?
And what your opinion on the rest of the Jingle Ball? Does the addition of …American Idol beat-boxer Blake Lewis even come close to filling the hole left by Kanye? What about the rest of the lineup: Are Avril Lavigne, Good Charlotte, Jordan Sparks and Timbaland and his cronies enough to justify the $37-$127 prices?…………
Disc debuts: ‘Audio Day Dream’ by Blake Lewis
A TRUE MTV ‘IDOL’: As the runner-up to Jordin Sparks on the last season of American Idol, Blake Lewis showed promise as a shameless (some would say aimless) ham of all urban-music trades. From beatboxing and scat singing to plucky hit reinterpretations and alter-ego parading, his confident eclecticism endeared him to many, including the judges. The challenge after season six was to bottle up Mr. Lewis’ dervish sonic wanderlust and present it as a visionary teen-pop manifesto……….
How the field stacks up
….Let’s move to the best-new-artist category, always a Grammy wild card. Relatively obscure acts Ledisi, Paramore and Feist join Ms. Winehouse and teen country sensation Taylor Swift. Most people probably read Ledisi’s name and exclaimed, “Who?” The New Orleans R&B singer’s major-label debut, Lost & Found, followed two independent releases. Lost & Found made a bit of noise, peaking at No. 78 on Billboard’s pop albums chart and No. 10 on the R&B list, but it hardly established her as a well-known name.
Yet where’s Daughtry, the former American Idol finalist who earned modern-rock cred and crossed over to pop with “It’s Not Over, ” the huge single from his group’s 3 million-selling debut CD? Sure, he has four nominations in lesser categories but he should have been named for best new artist, too. And for that matter, where’s Bucky Covington, another Idol contestant who released the best country record from that franchise?….
Greenhill man nominated for two Grammys
Chris Tompkins was in the Charlotte, N.C., airport when he heard the news Thursday that he has been nominated for a coveted Grammy Award.
Tompkins, a songwriter and Greenhill native, was nominated for the award for his work with the Carrie Underwood hit, “Before He Cheats.”
The song, which Tompkins co-wrote with Josh Kear, has been nominated for two Grammys……
……..Tompkins said he’s been in Los Angeles writing with former American Idol contestants Chris Daughtry and Kelly Pickler, as well as Jessica Simpson….
Idols and indifference
Daughtry stands with both hands clasping the microphone, staring intensely upwards as if projecting every ounce of his being towards a distant row of seats high in some cavernous arena. A powerful roar emanates from him. It’s the sound of Daughtry singing. “It hurts like a runaway train, ” the Vin Diesel look-alike cries as -guitars and drums bawl along in -sympathy.
The song, a deafening hard rock -ballad, ends with the pumped-up Daughtry bellowing, “We want to hear your voices, London.”
The room fills with cheers. The American singer and his band are -performing a master class in stadium rock, even though the setting, incongruously, is a tiny venue in central London, the Scala.
Daughtry, with well over 3m album sales in the US but scarcely 400, 000 anywhere else, is trying to crack the UK market.
Success is not guaranteed. US pop may straddle the globe but its biggest names are not always exportable. In spite of the impression that the world is an avid consumer of all things American, there are certain US rock stars whose popularity evaporates once they set foot outside their -homeland……..