Carrie Underwood performs at the FedEx Forum in Memphis, TN.
Clay Aiken performs at Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek, CO.
Kimberley Locke performs at Roscoe’s Tavern in Chicago, IL. Via AmericanIdol
Phillip Phillips performs at New Music Live in Toronto, Canada
How Did They Write That? Phillip Phillips, “Home” – How much or how little did you edit it, during or afterward? Were there any phrases or words you can remember that were especially tough to make a final decision on? I edit quite a bit in sessions. Sometimes even changing a conjunction can make a huge difference. Even while the singer is on the mic I’ll be asking them to try different words or melodies, because you never really know how well something is going to sound until you hear it through the mic and out of the speakers. On “Home,” we did make an arrangement change about a month after it was written. Originally the song was just two verses at the top, then the “oooh” tag and then it ended. We thought maybe it should come back to one more verse, but we couldn’t find anything new that we wanted to say without taking the song in a different direction. A month went by of listening to the song off and on and there was just something missing. My girlfriend, who’s a songwriter in her own right, suggested just repeating the second verse after the tag. We tried it and it worked. The song just flowed really well after that. – Read more at American Songwriter
Scotty McCreery Christmas in Washington Previews
Santa Clause is Back in Town
Part 2 – Mary Did You Know
Casey James Talks Plans for 2013 with CMTT
Casey will begin working on his next album in 2013
USO Trouper Kellie Pickler Entertains, Salutes Troops – BAGRAM, Afghanistan, Dec. 17, 2012 – Country music star Kellie Pickler is among the celebrity entertainers taking part in Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey’s annual USO holiday show tour, which entertained Afghanistan-deployed U.S. troops posted here and at Kandahar Airfield. On this trip, the USO troupe also has entertained service members aboard the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis and at the Transit Center at Manas, Kyrgyzstan. “It’s always different coming here this time of the year,” she said. “[During] the holidays — Thanksgiving has already passed — everyone wants to be home with their families and loved ones. “Then, Christmas is right around the corner,” Pickler continued. “It’s a hard time for all of you.” – Read more at Defense.Gov
Steven Tyler Slams Former Managers In ‘American Idol’ Pay Raise Lawsuit – Former American Idol judge Steven Tyler said today that he “very much wanted to end the relationship” with the ex-managers that are now suing his lawyer. The legal declaration (read it here) and increased war of words from the Aerosmith frontman came Monday in response to an $8 million lawsuit Kovac Media Group/Tenth Street Entertainment filed October 11 against Dina LaPolt. In that suit, Kovac claims that LaPolt ruined Tyler’s chances to get a big raise on Idol — costing them commissions and their client. But Tyler, who is not named in the initial suit, says otherwise: “It is an understatement to say that I was very unhappy with the services and conduct of Allen Kovac. Among other things, he was disrespectful and rude to my business associates, insulted and verbally abused my fiancé, my lawyer, my family, my assistants, and my accountants,” he said in the declaration filed in LA Superior Court. Tyler announced in July that he was leaving American Idol after two seasons. – Read more at Deadline
Terry McDermott Discusses His The Voice Finals Glitch – Terry McDermott talks with AccessHollywood.com’s Laura Saltman about why he’s “disappointed” “The Voice” is almost over. Also, he explains the glitch that happened during his performance on the NBC reality series.
Simon Cowell Reacts to L.A. Reid’s ‘X Factor’ Exit, Bon Jovi Replacement Suggestion – “I have the utmost respect for Simon Cowell,” Reid said Thursday. “He is the very best, and I have had the opportunity to learn so much from him. Working with him on X Factor has been a once-in-a-lifetime experience. I’m honored to have sat on the panel with such incredible talent.” Cowell also spoke out for the first time on Reid’s impending exit, saying: “On a personal level, I’m going to miss him. On a business level, I’m also going to miss him.” – Read more at Hollywood Reporter
Demi Lovato Vows to Work with Fifth Harmony Post-‘X Factor’ – The teen quintet has already clicked with a Lovato hit, “Give Your Heart a Break,” and it’s likely their partnership will extend beyond the show. “I’m always open to collaborations,” Lovato said at an “X Factor” press conference on Monday afternoon. “I’d (work with) these girls to say thank you to them for things they’ve done for me.” The key selling point? “They’re such sweet, down-to-earth girls,” Lovato said. – Read more at Billboard
‘X Factor’: Simon Cowell on ‘Voice’ rivalry, ratings and L.A. Reid’s exit – As for the ratings question, Cowell makes it clear he believes running concurrent with NBC’s “The Voice” became an issue. “We were expecting there was going to be a problem with the ratings this year, not just with us but with everything, because it’s overkill,” Cowell explains. “Once ‘The Voice’ decided to go Monday, Tuesday and we were Wednesday, Thursday — I use the expression it’s like having 14 sugars in your coffee when you want two.” “I’ve done this for ten years,” Cowell continues. “The one thing that’s most important is the legacy you leave behind each year. The legacy we’re gonna leave behind is strong, not just with [Stevens, Sonenclar and Fifth Harmony] but also with artists like Emblem3. That’s what we’re judged on.” – Read more at Zap2it
The X Factor Season Finale Press Conference: The Judges Discuss L.A. Reid’s Departure, Declining Ratings & More – Simon Cowell talks about his contestant being the underdog this time around at “The X Factor” season finale press conference. Also, will the other judges miss L.A. Reid on the FOX reality series?
The Smash Season 2 Premiere: Frosty Feuds, Scandalous Setbacks and Other Observations – * Things between Ivy and Karen (played by Katharine McPhee and Megan Hilty) are as fr-fr-fr-frosty as ever, no thanks to Derek (Jack Davenport). (Seriously, there’s one Derek/Karen scene that will have you progressively screaming, “No…. No!… NO!” at the telly.) Will that change when the almost-Marilyn is afforded a chance to save Bombshell‘s bacon? And are Derek/Ivy not necessarily dunzo — this despite a sordid scandal that erupts around him and threatens his planned revival of a well-known, super-soulful ’70s musical? * It turns out the reviews for Bombshell‘s Beantown try-out were largely rousing — save for a chorus of damning digs aimed at one (and only one) person. – Read more at TV Line
Chris Colfer Gets Struck By Lightning – Chris Colfer tells Access how he started writing the screenplay to his new movie, “Struck By Lightning,” when he was still in high school and was inspired by his real life experiences.
Read more at Access Hollywood
“Facts Of Life” Golden Girl Finds Closure On “Survivor” – When Lisa Whelchel first arrived on Survivor Season 25’s Philippines retreat, the former teen star was given less chance of winning than Jeff Probst’s sea glass necklace. But the woman who once played America’s most notorious prime-time pampered princess defied the doubters, making it all the way to the show’s final council, where she ultimately finished in the top three and took home the “fan favorite prize” to boot. It was a stunning achievement for the 49-year-old mother of three, who has been largely absent from the public eye since Facts of Life went off the airwaves in 1988. To get to that last round, Whelchel not only had to outplay an army of contestants half her age, but very publicly grappled with the conflicts between her instinct to be honest, kind, and fair to all, and her desire to win the cutthroat game. – Read more at Buzz Feed