Beyonce, Foo Fighters, Rihanna, Carrie Underwood To Perform At Grammys
The Grammys may not have any writers, but the February 10 show will have BeyoncÃƒÆ’ ©. The former Destiny’s Child leader is among the first group of performers who’ve been confirmed for the ceremony, which recently got a commitment from the Writers Guild of America that it will not picket the 50th edition of music’s biggest night.
Also slated to perform is country superstar and former “American Idol” winner Carrie Underwood and the Foo Fighters, who will play their song “The Pretender” with an orchestra led by guest conductor John Paul Jones, bassist for the recently reunited Led Zeppelin.
The show will also feature what’s being billed as a “special segment” with Rihanna performing alongside a reunion of 1980s R&B/funk act the Time. A tribute to gospel music will bring together Mary J. Blige, Aretha Franklin, Israel and New Breed, Madison Bumblebees, the Clark Sisters and Trin-I-Tee 5:7.
‘The Color Purple’ ends run
The Broadway tuner adaptation of “The Color Purple” will shutter Feb. 24 after more than two years on the boards.
Show, which opened Dec. 1, 2005, recouped its $11 million investment in about a year and has grossed around $102 million in Gotham so far.
Tuner, which saw box office flag after its first year, reinvigorated sales last spring with the addition to the cast of “American Idol” alum Fantasia Barrino. The week the thesp began her stint in the show in April, grosses rocketed up by more than $365, 000 to nearly $1.2 million.
Her departure this month, however, precipitated a steep drop in sales (compounded by the usual post-holiday doldrums that affect all of Broadway), with week-to-week receipts dropping by nearly half (to $388, 936) after her final perf Jan. 6. Last week the show logged receipts of $477, 153.
‘Idol’ and Football Team Up to Push Fox Into the Ratings End Zone
The return of “American Idol” and a Giants-Packers game that clocked a crazy 54 million viewers cooked up Fox’s highest rated non-Super-Bowl week ever. That week includes three nights in which the network averaged more than 30 million viewers. And what with four months more of the can’t-kill-it-with-a-stick singing competition plus this year’s Super Bowl broadcast, Fox is on track to win the TV season among viewers of all ages for the first time in its history.
“American Idol.” About 33.4 million people settled in last Tuesday to watch the seventh-season debut of Fox’s improbable ratings behemoth. Which, sadly for Fox, is about 4 million shy of the sixth-season opener but, on the bright side, is about 6 million more people than watched ABC, CBS, NBC and CW combined in the same two-hour period. About 30.4 million viewers decided they could stomach a second night of the trademark lousy auditions last Wednesday. That fell nearly 7 million shy of last season’s Wednesday kickoff but was still enough people to again flatten the competition.
The Color Purple ‘ the Broadway musical based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Alice Walker ‘ will play its final performance Feb. 24 at the Broadway Theatre, producers announced Jan. 24.
Gary Griffin directed the musical featuring a score by pop writers Brenda Russell, Allee Willis and Stephen Bray with a book by Pulitzer Prize winner Marsha Norman. The Color Purple began previews on Broadway Nov. 1, 2005, and officially opened at the Broadway Theatre Dec. 1, 2005. It will have played 30 previews and 910 regular performances when it closes Feb. 24.
The Color Purple currently features Grammy Award winners Chaka Khan as Sofia and Bebe Winans as Harpo ‘ as well as “American Idol” finalist Lakisha Jones as the Church Soloist. Jones also plays the role of Sofia during matinee performances.
Ryan Seacrest producing Denise Richards reality show
Ryan Seacrest is producing a reality series about Denise Richards life, a show that been the focus of a court battle this week with her ex-husband Charlie Sheen.
Seacrest told OK! Magazine, …Weve been in talks about doing a series with her. I dont know if the kids would necessarily be involved. It would be about her, if we do this, and her life. And what she wants to do with it, with her career.
Ryan Seacrest promises to Bowl us over
Ryan Seacrest once played football.
Indeed, hard-core sports fans who may have been upset at the news that “American Idol” host and “E! News Live” anchor Ryan Seacrest would be hosting Fox’s live pregame Super Bowl XLII coverage Feb. 3 may feel better learning he’s no newcomer to the sport.
“I grew up playing football in a big football town and I am looking forward to the game, ” Seacrest told reporters on a conference call yesterday. “I’ve been following all the teams this season and I’ve been to a couple of games.”
C-17 pilot auditions for ‘American Idol’
A C-17 Globemaster III pilot with the 317th Airlift Squadron at Charleston Air Force Base recently lived out one of her dreams — to audition for “American Idol.”
Capt. Lyndsey Goodman, a Reserve pilot who has flown the half-million pound airlifter into combat zones in Iraq and Afghanistan, also sings at local nightclubs.
“I wanted to try out for ‘American Idol’ because I have been singing since I was a little girl, but I have been flying most of my adult life so I never really had the opportunity to go out and audition for something like this, ” Captain Goodman said. “When I found out they were coming to Charleston, I thought I should give it a shot.”
Singers Turn ‘American Idol’ into Platform for Abstinence
The teens aspiring to become the next “American Idol” for the 2008 season are vocal about more than just their passion for singing.
Potential stars like Amy Catherine Flynn, who got a green light from judges at the Knoxville, S.C., auditions on Wednesday, are making it no secret to the public that they support sexual abstinence.
When the 17-year-old Catholic High School student was asked to share something about herself, she said was the captain of the school’s dance team and a STARS (Students Teaching And Respecting Sexuality) panelist.
Flynn said she goes to schools to talk about abstaining from sex, drugs and alcohol.
Mormon Pop: American Idol
There are a few LDS singers who are going to Hollywood this season on American Idol. We all remember Carmen Rasmusen and Jon Peter Lewis from past seasons (among a few other almost-finalists). Both Carmen and Jon are gigging regularly and have recently released new albums. (Ive seen Carmen showcase in Nashville and perform locally, and I believe she got the goods for The Big Time).
For the new season, Southern Californian Brooke White got the thumbs up from all three judges after her …Ive-never-seen-an-R-rated movie audition in Pennsylvania (the song was …Like A Star). Watch the clip here.
American Idol – Has It Run Its Course? If so, Why?
American Idol is presenting the Seventh Season. The ratings have declined. There is speculation as to why. The producers have made changes in the past to increase its appeal. These changes have not always been fruitful. The reasons are most likely multifactorial. I will attempt to discuss some here.
One is the demographics involved. (This means the age groups that advertisers like to use.) Some of the demographic groups have been abandoned by advertisers with the result that some popular and well done programs have been cancelled. The people watching were not easily influenced to purchase the sponsors product. The older groups look for value much more and , for the most part, have little strict brand loyalty. The business of TV is to increase sales for the sponsor. Idol is old enough now that much of the initial audience has ‘graduated’ from the intended demographic. The sponsors want to appeal to the group with Ipods and mp3 players that are willing to pay to load them.
American Idol Trots Out Another Sexless Teenage Hopeful
Last night’s episode of American Idol–set in Charleston, S.C.–was pretty dire overall, with an overabundance of crap singers who didn’t even have good gimmicks. (The worst had to be the couple who allegedly met on the Idol message boards, if only because their story of troo love sounded like a very awkward way to plug the Web site.) A good chunk of the show was devoted to the young lady above, a 16-year-old dance team captain named Amy Catherine Flynn who’s active in her school’s pro-abstinence group. (Because, you know, the whole preaching-abstinence thing worked so well for Britney Spears et al.)
‘American Idol’ Finds Mediocrity In South Carolina, Gets Stingy With Golden Tickets
What a difference a day makes.
After Tuesday night’s stellar offering of belting and belly laughs, Wednesday’s “American Idol” fell flatter than Bo Bice’s career. Granted, the judges handed out an embarrassingly low number of Golden Tickets during their visit to Charleston, South Carolina, but a small talent pool is no excuse for bad television. Au contraire, it should result in great television! (See: “The Pussycat Dolls Present: The Search for the Next Doll.”)
So instead of doling out awards like I’ve been doing thus far this season, this recap is all about the demerits.
‘American Idol’: Behind the curtain
“American Idol” concluded its sixth hour in two weeks on Wednesday night, and of those 360 minutes, only a small fraction were devoted to actual music.
Flynn300 That may seem odd, seeing as how “Idol” is out to find our next pop star and all. But this is not a show about music. In fact, in these early Season 7 episodes, “Idol” has done little, if anything, to actually celebrate or promote pop music. Simon even went so far as to tell “Idol” lovebirds Randy Stark and Crystal Ortiz, a couple who met on the “Idol” message boards (hey guys!), to essentially not even sing for their families.
A dose of truth for the delusional, perhaps, but for a show about music, “Idol” has an amazing ability to shatter dreams, and to make one feel stupid for ever trying to sing in the first place. A lifetime passion? Destroyed in about 20 seconds — 20 seconds in which technique (the ability to hold a note and carry a tune) is held in higher regard than passion and personality.
American Idol: Opposite Day
This was one of those …American Idol episodes where I thought the vast majority of …bad contestants were better than the …good ones who got through.
Raysharde Henderson, the black Clay Aiken, didnt have a bad voice. He was just a little over the top, more like a black Richard Simmons. The Kellie Pickler townie had a decent country voice, even if she was a tad frightening. Plus, she did force Simon to utter the quote of the night, that he liked her down on her knees. And the perfunctory military contestant, Lyndsey Goodman, was one of the best singers of the night.
American Idol’s Mandisa Celebrates First Grammy Nomination and Treks Across U.S. On Winter Jam Tour
After a highly successful label debut (one of Sparrow Records fastest-selling new artists ever) with …True Beauty, and her first Christmas EP , American Idol own MANDISA is celebrating her first GRAMMY nomination and hit the road last week on the Winter Jam tour, performing before over 35, 000 people in the first four shows alone. She will trek across the U.S. through mid-March .
As one of just three idol alums to be nominated for a GRAMMY, Mandisa had this to say about her nomination: …Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that my debut cd would garner a Grammy nomination. I have all of the cds nominated in the same category as I, and absolutely love each of them. To be considered in the same crowd is very humbling for me. I know we hear it all the time, but it truly IS an honor just to be nominated.
Mandisa has faith in Winter Jam
The Winter Jam tour has hosted some of the biggest names in Christian music over the course of its dozen-plus outings. But this year, the tour may make more noise than ever before thanks to the presence of former “American Idol” contestant Mandisa, who made headlines during her run on the show two seasons ago for testifying to her faith in song and giving resident meanie judge Simon Cowell a piece of her mind when he made cracks about her weight.
The Grammy-nominated singer, who released her debut album, “True Beauty, ” and inspirational book, “IdolEyes, ” in 2007, will join a diverse lineup of Winter Jam artists that includes NewSong for the 13th consecutive year.
Idol Chatter: Carmen Opens Up About Hit TV Show
Editor’s note: Beginning Friday, “American Idol” finalist and Utahn Carmen Rasmusen will write a weekly column about this season’s show.
Five years after she was a top-six finalist, Carmen Rasmusen still gets excited about “American Idol.”
“To this day, when I hear that (theme) music, my tummy does a flip-flop, ” Rasmusen said.
And she hopes to share her excitement in a weekly column about the current season of “American Idol” a feature that debuts in today’s Deseret Morning News.
‘Idol’ star Phil Stacey stays true to his country
Phil Stacey has a laugh when noting who’s who on the lineup at this year’s Kiss Country Chili Cookoff Sunday in Pembroke Pines. Call it a reality-show greatest hits.
“We’ve got American Idol, Nashville Star and Star Search represented on that stage. Now, we have to find someone from America’s Got Talent.”
Maybe next year.
Call it ‘Surreal Life: Nashville’
In a Nashville music scene that rewards the youngest, hottest, cutest flavor-of-the-month, the mostly aging contestants on the new CMT reality show “Gone Country” don’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of making it as bona fide country music stars.
No matter how eagerly they yell “Yeehaw!” as they don cowboy hats and boots in tonight’s premiere, the Grand Ole Opry is probably not in the future for the likes of Carnie Wilson, Maureen “Marcia Brady” McCormick, or Twisted Sister frontman Dee Snider – let alone “Thong Song” warbler Sisqo, Julio Iglesias Jr., “American Idol” runner-up Diana DeGarmo, or Boston bad boy Bobby Brown. Tim and Faith have nothing to worry about.
’08 Oregon Jamboree headliners named
Sugarland, Randy Owen of Alabama, Joe Nichols and Trace Adkins have all been signed to appear at this year’s Oregon Jamboree.
The Jamboree announced its 2008 lineup Tuesday. Other artists scheduled to appear are Trent Tomlinson, Kelli Pickler, Rissi Palmer, Confederate Railroad and Phil Stacey.
Meet Debra Poneman, co-author of “Chicken Soup for the American Idol Soul, ” as she signs copies of her book at 2 p.m. Jan. 26 at Borders, 1700 Maple Ave., Evanston. Also appearing with Poneman will be former “American Idol” contestants Gina Glocksen and Jim Verranos. (847) 733-8852.