‘American Idol’ Standout Josiah Leming Inks A Record Deal, Calls Show ‘Glorified Karaoke’
When we last saw Josiah Leming, he was sleeping in his parents’ basement in Morristown, Tennessee, hammering out otherworldly tunes on a rickety old piano and licking his wounds from his recent “American Idol” ouster.
He was “the kid who slept in his car, ” the homeless scamp who cried buckets on a televised singing competition, the scrappy underdog with the deck stacked against him. He was a directionless, idealistic dreamer, the kind of guy you really want to see succeed but at the same time were relatively certain he wouldn’t. All you could really do was hope for the best.
Fast-forward three months. My, how things have changed.
Doubt not the power of ‘American Idol’
“American Idol’s” ratings might have fallen this just-ended season, but media planners and buyers see plenty of life left in the hit Fox talent show.
They believe it will still be the top show on broadcast next year, and again by very healthy margins, both in total audience and adults 18-49.
If “Idol” should decline at all, those declines will be in the range of what the show lost this year. This year the Tuesday and Wednesday editions combined slipped about 9 percent.
That’s the outcome of a poll of readers Media Life posted over the long holiday weekend, just after the show’s finale.
Asked if they thought the “Idol” phenomenon had peaked, readers were mixed.
Would-be ‘Idol’ contestant Josiah Leming still living out his musical dream
Some performers merely sing about life’s emotional roller coasters. Others ride them.
The improbable story of American Idol washout Josiah Leming ‘ the would-be contestant who was living out of his battered Mercury Topaz and intrigued judges by auditioning with an original tune ‘ is etched with both giddy excitement and unbearable sadness.
Last week, Leming, 19, stepped into the studio to begin work on his debut album for Warner Bros. He hopes to release it by the end of the year because his mother, Sharon, has terminal cancer.
“It’s a difficult balance between moving forward with my career here in Los Angeles, which makes my mom really happy, and trying to be with her as much as I can” back in Morristown, Tenn., Leming says. “I want her to be here when the album comes out.”
Sanjaya to Star in New Ad for Nationwide(R)
COLUMBUS, Ohio, BUSINESS WIRE — Nationwide announced today that the next star of the Life Comes at You Fast advertising campaign is Sanjaya Malakar, former contestant on “American Idol.” Sanjaya will follow in the footsteps of Kevin Federline, Fabio and MC Hammer, who appeared in previous Life Comes at You Fast commercials.
“I’m thrilled to star in one of Nationwide’s Life Comes at You Fast ads, because I really love the campaign, ” said Malakar. “My experience on American Idol was is a great example of how life really does come at you fast. The ad is a funny take on the serious subject of planning for retirement.”
In the spot, Sanjaya visits a monastery in India to seek advice and he is told that he needs a retirement plan, and some work on his hair.
David Cook Rocks the Big Apple
American Idol winner David Cook and runner-up David Archuleta arrive at a New York City airport and head over to their Big Apple hotel on Monday, Memorial Day.
Cook, 25, recently shared about his upcoming album: …Itll probably be a rock record. I just want to make a record that going to make the hair on your neck stand up. Even if it doesnt do well commercially, as long as I can put out a record I am proud of, that the goal right now. And hopefully the success will follow.
After American Idol David Archuleta Can Still Beat David at the Grammy’s and Beyond
Sure, David Cook pulled off that jaw dropper over David Archuleta on “American Idol, ” but David Archuleta can still beat David Cook by winning more showbiz awards in the future and by having a longer career.
Some people think David Cook has an edge right now because he’s more “cool” in that rocker way, but David Archuleta has a secret and maybe more powerful advantage: He’s a more romantic figure. Female fans ache for him. Even crazy ole Paula Abdul admitted getting “goosebumps” when he sang those I-gotta-have-you-or-I’m-gonna-die power ballads. In short, there’s an extraordinary, passionate connection between David Archuleta and female fans that’s obvious to see and I’m not convinced David Cook’s got the same thing going on.
Cook Won the Battle . . . Will Archuleta Win the War?
Reporter weighs in on Archuleta assets, but Cook edge still may have been his winning ticket.
While David Cook beat out loveable, 17-year-old David Archuleta by 12 million votes, crowning him this season American Idol, it is speculated that the loser may win bigger in the future. Los Angeles Times reporter Tom ONeil feels the younger David has what Cook is lacking ‘ the ability to seduce the audience.
While Cook is ingenuitive, with a rocker edge, and musical talent, Archuleta may fair better in the age-old congeniality category. Sources continue to praise his romantic angle ‘ the fact that he has what puts any male pop sensation on top of the charts . . . female adoration.
Pop Tarts: Sexist Society? Carrie Underwood Explains Why She Wants to Be Single
LOS ANGELES ‘ Carrie Underwood is certainly living the fairy-tale existence most young women can’t even dream about. She’s got the looks, the money and the career ‘ but while she doesn’t have the man, Underwood says she is more than happy to stay single.
“If I found something worth finding by now I would have made time for it, but right now I’m so busy I don’t need a boyfriend, ” she told Tarts. “This year is the year for me to be on the road and focus just on myself. That’s what I want.”
‹Sex and the City: Exactly what youre expecting
The other notable new addition to the proceedings is Jennifer Hudson as Louise, a recent transplant from St. Louis, who has come to New York looking for love. Her quiet wisdom and love of designer purses make her the ideal new assistant for Carrie.
While Hudson is just fine in her first screen appearance since winning an Oscar for her …Dreamgirls debut, the rest of the cast has the advantage of slipping back into characters they played for years on cable, and that comfort comes through in the performances. The leading quartet pings and zings as well as ever, and even second bananas like Stanford (Willie Garson) and Anthony (Mario Cantone) get their moment as well. (Candice Bergen returns briefly as Carrie editor at Vogue, delivering a brutally funny line that will be quoted in bridal shops for years to come.)
The Kingdom Assignment Foundation to Host 2nd Annual WELL DONE AWARDSÃƒ ¢’Å¾ ¢ Benefit at The Grove of Anaheim
The headliners for the evening include American Idol Chris Sligh (www.ChrisSligh.com), who recently released his new CD …Running Back to You. Chris will debut the song written for the WELL DONE AWARDSÃƒ ¢’Å¾ ¢. In addition, appearing are inspirational speaker of …Life without Limbs (www.LifeWithoutLimbs.org) founder, Nick Vujicic (recently featured on ABC 20/20), Adam Christing (www.adamchristing.com), founder of …Clean Comedians, and performing Gospel singer, Zelda Mercado, Mother of this year American Idol contestant Syesha Mercado. Also, Darren King, Worship Leader at Crossline Church (www.CrossLineChurch.com) and backup Hip Hop Dancers (who have been featured on several dance reality shows) will liven up the stage.
NEW ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: Phil Stacey
It was a tough climb, not a fast track, that Phil Stacey followed on the way to his place among the Top 6 “American Idol” finalists in 2007. Diverging paths confronted him; by following his conscience and sense of responsibility, he sometimes took the tougher road – but those decisions invariably strengthened him along the way.
His ascent began on rock-solid ground, as the son of a pastor. Moving from one congregation to the next, through Kentucky, Ohio and Kansas, Rev. Stacey encouraged his children to embrace music along with faith as sources of stability and assurance in their mobile lives. As a result, Phil joined with his brother and sister to form The Stacey Trio, whose victory in a statewide talent contest led to his first crossroads.
Reality show judges put on hot seat
At the ratings monster that is “American Idol, ” disrespect is both a trademark and a delicious expectation. “Dancing’s” Len has nothing on the archetypal snarky-wit Brit that is Simon Cowell.
Lo these many seasons in, however, Cowell is not as mean as he used to be — not like back in the day when he described one singer as looking like a “bush baby.”
Depending on your taste, Paula Abdul is either unwatchable or you absolutely can’t take your eyes off her. She simpers and flirts and waxes on about contestants’ “souls” and “spirits” and “being authentic to who they really are.”
She might not be Carrie Ann, but she has her own “X” factor that is the element of Imminent Train Wreck Meltdown. She may or may not be functional on any given day — and she might not even know quite what day it is.
And then there’s Randy “Pitchy, dawg” Jackson, who is just … there. He’s a laid-back, wannabe hip-hopster. Put it all together and it works.
Ready to face the music
Seasoned ballroom-dancing champ and So You Think You Can Dance choreographer Jean Marc GÃƒÆ’ ©nÃƒÆ’ ©reux’s enthusiasm is just infectious. We’re sitting in a downtown coffee shop and it’s lucky he’s had only one cafÃƒÆ’ © au lait because, with any more caffeine in his system, this guy would just go spinning across the room.
Actually, he had just been spinning and twirling, breaking out some stellar Fred Astaire-like moves a few moments earlier on Peel St., to the bemusement of the folks strolling by.
GÃƒÆ’ ©nÃƒÆ’ ©reux is getting worked up talking about the growing popularity of all forms of dance, partly powered by Hollywood movies like Dance With Me and Shall We Dance, which both featured performances by GÃƒÆ’ ©nÃƒÆ’ ©reux. But it’s So You Think You Can Dance, the American Idol-like contest/reality show from Idol creator Simon Fuller, that has really taken the art form to the top of the what’s-hot list.
TV review: Paul Potts has got talent
Only a grade-A churl could fail to be tickled pink by the footage of Paul Potts appearing for the first time on Britain’s Got Talent – now a YouTube staple, and source of inspiration for tubby guys the world over.
The rest of this journey, from heavily in-debt cellphone salesman to international opera star, was the subject of the highly enjoyable Paul Potts – By Royal Command (Prime, Sunday). What’s not to like?
An unassuming battler, chronically under-confident about his singing talent, puts himself on to a TV talent show on the toss of a coin, and steals not only the show, but everyone’s hearts.
Over the moonwalk
A MICHAEL Jackson tribute act and a moon-walking dog stormed into the final of Britain Got Talent last night.
Unlikely dance duo Signature gave the Jackson hit Thriller a Bollywood edge, which judges agreed was one of the ITV1 show most original performances.
Judge Piers Morgan told Suleman Mirza, 29, and Madhu Singh, 34: …You are two ordinary guys doing ordinary day jobs and by nights you do this crazy, crazy act.
Simon Cowell added: …This is one of the best acts because what you have is something so important ‘ you have originality.
Critic’s choice – Britain Got Talent (ITV1)
Britain Got Talent (ITV1)
The current second series of Britain Got Talent cant claim the same must-see compulsiveness as last year first run. But, as it starts its nightly run of live shows tonight, it still the UK top-rated non-soap TV show ‘ as well as being the one most likely to leave you with a fond smile on your face.
Tonight line-up will only be confirmed just before transmission, but will likely include audition show favourites Kate and Gin (the 16-year-old girl with the dog that can dance to the James Bond theme) ‘ who Simon Cowell, one of the BGT judges, has described as the favourites to win.
So You Think You Can Dance Guinness Record Setting Dance Dance Revolution Event
When it comes to auditioning before “So You Think You Can Dance” executive producer and judge Nigel Lythgoe, it helps to stand out. “Whenever you can attach a label to somebody, you stand a chance of being successful, revealed Lythgoe during an interview last week. …So well say ‘farmboy, ‘ ‘rollerskate girl, ‘ ‘big-boob girl, ‘ ‘small-bum girl, ‘ you know, anything.
But on the season premiere of “So You Think You Can Dance on Thursday night, being “underwear guy” wasn’t such a good thing. When a dancer took to the stage in tighty-whiteys and nothing more, Nigel was too distracted to judge and rejected the scantily clad contestant. “It was a bold statement, ” admitted the dancer after hearing the news. “I’ll try something more ‘ uh ‘ clothed next year.”
And underwear guy was hardly the only stand-out at auditions. Returning rejects “Gold Inferno” and “Sex” also took to the stage again Thursday ‘ and got rejected anew. The rejects were as wily as ever when they got sent home. “They’re racist against tall people, ” insisted one especially livid reject.