Derrell and Terrell were on the morning show of Atlanta's WVEE-FM on January 23, where they revealed that they had been dumped from the show. According to host Frank Ski, the two were in a positive mood, singing in the studio and apologizing to American Idol fans for the mistakes they'd made.Listening to that radio interview were people from the So So Def record label -- and before they left the radio station, the two were offered a contract!|W|P|113846749093713367|W|P|Brittenum Twins Out On Bail, Getting Offers|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org
Is Clay gay? And, regardless -- why would people care? I really don’t know, and really don’t care . . . but, recently the level of this “debate” of sorts has reached a level where the talk can’t be ignored, and it would be unfair for me not to cover it in a professional manner that’s respectful of the claims, and of the Idol in question.
Since American Idol made Clay Aiken a household name, people have been wondering and asking that question. They ask so much, that it’s nearly part of every biographical profile – including Wikipedia's. Rolling Stone magazine asked him the question directly in 2003, and he denied it, but that hasn’t stopped the stories and claims against his “straightness” that are starting to emerge in the mainstream media.
This year, a former
This is the tame version of what happened, and as was covered by the online version of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer (yeah, it’s a real newspaper). The nastier version initially published by gossiper Billy Masters stated that Paulus also claimed that he could back his story with proof, namely the face cloth that Clay supposedly cleaned himself with after the encounter. Yeah . . . the Monica Lewinsky flashbacks are appropriate.
An earlier claim also made its rounds on the internet: that Clay had allegedly hired pornstar/escort Mario Cruz for a rendezvous, but the blog that initially made that claim is no longer up and running – only a remnant of the claim is left in a gawker.com article.
That’s it for the red and juicy, but there are the circumstantial claims, the “he-wouldn’t-do-that-if-he-were-straight” claims – and these are where you really begin to wonder. According to an article on realityblurred.com, Clay was a frequent persistent caller to openly gay Reichen Lehmkuhl (Amazing Race 4) while the latter was a housemate and cast member on Kill Reality, a pseudo-reality show on E! Television. Really! Now, if just that fact were true, how many straight men do you know who have gay “best-buds?” Friends – yeah, maybe – but, not phone-queens like the aforementioned article suggested.
And of course, there’s the one where he hired his very-gay personal hairdresser to be a dancer on one of his tours. So what, you ask? How many cosmetologists do you know that also happen to be professionally-trained dancers? Maybe in soap opera universe – but, on planet earth, it is still a strange coincidence. Obviously, he was given a big career break by Mr. Aiken – perhaps it was just out of friendship, and it quite possibly was just nothing more than that. For a straight self-proclaimed Christian, Mr. Aiken does have a lot of really close gay friends.
So, what does it all mean? It really doesn’t mean a whole lot – at least not to me. If Clay is, then there are really big financial reasons why he wouldn’t admit to it – the biggest reason being that his all-American mostly-white Christian fan base would abandon him immediately. He’d have to sing in karaoke bars to pay the rent, or teach special ed. I’m sure he prefers the lifestyle that he’s become accustomed to, so “either way,” I’m only surprised that some continue to wonder why Aiken’s answer to those questions would ever be anything other than “No.”
If their advice was asked for, I’m sure that many closeted gay music stars have explained to him just how to keep his secret life secret – even when the truth should obvious and apparent to everyone. But, I give too much credit where it is not due. Liberace, after all, was never officially gay until the day after he died.
If Clay is gay, then more power to him. If he’s not, then that’s okay, too. Being gay won’t make him evil, or sinful, a moral failure, etc., etc. – he’ll just be a human being like the rest of us. It doesn’t matter to me, but it does matter to a heck of a lot of people, and of all the shame that such a revelation could possibly bring to Mr. Aiken, the greatest shame of all should be to those people who would hate him for just being who he is – gay or straight.|W|P|113842332672171575|W|P|The Oh! of "No" -- or, Why Clay Isn't Gay|W|Pemail@example.com
Why is Bo losing weight? Bo talks about losing up to 35 lbs over the last several months since his time on American Idol 5. Reason for the weight loss, according to Starpulse News Blog that covered his Access Hollywood interview?
"Wow, yeah, I've lost a little bit of weight. That's what happens when you have to get gastrointestinal surgery*." (referring to his stomach illness over the last year)
Carrie’s CBSnews.com Interview
CBS’s news website interviewed Carrie Underwood, last year’s American Idol winner, last week. She’s full of good things to say about the show, a change considering how some winners have been distancing themselves, and says this about the new season:
"I watched the first episode! I'm looking forward to seeing when people get narrowed down. I know how nervous they all are. I think it's awesome a show can be on top for so long . . .”
Click HERE to view and listen to a clip from her interview last year on CBS’ The Early Show when she sang “Inside Your Heaven" following it’s release. (realplayer required)
Brittenum Twins Barred from
While Terrell and Derrell Brittenum may have wowed the judges in their American Idol audition, the producers always have the last word: and their word to the alleged lawbreakers is “Don’t come to
I auditioned with the “And I Am Tell You” in front of them*. The “Lady Marmalade” was a SONG that was REQUIRED BY THE PRODUCER, for us, "the contestants" to learn within an hour, to perform in front of Nigel, the producer, NOT RANDY SIMON AND PAULA, as they made it seem. Also, furthermore the auditions did not consist of "one day" of auditioning, there were 3 auditions previous to the audition leading to Randy, Simon, and Paula.*a reference to Randy, Paula, and Simon According to that article, a few other things seemed weird, such as the "Hollywood" ticketing of David Hoover, the bouncing, animal-loving, shoeless, tall guy. Reality TV Mag looks into it and discovers that David Hoover, aka Mr. Dubious, happens to sing a lot better than his performance on TV (maybe nerves?), and ponders as to whether or not the judges were aware of his previous work highlighted on his website (complete with CD samples). So, how much is real, and how much is fake? How much did they know, and when did they know it? As Arsenio used to say, it's just one of those things that make you go, "Hmmmmmmm!" Let the Senate sub-committee hearings begin!|W|P|113808796033875224|W|P|Just How "Real" are the Auditions?|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org
Clarkson Nixes Bad Press Clarkson’s publicist responded to media reports that she’s refusing to allow material on the 5th season of the show, with Simon Cowell joining in on the condemnation of her supposed snub.
So what happened? The publicist stated that there was no refusal, that the two sides were in standard negotiations over the broadcasting of her licensed music, and that Kelly was “happy to hear her song, Since U Been Gone on American Idol. . .” according to a report on Billboard.com.
Sounds good to me, so why the fuss? Perhaps a little pressure from the boys at the Fox show to make the negotiations go their way, perhaps?
Idol Attracts Record Viewers 35 million people tuned into American Idol Tuesday night, their best premiere yet and Fox’s highest ratings “ever for entertainment programming in total viewers and its second-best numbers in adults 18-49.” (Billboard)
Jessica Sierra Attracts Stalker Jessica Sierra, (10th place, year four), was surprised to discover that one of her fans meant her harm: in the form of multiple threatening messages on her voice mail, and “showing up at her grandmother's Florida house uninvited,” according to a report filed by the Miami Herald. The man was charged, and arrested.
Tennessee Twins (Year Five) In Jail So, I guess this means they didn't survive Hollywood, a segment yet to be aired on American Idol 5. Instead of progressing to another round, Terrell and Derrell Brittenum have been arrested for buying a car using another man's identity last June, according to a report filed by Canada.com. Let the Year Five Scandals begin!|W|P|113769805343146014|W|P|Idols in the News (1/19/06)|W|Pemail@example.com
"I think that by ignoring the show you're ignoring the audience who put you there. No matter how talented Kelly Clarkson is, she would not be in the position she's in now without winning this show. And forget the way she feels about us or the producers or anybody else, or the terrible songwriters she alleges she was with which sold her millions of records. It's the public who bothered to pick up the phone to vote for her. If she refuses to give songs to be used on the show, it's like saying to every person who voted for you, `you know what? Thank you. I'm not interested in you anymore.'"While I can certainly understand their frustration, I wonder what Kelly's side to this is? Surely it's not as arrogant as AI's producers are making it out to be. And, if they were so great, why were Kelly, Clay, and then Mario Vazquez so eager to unload them at the first opportunity (the last two requiring legal help to do so)?|W|P|113760674907701597|W|P|Kelly's Still Refusing . . . Part 2|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org
"Not willing to take chances, Fox moved late last year to secure up to six more seasons of the program. A recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission notes the network is on the hook for $99.5 million in license fees to CKX Inc. for the next four seasons, which are guaranteed, and then $77 million for another two years, assuming "Idol" gets the ratings at which automatic renewals kick in."Discussing fame itself, he says:
"The competitors--even "Idol" winners Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard, Fantasia Barrino and Carrie Underwood--come and go as far as their talents take them. The show has proven it is bigger than any of them."Regardless of who the 5th season official winner is, it's obvious that the richest and most popular will always be the show itself.|W|P|113735438972737387|W|P|The Real American Idol|W|Pemail@example.com
Constantine Maroulis (solo) – spring/summer ‘06
Mario Vazquez – early ‘06
Vonzell Solomon – March ‘06
Anthony Fedorov – late summer ‘06
Nadia Turner – summer ‘06
"In this season of conflict, there also appears to be some potential problems with past contestants. In regards to Kelly Clarkson, Lythgoe said “it appears that Kelly isn’t clearing some of her music for American Idol which is very strange.” Lythgoe went on to add that he wasn’t sure if Kelly was aware of this and that he felt things would be worked out."Let's see: in the season four finale, the executive producers decided it would be best to do Saturday Night Live skits to exonerate one host of possible extracurricular activities with a particular Idol contestant, and mock those who tried out and couldn't sing ala' Gong Show style. I don't know . . . maybe they could have had a more professional finale, featuring past winners, all of whom were working their asses off to make a career? It seems to me that the whole point of the show is to sell the idea that "you can be a star," and part of that could be highlighting the careers of those who've gone on before . . . but, maybe I'm wrong. The highlight of last year's finale was Carrie and Bo -- the rest of it was elephant manure. So, I'm not surprised that a contestant who no longer needs the show doesn't want to participate . . . number one, she's not asked to participate in a way that promotes her career (wasn't the last time she sang on the show season-friggin'-two???), and number two . . . the producers keep upping the Gong Show gimmick. And secondly, the whole world knows about the draconian contracts . . you know, the reason Mario quit? Maybe she feels she's paid enough, and Americans generally don't appreciate the whole British concept of eternal subservience . . . we're more quid-pro-quo, and it doesn't seem that they've scratched her back in a very long time. But, I can't wait to see the show anyway . . . but, if a producer happens to read this: less cowbell, okay?|W|P|113721353325702179|W|P|Kelly Won't Clear Music for Idol|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org
"toy(ed) with contestants about whether they're in the winning or losing group as they nervously wait for their results each week."Nigel also said to expect more coverage of contestant infighting (it won't be edited out this year -- just the curse words), and to see more of the judge's spats. I dunno . . . to me, I know they showed the one fight between Simon and Paula last year, but I'm not sure I'm interested in Extreme Idol -- I kinda like American Idol myself. But that's just me. Also reported, they will not change the often tinkered with semi-finals/finalist format from last year. It will be boys against the girls among the semi-final 24, with the final twelve being 6 boys and 6 girls. I think that part worked great, but I still miss the "wild cards," since it was a benefit to a few people (Clay Aiken, the most notable).|W|P|113712282227925869|W|P|Lean, Meaner American Idol|W|Pemail@example.com
American Idol has made more music stars than any other talent show in entertainment history. Alumni from this show have sold more albums, and their tunes have hit more radio waves, and made it on more play and sales charts than any other “new artist” engine out there. Anyone who has made it to the semi-finals of that show has a greater chance of a show-biz career than just trying to get an audition with a music executive on their own, or by appearing on other talent-search productions.
IdolsRising.com exists to check out just how that’s all going for the former winners, finalists, and semi-finalists of the show. We’ve researched each and every one of them, created a personal profile for those who’ve found some success (no matter how little), and have ranked them according to their celebrity power and success!
Our ranking categories include:
IdolsRising.com is tracking the careers of all the contestants of American Idol who’ve at least made it to the semi-finals, regardless of how they place, or whether they were removed from the show. IdolsRising has four charts to do this with, and for former contestants who are on the most important three, they will each have their own entry, explaining how and why they’re there, and how they did on the show.
Each entry will list their qualifying information. Such information includes record sales, air play, TV appearances, movie parts, etc. What it will not list is their appearances on American Idol during the season in which they participated as a contestant, or on any media where they were promoting their career, or discussing their time on American Idol. TV appearances, for example, are limited to shows where the former contestant appeared as a character in a series or movie, comedy or drama, or as a contestant in a TV game or non-AI reality show. Talk shows or news programs aren’t applicable at all, unless the former contestant is performing work as an anchor, host, correspondent, etc. Qualifying information will also not include prior show business work (before their time on the show) in any industry.
Music work history will include any albums, singles, compilations, and videos that are made for general sale to the public. Home-made tracks or videos that don’t qualify for radio play, or are only available by download are not applicable. TV shows and movies must have been broadcast or transmitted to the general public via broadcast, cable, or satellite networks, or through theaters, or for sale as DVDs. Work that has not been broadcast or transmitted, or has not yet been published or released, will not be used as criteria for our rating purposes.
Artists or fans cannot pay to have a former contestant’s rating changed or improved, or sponsor their listing. To prevent any perception of favoritism, former contestants of American Idol and fan clubs/sites for these former contestants may not purchase advertising for this website.
IdolsRising.com will also serve to commentary and opinion on the show, it’s contestants and former contestants.|W|P|113661428212857896|W|P|About this Blog|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org
The Top Ten: this list categorizes the overall celebrity status of the top ten former contestants based on sales and other assorted ratings. Each former contestant is ranked numerically according to his position of relative celebrity status and power compared to the others on the list.
So, how do you categorize them? By using data from the music, movie, television, and radio industry to ascertain how popular the former contestants are and have been. Since this data is naturally fluid, our rankings will be as well, especially when another artist beats their success.
The work categorized is the work listed under each artists entry, and only the work performed after their time on the show will be considered – not show-biz work they did before. Work will also not consist of tour dates, musical appearances on TV shows, or any sort of promotional work done to promote their artistic endeavors. Appearances as a contestant on American Idol do not count as work that can be categorized, nor will albums or singles recorded by contestants while they were still part of the show.
What if you miss something? Currently, God and the multitude of other omniscient entities are not part of our fact-finding staff, so if you know something about a particular artist that we haven’t included, simply reply to the relevant post, and inform us. If it’s relevant, and we can verify it independently, we’ll use it on our next applicable update.
Hey, can I write for Idols Rising? Sure; but first you’ll have to meet the following criteria: 1) You love to spend your time writing about a topic you’re insanely bananas about for absolutely free (that means it’ll be “volunteer work,” you won’t get paid), 2) You’ll have to already be a participating reader, which means sending in corrections by posting/email, or digging up research on contestants we didn’t even know were now singing on the Carnival Cruise Lines, etc., and 3) We’re kinda particular – we give preference to current (and successful) bloggers, message board moderators/administrators, web-masters, etc. (i.e. people with verifiable internet “detective,” journalistic, and/or web content/management skills), not to AI fans who simply want to tell the world, “Hey, I watched the show last night, and I really liked it! No wait; I really liked it!”
If that’s all you wanna do, simply reply to any post . . . we love fan mail.
So, what makes you so special? Well, first; I love American Idol . . . no wait, I really love American Idol. I know: it’s insane, it doesn’t create world peace, and it certainly doesn’t jive with my politics . . . but, I can’t turn it off.
Plus, I have the experience listed in the FAQ before. In 2001, I created a message board network for former members of a particular religious sub-sect, which has since evolved into a non-profit organization, working now as a support and recovery network for people who felt manipulated or abused by that sect.
What is your affiliation with American Idol? We are not affiliated with American Idol, Fox TV, Freemantle Media,19 Productions, J Records, or any of the companies affiliated with that show, or its sponsors. We are simply an information, ranking and review service, and do not intend to infringe on any copyright, trademark, or other registered product, symbol, or insignia owned by any company associated with the show or its sponsors.|W|P|113661330717931184|W|P|FAQs|W|Pemail@example.com
And then, Clay opened his mouth . . . and sang. His voice was everything he said that it would be, and the judges quickly forgot his “image problem.”
Clay placed a very close second to that year’s winner, Ruben Studdard, who also suffered from the same “image problem,” and both slammed the airways and the sales charts with their singles – with Clay not only besting Studdard, but also Kelly Clarkson’s debut (the first champ) on the charts. Clay’s single went on to be the fastest selling single since Elton John’s Diana tribute (Candle in the Wind 1997), while his album became the fastest-selling debut of a new artist in ten years.Clay is currently #2 on our Top Ten list of most successful former American Idol contestants.
4.1 IdolsRising.com Score Music Albums: Measure of a Man (2003) 2.7 million copies in US (double platinum) Merry Christmas With Love (2004) 1.2 million copies in US Singles: Bridge over Troubled Waters (2003) platinum The Way/ Solitaire (2004) 322,000 sold Television Scrubs (NBC), as Kenny in one episode (2005). Ed, (TBS) as Himself (2004) A Clay Aiken Christmas, NBC (2004) - featuring Barry Manilow, Yolanda Adams, and Megan Mullally
Awards: American Music Awards 2003 – Fan’s Choice Award, winner Billboard Awards 2003 – Besting Selling Single, Best Selling Christian Album (won both)
2005 – The Joyful Noise Tour 2005 (36 cities in November, December)
The Jukebox Tour (26 cities July through September)
2004 -- The Joyful Noise Tour (28 cities in November, December) The Not a Tour Tour (50 cities in July through September) The Independent Tour (w/ Kelly Clarkson, February through April)
Bio (Wikipedia)Official Site
Fan sites (the best) Clay Aiken Official Fan Club http://clayonline.sparkart.com/ Finding Clay Aiken http://www.findingclayaiken.com/ The Clayboard http://p071.ezboard.com/btheclayboard Clay Aiken Fan http://www.clayaikenfan.com/ (feel free to suggest sites dedicated to Clay or Clay fans)|W|P|113616913554833209|W|P|Clay Aiken|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org