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Archive for December, 2009

Kelly Clarkson at the Loft for Q100 concert December 14

Kelly knew every time she placed the mike into the audience, we'd know the words! CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Kelly knew every time she placed the mike into the audience, we’d know the words! CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Kelly Clarkson gave a lucky 400 or so Q100 fans a mini-concert tonight at the Loft in Midtown.

Clarkson complained of the heat in the tiny venue, waving her hands in front of head between songs. But she was in good spirits, kept noting how she didn’t need to sing because the audience was doing it for her. Her vocals were about 90 percent there, a little raspy. She hit most of her notes, but went an octave lower for the big note on “Since U Been Gone.”

She opted for “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” as her Christmas tune and chose “Chivas” as her deep cut (which our regular Kelly&CarrieFan requested in the front row!). Here are more photos taken by our Robb Cohen.

Here are the six songs she sang:

“I Do Not Hook Up”

“Since U Been Gone”

“Already Gone”

“I’ll Be Home For Christmas”

“Chivas” (a rarity she hadn’t sung in awhile)

“My Life Would Suck Without …

Continue reading Kelly Clarkson at the Loft for Q100 concert December 14 »

Kelly Clarkson doing a free gig for Q100 tonight at the Loft

Kelly clarkson hotIdols such as Jason Castro, Kris Allen and Jordin Sparks are doing radio concerts this month.

Kelly Clarkson will be at the free Q100 Loft concert tonight. (I’ll be covering it.) Sparks will be the sold-out Star 94 Jingle Jam Thursday featuring Justin Bieber, the Fray and Leona Lewis, too. I expect to make that one, too. Based on what they did in New York at the Z100 Jingle Jam, Bieber will sub out for Chris Brown to sing “No Air” with Sparks. Kris Allen, Allison Iraheta and Adam Lambert were there, too.

Based on sales and airplay, Kelly Clarkson ranked No. 14 for the year as artist of the year, according to Billboard. (Atlanta’s T.I. landed at no. 8; Georgia’s own Zac Brown Band came in at No. 20.) Taylor Swift was No. 1.

-I’ll tape the Jennifer Hudson special on ABC for sure tonight and will recap for tomorrow. I have a sense there won’t be any wacky skits.

-Poor Ruben Studdard. He drew fewer than 150 people to a Monroe, Mich. cancer benefit concert.

“I’m disappointed,” …

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Ellen DeGeneres will hit Hollywood week next month

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The minute my colleague passed that Esquire item yesterday to me, I knew it would get a big reaction. 200-plus comments! But alas, it’s now Friday and I need to feed you more “Idol” news. I’ve scanned the usual suspects and there isn’t much going on at all. So it’s just little bits now. I’ll add something more if anything pops up but all is quiet that I can tell:

- Ellen DeGeneres begins here fourth-judge duties, replacing Paula Abdul, next month, when the Hollywood Week semifinalists are taped. Normally, that portion of “Idol” would have already been taped in November but “Idol” had to accommodate Simon Cowell’s busy schedule. We won’t see Ellen until February since the first month of “Idol” is all auditions, starting January 12.

- Fergie will host the taped West Coast proceedings for ABC’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest and Dick Clark. Atlantan Keri Hilson is among the performers on that part of the show. No “Idol” alums have been named but the live East Coast …

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Carrie Underwood disses Atlanta in an Esquire story

AP: At a pre-Grammy party in 2009.

AP: At a pre-Grammy party in 2009.

One of my colleagues, scanning the Web, found this Esquire.com interview with Carrie Underwood.

In it, the Oklahoma native and massively big country star makes a cryptic statement about Atlanta:

Atlanta? Tough town. It’s hard to get people to show up for anything. What do people do there?

I’m not sure what she means. I know she’s been here a few times to do concerts. The one I went to last, in which she co-headlined with Keith Urban in 2008, was sold out. I mean, we certainly showed up to Gwinnett Arena!

The first leg of her 2010 “Play On” concert tour conveniently skips Atlanta.

One blogger below notes that she has been to a couple of Thrashers games when her boyfriend on the Ottawa team is in town. That may not have left a good impression.

This gawker blogger notes that some of her other answers come off kind of sad e.g.

As you step off that stage, you’re pretty much alone.
My cell phone is my best friend. It’s my lifeline to the outside …

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Adam Lambert defends himself again, this time on ABC’s ‘The View’

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Three cancellations later on ABC and Barbara Walters and “The View” get Adam Lambert on. It just aired:

“Does it bother you that people are afraid of you to go live?” Walters asked.

“It was a crazy performance. I got carried away. I got caught up in the moent. It wasn’t meant to be an announcement that this was going to be me all the time,” he said.

He said his dad thought he should apologize. He said he isn’t going to apologize for it.

“This is not American Idol anymore. This is my career. Like I’ve said, I’m not a babysitter. My job is not to take care of your children.”

One thing he’ll change: “I’ll stay more consistent between rehearsal and performance.”

Lambert’s album “For Your Entertainment” dropped 74 percent from 198,000 to 51,000. It had the biggest drop among the top 200 albums. Allison Iraheta’s album opened at 32,000.

Lambert’s latest single “Whataya Want From Me” is up to No. 49 on the top 40 charts with 662 spins, up from 337 spins a week earlier, according to …

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Daniel Powter top ‘one-hit wonder’ of decade, Jessica Sierra’s baby

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Remember Daniel Powter’s sing-songy “Bad Day” song, spurred into “big hit” land by season five of “American Idol”? Powter’s song was the “exit” song every time someone got eliminated. It has not aged well.

It was No. 1 for five weeks in 2006. Powter never returned to the top 100. It was also ranked as the top one-hit wonder of the decade by billboard.com.

Bo Bice was another one who landed on the list with his version of the atrocious “Inside Your Heaven,” which landed at No. 2. Although “Real Thing” cracked the top 20 of the top 40 charts, Billboard is basing this on the Hot 100. “Real Thing” peaked there at No. 56, so it isn’t counted as a “hit.”

Others who qualfied in one-hit wonder land include Gnarls Barkley (featuring Atlanta’s Cee-lo), Atlanta’s D4L (with the goofy and ultimately irritating “Laffy Taffy”), former (and possibly current) Atlantan Blu Cantrell (”Hit’Em Up Style”), MIMS, Crazy Town (”Butterfly”) and James Blunt (”You’re Beautiful”).

- Jessica Sierra, …

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Carrie Underwood’s Christmas special

CREDIT: Fox

CREDIT: Fox

Wow. I forgot to tape the Carrie Underwood Holiday special on Fox last night. I was playing tennis and came home and never turned on the TV. Shame on me! (The Jennifer Hudson special on ABC next Monday night is now set on my DVR!)

So I’m scanning YouTube for clips. Saw the Clark Brothers (now Sons of Sylvia) with Carrie. Someone taped David Cook’s “Lie,” which is really quite good. Too bad his duet with Carrie “Why Can’t This Be Love” was cut due to licensing issues (I guess Van Halen doesn’t need the money.).

Carrie’s done “O Holy Night” before but it’s always effective:

So you may have seen her sing “Cowboy Casanova” on the CMAs and the AMAs. Now it’s three times in a month on primetime TV! I did like her outfit the best this time around. And I think she sang this one the cleanest. This is the opening eight minutes, which included some pseudo moments from “Idol” 2005. Great cameo by Bo Bice, too, at 6:22.

Here she is singing her biggest hit “Before He Cheats,” …

Continue reading Carrie Underwood’s Christmas special »

EW gives ‘best of the decade’ props to ‘American Idol,’ Simon Cowell, Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson; Adam Lambert going on ‘The View’

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Entertainment Weekly named Simon Cowell one of the magazine’s 15 favorite entertainers of this past decade.

His best decision? “To put another music show on — when I did ‘X Factor.’ I didn’t want to be tied down to one format. I was told by everyone that it couldn’t work. Once that became a hit, I had the confidence to launch a third show, which was ‘Got Talent.’ ”

His worst? The “Scary Movie 3″ cameo. “I’ll never forget the premiere and dying in my seat when the movie came on. I’ve never been so embarrassed in my life.”

He joined Johnny Depp, Tina Fey, Peter Jackson (”Lord of the Rings”), Jon Stewart, Oprah Winfrey, Justin Timberlake, Beyonce, J.K. Rowling, Sarah Jessica Parker and the women of Sex and the City, Pixar’s John Lasseter, Will Smith, J.J. Abrams (”Lost,” “Alias,” “Fringe”), Steve Jobs and Meryl Streep. That’s estimable company.

EW also named 100 great movies, TV shows, albums, books, characters, scenes, episodes, songs, dresses, music videos and trends of the …

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Michael Sarver gets a record deal

From "Idols Live" tour this past summer. Credit: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Just days after Lil Rounds signs with Bungalow Records, Michael Sarver too has nabbed a record deal:

Los Angeles, CA–Dream Records/Universal Music Group announced today the signing of American Idol’s Top 10 finalist of the 2009 season MICHAEL SARVER with plans to release Sarver’s debut country music CD in the spring of 2010. Sarver’s first single from the new album titled “You Are,” will be released nationally and on itunes this coming Tuesday, December 8. Michael is currently available for interviews in support of the upcoming singles and his current Holiday Tour with other A.I. finalists.

A bonus track, “Cinderella Girl,” will be made available on itunes along with “You Are” – the song which he recently performed live for L.A.’s homeless and needy at the Los Angeles Dream Center, which owns Dream Records, a non-profit organization that provides shelter, education, job training, and other services to thousands in the L.A. area and nationally.

I liked …

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Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Mandisa nominated for Grammys; ABC runs from Adam Lambert again

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Three female “Idol” alums got Grammy nominations Wednesday night: Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood and Mandisa.

Kelly’s “All I Ever Wanted” was named in the pop vocal album category with Black Eyed Peas, Colbie Caillat, the Fray and Pink. Her singles did not receive any noms.

Kelly has four previous Grammy nominations and two wins (best pop vocal album with “Breakaway” and best female pop performance with “Since U Been Gone” in 2006).

Carrie Underwood’s “Just a Dream” received a best female country performance against Miranda Lambert, Lee Ann Womack, Taylor Swift (of course) and Martina McBride. She has won this category three years in a row for “Jesus, Take the Wheel,” “Before He Cheats” and “Last Name.” She also won best new artist in 2007.

Her duet “I Told You So” with Randy Travis got a best country collaboration nod, vs. “Beautiful World” (Dierks Bentley, Patty Griffin), “Down The Road” (Kenny Chesney< Mac McAnally), “Start a Band” (Brad Paisley, Keith Urban) and …

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