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Archive for June, 2010

Bret Michaels campaigning to be judge on ‘Idol’; Constantine Maroulis a daddy?

bret-michaels-814We’ve known for weeks that Poison frontman Bret Michaels has shown interest in judging on “Idol.” In Parade magazine, he said he’s going to be meeting with “Idol” execs soon to talk about it. He really really wants it.

Sure, he has had his fair share of medical problems recently, including a brain hemorrhage he miraculously survived this spring. He still suffers short-term memory loss and fatigue but remains on the road touring.

But the man’s image has greatly improved given his spunky victory on NBC’s Donald Trump vehicle “Celebrity Apprentice” (as opposed to the boozy idiocy of VH1’s “Rock of Love”).

Though many of us here agree that a fourth judge is unnecessary, “Idol” may end up picking one anyway.

Good points about Bret: He is extremely likable, especially the Bret Michaels we saw on “Celebrity Apprentice.” He works hard. He’s smart. He is witty and quotable. He could be fun on the judge’s table.

Potential bad points about Bret: He is not the picture of health. He helms …

Continue reading Bret Michaels campaigning to be judge on ‘Idol’; Constantine Maroulis a daddy? »

Could Ryan Seacrest take over for Larry King?

seacrest0128Ryan Seacrest is Larry King’s first choice to take over for him when his CNN interview show ends after 25 years this fall.

Here are some questions:

1) Does Ryan want the job? Perhaps. It’s a high-profile gig and he’s done it before. It fits into Ryan’s job as a host/interviewer. He’d draw a younger audience, for sure. And he wouldn’t be so awkward talking to the likes of T.I. or Lady Gaga.

Ryan Seacrest on CNN

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2) Can he do it given his current contractual obligations? During “Idol” season especially, he will have to cut out at least two nights a week. He has E! News hosting obligations. He also does mornings on KIIS-FM but told Forbes that he is probably not going to sign another radio contract at the end of the year so that would free him up.

3) Would he work on CNN? That’s for CNN executives to judge. King was able to interview royalty, politicians and pop culture figures. Would Ryan be able to handle …

Continue reading Could Ryan Seacrest take over for Larry King? »

Simon Cowell #11; Ellen DeGeneres #23; Ryan Seacrest #44 on Forbes Most Powerful Celebrity list for 2010

ellen-and-simon-entertainment-weekly-coverSimon Cowell moved up from no. 25 to 11 on the Forbes Most Powerful Celebrity list, based on pay ($80 million), TV/radio coverage (20 out of the top 100), traditional press coverage (20), Internet chatter (46)  and social media strength (64). (The social media component was added this year as a factor.)

Ellen DeGeneres climbed from 40 to 23, aided of course by her arrival on “Idol” as a judge. She took home an estimated $55 million, ranked 31 for TV/radio coverage, 58 for traditional press, 50 for Web chatter and a whopping 5 for social media.

Ryan Seacrest, the king of consistency, held at No. 44. He earned an estimated $51 million, ranked 41 for TV/radio coverage, 83 for traditional press, 75 for Web chatter and 14 for social media. (He loves to use Twitter!)

Carrie Underwood, ranked No. 75 a year ago, is off the list. In fact, not a single “Idol” alum made the top 100.

Oprah topped the list (bumping Angelina Jolie down to #18), followed by Beyonce, James Cameron (Avatar), …

Continue reading Simon Cowell #11; Ellen DeGeneres #23; Ryan Seacrest #44 on Forbes Most Powerful Celebrity list for 2010 »

Jennifer Hudson’s VH1 ‘Behind the Music’


VH1 on Monday aired the Jennifer Hudson “Behind The Music,” in which she talked extensively about her family tragedy in 2008. Her ups and downs make for an ideal special.

She grew up in a close family in Chicago. Her grandmother encouraged her to sing and friend Walter Williams helped manage her in her teens. She spent a year on a Disney cruise. She then traveled to Atlanta in 2003 for season three auditions of “Idol.”

The network cleared extensive “Idol” footage of her time there, including a good portion of her first audition.

“She just had natural God given raw talent,” said Randy Jackson on the special. “She was just starting to get in the zone and figuring out who she is.”

I recall in 2004 watching her amazing performance of Barry Manilow’s “Weekend in New England.” It was my favorite from her that season. Yet she got eliminated the next day. “We were all shocked,” Randy said on the special. “Sometimes the public doesn’t get it right away.”

Interestingly, tornadoes …

Continue reading Jennifer Hudson’s VH1 ‘Behind the Music’ »

Ryan Seacrest’s tribute to Dick Clark on the Daytime Emmys

dick clark

Ryan Seacrest hosted the Daytime Emmy tribute to his idol Dick Clark. Among those who feted him were the Spinners, the Jersey Boys, Marie Osmond, Tony Orlando and Chubby Checker.

“If I lived to 300, I could never fill your shoes,” Seacrest told Clark.

“Did I write that for you?” Clark cracked. “I want to thank all the artists and kids who appeared on ‘Bandstand,’ which was on for almost 40 years.”

After the aforementioned artists sang the Manilow-penned version of the “Bandstand” theme, Clark is seen crying.

MJ posted the video (though the audio is off a smidge.) in two parts:

The tribute video featured Garth Brooks, Simon Cowell, Cher, Donny Osmond, Frankie Avalon and Barry Manilow:

Continue reading Ryan Seacrest’s tribute to Dick Clark on the Daytime Emmys »

Fantasia’s new video for ‘Bittersweet’

I really picked a good week to NOT be in Atlanta, eh? I missed Kris Allen (Alpharetta AT&T store), Jordin Sparks (Six Flags Over Atlanta) and Kellie Pickler (opening for Rascal Flatts Sunday night). I’m seriously bummed. But Kris is back next month and I’ll be here for Adam Lambert’s concert in September, for sure.

Fantasia’s single “Bittersweet” gets a video:

Regular reader Lara pointed out that season 3 contestant and TV host Matt Rogers is a Bosley Hair Replacement spokesman.

matt rogers

matt rogers after

Continue reading Fantasia’s new video for ‘Bittersweet’ »

Might Carrie Underwood get hitched in Georgia?

Carrie+Underwood+CMUA realtor source emailed me and said Carrie Underwood and her beau Mike Fisher will be getting married at the Ritz Carlton at Reynolds Plantation in Greensboro, Ga., halfway between Atlanta and Augusta on July 10. She has rented out the entire hotel for friends and family, the source wrote.

I just tried to reserve a room for that night there. No rooms were available so it could be true though it might just be a busy weekend.

I’m trying to get more details.

Continue reading Might Carrie Underwood get hitched in Georgia? »

Interview with Kris Allen, a huge Braves fan

Kris Allen at the AT&T store June 24 in Alpharetta with fans. CREDIT: Rick Limpert

Kris Allen at the AT&T store June 24 in Alpharetta with fans. CREDIT: Rick Limpert

I’ve always liked Kris Allen. Solid musician, nice guy, perfectly deserving of the “Idol” crown. Scintillating? No. Controversial? Not in the least. Witty? Not especially. Relatable? Absolutely. He has no aggrandized ego or sense of self – just an Arkansas boy made good. Even during a quick interview with me by phone a few moments ago, he never sounds bored. He truly makes an effort to be engaged and answer questions the best he can.

He called in from the Alpharetta AT&T store, where he is now signing autographs and kissing babies. (I”m 600 miles away in Alexandria, Va. and did a phoner.). I hope he gets a good crowd.

Anyway, here are excerpts from the interview:

Q: What did you do for your 25th birthday a few days ago?

A: We actually had a show in Albuquerque. It was real fun. We got a cake on stage, from Coldstone.

Q: They didn’t put 25 candles on the cake, did they?

A: It was like four, …

Continue reading Interview with Kris Allen, a huge Braves fan »

Kellie Pickler engaged! Kelly Clarkson tops ‘Idol’ earner among contestants; Jordin Sparks at Six Flags Over Georgia Friday

Sure, we know that Ryan Seacrest and Simon Cowell make a fortune. How are the “Idols” doing? Forbes tried to calculate it.


The top 3 are not surprising, but you have to be impressed with one Kellie Pickler, who made $4.3 million. Who would have guessed she could make that much four years after she left the show? Everyone thought she was the dopey, ditzy one. Not so much, eh? She works almost constantly and will be back this Sunday in Atlanta to open for Rascal Flatts. I am flying back that afternoon, may try to make it to the concert just to see her.

And better yet, Pickler has gotten engaged to songwriter Kyle Jacobs on a Florida beach at sunset. Awww…. She has also reconciled with her dad (but not her mom.)

“It turned out to be the most amazing day of my life,” the fifth-season American Idol star, 23, tells PEOPLE. “My whole world changed. We both feel like we got my grandmother’s blessing.”

Jacobs wrote the 2007 Garth Brooks hit “More Than a Memory.” Pickler met him about …

Continue reading Kellie Pickler engaged! Kelly Clarkson tops ‘Idol’ earner among contestants; Jordin Sparks at Six Flags Over Georgia Friday »

Kris Allen visiting Star 94 and AT&T store in Alpharetta Thursday


Kris Allen is making man in-store appearance at the AT&T store near North Point Mall in Alpharetta Thursday from4 to 5 p.m. The first 200 fans get to meet him.

I’m in D.C. so I’m missing out on the festivities (but he’ll be back in town to open for Maroon 5 next month.).

He’ll be doing a small in-person concert for Star 94 fans later that evening as well. (You need to win tickets to see that.)

The store is at 7900 North Point Parkway in Alpharetta.

MJ posted a flood of Carrie Underwood photos from the Nashville flood benefit last night.

David Archuleta will sing the National Anthem at the Washington D.C. Fourth of July concert airing on PBS. Nope, I’m here a little too early for that!

No ‘Idol” concerts in D.C. while I’m here though I could see Carole King/James Taylor, Pitbull, Sister Hazel, Ted Nugent, En Vogue, Phish, Bill Engvall or Natalie Cole. (Adam Lambert comes to Baltimore Sunday but I’ll be back in Atlanta.)

Continue reading Kris Allen visiting Star 94 and AT&T store in Alpharetta Thursday »