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My favorite personal ‘Idol’ moments of 2010

I’m on vacation this week so these are pre-written items so you guys can talk amongst yourselves.

I saw several “Idol” alums live this year, plus the usual “Idols Live” tour. And I interviewed several of them by phone and face to face. Here are my top 10 most notable “Idol” moments with links to the original blog entries:

Carrie-on-truck- Carrie Underwood live was probably the highlight of my year. She really blew me away in late October at the Gwinnett Arena, proving to all of us why she won season four and has been such a success since then. She even made a trip on a pickup truck elevated above the crowd work.

- Adam Lambert live. He also proved to me why he’s so popular, selling out mid-sized arenas world wide.  In September, at the decidedly un-rock-like venue of the Atlanta Symphony Hall, he gave the incredibly enthusiastic crowd a solid 70-minute theatrical performance, sounding smooth and commanding the stage with panache.

- I caused Anoop Desai a few problems in October. He was in town for a BMI music showcase and I interviewed him by phone. But there was a quote that was misconstrued by Lambert fans.  He was genuinely upset when he called me at 7 a.m. in the morning the next day. An excerpt from the blog:

I asked him what his brand is: “It’s smart. It’s intelligent. I’m a gentleman. My music is real. It talks about life and situations I can relate to. You’re never going to hear me singing a song like Kesha or Adam [Lambert.] That’s not my lane. My lane is smart and hip. It’s hooky, it’ s catchy. I want to appeal to simple universal characteristics we all want, which is love.”

UPDATE @ 7:21 AM Friday: Apparently, some Adam Lambert fans had gotten a hold of this and thought Anoop was implying that Adam’s music is not smart or hip or hooky or catchy. That was not what he meant at all. He called me this morning to make that clear. I knew he was simply saying that his style is different from Adam’s, that’s all. Nothing more than that.

- Clay Aiken face to face.  When Aiken was visiting Georgia Public Broadcasting for a fund drive, he spent a few minutes talking to me. I decided to solicit questions from his most dedicated fans. I got a sense he has a love-hate relationship with said rabid fans. And he skirted my attempt at a personal question. See for yourself:

- Fantasia live. Last month, I caught Fantasia at the Fox Theatre before a huge crowd of mostly African-American women. She actually put together a thematic, visually enticing show with multiple costume changes and plenty of Fantasia spunk. Naturally, you either embrace her or hate her but there’s no doubt, she is a personality.

- Diana DeGarmo in “9 to 5.” The former Snellville gal has had the most successful theater career of any “Idol” alum. And she proved why she’s so good at it in September, fully embodying Dolly Parton’s feisty Doralee Rhodes part.

- Katharine McPhee at Children’s Healthcare at Egleston. Last month, I met the season five runner up for the first time before her Lenox Square tree lighting performance, and she was nothing but sweet and polite. Better yet, she’ll be back to Atlanta next year for an ABC Family film. And she sang “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” to this little girl (though it was actually a request from her mom.)

- Ryan Seacrest one on one at the Ronald McDonald House near Emory. For the second year in a row, Ryan came by the Ronald McDonald House before hosting a gala for the non-profit organization. I got to meet his sister, see his parents and his girlfriend. He easily swatted away any questions about Julianne Hough when I talked to him.

- Danny Gokey live. Gokey, an early favorite to win season eight, came in third and decided (surprisingly) to go into country music. He’s had a couple of minor hits. I saw him at a Best Buy in March.

56 comments Add your comment

Mercedes S.

December 23rd, 2010
8:24 am

Rodney, it’s like you haven’t been gone at all this week! Good work, good subjects!
Morning, all! Christmas rush here, guests have arrived, with colds, my tree WILL be dressed in time for Christmas.

Deirdre

December 23rd, 2010
9:07 am

Thanks for this, Rodney. I remember each piece you wrote on these events and really appreciated the time you take to keep us informed.

I think some people will be surprised by some of your choices but I’m not. Each Idol mentioned has made a bit of a name for him/herself and some have become very famous…or infamous(and you know of whom I speak!)

Thanks Rodney. I believe this is the last piece until you return from vacation. You’ve done an excellent job keeping us busy during an already busy time. See you next week!

I-Ninjakicksbackxfactor

December 23rd, 2010
9:16 am

Where are the WGWG?

Highlander

December 23rd, 2010
9:22 am

“I’m on vacation this week so these are pre-written items so you guys can talk amongst yourselves.” – RoHo.

I guess that’s better than just talking TO ourselves! :D

Highlander

December 23rd, 2010
9:25 am

“I caught Fantasia at the Fox Theatre before a huge crowd…”

What bait did you use? Was it strictly catch and release? Did you have to throw her back or could you just have put her in a cooler somewhere?

JTesla

December 23rd, 2010
9:30 am

Great blogs the last few days Rodney. Merry Christmas everyone.

Wait, no mention of Mama’s Song as a favorite moment?

Deirdre

December 23rd, 2010
9:37 am

I WISH he’d just put her in a cooler somewhere, Highlander!

wreckedpizza

December 23rd, 2010
11:48 am

That’s the Christmas spirit, D. LOL! :-0

I remember the Anoop brouhaha. That was funny as hell, I thought. Glamberts can definitely get worked up, can’t they?

Thanks for the threads, Rodney.

And, JT, you just had to go there didn’t you…

kelly&carriefan

December 23rd, 2010
11:58 am

Hey y’all!

Sitting in my office…aka Ghost Town today. Loving the Idol posts and cannot wait for 2011. Until last week, Rodney and I had the same Favorite Personal Idol Moment, but then I had to go meet Kelly! That kinda trumps Carrie. By a country mile. ;)

So, here it goes, for the few regulars who probably know just how much getting to meet her meant to me. A Night for Hope was a fantastically intimate setting in a small Nashville church. The main focus of the night was to raise money and awareness for the Houses of Hope Orphanages in South Africa and Zimbabwe. They were started by Bill Rapier and a friend a couple of years ago.

The show began with 13 year old Kennedy Noel. She’s the daughter of Kelly’s musical director. She writes her own music and is pretty much on the tween market. At one point, she brought Kelly out to sing a song she’d written, You Had Me.

Since this is an Idol blog, I’ll skip ahead. After Kennedy, Nick Britt, JillandKate (Kelly’s backup singers), Ashley Arrison, and Shane McAnally each performed a few songs. All are so talented, and great performers.

Kelly came out and did a set of her songs (which she said she didn’t want to do, but had to or she’d “get yelled at for not singing.”) It was clear from the get go, that she has missed performing, interacting with the audience and touring. She said so a few times. She was super chatty and talking a mile a minute. Her set consisted of Walk Away, Behind These Hazel Eyes (which she forgot, and looked at me while I sang at the top of my lungs helping her out!), When It Don’t Come Easy (a Patty Griffin cover), I’ll Be Home For Christmas, My Life Would Suck Without You, and You Still Won’t Know What It’s Like. The last song being one she wrote after having spent time with House of Hope kids, who actually sing part of the song. She mentioned the possibility of releasing it as a way to raise funds.

Since the venue probably held about 200 of us, I thought there would be the possibility that she might stick around. And she did. I waited in line for a good 10 – 15 minutes. Watching her interact with people was pretty interesting. She was just what we’ve all seen and heard on interviews. She has an uncanny ability to make every person she talks to feel extremely special and important.

When it came time for me to talk to her, SHE approached me for a hug and a “It’s so nice to see you!” And here I might veer into tween-like excitement, but I’ve wanted to meet her for 8 years. Pardon the gushing. She mentioned that she saw me from the stage singing along, even when she was forgetting her lyrics. (I was lucky enough to be right in front, center behind some thankfully short girls).

We talked about her new music; the fact that it’s “on hold,” which led to my utter disappointment. She made me laugh when she said, “Trust me, I know! I’m so bored!” Someone asked her to tweet more. She said she couldn’t because it was “broken”, and I made her laugh asking her how in the world she broke her twitter. I mentioned Atlanta, to which she stared confused at me. I clarified that I was complaining about the fact that she hasn’t played Atlanta in forever. She took it to mean I wanted her to come down to hang out. I immediately said, “Yes. You should come hang out with me.” We posed for a picture and that’s about all I recall.

All in all, a great experience. I got to speak with all of the performers and had a lovely time. Kelly doesn’t disappoint, folks. If it’s all an act, she had me fooled.

PS. If you want to see what all my fuss was about, here is the link from MJs to all the awesome videos fans shot from the night: http://mjsbigblog.com/kelly-clarkson-you-still-wont-know-what-its-like-new-song.htm

kelly&carriefan

December 23rd, 2010
12:02 pm

I completely missed the most important part! Anyone in the giving spirit can help by going to their site: http://housesofhope.showitsite.com/#/donate/

JTesla

December 23rd, 2010
12:29 pm

Awesome K&Cfan… just awesome! And for a great cause too.

Deirdre

December 23rd, 2010
12:38 pm

Fantastic k&cf!!!!!! Truly a wonderful experience. I’m so happy for you!

Heather MacDonald

December 23rd, 2010
12:46 pm

I’m so happy for you, K&CF!! Sounds like you had a great time, and I am green with jealousy! :-)

wreckedpizza

December 23rd, 2010
1:26 pm

Um, you mention a picture, kelly&carriefan? May we see it or it is for private viewing only?

Like JT says: “Picture(s) or it didn’t happen! :-)

wreckedpizza

December 23rd, 2010
1:28 pm

And I’m sure all will hold out hope for a cure for Kelly’s broken twitter!!!! I don’t tweet but a broken twitter sounds painful…

Shane

December 23rd, 2010
3:11 pm

Adam Lambert’s average 1500 seat venues are NOT mid-sized arenas. He was playing clubs and theaters with a slaughterhouse and a few warehouses thrown in.

KPH

December 23rd, 2010
3:57 pm

Just wanted to pop in and Say Merry Christmas to everyone.

Deirdre

December 23rd, 2010
5:19 pm

Just wanted to wish you all a very Merry Christmas! See you next week!

Rodney Ho

December 23rd, 2010
7:00 pm

I was on Steve Reynolds Blvd. this afternoon with my parents. Not to insult them, but I dozed off for a moment at the wheel and bumped the pickup truck in front of me! No damage to his vehicle but of course a little dent in mine.Fortunately, my dad is an expert on cars and we went over to Autozone and got some putty and paint and he’s fixing it. My dad is Mr. Fix It.

Then we drove over to Kroger and my car wouldn’t start. Had to get it jump started. I have to get a new battery tomorrow. It’s been that kind of day!

Harm

December 23rd, 2010
8:15 pm

Sorry Rodney! I hope you have a much better day tomorrow!

JTesla

December 23rd, 2010
8:51 pm

Ouch sorry Rodney!

Robert

December 23rd, 2010
10:30 pm

If you haven’t seen the live CMA 2010 duet between Kelly Clarkson and Jason Aldean, I would highly recommend it. It is pure musical magic.

ashley

December 24th, 2010
4:29 am

Shane stop hating.
he played only 3 very small venues in the US due 2 booking that was organized by his management in the UK out of his 100 plus concert tour
that you know those three shows, show that you are trolling and probably a fan of another.
and so you probs know about the …
baseball field in florida 30,000 people
Balloon festival where he was the only performer 50,000 people
Hard rock cafe 5000 peeps
Pullyup 8500 peeps
2 shows in Orange county 16,000
just 2 name a few..

[...] Atlanta Journal Constitution – My favorite personal ‘Idol’ moments of 2010 “Adam Lambert live. He also proved to me why he’s so popular, selling out mid-sized arenas world wide.” [...]

Mercedes S.

December 24th, 2010
9:23 am

Good Morning and merry Christmas!

The Tree is trimmed, snow expected tomorrow and three superb movies are ppening at the ‘plexes today!

“The King’s speech” is every bit as good as you’ve already heard and read. Colin Firth will get his first Oscar for playing George VI as the overlooked, maligned brother of glamor king Edward, who gave up his throne for “the woman he loved” – a bad choice for Eddie, good for England, who in the stuttering “Bertie” found a compassionate war time king.

I-Ninjakicksbackxfactor

December 24th, 2010
9:24 am

Don’t listen to Dewyze while driving Rodney. Dozing off is a frequent side effect.

Mercedes S.

December 24th, 2010
9:35 am

that’s “opening”…

“True Grit” is not just as good as the John Wayne version of 40 years ago, it’s better! The Coen brothers follow the Charles Portis novel much closer; the tough little girl who takes on her dad’s killer AND the boozehound marshal she hires to track down the bad guy is way sharper and more entertaining than softie Kim Darby ever was. Hallee Steinfeld, only 13 when she shot “True Grit”, is an acting marvel. Adults Jeff Bridges as Rooster Cogburn, Matt Damon as the Texas Ranger, Josh Brolin and Barry Pepper as the baddies, excellent all, can only follow young Halle’s lead.

Mercedes S.

December 24th, 2010
9:44 am

Sold as a super sad story about the death of a child, “Rabbit Hole” is really about the survival of a marriage struck by unthinkable tragedy. Nicole Kidman proves her Oscar-worthiness here as the mother of a young boy,killed when he chased his dog into the street, and Aaron Eckhart is terrific too as the bereaved father. The parents clash over their different approaches to mourning. Diane Wiest, Miles Teller and Sandra Oh crucially good in supporting parts. Don’t let subject deter you! This is a master class in acting.

Mercedes S.

December 24th, 2010
9:47 am

Notice the big,blank space in the ads for “Little Fockers”? It’s meant for positive critics’ quotes about the movie, but there’s nothing good to say about this pile of you-know-what.

Mercedes S.

December 24th, 2010
9:51 am

“Gulliver’s Travels”, masquearding as a children’s movie, is another sad attempt to suck that extra 3-D cash from gullible parents eager to treat the young un’s to a “fun family movie” at Christmas. Take them to “Tangled” again instead.

lina

December 24th, 2010
10:22 am

Shane, how does it sound to you a 75,000 crowd in Montreal seeing Adam? :)

Not a fan of AI or any other idol except AL, but this is a nice article.

JTesla

December 24th, 2010
10:47 am

My Christmas gift to Adam fans… silence. Merry Christmas everyone. “True Grit” hmmm well maybe I could watch it.

wreckedpizza

December 24th, 2010
11:05 am

Don’t know about “True Grit”, but “The King’s Speech” sounds interesting. Colin Firth is a good actor. May check that one out sometime.

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and Seasons Greetings to all. We could have a white Christmas in Georgia—-what a thought!

Deirdre

December 24th, 2010
11:17 am

Hubby can’t wait to see True Grit. He’ll be back home Sunday night. thanks for the reviews, Mercedes.

JT…I’m so proud of you.

Mercedes S.

December 24th, 2010
12:58 pm

Commiserations, Rodney on accident. Had long, sad e-mail from youngest son in Durango, Col., who hit some black ice. then a guard rail and now is minus a car in very cold weather.

linny ,,,=^..^=,,,

December 24th, 2010
2:23 pm

Merry Christmas, all who celebrate the Birth. Happy Holydays to those who celebrate either the Birth or other religious moments in history. And bah humbug to those who want to make it all a political correctness thing.

Peace.

Rodney, glad it was just a fender-dinger and nothing serious. Hope the remainder of your holiday vacation is nothing but good.

and to all….

whatever :-/

Marilyn

December 24th, 2010
2:44 pm

Clay Aiken sounded really snooty. I don’t like him anymore, he used to be so nice. Or at least pretended to be. : (

Markie

December 24th, 2010
2:49 pm

Adam played in many large stadiums including a 70,000 sold out show in Montreal, Canada. Also shows in Malaysia, Singapore, Japan, Australia, etc. All over. I’m looking forward to a lot more Adam shows next year.

woodpappy

December 24th, 2010
7:32 pm

Merry Christmas everybody !!!!!!! Thanks for the reviews Mercedes.

Harm

December 24th, 2010
8:01 pm

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY HOLYDAYS TO YOU ALL!

wreckedpizza

December 25th, 2010
5:34 am

Dear Santa Ho,

It is 5:30 a.m. I am awake and still there is no sign of Diana D. under my tree. Should I be concerned that you have skipped me? Please answer asap.

Your friend,

wreckedpizza

p.s. Hope you remembered to deliver Kelly Clarkson to kelly&carriefan!

Maryann

December 25th, 2010
7:37 am

Happy holidays and a big, fat, wet smooch to you, Rodney, for lovin’ on my boy, Adam Lambert. =D

Mercedes S.

December 25th, 2010
12:49 pm

It’s snowing in Atlanta… Merry Christmas, everyone!

Heather MacDonald

December 25th, 2010
5:07 pm

It is snowing lovely, white flakes in Marietta. Merry white Christmas, everyone!

Harm

December 25th, 2010
8:17 pm

Guess what I got for Christmas? Clue: I won’t get to see it until July 4th or there abouts! ASA IS GETTING A BABY BROTHER OR SISTER!!!

[...] Radio Fresh Top 100 for 2010 – Adam Lambert’s WWFM is #22 [...]

Deirdre

December 27th, 2010
7:21 am

Morning!

Congrats Harm on the new grandbaby!

I hope everyone’s holiday was as nice as mine!

Rickster

December 27th, 2010
8:48 am

Morning, all.

Saw the latest Narnia movie over the holiday. A bit dark (surprisingly.) Looking forward to seeing Carrie’s Golden Globes (I mean.. seeing Carrie at the Golden Globes) as she accepts the award for the best movie theme performance.

First time I’ve ever sat through the credits just to hear the song at the end. ;-) (As opposed to 2012, where I ran over two little kids and overturned a grandma in a wheel chair so I didn’t have to listen to the song by “The guy who came in second to Kris Allen. (You know, Kris, the guy who actually won?”)

Deirdre

December 27th, 2010
9:24 am

Two days after Christmas and Rickster is already trying to start trouble! ;-)

Rickster

December 27th, 2010
9:28 am

Awww. your queeness. If I was really trying to start trouble, I would have made a comment like “with a mouth that big, you could use just about any bait to catch Fantasia. Considering the married guy she was sleeping with, obviously she’s not that picky.”

But not me. Nope! Not me!

I’d never say anything like that! :-D

Rickster

December 27th, 2010
9:36 am

And did anyone (like JT) notice Rodney’s Radio/TV blog? He actually uses the phrase “Zombie Apocalypse.”

Rickster

December 27th, 2010
9:41 am

And… did I miss it… or did anyone explain what WGWG is?

Mercedes S.

December 27th, 2010
9:55 am

Rickster, at 8:48… if you just could get over your prejudice…that was a GREAT song at the end of “2012″.

Morning, everybody!

Car still covered with snow. For the first time ever, didn’t go to the mall for after Christmas sales.
Got a Kindle from hubby. He loves his. I have mixed feelinngs.

Rickster

December 27th, 2010
10:47 am

Merry Christmas & happy frickin’ new year to you too, Mercedes.

indigo

December 28th, 2010
10:46 pm

Wow Clay aiken sounding so anoying and snooty. He is so repulsive and full of himself. I don’t know how he was so popular by so many in the past,my sister had the biggest crush on him while he was on Idol but lost interest in him after year or so then he bashed Adam Lambert and my sister lost all the respect for him. I am a fan of Adam Lambert, Archie and Jeson Castro.

ari

December 29th, 2010
10:23 am

hmmm.. I really don’t see where clay was being annoying or snooty or whatever. He’s giggling.. answering questions (the same that the same people keep asking over and over and over!!).. he’s being his old goofy self. He’s always been snarky! soo.. whatever.