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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Season four ‘Idol’ runner-up Bo Bice, now in Cumming, grapples with alcoholism. And who will be on the finale tonight?

Bo Bice had his fourth childk, his first daughter, Merrin Elizabeth Joy Bice,  in April.

Bo Bice had his fourth child, his first daughter, Merrin Elizabeth Joy Bice, in April.

Bo Bice, season four “Idol” runner up, last fall realized his life wasn’t in order. Blame it on the alcohol.

On September 25, he had his last drink and entered rehab. He said in an interview last week that he has remained sober ever since.

Under the influence (Heineken was the standard though he did love whiskey),  “I tend to sometimes act like an idiot,” he said.  At age 36 at the time, he said it was time for him to grow up.

“Being a dad and a husband and trying to keep alive in the music business is enough of a challenge,” he said. “I didn’t need to be drunk.”

“I don’t think I was doing the best I could do with my career or my music,” he added. “Those things start to suffer. Or family starts to suffer. I wasn’t living up to my full potential.”

Bice said there was no official intervention. “You have to come to the realization yourself,” he said. “There were no thunder bolts from the sky.”

Soon after, he, his pregnant wife Caroline and their three sons moved to Cumming from Nashville to be closer to family. Bice spent part of his childhood in metro Atlanta so this was a bit of a homecoming. In fact, his parents and brother live near his new home, reminiscent of “Everybody Loves Raymond.” “We have a family compound out here,” he said.

He said he is now able to focus more on his immediate family. “I’m looking at my phone and email less than I used to,” he said. “I’m slowly edging toward achieving a purpose.”

But leaving Nashville doesn’t mean he’s divesting himself from his career as a rock musician.

“I’ve got so many friends and contacts there,” he said. “We still have a house there we’ve leased out for a couple of years. I run my business out of there. I feel I’m more productive when I’m in Nashville. I’m there to work, to write songs.”

Besides music, he paints and takes photography (check out his work on bobice.com). He has been doing speaking engagements to talk about entertainment, the music business and his life experiences. Though he doesn’t get a lot of national exposure anymore, he is still making a living and is doing fine financially, he said.

“I have life lessons I can pass along,” he said. “I”ve had to learn to be more flexible.” I pressed for an example. He said early on, he refused gigs if they required him to lip synch, such as a major parade. (He wouldn’t say which one but it was probably the Thanksgiving Day Macy’s Parade in New York City.)

His latest musical focus in Southern gospel and contemporary Christian, an arena several “Idol’ contestants have excelled in, especially Chris Sligh and Mandisa.

He will tour this summer, including a run in Branson, Mo. with other “Idol” contestants. “Just staying busy, blessed to have traction seven years removed from ‘Idol,’ ” he said. “I’m surprised people still give a damn. I’m grateful they do.”

“What’s made me happiest,” he continued, “is my beautiful wife Caroline and the family she helped provide. She provides for me every day. And now with my family here, I’m in the best place in my life.”

In April, his first daughter Merrin was born. “A treasure,” he said.

I called him after reports of Phillip Phillips’ medical travails on the show with kidney stones. Bice had serious digestion issues while he competed on the program. The difference: at the time, Bice said he had no clue what the problem was. It wasn’t until after the program was over that he learned what his issues were. He had three surgeries to deal with his digestive issues after doctors said he had an intestinal condition called Intussusception.

“I wasn’t exactly the healthiest living person there,” he said. “I liked to drink and party and have fun. Stress didn’t help.”

Fortunately, he said the surgeries solved the problems and he’s been okay on that front for years.

Bice still follows “Idol.” Of the final three, he said he liked Joshua Ledet the best. “Very different, very soulful,” he said. He said he can’t call who’s going to win tonight. “A close call,” he said. “It reminds me of the year with Kris Allen and Adam Lambert. Very different singers.”

- Tonight’s finale will feature tributes to Robin Gibb and Donna Summer, according to Hollywood Reporter. SPOILER ALERT: If you want to be surprised, skip the next graf. Nelly Furtado, Shelia E, Jennifer Holliday, Atlanta native Gladys Knight and Gloria Gaynor will honor Summer with Chaka Khan joining in later. Kristin Chenoweth will pair off with Jessica Sanchez to sing “Enough is Enough.” John Fogerty, Reba McEntire, Neil Diamond, Jordin Sparks and Fantasia will perform, too. “Idol” has already announced Rihanna and Aerosmith as performers.

-As we regulars know, many “Idol” contestants end up having to make a living outside of music because there are only so many jobs out there for musicians. The Daily Beast managed to get a hold of 70 former “Idol” contestants to see what they’re up to.

Among the findings:

Sanjaya Malakar tends bar in the East Village. Camile Velasco worked at a Subway in Los Angeles. A.J. Gil became homeless. Vonzell Solomon sings in a casino in China. Corey Clark is going to college. Didi Benami is a waitress. David Hernandez is jobless. Jim Verraros is a fashion show planner. Carmen Rasmussen does what I do: entertainment blogging! Alexis Grace is a morning host on a top 40 station in Memphis. Chris Sligh is a pastor. Julia DeMato was a hairdresser before “Idol’ and remains so now. Christina Christian is an IT company account manager.

Check out the photo of Sanjaya here, with his hair mostly cut off. Let’s just say he isn’t just in a career recession.

- MJ had some amusing superstitions that could help predict who will win. For instance, the person whose name starts later in the alphabet has won ever year.  And the strangest one is the Kristy Lee Cook shadow. She finished 7th in season 7. That year, David COOK won. Next year, KRIS Allen won. Then LEE DeWyze. And in season 10, ScotTY McCreery helped finish her name in full. And just to annoy us, note that Phillip Phillips is from Leesburg in Lee County.  Most of the superstitions she listed benefit Phillip.

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By Rodney Ho, Radio & TV Talk

75 comments Add your comment

JTesla

May 23rd, 2012
12:42 pm

Good to hear from Bo, and thanks for the link to “Where are they now”. Always good stuff.

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
12:58 pm

Dang, I always manage to post right as we change over to a new blog. :-)
Pitchy, G, and D…. I wrote to y’all at the very end of the last one.

Dick Lark – I didn’t say they should all be disqualified. I was just seconding bknsty that it would be really interesting to see a top 12 that didn’t include the requisite WGWG. It’s a more interesting race when you don’t already know the outcome.

Vast Wastrel – I too would like to know the outcome if this could happen (paraphrasing):
…the voting system must be changed….(I) would prefer the winner be selected by whoever is the most popular with the majority of viewers, not a few thousand rabid fans.

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
1:05 pm

And G at 12:03 – thank you! :-)

In the same post, you asked why you can listen to DM, Pearl Jam, Nickelback… but not Phil?
Well, I’m the same way (except I don’t love DM). For me, it’s because Phil drops the melody from his songs. And because when you lose all the machinations, his pure singing voice isn’t much to listen to. (For me, anyway.)

He just doesn’t give me chills like when someone with a big voice belts it out…. I sit through his songs, rather than feeling them.

Sierra

May 23rd, 2012
1:35 pm

Actually, Kirsten wrote that “Superstitions” bit over at MJ’s blog.

Deirdre

May 23rd, 2012
2:16 pm

Personal tastes aside, I think both Jessica and Phil have a chance at a music career. Notice I’m not saying either one of them will be huge stars. Phil is creative musically and a good looking guy. Jessica has a powerhouse voice and an ability to sing just about anything they put in front of her.

♥ kelly&carriefan ♥

May 23rd, 2012
2:20 pm

I’m reading the “Where are they now?” gallery on the Daily Beast. Chris Sligh nailed it:

And what I realized is that with American Idol fans, you’re their favorite that year. Over the last five years, 10 or 15 people have stuck with me and buy every album. But the millions of people that voted for me—where are they now? They don’t really care about Chris Sligh; they care about American Idol. And that used to bother me. It doesn’t really bother me anymore. I’ve come to terms with it.”

JTesla

May 23rd, 2012
2:22 pm

Chris Sligh, a man of wisdom.

Nana

May 23rd, 2012
2:22 pm

Hey Everyone……

Just popping in for a few minutes.

I haven’t read any of the comments from last nights show (will later), but wanted to say whom I thought was better of the two finalists. I would have to say that JS won just a smidgen over PP, although I did like his final song better. As to which one will win is anyone’s guess, but I will say that PP will take home the title.

I finally watched last week’s performances and results yesterday (thank goodness for DVR’s) and wasn’t to impressed with any of the 9 performances. I don’t feel that any of Joshua’s performances deserved yet another standing “O”.

As I won’t be home tonight to watch the results, I will have to record and watch later. I will NOT be around any TV, blogs, or anything that will spoil it for me until I’ve had a chance to watch. May the best performer win.

Sam-A

May 23rd, 2012
2:28 pm

Nana: Since you won’t be around, I was just wondering if perhaps you’re planning on dropping by m house tonight and making me the famous “fried threesome” with some creamed corn, cornbread, turnip greens, etc? Oh, and coconut cake, “Nana pudding”, etc.

Sam-A

May 23rd, 2012
2:30 pm

Poor Bo. Wish he’d had a better career – he was deserving of it. Hard to believe with all his health problems, he was led to drinking – you’d think he’d have stayed far away from that mess.

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
2:31 pm

KCF and D, I agree with both of your above comments. There’s always talk that the finalists will become huge stars, but I think Chris Sligh nailed it…. they care about Idol. Once they’ve voted their fave to victory, they’re moving on.

I am really not sure how these two will fare. With Jessica’s Whitney/Mariah-like voice, I sure hope she makes it… we need more music like that. But sometimes even the best voices disappear after the show.

With Phil, it’s just as tough a call. I’d guess he might have a little success for a while, because he’s cute…. but everyone who power-votes for him now may eventually go the way of all the troops who power-voted Lee to victory over Crystal’s talent.

Deirdre

May 23rd, 2012
2:32 pm

k&cf….agree with Chris Sligh. Even if your favorite doesn’t win ANY year, most fans still return to the show. Why? Because it isn’t about who wins! Never has been. It’s about the show itself and watching 12 kids work hard to improve and attract fan loyalty…if only for a few months.

Deirdre

May 23rd, 2012
2:35 pm

According to rumors EVERYWHERE, Jessica will win tonight due to Phillipine power voting. :-)

Good, another conspiracy theory to play with. Phil will have been robbed…much like Clay…and anyone else who didn’t win this show …..EVER.

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
2:36 pm

That should’ve read “the fans” care about Idol. :-)

A thought on the coin toss… was anyone else surprised that Phil, being the good southern boy that he is, didn’t offer the choice to Jessica first?

And was this the first time that the guy hasn’t said Ladies First? (Not trying to slam Phil, but just curious, and a little surprised.)

JTesla

May 23rd, 2012
2:38 pm

It’s an interesting conspiracy, but what happens when Phillip is declared the winner? Of course the main argument then will be that Idol is rigged because they ignored the billions of votes that came in from the Phillipines.

bknsty14

May 23rd, 2012
2:40 pm

Posted this and then noticed everyone moved, just in case anyone else moves over and sees it twice:

I miss Hollie. Had a genuine rooting interest when she was in it. I was really left feeling nothing last night. Played Assassins Creed on the big TV and had AI on the small TV and never felt compelled by a song to switch it over. Jessica is a really good singer, but left me with no lasting impression last night. Phillip was just the same old Phillip, except his first two songs were just average at best. Moving Out is such a great song and I don’t like what he did with it either time. I’ll be watching tonight to see the singers from the past come back (except Colton and DeAndre). Hated Colton’s whiny voice since last year and DeAndre is the worst singer since Sanjaya. (I would make a throwing up emoticon if I knew how) Joshua would have made it a little more exciting. Though I couldn’t stand the screaming he insisted on inserting into every song, he was exciting to watch. He probably should have won, especially out of the remaining three. Jessica is just to vanilla for my taste and does seem robotic and a bit entitled from time to time. P Squared is just the same almost every time (Beggin’ and Volcano were great). Of the remaining two I think Phillip should win. I really wanted to see a girl win this year. Of the top 12 the girls were SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much better and we will still end up with a guy winner. And one of the weakest vocalists at that. Oh well, maybe next year.

JTesla

May 23rd, 2012
2:40 pm

Jenny: Blake Lewis did just that to Jordin (and he is from the Seattle area of all places).

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
2:40 pm

I wish D was correct, but I fear she’s not. I don’t think even Jessica can overcome the magnetic power of the WGWG.

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
2:42 pm

JT, Blake gave Jordin first choice, right? I remember being mad because I didn’t want Jordin to win, and thinking “arrrgh, Blake, how could you?” Even though it was polite of him. :-) And Jordin grinning like a cheshire cat and holding up two fingers. I was so annoyed!!!

Mercedes S.

May 23rd, 2012
2:44 pm

Thanks, D., for posting link to NYT article – worthwhile Idol-reading, I thought.

As for poster on previous thread’s “She (Jessica)’s done nothing but dedicate her life to singing and it shows.” Yep – all songbot.

Enjoyed the link to “Where are they now”. Missed Allison Iraheta, Adam, and bunch of others, though. Most surprising – Corey Clark in college! Saddest: Mikalah Gordon’s missing three relatives’ funerals.

Is there a list anywhere over how long “saved” singers stayed before they finally were voted off?

Barney

May 23rd, 2012
2:44 pm

I don’t see the “poor Bo.” He does have the talent to have a much bigger career, but those near death experiences taught him it isn’t worth giving up a normal life and family to be a star. He sounds happy.

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
2:48 pm

bknsty14, I was wondering why you weren’t around as much…. but I know just how you feel. I felt the EXACT same last year with the country final. It was so sad, to me, not to enjoy the last competition of my favorite show. :-(

I agree with most of your post (other than I like Jess, don’t mind Colton, and DON’T think Phil deserves to win.) But I especially agree on Movin’ Out, DeAndra HairSick, and most of all this:

“Of the top 12 the girls were SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much better and we will still end up with a guy winner. And one of the weakest vocalists at that. Oh well, maybe next year.”

G

May 23rd, 2012
2:50 pm

Honestly, it will be a challenge for Jess, Josh, and Phil post Idol. If you think about their competition in the “real world” post Idol:

PP vs Dave Mathews. Need I say more?

Joshua vs. Anthony Hamilton, Eric Benet, Tyrese. He’s a different category than Neo, Usher, or Chris Brown, being that he doesn’t dance and he’s more soul than pop.

Jess vs. Beyonce, Rihana, JHud. Jess is really going to need hot producers to help distinguish her from the pack. Like Josh, she won’t be able to compete with Beyonce in terms of dancing or videos, which is two thirds of the entertainment factor. Not to mention that Melanie Amaro is competing in the same category, and will get the drop on her first for releasing an album. Idol is easy compared to what’s facing her.

RxDawg

May 23rd, 2012
2:50 pm

“A.J. Gil became homeless”

Well that was just kinda thrown in there O.O

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
2:52 pm

And just to clarify my 2:42 post: It wasn’t so much that I liked Blake, but I HATED the judges’ pimping of their precious little golden Jordin. Most especially the Idol Gives Back bull-poop.

Although Blake was the originator of the “change it up” trend with You Give Love A Bad Name. And he did win me early with Keane’s Somewhere Only We Know.

But my votes for Blake were more “mad that Melinda was a pimping victim” votes than anything.

bknsty14

May 23rd, 2012
2:53 pm

I was around and reading last night, just didn’t see too much that excited me. And the show was really rushed. Of all the shows in the last 4 weeks, this one could have been two hours. At least an hour and a half. With a good guest singer. It’s the next to last show of the year. Tonight should be a little more exciting I hope.

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
2:56 pm

Bk, it was REALLY rushed! We were saying last night that the time spent on James DeRulio would’ve been much better spent on Jessica and Phil. Really, why was it necessary for him to sing on an already short performance show, instead of on the two-hour finale?

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
2:58 pm

(And who was he, anyway? I know Ryan’s yapped about him at other times during the season… but I often tune Ryan out, and we skipped James’ earlier appearances too.)

G

May 23rd, 2012
3:00 pm

Regardless of who wins tonight, in Jessica’s mind she’s won already. No one can take that away from her.

bknsty14

May 23rd, 2012
3:01 pm

And just an observation in the AI vs The Voice debate. On my info screen on my cable it shows the season and episode number. The Voice ended it’s season on episode 21 (about). Idol will end the season on episode 40. And the singers on Idol sing every week so you get attached to them. The Voice is every other week and you see them five times? I didn’t care about any of those people, They need to work on getting viewers emotionally invested in their singers. I heard Jermaine Paul sing five times and hated him on three of them. Idol viewer (all of us) get to see people over and over and make a connection with them, and get mad when they are voted off or someone says something bad about them. The show is also usually two of the top five rated shows of the week, so it isn’t going anywhere. They pay Seacrest $15 Million a year now. They are making tons of money off this show so it’s going to be around for a while.

Just needed to rant.

Rodney Ho

May 23rd, 2012
3:07 pm

Nigel Tweeted that there were 132 million votes last night, a record. This despite the fact “Idol” ratings were the worst for a performance final ever (which he chose NOT to Tweet).

G

May 23rd, 2012
3:10 pm

The Voice will be around for some time to come. I think they get better as they provide more tweaks to the show. I believe they start the next season in September. One thing for sure is that the voting base [mainstream] for Voice is certainly different than Idol. Glaring difference…………no WGWG in The Voice’s winner circle. Same can be said for XFactor. I would say those shows are starting out fine.

Mercedes S.

May 23rd, 2012
3:11 pm

bk at 3:01 – well put.

From Billboard – Adam Lambert’s “Trespassing” makes #1 debut, making him first openly gay male artist to top charts.
“Elton John and George Michaels had #1 hits too, but only before they came out.”

Meant to comment on Bo Bice; thanks for story, Rodney, hope he finds his way back to music. .

G

May 23rd, 2012
3:16 pm

When Idol mentions a record number of votes being broken, I don’t really know what that “really” proves in comparison to number of voters. If each person gets multiple votes via text, online, etc. then those numbers don’t look as impressive. Shock value if you don’t put much thought to it. jmo

bknsty14

May 23rd, 2012
3:19 pm

If you put your mind to it and text in your votes for two straight hours, you can get in 1500-2000 votes by yourself.

Rickster (channeling his inner Simon)

May 23rd, 2012
3:25 pm

Philip magnanimously decided to go with “Ladies first” – and let Jessica go first. ;-)

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
3:27 pm

G – exactly. It doesn’t prove a thing. I guess they think the viewers are dense enough to be impressed when Ryan blabbers on about the millions and millions of votes.

Surprise, Idol… we know better. We’re not impressed. All it means is that fangroups are getting even better at power voting.

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
3:27 pm

Haha, Rickster! How generous of him!

Rickster (channeling his inner Simon)

May 23rd, 2012
3:28 pm

I thought Ryan said “Jason” Derulio.

But that might be my ears playing tricks on me again. After all… they failed to recognize the “one of the best singers” in the last 50 years.

Rickster (channeling his inner Simon)

May 23rd, 2012
3:30 pm

or Derulo…. however you spell it.

I actually kinda like the song… but changed the channel after the first crotch grab.

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
3:30 pm

Oh, maybe it was “Jason”. Since it wasn’t a finalist, I wasn’t really paying attention.

And I thought it was THE best singer in the past FIFTY!!!!!! Years!

???

Deirdre

May 23rd, 2012
3:31 pm

Rodney: Nigel Tweeted that there were 132 million votes last night, a record.

Well, gee, Rodney, with all those Phillipinos voting, is it any wonder? ;-)

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
3:31 pm

Ewww… glad I fast forwarded and missed the crotch grab. Nice!

Deirdre

May 23rd, 2012
3:32 pm

I think there’s only been one guy who won the coin toss and then let the lady choose…..but I can’t remember which one. ;-)

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
3:34 pm

Deirdre… it’s actually:

Over. One! Hundred!! THIRTY!!! TWO!!!!!! MILLION!!!!!!!!!! votes came in! A NEW RECORD!!!!!!!!!!!

Really now, you’re our Queen, say it right. :-) :-) :-)

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
3:44 pm

OK, I’m a geek with a quiet afternoon going on, so I looked it up:

Scotty – won toss; offered choice to Lauren
Blake – won toss; offered choice to Jordin
Taylor – won toss, took the second slot.

In all other years either the girl won the toss, or it wasn’t a boy-girl final.

SO not surprised that Taylor wasn’t a gentleman about it. As I recall, he appeared to have gotten pretty full of himself by the finale. I am a bit surprised at Phil… but we’ll chalk it up to maybe being nervous or not feeling well, and not thinking.

Rickster

May 23rd, 2012
3:46 pm

I can understand why a person who lives in the Phillipines (like our beloved Sakura) is called a “Filipino.”

I just can’t understand why it isn’t spelled Phillipino.

Seth T

May 23rd, 2012
3:46 pm

The winner will get around a $300,000 check when an album is released, and E-19 will spend a lot of money to promote it, and promote the artist over the next 18 months.

Kris Allen, for instance, made $650,000 over the course of about a year post-Idol, and then did some touring with Keith Urban and still is getting some good bookings to appear at certain events. I think Kris & Pia Toscano did the National Memorial Day program last year, just as an example.

It’s also estimated that the top 10 idols will get a pretty good paycheck from the resulting AI tour this summer.

Jessica will be automatically signed by Interscope, whether winner or 2nd place, as will Phillip. When a label is bearing most of the risk and expenses of bookings, album production, travel, etc. —
it’s a good forecast for at least a year —

Then if the artist is not making the label a profit, they are dropped and on their own. That doesn’t mean they will be at a fail-point, but now they are bearing the cost of studio production & distribution costs of music, travel, lodging, booking gaurantee’s for attendance or no-shows, paying a band or local pick-up musicians to play a venue, etc. It can eat-up a lot of money, so you have to go big or go home and work on local projects.

Competition is pretty strong, but Interscope is also pretty successful in the business. I think Phil & Jessica are both in a much better position than Jermaine Paul, winner of The Voice, in terms of income and potential success over the next few years.

Rickster

May 23rd, 2012
3:47 pm

Unless… of course… her queeness was calling all the Phillip Phillips voters/fans “Phillipinos.” :-)

Jenny

May 23rd, 2012
4:15 pm

What were the names of the two crap coronation songs? Since it’s slow it’s a good time for a game.

Work them into the following song title:

I believe in my destiny at a moment like this with no boundaries because this is my now inside the time of our life (but no, I don’t make you proud and neither did Taylor.)