Articles for American Idol Season 9

The fabric of American Idol unraveled yesterday with news that thiswill be Simon Cowell‘s final year judging.  However, FOX was quick topoint out that Idol will continue, leaving one giant question: who willreplace Simon?Duplicating the Brit‘s cruel cockiness and sexual tension with hostRyan Seacrest will be impossible, but we have a few ideas on howAmerican Idol might keep the show fresh with a brand new judge sittingin that seat when season 10 kicks off in 2011.  Here are our 10 bestideas:  Read more »
We‘re all eager to see how new American Idol judge Ellen DeGeneres meshes with the established trio of judges. And while we still have a few weeks until we actually witness Ellen in the act of judging during Hollywood Week, we do have the first images of the comedienne at the judge‘s table. By the looks of the smiling faces, either Ellen is fitting in just fine or someone on stage is impressing the entire panel. Truthfully, we‘d be equally happy for either reason.  Read more »
American Idol fans everywhere are abuzz about Simon Cowell‘s announcement yesterday that he will be leaving the show at the end of season 9 for an American version of The X Factor. But it‘s not just Idol fans who are talking about Simon‘s Idol exit, Simon‘s colleagues Ellen DeGeneres and Ryan Seacrest, as well as the original Idol Kelly Clarkson, have taken to Twitter to share their thoughts. Here‘s what Ellen, Ryan and Kelly had to say: Read more »
After months of waiting and several major changes to the show and judges panel, it‘s time for season 9 of American Idol to get started in earnest tonight. We begin the search for America‘s next Idol tonight in Boston with the help of guest judge, Posh Spice...errr, Victoria Beckham. The question on everyone‘s lips: will Boston help season 9 off to a wicked awesome or wicked awful start? Watch along with me tonight as we get our first glimpse at the Idol hopefuls, judges‘ panel without Paula, and Simon‘s last round of American Idol auditions. Be sure to follow along with me here and in 140 character quips on Twitter.  Read more »
By the time most American Idol seasons come to a close, fans havecompletely forgotten about all the audition episodes and they might noteven remember the first time they saw the winner.  Read more »
So who will replace Simon Cowell when he leaves American Idol at the end of this season?Everybody‘s got their own ideas (and we do, too) but if there‘s one thing, it‘s that the lines in front of that door that says "help wanted" is getting long--well, at least according to Idol creator Simon Fuller.  Read more »
Did you get "Pants on the Ground" stuck in your head after last night‘s American Idol? I thought so, too. I got over it (or so I think) but definitely many others didn‘t--it was, for a few hours, a Twitter trending topic, and like many other things nowadays, you‘re not a big thing if you haven‘t made it to that list.But what exactly led Larry Platt to the song? Better yet, what led him to American Idol--a 63-year-old who is waaay past the 28-year-old age limit the show imposes?  Read more »
This week, BuddyTV‘s newest web series continues as Sarah East discusses the future of American Idol. As our resident Non-Prophet, Sarah will use her keen inner eye to predict the outcomes and themes of this season. We‘re only one week into auditions but Sarah‘s already got American Idol pegged. She doesn‘t give away the winner but she does drop a few hints about the drama of season 9.  Read more »
2010 seems to have it‘s first genuine meme courtesy of American Idol Atlanta auditioner General Larry Platt and his original song, "Pants on the Ground." Since General Platt‘s introduction to America on Wednesday, he and his song have been seemingly everywhere. Jimmy Fallon (as Neil Young) has covered "Pants on the Ground." Attack of Show wrote a PSA using the words to "Pants on the Ground." Brett Favre led his team in a locker room rendition of the song.This morning the General himself stopped by The View to perform his "hit." At this point, even my Mom, who‘s never watched a single episode of American Idol, probably knows the words to Pants on the Ground.  Read more »
Her stint as an American Idol guest judge might not have gone well with everyone, but it seems there‘s still a place for Victoria Beckham on the show: as a stylist.The Daily Mirror reports that the show‘s creator, Simon Fuller, has approached the former Spice Girl to design the looks of the contestants when the live shows come along by March. She‘s been offered roughly $98,000 per episode, a source said, and negotiations are currently ongoing.  Read more »
We may have discovered season 9‘s unlikely break-out star and hit song during last week‘s Atlanta auditions, but the search for an actual American Idol is still on tonight in Chicago. We‘re hopeful that tonight will feature no pants on the ground, fewer train wrecks, and at least one contestant who makes Shania Twain say something other than "That Don‘t Impress Me Much." Yes, tonight will be full of Shania Twain puns, so be prepared and don‘t say I didn‘t warn you what was coming "From This Moment On." If you‘re not one for Shania-shenanigans you can always say "I‘m Outta Here!" (Thank you, thank you I‘ll be here all night!) No really, I will be. So follow along with my Idol thoughts right here and on Twitter in 140 characters or less.  Read more »
2009 was a big year for Anoop Desai.  After finishing sixth on American Idol,he toured the country with the show and started working on his music. Now in 2010 he‘s ready to take things to the next level, with a newalbum and new aspirations.We spoke to Anoop about his songwriting and first album, what it‘s really like to be on American Idol, and his thoughts on Paula Abdul, Ellen Degeneres and Simon Cowell.  Read more »
With Hollywood Week just wrapping up and the Top 24 being chosen for season 9 of American Idol, 24 people have to keep the biggest secret of their lives for a few weeks. Even if our Top 24 can keep their mouths shut about their big news, there are seven unspoken give-aways that you‘ve made American Idol.If you made it to Hollywood week and you‘ve done any of the last seven things in the past few days, it‘s pretty safe to say we‘ll be seeing you on that big stage come February 23rd. Read more »
We‘ll be doing this more often, I hope: a stripped-down and more intensive (I think) American Idol news roundup. In today‘s edition: Carrie Underwood on set, Randy jams with the Roots, and what Kara wants to do to Heidi Montag.  Read more »
The search for the next American Idol continues tonight in sunnyOrlando, Florida; a city we sincerely hope has more genuine contendersthan Chicago. 12,000 auditioners and 13 golden tickets? You almost have better odds winning the Lotto. I am hopeful that last night‘s trend of awesome celebrity guest judging continues tonight with the bubbly blonde addition of Kristin Chenoweth to the panel. Hopefully her Broadway background means at least one kid singing a show tune will get through to Hollywood.  Read more »
There are plenty of books, DVDs and video games out there designed to help train your vocals so you can become the next American Idol.  But just as important as what you do is what you DON‘T do.  When auditioning for American Idol, there are some major landmines that contestants still step on.Here are seven simple things that, if done during an Idol audition, will almost certainly spell your demise.  Read more »
He may not have gotten a golden ticket to Hollywood, but overnight starLarry Platt and his original song "Pants on the Ground," may have founda record label. News broke this afternoon that the 62 year-old break-out star of season 9 of American Idol has been offered a record deal byJake Records. The label‘s CEO, Scott Thomas, was effusive in his excitement for LarryPlatt when he spoke to Ace Showbiz."General Larry Platt has an energy about him that is infectious. We‘dlove to work withMr. Platt to generate some exposure for his original song, but also thecauses that he holds near and dear to him."  I‘m not surethat Larry Platt needs a label to help with exposure of Pants on theGround, it seems to be getting plenty of exposure on it‘s own.  Read more »
On the frenzy that is American Idol today: whatever happened to that dude who provided the "drama" in last night‘s show? Plus, another guy from last season takes the plunge, and more of those pants. Not ripped.  Read more »
Here‘s a scoop that will hopefully make American Idol fans happy. Jordin Sparks, winner of the sixth season of the singing reality competition, will soon be gracing the halls of Bones‘ Jeffersonian lab, according to TV Guide Magazine.  Read more »
A number of familiar faces from American Idol will be joining today‘shuge Hope for Haiti Now telethon. The telethon, which starts at 8pm EST,will be broadcast on just about every major network: ABC, CBS, NBC,FOX, CNN, BET, The CW, HBO, MTV, VH1, CMT, PBS, TNT, Showtime, COMEDYCENTRAL, Bravo and E!. You can also watch the telethon right here onBuddyTV. Joining seemingly every gigantic celebrity alive--we‘re talking GeorgeClooney and Madonna sized celebs--will be former Idol contestantsDavid Archuleta, Katharine McPhee, and Jennifer Hudson. Jennifer isscheduled to showcase her Oscar winning pipes during the telethon, while Archie and McPhee aredoing their part by answering phones and taking donations. Davidconfirmed this last night via Twitter.  Read more »
American Idol isn‘t just a star maker, it‘s a news maker! With 8seasons of former contestants and favorites, there‘s a new Idol relatednews story on the internet seemingly every minute! Today‘s big Idolnews makers involve: a baby, Angela Martin‘s continued Idol curse, Adam Lambert as a red carpetcorrespondent, a platinum record, and who Anoop Desai will be rootingfor come season 9.  Read more »
What just happened on the American Idol front? Lots, duh! On this roundup, we talk about Kris Allen heading to Haiti to help out, as well as possible replacements for Simon Cowell, and Carrie Underwood blogging about her How I Met Your Mother guest stint.  Read more »
I‘m starting to wonder if I‘m the only person in America who doesn‘tthink "Pants on the Ground" is hilarious. While everyone else iswhipping out covers and losing their collective minds, I still findmyself scratching my head and thinking "is this even a song?" To me, itsounds like something a guy mumbles to himself over and over again on acrowded bus. You know, the guy who you desperately try to avoid eyecontact with? But maybe I‘m just a hater or I can‘t appreciate it‘ssubtle genius, because General Larry Platt and "Pants on the Ground" are a continuing and growingsensation.  Read more »
Details are emerging about Simon Cowell‘s charity single for Haiti. Aswe reported last week, Cowell was recruited by British Prime MinsterGordon Brown to orchestrate a charity single to benefit the devastatedcountry of Haiti. Today we learn what the single will be and a growing list of the big name stars who will be lending their voices to the project.As reported this morning by MTV, Cowell‘s single will be an all-starcover of REM‘s melancholy anthem "Everybody Hurts." Joining Cowell‘sBritish reality star proteges Leona Lewis (X Factor) and Susan Boyle(Britain‘s Got Talent) will be some of the biggest names in thebusiness. While confirmation hasn‘t come for every reported celebrityparticipant, a tentative list includes: Beyonce, Mariah Carey, MileyCyrus, Lady Gaga, Bon Jovi, Wyclef Jean, Rod Stewart, Take That, Mika,James Blunt, and Michael Buble. Hopefully some big name American Idol stars will also join the cause soon.  Read more »
It seems like everyone, absolutely everyone, is vying for Simon Cowell‘s soon to be empty chair on American Idol. Just yesterday we reported that Jamie Foxx was a contender for Cowell‘s chair, and today we can add the craziest name to the list yet: Martha Stewart. Yes, THAT Martha Stewart. The woman who can make water from scratch. At a gala in New York this weekend, Martha told a reporter from OK! Magazine that she thinks she‘s the perfect person to fill Mr. Nasty‘s v-necked void. Martha had this to say about why she‘s best suited for Simon‘s spot, "I‘d be the best American Idol judge because I‘m fair." Read more »
Last week, I wrote a piece on "How Not To Keep Your American Idol Semi-Final Spot a Secret." Unfortunately, purported top 24 memberMichael Lynche didn‘t read it. In a big shake up of the pre-seasonspoilers, it was reported that Lynche (who we‘ve yet to see) wasdisqualified from the Top 24 for violating the show‘s confidentialityclause. Though the story should really read, "disqualified for hisfather violating the show‘s confidentiality clause." Lynche should havepaid closer attention to number two on my how to spoil your Idol spot piece: tell the gossipy member of your family.  Read more »
American Idol heads home to Los Angeles tonight, where thousands ofsingers (and plenty of non-singers) with Hollywood dreams willaudition. Joining the usual cast of characters -- 2 billion percentDawg, I‘m Not Paula, and Mr. I-am-SO-Out-Of-Here -- at tonight‘s judgespanel will be pop-provocateur Katy Perry and pink punk princess AvrilLavigne. As always, I‘ll be here sharing my Idol thoughts live,complete with the official Katy and Avril ratings of thememorable auditions. In honor of Katy Perry being a guest judge, I had grand plans to rewritethe lyrics to her hit single "I Kissed A Girl," so they would apply tothe American Idol audition process. But you don‘t even need to rewritethem...they apply as is. "Thiswas never the way I planned, not my intention. I got so brave, drink inhand, lost my discretion." If you told me Katy Perry wrote that about the awful American Idol auditions, I would believe you. The auditions NEVER go the way they were planned (save the plants) and they ALWAYS seem to involve a loss of discretion. And having a drink in hand (and three or four in thebelly) certainly could explain some of the auditions we‘ve been treatedto so far this season. Read more »
How do you get a body like The Situation?  How do you make every mansay "J-Woww!!!"?  These are questions that, for Jersey Shore fans, burn hotter than the urinary tract of Pauly D‘s latest conquest.The simple answer is: GTL.  But some of our favorite TV charactersmight be unsure that this intense regimen of gym, tanning and laundry isright for them. To help them--and you--out, we put together someexpert renderings of what our favorite TV stars would look like if theygot tanned, juiced, and poufed-up as our favorite Jersey Shore cast members. It‘s no wonder those guidos and guidettes (their words!) always getting arrested on Jersey Shore, because it should be a crime to look this good.   Read more »
In between guest judges, bad auditions and pretty good talent, there are the other bits that happen within the American Idol universe. Should work, right? Then again, in this edition we have bits about guest judges. And Project Runway and Kris Allen.  Read more »
Update: The list‘s complete again, and Michael Lynche‘s status is still unsure, although his alleged disqualification turned out to be a rumor.Just two cities into the audition process on American Idol and word on the web is, we already know most of who‘ll be making it through Hollywood and taking the big Idol stage. With Hollywood week filming wrapping up, names of our possible Top 24 contestants started leaking out on to Idol-obsessed blogs such as Vote for the Worst and Joe‘s Place. Of course, as is the case with all spoilers, these should be taken with a grain of salt. That being said, just two cities worth of auditions and there‘s already a handful of names on this list that I recognize. Not to mention, a couple I‘m shocked to see missing.  Read more »
Howdy American Idol fans! For tonight‘s auditions we‘ll be two-steppingto Texas with two new guest judges. Since everything is bigger in Texas, we‘re hoping the talent is larger than life, rather than the train wrecks. Joining the judges panel tonight will be Joe Jonas (tentative golf clap) and Neil Patrick Harris (huge deafening cheers). A Le-Gen-Dairy night of How I Met Your Mother quotes and as many Texas puns as I can muster awaits us all. Watch with me live and keep your fingers crossed that the Dallas auditions provide more than a lone star.  Read more »
Carrie Underwood is about to step on the biggest stage of her life.Sure, she‘s won American Idol and four Grammys, but come February 7thshe‘ll be singing The Star Spangled Banner for the 90 million plus folks whotune in to Superbowl XLIV. E! Online‘s Mark Malkin broke the nationalanthem news this morning on his Twitter. Carrie will be following in the footsteps of some fellow Idolcontestants. Jennifer Hudson sang the national anthem at last years‘super bowl and in 2008 the then reigning winner Jordin Sparks beltedout the Star Spangled Banner. Carrie won‘t be the only big name starsinging at this years Super Bowl, Queen Latifah will also be performing"America the Beautiful" and The Who will be rocking the game‘s big halftime show. Read more »
Of all the potential replacements for Simon Cowell floated around theinternet, this is the worst: Perez Hilton. Even the thought of Perez onmy television two nights a week makes my skin crawl. Apparently thegossip blogger, who recently started his own record label, isinterested in taking Simon‘s place on American Idol, though he‘d alsobe happy to join Simon at the X Factors‘ judges table. Perez shared his Idol dreams with MTV News this week saying, "I think that Simon Cowell leaving American Idol is amazing, because those are two potential jobs that I may have in thefuture." Hilton continued, "I‘d be a great judge, but I‘d also happily be a judgealong with Simon Cowell on his U.S. version of ‘X Factor.‘ Basically,I‘m shamelessly looking for work. I‘m available. And I‘m cheap!"  Read more »
Remember those rumors of Paula Abdul being wooed to join The X Factor? Simon apparently told her that over there, things would be more peaceful and less tense than the American Idol set. That‘s one thought you might want to keep in mind as you read today‘s Idol roundup, including a possible feud between Simon and Ellen--and fake feuds, and actual tears. But first... Read more »
Season 8‘s lovable red-haired rocker slowed things down for LosAngeles‘ KISS 102.7, where she performed three acoustic tracks off herrecently released debut album Just Like You. Even slowed down, Allison still shows the spunk, multi-colored hair and undeniable vocal talent that enamored the judges and America so much last season. Listening to Allison perform these songs, I still feel a tinge of shock that she wasn‘t one of the final two standing at the end of season 8. She may not have been America‘s Idol, but with pipes and presence like that, I suspect she‘ll have a richer career than many who‘ve taken home the Idol crown. Read more »
FOX has figured out a sure-fire way to avoid season 8‘s chronicinability to finish on time, add more hours to American Idol. Thenetwork has announced they‘ll be extending the Top 11, Top 10, and Top9 performance shows to two hours each. As has been the case in previousseasons, the Top 12 performance show will also be a two hour event.That means from the Top 24 performance to the Top 9 results show, Idolfans will experience a full 24 hours of American Idol.Our feelings on the additional hours of Idol are mixed. On the positiveside, it hopefully means no one will miss the best performance of theentire season because their DVR stopped recording at the regularlyscheduled end time. (No, I‘m not at all still bitter about missing AdamLambert‘s "Mad World" last season. Not. At. All.) Also in the positivecolumn, is the lessons learned from the fall season of So You Think YouCan Dance, who‘s hour long performance shows felt manically rushedwithout intro packages and "filler."  Read more »
You are not hallucinating that headline America. But not to worry, theGeneral and his anti-sagging anthem isn‘t nominated for a Grammy, norwill he be performing on the big Grammy stage. Nope, General Larry Platt will beperforming his song "loud and proud" on the Grammy red carpet accordingto Platt‘s manager via TMZ. (Yes, Larry Platt has a manager.) Seeing that Adam Lambert will also be on the Grammy red carpet, I forone am hoping for a General and Glambert meet up. Since Adam favors skinny jeans to sagging ones, he and the General should get along just fine. Plus, if anyone could makethe General‘s song into an even bigger sensation, it‘s Adam and hissignature falsetto.  Read more »
Danny Gokey. Has any generic American Idol contestant ever been morecontroversial? Having missed much of last season, save Oscar‘s recaps,I never fully understood why any one cared either way about the mild-mannered music teacher from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. But you do,enough to leave countless comments both defending and deriding TheGokey. Sorry to say that Gokey‘s just released video for his song "The BestDays Are Ahead of Me" won‘t be changing anyone‘s mind about him. If you loved him and his church-perfect voice and message during Idol,you‘ll love the video and its power of positive thinking slogans andmessage. If you thought Gokey was cheesier than cheddar, those sameslogans and positive phrases, are going to have you reaching for a barfbucket faster than you can say "sob-story."  Read more »
In the middle of the Grammys heat, there‘s more stuff on the American Idol front to deal with, involving a senator-to-be, a possible knight, and the ongoing search for Simon Cowell‘s replacement. Some race this turned out to be.  Read more »
Is American Idol really on its way out? This early in the season, the ratings juggernaut is showing chinks in its previously infallible armor, as rival procedural NCIS is starting to gain ground against it.While Idol still won the night on Tuesday last week, its Los Angeles audition episode was down 12 percent, resulting to 24.2 million viewers. NCIS, meanwhile, while also slightly down, reeled in 20.2 mil, resulting in the closest margin yet between the two shows. Read more »
Whether they were on the red carpet or watching the ceremony from home, former American Idol contestants and winners, were Tweeting away about last night‘s Grammy Awards. From Adam Lambert to Alexis Grace to Kelly Clarkson, everyone had 140 character updates on which winner‘s they were most excited for, their own Grammy dreams, and the high-flying awesomeness of Pink‘s performance. Here‘s what you missed if you‘re not following your favorite Idols on Twitter. But you are following BuddyTV_Idol, right? Read more »
American Idol news doesn‘t stop for the Grammys! Nope, the Idol newmachine keeps rolling on. But since music‘s biggest night was also a big night for at least one Idol, we will start there. Huge congrats to season 4 winner CarrieUnderwood who was the only Idol winner at last night‘s Grammys. She wonher fifth Grammy last night for her duet with Randy Travis. "I Told YouSo" won for Best Country Collaboration with Vocals.  Read more »
As the Idol audition train is about to make it‘s final stop in Denverbefore FINALLY rolling into Hollywood week, the Idol news machine keepsa chug-chug-chugging along at full-speed. Today brings news of another Idol joiningin the Super Bowl festivities, more on Idol involvement in charitysingles for Haiti, and news on that black magic woman who you eitherlove or hate, Carly Smithson. First up, good news for Chris Daughtry fans and Super Bowl watchers.According to mjsbigblog American Idol‘s beloved bald rocker will be opening the Super Bowl‘sPre-Game Tail Gate party. If Daughtry‘s performance pans out, whichseeing that he‘s participating in a Super Bowl press conference onThursday seems like a pretty sure thing, he‘ll be in good Idol company.As we reported last week, Carrie Underwood will be singing the NationalAnthem for this year‘s Super Bowl.  Read more »
It‘s almost here, the moment Idol fans have been waiting for with both trepidation and excitement: Ellen De Generes‘ official debut.  We‘ve known for months that Ellen would be on Idol, but how she will interact with Ryan, Randy, Kara, Simon, and the contestants is a complete mystery. (Save the feud rumors already floating around.) Next Tuesday our questions and curiosities will begin to be answered, as Ellen makes her official Idol debut with the start of Hollywood week. We‘ll get our first glimpse of the comedienne and hopefully we like what we see, because she‘s signed on for five seasons of the show.  Read more »
Tonight American Idol and Posh Spice join the mile high club (of sorts)as the Idol auditions make their final stop in Denver, Colorado.Hopefully, the high altitude and lack of oxygen makes the judges,especially Victoria Beckham, a little kicky or punch drunk. While shesaid more than Joe Jonas, Posh‘s Idol debut was a bit of a robot snooze fest.Hopefully her return trip to the judges‘ table provides more insightfrom The Posh One. Or at least some of her classic Posh "oh no you didn‘t biatch" face.Look, she‘s demonstrating it right there on the judges panel. Itappears to be her signature look. Seriously, I was looking for oldSpice Girl photos (I know, you‘re jealous) and Posh doesn‘tsmile in a single one. This is about as close to a smile as I could find:Surrounded by smiles and peace signs, Posh remains stoic. The same could be said for her initial Idol auditions. Let‘s keep our fingers crossed America, that at least one auditioner makes her smile, for all our sakes.  Read more »
We‘re just one hour away from Hollywood week, when hopefully we‘ll havea lot more news about the season 9 contestants who can actually sing.Until then, there is still plenty of American Idol related news toreport. Today we have a sneak peak of a new David Cook track from highabove Time Square, the first official un-photoshopped photo of thejudges, and more on Simon and Ellen‘s brewing feud, if there‘s a feudat all.  Read more »
The city specific auditions are finally over, the Idol train is soonpulling into Hollywood, hopefully filled with people who can actuallysing, and it‘s just the right time to reflect on what city provided thebest and worst auditions. Was Boston wicked awesome or wicked awful?Was Atlanta hot or cold? Did Denver live up to the city‘s loftyelevation?To refresh your memory (because we wouldn‘t blame you one bit if you‘vetried to block the parade of train wrecks, small children, and sobstories out of your conscious thoughts) we‘ve included links to all ofour audition live thoughts and best/worst slideshows. After taking a stroll down Idol memory lane, be sure to vote in both polls - for the best and worst season 9 Idol audition city.  Read more »
On the final night of American Idol auditions before HollywoodWeek begins, we met young Aaron Kelly.  You‘d be smart to remember thatname, because you‘re going to be hearing it a lot over the next fewmonths.The sweet 16-year-old Aaron is the perfect contestant coming in at theperfect time, and I feel confident that he‘ll get very far in thiscompetition, with a strong possibility of winning the whole thing.  Howcan I be so sure Aaron Kelly is American Idol material?  All you need to do is look at the facts.  Read more »
Even though they said that Denver was the last stop in American Idol‘s nationwide audition tour, they lied. Because tonight we‘ll cram other noteworthy auditions that didn‘t quite make it in the city-specific episodes over the last few weeks into tonight‘s show. This episode was originally called "The Best of the Rest", until the folks at Fox changed it to "The Road to Hollywood". That makes tonight‘s episode a little pointless, at least to me. Uhh, why do we have to do this again? Can‘t we just go straight to Hollywood and Ellen DeGeneres?Well, we‘re here anyway. And take comfort: this is the last audition show before Hollywood. One more hour of train wrecks (unless we believe the "we saved the best for last" line in last night‘s tease), delusional contestants, and Ryan Seacrest being very patronizing about contestants who are either "survivors" or have "faced the odds". And, yes, one more hour of auditioners who will hopefully blow our minds. And then, no more: we‘re one step closer to the actual competition. Let‘s just hope this hour is all worth it. I‘ll be here for the next hour, and I‘ll also be on Twitter, possibly ranting in between train wrecks. Let‘s all answer my question together: do we actually need this episode?I apologize for sounding so cynical. Watching weeks of audition episodes has that effect. Read more »
We‘ve seen the photos, we‘ve heard the rumors, but today we finally get our first glimpse of Ellen DeGeneres: the American Idol judge. Sure it‘s only a fifteen second glimpse, but it still provides a few shades of Ellen: the sweet, the funny, the snarly. Watch for yourself:  Read more »
I have a question, kids: is there a good way to remove a song out of your head? Throughout the day I‘ve been hearing one thing: "I‘m a beautiful man flower, I keep blossoming and blossoming..." okay, sorry about that. Here‘s your American Idol roundup, then, featuring a fighting Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood on the big screen, and that dude scratching his butt in a bikini.  Read more »
Let the scandals begin. It happens every audition season, inevitablyone of the auditioners who American Idol chose to focus on has anunknown arrest record, naked pictures, or a previous recording contractthat managed to sneak past Idol‘s crack background check. It‘s not evenHollywood week and season 9 is shaping up to have it‘s own scandals.Not only is there Matt Lawrence, who we already know robbed a bank witha bebe gun, Toddrick Hall‘s possibly shady past, and Angela Martin‘smissing mom, now there is also the shirtless wonder‘s arrest record anda Denver auditioner exposed as a habitual reality TV contestant.  Read more »
With season 10 of Dancing With the Stars fast arriving, it‘s the perfect time tothink of the celebrities, singers, and pseudo-celebrities a like who couldregain and retain the lime-light with a little sequined shimmy acrossthe dance floor. As a long time viewers of DWTS, we know the mostsuccessful contestants come in five flavors: athletes, people trying toextend their 15 minutes of fame, political figures, has-been TV andmovie stars, and "musicians." (Yes, the inclusion of Aaron Carter as a musician last season madethose quotation marks necessary.)These are the "stars" (yes, every season of Dancing with the Stars makethose quotation marks necessary) we‘d be most excited to see on thetenth season of DWTS. Read more »
The world talks about the Super Bowl, but I‘m still talking about American Idol. On this edition of the roundup, more talk about who‘s replacing who, plus Kelly Clarkson on child stars and Kris Allen‘s little postcard of sorts from his Philippine gigs. Oh, and I did mention the Super Bowl, right?  Read more »
We hoped it was a horrible rumor.But it appears there‘s more truth than fiction to the report thatHoward Stern is being considered as a replacement for Simon Cowell onAmerican Idol.The shock jock took some time on his show this morningto discuss the Idol rumors and in a very Howard way, he managed to stirup even more controversy. While FOX has denied approaching the shock jock, Stern confirmed thatthere has been interest in him permanently joining the Idol judgingpanel. Perhaps most shocking of all, Stern thinks he‘d be just the guyfor the job. "If I do say so myself, I can‘t imagine anyone else but mereplacing[Cowell]. I mean, I don‘t know. How else are they goingto make that show work? Who knows how to broadcast and who knows how tobe interesting? And who‘s not afraid to speak their mind?" Read more »
We‘re just a day away from Ellen DeGeneres taking her place behind the American Idol judges table and hopefully a Hollywood week full of people who canactually sing. Just because we‘ve reached imminent countdown time (youall have an Ellen to Idol countdown clock going right?), doesn‘t meanthat there still isn‘t time for another sneak peek of the comedienne. This week‘s clip seems specifically made to allay the fears of folkswho think Ellen will spend all her time cracking jokes, rather thanjudging. The 30 second clip shows Ellen critiquing as much as crackingwise. I have to admit, the clip worked on me. I‘m eager to see Ellenand her brand of compassionate humor and quick wit step behind thetable tomorrow. Read more »
Let‘s soothe our senses after Howard Stern expresses his interest in replacing Simon Cowell. It‘s an American Idol roundup, with loads of videos: delayed AOL sessions, an interview with David Cook, and a worm. No, really.  Read more »
As the Black Eyed Peas famously and annoyingly sang, "tonight‘s going to be a good night." Or is it? With the debut of Ellen De Generes as a permanent American Idol judge, we have more than a few concerns about the comedienne‘s new role at the judge‘s table. Blame it on her failed joke of a guest judge stint on So You Think You Can Dance or her penchant for making her own guest‘s dance, but Ellen‘s Idol audition could very well go the way of every other Idol audition: train wreck or surprisingly awesome. We‘re rooting for Ellen to wow us, so we‘ve created a list of the top "do‘s and don‘t‘s" for her Idol success. If she just follows this simple list, we‘ll hopefully be singing Ellen‘s praises, instead of grimacing at lame punchlines and unfortunate dance moves.  Read more »
In our least favorite rumor of 2010, word on the web is Howard Stern might replace Simon Cowell on American Idol. There are about, ohlets see, 6 billion people we‘d rather see replace Simon than HowardStern. And I‘m pretty sure the censors at FOX feel the same way.Since 6 billion is a pretty hefty list, we‘ve narrowed it down to fivefolks we‘d much rather see take Simon‘s place at the judge‘s table than America‘s most notorious shock jock.  Read more »
Over three weeks of American Idol auditions, both Abbey and I have picked favorites, and we don‘t always agree, but we both had a favorite in Danelle Hayes, the covers singer from Seattle who auditioned in Denver in a bit to get out of her rut and give herself a break. Her audition may be a little OTT, but she more than made up for it with intensity and raw emotion, one that I rarely see in the show lately. She got four yeses and a golden ticket......and unfortunately, that was it.  Read more »
After what seemed like months in the desert wastelands of train wrecks,sob stories, and place holder celebrity guest judges, we have finallygotten to the promised land...Hollywood and Ellen De Generes! HopefullyIdol and Ellen‘s arrival in sunny So-Cal means we‘ll see a lot moresingers and a lot less sobbing, not to mention a guest judge who saysmore than 40 words. (I‘m looking at you, Joe Jonas.)  Watch along with me tonight as we get our first glimpse of Ellen as aguest judge (we hope she follows our do‘s and don‘ts) and hopefully geta lot more screen time with singers who have a semblance of a chance atthe Top 24. (Unlike say, the majority of the audition process.) It might be too much to ask, but hopefully we even get apeek at the person who will become the next American Idol. So drag your TV close to your computer and watch along with me live tonight as American Idol and Ellen go to Hollywood. Oh....and some singers tag along too!  Read more »
Hollywood Week on American Idol means a lot of things to a lotof people, but for me, it‘s the time of validation.  Contestants who Ihated like "country girl" Vanessa Wolfe or people who had no businessgetting a Golden Ticket like Skii Bo Ski and the guy who split hispants are instantly eliminated, proving that they didn‘t deserve allthat audition screen time.But Hollywood Week is also the chance to become a star, to startgetting you name and face out there to the American Idol voters, andthat‘s exactly what Andrew Garcia did.  Read more »
This week‘s biggest American Idol story: Howard Stern as a guest judge. He says he‘d love to, the producers say there are no plans, and everybody seems to not like the decision--well, almost everybody, because the fans would love it. That‘s how we kick off tonight‘s American Idol roundup, with contributions from Conan O‘Brien and those Coke cups. Read more »
Grab your popcorn kiddos, because tonight Hollywood Week is going totake a turn to the dramatic. If last night was all about laughter, tonight‘s grueling group challenge is sure to be filled with the opposite: drama, tears, egos, and eventually a little bit of singing and dancing.You can pretty much guarantee we‘ll witness all of the following: catfights, lots and lots of crying, a diva melt down, terrible group names(White Chocolate, anyone?), at least one group performance you wish youcould buy on iTunes right now, and the crumbling of no less than onepre-season front runner. (Oh wait, that happened last night....we missyou Justin Williams.) Group week all but promises to bring out the bestand the worst of American Idol and tonight you‘ll be treated to both. Watch along with me as we witness 96 singers vying for the title ofAmerican Idol attempt to work together, to varying degrees of success. We‘ll be here recapping the good, bad, and the ugly for you. So drag your TV close to your computer and watch along with me as Hollywood Week continues and we get one step closer to the Top 24 and finding the next American Idol. Read more »
Ellen DeGeneres‘ first week as American Idol judge: done.It feels like just yesterday when Ellen was announced as Paula Abdul‘s permanent replacement on the show. I remember going, "oh, great, it‘s Ellen!" Suddenly Simon Cowell has to deal with a whole new set of wit, and who knows what possibilities that could unleash.  Read more »
Did FOX read our "Five People We‘d Rather See Judge ‘Idol‘ Than HowardStern" piece? If the rumor du jour of Conan O‘Brien replacing SimonCowell is to be believed, perhaps. According to Perez Hilton (anotherperson we recommended for Simon‘s replacement) FOX is interested ineveryone‘s favorite unemployed ginger joining American Idol as a judge. According to an anonymous inside FOX source, "Idolbosses think he‘d be a huge draw now after all that Leno fuss." Wethink (and hope) this rumor is a joke. Other than having a house bandfor his show and hosting musical guests, Conan has nothing to do withthe music industry and one lay-person and comedian‘s opinion on thejudge‘s panel is enough. Sure he played a fine guitar on "Freebird" during the last Tonight Show, but that does not a music expert make. Read more »
Yesterday I had the chance to chat with American Idol judge KaraDioguardi as part of a conference call hyping Hollywood Week and thearrival of Ellen DeGeneres. Kara‘s excitement of not being the new kidat the judge‘s table was palpable as she chatted about Ellen‘s arrivaland refused to talk about Paula‘s departure. While all Abdul related topics were off-limits, Kara happily chattedabout American Idol‘s newest judge, her hopes of a girl winning season9, and Didi Benani‘s choice to cover one of her songs. Kara was alsoquick to dispel rumors of an Ellen and Simon feud, reminding reporters,"I think you have to take any rumor you hear about American Idolwith a grain of salt." But that didn‘t stop Kara from giving a seriousanswer (and smack down) when it came to reports that Howard Stern mightbe the next American Idol judge.  Here‘s what Kara had to say aboutseason 9, rumors and all.  Read more »
Expect Ellen DeGeneres to defuse a potentially explosive situation with her skewed take on things. So what about those rumors of tensions between her and Simon Cowell on the American Idol set? What feud? There‘s no feud, Ellen insists...  Read more »
It‘s Thursday night in American Idol land. Ellen‘s through with her first week on the show, we‘ve seen many of our favorites go, and there‘s a lot of stuff to talk about. As always, that brings us to today‘s news roundup, featuring Danelle Hayes‘ bad luck, Danny Gokey‘s wishes, and Kara DioGuardi stripping down. Yes, that headline was correct.  Read more »
Good news for Paula Abdul fans going into severe Paula-withdrawal. Theformer-American Idol judge dropped heavy hints this morning that she‘llbe returning to a small screen near you soon. On this morning‘s Johnnjayand Rich Show, Paula said that her next project would involve a returnto her roots and TV. Paula wouldn‘t give specifics, but when asked for a clue on her nextproject she responded, "Drop a clue? Oh, I‘m gonna be going back to myroots and doing a TV show that has something to do with my roots."   Read more »
Now, I‘m not a believer in Valentine‘s Day--I‘m more or less unlucky at love--but I won‘t play the grinch. On this extra special edition of the American Idol roundup, hearts day treats from Jordin Sparks and Anoop Desai, plus Adam Lambert in mourning, Carrie Underwood in production, and... a love team.  Read more »
As expected, Simon Cowell‘s Haiti charity single, a cover of REM‘s "Everybody Hurts", has topped the British charts this week.The single, which features X Factor winners Leona Lewis and Alexandra Burke, Britain‘s Got Talent breakout Susan Boyle, and established artists such as Kylie Minogue, Rod Stewart, Mariah Carey, Robbie Williams and Take That, sold over 453,000 copies in its first week alone.  Read more »
And since when did you care for what you called a "f--ing karaoke show"?Just when we thought the issue with Howard Stern supposedly replacing Simon Cowell on American Idol has died down, he speaks again. On his radio show on Sirius Satellite Radio, he asserted that the show‘s newest judge, Ellen DeGeneres, will ruin the competition.  Read more »
The Top 24 closer than we all imagined--and by closer, I mean in an hour or so--and we‘ll have lots to talk about later, but for now, here‘s another one of those American Idol roundups. On today‘s edition: the Kradison pre-gig interview, more Idols on Broadway, and that thing Adam did last night.  Read more »
American Idol may be in Hollywood this week, but my mind is in Vancouver, Canada, with the Winter Olympics. Sure, Idol has plenty of drama and intrigue, but it lacks the jaw-dropping athletic stunts that viewers expect of the Olympics. And with Paula Abdul gone, Idol is also losing to the Olympics in the all-important sequins per-square-inch competition. Seeing that Idol is the second greatest competition in the world this week, we‘ve decided to bring a bit of the Olympic spirit to Hollywood week.Tonight we‘ll award Idol competitors bronze, silver, and gold medals, and disqualify some competitors who aren‘t up to snuff. As we know, there‘s a lot of mediocrity to suffer through before we get to the top 24. So watch along with me tonight as we learn the fate of some of the top 24 and we literally inch closer--remember, this is a two-hour show--to that top 24 podium. Read more »
With Simon Cowell‘s time on American Idol drawing to an end, it‘s timeto stop cracking wise about possible replacements for Simon (please nomore Howard Stern rumors) and start thinking about honest to goodnessreplacements for Mr. Nasty.  Let‘s start with a couple requirements: Not only should Simon‘sreplacement have a bit of his characteristic caustic wit, they shouldhave some serious music industry gravitas. Simon is a star-maker andwhoever replaces him needs to have a star-studded track record. .Withthat in mind, here‘s our short list of of suitable replacements forSimon, people we‘d be excited to see join the American Idol judgestable.   Read more »
Remember Kris Allen talking about him visiting earthquake-stricken Haiti? Remember all the fuss around it not happening because he spoke too soon, and later, him saying it‘ll happen in a later date? Let‘s make it official, then.First, last year‘s American Idol winner is still going to Haiti, although within this month. He‘s going with the folks from the United Nations Foundation Fund to see things for himself and to spread awareness about the plight of the quake victims even more.  Read more »
It is finally here. Time to learn who we‘ll actually be voting and rooting for on American Idol and not just the people we‘ll be cursing for wasting our time. Of course, most of that blame belongs squarely on the shoulders of the editor‘s of American Idol. But I digress and shed my negativity, because tonight we learn the fate of the Top 24, er, Top 17, actually ... we already know the fate of seven Idol semi-finalists. Watch along with me tonight for what Ryan promises is going to be a drama-filled Top 24 17 announcement. Which pre-season favorite narrowly misses the semi-finals? What previously unseen contestant will wow us? How many times can Ellen fake out unsuspecting hopefuls before we beg for Paula‘s return? Stick with me to find out.  Read more »
It‘s always like this at the end of every Hollywood round. American Idol‘s Top 24 is announced, and some of them are brimming with potential, while some are poised to tank before they could even start the car. The same, of course, goes for this year, but thanks to the oversell of the past few weeks--sob stories repeated ad infinitum, mostly--I‘ve got a much clearer idea on who will actually make it far.Last year, Kris Allen and Adam Lambert--two artists who have the ability to take a song, spin it around until unrecognizable, and present it as their own--faced off in one of the more exciting finales yet. This year, I think the same thing could happen. Major difference: it‘s the ladies who dominate this field. Crystal Bowersox, Didi Benami, Lacey Brown, Lilly Scott--sure, such contestants don‘t traditionally gain traction on the show, but I won‘t be surprised if they reach the Top 12 at the very least. The other scenario: there‘d be a huge outcry when one of them gets eliminated.  Read more »
Just when I thought I got the story of Chris Golightly‘s last minute disqualification from American Idol down pat, things get a little more complicated.First, details from last night: Golightly made it to the Top 24, but was dropped at the very last minute, allegedly because of an old contract. That‘s why we saw him in the group clip from last night‘s episode, even if there was no mention of him making the cut. The next thing we know, Tim Urban was in the Top 24.  Read more »
It may be Simon Cowell‘s final season on American Idol but don‘t expectthe caustic Brit to take a backseat in his judging duties or critiques.Simon is still Simon, as evidence by the smarmily charming interview hejust conducted with members of the American Idol press. I sat in on theconference call where Simon fielded questions about his Idolreplacement, the Top 24, rumors of a feud with Ellen, and his dreammentor for season 9 of American Idol. Simon answered them all with thewicked wit that has made him a household name and that will make him sodifficult to replace on American Idol. Here are the highlights from the interview.  Read more »
The TV season is just getting started, but today FOX announced thefinale dates for the 2009-2010 season including the end dates forAmerican Idol, Glee, Bones, and 24. Shows will start wrapping up in April with the Wanda Sykes show bowing out first on April 9, while Glee will be the last show to wrap up on June 8. Seeing that Glee doesn‘t start new episodes until after Wanda Sykes has had her last, the long stretch of finales makes sense.  Read more »
Finally, some good news for American Idol‘s most determined and cursed contestant, Angela Martin. As you know, Angela has made it to American Idol‘s Hollywood Week during three separate seasons only to have her dreams crushed by inexplicable tragedy and the judges‘ denial. For season 9, we were positive Angela would be in the Top 24, as her inspiring story and hard luck was featured heavily. Simon Cowell went as far as saying Angela was "the kind of story this show is all about." But as you know, it was not meant to be and Angela was told for a third and final time she would not be an American Idol semi-finalist. As Kara Dioguardi tried to soften the brutal blow, she told Angela "don‘t worry, there are other ways to succeed." And it would seem Kara, with the help of fellow Idol judge Ellen DeGeneres are doing all they can to make sure Angela does succeed.  Read more »
The American Idol Top 24 takes the stage next week and we get to hear all of them,not just the chosen few sing. Finally. And thanks to Ryan Seacrest, weknow what the Top 24 will be singing, or at least we know what thetheme will be. For the first week on Idol the Top 24 has beenchallenged to sing Top 10 tunes from Billboard‘s Hot 100. However, theIdol semi-finalists haven‘t been given free reign on that gigantictheme, there are some year restrictions. The Top 24 will be able to choose Top 10 tunes from the followingyears: 1958-1972, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010.   Read more »
For season 9 American Idol is doing a few things differently. The showis back to a Top 24, there‘s a new judge in, an old judge on the wayout, and the semi-finalists all have FOX sanctioned social mediaaccounts. Not only can you vote for the Top 24 on Idol, you can followthem on Twitter, be their friends on Myspace, and be their fan onFacebook. Don‘t expect any spoilers from the accounts, because I‘mcertain FOX is watching them with eagle eyes, but the numberof followers and fans do offer new insight into who America is mostfond of. While the Top 24‘s Twitter accounts have only been live for two days,there are some clear winners and losers when it comes to social media.The big winner? Andrew Garcia who has nearly 5,000 more followers thanany of his fellow Idol semi-finalists. As far as Twitter accounts go,the most popular lady in the competition is also the contestant withthe most pre-season buzz: Didi Benami. While Didi and Andrew can besitting pretty confident about their popularity (and safety comeThursday night) if I were Paige Mills, Toddrick Hall, Michelle Delamor,or Joe Munoz, I would be quaking in my boots. Paige, who has beenalmost completely MIA during the audition process has the fewestfollowers of any Idol semi-finalist with 448 followers.  Read more »
After all those schedule issues and premature announcements, American Idol winner Kris Allen finally flies to Haiti to visit the survivors of the huge earthquake that hit the country more than a month ago.Of course, he‘s been planning a visit since a week after the disaster, which has claimed hundreds of thousands of lives. It finally pushed through with the help of the United Nations Foundation. This Thursday night, Kris will appear on the Idol results show to show more footage from his visit to Haiti, give a performance, and ask for donations--effectively kicking off this year‘s Idol Gives Back.  Read more »
Sure, the Winter Olympics is in its final week, but American Idol expands to five hours for the first performance shows of the season.The Top 24 will be singing for your votes tomorrow, but the Bachelor women reunite tonight to dish about dating Jake.  This weekend, Jennifer Lopez is scheduled to make a bootylicious appearance on Saturday Night Live.For the full scoop and latest updates, check out the links below. Read more »
American Idol finally gets into game mode with the semifinals kicking off tomorrow night, and I couldn‘t be happier. There‘s an extra reason too, but first, today‘s American Idol roundup, featuring Chris Golightly‘s non-disappearance tactics, Simon Cowell‘s supposed engagement, and Jason Castro talking about his EP again.  Read more »
And our American Idol expert is... season 8‘s Anoop "Dawg" Desai. Every week Anoop will be sharing his insights on the performances and who he thinks will be sent packing come results night. Not only will he be sharing his insights, he‘ll be competing with you in our Fantasy TV league where you have a chance to show your American Idol dominance against a true expert, for some awesome prizes in our FantasyTV Contest.To get the games going, Anoop shared what makes him a qualified Idol expert, doles some advice out to the Top 24 and let‘s us in on who his early pre-season favorite is.  Read more »
Question, kids: was Chris Golightly, who was disqualified from American Idol last week after contract issues, royally shafted? Was it just a matter of everything going wrong at the worst possible time? Or is it, in fact, a good thing for him? Because really, he isn‘t going away, and it‘s been almost a week since he was kicked.I won‘t hide it from you guys: I don‘t like him. I don‘t like the way he trots out his back story (because if you‘re that good a singer, you‘re better off letting your talents do the talking). I did feel bad when he was disqualified, although I felt we didn‘t lose anything. But he hasn‘t disappeared: he‘s talking to the media, virtually pleading to be brought back, and last we heard, he‘s shopping around an autobiography which will outline, in part, why he shouldn‘t have been disqualified.  Read more »
Here we are America, the Top 24, well half of them, are finally taking the stage and singing. Yes, singing! That thing that has been suspiciously absent for the entire audition process despite the fact that American Idol is a show about singing. That all changes tonight when the Top 12 girls take the Idol stage and serenade us with Hot Billboard Singles from 1958-1972 and 2003-2010. Hopefully more of them go with our positive recommendations, instead of sullying themselves with the song suicide that‘s among our worst picks.Watch along with me tonight as we‘re introduced to all of the Top 12 ladies and not just the ones with sad back stories or amazing legs. (cough, cough, Janell Wheeler) If you were lucky enough to have avoided the Idol audition process, not only am I extremely envious of you, I‘m also a complete stranger. Since I‘ll be sharing your Idol journey this season, here‘s a little intro about me.Tonight it‘s all about the songs and not the sob stories, so if you want more information about Didi Benami‘s deceased best friend or Katie Stevens‘ Portuguese Grandmother, you‘re S.O.L. Tonight, finally, American Idol is a singing competition and I, for one, couldn‘t be more excited. Read more »
Even before American Idol auditions had begun, the chorus had started: "It is a girls‘ year to win Idol." During the auditions, which focused heavily on the ladies, it was clear the producers and FOX were pushing hard for Idol‘s first female victor since season 6‘s Jordin Sparks. That season 9 is all about the ladies is already an American Idol cliche. The chorus has been echoed ad nauseam by the judges, who in interviews have sung the praises of the talented, sure-to-be sensational women of season 9. So what happened last night? Only one performance really wowed me: Katelyn Epperly‘s bluesy boudoir rendition of "Oh Darling," but even that was nothing like the wow factor from week one of past seasons. Take last season, where contestants tackled the same Billboard Hot Singles challenge and where Danny Gokey and Adam Lambert had America dialing in in droves. Last night, whatever the chorus has been pre-season, there was no clear star.   Read more »
The Pimp Spot. Some say it‘s a baseless American Idol conspiracy theory. Some say it‘s the producers‘ way of highlighting or protecting the contestant they‘re most excited or invested in. Whether you‘re a conspiracy theorist or a pimp spot believer, it was completely wasted on Katie Stevens last night. If the pimp spot is a conspiracy theory, I happen to be a believer. You can‘t tell me that by complete random chance both Danny Gokey and Adam Lambert just happened to get the final performance slots during week one of season 8. Just like you can‘t convince me that Katie Stevens, a contestant that American Idol has been promoting since episode one of season 9, just happened upon the final spot last night. Thing is, randomness aside, Katie Stevens (and the Gokey‘s and Lambert‘s before her) are the last people who need the pimp spot.   Read more »
Season 9 of American Idol got started in earnest last night with the Top 12 Girls taking the stage, but instead of blowing us out of the water, I was left treading water -- and waiting for a wow performance. While the girls twinkled, they didn‘t blind me with their brilliance. Hopefully, that all changes tonight with a super (nova) performance from the Top 12 guys. Just like the girls, they‘ll be singing Hot Billboard singles and just like the ladies, we‘ve warned them what they should and should not be singing. Hopefully the guys take direction better than Katie Stevens. Read more »
First result show of the season! Yay!And not just because Allison Iraheta is performing tonight. I‘m honest.For once, tonight‘s American Idol results show is chock-full of things, and not just fillers about who‘s touching whose knee or who‘s blushing over who. Apart from the fact that four contestants will be eliminated tonight, there are also two performances from two of last season‘s frontrunners. And that‘s how I kick off your watchlist for tonight.  Read more »
Part of our American Idol Fantasy TV contest is beating our very own Idol expert, Anoop Desai. We introduced him to you earlier this week and now get an insider‘s thoughts on who could be going home tonight and why.  Read more »
We‘ve ranked the contestants, but they weren‘t the only folks to take to the Idol stage for the first time this week. There was, of course, Ellen. Now that she‘s out of Hollywood Week and on live TV, how do you think Ellen did as judge? Did she exceed your expectations? Or was her debut a disappointment? We want to know what you think of Ellen and how you would grade her performance this week. Is she an A student or does she deserve an F?My grade: A solid C.  She‘s neither failing nor excelling. She‘s clearly trying to counter Simon‘s negativity and be the positive force that Paula brought to the judges‘ table. When contestants were terrible this week she told them they were adorable or cute or that they didn‘t live up to their inherent potential. Unfortunately, when Ellen says such things it sounds belittling rather than complimentary, where as when Paula said the same, you simply wondered what she‘d spiked the magic Coke cup with that night. Read more »
Usually, I look forward to elimination nights on reality TV shows about as much as I look forward to a trip to the dentist. Why? Well, I worry about the dreams that I‘m about to witness being crushed on stage and that it might be one of my favorites who is sent packing. Usually I‘m asking, Can‘t you just eliminate one person instead of two? But there‘s nothing usual about tonight‘s American Idol elimination, where I find myself wondering: instead of four people, can‘t we send home ten instead?Sure, you can blame the poor performance of the Top 24 on nerves, but in every other season of Idol,semi-finalists were nervous too and never have I seen such an uninspiring introduction. Right now, I‘m looking at 24 contestants who have bright futures as wedding singers, buskers and stars of cruise ship reviews. There were performances I liked, even performances I liked a lot, but I‘m not sure there was a single performance that wowed me. And definitely not a single one that made me sit up and say, "now that‘s a super star."   Read more »
We‘ve seen Ellen DeGeneres swim the waters that is the first live week of American Idol. Abbey graded her a C, and I‘m thinking along the same way. But what did you think?After less than 24 hours of qualitative and quantitative research--really, just your comments and the poll over on Abbey‘s article last night--we have determined that you, the American Idol fan and BuddyTV user, have given Ellen‘s first week on the show a grade of:  Read more »
Surely you‘ve seen Perez Hilton‘s video on Funny or Die yesterday, where he officially launched his bid to be Simon Cowell‘s replacement on American Idol.  Read more »
Forgive my language, but what the bleep just happened?Ashley Rodriguez was eliminated on American Idol. That, I absolutely don‘t mind. Her performance Tuesday night was unforgivable, for someone pimped so hard.Joe Muñoz was eliminated, too. I feel a bit bad for it--he did churn out a solid performance Wednesday night--but having zero exposure before this week certainly didn‘t help him.  Read more »
Perhaps the most unlikely witness to Saturday morning‘s huge earthquake in Chile: former American Idol finalist Elliott Yamin.He was, after all, in the city of Vina del Mar, performing for a music festival when the magnitude-8.8 earthquake struck. He‘s pretty far from the epicenter: Concepcion, the second biggest city, was closest to it, and Vina del Mar is quite a far trip from the country‘s capital, Santiago. Still, the tremors freaked him out, to put things loosely.  Read more »
One week down, many more weeks to go. Now, before I head out to watch Carrie Underwood on How I Met Your Mother, how about another look at the rest of the American Idol universe? On today‘s roundup: more on Simon Cowell‘s supposed engagement, Michael Johns‘ odd collaboration, and more Idol graduates appearing on television.  Read more »
If anyone needed advice, it‘s this crop of American Idol semi-finalists. Luckily, they now have me, their Dear Abbey. This season, every Monday and Friday, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from the semi-finalists of American Idol about the pressing issues of the week. For my inaugural column, I took questions from Andrew Garcia, Jermaine Sellers, Tim Urban and Haeley Vaughn.   Read more »
We barely started the new American Idol week and already it‘s an unusual one. Yes, I can still remember it like yesterday--well, duh, it did happen yesterday. Late in the afternoon, prepping for the Top 10 girls‘ performances, when Fox decided to switch the scheduled performances: we got the guys yesterday, and we get the girls today.At first, I thought, "they‘re giving these guys a good position!" And then, "it must suck for the guys, because they haven‘t rehearsed much!" And then we all realize that it‘s because Crystal Bowersox was sent to hospital because of "medical issues"--allegedly complications from her diabetes, but there‘s no official word.  Read more »
Let the games begin American Idol fans! While the big competition is taking place on the American Idol stage, we‘re having a competition of our own here at BuddyTV. And remember, it‘s never too late to join. Show your Idol dominance in Fantasy TV, where you predict who‘ll be sent home and who‘ll be sticking around to sing another song. And this year, you‘ll have more than basic bragging rights for your Idol expertise: in addition to great prizes, you‘ll get to play a true Idol expert, Anoop Desai, at his own game. Read all about the prizes below, and check back each week to find out who former Idol, Anoop, thinks is going home before making your picks.  Read more »
Yesterday a medical emergency kept Crystal Bowersox and the rest of the Top 10 girls from performing. Today, with the girls‘ scheduled to perform in less than six hours, the question still looms: will Crystal Bowersox be well enough to perform? And an even bigger question, if she can‘t perform tonight? What fate will Crystal face?This morning American Idol producer Ken Warwick went on Ryan Seacrest‘s show to answer (and avoid) questions about Crystal‘s illness and her future in the competition. It would seem as of this moment, it is still all very much up in the air. Doctors were evaluating Crystal this morning and we will learn their final decision tonight on Idol. If the doctor‘s forbid her to perform, Warwick made it seem as if she would be disqualified, instead of allowing voters to call in for her as they were able to do on So You Think You Can Dance for Noelle Marsh and Ashleigh DiLello. Read more »
It‘s opposite week on American Idol.  First the guys and girls switched performance nights due to a Crystal Bowersox medical emergency.  Now, instead of Abbey Simmons, you get me, John Kubicek.  I‘m taking over for Abbey for one night only, so buckle up, because regardless of any medical issues:THIS...is American Idol!  Read more »
Part of our American Idol Fantasy TV contest is beating our very own Idol expert, Anoop Desai. Though he needs no introduction, we introduced him to you last week and now get an insider‘s thoughts on who could be going home tonight and why. Last week was a big shocker to most. Anoop currently stands in 114th place and tied with many of you with 750 points. Will he pull ahead this week?Anoop Desai‘s three picks to go home are:  Read more »
Fingers crossed America, if you thought last week was a disaster, tonight has the makings of a repeat performance. We all know that Tuesday is Ladies‘ Night on Idol, but tonight, with little warning it‘s the fellas‘ of season 9 who will be taking the stage. Word broke this afternoon that an unidentified medical issue would prevent Crystal Bowersox from performing, so the guys proved that chivalry is not in fact dead, by sacrificing a day of practice to perform.We‘re glad to know the season 9 fellas‘ would be the type of guys who opened the door for you, but we‘re not nearly as excited about how they‘ll do with one less day of practice. Watch along with me tonight as this "freaky Friday" edition of American Idol unfolds and the remaining top 10 guys are tested. Do they have what it takes to survive in the ever-changing life of a live performer? Tonight will be a true test.  Read more »
We‘re back for week 2 of our American Idol podcast whereBuddyTV‘s Idol experts Abbey Simmons and John Kubicek do battle overthe best singers and predict who‘s going home.  Last week got off to arocky start with both experts missing all of the eliminatedcontestants, but this week should be better.  Read more »
Dear American Idol,   I want to love you. I really do. You‘re faithful, consistent and able to perform (up to three times a week!). And I know we haven‘t been together that long--what‘s it been, a couple dates?--but if you don‘t get it right this time, I will have to admit to myself, things just ain‘t gonna work out. Ever. If this date is anything like last week‘s disaster of a Thursday night date, I might just have to cut my losses, hang my head in disappointment and walk away.   Do I need to remind you what happened last week? Let me remind you: people who could sing were eliminated instead of people with fabulous bangs, teen verve and even a few who must have sold their souls to the devil for votes. And the thing is: I could deal with your cheesy jokes and conversation that dragged on a little too long, I could swallow the Kara cougar comments and Simon‘s too deep V-neck -- but, I swear, one more elimination episode like that and it‘s over.   I don‘t want to hate you American Idol. I want this to be a long, happy relationship that leads to beautiful things and number one hits. So please, I‘m begging you, don‘t make me hate you tonight.   Yours, For Now, Abbey Read more »
American Idol fans love calling the final performance of the night the"Pimp Spot" because the person who sings last gets the biggest boostfor votes since they are freshest in viewers‘ minds.  But this seasonit seems like performance order is more important than ever, and thePimp Spot isn‘t just one performance.After four two-hour performance shows, anyone who performs in any ofthe last four spots has been safe.  Meanwhile, the vast majority of theeight eliminated singers so far performed early in the episode, andthree of them went second.  Going early is definitely a bad thing on American Idol, and with its awful track record, going second should be called the un-Pimp Spot.  Read more »
American Idol and indie music hardly go hand-in-hand.  In fact, before season 9, I might have said that the two were mortal enemies.  Or, at the very least, polar opposites. American Idol existed to create larger than life pop-stars overnight, who would appeal to the largest common denominator, sell out arenas and sing industry penned number one tunes.Independent music sought to counter the so-called Idol effect, where success was measured in the number of nights and years you spent touring, signing to a small record label and hoping Pitchfork wouldn‘t eviscerate you (You think Simon Cowell is harsh?), all with the big goal of being able to quit your day job pulling coffee to make music full-time.  Even the most successful independent artists in the world, the Sufjan Stevens‘ and Grizzly Bear‘s, could never dream of having an audience half as large as the average number of people who tune in to Idol every week.   Read more »
Yes, another American Idol roundup--because who would‘ve thought Simon Cowell would give us advice in love? Also on this little list: Danny Gokey‘s homecoming, Nick Mitchell‘s next gig, and what Kelly Clarkson did in Germany.  Read more »
The biggest buzzword from last week‘s American Idol: frustration.I mean, how many contestants got the "we‘re frustrated and disappointed at you" remark from the judges? Jermaine Sellers got that. Andrew Garcia got that. Haeley Vaughn got that. Lacey Brown got that.  Read more »
While sometimes I wish we could only focus on the upcoming Top 12 reveal on American Idol, there is a much bigger world out there. Err, I meant past seasons, and the judges, too... thus, this roundup, featuring more on Simon Cowell‘s engagement, Katharine McPhee‘s NBC pilot, and someone not having a reaction towards Carly Smithson‘s next project. But first, three shoo-ins for the Top 12...  Read more »
I sincerely hope by the end of tonight‘s American Idol I feel inspired to singKool & The Gang‘s classic song "Ladies‘ Night," rather than reaching for the Tylenol. With four eliminations down, we‘ve almost gotten rid of the contestants who can‘t sing, and certainly acouple who could. So, I‘m hopeful that the only tone deaf singing thatwill happen tonight will be me at 6pm cawing, "Oh yes it‘s ladiesnight. And the feeling‘s right. Oh yes it‘s ladies night. Oh what a night." Lucky for you, and the restof America, that will be a private performance that only my cats willbe tortured with.  Read more »
If anyone needed advice, it‘s this crop of American Idol semi-finalists. Luckily, they now have me, their Dear Abbey.This season, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from the semi-finalists of American Idol about the pressing issues of the week. In my debut column, I answered questions from now eliminated contestants Haeley Vaughn and Jermaine Sellers, clearly they paid the ultimate price for not following my expert advice. This week, I‘m answering questions from Didi Benami, Tim Urban, Katelyn Epperly, Casey James and Todrick Hall. Hopefully two weeks of Simon Cowell has prepared them for Dear Abbey.  Read more »
Help us Top 8 Guys, you‘re our only hope. Well, you and a handful of the remaining ladies, but seriously, it is time to step up your game and show us that season 9 isn‘t an over-hyped and under-performing waste of time.Last night the ladies seemed to have a nasty flashback to some ‘70s lava lamp lit lounge, frequented only by insomniacs looking for help sleeping. Tonight guys, we are literally begging you to sing us something that doesn‘t sound like it‘s karaoke or 30 years old or meant to be a natural substitute to Ambien. Please oh please fellas, don‘t fail us.  Read more »
It‘s another week of deadly American Idol competition betweenmyself and Abbey Simmons, and this time, it‘s even deadlier.  While webasically agree on the girls this week, there‘s a vicious battlebrewing over the guys and whether singers like Andrew Garcia areterrible or genius.Top 8 Guys Performances>>Top 8 Girls Performances>>Listen to the full podcast for the following debates:  Read more »
Last week, America got it right: they eliminated contestants who had under-whelmed, butchered notes and were never ever going to win American Idol. But this week is trickier. Much, much trickier. Not only is tonight the final elimination episode and the last cut before the hallowed Top 12, there are also a lot more middling mediocre performances to chose from.  Most of the performances this week weren‘t terrible, but most of them weren‘t anything special. And it‘s these kind of elimination nights, where it is so much more than the singing that comes into play, that makes me worried about who‘ll be singing their swan song tonight and who, with their perfect bangs and six pack abs, will be staying.  There‘s one way to find out who stays and who goes America, watch along live with me. I‘ll be looking for an even sadder rendition of "Smile" from Paige Miles and, of course, Tim Urban‘s elimination. Though I‘m feeling like only one of those things might actually happen tonight. What are you looking for tonight on American Idol? Read more »
With all the frustration most of us have over this season of American Idol, it seems we need something comfortably reliable to lean on to. You know, like the original loopy judge Paula Abdul.Well, we won‘t miss her much now, it seems. Entertainment Weekly reports that the former Idol judge is in talks to front an updated version of the seminal talent show Star Search for ABC.  Read more »
This morning Lilly Scott sat down and chatted with Ellen DeGeneres and performed "Lullaby of Birdland." It seems that Lilly‘s anger towards her American Idol elimination has been replaced with gratitude and optimism for the future. Ellen in turn showered Lilly with compliments, saying she was still in shock that Lilly was eliminated last week and commending her for staying true to herself. Lilly returned the favor, saying her Idol highlights largely involved Ellen‘s positive feedback. "It‘s so incredible, I can‘t believe that you even know who I am." While I appreciated Lilly‘s blunt honesty in her post-Idol interviews, the Lilly Scott that sat on stage with Ellen DeGeneres this morning was the Lilly Scott I was rooting for on Idol.  Read more »
If anyone needs advice, it‘s this crop of American Idol semi-finalists. Luckily, they now have me, their Dear Abbey. All season long, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from American Idol contestants with real advice. Last week, Katelyn didn‘t take my advice to sex it up ala Casey James and went with a regrettable romper instead, which let‘s be honest, is always ill-advised. I‘m not saying that  ignoring my advice cost her a spot in the Top 12, bu t... Didi Benami did take Dear Abbey‘s advice and she‘s in the Top 12. If that‘s not proof, well, I don‘t know what is. I kid, I kid. Kind of. So Lee, Siobhan and Crystal, take my advice, or you could be the fan favorite getting cut tomorrow night. Read more »
"Mixed Emotions" isn‘t just the name of a Rolling Stones‘ song that I hope someone will be performing tonight. It also perfectly describes how I feel going in to tonight‘s Top 12 performance show. On the one hand, the Top 12 is covering one of my very favorite  bands. On the other, it‘s the wrong Top 12 covering them.  That‘s right, I‘m still bitter about last Thursday‘s massacre of all things interesting on Idol. Tonight, when Paige Miles and Tim Urban take the stage, it‘ll be impossible not to long for what might have been had Lilly Scott and Alex Lambert stuck around to sing the Stones. Tonight we‘ll "all need somebody we can lean on, so if you want, you can lean on me. " So lean on me and follow along with my live thoughts, as we see who rocks the Rolling Stones and who gets rocked by the theme. Who do you think will excel this week and who do you think will struggle? And do you think the Top 12 will FINALLY take my advice with song choices and everything else? Read more »
Part of our American Idol Fantasy TV contest is beating our very own Idol expert, Anoop Desai. Need a little extra help making your picks for who will be the first of the top 12 to go home? Get an insider‘s thoughts on who could be going home tonight and why.  It‘s never too late to join the American Idol contest. Find out what you could win. Read more »
Nausea is a completely reasonable response to American Idol results night, right? Because after last Thursday‘s shocking massacre, I have to admit I feel a wee bit queasy going in to tonight‘s eliminations. To ease the possible heart break of losing another favorite this week, I‘m trying to take the Rolling Stones‘ advice and go in to the evening with "No Expectations." No expectations that the best singer won‘t be eliminated, no expectations that I won‘t hate Ke$ha even more after her performance and no expectations that the power of the Worsters will have worn off. Follow along with my live thoughts tonight as we see if who will be eliminated and who will live to sing another week. We have some thoughts on who‘ll be sent packing, as does our Idol expert Anoop Desai.  Read more »
Idol elimination was just a small part of the story this week. Here‘s the real news.First up: Taylor Hicks wants to date Kate GosselinNot only is Taylor Hicks arguably the most embarrassing winner in Idol history, he also clearly has terrible taste in women. Via PopEaterwe learn that of all the women in the world to tell a gossip columnistyou want to date, Mr. Soul Patrol says he wants to go on Daddy duty forKate Gosselin. *Shudder*  Read more »
Just early this week we were already floating the possibility of seeing Paula Abdul on our televisions again... well, it‘s not happening. At least not yet.ABC‘s plans to have the former American Idol judge join their revival of Star Search have reached a dead end after not meeting halfway when it comes to pay. Apparently the network wants to pay Abdul a significantly lower salary for the reboot--there are no actual figures, but it is suggested that the figures are much lower than the $5 million she demanded Fox pay her during stalled Idol negotiations last year.  Read more »
Since his first audition in Chicago, we‘ve loved Lee Dewyze and wondered why he wasn‘t given more screen time. The questions continued once the Top 24 were chosen, and yet American Idol has acted like the most interesting thing about Lee is the fact that he was a paint salesman. We‘ve joked about Lee‘s quiet personality and wondered aloud if he doesn‘t have some sort of tragic story for American Idol to exploit for votes and sympathy. And it turns out, he does and Idol, in a rare moment of restraint, has chosen not to exploit it.   Read more »
If anyone needs advice, it‘s this crop of American Idol semi-finalists. Luckily, they now have me, their Dear Abbey. All season long, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from American Idol contestants with real advice.This week, it‘s not just the contestants who are asking for my advice, it‘s the judges too. Read on as I dole out advice and wit to Big Mike, Ellen Degeneres, Simon Cowell and more.  Read more »
Paula Abdul ditched ABC‘s planned revival of Star Search, it seems, for this.Entertainment Weekly reports that the former American Idol judge is talking with NBC to front a new reality series that revolves around the world of flash mob dancing. Read more »
The dictionary.com definition of the word mentor [ment-tawr]: (Noun) "A wise and trusted counselor or teacher. An influential senior sponsor or supporter." The American Idol definition of  mentor: Miley Cyrus. A 17-year-old made for Disney star of questionable vocal ability and zero song writing skills, who is best known to people over the age of 12 for taking racy and racist photos, quitting Twitter and signaling the demise of American culture.   Read more »
This recap comes with a warning: if you love Miley Cyrus, you will hate me by the end of this. Heck, you‘ll probably hate me by the end of this introduction. You see, as a 29-year-old woman with functioning ears and no offspring, Miley Cyrus makes about as much sense to me as an Idol mentor and successful musician as Jesse James cheating on Sandra Bullock with a stripper whose face is covered in tattoos. It just does not compute and it never will. Thing is, it‘s not just Miley that I‘m less than ecstatic about tonight. It‘s the whole affair. From the deja vu inducing theme, to much of the Top 11 themselves, to the tired judging panel. Tonight‘s performance show has me wishing that The Last Song wasn‘t just the name of Miley‘s new movie, but a promise. A promise from each performer tonight that this would either be their last lackluster song, or their last song altogether. Read more »
Dear Siobhan,I don‘t know if you‘re able to read this. I don‘t know if you‘re allowed to read reviews from all of us in the Idol-sphere. But I surely hope you get the message I‘m trying to say.That message? Please stop screeching.  Read more »
BuddyTV‘s American Idol podcast is back, and it‘s in a week where it‘s painfully obvious who shoukd go home.  Abbey Simmons and I agree 100 percent that Paige Miles delivered one of the absolute worst performances in Idol history, even worse than her painful rendition of "Smile," and her time is now.We also agree that Crystal Bowersox is far and away the best.  The only arguments right now come from everyone else.  Who‘s the second best and who‘s the second worst?  Listen to us battle it out for the full story.  Read more »
Part of our American Idol Fantasy TV contest is beating our very own Idol expert, Anoop Desai. Taking a quick break from his press tour for his new single, "My Name", Anoop is here to help you make your picks for who may fall short of the Idol Tour this summer. Get an insider‘s thoughts on who could be going home tonight and why.  It‘s never too late to join the American Idol contest. Find out what you could win. Read more »
Have your ears and expectations recovered from last night‘s brutal beating my fellow Idol watchers? I personally am taking heart in the fact that there is no way tonight‘s results show can match the terribleness of last night‘s performance show, which is destined to be remembered as one of the worst episodes in American Idol history.  That‘s because unless the judges decide to do a reverse save ... where they eliminate two contestants tonight to punish their sheer awfulness ... only one member of the Top 11 will be singing solo. And that person will be Paige Miles.  Never have you all been so unanimous in your Fantasy TV votes or poll responses, so unless there‘s the biggest upset in a season of huge upsets, Paige will be sent packing and I can‘t say I‘ll miss her. Of course, I wouldn‘t miss Andrew Garcia or Tim Urban if they got the boot this week either, but we have next week and the week after that for those inevitable goodbyes. So watch along with me tonight as we learn who‘s eliminated (hint: Paige Miles) or read along with me so you don‘t have to sit through her swan song and guest performers Miley Cyrus, Joe Jonas and Demi Lovato. Now let‘s get on to eliminating Paige Miles!  Read more »
It may be almost a year since Paula Abdul left American Idol, but we‘re still talking about her--and that, I think, says a lot.  Read more »
Yes, we are still talking about Paula Abdul. Just decide on where you‘ll go, will you?  Read more »
If anyone needs advice, it‘s this crop of American Idol finalists. Luckily, they have me, their Dear Abbey. All season long, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from American Idol contestants with real snarky advice.This week I‘ll be offering advice on matters of the heart, garnering sympathy votes and even sharing a couple of  beauty tips.  Read more »
Are you beating our American Idol expert Anoop Desai in FantasyTV? Anoop is here to help you make your picks of who could be next to pack their bags. Get an insider‘s thoughts on who could be going home tonight and why.  It‘s never too late to join the American Idol contest. Find out what you could win.  Read more »
Faithful American Idol watchers, I have a confession to make. I‘ve got a case of the blues ... bad. You see, there‘s this show I love, but it don‘t treat me no good no more. Things used to be different. It used to be all Filet Mignon dinners and surprise gifts, and now its microwave meals on the couch. Nowadays instead of anticipating them like Christmas morning, I spend my Tuesdays and Wednesdays worrying that the magic is gone for good and it‘s got me down. At least the soundtrack will be fitting tonight, because nothing goes better with a case of the blues than the Blues themselves. As we all know, tonight the Top 10 are singing R&B and soul songs ... hopefully complete with rhythm, blues and soul. Because a night of R&B with no rhythm or soul would be about as sad as a night dedicated to The Rolling Stones with no rock ... and we all remember how well that went. Despite my downtrodden mood, I have hope that tonight‘s the night "A Change is Gonna Come" and American Idol returns to the show I loved. So watch along with me tonight (both here and on Twitter), as we discover if the Top 10 is a cure for the blues or the cause of them. Read more »
The Top 10 on American Idol did something we haven‘t seen before this season: they didn‘t suck.  The first non-terrible show of the year came thanks to more brilliance from Crystal Bowersox, but also some season-best performances by Lee Dewyze, Andrew Garcia and Casey James.As always, Abbey and I debated the Top 10 and, for the first time since the Top 12, we disagree on who‘s going home.  Listen to the full podcast for the fun action.  Read more »
I wasn‘t the only person tweeting during last night‘s Top 10 Performance, so were a number on notable American Idol alumni including Kelly Clarkson, Chris Daughtry and Jordin Sparks. Here‘s the best of what your favorite former Idol‘s had to say about this years Top 10, in 140 characters or less, but of course.  Read more »
What a difference a single show can make! Before last night I was wishing the season would just hurry up and finish. Tonight, I‘m wishing we could fast forward to next Tuesday. That way, we could see if last night‘s enjoyable performance episode was a fluke, or if season 9 is just getting started. Call me an Idol-optimist, but I think it‘s the latter. Of course, before we get to next Tuesday we have to eliminate (or save) someone tonight. We have some ideas of who‘ll be heading home tonight, but it‘s not nearly as clear as last week, when Paige Miles‘ bags had been pre-packed by the producers. Watch along with me as we learn who will really be singing the Blues after tonight‘s elimination.  Read more »
Sadly, we did not wake up this morning to discover that Tim Urban‘s entire time on American Idol was an elaborate April Fools‘ joke.  But that doesn‘t mean there isn‘t plenty of Idol news on this day of pranks and trickery. Let‘s have an American Idol news roundup shall we? Read more »
Seventh season runner David Archuleta is returning to American Idol on Wednesday night‘s results show, as one of the guest performers.Since we‘ll be tackling (again) the Lennon/McCartney songbook next week, there‘s no perfect person to tackle that than Archuleta, who performed two Beatles songs during his run on the show: "We Can Work It Out" on Top 12 week and "The Long and Winding Road" on Top 11 week. This Wednesday, he‘ll be performing John Lennon‘s classic "Imagine"--a song he also performed during the season 7 semifinals.  Read more »
If anyone needs advice, it‘s this crop of American Idol finalists. Luckily, they have me, their Dear Abbey. All season long, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from American Idol contestants with real snarky advice.This week I‘ll be offering advice to Katie Stevens, Aaron Kelly, Ryan Seacrest and possibly encouraging assault and battery.  Read more »
You might think the Lennon/McCartney songbook is untouchable, but American Idol has done it before. Many times, in fact. Remember, in the first week of the semifinals this year we had three Beatles songs in a row from the since-eliminated (and for the most part, still much missed) Katelyn Epperly, Haeley Vaughn and Lilly Scott.Thus, my hopes for this week‘s performances are needlessly elevated. Last week‘s performances have seen several contestants finally step up to the plate: Casey James and Lee Dewyze turned in pretty strong performances, Andrew Garcia got close to reclaiming the spark of "that song", and Crystal Bowersox was still being, well, Crystal Bowersox. Sure, most of this year‘s contestants are still dead weight, but I have enough reason to believe that we‘re going to see an upward trajectory of some sorts this week. Somehow.  Read more »
Get ready for a serious glam and drama injection on next week‘s American Idol, because Adam Lambert is back! That‘s right, the originator of the Idol screech and one of the most talked about performers in American Idol history will return to the stage that made him next week as he serves as a mentor for the Top 8 Idol contestants.  After rumors began to swirl this morning, 19 Entertainment confirmed to EW‘s Michael Slezak  that the glam one will serve as an Idol mentor and performer next week.  While we don‘t yet know the theme on which Adam will mentor the Top 8, it doesn‘t really matter, because Lambert had a way of taking  nearly every theme thrown at him and making it distinctly his own.  Read more »
Earlier this afternoon we told you that season 8 runner-up Adam Lambert would be serving as a mentor on next week‘s American Idol. We now have confirmation from Adam himself, in 140 characters or less, about returning to Idol. The oft-controversial Lambert took to Twitter to share his excitement of being asked back to Idol and to reassure nervous parents that his Idol performance would be far more family friendly than his American Music Awards performance. Here‘s what The Glam One had to say: Read more »
My name is Abbey Simmons and I am a life-long Beatles addict. Truth be told, I was born that way. My parents, you see, named me after a Beatles‘ album and I mumbled along to Beatles‘ songs long before I uttered my first words. The older I got, the deeper my addiction to the Fab Four grew. I‘ve purchased the band‘s catalog on cassette, CD, re-mastered CD and mono vinyl. I‘ve read the biographies, I own the movies, the post-Beatles albums, the Rock Band and I know every word to every song.  That‘s why I‘m looking forward to tonight‘s episode of American Idol with the same sort of trepidation that most people would feel if a freshman poetry class was rewriting their cherished religious text. Or the way a film buff would feel about a Michael Bay remake of Gone with the Wind. Some things are so sacred they simply should not be messed with--and the songs of John Lennon and Paul McCartney are definitely near the very top of that list.  Read more »
What is it with John Lennon and Paul McCartney and their songs? Suddenly the American Idol Top 9 look like they really deserve to be here. I guess I didn‘t expect it to happen, especially after six weeks of hit-or-miss performances, but if Tim Urban can do good by The Beatles, so can everybody else.In fairness, last night wasn‘t disappointing. There weren‘t any massive blunders. In fact, I thought this week‘s worst performance was passable. But I won‘t be talking about that. This week we‘re changing things a bit, because there was something interesting going on: the attack of bizarre wind instruments. Read more »
This week American Idol took on the Lennon/McCartney songbook, and it was a great night with David Cook and Brooke White and ... oh, wait, we‘re talking about the season 9 Lennon/McCartney week.  In that case, the only real breakout stars were a didgeridoo, a bagpiper, and Mama Sox talking about Danny Gokey babies.  As for singing, Abbey Simmons really loved Casey James, while I ruled the evening a nine-way tie for mediocrity.Check Out Abbey‘s Recap of the Top 9 Performances>>But who will be going home?  Both Abbey and I think a guy will finally be leaving, but we still disagree on who it will be.  Listen to our awesome podcast for the full story, or continue below for the highlights.  Read more »
Just when you thought the Ford music videos on American Idol couldn‘t get any weirder, well, it did.After having Andrew Garcia left behind in a fountain, and Crystal Bowersox wearing a stupid-slash-funny kung fu outfit, last night‘s music video went the psychedelic direction, a nod to the Beatles‘ similar direction later in their careers.  Read more »
For someone who thoroughly enjoyed Shania Twain‘s stint as a guest judge during American Idol‘s auditions in Chicago, this is very good news.TV Guide Magazine reports that the country star is returning to the reality show this year, as a mentor to the finalists. Read more »
Without the likes of an Adam Lambert, season 9 of American Idol has been lacking its usual water cooler clout. At least until last night, when America threw a curve ball and placed three band new faces in the bottom three, and the judges‘ used their lone save on the mad gesticulator: Michael Lynche.  You all took to your  virtual water coolers, Twitter and BuddyTV, to share your thoughts on Big Mike‘s big break. And it seems that most of you believe the judges‘ made a big mistake. Here‘s what you had to say.  Read more »
Usually when Ryan Seacrest promises surprises and shocks, he‘s straight-up lying. Last night, when Seacrest said we were sure to be shocked by the night‘s outcome, he wasn‘t even exaggerating.From an all new Bottom Three to the early use of the judges‘ save, the only predictable aspects of last night‘s results show were uneven guest performances and some unnecessary leg pulling from Seacrest.Read all about last night‘s results show here. Read more »
The Top 9 is, as The Beatles sang, "getting better all the time."  With the help of the songs of John Lennon and (mostly) Paul McCartney, the Top 9 turned in the best performance show of the season last night. Unfortunately for one American Idol contestant, it will be too little too late and they‘ll be given their "Ticket to Ride" tonight. Unless of course, the judges use the save and hopefully follow my lead with the Beatles puns and say something like "America said Goodbye, but we say Hello." (C‘mon Ellen is TOTALLY using that line if they judges use their save tonight.)  Yes folks, me and the Beatles puns will be here all night, as wewelcome the return of the Idol prodigal son, Rihanna and Kara‘s "bigartist," who I have never heard of. So watch along with me won‘t you? We‘ll learn together who‘ll survive to be mentored by Adam Lambert next week and who‘ll Watch along with me tonight as we learn who‘ll survive to be mentored by Adam Lambert next week and who‘ll cry instead.  Read more »
Since word arrived that Adam Lambert would be mentoring the Top 8 (now Top 9) Idol contestants, we‘ve wondered just what theme the Glam One would be guiding this year‘s crop of Idols through. We had all kinds of great ideas that would be perfect for Adam‘s mentorship: Glam Week, ‘70s rock, hit songs by former Idol contestants ... but that‘s not what the Idol powers that be have in mind. While FOX has not confirmed it yet, it appears that Adam Lambert will be helping the Top 9 with the tunes of The King: Elvis Presley. Before you start groaning about another rehashed Idol theme, this week‘s take on Elvis could be slightly different than when Season 5 performed it. You see, word on the web is that Adam will be mentoring the contestants in Las Vegas and Idol blog Top Idol has confirmed  that the Top 9 will take in Cirque du Soleil‘s newest show Viva Elvis. I‘ll give you a moment to wrap your head around the train wreck potential of that.  Read more »
This weekend on American Idol, we‘ve got details on who else is joining Idol Gives Back, as well as the judges‘ future appearance on The Simpsons. But first, bits about Tuesday night‘s theme. Read more »
I thought we‘d all get a lie in before American Idol returns tonight, but alas, we aren‘t meant to be. Two weeks ago we were planning everything out. Two days ago we saw a storm coming. Yesterday, it rained really hard, and as we started writing about Simon Cowell leaving the show after this year‘s winner has been announced, I thought, "there‘s definitely something with this season."Still, here we are--the ninth season of American Idol, which means another bunch of people who think they can sing, alongside the real talent, and maybe the next person who I‘ll root for until the very end. But, as we all know, it‘s going to be a bit different. Ellen DeGeneres has come in to replace Paula Abdul, but the replacement came in late, so we all get guest judges over the national auditions in the next few weeks. Here‘s the battle plan: we‘ll talk a bit about the guest in question now, and maybe later in the day we‘ll assess how that guest fared. And, with Simon‘s departure confirmed, we‘ll see whether that person in question is worthy of replacing that caustic Brit.  Read more »
So we‘re going to Atlanta tonight. I have an aunt there. I haven‘t seen her in, I don‘t know, ten years or so. But I digress. I should change my introduction a bit.So we‘re going to Atlanta tonight. Again. The city‘s a favorite destination for American Idol auditions. I think they‘ve been here for seven seasons or so. No surprise some of the show‘s most successful alumni have auditioned in this city. Clay Aiken began his campaign here. Fantasia Barrino began her campaign here. The biggest success story, perhaps, is Jennifer Hudson--she auditioned for Idol here, and look where it brought her. Read more »
Two hours of American Idol later, it felt a bit underwhelming. Was it the huge Paula-sized hole that thin Posh Spice can‘t fill? Or was it something else? It wasn‘t all bad, Boston gave us a handful of good contenders, and already I‘m rooting for at least one of them. Here, then, is my first ever American Idol honor roll: where we highlight the auditioners that stood out last night. Be it in a good way or a bad way.  Read more »
After every episode, we assess how American idol‘s guest judges have fared. Towards the end, we‘ll see if they did Paula Abdul‘s old slot justice. Or the show justice. Or Simon Cowell‘s soon-to-be-vacated slot justice. You get the idea.Name: Victoria BeckhamBest known as: Former Spice Girl and current Mrs. David BeckhamAudition city: Boston  Read more »
American Idol got off to a big start with over 30 million viewers last night, and in the second audition episode, we‘re off to the dirty south in a little place called Hotlanta.  Your regular recapper, Abbey Simmons, is out today celebrating her 29th birthday, probably sobbing over the fact that she‘s no longer eligible to be the next American Idol.Last night we got siblings with Down Syndrome, a grandma with Alzheimer‘s, shattered wrists and a guy with cancer, so as you can imagine, it was a barrelful of laughs.  Maybe Atlanta and guest judge Mary J. Blige will liven things up.  Surely she‘s going to be more useful than David Beckham‘s wife. Read more »
I would‘ve said that last night‘s American Idol was a disappointment. I almost did, actually. I think I was reminded of the reason why I didn‘t watch audition episodes--and also consider that this episode was supposed to be 75 minutes long only, if not for Our Little Genius being pulled out. But that‘d be pretty cruel. Atlanta has given us a handful of standouts, and I‘m seeing two making it quite far. That kicks off today‘s American Idol honor roll, with the standout auditions from last night, for better or for worse.  Read more »
After every episode, we assess how American Idol‘s guest judges have fared. Towards the end, w‘‘ll see if they did Paula Abdul‘s old slot justice. Or the show justice. Or Simon Cowell‘s soon-to-be-vacated slot justice. You get the idea.Name: Mary J. BligeBest known as: Grammy-winning R&B artistAudition city: Atlanta  Read more »
I wasn‘t that surprised when I read that last night‘s auditions in Chicago only resulted in thirteen tickets to American Idol‘s Hollywood round. Think about it: how many good singers did you spot last night? That said, I‘m a bit dismayed that there were only thirteen golden tickets last night--a testament, perhaps, to the unpopularity of accordions and what Randy called "musical boobs".Fingers crossed, then, that we see more big talent in Orlando. It‘s only the second time Idol rolls around that city--it seems to prefer Miami more--although season 4 runner-up Bo Bice started his stint on the show after passing auditions there. And I think he‘s the only one from that batch of try-outs who made it quite far.  Read more »
Last week was American Idol‘s first week, and already we were treated to sob stories, annoyed contestants, and the ubiquitous "Pants on the Ground", with some good singing scattered in between. This week, I expect things to stay the same. Well, except for the viral hit. And there‘s the benefit of those spoilers we‘ve been getting our hands on over the weekend--it‘d be interesting seeing some of those names impress us on TV rather than on YouTube.Tonight, we head to Chicago, that windy city that Oprah calls home. The show hasn‘t been there too many times--they‘ve held auditions twice there, I think, including that little bit about Mandisa confronting Simon after his quips during audition. Random fact you probably know already: she was never in the bottom three until she was eliminated. That week, she sang a song from Shania Twain, who happens to be tonight‘s guest judge. Wasn‘t that a convenient transition?  Read more »
Is it just me, or did Chicago disappoint a bit? I always thought I‘d see more good talent last night, and I found myself having an easy time looking for my standouts. (Two of them are on the list of Top 24 contestants going around lately.) Or maybe it‘s because the episode was just an hour long, and after last week‘s four-hour Fenlon/Lamar/Pants rampage, this was a bit disengaging. Still, I have standouts, and that means we have another installment of the American Idol honor roll, featuring the highlights of last night‘s episode, for better or worse.  Read more »
After every episode, we assess how American Idol‘s guest judges have fared. Towards the end, we‘ll see if they did Paula Abdul‘s old slot justice. Or the show justice. Or Simon Cowell‘s soon-to-be-vacated slot justice. You get the idea.Name: Shania TwainBest known as: Canadian country hitmaker who says we‘re still the oneAudition city: Chicago  Read more »
This is an odd proposition. There were more golden tickets on the first day of Orlando auditions than both days of the Chicago auditions. That‘s a check for my "fingers crossed there‘s more good talent" line yesterday morning. But, oddly, there weren‘t much that made me go "oh wow!"--and we‘ve had many of those moments before. Disappointing, yes. Still, there‘s enough to work with for my American Idol honor roll today, slightly tweaked for your convenience.  Read more »
After every episode, we assess how American Idol‘s guest judges have fared. Towards the end, we‘ll see if they did Paula Abdul‘s old slot justice. Or the show justice. Or Simon Cowell‘s soon-to-be-vacated slot justice. You get the idea.Name: Kristin ChenowethBest known as: Award-winning stage and television performerAudition city: Orlando  Read more »
Tonight‘s American Idol auditions will be in its backyard: Los Angeles. I guess that means you don‘t exactly give golden tickets, but more of golden bus passes. The judges don‘t say "you‘re going to Hollywood!" with such gusto. Maybe "you‘re going over there!" followed by a finger pointing towards where the Hollywood rounds will be aired. But that‘s just me nitpicking.Los Angeles, as we all know, is home to a lot of Idol‘s biggest names: Katharine McPhee, Allison Iraheta, Adam Lambert, and surely I‘m missing a few names. Still, I find it a bit odd nobody who auditioned in Los Angeles made it quite big. The three names I mentioned auditioned in San Francisco. Oh, does anybody remember if William Hung did it in LA? I think so, right? There goes your big name. Not that it‘s a big deal, really. I just wanted to point that out.  Read more »
California‘s had its share of Idol big names, but as I pointed out yesterday, none of them auditioned in Los Angeles. Maybe San Francisco, yes, but not Los Angeles. I have a good feeling this year is going to be the exception. I‘m calling out (and digging through) three singers from last night‘s auditions, proving that the backyard of the stars got soul--and that‘s where we kick off this edition of the American Idol honor roll. Read more »
After every episode, we assess how American Idol‘s guest judges have fared. Towards the end, we‘ll see if they did Paula Abdul‘s old slot justice. Or the show justice. Or Simon Cowell‘s soon-to-be-vacated slot justice. You get the idea.Name: Avril LavigneBest known as: Grammy-nominated pop-punker with a taste for complicated boysAudition city: Los Angeles  Read more »
Back in June, I was talking to a friend of mine who live in Dallas. She‘s the sort who uploads YouTube videos of herself singing. I told her American Idol will be holding auditions where she is, and encouraged her to join, since she‘s long wished to be part of the show. Unfortunately, she didn‘t join--she joined the Navy instead. I guess that means I won‘t be watching the show tonight, anticipating someone I know to pop up.Texas has been home to a lot of talent, and I‘m not just thinking of country icons and all those indie bands in Austin. Idol has held auditions here twice before, and its biggest discoveries are not like each other. Season 7‘s Jason Castro has gone the folky route. And, of course, we all know what happened to the show‘s very first winner, Kelly Clarkson. Of course, you can expect the show to drop Kelly‘s name and ask whether we‘ll see another one of her sort in Dallas this year. Don‘t act so surprised when that happens, please. Thank you.  Read more »
It‘s pretty hard to pass judgment on last night‘s auditions in Dallas. Sure, there were less train wrecks (but the sob stories still went SOB STORY!) and we‘ve had good talent, not to mention the useful Neil Patrick Harris, but I had a pretty hard time picking out a standout. Well, I did. One, in fact. And then there‘s another contestant whose name‘s on the spoilers, who apparently is quite controversial, which is why I ended up writing a longer segment on that guy. Lopsided? That‘s my American Idol honor roll today.  Read more »
After every episode, we assess how American Idol‘s guest judges have fared. Towards the end, we‘ll see if they did Paula Abdul‘s old slot justice. Or the show justice. Or Simon Cowell‘s soon-to-be-vacated slot justice. You get the idea.Name: Katy PerryBest known as: the pop star who kissed a girl and liked itAudition city: Los Angeles  Read more »
After every episode, we assess how American Idol‘s guest judges have fared. Towards the end, we‘ll see if they did Paula Abdul‘s old slot justice. Or the show justice. Or Simon Cowell‘s soon-to-be-vacated slot justice. You get the idea.And, in case you haven‘t noticed, we‘re merging two report cards today into one. We think you know why.  Read more »
Finally, one last week of American Idol auditions. It‘s been fun, but it‘s been a bit frustrating. If it‘s not the train wrecks (good morning, Crazy Accordion Lady) or the angry people (good morning, Andrew Fenlon), it‘s the sob stories (good morning, Chris Golightly). It does get to you after a while, especially when you‘re itching to see the actual competition get swinging. That, or I just want to see how Ellen DeGeneres does as a judge.Anyway, we have two more audition episodes left, the last one being a "Road to Hollywood" special, which looks like a best-of-the-rest package for those aspirants who the editors didn‘t get to squeeze in the other episodes. Tonight‘s show, on the other hand, brings us to Denver, the Mile High City, home of since-forgotten Idol contestant Ace Young, and the city where Chris Daughtry auditioned, later becoming the biggest thing in season 5. Read more »
I‘m struggling with you, Denver. You had train wrecks (hello, "world‘s greatest singer") and a dude who wore a bikini possibly to promote the radio station he works for. Okay, so you had good singers too--a 90‘s throwback, a squeaky lounge singer... oh, and the two people that made my American Idol honor roll today. The only problem is, there really isn‘t much to talk about, because even a hundred billion Google searches (see what I did there?) isn‘t giving me many yeses.  Read more »
I‘ll admit, I was initially skeptical of American Idol‘s decision to lump an assorted array of auditions into one episode. I was thinking, "can‘t we just discover them in Hollywood or something?" Right now, I‘m still a bit skeptical, but at least I can count the bad auditions with only one hand, and everything else went from passable to just great. In fact, this episode introduced me to two names that might be familiar to you, considering the Top 24 spoilers--and that‘s where we kick off this edition of the American Idol honor roll.  Read more »
After three weeks of audition episodes, eight celebrity guest judges and the ever-so-ubiquitous "Pants on the Ground", we finally made it: Hollywood! I‘m just happy the pure train wrecks are over, and American Idol has finally taken one more step towards actual competition mode. Wheeee. Now the real business begins.Well, not yet. As we all know, the judges will take the 181 people they gave golden tickets to, and whittle them down one by one before the Top 24 is revealed in two weeks‘ time. So that means a solo performance, a group performance, another solo performance, and tension, tension, tension backstage. At least it‘s a bit more palatable than those people who come to the auditions to grab their 15 minutes of fame.  Read more »
And just when I thought we‘ve seen most of the name the folks over at American Idol wanted us to focus on, they spring another one on us. The girl who works at a sandwich shop and auditioned in Denver barely got exposure before tonight, and yet she surprises with how good she is. Her voice reminds me a little bit of Zee Avi, a little bit of Madeleine Peyroux and a little bit of Zooey Deschanel.As it turns out, this girl, Lilly Scott, is on the Top 24 spoilers list.  Read more »
Dear American Idol,I don‘t usually watch audition episodes. You know that. You know that I don‘t like watching train wrecks, delusional fame seekers, and excessive sob stories. That‘s why I was so happy that we finally got to the Hollywood episodes. At least the people there are the better ones. If there‘s a train wreck, it‘s nerves. If there‘s drama flaring, it‘s because they‘re so close and yet so far away. That, I can tolerate.  Read more »
In a surprise move, American Idol will announce some of this season‘s Top 24 semifinalists in tomorrow night‘s two-hour episode, which will air from 8pm.Tomorrow‘s episode will also feature the final Hollywood round, where the remaining 71 singers perform in front of Simon, Randy, Kara and Ellen one last time. Immediately after the performances, the judges will deliberate and give a partial announcement on who makes it to the Top 24.  Read more »
It doesn‘t need repeating, but what the heck: this year‘s American Idol audition episodes have been different, and not really for the better.Shall I enumerate them again? There‘s either an extended sob story (and you know how much I hate them, even though I get why they are there) or an extended train wreck (which is not really welcome). The guest judges, while interesting, actually distracted from the talent being shown. There was a "best of the rest" episode two weeks ago, an unusual move designed to either pimp the rest of the eventual Top 24, or just show all the other sob stories they failed to squeeze into the past episodes. Later, Hollywood round had more contestants, in Ryan‘s words, going "against the odds"--err, going through breakdowns and dramatic moments and bitchy fits. Read more »
By now, every American Idol fan worth their salt knows that Chris Golightly (he of sad, sad orphan story) is out of the Top 24, and Tim Urban (he of adorable dimples and almost zero screen time) is in. The quick recap is that Chris was declared ineligible at the last minute due to an old contract with a record label and was unceremoniously booted and edited out of the Hollywood week hoopla. (Though we still spotted his blond ‘fro celebrating on stage with the Top 24.) That‘s why, despite whatever Ryan was telling us last night, we only saw 23 names announced until the cheesy dance-off at the end when Tim Urban popped up.   Still, questions remain around Chris‘ elimination and his apparent ineligibility for other seasons. (According to an interview he conducted with Joe‘s Place, he is ineligible for future season‘s of Idol because of how far he made it in the audition process, a fact I‘m sure will surprise repeat Top 50 contestant Lacey Brown.) The big question to me surrounds his replacement: Why Tim Urban? And more importantly, why not Thaddeus Johnson?  Read more »
Both Fox and Ryan Seacrest have confirmed Chris Golightly was disqualified from American Idol. "It has been determined that Chris Golightly is ineligible to continue in the competition," the statement said. AINow previously reported that Chris had a previous contract that he did not disclose to producers even if it has since lapsed.Chris has since talked to Joe‘s Place Blog, claiming that he was disqualified yesterday because he was unable to show proof that he was released from a previous contract he had with a performing group. Despite his efforts to show such proof at the last minute, producers wouldn‘t take his call. He also claims he is barred from trying out next year because he made it to this year‘s Top 46. Read more »
How long has it been since this season of American Idol began? Yeah, it‘s fun reacquainting myself with the auditions (and sometimes getting pissed off) but nothing beats actual singing rather than overplayed drama. Tonight, in a two-hour episode, the competition actually begins, as we start paring down the Top 24 until one of them emerges the winner. Yes, we get to vote again. Yes, we have to start treating these girls seriously now. They are the real deal.Wait a minute--twelve performances in two hours? Oh no. I smell forty-five minutes of filler coming.  Read more »
Last night on American Idol, the girls have shown their stuff, with a few hits and a few misses--overall, we‘re having a hard time figuring out who will certainly be eliminated. Remember, kids: four are going tomorrow night, so you‘ve got to out a little more thought to who you pick on our Fantasy TV contest, featuring Noopie.Anyway, the guys. There‘s one obvious thing tonight: Andrew Garcia will rock everyone‘s socks. That explains the title--I know it‘s too early to tell, but with his impressive performances during the auditions, plus the matter of him being the most-buzzed Idol contestant this season so far, what else could go wrong? If you‘re capable of turning that totally unlistenable song that is "Fireflies" around into something I‘ll actually try listening to, then you deserve all the praise.  Read more »
One of the many thoughts in my head after watching American Idol last night: wasn‘t that a bit of a throwback to Beatles week in the seventh season? They even put the Beatles performances--Lilly Scott‘s, Katelyn Epperly‘s and Haeley Vaughn‘s--together!Now, I‘m in the middle of rediscovering the Beatles, especially since their whole back catalogue was just reissued (and with better sound, I must add), so I was a little anxious how this would pan out. But I‘m glad to say the three performances gave justice to the songs they chose, albeit with varying degrees.  Read more »
You can tell something is wrong with last night‘s episode when the best performance I can find is Casey James‘ take on Bryan Adams‘ "Heaven".No, really.  Read more »
One week down, and loads more to go. We‘ve had a handful of good performances on American Idol this week, but for the most part we‘ve seen safe performances, nervous performances and the occasional train wreck. And with four contestants going home tonight--two guys and two girls--it‘s going to be extra hard to decide who will be given the boot. I‘m not really that good at math, so can anyone calculate a contestant‘s chances of survival?Kidding aside, though, we‘ve utilized our slightly scientific method of determining who‘s going home tonight, by compiling all your poll votes and Fantasy TV predictions (where you can win stuff especially if you beat Anoop Desai), as well as the thoughts of your resident American Idol experts.  Read more »
Welcome to another season of BuddyTV‘s weekly American Idolpodcast!  Every week our two Idol experts will do battle debating thebest, the worst, and making their bold predictions for who will beeliminated.  This year, TV critic and avid American Idol watcher John Kubicek takes on music blogger and Idol guru Abbey Simmons.This week, the two discuss the overall mediocrity of the Top 24performances in week one, the few bright spots and the offensivelyterrible.  Listen to what our Idol experts have to say and pick yourside: John or Abbey?  Read more »
It‘s not just American Idol and the Top 10 guys who are scrambling to prepare for tonight‘s performance show. When news broke this afternoon that the guys would be performing tonight and not the ladies, I was in the midst of prepping tomorrow‘s best and worst song choice slideshow for the fellas. So, just like American Idol, I‘m switching up my plans. For today only, I‘m doing an abridged "best song choices" post for the fellas. Next week, we‘ll return to our regularly scheduled programming, both on Idol and here on BuddyTV.Until then, what do you think of my choices for the Top 10 guys? And which songs would you like to hear them perform tonight?  Read more »
Update: US Weekly reports that Crystal Bowersox was rushed to the hospital due to complications from diabetes. "[She] is doing okay and should be fine for tomorrow," the source said. Fox wouldn‘t confirm specifics behind Crystal‘s "medical issues".Breaking news from American Idol-land. While the Top 10 girls were scheduled to perform tonight, it‘ll actually be the Top 10 guys who take the stage. According to a press release from FOX, Crystal Bowersox had an unidentified "medical issue" that will keep her from performing tonight. So tune in tonight to root for Aaron, Alex, Andrew, Big Mike, Casey, Jermaine, John, Lee, Tim and Todrick. Goodness knows the guys are going to need all the support and prayers they can get. They‘ll be performing tonight with one less day to rehearse, which considering what a disaster last week was, does not bode well. We‘ll keep you up-to-date with any new developments in this breaking story. Here‘s to hoping whatever is keeping Crystal and the rest of the ladies off stage tonight is nothing serious. And fear not strict Idol schedule followers, things will return to normal next week with the ladies‘ performing on Tuesday and the guys‘ performing Wednesday.  Read more »
And so continues my continued disappointment with the guys.Here‘s the thing. The guys had the odds stacked against them last night. They weren‘t supposed to perform until tonight, but thanks to Crystal Bowersox being rushed to the hospital, they had to perform a day early--with less time to rehearse and less time to size each other up.  Read more »
Thanks to that last-minute schedule swap, the guys performed last night... and the girls will perform tonight. In case you haven‘t seen what I wrote yesterday morning, here it is again, slightly tweaked.I can imagine your reactions after the American Idol episodes last week: "what the heck just happened?"Sure, it‘s their first live show, but unlike last year, when some of the frontrunners went to the stage and made us go "wow", this year‘s was a little more... should I say disastrous? There were some good performances but they weren‘t as memorable as past semifinalists. There were some really bad performances, running the gamut from overdoing a song to, well, overdoing a song. And there were the really unforgivable eliminations, giving more credence to the believe that this season is incredibly screwed up.  Read more »
Abbey and I faced the same problem on American Idol this week: predicting who will be eliminated. In my case, it‘s always one definite and another complete toss-up. I guess you can blame that on the persisting averageness of this year‘s Top 20. Sure, the performances were better, but apart from the obvious frontrunners, everything is up in the air.So, again, two girls and two guys get the boot tonight, leaving the competition to the accompaniment of tonight‘s musical guest, Danny Gokey. The identities of those four kids are hard to figure out exactly, but we sure have our thoughts. Now, the weekly presentation of the beliefs of a small cross-segment of Idol fans, also known as BuddyTV users like you who answer our polls and play along with our Fantasy TV thingie. An even smaller cross-section? Abbey and I, your Idol experts. I mean, there‘s two of us and definitely more of you!  Read more »
As expected, the girls did better than the guys on American Idol this week. But, in the words of Simon, it‘s just "by a smidge".However, the trend goes along like this: this week‘s performances are better than last week‘s performances. So that settles the nerves, then.  Read more »
Last night John Park and Jermaine Sellers were eliminated from American Idol. This afternoon, they both took the time to answer questions about their time on American Idol and what‘s next for them. While the two couldn‘t be more different as singers or interview subjects, John was reserved and thoughtful and Jermaine remained the loquacious preacher that we saw interacting with the judges, both attributed their eliminations to the same flaw: an inability to focus.  It turns out whether you‘re a lifelong church singer or the lead vocalist of your college glee group, when it comes to 30 million people watching you and the promise of Simon Cowell‘s wrath, there‘s no real preparation for Idol. Here are the highlights of Jermaine and John‘s interviews.   Read more »
Last night Haeley Vaughn and Michelle Delamor were eliminated from American Idol. This afternoon, they both took the time to answer questions about their time on American Idol, the "M" named artists that have inspired them most and what‘s next for them.Here are the highlights of Haeley and Michelle‘s interviews.  Read more »
Now, unless there‘s another last minute schedule swap, you can expect to hear the eight remaining girls perform for that spot on the Top 12 tonight. It‘s another week of American Idol, kids, and I do not know where to start.Scratch that. I think I do know where to start: with the fact that it‘s the final week of semifinals. By Thursday night, two more guys and two more girls leave us, and the competition takes one more step up the ladder. With the Top 12, stakes are upped further, and we‘ll see the singers challenged further with more thoughtful themes. Billboard hits, goodbye for another year.  Read more »
Well, there‘s no last-minute schedule swap, so everything is back to normal! Hooray, I guess.I guess, since we‘re dealing with the guys again. Yes, I said this before, but I‘ll say this again (and yes, I said that line before, but I‘ll say it again): the guys have been disappointing on American Idol this year. Over the past two weeks I never really looked forward to the performances of the guys. I know, some will do good, and some have done good, but they haven‘t really caught my attention. I think it speaks a lot when I say that last night‘s lady snoozefest would be much better than tonight.  Read more »
Here‘s a very random thought: how come the music in coffee shops are absolutely sleepy?Not that I don‘t like them. No, I must say I like some of them. They‘re the sort of stuff I grew up with as a kid, and I‘d like to think they form the backbone of my musical tastes. It‘s just a little ironic: coffee that‘s supposed to wake you up, sipped in a place that promotes chilling out.  Read more »
This is going to be very, very interesting.Entertainment Weekly reports that next week‘s American Idol will celebrate the music of the iconic British band, the Rolling Stones.  Read more »
Dun-dun-dun-dun-dunnnnnnn... the sinister music (if you imagined it that way) is necessary: tonight American Idol reveals the Top 12.This week‘s performances were, as the judges repeated over and over, critical. "The most important night in your career," as Simon told Katelyn. And yet, like last week, it‘s pretty hard to pinpoint the two guys and two girls who will be going home. The girls, who have fared better in the first two weeks, pulled off a sleepover on Tuesday. The guys, on the other hand, delivered some of their best performances yet. Right now, it‘s hard guessing who goes because it‘s been pretty uneven for the most part--well, expect for a couple of contestants.  Read more »
This is a no-brainer, isn‘t it?Definitely the best--okay, the standout--performance from last night‘s American Idol is Michael Lynche‘s take on Maxwell‘s (or, if you want to go further, Kate Bush‘s) "This Woman‘s Work." Read more »
Most of us, me included, would call it the lowest point of American Idol this season, if not of the past nine seasons.Sure, by the time the Top 16 wrapped up their performances, it was hard guessing who will go home. Some contestants showed potential but didn‘t live up to them during the live shows. Some contestants didn‘t initially impress but turned out to have something in there. And some contestants were just so good, we were absolutely certain we‘d see them next week.  Read more »
In the words of The Pretenders‘ Chrissy Hynde, "stop stop stop stop stop stop your sobbing."I think I‘ve gotten over the tripe that was last week‘s eliminations, also known as the day when somebody mindlessly threw a banana peel on the stage, and took three talented performers tumbling down. That‘s after a weekend of me and my sister exchanging screams of "devastating!" while watching Lilly Scott‘s performances. And, at least, I have two other bets, one of which is so painfully obvious I think I should jump out of the window.  Read more »
Should I apologize for being a bit cynical when I previewed last night‘s American Idol performance show? I mean, the Rolling Stones oeuvre as performed by what many of you called the worst Top 12 the show ever had--what good will come out of that?Well, it was better than I expected, with some contestants churning out their best performances yet--some doing so despite the odds (hello, Paige Miles). Others, well, didn‘t fare so well. But after last week‘s massive miss, it‘s much harder choosing who‘s going home tonight.  Read more »
When I first read that American Idol will tackle the Rolling Stones this week, I was scared. I mean, imagine the possibilities! Save two or three people, it‘s going to be a train wreck.Fortunately, it wasn‘t a train wreck. Well, not a big one. Our pick for this week‘s worst performance isn‘t exactly a bad performance, but more a bad judgment call. But our pick for this week‘s best performance isn‘t exactly pitch-perfect, literally. (I can‘t believe I just typed those words down, but hey, it happens.)  Read more »
If this really is the case, it‘s going to be a very weird week on American Idol next week.There‘s no official word, but the folks over at AINow tweeted that the Top 11 contestants will tackle what they call a "Teen Idols-themed week".  Read more »
It was just a couple weeks ago when we were wondering, "is American Idol actually going indie?"And for good reason, a considerable chunk of the Top 24 were more than just good singers. They also had a strong idea of who they are as an artist, something evident in the way they presented themselves from the auditions straight to Hollywood week and later, to the live shows. And while it seemed too good to be true, especially for folks like me whose musical taste isn‘t limited to familiar, if not generic, voices, it was a welcome change.  Read more »
And our first guest mentor of season 9 is ... Miley Cyrus. Word just arrived from FOX  that Miss "Party in the USA" herself will be this week‘s special guest mentor for the newly named "Billboard #1 Hits" theme performance show. And Miley won‘t just be a mentor this week; she‘ll also be performing the following night on the American Idol results show with fellow teen sensations Joe Jonas and Demi Lovato. Hopefully Joe‘s performance during the results show will be more interesting than his blink and you‘ll miss it guest judging stint during the Dallas auditions.  Read more »
The good news, more or less: it‘s not Teen Idols week on American Idol this week. Gone are our questions as to what this would actually entail--whether it‘s current teen idols (the likes of Justin Bieber) or past teen idols (Hanson? New Kids on the Block? The Beatles?)The bad news: it‘s Billboard #1 Hits week on American Idol this week. Not the most challenging theme, I know, considering we‘ve had three weeks of chart hits during the semifinals...  Read more »
Welcome to the weirdest week on American Idol ever.It was supposed to be Teen Idols Week this week. We all didn‘t know what that meant. I first thought it meant we‘d be hearing Justin Bieber songs on the Idol stage (Ryan Seacrest would‘ve loved that) but then when you throw past teen idols into the picture, it got really confusing. And then the producers changed this week‘s theme to Billboard #1 Hits, a throwback to... two weeks ago. And the two weeks before that.   Read more »
We all know that whoever gets eliminated at this point in American Idol doesn‘t just lose a shot at the big prize. The person that gets the boot tonight also loses the chance to participate in the American Idol summer tour, which is a good way to get publicity and some bucks off ticket sales. With that in mind, last night should‘ve been pretty good, right?Well, it wasn‘t the most memorable thing, really. In fact, some of us would rather forget it. Mind you, we‘re only referring to most of the performances last night, not all of it. That‘s pretty evident from the numbers we‘re crunching today: the poll numbers are landslides, and my bottom three is the exact same as Abbey‘s bottom three. Fantasy TV is saying the same thing, too. Does that mean tonight‘s elimination is an absolute certainty?  Read more »
I spent thirty minutes thinking of something to say about Paige Miles‘ elimination. It was a struggle. What do you say about someone who you never really cared much about?Okay, okay. I did not mean to sound harsh. I also felt bad when Ryan Seacrest finally announced that she was going home. I felt bad when Simon Cowell, in all his blunt honesty, told her that they won‘t use the save on her anyway, so she shouldn‘t bother singing.  Read more »
And just when we thought this week‘s theme on American Idol would mean easy pickings for the contestants, well, think again.Calling last night the worst performance show in Idol history isn‘t an exaggeration. Even I can‘t remember a night where the performances were, for the most part just consistently horrible. (Blah, to put it nicely.) Some might say it‘s because this season‘s contestants are the worst in the show‘s history. Some might think it‘s just a matter of song choices--and, for someone who‘s found a bunch of really good performers this year, I think that is the case.  Read more »
You were not hallucinating if you thought you spied a member of the undead in the American Idol audience during last night‘s results show. As the camera panned over the cheering crowd, I could have sworn I saw someone with blood dripping down their face.At first I thought there had been an accident with the brand new stage ala season 8, or that Paige‘s vocals the night before had actually managed to raise the dead ... but it just turned out to be some of Siobhan Magnus‘ guests.  Read more »
American Idol still has a lot of work to do before season 9 can be considered a success. Idol is still in the process of removing the worst of the Top 24. Nearly every contestant seems to be playing it safe. But maybe this will be the week it all changes, maybe as Lilly Scott sang, "A Change is Gonna Come."As you know it‘s R&B and Soul week and  Usher is serving as a mentor. The Top 10 will  certainly need it, save perhaps Michael Lynche, who‘s at home in the genre. Maybe Andrew Garcia too, but I‘ve given up on him long ago, so I don‘t have many expectations. I‘ve learned better this season.  Read more »
This week‘s theme on American Idol should fit some: R&B. In a way, I‘m saying that because some of the Top 10 can pull off an R&B track nicely. In another way, it‘s because the genre itself is so wide and so diverse you can‘t exactly pinpoint what it really sounds like and all--something you can accuse some contestants of being.Sure, we all describe current R&B as soulful, a little bit like hip-hop only without the oomph, a little bit like jazz only without being too sleepy. But back then, in the late 1940s when the term was first used, R&B--or rhythm and blues, to be exact--referred to music created by blacks, and could mean anything from boogie woogie to the more successful gospel releases.  Read more »
I have a feeling there‘ll be some sort of surprise tonight. My basis for that: I had a hard time choosing my bottom three. Not everybody performed as expected: there were at least two unexpected flourishes, two long-brewing smash hits, and one spectacular stumble. (At least according to the judges.) And considering the voting patterns over the last few weeks--the power of the Worsters, of Twitter users and us, the plain old fanbase--it‘s pretty hard to point out anything that‘s 75% guaranteed.But that doesn‘t mean we won‘t try. We‘re still crunching the numbers, the ones you threw our way through last night‘s polls and your Fantasy TV picks for elimination. And Abbey and I, we who watch each American Idol performance at least thrice (I think) to make sense of the performances, have our picks too. Right now it seems we‘re all in agreement, but unlike last week--when Paige Miles‘ elimination was beyond guaranteed--I have this odd feeling in my tummy. For one, why are we talking about the save? Here are the numbers, then.  Read more »
As expected from American Idol this year, there was nothing to look forward to. I can remember last season, when I was really glued to the screen, waiting for particular people to sing particular songs. This year, I multi-tasked away without even glancing at the television. Sure, I listened, but no one captivated me. But upon a second watch, there were some solid stand outs.  Read more »
Aha! So it is an upward trajectory on American Idol this week. Those we expected to tank, didn‘t. Those we expected to do well, did even better. The worst performance of the night? Not really all that bad, in my opinion. Does that make things easier for us? Absolutely not. Can I scream "Help!" now?But we still have our picks for eliminaton, although the deliberation process was longer than usual. What Abbey and I agreed on, surprisingly, seems to fit with what most of you thought via Fantasy TV and the polls. Here‘s who we think is getting "A Ticket to Ride" tonight.  Read more »
If anyone needs advice, it‘s this crop of American Idol finalists. Luckily, they have me, their Dear Abbey. All season long, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from American Idol contestants with real snarky advice. This week I offer advice to Big Mike, Kara DioGuardi and suggest Idol harakiri to He Bangs.  Read more »
One thought came to me when word of Adam Lambert returning to American Idol as a guest mentor for came out: Why? One, it‘s barely a year since he was named runner-up last season, and you can‘t exactly say he‘s chalked up a lot of experience since then (and I‘m counting his theater years). Two, if they‘re looking to have a former Idol mentor, they should‘ve considered a lot of other names--if Kelly Clarkson was available, she would‘ve made an ideal choice.Then this week‘s theme made it all clear: the songs of Elvis Presley.  Read more »
Week after week we hear the same critique from the judges on American Idol: "you didn‘t sound contemporary, relevant or current." Every single one of the nine remaining contestants left on Idol has received this critique. And if your name is Katie Stevens, you can all but guarantee at least one of the judges will tell you this every week However, if the judges are going for contemporary, current or relevantthis season, they‘re making it next to impossible by giving theaspiring Idols dated themes including: The Rolling Stones, Soul Week,The Lennon/McCartney Songbook, and this week, the songs of ElvisPresley. What‘s next, American Idol? Songs of the Sacred Harp? DiscoWeek? Jazz Standards recorded before 1950? Read more »
"A little less conversation, a little more action please. All this aggravation ain‘t satisfactioning me. A little more bite and a little less bark. A little less fight and a little more spark..." That Elvis was a prescient fellow, not only did he help invent rockabilly and Rock‘n‘Roll, he wrote a song in 1968 that seems as if it were hand-written advice to tonight‘s Top 9 and their overly chatty, aggressive host, Ryan Seacrest. Hopefully, as the Top 9 tackles the songs of Elvis, there is a little less conversation and a little more action. Hell, I could deal with a lot more action.  Read more »
American Idol musical director Rickey Minor is snapping up a new gig: he will be joining The Tonight Show with Jay Leno as its new bandleader.TMZ reports that the veteran composer and producer, who worked as musical director for artists such as Beyonce, Alicia Keys and Whitney Houston, will replace departing Tonight Show band leader Kevin Eubanks.  Read more »
The most exciting thing that happened in last night‘s American Idol was... waiting for everything to be over so that Glee could start. And that‘s saying something.Last night‘s performances were pretty sedate. I‘m having a hard time choosing a standout performance--the sort that stands out for the right reasons, mind you. Crystal Bowersox bored me, Lee Dewyze and Casey James didn‘t deliver anything new, Siobhan Magnus is getting lost (sniff), and Tim Urban still isn‘t getting there (although surprisingly he is).  Read more »
Ryan Seacrest had a strong warning last night. The only save the judges can use this season has been used on Michael Lynche. Once you get the least number of votes, you‘re going home. There are no more second chances.If only it was that easy. American Idol last night was underwhelming: the performances weren‘t really up to par with Elvis Presley. Save one or two contestants, anybody could be going home tonight. The numbers suggest, though, that Andrew Garcia is one of those people going home tonight. And the other person going home? That‘s where the hard data I‘m crunching comes in.  Read more »
This is an exciting week for Fantasy TV players as there will be two Idol contestants going home tonight. Anoop is here to help you make your picks of who could be next to pack their bags. Get an insider‘s thoughts on who could be going home tonight and why.  It‘s never too late to join the American Idol contest. Find out what you could win.  Read more »
American Idol‘s Top 9 took on the songs of Elvis (Presley, not Costello, who was too busy making a cameo as himself on the series premiere of HBO‘s Treme this week).  What followed was a great performance ... by mentor Adam Lambert, whose talented tongue worked its magic on Abbey Simmons this week.Check Out Abbey‘s Thoughts from the Performance Show>>While Lambert‘s advice was spot-on, the singers sadly did not take it, offering up another sleepy performance we‘ve seen before.  But who‘s going home and what did Abbey and I think of all the singers?  Listen to the full podcast for all the answers.  Read more »
Sorry "Elvis is alive" conspiracy theorists, I‘m pretty sure last night‘s American Idol performance show proved once and for all, The King is dead. Because even if Elvis had stayed silent all these years in some remote Swiss chalet, surely he would have broken his cover and sent out an all points bulletin decrying last night‘s dreadfully boring interpretations of his songs.    I spent a lot of time since last night wondering how the Top 9 performed Elvis with no energy, but then I realized this is the same group who performed The Rolling Stones with no rock and "Soul Week" with no soul.  It‘s getting high time we just come out and say it: Worst. Season. Ever.  At least there are consequences for those doldrums tonight, when not one, but two contestants will be eliminated.  You already know who we think will be eliminated and who Anoop Desai thinks will be eliminated, but watch along with me to see if we‘re right or if there‘s another "what the hell America?" moment awaiting us. As we all know, if there is, we‘re pretty much SOL because the lone save was used on Big Mike last week. Let‘s see if we‘ll be calling him Big Mi(sta)ke after tonight‘s eliminations, shall we? Read more »
On the heels of a double elimination on American Idol, we‘ve got updates on the stuff that came out this week: Rickey Minor‘s departure, Adam Lambert as mentor, and that Brian Dinkleman joke. Oh, and guess who‘s appearing on Idol Gives Back?  Read more »
As Ryan Seacrest shared with us last night, next week‘s theme on American Idol will be the lamentable cheese-tastic "Inspirational Songs." And American Idol does mean inspirational as in "Wind Beneath My Wings," "Footprints in the Sand" and motivational posters with soaring eagles.  Instead of having the contestants choose songs that personally inspire them, the Idol Powers That Be have created a list of "inspirational" songs for the Top 7 to choose from. They‘re inspiring all right... but not in the way that Idol may want them to be. They inspire me to turn on Norwegian Death Metal, invest in ear plugs, and prepare for a performance that is destined to be hammier than Easter Dinner. But don‘t take my word for it, just check out this list of approved inspirational songs. When you‘re done and you‘ve recovered from the sugar shock of it all, be sure to share with me what song you think suits the contestants best. Read more »
Just three things for tonight‘s American Idol roundup. One‘s about Kris Allen, one‘s about Ryan Seacrest, and one‘s about Idol Gives Back.  Read more »
Courtesy of American Idol master-blogger MJ  (MJsbigblog), comes word that American Idol is releasing a compilation CD of this season‘s Top 10 contestants.  The album comes out on May 11, but we already have the track list and album cover, and they are, to put it kindly, interesting. Much like the rest of season 9, the album‘s track list and cover has me scratching my head. The styling of the cover seems to be "soap opera divas and villains" or  "let‘s see how ridiculous we can make these kids look." And the track list isn‘t much better ... I know picking the best track from some of these contestants are slim pickings, but seriously "Under My Thumb?" I‘m no Tim Urban fan, but save his initial rendition of "Apologize" any other song He Bangs has sung would be better. Sadly, it‘s not just Tim whose chosen track is befuddling at best. Just look for yourself: Read more »
This morning Hollywood gossip site TMZ reported that Crystal Bowersox almost quit American Idol about two weeks ago after what must have been R&B and soul week. The website reported that Crystal walked off the show and only decided to return after the counseling and guidance of one Ryan Seacrest.  Read more »
Lady Antebellum and Miranda Lambert dominated this year‘s Academy of Country Music Awards, scoring three each.Lambert was named Top Female Vocalist, and her album Revolution was named Album of the Year, in ceremonies earlier in Las Vegas. The music video for her song "White Liar" was also named Video of the Year in a surprise announcement before the main ceremonies. Read more »
In today‘s edition of the American Idol roundup, we‘ve got bits on Paula Abdul‘s rumored (and denied) return, more on the the Crystal Bowersox almost quits story, and a just ousted contestants return to the Idol stage.  Read more »
If anyone needs advice, it‘s this crop of American Idol finalists. Luckily, they have me, their Dear Abbey. All season long, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from American Idol contestants with real snarky advice.This week I offer advice to a queasy America, a disinterested Simon Cowell and a betrayed MamaSox.  Read more »
Hope you‘re not lactose intolerant America, because you‘re about to get a heaping serving of cheese on tonight‘s American Idol. Tonight the Top 7 sings "inspirational songs," a cheesy theme if there ever was one. That desperation you smell? It‘s not just Ryan Seacrest gunning for Simon Cowell‘s job, it is American Idol trying desperately to regain its ratings by any means possible, including musical manipulation. Then again, in such a lackluster season, a theme that draws from songs with titles like "Heaven Help Us All," "I Will Survive"  and "The Impossible Dream," seems strangely fitting.  Take a Whiff of the Cheese: By seeing all the available song choices for tonight. As well as the songs we hope the contestants sing, here. So watch along with me tonight as we see who dares sing an Idol coronation song, who manages to make a cheesy song even cheesier (my bet is on Big Mike), and just how Teflon Tim Urban manages to survive another week. Who do you think will find corporate poster style SUCCESS with this week‘s theme? And who do you think will stink up the stage like Limburger? Read more »
After last night‘s inspirational songs, someone is going home. Former American Idol contestant,  Anoop Desai, is here to help you make your Fantasy TV picks for who could be leaving the competition. Get an insider‘s thoughts on who could be going home tonight and why.  Are you playing Idol Fantasy TV yet? Join the competition any time for a chance to win these amazing prizes Read more »
The Top 7 sang inspirational songs on American Idol, and this week Abbey Simmons and I were inspired to tears by one singer and boredom by six others.  That‘s right, American Idol is back to living up to the unofficial subtitle of this season, "Crystal vs. a Group of Sucky Karaoke Singers."Check Out Abbey‘s Recap of the Top 7 Performance Show>>That‘s not entirely true.  Abbey and I also managed to find goodness in performers that the other thought was terrible, and we‘re predicting two different singers to go home, though they‘re both very pretty. And we‘re not talking about Siobhan Magnus.  Read more »
On tonight‘s American Idol roundup, we‘ve got a guest on this season‘s finale, a couple of bits about Kelly Clarkson, and more proof that things aren‘t going as well as we thought with this bunch of contestants. And no, I don‘t mean an arguing kind of thing.  Read more »
Tonight‘s American Idol is all about charity and giving back. So hopefully American Idol finally gives us what we‘ve been waiting for all season ... the elimination of Tim Urban. Think of it as charity to our ears or giving back to the idea that American Idol is a singing competition.  Think of the children! The children! Or, if not the children, think of Lilly Scott, Alex Lambert and every other person who‘s been sent home instead of Tim Urban. Do it for them, as well as yourself, America. Donate: to Idol Gives BackBut tonight is about so much more than eliminating Tim Urban; it is about having musicians who wouldn‘t dream of being on American Idol perform on the show, all in the name of a good cause. It is about American Idol using its behemoth stature for good, not evil. It is about donating whatever you can to Idol Gives Back and enjoying two hours of musical performances from the likes of Elton John, Carrie Underwood and Mary J. Blige. You know, people who can actually sing. Watch along with me as we enjoy anhour and forty five minutes two plus hours of performances that have virtually nothing to do with season 9 of American Idol, as well as the magical moment when Tim Urban is either eliminated or my head implodes from frustration.  Read more »
Before the competition even began, Katie Stevens was told she had what it took to win it all. With a voice and musical taste that belied her youth, Katie seemed poised to make it all the way to the American Idol finale. After all, in a season of singer-songwriters, Katie was cut from the pop diva cloth and fit the big-voice-little-girl equation that Idol loves so much. But it was not meant to be and Katie Stevens was eliminated from American Idol this week. Katie sat down and chatted with members of the American Idol press after her emotional elimination and displayed the maturity that seemed to hamper more than help her on stage. You have rarely heard a better spoken 17-year-old. Katie warmly chatted with us about Kara and Simon‘s tug of war over whether she should go country or pop, the most difficult part of being on Idol and what she would have sung during next week‘s inspirational song theme. Here are the highlights of Katie‘s interview: Read more »
Somewhere, "High School Student" Aaron Kelly is doing a happy dance. That‘s because the Top 6 have been tasked with singing the songs of Shania Twain, a theme that should be near and dear to the country crooners heart.Shania, who has already made an appearance as a guest judge this season, will return as a mentor and the source of songs for the Top 6. As a mentor, we hope that Shania brings the same level-headed expertise and wry sense of humor that made her our favorite guest judge of the audition. Read more »
Say what you will about Tim Urban, and believe me I have, you have to give the kid credit for being incredibly positive, well-mannered and sweet. Despite being eliminated from American Idol last night and not being allowed to sing his farewell song, Tim was audibly all-smiles this morning when he talked with members of the American Idol press. Well, almost all-smiles, there was one name that brought out a dour side to Tim, that of his biggest supporters: Vote for the Worst. It would seem the one person that dislikes Vote for the Worst more than BuddyTV commenters, is Tim himself. Tim admitted frankly he‘s no fan of VFTW saying, "I‘m not excited I was on their website."  You can read the rest of Tim‘s thoughts on Vote for the Worst, his time on American Idol and what‘s next for him and his perfect bangs below.  Read more »
On the American Idol roundup this weekend, the controversy surrounding Kelly Clarkson‘s Indonesia gig reaches full circle, and Simon Cowell‘s marriage gets delayed. But first, not-so-good news for folks like me...  Read more »
Todrick Hall‘s days on American Idol may be over, but he‘s hoping he won‘t be leaving FOX any time soon. Todrick used the majority of his elimination interview time to campaign for a spot on Glee and he promises he‘ll be campaigning non-stop until you see him singing with New Directions. When he wasn‘t talking about Glee, Todrick took the time to clear the air about the pre-season scam scandal, compare himself to Lady Gaga and shared the innovative plans he had for this week‘s Rolling Stones theme.  Read more »
Throughout season 9 of American Idol we wondered why the judges‘ seemed extra harsh on curly-haired cutie Katelyn Epperly, but after sitting in on a conference call with the latest eliminated Idol contestant, we think we have an answer: a wee bit of an attitude. Though Katelyn seemed all innocence and rose petals on the show, during her exit interview she was barely able to contain her distaste for American Idol and  mainstream pop music and its audience. If you thought Lilly Scott was angry or disdainful of American Idol during her interview, just wait till you read what Katelyn Epperly had to say.  Read more »
Last Thursday‘s American Idol results show was all kinds of wrong for all kinds ofreasons, but none more heart breaking than the elimination of AlexLambert. Not only was Alex clearly crestfallen over the elimination,crying and refusing to leave the stage, with his ouster we lost themost unique and lovely vocals of season 9. On Friday, Alex participated in a conference call and his disappointmentwas obvious. Alex didn‘t sound like someone had just killed his puppy,he sounded like someone had killed ALL puppies. I have neverparticipated in a sadder interview. As I tried not to cry for him,  Alex shared his thoughts on why hewas eliminated on Idol, his plans now that the show is done and whatsong he would‘ve sung had he stuck around for this week‘s RollingStones theme.  Read more »
American Idol got a lot less interesting last night with the elimination of Lilly Scott.  Lilly, with her two-toned silver hair, hipster styling and unconventional voice, served as a pleasant reminder that music exists and thrives beyond the mainstream and cookie-cutter Idol-produced pop stars.  Despite being the anti-thesis of all things Idol, Lilly seemed to be thriving in the competition, earning high praise from the judges on her originality and vision as an artist. It seemed if anyone was going to break the rigidity of the Idol mold, it would be Lilly Scott. Sadly, it was not meant to be, as Lilly was eliminated in one of the most head-scratching Idol elimination episodes in the history of the show. Even in the face of disappointment, Lilly retained what we loved most about her: her fierce independent streak. When asked if she had any parting words after elimination, Lilly didn‘t suppress her frustration, "I just don‘t know what American wants to hear." As hundreds of thousands of Americans were screaming at their TV: "You Lilly, we want to hear you!" Lilly exited American Idol with her head held high and her indie spirit intact. Today she sat down and chatted with members of the American Idol press and continued to voice her confusion over America‘s insatiable desire for things they‘ve seen and heard over and over again. Here are the highlights of the interview.   Read more »
We may have seen the last of Lacey Brown on American Idol, but I doubt we‘ve seen the last of Lacey Brown.  After her American Idol ouster Lacey sat down and chatted with members of the press to discuss her time on the show and what‘s next for her. In her exit interview Lacey definitely took the "glass is half full" approach, praising her Idol experience and speaking with confidence about her future in the music industry. Lacey took the time to chat about her unique voice, her musical inspirations, and how trying out for season 8 compared to making the Top 24 for season 9. Here are the highlights from our interview with Lacey Brown.   Read more »
Last night Paige Miles was eliminated from American Idol. This morning she sat down to whisper through an interview with members of the American Idol press. It would seem that Paige‘s laryngitis had come back with a vengeance, as she clearly struggled to speak during the 30 minute interview. While I praised Simon Cowell last night for his bluntness with Paige, telling her that no matter what she sang like, there was no way the judges would be using the save. Paige was hurt by Simon‘s snub, saying she believed the judges would at least let her sing before making their decision. Paige may have thought it was mean, but I still think it was magnanimous. Read the highlights of our interview with Paige including the health issues which plagued her during the show, what‘s next in her career and what she would have performed had she survived to face R&B Week. Read more »
Last night Didi Benami was the 15th person eliminated from season 9 of American Idol. This morning, she took the time to chat with members of the American Idol press about her experience on the show and what her plans are moving forward as a musician. An exhausted Didi chatted amiably about her Idol experience, including her brand new best friends Crystal Bowersox and Siobhan Magnus and that awkward grilling by Ryan Seacrest Tuesday night. Here are the highlights of our interview with Didi Benami.  Read more »
When season 9 of American Idol began, we predicted that Andrew Garcia would win it all. Instead he was eliminated unceremoniously in the first 15 minutes of last night‘s elimination show having never met the high hopes we had for him. This morning Andrew sat down to chat with members of the American Idol press about his time on Idol, his "brother for life" Lee Dewyze and his magic Idol moment covering Paula Abdul‘s "Straight Up."  Here are the highlights of Andrew‘s interview.   Read more »
Well, what else did you expect this week? American Idol took on inspirational songs and it was either depressingly cheesy or depressingly disappointing. Well, all but one performance, which we all knew would go great. (Too great, in fact.) And there‘s this one performance which leaves us wondering, "why do we even have this guy on the show?" It‘s like we‘re following a script, each and every week, and it‘s getting so obvious that we could either (1) end this season right here and declare a winner, or (2) keep this thing going as a mediocre-at-best warm-up to Glee.That said, I‘ll get to the point, because there‘s no point complaining when there‘s nothing new to complain about. And I apologize for sounding a bit annoyed. Because, well, I am.  Read more »
For a week that‘s supposed to be inspiring, American Idol instead left me uninspired and bored. For the most part, at least. I think everybody was, too, because the numbers I‘m seeing right now are the same old stuff we‘ve seen over, and over, and over again...Well, here are the numbers I‘ve crunched, then. Enter your votes from our live recap last night, and your picks on our little Fantasy TV community. Enter, also, the bottom three of your esteemed (and disappointed?) Idol experts, Abbey and yours truly. I won‘t say much this time. That‘s pretty much the theme I have for this week, right?  Read more »
Hope you‘ve got your boots shined and 10-gallon hat ready for tomorrow night because this week the American Idol Top 6 will be taking on the Shania Twain song book. Yeehaw? While at least one member of the Top 6 feels right in the saddle with this week‘s theme, it‘s an easy bet that anyone who isn‘t named Aaron Kelly does not. See Where the Top 6 Stand in This Week‘s Power Rankings What surprised me most about preparing this week‘s song suggestions is how many of Shania‘s songs I know by heart. (Seriously, you can quiz me on the lyrics to "Whose Beds Have Your Boots Been Under?" any day.) If you listened to the radio in the 1990‘s, whether it was tuned to a pop station or a country station, Shania‘s songs were ubiquitous. That‘s both a blessing and a curse to the Top 6 - they‘re versatile songs that can be melded to multiple genres, but they‘re also incredibly well known.  That‘s why the contestants need to either stick to Shania‘s lesser known songs or make them their own this week, or I predict an awful lot of karaoke comments from the judges. Will my suggestions have you saying "That Don‘t Impress Me Much?"Let‘s see.  Read more »
If anyone needs advice, it‘s this crop of American Idol finalists. Luckily, they have me, their Dear Abbey. All season long, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from American Idol contestants with real snarky advice.This week I offer my services and suggestions to Vote For The Worst‘s new princess, ink advice for Lee Dewyze and ways to spice things up for disinterested Shania Twain.  Read more »
American Idol has announced the dates for this year‘s American Idol Live! Tour, and like in previous years it‘s the perfect time for you to watch your favorites perform. Miss Didi Benami already? Or Andrew Garcia? Or Katie Stevens? Or Tim Urban (already)? Here‘s your chance to see them with the rest of the Top 6.The concerts kick off on July 1 and there are 49 concerts from that day until September 14. Most tickets go on sale May 15. But are you buying tickets? Let‘s talk about it over here. For now, the dates:  Read more »
On tonight‘s American Idol: the Top 6 sing the songs of Shania Twain, we finally have our first mentor born before 1970 and all six of the remaining contestants can actually sing. It‘s an American Idol miracle! But it‘s not time for celebration yet. Tonight‘s countrified  theme could buck even the strongest contestants like a rodeo bull and Shania‘s big ballads could make for the cheesiest performances since last week‘s inspirational theme, which was certified by the Cheese Makers of America. It‘s dangerous territory we‘re moseying into tonight and who will make it out of the Idol Corral to sing another week has never seemed less certain.What Shania Songs should the Top 6 Sing? See my Suggestions. Will tonight‘s Shania theme have me declaring "That Don‘t Impress Me Much?" or when all is said and sung, will I feel like serenading the Top 6 with one of Shania‘s iconic love songs? There‘s only one way to find out ... watch along with me.  Read more »
Many of you hit it right in the head: American Idol finally felt like American Idol this week. It might‘ve helped that the bottom-tier singers are gone now: there aren‘t horrendously bad performances, and it seems a pretty close race between the Top 6. That makes picking this week‘s best and worst performances quite hard. There was no runaway winner. There was no bottom-level loser. Some people relaxed a bit, and some really kept it up. Sure, you‘ll think differently (I say "Siobhan stumbled" and you‘ll probably say "she should‘ve gone!") but that what we‘re here for: to argue about it. Right? Anyway, the honor roll:  Read more »
After last night‘s rather strong performances of the top 6, someone has going home tonight. Former American Idol contestant, Anoop Desai, is here to help you make your Fantasy TV picks for who could be leaving the competition. Get an insider‘s thoughts on who could be going home tonight and why.  Are you playing Idol Fantasy TV yet? Join the competition any time for a chance to win these amazing prizes  Read more »
Last night the American Idol Top 6 tackled Shania Twain‘s songs and turned in strong performances. All of them, yes. Well, strong can take on many meanings here, but you know what I mean. In theory, having a tight six-way contest should make it harder to predict who‘s going home--and we all know anything can happen on Idol--but in this case, we all seem to agree on the same thing.As always, I‘ve taken all the numbers from our polls last night to your Fantasy TV activity, and did some magic (read: sorted them out) to see what you guys think. After that, I came up to Abbey and chatted about our bottom three... although no such chat happened, for reasons I‘ll explain later. All these figures point towards one thing: even as the contest got tighter, tonight‘s result shouldn‘t shock anyone... or is it?  Read more »
Without Tim Urban to kick around, American Idol voters are forced to eliminate someone who can actually sing tonight.  This week Abbey Simmons and I debate the Top 6, and while Abbey thinks the "twain" has left the station, I feel more like Anna Karenina at the end of the book.Read Abbey‘s Recap of the Top 6 Performances>>However, despite our disagreements on the four guys, we agree on the fact that the two remaining girls did not have a great week and that Crystal Bowersox‘s boyfriend is the unluckiest man in America.  Read more »
Last night American Idol finally felt like American Idol. All six contestants could sing and almost all of them brought their own spin to their songs. For the first time all season, artistry outweighed karaoke. It was a beautiful thing.  Unfortunately what made last night good is exactly makes tonight‘s elimination the most difficult yet. Just like Rod Stewart sang ... the 19th cut is the deepest. Who was the best of the best performance show yet? See our performance rankings. Will Big Mike‘s second chance come to an end tonight? Will "High School student" Aaron Kelly be sent back to homeroom? Will Siobhan‘s screeching signal her demise? We have our predictions, as does our American Idol expert Anoop Desai but there‘s only one way to find out who‘s right ... watch along live with me.  Read more »
In the tradition of such modern themes such as Elvis Presley week and Lennon/McCartney week, the American Idol Top 5 will take on the songs of Frank Sinatra next week. Some way of making contemporary artists out of these guys, right?No, I‘m not belittling next week‘s theme. In fact, I‘m of the belief that today‘s songs will not stand the test of time as much as these classics have. It‘s no surprise why many of Old Blue Eye‘s songs are still being covered by artists today, including next week‘s mentor, Harry Connick, Jr. Also, many of his hits remain part of popular culture, a testament to his successful six-decade career, and his distinction as being one of pop music‘s first superstars.  Read more »
If you thought Siobhan Magnus‘ responses to judges were drawn out and detailed, just wait till you see what she had to say to American Idol reporters! The morning after her rather shocking elimination, season 9‘s resident big-noted oddball chatted with members of the American Idol press in detail about her elimination, her signature scream and what‘s next for her as an artist. In her interview Siobhan showed the same quirky realness that so many people were drawn to. In a show and season that has at times been painfully predictable, Siobhan‘s off-the-cuff commentary and unwavering devotion to individuality was a pleasant break from the monotonous sameness of the Idol machine.  Even in her interview, Siobhan was full of surprises. Here‘s what she had to say about what former Idol winner helped her discover her glory note, her former contestants and her big dreams for the future and her scream. Read more »
On today‘s American Idol roundup, a taste of how huuuuge Lady Gaga‘s performance next week is, plus more reaction to Siobhan Magnus‘ elimination, and Vote for the Worst‘s new pick. You might be happy with that one.  Read more »
This week the Top 5 are tasked with singing the oh-so current songs of Frank Sinatra. To seemingly guarantee that the Top 5 sound old-fashioned, the American Idol powers that be have banned guitars in favor of big band backing. Because nothing says current like old-school standards with big band orchestration. I‘m a big Frank fan myself, but in a season that has been plagued by critiques of contestants not seeming "current" or "contemporary" enough, the songs of Sinatra seem a misguided theme at best.  However misguided, it is the theme for the week and we‘ve chosen the songs we think best suit the remaining five contestants. First and foremost, Frank Sinatra songs no one should sing this week: "Someone to Watch Over Me" (done by Katharine McPhee and Alison Iraheta) and "My Funny Valentine" (done by Melinda Doolittle and Matt Giraud). Both have been done well and multiple times on the American Idol stage. It‘s time for some other standards to get a chance to be sung. Here‘s what we hope the Top 5 sing and why: Read more »
On tonight‘s American Idol recap, we finally get an explanation for that sudden change of themes during Top 11 week. Adam Lambert‘s also here, but first, a little surprise.  Read more »
If anyone needs advice, it‘s the American Idol Top 5. Luckily, they have me, their Dear Abbey. All season long, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from American Idol contestants with real snarky advice.This week I offer my services and suggestions to Casey James, Aaron Kelly and a Top 5 struggling to sound current with songs as older than their grandparents.  Read more »
As Frank Sinatra himself might have said, this clam bake is headed for bombsville. For a show looking for America‘s next great star, American Idol sure has a funny way of doing it. In a season full of old-fashioned themes, none have been more so than this week‘s "The Songs of Sinatra." Just consider this, when Sinatra got his start in the music industry in 1935: Franklin D. Roosevelt was President, Babe Ruth played his last game in the Major League and Social Security was created. Because nothing says current and contemporary like FDR and Babe Ruth. (Or Frank Sinatra for that matter ...) I swear to you, if Simon Cowell even thinks about telling the Top 5 they don‘t sound current, I‘m going to go all Office Space style on my TV. What Should the Top 5 Sing? See our Sinatra Song Suggestions But all hope is not yet lost. Last season‘s Top 5 were also tasked with singing a couple of Frank‘s most famous songs during Rat Pack Week, which was arguably one of the most memorable Idol performance shows of all time. Will season 9 have the same sort of success with Sinatra? Watch along with me and see if "Anything Goes" or if we‘re all about to witness "Somethin‘ Stupid." Read more »
The idea is simple: the less finalists we have to consider, the harder it gets to predict who‘ll be going home on American Idol. That was the case last week, when almost all of us predicted Aaron Kelly packing his bags, only to see Siobhan Magnus go home. This week? It might be a bit easier.However there‘s no telling what would happen next. Some say the judges may have been too harsh on certain contestants, and the fans might have risen up and started a revolution on the phone lines. But will that make any dent? Or is fate not going to be denied? As always, I‘m here crunching the numbers from Fantasy TV and last night‘s polls, because they‘re as delicious as muesli in the morning. Also, Abbey and I--your esteemed Idol experts--have our picks for elimination. That happens to be unanimous, too...  Read more »
Did this year‘s American Idol finalists do Frank Sinatra‘s songs justice? I expect a million answers to that. For me,  it was a mixed bag--some were bad, some were good. The one thing I‘m sure of: there aren‘t any jaw-droppingly awesome performances last night. It can mean two things: the theme didn‘t fit the Top 5, or the Top 5 just aren‘t able to do the Chairman of the Board any justice. What do you think?  Read more »
The American Idol Top 5, as always, left Abbey Simmons and I a bit underwhelmed.  There was one stand-out, a lot of mediocrity, and a very "baaa-d" performance.But two things became quite clear.  Casey James will be going home, and Crystal Bowersox is no longer the frontrunner to win the whole competition.  Listen to the full podcast or continue reading below for the highlights.  Read more »
Don‘t mind the sobbing America, that‘s just me preparing for Casey James‘ inevitable departure.  Of course, tonight‘s elimination could be another shocker like Siobhan‘s last week (or god forbid, Lilly Scott and Alex Lambert‘s weeks ago), but I‘m pretty sure bleating like a barn animal when trying to hold a high note will get just about anyone eliminated from American Idol, no matter how good Kara Dioguardi thinks they look shirtless. Need a Refresher on Last Night‘s Show? Check Out our Performance Rankings. Of course I knew Casey was never going to win American Idol, but what I didn‘t expect was how upsetting the prospect of his elimination might be. It‘s true, in a lackluster season ... I still care. (There, I admitted it.)  Sure, Casey is a one-trick blues pony who proved last night he may actually lose the ability to sing when not holding a guitar, but I liked his one trick so much more than Big Mike‘s or Aaron Kelly‘s (and even Lee Dewyze‘s). So don‘t mind me if I‘m in some sort of funk tonight, the near-certain loss of a personal favorite and the promise of a Lady Gaga performance will do that to this girl.The only thing I am excited about for tonight is the promise of Harry Connick Jr. taking to the stage and not outshining one of the Top 5 ... though if he continues to outshine Ryan Seacrest, clearly I am just fine with that. So watch along and comfort me tonight, won‘t you? Or if you‘re the kind of person who gets kicks out of stompin‘ on people‘s dreams, you can do that too ... "That‘s Life" and American Idol, after all.  Read more »
Aaron Kelly may have looked (and at times sounded like) a pre-teen on American Idol, but in his exit interview with members of the Idol press, Aaron sounded like a seasoned pro. Sweet and thoughtful as ever, Aaron spoke with surprising ease and confidence. It made me even more convinced that my early assessment of Aaron was spot on: he may have been too inexperienced to win American Idol, but give him a few years and he‘ll do fine on his own without the title. Aaron spent his interview talking about the country roads he hopes will make him a star, his favorite mentor (and mine) Harry Connick Jr., and his Star Wars inspired nickname. Here are the highlights of our interview with Aaron. Read more »
Whether you are Team Dewyze or Team Bowersox, it seems consensus can be reached on one thing about American Idol: something needs to change. Fast. American Idol‘s rapidly declining ratings seem to echo the thoughts ringing through the heads of American Idol fans everywhere: this just isn‘t the same show I fell in love with, got excited about every week and anticipated every season.  And I don‘t buy it‘s just a lackluster season in terms of talent, something much deeper is wrong with American Idol: from the repetitive themes and song choices to questionable mentors to continuous overage time, plus an aggressive host and disinterested judges.  Not to mention ... Simon Cowell won‘t be back to save Idol with his quips, witticism and British smarm next year. With ratings reaching dubiously low levels and fan complaints at a fevered pitch, it seems American Idol and FOX itself have taken notice. This week on the official American Idol website a survey appeared about viewer satisfaction with Idol and how the show can be improved and it would appear there are no sacred cows. The survey asks detailed questions about themes, the three judges we assume are coming back next season, the absence of Paula Abdul, guest judges and your watching habits. You can see (and take) the survey for yourself: here. When FOX is done sifting through their survey results, they should stop on by here, because we too have a list of suggestions on how to save American Idol.   Read more »
[Updated]: Apparently the Idol powers that be realized how limited (and crummy) the 34 song selections were, so they added 16 more. They should have just kept it at the originals ... because I think it‘s safe to say Crystal Bowersox and Casey James won‘t be trying to tackle "Lose Yourself" by Eminem and as awesome as it would be, Big Mike won‘t be singing "Superfly." The updated song list is below. Nope, nobody pressed rewind and brought us back to season 8. Next week, the four remaining American Idol finalists will take on the songs of the cinema, with Jamie Foxx as their mentor.And yes, those two things happened last year. Foxx, who worked as a musician before getting acclaim for his acting, has mentored the Top 5 last season during Rat Pack week. Similarly, this week‘s theme--songs of the cinema--was used during Top 7 week last year. Read more »
If Season 9 of American Idol was a person, its friends would probably be planning an intervention at this very moment. I‘m not calling American Idol an addict per se, but it sure does seem to have a penchant for self-sabotage this season.  The abysmal song choices for this week‘s "Songs of the Cinema" theme is only the most recent example. Despite being a promising theme with plenty of  interesting (and current) possibilities, the expanded 50-song selections continue to show Idol‘s bizarre fascination with the ‘80s and songs that cannot be sung in any way that doesn‘t scream "karaoke" or "bad wedding singer."  Instead of going for soundtracks like Good Will Hunting (original Elliott Smith songs), Juno (The Kinks and Moldy Peaches), Garden State (the most mainstream "indie" record of all time), Wonder Boys (original Bob Dylan) or any of the Wes Anderson movies, Idol decided to go for the not at all cheesy themes from Rocky, Footloose, Caddyshack and Titanic. Read more »
If anyone needs advice, it‘s the American Idol Top 4. Luckily, they have me, their Dear Abbey. All season long, I‘ll be answering fictional questions from American Idol contestants with real snarky advice.This week I offer my services and suggestions to a shocked Casey James, a weightless Big Mike and the season‘s new front runner.   Read more »
Lights. Cameras. Action ... Well, we‘ll see about the action, from the looks of the uninspiring song list, it seems like American Idol‘s trip to the movies tonight might be best be used as an excuse for an hour long nap for exhausted Idol fans.  Fans like me, who can‘t believe that with a theme as vast as "songs of the cinema" the Idol powers that be decided on a list of rehashed songs we‘ve already heard on Idol and that are cheesier than Ellen‘s jokes.  What should the Top 4 Sing Tonight? See Our Song Suggestions. Tonight‘s theme isn‘t "a highway to the danger zone" but it certainly is "another boring ballad to the danger zone."  With viewers hemorrhaging from week-to-week, viewer dissatisfaction at an all time high and only three weeks of the competition remaining, season 9 of American Idol needs to be saved and STAT. One thing is for sure though, Disney ballads and songs previously performed by Kris Allen and Fantasia just aren‘t going to cut it.  So, will tonight‘s songs of the cinema be Oscar or Razzie worthy?  Grab some popcorn, a large soda to help keep you awake and watch along with me live as we inch closer to Crystal Bowersox or Lee Dewyze‘s Idol winning acceptance speech.  Read more »
Last week I pointed out that predicting who will be going home on American Idol gets harder as the number of contestants get smaller. This week it‘s harder. What else can you do with four contestants? It seems easy to pick who‘s going home, but it actually isn‘t.This week proved to be extra challenging. We‘ve got four contestants who have, arguably, done well throughout the season. We don‘t have one terribly bad performance that would‘ve easily singled a contestant out for elimination. We do have duets, which will mix things up just a little bit.  Read more »
This is probably the first time this season when I didn‘t really feel that excited for American Idol. We have a theme recycled from last year, a mentor recycled from last year, and songs recycled from last year, not to mention them being either cheesy or terribly out of place. Not even the idea of duets--a concept introduced during Top 4 week last year--got me giddy.And my expectations were both affirmed and busted. Yes, the solos weren‘t that good. The songs were cheesy and everyone except for Crystal played it safe. But the duets weren‘t as disastrous as I thought: everyone got that right, and it was more Adam/Allison than Kris/Danny.  Read more »
On movie week, the American Idol Top 4 sang songs from such classic pieces of American cinema as Free Willy and Batman Forever.  Abbey Simmons and I essentially agreed on all four solo performances, but the real battle comes in the two duets.  Abbey and I could not disagree more on which one was better, though we‘re in total agreement about who‘s in danger.Read Abbey‘s Full Recap of the Top 4 Performances>>  Read more »
After the shocking Mary Murphy-less judges‘ announcement yesterday from So You Think You Can Dance, head judge Nigel Lythgoe took to Twitter to talk about his shrill counterpart, announce more changes and make a dig at American Idol.  Season 7 of So You Think You Can Dance is all about change: from all-star partners, to a top 10, to the new judges‘ panel, to those judges controlling the results right up to the finale ... but there‘s more. Here‘s the latest on So You Think You Can Dance from the finger tips of Mr. Lythgoe himself.  Read more »
Last night on American Idol: the Top 4 sang the "songs of the cinema."  (And sorry cinephiles, according to FOX, Free Willy is included under the umbrella of cinema ... so you might as well go burn your Goddard and Fellini films now.)  Surprising no one who‘s been even casually watching season 9 the performances varied from Oscar worthy to repeat Razzie winners, in a trip down bad movie theme memory lane. Check Out: The Top 4 Performance Rankings From the Fans & the ExpertsTonight on American Idol: someone from the Top 4 either Michael Lynche or Casey James will have their final credit rolls. Of course, we could have another Daughtry sized shocker on our hands and Lee Dewyze or Crystal Bowersox could conceivably be eliminated. And with Daughtry performing on tonight‘s results show that would be some cinematic foreshadowing even Hitchcock could appreciate. Do we already know tonight‘s results or not? There‘s only one way to find out: watch along with me live and see who‘s end credits will roll on tonight‘s American Idol. Read more »
Even with the competition coming to a close, the American Idol news keeps on rolling in. For today‘s Idol news roundup we have: the Idol contract details that will keep Casey and Kara from consummating their cougar lust for at least six months, word on who won‘t be replacing Simon Cowell and a big pink-haired reason not to tune into next week‘s results show. First up, the most important Idol question ever: who will be replacing Simon Cowell? Or rather, who won‘t be? Word on the web is that FOX will keep quiet about who will replace His Smarminess on the panel until after the finale. This is most likely in hopes that that bit of news doesn‘t become a bigger story than who wins the competition itself (which it surely would), but we do know who won‘t be replacing Simon on the judge‘s panel: Elton John. Yes, you‘ve heard this story before, but now Access Hollywood is reporting that Elton turned down a $33 million offer to become an Idol judge.  Read more »
Next week on American Idol: the Top 3 contestants visit their hometowns, and for the first time all season, they won‘t be held back by a theme that has nothing to do with the kind of artist they hope to become. Yes, it‘s the week we‘ve all been waiting for: judges‘ and contestants‘ choice. The benefit of this week is two-fold: not only does it silence the judges‘ constant song choice criticism for at least one song, but Crystal, Casey and Lee will finally be able to show us exactly what they want us to see. This is the week when the all-important "What kind of artist are you?" question will be answered once and for all.  Read more »
There‘s no denying that  Michael Lynche was a huge part of season 9 of American Idol. And that‘s not just because, as he proudly told reporters, he stands at 6‘1‘‘, weighs 300 pounds and can bench press 505 pounds. (So, about 7.5 Ryan Seacrests ... right?)  No, Big Mike would‘ve been a big part of season 9 no matter his stature because he had the story line reality TV dreams of: he missed the birth of his first child to audition  and he was rescued from an early elimination with the judges‘ save. At the center of much of this season‘s drama and excitement, there towered Big Mike and his big voice. After his second elimination from American Idol, Big Mike chatted with members of the American Idol press about his Idol journey, missing the birth of his daughter and singing for his life. Here are the highlights.  Read more »
Summer is upon us and that means it‘s time to mark our calendars and bid farewell to some of our favorite shows, including Lost, Grey‘s Anatomy, Glee, and 24, just to name a few. To help you plan your TV schedule, here‘s a rundown of shows that are about to wrap up and their respective finale dates. Read more »
I‘m back on the American Idol round-up bit. In this edition, I‘ll cover what happened during the top three‘s hometown visits, a possible new title for Simon Cowell and a new video from some former Idol contestants.  Read more »
Tonight on American Idol: Lee Dewyze and Crystal Bowersox perform the judges‘ and their personal song selections ... while some tall, handsome fella with a guitar plays warm-up sets in between.  At least, that must be how it feels to be Casey James tonight, the invisible Idol. A Lee vs. Crystal finale seems all but certain, as it has for almost the entire season. Join the Discussion: What was the best and worst performances of season 9?But let‘s not put the cart before the horse. After all, stranger things have happened around finale time on American Idol before: Read more »
It is with a heavy heart and snarky pen that season 9 of American Idol draws to a close for this advice columnist. Sure, it may not have been a barn burner in terms of performance, but it has been a gold mine for advice givers. But season 9 isn‘t over yet, and the Top 3 still need my advice as much as ever, so I present to you the penultimate Dear Abbey of season 9.  Read more »
Competing on American Idol last night: Lee Dewyze and Crystal Bowersox. And someone else. Let‘s just leave it at that.We‘ve had weeks when we all agreed on who‘d be going home, but not with as much conviction as this week. We all think Casey James is going home. We all think it‘s going to be a Crystal/Lee finale. It‘s just a matter of "how much?" -- which is where I come in, as always. Read more »
This week the Top 3 performed on American Idol and everyone with a pulse already knows how the results show will end.  Casey James knew he was going home the minute he made the Top 3, and so did the judges.Read Abbey‘s Full Recap of the Top 3 Performance Show>>However, just because Abbey and I agree on whose going home doesn‘t mean there‘s nothing to talk about.  This week we broke down each of the final three singers and figured out their futures.  Listen to the full podcast or continue below for the highlights.  Read more »
Let‘s be honest: unless the biggest shock in the history of American Idol happens tonight, we all know what‘s about to happen. Tween girls will scream for Justin Bieber in a way that shames Siobhan Magnus‘ power notes. Ryan Seacrest will do something that makes us cringe. Casey James will be eliminated. And the Bowersox vs. Dewyze finale we‘ve been predicting since basically week one will go on as planned. Listen Up: The Penultimate Idol Podcast Can‘t we just start the proposed half an hour results show tonight? No? Fine. Then you better keep me company in the comments as we witness either the most obvious or the most shocking Idol results show in history.  Read more »
Two really obvious things hovered over us as we entered Top 3 week on American Idol. One, the finale will definitely be between Lee Dewyze and Crystal Bowersox. Two, Casey James has no chance in hell of making it through. Unless, of course, the daughters and the mothers (and the sons) revolt and trigger an unlikely series of events. But still, these are two really obvious things. There‘s no need to drill them, right?Well, in usual Idol fashion, they did. And the most surprising thing is, it all happened within the confines of one single performance: Lee Dewyze‘s take on "Hallelujah." Who would‘ve thought? Thus, a really special edition of this week‘s best and worst round-up, in wihch we will talk about one thing and one thing only.  Read more »
In a week‘s time, we‘ll know whether Crystal Bowersox or Lee Dewyze will be this season‘s American Idol, but right now it‘s all Dewyze all the time in terms of Idol news.Lee Dewyze: Season 9‘s First Billboard CharterNot only is Lee Dewyze your preeminent pick to be crowned American Idol next week, he‘s also the first contestant from season 9 to appear on a Billboard Chart ... and it‘s not even for his rendition of "Hallelujah." Thanks to idolsnow on Twitter we learn that Lee‘s pre-Idol cd Slumberland, which was released in January, just debuted at #32 on the Billboard Heatseekers chart. The Heatseekers chart tracks breaking artists who‘ve never charted in the Billboard 100. Lee is the 48th Idol contestant to appear on a Billboard chart and mjsbigblog has the complete list of Idol chart makers.  Read more »
So what do we know about next week‘s American Idol finale? One, it‘s Lee Dewyze and Crystal Bowersox fighting for the crown. Two, Christina Aguilera and Kris Allen will be performing. Three, it‘ll be Simon Cowell‘s very last show. And... that‘s pretty much it. For now, at least.  Read more »
I guess this means we won‘t see a reunion on The X Factor.Paula Abdul is set to join the upcoming CBS reality competition series Got to Dance, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The former American Idol judge will serve as the series‘ lead judge, mentor and coach, as well as an executive producer.  Read more »
It comes as no surprise that Casey James comes from a place called "Cool, Texas" because the easy-on-the-eyes bluesman was the epitome of cool during his American Idol exit interview. For a guy who was just eliminated from one of the biggest shows on television, there was a lot of easy laughter coming from Casey and not an ounce of ego.Perhaps that‘s because Casey was never supposed to be a legitimate contender. He was introduced to us as a joke, one that the judges continued to harp on all season rather than focusing on his considerable musical talent. Sure, we met Casey shirtless, but what he should be remembered for is being one of the best musicians who has ever graced the Idol stage. Here‘s what Casey had to say about starting Idol shirtless, staying humble and what‘s next for him. Read more »
Apart from the fact that we‘ll crown a winner to this year‘s American Idol this Wednesday, we‘re also saying goodbye to Simon Cowell. You know, that snarky Brit who wears either T-shirts or suits (in rare occasions) who‘s leaving after this week to work on the American version of The X Factor.It‘s expected that Wednesday night‘s finale will be as much a tribute to Simon as a celebration of who won, so we should expect a pretty big send-off. One of the faces we should expect: former judge Paula Abdul. Read more »
With one performance show and six songs standing between us and what is arguably the most closely contested American Idol finale ever, what Crystal and Lee sing this final week matters more than ever. Unfortunately for them, they don‘t really have much of a say in what they‘ll be singing.  While each of the two finalists will perform three songs this week, they only have a say on one song, and it has to be something they‘ve already performed this season. The other two songs Crystal and Lee will perform will be chosen by Idol creator and producer Simon Fuller and of course, there‘s the dreaded Idol coronation song. Instead of choosing their favorite or even their best performance of the season, Crystal and Lee should choose the songs that best speak to them as the artists they hope to be, as well as a song that could leave a lasting emotional impression on the voting public. That means no "That‘s Life" for Lee and no "Me & Bobby McGee" for Crystal. Here‘s what we hope Crystal and Lee choose this week from their past performances. Then, we play Simon Fuller for a second and make our "producer‘s choice."  Read more »
The final week of season 9 of American Idol is upon us, finally. It seems like it‘s been months since the audition process began .... oh right, it has been. It‘s also been months since we knew this was the finale we‘d be faced with: Crystal Bowersox vs. Lee Dewyze. And while that may not have made for the most exciting television, I‘m content with the two contestants left standing. They‘ve both earned their spots in the finale. On one side, you have Crystal, the most consistent performer of season 9. Despite being an unconventional Idol contestant, Crystal started out strong and remained strong the entire season. Even her "off weeks" were better than most of the Top 24‘s best. On the other side, you have Lee, who started out shaky but solid and has improved week after week. Crystal may have consistency behind her, but Lee has momentum. And while Crystal and Lee couldn‘t be further from Kris Allen and Adam Lambert, the match up definitely seems oddly familiar to last season: a pre-eminent favorite who just so happens to be an acquired taste versus a lovable underdog turned front-runner in a story arc of growth that America loves.  Read more »
FOX is trying to keep many details about Wednesday night‘s American Idol finale under wraps, but inevitably someone will mention something, and someone else will mention another, until we have a pretty big picture. Just looking at all these rumors makes my head spin!  Read more »
I have an Idol confession to make, friends: Even though Crystal Bowersox deserves to win American Idol tomorrow, I‘m  hoping she doesn‘t. It‘s a dilemma I‘ve been struggling with as a Crystal fan all season.  In fact, during Crystal‘s multi-week slump, I found myself actively hoping she‘d go the way of Chris Daughtry and Jennifer Hudson: Eliminated too early for how talented she is, but soon enough in the competition that she could easily outgrow the label of "former American Idol contestant." On the one hand, the most consistent contestant of a disappointing season deserves to be rewarded for making season 9 bearable. And on the other, a win would take Crystal away from the kind of artist she clearly wants to be: an original and her own woman.  Read more »
To quote Lee Dewyze, a backing gospel choir, Tim Urban, Maddie Curtis, Jason Castro, Jeff Buckley and Leonard Cohen: "Hallelujah!"It‘s the final performance night of American Idol season 9. Tonight marks the 42ndepisode in the 20th (!) week of the season, and, finally, the competition has come down to the stand-off we all predicted months ago: the soulful folk stylings of Crystal Bowersox, the most unlikely Idol contestant ever, versus the gravelly-voiced everyman charm of Lee Dewyze.Take a Look Back at Season 9:The 25 Worst Performances of Season 9The 25 Best Performances of Season 9The Best of the Rest of Season 9Dream Idol Finale Duets Simon Cowell‘s Most Memorable ‘Idol‘ Moments Crystal and Lee are neck and neck in what‘s arguably the closest Idol race in the history of the show, and it all comes down to tonight‘s performance. Will Crystal‘s consistency come through? Or will Lee‘s momentum carry him to victory in spite of shaky vocal performances for much of the season?  Read more »
Well, we‘ve made it: the American Idol finale. At around 10pm tonight we will finally know who wins this whole thing. Is it Crystal Bowersox, the dreadlocked girl with soul and passion? Is it Lee Dewyze, the guy next door with charm and emotion? Or have we we ceased to care?This finale may not be as exciting as the past few seasons, but we‘re still looking forward to learning who will be crowned the winner. It‘s quite clear by the way you all responded over the past few months or so -- in the polls, on Fantasy TV, and our recaps. Lemme take this chance by saying thank you to all of you for making this year‘s coverage work. It‘s been fun doing this, as always.  Read more »
It‘s the final debate of the American Idol season: Crystal Bowersox vs. Lee Dewyze.  In our epic podcast, Abbey Simmons and I judge the final and declare complete and total victory for Crystal, who gave a vocal smackdown to Lee in every round last night.  However, does it actually matter?  Despite the fact that Crystal was objectively better than Lee, one of us still thinks Lee Dewyze will be the winner.Read Abbey‘s Full Recap of the Finale>>  Read more »
After gathering his strength to compete on the Celebrity Apprentice finale, Poison frontman Bret Michaels headed over to the American Idol season finale. He gave a surprise performance on the competition, but the ones who were most shocked were his doctors.Bret Michaels Ready for Heart Surgery This FallThe Rock of Love star took the stage with his band Poison, belting out their hit single "Every Rose Has Its Thorn." American Idol fans were blown away, particularly when Bret Michaels stepped out with top-three finalist Casey James. Read more »
It‘s finally here. The end to one of the most critically unacclaimed seasons of American Idol. Tonight we‘ll bid a fond farewell to Simon Cowell, the heart, soul and snark of the show, and we‘ll crown the winner of what is arguably the worst seasons in American Idol history.  It‘s a sad state of affairs when goodbye is more exciting than hello, but that‘s exactly where American Idol finds itself tonight. No matter who wins (Lee Dewyze) or how many past contestants parade across the Nokia Stage to sing "Happy Trails" to Simon (countless), there‘s simply no saving season 9.Take a Look Back at Season 9:Crystal vs. Lee: Week-by-Week Comparisons The 25 Worst Performances of Season 9The 25 Best Performances of Season 9The Best of the Rest of Season 9At least there‘s the promise of two hours and seven minutes chock full of former Idols, goofy duets, talented guest stars and the promise of Paula before America unsurprisingly crowns another white guy with a guitar the winner. Of course, we could have a reverse Idol shocker, where the unconventional and undeniable talent beats the everyman with momentum... but even if Crystal Bowersox manages to wrestle the title from Lee and basks in a well-deserved confetti shower, the only OMG faces will be off the Idol stage. The greatest gift us viewers could receive tonight is a shot of the producer‘s trying to figure out how to market a woman who prefers harmonica solos to hit singles.The best part of it all? Once the clock strikes 10:07, we never have to watch season 9 again. So watch along with me live as we say goodbye to Simon Cowell and hello to the next American Idol.  Read more »
Fine, I‘ll say it: this year‘s American Idol finale was underwhelming. I don‘t know what to blame. Is it the way the season progressed this year? Is it the final two and their singer-songwriter backgrounds? (No, I do not begrudge them that.) Is it because, unlike the past two seasons, there isn‘t a real sense of competition? That most of us will be happy whoever wins, unlike before where you were either on, say, Team Cook or Team Archuleta?Whatever it is, it made choosing this week‘s best and worst performances a challenge. I should‘ve seen it coming: we are still looking for a real moment this season, and none of the final six performances had that impact. But they were good (and bad) for completely different reasons. That, or we just stopped caring. Which brings us to the final batch of bests and worsts for the season: Read more »
Last night, in a dramatically close finale, America crowned Lee Dewyze the 9th American Idol. And that was just about the least dramatic thing that happened. Turns out the real drama was happening behind the scenes, on-stage during a particularly awkward (and unfunny) guest performance and in the living rooms across America. Crystal Bowersox: America‘s Suddenly Single Runner-UpDo you have a soft-spot for soulful folk mamas with dreadlocks? Are you okay with dating a touring musician in the limelight? You just might be in luck, because season 9 runner-up Crystal is suddenly single. Turns out the passion in Crystal‘s performance on Tuesday night may have come from fresh heartache, as she and her boyfriend "Big Tony" broke up the morning of the final performance show. (Talk about terrible timing.) Crystal gave Idol host Ryan Seacrest the exclusive this morning on his radio show: Read more »
For the third year in a row, a relatively good-looking white guy who plays the guitar won American Idol. Lee Dewyze followed in the footsteps of Kris Allen and David Cook, and as my colleague Abbey Simmons pointed out, the generic guitarist dude has beaten tween stars, glam rockers and folksy musicians.Read Abbey‘s Full Recap of the Season Finale>>But before this trend of guitarists, the Idol winners were a diverse collection of genres, from pop to R&B to country. So what happened to change the face of American Idol and turn it into The Search for the Next John Mayer?  Read more »
One more American Idol roundup for today. This one features Lee and Crystal‘s next career move, more talk of Simon‘s replacement, and the person we pretty much forgot about (regrettably) during last night‘s finale.  Read more »
If you‘re already suffering from Crystal and Lee withdrawal, you‘re in luck. The American Idol Top 2 stopped by for a visit with Ellen DeGeneres at her day job to talk the Idol finale and perform a song. It‘s clear there are no hard feelings between Crystal and Lee, who spent much of their time on the show showering the other with compliments. After chatting with Ellen, Crystal performed a beautiful rendition of "Up to the Mountain," while Lee wisely avoids his winner‘s single all together and performs "Hallelujah." Watch the videos below. Read more »
It‘s another American Idol roundup, kids, and this time we‘ve got more old material from Idol winner Lee Dewyze, and Bret Michaels stating his case as to why he‘d do well as a judge on the show.  Read more »
Hello, kids, and welcome to tonight‘s American Idol roundup, featuring David Archuleta‘s autobiography, Adam Lambert‘s call for donations and more Bret Michaels talk.  Read more »
One more American Idol roundup, kids, featuring Lee Dewyze still talking about his future album (and a possible Kings of Leon cover!) and -- forgive me for sounding giddy -- Allison Iraheta getting extra star power for her next single.  Read more »
It‘s another American Idol roundup, and it‘s 75% Lee Dewyze. The other 25%? A mix of Crystal Bowersox, Kara DioGuardi and Larry Platt.  Read more »
It may seem like an unusually slow weekend on American Idol, but that‘s because everything‘s on video. Well, almost everything -- I can‘t find a video of Lee Dewyze performing the National Anthem at the NBA Finals earlier just yet. But we‘ve got videos to show you: Simon Cowell, Scott MacIntyre, Lee Dewyze and some clips from Adam Lambert‘s GlamNation tour, all thanks of MJsBigBlog.  Read more »
It‘s another American Idol roundup, featuring Kris Allen‘s battle scars, Carrie Underwood‘s surprise wedding plans, and Michael Sarver‘s upcoming album.  Read more »
Carrie Underwood took home two awards at this year‘s CMT Music Awards, which were held in Nashville earlier.The American Idol winner took home the Video of the Year award for her single "Cowboy Casanova," which was determined via popular vote. She also took home the CMT Performance of the Year award for her performance of "Temporary Home" on the network.  Read more »
If the children are our future, then we‘re screwed.  Today this year‘s Teen Choice Award nominees were announced, and as always, the list features some truly absurd nominees.On the television side, Gossip Girl leads the nominees for a TV Drama despite having a subpar season and coming in as one of the CW‘s lowest-rated shows.  Meanwhile, a great new show like The Vampire Diaries was stuck in categories for Fantasy/Sci Fi shows, which is arguably the most interesting category since it also features Fringe, True Blood, Lost and Supernatural.  Read more »
It‘s the Thursday night American Idol roundup, where we hear about why Ellen DeGeneres hasn‘t quite settled into the show, and Ryan Seacrest‘s possible post-Idol future.  Read more »
It‘s another American Idol roundup, featuring legal tussles, new albums, and the search for the elusive Simon Cowell replacement... if they should still look for it.  Read more »
Hey you, kids, it‘s another American Idol roundup! We‘ll discuss two things tonight, and one of them involves Crystal Bowersox. Read more »
It‘s a quick American Idol roundup for Sunday night, featuring another lawsuit, Didi Benami admitting a couple of things, and a couple of new tracks from David Archuleta.  Read more »
Ryan Seacrest went to Twitter today to announce the audition cities for the tenth season of American Idol -- and then some:  Read more »
Following the announcement of the audition cities for American Idol season 10, a new rule change has been added.  The age requirement for auditions, previously 16-28, has been lowered by one year, so now 15-year-olds will have the chance to become the next American Idol.See Season 10 Audition Cities>>  Read more »
This morning FOX announced its fall and mid-season schedule, complete with  seven new shows and some notable changes to the channel‘s biggest shows. Joining the network will be four new comedies and three new dramas, including Running Wilde, a romantic comedy starring Will Arnett (of Arrested Development) and Keri Russell (of Felicity fame). See More:The CW‘s Fall Lineup>>CBS‘ Fall Lineup>>ABC‘s Fall Lineup>>NBC‘s Fall Lineup>>In spite of the exciting news that Gob Bluth will be returning to FOX, we think the most interesting tidbits that came out of the FOX announcements have to do with the network‘s established shows. American Idol will be getting rid of some of the guest performers and cutting down the results show to 30 minutes, Glee will get the coveted post-Super Bowl slot and there will blessedly not be a fall season of So You Think You Can Dance. Here are the full fall and mid-season schedules from FOX, complete with new show synopses: Read more »
On tonight‘s American Idol roundup, it‘s all about relationships, relationships and, well, relationships -- just in case you didn‘t get the message from the title.  Read more »
Even before Simon Cowell could really leave American Idol, we‘ve seen quite a lot of names floating around as possible replacements. Right now, it seems we‘re all settling for one of those names: Bret Michaels.In an interview with Parade magazine, the Poison frontman (and reality star) admits that he‘s meeting Idol producers in Los Angeles in a couple of weeks. "I don‘t know [if I‘ll be replacing Simon]," he said. "We have a meeting in L.A. in a couple weeks and we‘re going to sit down and talk. They did a poll and I think it was Madonna, P. Diddy, Howard Stern and myself, and I took 50% or 60% of the vote and that‘s tremendous."  Read more »
Paula Abdul‘s parting curse on the soul of American Idol continues to take its toll.Eight shows on the American Idol summer tour, which features the top ten Idols from the ratings-challenged season 9, have been canceled to end the tour early.No official reason has been given by Idol or promoter Live Nation, but it seems even the presence of winner Lee DeWyze, powerhouse Crystal Bowersox and country hunk Casey James haven‘t convinced enough fans to buy tickets to the tour, which kicked off in Auburn Hills, MI last week. Residents of Portland, OR; Omaha, NE; Kansas City, MO; Buffalo, NY; Cleveland, OH; Winnipeg, Manitoba; Toronto, Ontario and Portland, MN will all be left Idol-less this summer, as these tour dates have been canceled.I know what you‘re thinking: We let the Canadians get a real-life glimpse at our AMERICAN Idols? Well, not anymore! Consider it payback for sending us Bieber. Read more »
July 10 was a big day for the celebrity wedding business.American Idol winner Carrie Underwood and NHL player Mike Fisher were married at the Ritz Carlton Reynolds Plantation in Georgia, while across the globe, Office star John Krasinski and Devil Wears Prada actress Emily Blunt tied the knot in Italy.And they weren‘t the only ones: former Bad Boy Martin Lawrence and MTV VJ Lala Vasquez also married their respective sweethearts this Saturday.As for the ceremonies, People reports that Underwood wed "before 250 friends and family in a ceremony featuring classical music and the couple‘s favorite Bible readings." Those friends included her former Idol judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson, according to RadarOnline. Read more »
What‘s an awards show without a pen full of puppies, Sue Sylvester, and still shots of Mother Theresa? Well, I guess that would be probably be the Oscars. And the Grammy‘s. And some other awards show that doesn‘t love puppies. But I don‘t care about those award shows because they don‘t have a trailer like this!  Read more »
Auditions for the 10th season of American Idol are underway, but the singing competition seems to be taking a backseat to the competition to fill the empty seat at the judges‘ table that Simon Cowell vacated at the end of last season.I was rooting for Poison front man and general death-defier Bret Michaels, but according to The Hollywood Reporter, Michaels is definitely out of the running, and singer Chris Isaak is a current contender. While the "Wicked Game" crooner is super-talented and easy on the eyes, I just don‘t feel like he could bring the necessary acerbic critique the show calls for--we can‘t just have a table full of good cops (or Paula Abduls, as I like to call them). Read more »
The judges of American Idol should probably start passing out their resumes. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Nigel Lythgoe--producer and judge on So You Think You Can Dance--is near a deal to return as American Idol‘s executive producer (the same post he held in season 7 when he departed.)  Read more »
A new diva has been added to the ever-expanding list of potential American Idol judges. And it‘s not Sir Elton John. He‘s already accounted for. Read more »
After just one season as a judge, Ellen DeGeneres has announced that she will not return to American Idol next season. In a press release from FOX, Ellen revealed that the show "didn‘t feel like the right fit for me." Read more »
The scramble for the American Idol judges‘ panel is unraveling.With Ellen DeGeneres leaving the show after only one season, reports now suggest that singer and actress Jennifer Lopez will be taking her place.  Read more »
By the time you finish reading this article, the powers that be over at American Idol will probably have another big announcement about who will (or won‘t) have a judge‘s seat this season. The gossip fiends over at TMZ report that Kara DioGuardi has been fired from the show.  Read more »
The internet is ablaze with American Idol news lately. In case you haven‘t noticed, I‘ll go ahead and recap the major headlines (in order of appearance): Read more »
After a few false alarms, it turns out that Jennifer Lopez won‘t be adding "American Idol judge" to her resume. Yet. Zap2it reports that she hasn‘t signed her contract for Season 10, and neither has Steven Tyler. Though Tyler tells People.com that he‘s "probably" going to be joining the show. Meaning I probably won‘t be surprised when it‘s announced before I even finish this post. Read more »
Rumor finally becomes fact: Nigel Lythgoe has signed a two-year deal to return to American Idol as executive producer.Lythgoe, who currently acts as both executive producer and judge of So You Think You Can Dance, will join fellow EPs Simon Fuller, Ken Warwick and Cecile Frot-Coutaz, show representatives told USA Today.  Read more »
If you thought the vampire craze was over, think again. At this year‘s Teen Choice Awards, airing tonight at 8pm on FOX, vampires carried the day with the Twilight series picking up 12 awards and The Vampire Diaries earning 7.  Read more »
All the TV news you need to know in 300 words or less! You‘ll be done before that last sip of your latte.J.Lo OutThe game of musical chairs continues at the American Idol judges‘ table, as it looks like Jenny from the Block won‘t be moving into one of the empty American Idol judges seats, according to a source close to the situation. With Jennifer Lopez out of the picture, does that mean there‘s room for Jessica Simpson at the table? [People] Read more »
Ready to dash through your TV news of the moment in 300 words or less? Away we go!Brian Austin Green Moves into Wisteria LaneDavid Silver, how we‘ve missed you! Brian Austin Green has landed a spot on Desperate Housewives as Bree‘s (Marcia Cross) handyman. He can come fix up our house anytime. And it sounds like there may be a cat fight (cougar fight?) in the not-so-distant future over this hottie, as he also catches the eye of Renee (Vanessa Williams). [Ausiello]   Read more »
Ready for your daily dose of quick TV news in 300 words or less? Sure you are!Steven Tyler Signs Idol Contract ... According to Someone Other Than FOXWe just can‘t seem to get away from the never-ending American Idol judge rumor mill. The newest word on the street this week: Aerosmith lead singer Steven Tyler has finalized negotiations with FOX and is officially on board to be a judge on the 10th season of American Idol--this according to "a very-inside music source." FOX still says, "No comment." We‘ll believe it when we see him at the judges‘ table. [Eonline]Vampire Queen Still Seeking KingTrue Blood‘s Evan Rachel Wood, 22, and rocker Marilyn Manson, 41, have broken off their engagement--again. [People]  Read more »
Got five minutes? Have I got 300 words worth of TV news for you!Michael J. Fox Guest-Stars on The Good WifeI had the biggest crush on Family Ties‘ Alex P. Keaton growing up, so I‘m super-stoked to see my man Michael J. Fox is set to guest-star on an episode of The Good Wife, which returns for its second season on CBS on Sept. 28. Fox will play litigator Simon Canning, who‘s up against Alicia (Julianna Margulies) in a big class action case. According to CBS, Simon is "willing to use anything in court, including symptoms of his neurological condition, to create sympathy for his otherwise unsympathetic client: a giant pharmaceutical company." Fox himself has Parkinson‘s disease. [TV Guide]  Read more »
TV news in 300 delicious words or less ...Kara Wanted Off American IdolDespite her dad‘s sentiments about her disappointment of reportedly being cut loose as an American Idol judge (Fox still hasn‘t commented), Kara DioGuardi apparently has wanted off the show for a while. Read more »
After weeks of negotiations, Jennifer Lopez has agreed to a deal with Fox to serve as a judge on the upcoming season of American Idol. Lopez‘s deal comes only after intense negotiations centered on the singing and acting star‘s contractual demands. With no additional perks reported in the final deal, Lopez will have to console herself with a mere $12 million.  Read more »
Can I interest you in today‘s TV news in 300 words?Is There Anything The Situation Can‘t Do?DWTS and Jersey Shore star Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino has launched a new application for the iPhone. Aptly titled, The Situation, the app has five functions: Workout, GTL Finder, Sound Board and the option to leave The Sitch a message. This is good news for all the aspiring guidos and guidettes out there who are looking for guidance from The Sitch. There is also a game on the app called "The Grenade Dodger." Sweet! I‘ve been looking for an app to help hone my grenade dodging skills. [Radar]  Read more »
Raise your hand if you want to read some quick TV news in 300 words.Idol Judge Drama Almost OverWhat a roller coaster of a year it‘s been for Idol. From the moment Simon announced his departure, rumors of a replacement have swirled out of control. Then to add to the crazy, we found out that Kara and Ellen left Randy all alone at the judges table. This summer, Idol judge speculation became a national pastime. By now the whole judges-roulette thing has really gotten old. That is why it was nice to hear this week that JLo has officially signed on as a judge. But if the suspense over who will fill the other seat is making you ill, I have news for you. We can all put this judge‘s debacle behind us on September 22 when FOX makes their official announcement. Then we can begin tearing down FOX‘s picks. [People]  Read more »
Well there you have it: This. Is. American. Idol. In a bloated, online streamed event, Ryan Seacrest officially announced what we already knew weeks ago. Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez will join Randy Jackson as the official judges for the tenth season of Idol. Anyone who followed the Idol judges drama this past off season were pretty sure that Tyler and Lopez would be the new judges. I guess the big surprise is that they are going back to the three judge format, which really worked out the best. Read more »
Nope, Conan O‘Brien won‘t be able to give back.The Hollywood Reporter states that the comedian and late night host will not be able to appear on Idol Gives Back, the American Idol charity special which will air on April 21, thanks to his former contract with NBC.  Read more »

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