Idol Chit-Chat
This is your place to discuss all things "American Idol." The performances, the judges, the past contestants — it’s all right here.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

The Idols Come Out to Help Jerry's Kids

“American Idol” will be well represented at the 2010 Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon…

David Archuleta is scheduled to perform, while Ace Young is scheduled to one of the special co-hosts.

The telethon is also slated to include a performance from the Broadway show, “Rock of Ages,” which stars Season 4’s Constantine Maroulis.

The 2010 Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon begins Sunday, September 5th and concludes Monday, September 6th. Check your local listing for start times in your area. You can see it locally on WSAZ...

Carrie to Co-Host CMAs Again

Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley will co-host the Country Music Association Awards for the third year in a row.

The 44th Annual CMA Awards will air on ABC Wednesday, November 10th.

Carrie has won five CMA awards, including three for Female Vocalist of the Year.

Photo Credit: Bob D'Amico/ABC

Judging Candidates Turn to the Media

People interested in sitting at the “Idol” judges table—and fans of possible candidates—are now turning to the media to plead their cases…

This week, the Committee to Put J. Lo on “Idol” released a press release to show its support for Jennifer Lopez. The campaign is led by Dr. Lloyd Landsman, who is J. Lo’s Long Island neighbor. There’s an online petition they plan to send to FOX and an advertising campaign is in the works.

Also this week, the Joel Diamond camp sent out a press release to show the support for him to replace Simon Cowell.

Diamond is a music producer that has produced such monster hits as “I Will Survive” for Gloria Gaynor. He also discovered New Edition and New Kids on the Block.

According to the press release, he won the competition by tallying over 58,000 votes. The release also featured 14 endorsements for Diamond from a varied group of performers including Gaynor, Joe Pesci and David Hasselhoff.

The official announcement should be coming very soon…

Lee Pitches In to Fight Hunger

Reigning American Idol Lee DeWyze returned to Chicago today to show his support for Feeding America's Hunger Action Month.

In a press release, Lee said about the campaign, “I was shocked to learn that more than 49 million Americans live at risk of hunger, including 17 million children. I am so eager to help Feeding America spread the word about the extent of hunger in this country, and to help in any way I can.”

Hunger Action Month is a multi-faceted effort to mobilize the public to end hunger in the United States. The campaign’s major sponsor, The Cheesecake Factory, is sponsoring a contest to go along with the campaign. You can get more details here.

Photo Credit: RCA

Monday, August 23, 2010

Fantasia Speaks Out

In an interview for "Behind the Music," Fantasia admitted she was trying to kill herself when she overdosed on pills.

You can see a preview here. The episode will air tomorrow (Tuesday, the 24th) at 9 p.m. on VH1...

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Is Steven Tyler a Done Deal?

E! Online’s Ted Casablanca reports that Steven Tyler has officially signed a contract to be an “Idol” judge. FOX had no comment on the report.

E! Online also quotes “Idol” Executive Producer Nigel Lythgoe as saying the choice will be announced in the next three weeks…

Lee Sets His Release Date

E! Online reported today that Lee DeWyze’s debut album will hit stores November 16th.

Earlier this month, Lee won the Teen Choice Award for Male Reality/Variety Star. Whether that is a good omen about album sales remains to be seen…

Photo Credit: RCA

Friday, August 13, 2010

The Latest on Fantasia

“The New York Post” reported yesterday that VH1 will stick with its September 19th premiere date for the second season of Fantasia’s reality show, “Fantasia For Real.” The network is reportedly discussing re-editing the premiere to include Fantasia’s overdose.

The second season will concentrate on Fantasia promoting her new album. “Back to Me” is scheduled to be released August 24th.

Fantasia’s reps insist the overdose was accidental, caused by stress created by the divorce scandal she has found herself in the middle of. If you’re interested in all the details of the scandal, has a blow-by-blow recap for you…

Fantasia has been released from the hospital...

Photo Credit: RCA/J Records

Will "Idol" Tell Shania to "Come On Over"?

Another day, another “Idol” judge rumor…

“The New York Post” reported today that “Idol” is looking to talk to Shania Twain.

Shania won rave reviews for her work as an audition judge and mentor last season (I admit. I was impressed as well.), so it’s only natural her name would be mentioned. But she had been ruled out in recent weeks to make room for Jennifer Lopez. But if the diva rumors are true, “Idol” could be giving Shania a second look.

Personally, I would much rather see Shania in a judge’s chair than J-Lo, and I’m not even a Shania fan…

Meanwhile, E! Online reports that the show reached out to Britney Spears and Janet Jackson, but they both passed. Mariah Carey is “still in the mix.” Paula is out because of her exclusive CBS contract and Jessica Simpson wants to do it, but FOX may not want her…


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Some Sad News About Fantasia

Here’s some sad news to report from the world of “Idol”…

Season Three Champ Fantasia Barrino is still in the hospital today after attempting suicide last night.

According to a statement from her rep to, she took a combination of aspirin and a sleep aid after becoming “overwhelmed” by all the attention surrounding her being named as the other woman in a divorce/sex tape scandal.

Paula Cook from North Carolina accused Fantasia of having an affair with her husband, Antwaun, and even making a sex tape with him.

You can hear the 911 call here.

Is J-Lo Out?

Just when it looked like Jennifer Lopez was a done deal, is reporting that J-Lo is out as an “Idol” judge…

According to their source, her “demands got out of hand.”

Meanwhile, Kara DioGuardi’s dad reportedly told a New York TV show that Kara has not talked to “Idol” producers and she heard the rumors about her firing on the Internet like the rest of us.

Stay Tuned to this one…

Photo Credit: Paul Drinkwater/NBC

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Are the Contestants Getting a Mentor?

The “Los Angeles Times” reported yesterday afternoon that legendary music producer Jimmy Iovine will play a “significant role” on “Idol” this season.

What that means is unclear, but the report speculated Iovine would be some sort of mentor to the contestants. Iovine is the chairman of UMG's Interscope Geffen A&M label, the new recording home for the Idols.

I’m thinking that maybe the show is taking steps to end the constant song choice criticism by allowing the respected professional that will be working with the winner to help them along the way. He may also help fill the void left by the departed music director Rickey Minor.

Stay Tuned…

What Will Nigel Do?

Just a little over an hour ago, FOX made it official. Nigel Lythgoe is returning as an executive producer on “American Idol.”

So who does he want as a judge? In an exclusive interview with “Variety” released very early this morning, Nigel says he wants…

Paula Abdul.

The problem is that she is under contract with CBS for a dance show. But Nigel said if there was any way to get her back into the “Idol” fold, they should try and do it.

As for J-Lo and Steven Tyler, Nigel didn’t confirm or deny those names, but he did give his thumbs-up to both of them. The only name he did deny was his own, saying, “You do not follow Sean Connery in the role of James Bond.” In other words, he does not want to be the new Simon Cowell.

And in a contradiction of comments he made earlier this year, Nigel seemed to hint that Randy Jackson would be safe, saying he was the show’s “barnacle.” I have no idea what that means, but I think that means he’s staying.

Nigel also said he wants to move the focus back to the contestants—but on their singing, not their sappy backstories. He would like to use less of those.

Could Nigel, who helped start the decline of the show, now actually be the savior of “American Idol”? This is getting interesting, folks…

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Ryan Star CD Review: Some Things Are Just Worth Waiting For

It was back in February of last year when I watched Ryan Star win over a theater full of David Cook fans. He gave an amazing performance that completely entertained the audience. Then after the show, I sat in the lobby and watched him win over even more fans as he took the time to talk to everyone who came up to him.

Ryan was flying high, thanks to his tour pairing with David and because his new album, “11:59,” was coming out later that fall. But “11:59” never came and I admit I started to get worried for the guy that had won me over as well.

Fast forward to a year later, and thankfully, Ryan is once again flying high. His constant touring is paying off as “Breathe” has become a genuine radio and video hit. And more importantly, “11:59” is finally in stores. And it is well worth the wait…

The CD kicks off with the strongest block of songs I’ve heard on a CD in quite a while. You’re immediately hit with the catchy “oh-ohs” of “Brand New Day,” the theme to “Lie to Me.” But before you can lose your buzz, you get hit with the anthem, “Right Now.” It always makes me want to run a marathon—until I remember I’m not capable of doing that…

Then comes the classic, “Last Train Home,” which is still in heavy rotation on my iPod. How in the world this song wasn’t used in every TV drama coming and going I will never understand. It should’ve been a huge smash. That’s followed by the song that is quickly becoming a smash, “Breathe.” I love a soaring chorus that transports you somewhere else and “Breathe” completely delivers. That’s followed by another of my favorite musical traits, an aching ballad, called “We Might Fall.” The haunting “This Could Be the Year” and the Five For Fighting meets Lifehouse “Unbreak” close out the block.

Ryan hits his first misstep with “Start a Fire” and even it’s not a bad song. The lyrics just ring a little cheesy for me. Ryan returns to his beautifully haunting form with “Losing Your Memory,” which features a bagpipe sound. And “11:59” perfectly closes out the CD with its continuously building melody.

The deluxe version on iTunes contains three solid bonus tracks: the pop-leaning “You and Me,” the slow-building anthem “Gonna Make It Right” and the flat-out rocker, “Back of Your Car.”

When you’re as impatient as I am, you don’t like to wait for anything. But sometimes it takes a while to get something just right. And clearly that’s the case here. If extra time is what Ryan needed to make such a solid CD, then I’m okay with it.

Some things are just worth waiting for…

“11:59” is available in stores and online now…

Photo Credit: Atlantic Records

Will Nigel Pull Double Duty?

Here’s the latest… reported today that FOX has talked to Nigel Lythgoe about pulling double duty as an Executive Producer and judge for “Idol” next season.

FOX, of course, would not confirm the story.

I know that Nigel does a good job as a judge on “So You Think You Can Dance,” but I worry how much manipulation he would attempt since he would also be the Executive Producer. I still have not forgiven him for throwing Syesha Mercado under the bus with his choice of “Hit Me Up” during the Top three episode of Season 7. Yes, I know, it led to one of the best finales ever, but still…

Your thoughts?

"Idol" Changes Labels

The summer of change continues for “American Idol”…

The news became official today that “Idol” is changing record labels. 19 Entertainment and Universal Music Group announced today that they have entered into a multi-year agreement.

According to the official press release, the Idols will be handled by Interscope Geffen A&M. In the release, “Idol” guru Simon Fuller said, “With ‘Idol’ celebrating our 10th season I wanted to inject some new power and weight behind our brand. We have been quietly delivering hits relentlessly for nine seasons and Lucian Grainge (Co-Chief Executive Officer of UMG) and Jimmy Iovine's (Chairman, Interscope Geffen A&M) ambition, commitment, and determination to push the boundaries and go even further with ‘Idol’ was very compelling. It is exciting to have the world's biggest show partnered with the world's biggest music company.”

I still have to believe that Sony’s partnership with Simon Cowell had something to do with this decision. Or perhaps the poor sales of “Idol”-related albums over the past few years made them rethink things as well.

Monday, August 2, 2010

The Latest on the Judges

FOX didn’t make any announcements about “Idol” at TCA Tour today, but Chairman Peter Rice did have some things to say…

According to an article at, Rice said that some of the media speculation about the new judges was accurate and some of it was “wildly inaccurate.” He also didn’t comment on the futures of Randy Jackson or Kara DioGuardi. Or on whether Nigel Lythgoe is continuing as Executive Producer.

Rice did say he tried to talk Ellen DeGeneres into staying…

Meanwhile, Steven Tyler said on the radio show, “Kid Kraddick in the Morning,” that “Idol” was a “work in progress.”


“This beautiful girl from Fox came up to me and made an offer. I honored her offer… and it's just a work in progress. They mentioned it and I listened, and we're on tour, so I gotta give it some time.”

On what kind of judge he would be, he said, “I would be honest to the ones that think they have it, and I would be truthful in the sense that if, to those that have it, they don't have it yet enough. And I would tell them exactly why, as I see it.”

Could he be the second coming of Paula Abdul? Please, please, please?!

Rice said he wanted to have the judges in place by mid-September, when the panel would start participating in the auditions…

Stay Tuned…