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  1. #51
    Rock Stars! bbnbama's Avatar
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    American Idol barely had any country contenders in the beginning, but it has since become a farm team for Nashville labels. The 2005 winner, Carrie Underwood, has already sold nearly 5 million copies of her debut album, Some Hearts, which returns to No. 1 on Billboard's country albums chart this week some 62 weeks after its release.

    Kellie Pickler -- a 2006 finalist -- returns to the Top 10 with Small Town Girl, following her endearing two-day substitution for Barbara Walters on The View. (One of Pickler's Idol competitors, Chris Daughtry, takes the No.1 spot on the Billboard 200, which tracks all genres, with his band's self-titled debut rock album, Daughtry.)

    And there's more: Pickler's sassy "Red High Heels" struts to No. 15 on the country airplay chart. Underwood's new single, "Wasted," leaps to No. 25. Josh Gracin, a second-season finalist, ascends to No. 34 with "I Keep Coming Back," a track from his forthcoming album. Another 2006 American Idol finalist, Bucky Covington, is rolling with "A Different World," which moves to No. 47 in its second week of release.
    Reality is the beginning...not the end....Wallace Stevens

  2. #52
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    Sean Michel Plays All Over Arkansas

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Idol Hopeful Plays All Over Arkansas
    Last Update: 1/29/2007 8:48:07 AM

    Posted By: LaTresha Woodruff

    Watch This Video
    http://www.fox16.com/mediacenter/loc...?videoId=45173

    At this point we don't know how far American Idol contestant Sean Michel makes it in Hollywood, but his star is rising rapidly here in Arkansas. The Bryant resident is playing gigs all over. Sunday night he played at First Baptist Church in Malvern.
    Arkansans were overjoyed to learn that Sean Michel of Bryant made it to American Idol tryouts in Hollywood. Now it seems everyone wants the opportunity to hear him sing.

    "When we found out Sean was on American Idol and made it to Hollywood so that kind of blew things up. We're just really excited," says Beth Dial who attends First Baptist Church.

    Kadeem Manuel says, "I think he's a really good artist and I really do like his music. I just think he can touch a lot of people."

    And that's what Sean Michel wants to do through his music, touch a lot of people and tell them of God's love. And if it happens to make him famous in the process, well that's okay too. But for now, Michel is happy being right here in Arkansas playing at places like First Baptist Church.

    "Our plans are to just keep playing and keep going to as many places as we can and sharing the good news of people that we believe in our hearts about God's love through our music," says Michel.

    Michel's style of Christian rock is also catching on. His fans say they hope the American public will respond as well. "He's a Christian artist in general and so it's like the new thing for American Idol to finally have a Christian artist make it."

    Michel says he is pleasantly surprised by all the support from Arkansans. "I think it's great that they try to rally around an arkansan that's pretty cool. It makes you feel really good."

    American Idol auditions continue Tuesday and Wednesday night on FOX16. Meanwhile, we'll have to wait for the Hollywood audition show to see how far Michel makes it in the competition. We'll all keep our fingers crossed.

    http://www.fox16.com/news/local/stor...829207&rss=315

  3. #53
    FORT Fogey razorbacker's Avatar
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    Jory Steinberg Using 'Idol' For Her Big Comeback
    ______________________________ __________
    USING 'IDOL' FOR HER BIG COMEBACK
    EX-CHILD STAR HAD HIT SINGLE AT AGE15
    By DON KAPLAN
    Jory Steinberg
    January 30, 2007 -- ONE "American Idol" stand-out is actually using the hit show to make a comeback - at age 25.

    Jory Steinberg, the willowy brunette who wowed the judges at last week's New York auditions, is actually a Canadian former child star .

    In 1998, at the tender age of 15, Steinberg signed a whopping seven-album deal with a record label, 143, owned at the time by producer David Foster. She also sang a single, "Try to Say Goodbye," for the soundtrack of the Jennifer Love Hewitt movie, "I Know What You Did Last Summer."

    The single went on to be a double platinum seller in Asia. But due to a management reshuffling at the label, Steinberg's first album was never released and the rest of the deal fell through.

    "Jory, that was terrific," Judge Simon Cowell said at her audition after she had sung a bit of Tina Arena's 1996 hit, "Chains." "Why can't they all be like that?"

    According to her hometown paper, Jory has made the semi-finalist round of 24 as the competition progresses behind closed doors in Hollywood.

    A spokeswoman for the show declined to confirm the report.

    Her audition was far from the first time Steinberg had been asked to perform on the spot.

    At age 10, she was performing as Young Coussette, in the Ottawa production of "Les Miserables" and later reprised the role in Toronto, the closest thing Canada has to Broadway.

    She also frequently performed the Canadian national anthem at sports and political events in Canada, and even sang for the Queen of England once.

    Despite Steinberg's overwhelming resume, Fox officials say "Idol" has no problem with her competing, since she does not have a current recording contract.

    http://www.nypost.com/seven/01302007...don_kaplan.htm

  4. #54
    Rock Stars! bbnbama's Avatar
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    Ready for their shot at fame and fortune
    Posted by the Asbury Park Press on 01/26/07

    BY PATTI MARTIN
    STAFF WRITER

    The Jersey girls are heading to Hollywood.

    On Wednesday's audition episode of "American Idol," best friends Amanda Coluccio of Holmdel and Antonella Barba of Point Pleasant impressed judges enough to receive golden tickets to Hollywood — and the next level of auditions.

    "They made us proud," said Robert Abatemarco, principal of Red Bank Catholic High School, from which the two singers graduated in 2004. "We knew they were talented; now the rest of the world does as well."

    The "best friends forever" auditioned at Continental Airlines Arena in East Rutherford last July. It wasn't until Wednesday night's episode, though, that the general public officially learned the girls' fate.

    A representative for Fox Television said the contestants were unavailable for comment Thursday, and neither of their families could be reached.

    "It's exciting," 17-year-old Tinton Falls resident Tara Calvert, a senior at Red Bank Catholic, said Thursday. "It's pretty much all around school. . . . It's what everyone was talking about."

    During the show, it was Coluccio who first appeared before "Idol" judges Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul and guest judge Carol Bayer Sager. When she mentioned her best friend was waiting outside, the judges asked her to bring in Barba.

    When Jackson asked the young women which one was better, Barba explained Coluccio was classically trained, while her friend said each one had different strengths.

    "That's exactly how the girls are," said George Powers, director of music at RBC. "They would never say a bad word against the other."

    All kinds of music

    Barba was a member of the concert choir during her four years at RBC, Powers said, as well as a member of the school's elite doo-wop group. Both women also were part of his music theory class in their senior year.

    "They are really talented girls who deserve to be where they are," Powers said. "They just both love to sing."

    Both women also were part of Arts from the Heart, a school group that goes out to senior citizen centers and assisted living facilities to perform on a regular basis, explained Stacy Coppola, director of performing arts/dance at RBC.

    "You couldn't ask for better students or best friends," Coppola said. "They were joined at the hip . . . best friends to the end."

    That was more than evident during the show.

    In a clip filmed after the auditions, the women could be seen frolicking in the ocean with a beach ball (Barba loves the beach) and walking down Broad Street in Red Bank, hitting all the stores (Coluccio loves shopping).

    "They were always there for each other . . . and they still are," Abatemarco said. "What you saw on TV is how and who they really are."

    Although the two initially sang a duet, at the recommendation of the judges they also performed separately. Coluccio's version of the Patsy Cline hit "Crazy" received positive feedback from the judges and an unanimous invitation to Hollywood.

    But it was Barba's rendition of Debelah Morgan's "Free" that truly impressed the judges.

    Cowell's comment, "I think you were better than your friend," was seconded by Bayer Sager.

    "I don't think you should ever say, 'Well she's trained and I'm not,' " Abdul said. "You're fantastic."

    Simon being Simon

    Cowell also gave Barba a piece of advice after the Catholic University student pointed out that Coluccio was better than her audition showed: When someone is down on the floor, you kick them.

    "I'd never do that to my best friend," Barba said, walking off the audition floor.

    "That's exactly who Antonella is," Powers said. "She would never do anything to a friend, and especially to Amanda. She's a performer and she wants to do her best. She never turns down a challenge, but she's going to do it on her own terms.

    Abatemarco, Powers and Coppola are proud of their former students' success, "but we were proud of them while they were here, too," Abatemarco said.

    "I would say to the girls, "Draw no comparisons,' " Powers said. "Continue to make us proud and do what we know you're capable of doing."
    Reality is the beginning...not the end....Wallace Stevens

  5. #55
    Rock Stars! bbnbama's Avatar
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    Bless his heart...he is never going to be a Taylor lover!

    "American Idol" judge Simon Cowell weighs in on season six, Taylor Hicks and Jennifer Hudson!

    This week, "American Idol" features auditions from Birmingham, AL, on Tuesday at 8 p.m. on FOX and from Los Angeles, CA, on Wednesday at 9 p.m. But first, ET caught up with "Idol" judge SIMON COWELL to get his take on the sixth season and more!

    ET: Can you talk about the overall talent this year?

    SIMON COWELL: To me it smacks a little bit of season one where you can't spot an obvious one, so it could be a dark horse who's going to win, but I prefer that. When someone like CARRIE UNDERWOOD walks in you just go, "Okay, fine. She's won," and it's not that interesting. I think it's going to be more like the first season.

    ET: Are there any standouts?

    SIMON COWELL: There are three or four people. At the end of the day, we only need one.

    ET: Do you have any idea if the overall criticism is worse this year?

    SIMON COWELL: What I love about this show is it is politically incorrect. I think, thank God, most people in the world are politically incorrect. And I'm all for that, because otherwise, we're going to live in a very dull world, you know. If people don't like it, they don't have to watch it, but, luckily, I think people take it like I do, with a pinch of salt. They've got a sense of humor.

    ET: You stood up for PAULA ABDUL today when reporters were criticizing her. What made you take the hit on her this time?

    SIMON COWELL: I felt bad for her. It felt a little bit like mob mentality on Paula, watching it from afar and I thought, "It's gone a bit too far." She can be wacky; I can be wacky. It's one of the reasons why I actually do enjoy working with her. I did think about what happened last year, where everyone on the Internet was saying what is this rubbish she's talking about and I just felt it was the appropriate time to say actually, that wasn't it.

    ET: Can I ask you about TAYLOR HICKS? You didn't think he had a chance, and he wasn't even voted into the bottom three the entire season. Has that changed your opinion about what Americans think of "American Idol"?

    SIMON COWELL: I still say Taylor Hicks was not THE best singer on "American Idol 5." I think he was the most popular, and at the end of the day, record sales will prove me right or prove me wrong. I think he was more popular as a person, and I think there were better singers, and I still stand by that.

    ET: Do you know if the producers are trying to get JENNIFER HUDSON on this year?

    SIMON COWELL: That's a very good question. Actually, they should do it. She should come back, 100 percent.

    ET: Do you think she would?

    SIMON COWELL: She should come back and gloat. Why not?

    ET: Are you prepared for what she might say to you?

    SIMON COWELL: You know, I was thinking about that and I think some of the negative comments have been picked up on. You've got to remember that I was one of her main supporters at the beginning. If it hadn't have been for "Idol," she wouldn't have been picked to do 'Dreamgirls.' The public voted her off, not me.

    ET: The public are influenced by the judges.

    SIMON COWELL: They're obviously not, because Taylor Hicks won last year.

    ET: You were pretty negative on her.

    SIMON COWELL: I was some weeks. I think on balance, I was nice and harsh. I don't think she was good enough to win the year that she [was on], and I don't think one person watching the show could have predicted that she was going to win an Oscar® three years later. [Note: She hasn't yet, but she has been nominated.] You've got to remember, at the end of the competition, no managers came along. She was dropped from her management contract; no record labels came along. The fact was, the right producer was watching at the right time and she got a chance in a million and made the most of it, but it wouldn't have happened without "Idol."

    ET: Have you seen the movie yet?

    SIMON COWELL: No. No.

    ET: Do you want to?

    SIMON COWELL: Yeah.

    ET: Simon, is there any particular online criticism, message boards about "American Idol" that you read?

    SIMON COWELL: No. You know what? I learned after the first season, I went on the boards once and I was horrified. I've never gone back on them again.

    Link Here
    Reality is the beginning...not the end....Wallace Stevens

  6. #56
    Rock Stars! bbnbama's Avatar
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    Not much new information but it does corroborate with her story! And no, I didn't go out searching for her backstory...someone else did and I'm just passing it along...!

    Link Here

    Police: Man shoots wife, himself
    Miranda Baines
    Staff Writer
    Sunday, February 26, 2006

    A Reidsville man shot his wife, then turned the gun on himself early Saturday morning, according to police.
    A press release from the Reidsville Police Department states that officers responded to a domestic disturbance about 1:30 a.m. Saturday at 2226 S. Scales St., after a concerned caller requested police check on a woman who lives there.

    The release states that North Carolina Highway Patrolman R.W. Hamilton, who was the first to arrive on scene, observed a muzzle flash from several shots fired inside the home as he pulled into the driveway.

    Shortly thereafter, several Reidsville officers arrived on the scene and Beverly Emory Ward, of the residence, told them her husband had shot her.

    According to the release, Ward's husband, James Woodrow Ward, was found inside the house with gunshot wounds. After being treated on the scene by EMS, both were transported to area hospitals.

    At press time, James Ward was in critical condition, according to a Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center spokesperson. Beverly Ward's condition was not available at press time.

    Reidsville Police Capt. Guilio Dattero said no charges have been filed at this point, but police believe James Ward shot his wife and then shot himself.

    Dattero added police plan to continue the investigation once Ward and his wife are in stable condition.

    Police urge anyone who has further information regarding this investigation to contact Detective James Anderson at 347-2341 or Crimestoppers at 349-9683.
    Reality is the beginning...not the end....Wallace Stevens

  7. #57
    Leo
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    This isn't really much of an article, but here goes: apparently some of the rejects from last week (including the one Simon called a bush baby) are in Miami for the Super Bowl (covering it for Jimmy Kimmel). They've got a few photos as part of the Media Day photo gallery here.

    Well, at least they got something out of their 15 minutes of fame.

  8. #58
    Rock Stars! bbnbama's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leo;2221765;
    This isn't really much of an article, but here goes: apparently some of the rejects from last week (including the one Simon called a bush baby) are in Miami for the Super Bowl (covering it for Jimmy Kimmel). They've got a few photos as part of the Media Day photo gallery here.

    Well, at least they got something out of their 15 minutes of fame.
    Bless their hearts...I hope they are having a good time!!
    Reality is the beginning...not the end....Wallace Stevens

  9. #59
    FORT Fogey BoBoFan's Avatar
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    Sounds like someone else feels the same way I do.
    Well said Dave McGurgan!

    http://www.phillyburbs.com/pb-dyn/ne...7-1291807.html

    American Idol: Birmingham hillbillies hellacious

    By DAVE McGURGAN
    phillyBurbs.com

    With Tuesday’s Birmingham auditions, American Idol has once again proved that hillbillies are the scariest people on the planet.

    These are the people whose idea of a big night out on the town is getting lost in a cornfield. These are people who think that Wal-Mart is a great store. These are the people who voted for George Bush.

    I don’t know about you, but I’m scared.

    It didn’t seem likely that Idol could find another blonde bimbo contestant as vapid, socially inept and absurd as Kellie Pickler, but they managed to do just that with Jamie Lynn Ward. Ward, who gives dumb blondes a bad name, turned in an audition that was less of a singing showcase and more of an urgent plea for therapy.

    Wearing the tightest shirt imaginable with “Blue Eyed Bombshell” written across her chest, Ward seemed genuinely mentally ill as she recited her well rehearsed hard luck family story.

    She told the judges confusing story about her paralyzed pappy who permanently injured himself and his old lady during an old-fashioned disagreement settled hillbilly style; with a gun. She says she’s only 17, but Ward looks more like 27 and with her buggy eyes and alien face, Ward makes the Runaway Bride look do-able.

    As for her singing, it was just OK and she’s a longshot to make the final 12. Which is fine, because if Ward doesn’t become the next American Idol, she can be a spokesperson for the NRA.

    And speaking of flaky chicks, what’s up with Paula Abdul? You know the American Idol auditions have become tedious when she can’t even be bothered to show up on one of two scheduled work days. And on the day she did show up, Abdul seemed like she had inhaled plenty of “happy smoke.”

    No wonder producers are allegedly thinking of replacing Abdul with Courtney Love. At this point, Abdul makes Love seem like TIME’s Person of the Year.

    The end of the auditions and the beginning of the actual competition can’t come soon enough. The warbling wanna-be’s and the deluded divas are tired. It’s about time Idol fled Hillbillyland and went back to Hollywood to get the show started already.

  10. #60
    FORT Fogey Tigerusty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoBoFan;2221921;
    Sounds like someone else feels the same way I do.
    Well said Dave McGurgan!

    http://www.phillyburbs.com/pb-dyn/ne...7-1291807.html

    American Idol: Birmingham hillbillies hellacious

    By DAVE McGURGAN
    phillyBurbs.com

    With Tuesday’s Birmingham auditions, American Idol has once again proved that hillbillies are the scariest people on the planet.

    These are the people whose idea of a big night out on the town is getting lost in a cornfield. These are people who think that Wal-Mart is a great store. These are the people who voted for George Bush.

    I don’t know about you, but I’m scared.

    It didn’t seem likely that Idol could find another blonde bimbo contestant as vapid, socially inept and absurd as Kellie Pickler, but they managed to do just that with Jamie Lynn Ward. Ward, who gives dumb blondes a bad name, turned in an audition that was less of a singing showcase and more of an urgent plea for therapy.

    Wearing the tightest shirt imaginable with “Blue Eyed Bombshell” written across her chest, Ward seemed genuinely mentally ill as she recited her well rehearsed hard luck family story.

    She told the judges confusing story about her paralyzed pappy who permanently injured himself and his old lady during an old-fashioned disagreement settled hillbilly style; with a gun. She says she’s only 17, but Ward looks more like 27 and with her buggy eyes and alien face, Ward makes the Runaway Bride look do-able.

    As for her singing, it was just OK and she’s a longshot to make the final 12. Which is fine, because if Ward doesn’t become the next American Idol, she can be a spokesperson for the NRA.

    And speaking of flaky chicks, what’s up with Paula Abdul? You know the American Idol auditions have become tedious when she can’t even be bothered to show up on one of two scheduled work days. And on the day she did show up, Abdul seemed like she had inhaled plenty of “happy smoke.”

    No wonder producers are allegedly thinking of replacing Abdul with Courtney Love. At this point, Abdul makes Love seem like TIME’s Person of the Year.

    The end of the auditions and the beginning of the actual competition can’t come soon enough. The warbling wanna-be’s and the deluded divas are tired. It’s about time Idol fled Hillbillyland and went back to Hollywood to get the show started already.
    Man I think that is an awful and bigoted article. Obvioulsy not a Kellie fan but to each his own. I don't know about his taste in women either, because Jamie is one gorgeous 17 year old.
    "So, what is fame? It's lightening that strikes some people. It's lightening that some people seek." Jewel

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