Life after ‘American Idol’: Paula Abdul, Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson, Sundance Head

This was posted Friday, November 18, 2016 on the AJC Radio & TV Talk blog by Rodney Ho

Paula Abdul is touring with New Kids on the Block and Boyz II Men in the “Total Package” tour, bringing back many of the greatest pop hits of the late 1980s and early 1990s..

This is Abdul’s first tour in 25 years and will hit 40 cities next year, including Infinite Energy Center in Duluth on July 14. Pre-sale has started with tickets for the general public going on sale Saturday, November 19. Check for tickets here.  Prices range from $39.50 to $249.50.

Abdul, if you recall, had several major hits back in the day including “Straight Up,” “Coldhearted,” “Rush Rush,” “Opposites Attract,” “The Way That You Love Me” and “Forever Your Girl.”

She judged “Idol” for eight seasons and is now a judge on “So You Think You Can Dance.”

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THE VOICE -- "Live Top 12" Episode: 1114A -- Pictured: Sundance Head -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

THE VOICE — “Live Top 12” Episode: 1114A — Pictured: Sundance Head — (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

Sundance Head had another solid week on “The Voice,” cruising into the top 11.

The former “Idol” semifinalist performed a spiritually bracing “My Church,” originally sung by Maren Morris. He received plenty of praise and came in fifth out of 12 in iTunes sales. He came in sixth out of 12 among MJ’s Big Blog viewers.

Sa’Rayah was cut.

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Carrie Underwood surprised Crystal Gayle with an invite to join the Grand Ol’ Opry. What? She isn’t in already?

Gayle will be formally inducted January 21, 2017 by her sister Loretta Lynn, already a long-time Opry member.

Underwood, who joined the Opry in 2008, came on stage to duet with Gayle on Gayle’s hit “Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue.”

The criteria to get into the Opry isn’t cut and dried. Here’s what they write on their website:

The Opry doesn’t simply pass out invitations to the biggest stars with the most hits. Opry management looks for a musical and a generational balance. Opry membership requires a passion for country music’s fans, a connection to the music’s history, and it requires commitment – even a willingness to make significant sacrifices to uphold that commitment. Often, the Opry seeks out those who seek out the Opry, though decisions aren’t based on which artists appear most on the show, either.

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Kelly Clarkson’s latest single “Its Quiet Uptown” was recorded while she was pregnant with her second child. And you know she had an extremely difficult pregnancy:

The “Hamilton Mix Tape” album features songs from Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hit musical recorded by artists such as Clarkson, Sia, The Roots, Usher, Queen Latifah, Alicia Keys, John Legend and others.

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Jennifer Hudson is prepping for “Hairspray Live!” It airs live December 7 and is directed by Atlanta’s Kenny Leon. She plays Motormouth Maybelle, the role Queen Latifah played in the 2007 film. And she gets to work with formerJ “Idol” music director Michael Orland.

Now I'm on the keys ! @michaelorland #hairspraylive

A photo posted by Jennifer Hudson (@iamjhud) on

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Kris Allen
Season 8 winner Kris Allen has released his first Christmas album “Somethin’ About Christmas.”

According to Billboard magazine:

Allen has written several original Christmas songs for a cool yule, including “Christmas Morning,” “Just Like Snow” and the adorable ditty that questions how Santa can be at the mall and the grocery store at the same time, “Mommy, Is There More Than One Santa Claus?”
The album also features holiday favorites “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” “Jingle Bells” (featuring The Voice alum Caroline Glaser), “Winter Wonderland” (featuring Jillian Edwards) and “Silent Night.”

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