‘American Idol’ notes: new judges, Lauren Alaina, Carrie Underwood, Kelly Clarkson

Posted Tuesday, October 10, 2017 by RODNEY HO/rho@ajc.com on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

Last week, the “American Idol” judges did press in New York as they began their jobs listening to auditions. Lazy reporters inevitably ask them who will be the “Simon Cowell”?

Naturally, nobody is going to be excessively mean. When has a judge been needlessly mean lately anyway? That is so 2003! Heck, even Simon Cowell in 2017 is like a cuddly teddy bear on “America’s Got Talent” compared to his early years on “Idol.”

“The most challenging thing was trying to figure out was how to say ‘no’ to people at first,” Katy Perry said to the New York Daily News. “I don’t think any of us believe in being nasty. What we believe in is being constructive, and giving constructive criticism. Because it doesn’t help anyone, and people are really sensitive, and we understand because we all walked into a room like that at one time in our life.”

Luke Bryan added: “As artists, the thing we have trouble with is interrupting them mid-song. That’s a tough thing to do, because we know that feeling of being up there singing.”

Richie emphasized his music history perspective, Perry touched wants to give constructive criticism, and Bryan said he will be direct with singers when the time is right.

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A CMT film based on Lauren Alaina’s hit single “Road Less Traveled” will debut Friday, November, 10 at 9 p.m.

Alaina – who came in second season 10 – plays Charlotte, a successful songwriter struggling to balance her career and her dream of the perfect wedding. Charlotte returns to her rural hometown of Harmony, Tenn. where she faces her past and reconsiders her future, especially after a chance encounter with her first love, Ray, played by Donny Boaz (Six). Jason Burkey stars as Spencer, Charlotte’s fiancé, and Charlene Tilton (Dallas) is Babs, Charlotte’s eclectic aunt with a passion for wine-making.

The film features several songs from Alaina’s sophomore album “Road Less Traveled,” including her newest single “Doin’ Fine.”

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Over the weekend, Adam Lambert performed at a fundraiser for LBGTQ students at Points Honors Los Angeles. He played “Whadaya Want From Me,” 4 Non Blondes’ “What’s Up” and Queen’s “Somebody to Love.”

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Carrie Underwood gets fierce at the Infinite Energy Arena in Atlanta last year during her “Storyteller” tour. Photo: Robb Cohen Photography & Video/www.RobbsPhotos.com

Carrie Underwood is releasing a concert film based on her most recent “Storytellers” tour. The film will feature her Madison Square Garden set list, opening with “Renegade Runaway” and closing with “Something in the Water.”

It will be released through iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and Qello.

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Kelly Clarkson made the cover of Variety as she promotes her upcoming album “Meaning of Life,” set to be released October 27. It’s the first time she has felt truly unfettered and has gone a more R&B route as indicated by her single “Love So Soft.” And she’s now with Atlantic Records for the first time.

“It’s just the first record I’ve made that I didn’t call my mother, wanting to quit,” Clarkson told Variety. “And I’m not a baby, y’all. I’m strong. There are songs about it! I’m a very powerful, confident woman, but at the same time, you just feel beaten down.”

Surprising to her, the appeal of her current single has been split by gender: “It was down the middle, men and women. By the way, I would have bet the house that it was going to be all women.”

Read the entire story here. 

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“Scorpion” star and season 5 runner up Katharine McPhee will release an album of jazz covers on November 17.

She told EW: “I wanted to do a record people could make out to. It’s the most romantic music in the world. All of the songs tell stories. That’s why I love them so much.”

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Clay Aiken Instagram of the week. (Yes, he has dyed his hair!) He’s posing with Jason Ritter of ABC’s “Kevin (Probably) Saves the World.”

 

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