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American Idols, Where Are They Now?

April 10th, 2014 9:00pm EDT
kelly clarkson
Once known as the show that could instantly make you a star, "American Idol" has suffered lackluster ratings and has had as many "Idols" fail as succeed. Still, the winners that America voted for have not always stayed within the realm of music, some have spread their wings to the acting world as well. Some of the more popular winners are still in the spotlight, some have faded into obscurity, Here is the latest on what many of your favorite "American Idol" winners have been up to since winning.

Kelly Clarkson

Season 1

Undoubtedly the most popular and best-known of all the "American Idol...
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Review: Ruben Studdard Is In Excellent Voice On 'Unconditional Love'

February 7th, 2014 10:54am EST
ruben studdard unconditional love
On February 4th, R&B artist Ruben Studdard released his sixth album, Unconditional Love. It is hard to believe that the “Velvet Teddy Bear” has released six albums. Unless you’re an avid Studdard follower, you are likely in the dark about many of Studdard’s albums given their underrated, quiet release. Studdard’s career went “south” commercially following gold-selling gospel album, I Need An Angel. On Unconditional Love, the perception given from Studdard – newly signed to Verve – is that he just wants to make music. An album where the majority of songs are covers, Unconditional Love isn...
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Ruben Studdard To Compete On 'Biggest Loser'

July 1st, 2013 3:33pm EDT
Ruben Studdard
American Idol Season 2 winner Ruben Studdard will try to win another reality competition - this time to lose weight.

Studdard is set to join The Biggest Loser in an attempt to lose some weight from his large frame. Studdard was nicknamed "Velvet Teddy Bear" during his time on the show and was around 400 pounds the last time he attempted to lose weight.

In 2006, Ruben lost about 100 pounds thanks to a diet from Duke University. He then attempted to slim down again when he married Surata Zuri McCants, but he put some of it back on when he divorced her in 2012.

Ruben told People at the time...
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Phillip Phillips' Debut Rocks Download Charts

May 31st, 2012 11:03am EDT
Phillip Phillips
American Idol Phillip Phillips' debut Home sold 278,000 digital copies, despite the finale of the competition being the least-viewed in the show's history. It's the best debut for an American Idol winner since Ruben Studdard 286,000 copies of Flying Without Wings in 2002.

Phillips first week outsold last year's winner Scotty McReery and his song I Love You This Big's first week by 100,000 copies.

Clay Aiken still holds the top spot for an American idol contender, as he sold 393,000 copies of This Is the Night despite coming in second to Studdard.

Carly Rae Jepsen's Call Me Maybe sold 301...
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Phillip Phillips Continues Worrying Trend Of 'White Guy With Guitar' Winners For 'American Idol'

May 24th, 2012 4:07pm EDT
Phillip Phillips
Nothing against Phillip Phillips, who surely has some talent, but his win is the latest in a line of what fans have coined "White Guys with Guitars," or "WGWG." With ratings and record sales getting lower, can American Idol do anything to curb the trend?

Since the music competition allowed contestants to play instruments while singing, the show has seen David Cook, Kris Allen, Lee DeWyze, Scotty McCreery, and Phillip Phillips take the prize over a more varied and (arguably) talented field. McCreery is a bit different, slanting towards crooning country instead of the light pop the rest of t...
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Ruben Studdard Gets Lucky In Divorce Settlement

April 9th, 2012 8:56am EDT
Ruben Studdard
Former "American Idol" winner Ruben Studdard has lost nothing in his bitter divorce battle with ex-wife Surata thanks to an iron-clad prenuptial agreement.

The singer filed for divorce in November, ending his three-year marriage, and he became officially single again in January.

And now the financial and property aspects relating to the split have been decided - and Studdard gets to keep the couple's home, his cash, jewelry and property, according to legal papers obtained by TMZ.com.

His ex-wife drives off in a BMW gift from her husband, the wedding dress she wore when they exchanged vow...
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Ruben Studdard Facing Another New Tax Bill

March 5th, 2012 8:18am EST
Ruben Studdard
Singer Ruben Studdard has been hit with a new U.S. tax bill for outstanding debts from 2009.

The former American Idol champion and his estranged wife Surata Zuri McCants allegedly owe $180,216.73 in federal taxes to the Internal Revenue Service, according to TMZ.com.

It's the second time Studdard has faced tax trouble - he had a property lien filed against him in 2008 after failing to settle a $200,000 bill dating back to 2003.

He filed for divorce from McCants in November.
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'American Idol' Star Ruben Studdard Files For Divorce

November 17th, 2011 9:19am EST
Ruben Studdard
Singer Ruben Studdard has filed for divorce from his wife of three years.

The former American Idol champion has cited "irreconcilable differences" as the reason for the split in papers filed in his native Alabama, according to TMZ.com.

Studdard and his wife Surata Zuri McCants wed in 2008.
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'American Idol' Recap: Was This The Most Boring Finale Ever?

May 25th, 2011 9:35am EDT
Lauren Alaina and Scotty McCreery
The most boring finalists ever. That seemed to be the conventional wisdom going into the evening. That, despite a strong start, this season of ‘Idol’ was destined to fall into oblivion with two dull finalists that wouldn’t be able to deliver the finale this Renaissance season deserved.

Yes, that might be true. It may have been more interesting to see James square off against Pia or Jacob take on Haley, but that doesn’t necessarily mean this is the most boring collection of contestants ever, does it?

Here’s a ranking of finale pairings from least boring to most boring:

9 (Least Boring): S...
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'American Idol' Recap: Usher, Diddy, Ruben & Sam Worthington Bid Didi Farewell + Power Rankings

April 1st, 2010 8:47am EDT
DiDi on American Idol
Even the Gods, it seems, couldn’t have saved Didi after that performance last week. And certainly not the judges.

“American Idol” is always a study in product placement synergy, but tonight it went a little over the top. It seemed the first half of the show was simply a commercial for “Clash of the Titans”. It seemed that way because that’s all it was. So much so that the producers decided to forego the group number. Maybe over-commercialization isn’t such a bad thing.

Last night was also the last night for Didi. Admittedly, Didi was so forgettable that I really don’t have a whole lo...
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'Idol' All-Stars Take Over - Tonight At 8 On Fuse

January 11th, 2010 2:30pm EST
American Idol, bikini girl, Katrina Darrell, Kara Dioguardi
Get ready for the new season of American Idol with some behind-the-scenes info on some of your favorite idols from the past. Fuse is featuring a TV marathon of some of "American Idol's" biggest success stories tonight at 8PM/7C, including an exclusive interview with last season's runner-up, Adam Lambert.

"American Idol" will return tomorrow night on Fox with a two-night, four-hour premiere featuring auditions in Boston and Atlanta. Auditions for the ninth season of the popular singing competition will also be held in Chicago, Orlando, Dallas, Los Angeles and Denver.

The show is featur...
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'American Idol' Needs a Revamp... Now!

August 10th, 2009 11:11am EDT
American Idol
With the recent news that Paula Abdul will not be returning for American Idol's ninth season, the timing seems perfect for the show to reinvent itself, and recapture the magic that has been steadily dwindling since it premiered nearly a decade ago. Though ratings remain high, viewership is decreasing, a problem that the show tried to address by adding a new judge at the start of the eighth season. Unfortunately, what "American Idol" needs is not a mere shuffling of parts, or replacement of personality. The show needs to restructure its format, and realize that the problem is an over-saturat...
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'American Idol' Power Rankings: Week 2

March 27th, 2009 8:17am EDT
American Idol
This week it was revealed that the American Idol wannabes lip-synch their group numbers. I'd never really noticed that before, but tonight it was all I could think about as they sang a Motown medley and looked like fleeing civilians in a "Godzilla" movie. How did it take us this long to unmask this conspiracy?

Of course, there was also a lot of real singing this evening. First it was Ruben Studdard who looked like a bathroom attendant at a five star restaurant and sang a song that I'm pretty sure is called "Every R&B Song Ever Written". At least he gave Jimmy Fallon solace in knowi...
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Ruben Studdard Is Back With New Single, 'Together'

February 19th, 2009 8:20pm EST
Ruben Studdard
American icon Ruben Studdard is back with the release of "Together," his first single since 2006. The soulful and deeply romantic "Together," premiering on AOL Music today, will be available via digital retail on March 17.

Hailing from Birmingham, Studdard rose to fame as winner of the second season of American Idol. Since then, he has released three studio albums, has won Billboards's Top R&B Single Sales Award for "Superstar," and received a Grammy® Award nomination in 2003 for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance for that song, alongside his idol Luther Vandross.

Studdard is on tou...
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'American Idol' Report Card

February 2nd, 2009 2:18pm EST
American Idol
The "American Idol" auditions are over, and we're that much closer to finding out which Hollywood hopefuls will make it to the Top 36 and get the chance to perform for a shot at the Top 12. But before this year's graduating class of performers is picked, we'd like to take a look back at the past seven seasons of the show and see which Idols (and runners up) have had the most success on and off the AI stage.

Recap of Winners

Season 1 - Kelly Clarkson (winner), Justin Guarini (runner-up)

Season 2 - Ruben Studdard (winner), Clay Aiken (runner-up)

Season 3 - Fantasia Barrino (wi...
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Our Favorite Reality Shows

June 17th, 2008 8:30am EDT
America
Even though we might not always admit it, we love reality television. It's hard not to because reality TV brings viewers entertaining and shocking moments, leaving viewers wanting more.

Followig is a look at some of the most popular reality shows that people can't help but watch week after week:

American Idol

"American Idol" made its Fox debut on June 11, 2002, and has now become one of the most popular shows on American television. The show originated from the 2001 British reality program "Pop Idol." The show has given us talented singers like Kelly Clarkson, David Cook, Carri...
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Seven Ways To Fix 'American Idol'

May 19th, 2008 8:47am EDT
American Idol
Lopping off 30 minutes is a start, but isn't nearly enough. At FOX's up-fronts last week, the network's executives made the startling announcement that "American Idol's" results show will be limited to a half-hour next season. A great cheer rose up from "Idol" nation at the news, as this will surely limit the time for ex-contestants pretending to have music careers on the nation's biggest show.

Of course, this news was met with a drop of cynicism. Lisa de Moraes of The Washington Post wrote that FOX's announcement of the time reduction was simply the executives' "way of reminding us ...
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Karaoke & Cheesy Performances Prevailed On 'American Idol' This Week

February 21st, 2008 10:50am EST
American Idol
"Too cheesy," "not relevant," "extremely cabaret" and "terrible vocals" were common criticisms heard from the south end of the judging table this past week on "American Idol." Aside from Paula Abdul's over-the-top compliments and Randy Jackson's on-the-fence opinions, Simon Cowell's take on week one completely highlighted the show.

This year, it seems that Simon is determined to find the right singer to advance into the music industry. And why shouldn't he? A professional needs to be able to handle the rigmarole of the music industry. But often times, Simon loses his focus. Just h...
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Why Do Some 'American Idol' Stars Succeed While Others Disappear?

January 29th, 2008 9:56am EST
American Idol
Did you ever notice how some contestants who win American Idol seem to fall off the face of the planet after the season is over? Then there are other "Idol" winners who become huge successes. So why does this happen?

There's no doubt about it, Carrie Underwood and Kelly Clarkson are not only beautiful but extremely talented. Carrie Underwood covered Heart's "Alone" during one of the "Idol" episodes, and it was such an amazing performance that Simon Cowell said to her, "I'm going to make a prediction: you are not only to win this competition, but you're going to sell millions of records...
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Past 'American Idol' Winners: Where Are They Now?

January 14th, 2008 12:09pm EST
Fantasia Barrino
Every Tuesday and Wednesday, avid American Idol fans are glued to their TV sets, watching in anticipation and with hope that the contestants they fell in love with are not sent home.

Every season of the singing competition brings heartache and joy, laughter and tears. And each year this popular show produces America's newest singing talent. Several have reached stardom faster than they can say "I'm the next American Idol," while others have strayed away from the spotlight.

Aside from Kelly Clarkson's and Carrie Underwood's rise to fame, what happened to those other winners w...
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Celebrity Birthdays, September 12

September 12th, 2007 3:00am EDT
Neil Peart
Happy Birthday to "Phantom of the Opera" actress Emmy Rossum (1986), "The O.C." actor Benjamin McKenzie (1978), "American Idol" winner Ruben Studdard (1978), "Into the Blue" actor Paul Walker (1973), Primus guitarist Larry LaLonde (1968), musician Ben Folds (1966), Fishbone bassist John Norwood Fisher (1965), actress Amy Yasbeck (1963), French singer Mylene Farmer (1961), British actress Rachel Ward (1957), XTC keyboardist Barry Andrews (1956), "Bosom Buddies" actor Peter Scolari (1954), America co-founder Gerry Beckley (1952), author and Rush drummer Neil Peart (1952), "The Matrix" actor J...
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Celebrity Birthdays, September 12

September 12th, 2007 3:00am EDT
Neil Peart
Happy Birthday to "Phantom of the Opera" actress Emmy Rossum (1986), "The O.C." actor Benjamin McKenzie (1978), "American Idol" winner Ruben Studdard (1978), "Into the Blue" actor Paul Walker (1973), Primus guitarist Larry LaLonde (1968), musician Ben Folds (1966), Fishbone bassist John Norwood Fisher (1965), actress Amy Yasbeck (1963), French singer Mylene Farmer (1961), British actress Rachel Ward (1957), XTC keyboardist Barry Andrews (1956), "Bosom Buddies" actor Peter Scolari (1954), America co-founder Gerry Beckley (1952), author and Rush drummer Neil Peart (1952), "The Matrix" actor J...
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Check Out Johnta Austin's New Single, 'Video,' From His Debut Album, In Stores Sept. 4

August 14th, 2007 8:00pm EDT
Johnta Austin
His name is already familiar to record buyers who make note of the songwriting credits on major hit records by such superstar artists as Mariah Carey and Mary J. Blige. Music industry insiders know him as the Grammy-winning 'go-to' writer which is why the legendary Whitney Houston, Oscar winner Jennifer Hudson, global multi-platinum artist Usher and hitmaker Chris Brown have tracks on forthcoming projects by this unassuming Atlanta native. While he may have spent the last eight years behind the scenes, penning songs for the likes of Toni Braxton, Tyrese, Enrique Iglesias, Ginuwine, Aaliyah,...
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Starbucks Entertainment and Concord Records Co-Release Ella Fitzgerald CD, "Love Letters From Ella"

August 8th, 2007 7:00pm EDT
Ella Fitzgerald
SEATTLE and LOS ANGELES; - To celebrate what would have been Ella Fitzgerald's 90th birthday, Starbucks Entertainment and Concord Records are co-releasing Love Letters From Ella, a collection of never-before-released love songs. Recorded with some of her favorite collaborators, including Count Basie and his Orchestra, Joe Pass, and André Previn, "Love Letters From Ella" also pairs the singer with The London Symphony Orchestra for the first time. The CD will be available at Starbucks Company-operated locations in the U.S. and Canada and traditional music retail beginning on July 31, 2007.

...
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Johnta Austin To Release Debut Album, 'Ocean Drive,' September 4

July 4th, 2007 4:00pm EDT
Johnta Austin
(New York, NY) - As the singular most successful songwriter at work today-– whose tunes have been brought to the top of the charts by Mariah Carey, Mary J. Blige, and at least 50 more artists over the last decade, including Whitney Houston, Jennifer Hudson, Jessica Simpson, Usher, Chris Brown, Toni Braxton, Tyrese, Enrique Iglesias, Aaliyah, Faith Evans, B2K, Ciara, Ruben Studdard, Fantasia, and Mario – what do you deliver for an encore, after winning the Best R&B Song Grammy Award for the past two consecutive years?

In the case of 26-year old Atlanta native Johnta (pronounced "John-...
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'Kimberley Locke & Idol Friends' Charity Auction Begins May 21

May 15th, 2007 9:56am EDT
Kimberley Locke
In the name of charity, American Idol finalist Kimberley Locke and the Clothes Off Our Back Foundation have partnered to auction off clothing and accessories worn by America's favorite Idol contestants and participants. The "Kimberley Locke & Idol Friends" online charity auction will begin Monday, May 21 at clothesoffourback.org.

Bidding begins at 9:00 AM ET on favorite wardrobe pieces of this season's Top 12 finalists (Melinda Doolittle, Stephanie Edwards, Gina Glocksen, LaKisha Jones, Blake Lewis, Sanjaya Malakar, Chris Richardson, Brandon Rogers, Haley Scarnato, Chris Sligh, Jordin ...
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Kimberley Locke Set To Release 'Based On A True Story'; Win A Copy

April 17th, 2007 7:30pm EDT
Kimberley Locke
Thankful and happy are the most descriptive adjectives representing the heart, soul and spirit of a woman known to the world as Kimberley Locke. Once a small town girl with big time dreams, the Gallatin, Tennessee native has evolved into a talented singer, songwriter and business woman exemplifying confidence, passion and determination to persevere through any obstacle placed in her path. The former American Idol, season two contestant showcases all of her raw emotions, character and journey to now on her sophomore Curb Records release, Based On A True Story.

Taking calculated risks, e...
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Stars Pay Tribute to Aretha Franklin

January 12th, 2007 11:15am EST
Aretha Franklin
This year’s United Negro College Fund’s (UNCF) "An Evening of Stars Tribute to Aretha Franklin" (AEOS) kicks off Black History Month with national broadcasts. The program marks the first time in 28 years a woman has been honored for her longstanding and generous support of UNCF’s mission to provide deserving students with access to higher education and scholarship support. Additionally, Franklin is also respected for her well-known activism and philanthropy on behalf of numerous other causes.

The program features stellar performances by some of Hollywood’s biggest stars including rec...
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2006: Year In Music (Pt. 4)

December 31st, 2006 3:00pm EST
The Darkness
In October, Justin Hawkins, lead singer of The Darkness, announced that he's leaving the band because he can't live the rock 'n' roll lifestyle again after completing rehab... Weird Al Yankovic's White & Nerdy becomes the parody singer's first ever top-ten hit... and legendary NYC nightclub CBGB, where bands like the Ramones, Talking Heads and Blondie got their start, closed; Patti Smith was the final act... Beck took things to the next level by releasing his latest album, The Information with sets of stickers so fans could create their own cover art; however, the revolutionary move prompte...
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2006: Year In Music (Pt. 2)

December 31st, 2006 1:00pm EST
Billy Corgan
...In April, Billy Corgan announced that Smashing Pumpkins will reunite and begin recording a new album... Rihanna released her sophomore disc, Unfaithful, featuring the single S.O.S., which includes a sample of Soft Cell's Tainted Love... and Cee-Lo and DangerMouse's collaboration, Gnarls Barkley took the U.S. by storm, as their hit single Crazy stormed the charts and took off as one of 2006's most popular tunes.

Bands that released new albums include: The Flaming Lips, Daft Punk, Gorillaz, Blue October, Lacuna Coil, Lamb Of God, Pink, Queensryche, The Vines, Eagles Of Death Metal, Qu...
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