LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 26: Singer Kelly Clarkson performs at Staples Center on January 26, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Tullberg/Getty Images)
Photo: Michael Tullberg/Getty Images
Photo: Michael Tullberg/Getty Images

‘American Idol’ notes: Kelly Clarkson, Fantasia, Caleb Lee Hutchinson, Jordin Sparks

Originally filed Thursday, February 7, 2019 by RODNEY HO@ajc.com on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

Kelly Clarkson said on the “Ellen” show earlier this week that said she needs to improve her listening in preparation for her talk show this fall.

"I do need to learn. I have literally been watching — like, I’ve seen your show, tons of it. I watch all your episodes and Oprah’s and everyone’s because I’m like, 'How do I listen?'" the singer told Ellen DeGeneres. 

She fits a lot of words in a short period of time and said she has trouble knowing when to shut up. Her producer, she said, has to show her an airplane so she knows to “land” and stop talking. 

And Clarkson admitted she tends to interrupt people. And when she did that to DeGeneres.

“See how you just cut me off just now?" DeGeneres said, as the audience laughed.

"I'm gonna practice," Clarkson promised.

She said she plans to open each show singing a song (not her). It’s a way to honor others and it gets her in the right place in her mind. As a result, “I was oddly comfortable,” she said. 

On NBC-owned stations, “The Kelly Clarkson Show” will lead into “Ellen” but Tegna-owned 11 Alive in Atlanta is not planning to air it. NBCUniversal is finalizing an Atlanta affiliate soon. 


Former Snellville resident and season 3 runner up Diana DeGarmo reached her Kickstarter goal of $26,750 to finish her next album “Gemini” and fund a tour.

“The songs are written, recorded, mixed, and mastered. The album art is complete and I need your help,” she wrote on her Kickstarter. “With unexpected surgeries I ran out of money.”

“This kickstarter account is to celebrate 2 years of hard work,” she continued. “I want to print vinyl's for y'all and have 3 Big Band Country BLOWOUT PERFORMANCES to give you GEMINI in Nashville, New York, and Los Angeles! I am so proud of this album. It is my heart and soul and I can't wait for you all to experience it LIVE!


LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 25: Fantasia arrives at "Q 85: A Musical Celebration for Quincy Jones" presented by BET Networks at Microsoft Theater on September 25, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Maury Phillips/Getty Images for BET)
Photo: Maury Phillips/Getty Images for BET

The Grammy’s will do an Aretha Franklin tribute that will feature Fantasia. She sang at Franklin’s funeral last year. Andra Day and Yolanda Adams will join her. 

Back in 2011, the Grammy’s did a tribute for Franklin while she was still alive featuring  Adams, Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Hudson, Florence Welch and Martina McBride


NASHVILLE, TN - NOVEMBER 14: (FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY) Caleb Lee Hutchinson attends the 52nd annual CMA Awards at the Bridgestone Arena on November 14, 2018 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images)
Photo: Jason Kempin/Getty Images

Caleb Lee Hutchinson will be making his first solo concert in Atlanta since he came in second on “American Idol” last year. He’ll perform at Eddie’s Attic February 21. Tickets available here for $25 to $30. 

Clark Beckham, runner up from season 14, will also appear at Eddie’s Attic March 19. He is returning after a concert there just this past November. Tickets are $10 to $50


NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 12: Jordin Sparks attends the Friar's Club Honors Billy Crystal with their Entertainment Icon Award at The Ziegfeld Ballroom on November 12, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Manny Carabel/Getty Images)
Photo: Manny Carabel/Getty Images

Jordin Sparks is starring in a new comedy called “Besties” on Freeform. 

She is the second “Idol” alum starring in a Freeform show. Katie Stevens from season 9 stars in “The Bold Type.” 

Sparks plays Becca, an ambitious overachiever from a hard-working, conservative African-American family, who learns that her birth mother is actually white, according to the show description. 

Set in Los Angeles, the series will follow Becca and her newly discovered half-sister Jesi, as they’re thrown into each other’s lives by an online genetics test and have to figure out how to go from strangers to sisters.


Adam Lambert had an uncredited cameo as a bearded truck driver who hooked up with Freddie Mercury in the film “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

Clay Aiken Tweet of the week

While he did a couple of political ones the past week, I’ll highlight the one about the death of smooth-singing James Ingram:

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About the Author

Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.