Alejandro Aranda releases a new song

Full-throated R&B/gospel singer Willie Spence, this year’s runner-up on “American Idol,” will be the first performer at Atlanta Symphony Hall since the pandemic began. He will be performing Saturday at 8 p.m.

Spence, who now lives in Dunwoody, said in an interview that he was invited by the venue and was happy to take on the responsibility.

“I’m just grateful,” he said.

The show, which will include a live band, will feature several songs he sang on “Idol,” including his bracing “Diamonds” by Rihanna and the original song “Never Be Alone,” produced by Tricky Stewart and created for him for the TV show during the finale.

“I never get tired of ‘Diamonds,’” said Spence, who had a viral video in 2017 performing that song long before “Idol.”

He plans to do a gospel segment during the concert. “A lot of people love seeing that side of me,” he said. “I sung gospel on the show but I didn’t sing it like I normally do. After this, they’ll see how I was raised, where I came from.”

Since ending “Idol” in May, Spence has been doing festivals, car shows and other events and hopes to get into a recording studio soon to work with producers on a full-fledged album soon.

You can buy tickets for $19.50 to $29.50 here.

***

caption arrowCaption
Kelly Clarkson performs during the Billboard Music Awards held at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. (Andrew Gombert/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

Credit: TNS

Kelly Clarkson performs during the Billboard Music Awards held at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. (Andrew Gombert/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

Credit: TNS

caption arrowCaption
Kelly Clarkson performs during the Billboard Music Awards held at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. (Andrew Gombert/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

Credit: TNS

Credit: TNS

Kelly Clarkson’s divorce with talent manager Brandon Blackstock has been tumultuous, but she did win a court victory last week: A judge upheld the former couple’s prenuptial agreement.

Blackstock had contested the prenup, which segregated all the assets and income gained by both parties during their marriage. He was asking for a split of what Clarkson made during their marriage. The judge kept the prenup intact, which means Clarkson gets to keep all her assets and income for herself, including the Montana ranch where Blackstock is living. She made far more money than Blackstock did over seven years.

Clarkson filed for divorce in June of last year. A judge granted her custody of her two children — daughter River Rose, 7, and son Remington Alexander, 5 — last November.

Blackstock lost his last major client Blake Shelton, who recently fired him as manager after a lengthy relationship. Shelton works with Clarkson on “The Voice.”

For now, Clarkson is providing Blackstock nearly $200,000 a month in spousal and child support, according to People magazine.

***

caption arrowCaption
Jennifer Hudson previews the Detroit Historical Museum's exhibit that features the wardrobe from the "Respect" film that includes 1960s-style costumes and accessories, along with Franklin artifacts from the museum's own collection on Aug. 1, 2021, in Detroit. (Kimberly P. Mitchell/Detroit Free Press/TNS)

Credit: TNS

Jennifer Hudson previews the Detroit Historical Museum's exhibit that features the wardrobe from the "Respect" film that includes 1960s-style costumes and accessories, along with Franklin artifacts from the museum's own collection on Aug. 1, 2021, in Detroit. (Kimberly P. Mitchell/Detroit Free Press/TNS)

Credit: TNS

caption arrowCaption
Jennifer Hudson previews the Detroit Historical Museum's exhibit that features the wardrobe from the "Respect" film that includes 1960s-style costumes and accessories, along with Franklin artifacts from the museum's own collection on Aug. 1, 2021, in Detroit. (Kimberly P. Mitchell/Detroit Free Press/TNS)

Credit: TNS

Credit: TNS

On “Good Morning America” Tuesday, Jennifer Hudson did a medley of Aretha Franklin songs on a platform jutting out of a building at Hudson Yards in New York City.

The film “Respect,” which was shot largely in metro Atlanta in 2019 and early 2020, came out Friday. Hudson was hand-picked by Franklin to play her in the family-approved film before she died in 2018.

The movie is opening under the cloud of a COVID resurgence. Biopics of this sort don’t always do well in the box office but Hudson is getting solid reviews for her performance.

>>RELATED: My interview with Hudson about the film

***

caption arrowCaption
THE 54TH ANNUAL CMA AWARDS - ÒThe 54th Annual CMA AwardsÓ, hosted by Reba McEntire and Darius Rucker aired from NashvilleÕs Music City Center, WEDNESDAY, NOV. 11 (8:00-11:00 p.m. EST), on ABC. (ABC) GABBY BARRETT

Credit: ABC

THE 54TH ANNUAL CMA AWARDS - ÒThe 54th Annual CMA AwardsÓ, hosted by Reba McEntire and Darius Rucker aired from NashvilleÕs Music City Center, WEDNESDAY, NOV. 11 (8:00-11:00 p.m. EST), on ABC. (ABC)
GABBY BARRETT

Credit: ABC

caption arrowCaption
THE 54TH ANNUAL CMA AWARDS - ÒThe 54th Annual CMA AwardsÓ, hosted by Reba McEntire and Darius Rucker aired from NashvilleÕs Music City Center, WEDNESDAY, NOV. 11 (8:00-11:00 p.m. EST), on ABC. (ABC) GABBY BARRETT

Credit: ABC

Credit: ABC

Season 16 “Idol” finalist and country star Gabby Barrett will perform at the North Georgia State Fair in Marietta on Wednesday, Sept. 29. The concert is free for anyone who pays an entry fee into the fair at Jim R. Miller Park.

Admission is $10 and parking $5. Anyone ages 10 or under can go in for free. There are discounts available online for rides.

Barrett has two No. 1 country hits, “I Hope” and “The Good Ones.” Both songs made the top 20 on the pop charts as well.

***

Season 17 “Idol” runner-up Alejandro Aranda, who goes by Scarypoolparty, has released the new song “Poison” from his upcoming album, ‘The Act of Forgiveness.”

Before the pandemic, he was touring extensively and selling out theaters nationwide, including a stop at the Buckhead Theatre in 2019.

About the Author

Editors' Picks