Ebony's other career highlight is a turn as "Bikini Model #5" in the movie "Pauly Shore Is Dead" (a more egregious credit than Lingerie Football in our view). She is also credited on an Internet modeling site with having been on "America's Next Top Model," though not as a contestant. FOX had no comment on Jointer's previous career excursions, but we can't help wondering whether her resume played a part in why the golden-throated skater did not appear on the leaked Top 24 list.
AKRON: IDOL INFORMED
TMZ.com reports that fallen Idol contestant Akron Watson is claiming that FOX producers knew about his 2003 pot bust, "from the very very first day, before I even auditioned."
On a radio interview with "Tony & Cappy In the Morning" on KDMX in Dallas, Watson said producers have still not come clean with him about why he was told he wouldn't be making the trip to Hollywood. "I questioned and questioned, and they had a psychologist call me because they thought that I might be flipping out, but I just really wanted to know why I went down there and earned my ticket and didn't get a chance to go."
Although there is speculation that the marijuana conviction led to Watson's dismissal, it seems unlikely to us. Criminal or unsavory backgrounds have led to contestant eliminations in the past (i.e. the Brittenum twins during Season 5's Hollywood rounds) -- even during the live rounds (Jaered Andrews, Frenchie Davis and Corey Clark in Season 2). But in the midst of Season 4, TheSmokingGun.com revealed that contestant and eventual runner-up Bo Bice had a couple of arrests and one conviction for drug possession, while fellow finalist Scott Savol had been arrested for domestic abuse. Neither Bice nor Savol were eliminated for their pasts. Reps for "Idol" continue to have no comment on the controversy.
WHAT SONG WOULD YOU CHOOSE?
People magazine asked some celebs what song they'd choose for an Idol audition. Here are their answers:
- Nelly Furtado: I would sing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" just to be different.
- Neil Patrick Harris: "Rocket Man" by Elton John. It has good range. It tells a bit of a story but it's not so straight on the nose like I'm singing about long-lost love or something. And Elton John is pretty kick-ass.
- Deborah Gibson: I would sing "Lost in Your Eyes" so I could get the royalty check since I wrote it. No, really, I would sing something by Richard Marx because his melodies are amazing and then there's no pressure to sound like the original artist because he's a man. I think the biggest mistake (contestants) make is singing a song by someone of the same sex who they can't hold a candle to. So I'd probably sing "Right Here Waiting for You." Something simple and melodic.
- Katie Couric: "Faithless Love" by Linda Ronstadt.
- Lauren Conrad (The Hills): Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'." I've karaoke'd it many times.
- Andy Roddick: I don't sing. If I ever did something musical for a girl it would not end up in me getting her. It would end up in her walking away. I wish I was musical. I am so jealous of people who can sing. Maybe if they had Menudo night or .Bananarama with some fun 80s music, I could get away with something
- Billy Bob Thornton: I'd sing "When The Levee Breaks" [by Led Zeppelin]. That's a song that's very apt for the times.
PORE IN NAME, RICH IN HEART
According to Celebrity Spider, 64-year-old Sherman Pore, who sang The Duprees' "You Belong to Me" on the L.A. audition show, says he petitioned the show's producers to let him sing for the judges as a tribute to his late partner, Melissa Miller, who had died just two days before audition. Since the show aired, Pore has since appeared on a number of news shows, where he has fought back tears to explain his decision to become an American Idol.
He said, "She passed away on Friday morning and for the next day and a half I was sitting around the apartment dumping several buckets of tears, and she said, 'Stop your crying, get off your tail and go out and do what you promised.' "
For those of you who missed Pore's touching audition, you can catch it on YouTube here.
IDOL ALUMNI NEWS
Fans of Season 2 finalist Kimberley Locke can catch the video of her new single, "Change" (see Chartwatch below), exclusively on AmericanIdol.com. Listening to it is another reminder of how much talent has flowed from Idol in a scant five years.
Locke's sophomore album, "Based on a True Story," scheduled for an April release, is a much more “hands-on” project for the singer, who only co-wrote one song on her first album. She assisted in the writing of nine songs on "Based."
The song-writing sessions were a very emotional experience for Locke, who admitted she cried during many because they entailed divulging aspects of her personal life to her co-writers. The song "Change" is about a pivotal moment in Kimberley's life when she was deciding whether or not to stay with her ex-fiance.
Locke still keeps in touch with many people from Idol, particularly those who were behind-the-scenes, including music director Michael Orland, makeup artist Mezghan Hussainy and hair stylist Dean Banowetz. She also talks regularly to both Ruben Studdard and Clay Aiken.
Locke's business interests include Croton Creek Steakhouse and Wine Bar in Croton, N.Y. She’s also taking acting lessons and will be touring in support of the album release in late summer or early fall.
... She only came in 7th on Season 3 of Idol, but in the past two months Jennifer Hudson has won the Golden Globe and SAG Best Supporting Actress awards for her role as Effie White in "Dreamgirls," as well as an Oscar nomination in the same category. Now on Feb. 25 at 7 p.m., Hudson will be interviewed by Barbara Walters for her annual pre-Oscars special.
Hudson, who will discuss her Idol experience, tells Walters that if she had won "America Idol" she probably would not have gotten the role of Effie. Also appearing on the special are Hudson's "Dreamgirls" co-star and Best Supporting Actor nominee Eddie Murphy, as well as Best Actress nominee Helen Mirren and Oscar host Ellen DeGeneres.
... Donna Reynolds' Idol Chartwatch reports that Katharine McPhee’s new CD debuted at #2 on the Billboard 200, selling 116,000 copies in its first week, second only to Norah Jones’ "Not Too Late." McPhee's album was #5 on the Internet Album sales chart and #2 on the Digital list. Katharine’s staying power on the charts will depend on how well her single “Over It” does.
"Daughtry" took third place this week, with almost 77,000 more copies sold in the album’s 11th week of release. The album was #8 on the Internet Album sales chart, #6 on the Digital chart and #1 on Top Rock Albums.
"Dreamgirls," featuring Jennifer Hudson, was #7 on the Billboard 200, #16 on the Internet Album sales chart, #1 on the Soundtracks chart and #4 on Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums.
Carrie Underwood’s "Some Hearts" dropped 10 spots to #24 on the Billboard 200. It was #3 on the Country chart; Taylor Hicks was down 13 spots to #76 on the Billboard 200; Fantasia was #90 on the Billboard 200 and #18 on the R&B/Hip-Hop chart; Kellie Pickler’s "Small Town Girl" was #87 on the Billboard 200 and #12 on the Country chart. Ruben Studdard’s "The Return" was #62 on the R&B/Hip-Hop chart; Kelly Clarkson’s "Breakaway" was #40 on the Pop Catalog chart.
This Week’s Idols Singles Charts
Katharine McPhee’s “Over It” debuted on five charts, including the Hot 100 (#48), the Pop 100 (#40), the Pop 100 Airplay chart (#44), Hot Digital Tracks (#25) and Hot Digital Songs (#32); Kellie Pickler’s “I Wonder” broke into the Country chart at #60. Her single “Red High Heels” was #78 on the Hot 100 and #77 on the Pop 100; Chris Daughtry’s “It’s Not Over” was #4 on the Hot 100, #15 on the Hot 100 Airplay chart, #3 on the Pop 100, #7 on the Pop 100 Airplay chart, #3 on Hot Digital Tracks, #3 on Hot Digital Sales and #5 on the Adult Top 40 listing; Bucky Covington’s “A Different World” was #41 on the Country chart; Carrie Underwood’s “Before He Cheats” was #37 on the Hot 100, #42 on the Hot 100 Airplay chart, #45 on the Pop 100, #49 on the Pop 100 Airplay chart, #31 on Hot Digital Tracks, #39 on Hot Digital Sales and #26 on the Adult Top 40. Her latest single, “Wasted,” broke into the Hot 100 at #94 and was #67 on the Hot 100 Airplay chart. It was #14 on the Country chart; Clay Aiken’s “A Thousand Days” was #28 on the Adult Contemporary chart; Kimberley Locke’s “Change” was #19 on the Adult Contemporary chart; Jennifer Hudson’s “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going” was #79 on the Hot 100, #55 on the Hot 100 Airplay chart, #17 on the Hot R&B/Hip Hop Singles chart, #17 on the R&B Airplay chart and #10 on the R&B Adult airplay list; Fantasia’s “Hood Boy” was #36 on the Hot R&B/Hip Hop Singles chart, #36 on the R&B Airplay chart and #34 on the Adult R&B list; Ruben Studdard’s “Change Me” was #22 on the Hot R&B/Hip Hop Singles, #22 on the R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay Chart and #2 on the R&B Adult airplay list. It was #73 on the Hot 100 Airplay chart; Josh Gracin’s “I Keep Coming Back” was #30 on the Country chart.
Katharine McPhee’s “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” / “My Destiny” was #4 on the Single Sales chart this week, and Taylor Hicks’ “Do I Make You Proud” / “Takin’ it to the Streets” was #15.
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