Yes, Bo Bice's second CD, tentatively titled "American Blood," is scheduled to drop on Sept. 18 and will be a return to Bice's Southern rock roots.
"I think this CD will really showcase all I've wanted to with my music -- it's a chance for me to go out and rock in a way that I'm really comfortable with," Bice says.
Bice's Web site seems to indicate that he is now affiliated with the indie label StratArt and Strategic Artists Management. There are also reports, though we can not confirm them, that the CD will be recorded in Nashville with producer Frank Liddell, with more input and writing from Bice this time around.
Bice also hand-picked all of his collaborators, including Gary Nichols and Chris Tompkins, whom Bice has known for more than a decade. The pair co-penned "American Blood," a slower, country-driven support song for the U.S. troops.
Want to design the cover for Bo's new CD? His official Web site is running a contest. All entries must be submitted by July 31st. Click here for details.
For a taste of what's to come, sample this video of the live band version of one of the CD's cuts that the Internet is buzzing about, called "I'm Gone":
To listen to the acoustic version, check out Bice's MySpace site.
JORDIN SPARKS: 'I LOVE MY SONG'
A little late out of the gate, the Broward Times just printed this interview with Jordin Sparks about the start of the Idol tour in Sunrise, Fla., even though it happened over a week ago. *Sigh*
Anyway, here's what she (and they) had to say:
Jordin Sparks' eyes are wide as she enters a room full of reporters. She and the finalists of the American Idol competition are about to kick off their summer tour of the United States, right in our back yard at the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise.
At 17, Sparks is the youngest person to win the American Idol competition. For her, this summer tour represents a turning point in her career and her life.
Her smile is wide when she sits down to speak with me. Her hair is pulled back into a carefree ponytail, and she is wearing loose jeans and a rock star T-shirt. She fidgets with her hands.
"All of this is new to me. I mean this is a great experience, and I'm just trying to handle it the best way possible," she says with enthusiasm.
Her summer plans are vastly different from your average high schooler. In between touring with the American Idol contestants, Sparks will be flying back and forth to New York to work on her album.
Her mother and grandmother will travel with the underage pop star. Third-place winner Melinda Doolittle will also be there to lend a helping hand.
"Jordin is like my little sister," Doolittle said. "I love her just like she was my sister. We strengthen each other through this process. I've been fortunate to travel and do some background singing, and I share my experiences with her."
The tour will place an enormous strain on the young American Idol.
Sparks has never had to do as much singing as she will be required to do this summer. But the physical and mental strain of touring and recording an album are challenges that Sparks gladly accepts.
"This is what it all was for. I'm just going to take care of my body and make sure that I do what I have to do to perform for all the people that voted for me," she says.
To achieve that end, the contestants rehearsed late into the night before the opening show of the tour at the BankAtlantic Center on July 6.
Unlike past American Idol tours, this edition of the tour will have a lot more group performances and duets.
Sparks and Doolittle, who are good friends, were set to perform a duet they said would give the fans exactly what they wanted.
"I'm anxious to get out on stage and perform some songs that they have never heard me sing. On the show, we sang to a studio audience of like 500 people. You had to be conscious of the cameras and angles and everything, but now we can just perform," Sparks says with excitement in her eyes.
While the tour is what is happening now for Sparks and the rest of the idols, it is almost impossible for the aspiring entertainers not to think ahead.
Second-place winner Blake Lewis said he has already recorded six songs for his album. Sparks had only recorded one song for her album at the time of our interview, but it is a song she thinks will have a big impact on popular music.
"I love my song," she says. "I keep listening to it and singing it to myself and then I have to remember that I kind of have to keep it a secret until it comes out."
It'll be hard for Sparks to keep anything secret after this tour. She is extremely close with her family.
Her father, Phillippi Sparks, played professional football for the New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys. Her mother, Jodi, and her brother, PJ (Phillippi Sparks Jr.) are her two biggest fans. Sparks said her brother is her best friend.
She also said she will lean heavily on her Christian faith to guide her through this major life transition.
"God made all of this possible and my family has really been super supportive of everything I'm doing," Sparks said. "I'm just excited to be going through this and I'm going to see where it leads me."
GEE PAULA, HE SCARES THEM OFF, NOT YOU?
ing to Digital Spy, Paula Abdul has admit-
ted that she does not bring any of her prospective boyfriends down to the American Idol studios to meet Simon Cowell because he scares them.
The reality TV judge has claimed the music mogul interrogates any man that she introduces him to and makes sure they treat her well.
While filming ITV's "Loose Women," the singer said: "I will not let any guy I date come down to Idol because Simon will grill him. We do fight but when we get along, we get along great."
JORDIN LOVES JUSTIN TIMBERFAKE
Well, that what the not always reliable, but always amusing, TMZ's latest buzz is about. According to the Web site, Jordin Sparks has fallen head ovah heels for Chris Richardson! While she and runner-up Blake Lewis are just friends, the site said that they've been told that Jordin has a huge crush on 23-year-old Richardson -- despite his penchant for late nights and hanging out with the likes of Lauren Conrad.
Sources on the tour tell TMZ that because Jordin is only 17, her minders and family members are doing everything they can to keep from letting anything -- or anyone -- get in the way of the underage star's bright future.
FANTASIA VIDEOS ON 'GOOD MORNING AMERICA'
Watch videos of Fantasia's performances on "Good Morning America" yesterday.
Singing "When I See U":
Singing "I'm Here":
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