Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Aiken Interview a Must Read

CLAY AIKEN - Portrait of a Valentine. Graphic by Sally.

Broadway Article Tops with Fans

Spamalot's New Star Speaks Out

The buzz around Clay Aiken message boards is not so much about Valentine's Day, but an extraordinary interview on Clay's the Thing! Spamalot's New Star Speaks Out.

In only two days, some fans can quote lengthy passages from memory. All who have read it have favorite paragraphs, lines, replies. One of the best Aiken interviews ever - and, for sure, the best since the singer-actor stepped onto the Broadway stage Jan. 18 as Sir Robin in 'Spamalot' - Kathy Henderson's article has the Clay Nation grinning.

Here is the lead:

Everybody knows that Clay Aiken can sing, but—surprise!—he can also hold his own on a Broadway stage. To be more precise, he can hula, ogle scantily clad girls, discuss flying coconuts in a British accent, pretend to poop in his tunic, do a Cossack-style line dance and perform a lightning-fast patter song ("You won't succeed on Broadway if you don't have any Jews") without dropping a syllable.


The truth is, Clay is smart guy who knows what works for him, and he was shrewd enough to realize that Spamalot, in its own nutty way, would be a good match for his talents and his sunny sensibility. "If somebody said to me, 'Who in this cast has never done theater?' he is the last person I would have chosen," says Hannah Waddingham, the Olivier Award-nominated British musical star who joined the Tony-winning musical as the Lady of the Lake the same night Aiken debuted. Three weeks into his run, Broadway's new Sir Robin shared his impressions of life in Spamalot.

Questions Run the Gamut

A three-pager online, the interview answers such questions as:

How did you feel after your first Broadway performance? ... So, who talked you into coming to Broadway? You didn't have to audition, or try out a British accent?

Is it fun to sing the show's politically incorrect song about Broadway shows needing Jews to be a success? ... What are you enjoying most about being on Broadway? ... What's been the biggest surprise?

How does eight Broadway shows a week compare in difficulty to ten weeks of competition on American Idol? ... Are you surprised that so many American Idol alums have turned up on Broadway?

How do you see your career progressing? ... Will you continue to do covers or record new music? ... Where are you on the spectrum of, say, a singer like Michael Buble vs. the kind of pop music they play on a top-40 station?

You were a teacher before American Idol, and now you're involved with UNICEF. Do you see yourself performing for the rest of your life, or could you walk away and do something totally different?

Substance AND Soundbytes

Oh, there are sound bytes galore, but there is plenty of substance in Ms. Henderson's questions and Clay's responses. Some examples ...

People on Broadway are, without question, the most talented people in the country because they're doing seven things at once! They're dancing and they're singing and they're acting and they're speaking in tongues and they're playing piano and tapping. I mean, if Simon uses that as an insult again, he can kiss it!

When I'm singing a song onstage in concert, I'm wondering what I'm doing for dinner. I'm like, "Oh wow, look at that person in the third row. Does she know her buttons are not in order?" ... I can critique myself as I go. Here, I'm still thinking about "OK, left, right, jump, left, up, down, left, left, switch, switch, flip, turn!" I don't have enough brain cells left over to consider whether or not I'm doing it well.

... once you try to cater to the radio stations, you stop catering to (a) the listener and (b) me. If you try to make the music fit what you think radio is going to want, you're going to miss the mark. But if we just go out and do what we do well, then it's going to be natural and maybe radio will like it. It's not something that I'm averse to; I would absolutely love it if it happens, but it's not something to work toward at the expense of doing what we want to do.

Kudos to Ms. Henderson for an awesome interview and for letting Clay have his say!

Bottle Dance cap by ClaytonAikenFan86

Fox Promos Clay in 'Spamalot'

Tuesday night and Wednesday morning Fox stations across the country featured a segment about Clay's debut in "Spamalot." The lead-in on LA Fox-11 was, "He was never crowned an American Idol, but Clay Aiken has gotten the Holy Grail of Broadway."

Clay said his AI days were a challenge but nothing like the grueling schedule of musical theatre. In the brief interview, he credited Idol for his success.

For the complete New York version, view Idol on Broadway at the Fox site. Three broadcasts of the news segment from Atlanta to LA can be seen at
You can download the LA spot with this Sendspace: The Idol of My Age.


Cha Cha Trusty's Claymatized website is currently featuring SPAMALOT ~ The Story and Lyrics.

Inspiration for
the Spamalot project was, of course, Broadway's new Sir Robin; but the compilation features much more than "What a Difference a Clay Makes."

You know you're in for a ride with this fun subtitle: SPAMALOT: A His-Story - The Story of His Spamalot - Oh, Soddit - Here's the Poop!

The show's history, songs/lyrics by act, photos and videos from various production locations, and countless links fill the site before the final gauntlet -- SPAM, a very silly catapult game of fun.

Plan to spend some serious time as you "research" the veritable feast of Spamalot at Claymatized.

PHOTO INTERLUDE: Featured in this clickable collection are Valentine graphics and photos of seven visual artists, including ABeautifulMind, 1; Amazing_CA, photo by Toni7babe, 2; Claysmelody, photo by PermaSwooned, 3; Ambassador of Love, 4; and Amazing_CA, photo by Butterflyshine, 5.

Clay Moves to #3 on Lycos 50

In his 239th consecutive week on the
Lycos Top 50, Clay jumped to third in the "most searched" listing.

Only poker and golf topped Singer Man, who moved up three rungs from #6 the previous week.
His subheading of "Broadway Star" is most fitting.

Clickable Lycos 50

Greetings, New Carolina Readers!

Carolina On My Mind welcomes new readers from Portugal, South Africa, and the Canary Islands as the countries keeping up with Clay Aiken news at the Blogspot journal now totals 42.

According to the Carolina site's ClustrMap, which registers computer locales, the countries by continent include:

AFRICA: Canary Islands, South Africa

ASIA: Saudi Arabia, India, Oman, Micronesia, Malaysia, Hong Kong-China, Korea, Japan, the Philippines

AUSTRALIA: Australia, New Zealand

EUROPE: Iceland, Spain, Portugal, Great Britain, Ireland, France, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands, Greece, Germany, Italy, Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Romania

NORTH AMERICA: Canada, United States, Mexico, Costa Rica, El Salvador

SOUTH AMERICA: Peru, Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela, Columbia, Chile

Special thnx to Ron Kanipe for helping this musician decipher the geography of the map's red dots. It is amazing that
people from around the globe are dropping by the Carolina blog to read about Clay!

Grandson Kai has our final word. Graphic by Amazing_CA

Happy Valentine's Day, Clay Nation!


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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Caro
I just read through the Spamalot part. It really was a special nights(s).As I said before great blog. Congrats on all the new readers. I'll bet they were glad they found you I know I was.
Hugs Margaret