Saturday, April 17, 2010

Aiken-Studdard Finale Still Tops AI

Clay Aiken-Ruben Studdard, Timeless
Montage by SueReu

Link to You Tube for full page view.
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Best AI Season Ever

Clay-Ruben Pairing 'Timeless'

Through eight editions of American Idol, the 38.1 million viewers garnered by the Clay Aiken-Ruben Studdard Finale of May 21, 2003, not only confirms the popularity of the two singers but also the high bar set by the Season 2 contestants.

The faltering ratings of Season 9 all but guarantee that when the confetti falls and a new Idol is crowned in May, the Aiken-Studdard Finale will still be the champ.

An article by Lisa de Moraes in the Sunday, April 18, Washington Post -- Fallen 'Idol': The champ stumbles -- outlines the evolving problems of American Idol as its competition, Dancing With the Stars, has stepped up.

Click to enlarge AI overview. (Best viewed at Washington Post online.)

Accompanying the article is Seasons of 'Idol'-atry, an overview of the show's nine seasons to date. With 38.1 and 36.4 million viewers, respectively, the finales of Seasons 2 and 5 maintain their gold-silver ranking.

Ironically, Clay Aiken participated in both, as a finalist in his season and as a surprise guest performer with a suave makeover that momentarily fooled loyal fans and Idol personnel alike.

Don't Let the Sun go Down on Me
Clay Aiken surprises AI5 Finale audience.

Link to YouTube to view full screen.

Lythgoe Reveals AI5 Secrecy Plan

In an interview on KTLA-TV's Morning News Show later that week, Idol executive producer Nigel Lythgoe revealed that details of Clay's appearance and performance on the AI5 Finale were kept secret from almost everyone.

The singer arrived at an obscure entrance in an SUV with tinted windows. Sporting a suave new look and attracting no attention whatsoever, he walked in unnoticed with wardrobe personnel and the garments they were transporting, secretly watching the show in a nearby building before being escorted to the stage for his entrance.

Clay was there to surprise Michael Sandecki, an early contestant who supposedly had won the Golden Idol Award for "Best Impersonation" of a previous finalist. As the stage doors parted, Clay entered singing DLTSGDOM. The theater audience and television viewers went wild.

It was the same incredible voice, but the maturity and difference in Clay's appearance were so striking that the panel of judges and emcee Ryan Seacrest didn't recognize him at first.

The event easily became the most discussed water cooler topic of the AI5 Finale, surmounting the buzz about the evening's newly-crowned Idol, Taylor Hicks.

TIMELESS - Clay and Ruben (Graphic by Fountaindawg)

CT, NY, IN Venues Set Ticket Dates

The popular "Timeless" duo of Clay and Rubin will again share the concert stage when they launch this summer's much-anticipated 17-city tour throughout North America.

On Friday, April 23, one the MGM Grand Foxwoods, Mashantucket, CT, will begin selling tickets for the Timeless Tour. Two that had been scheduled for the 23rd (The Hammerstein, New York City, NY) and the Horseshoe Casino (Hammond, IN) have been changed their dates.

Phone numbers and additional information are provided courtesy of toni7babe, who maintains the Summer 2010 Timeless Tour Forum at Clayversity. Mark your calendar for these sites:

MGM Grand Foxwoods, Mashantucket, CT, (Aug. 7 concert): Phone 866-646-0050. General public: 9 a.m. EDT., Friday, April 23.

The Hammestein, New York City, NY (Aug. 11 concert): Phone 212-279-7740. American Express Pre-sale, Thursday, April 22, 10 a.m. EDT - Thursday, April 29, 10 a.m. EDT; Live nation pre-sale Tuesday, April 27, 10 a.m. EDT - Thursday, April 29, 10 a.m. EDT; General public, Friday, April 30, 10 a.m. EDT.

Horseshoe Casino, Hammond, IN (Aug. 13 concert): Phone 866-711-7463. Tickets go on sale at Ticketmaster and at the box office at noon Friday, May 21.

Upcoming ticket sale dates on the books include the following:

May 7 - Ruth Echerd Hall, Clearwater, FL (July 26 concert)
May 7 - King Center for the Arts, Melbourne, FL (July 25 concert)
May 7 - Club Nokie, Los Angeles, CA, May (Aug. 1 concert)
May 8 - Mountain View Plaza, Snoqualmie, WA (July 29 concert)
May 21 - Caesar's Colosseum, Windsor, ON (Aug 5 concert)
May 21 - Horseshoe Casion, Hammond IN (Aug 13 concert)
May 28 - Potawatomi Casino, Milwaukee, WI (Aug 3 concert)
TBA - American Music Theater, Lancaster, PA (Aug 8 concert)

The 17 Timeless Tour concert sites are linked below. For up-to-date information on ticket sales, see Clayonline News, Ticketmaster, and the venue links.

Click to enlarge scan from 4/19 Star Magazine.
Posted by Clayfulthing.

2010 Timeless Tour: Concert List

Jul-23 - Asheville, NC - Biltmore Estate (Tickets on sale NOW)
Jul-24 - Jacksonville, FL -
The Florida Theater (Tickets on sale NOW)
Jul-25 - Melbourne, FL -
King Center For Arts (Ticket sale: May 7)
Jul-26 - Clearwater, FL -
Ruth Eckerd Hall (Ticket sale: May 7)
Jul-29 - Snoqualmie WA -
Casino- Mountain View Plaza (Tickets: May 8)
Jul-31 - Reno, NV -
Silver Legacy Casino (Tickets: NOW)
Aug-01 - Los Angeles, CA -
Club Nokia (Tickets: May 7)
Aug-03 - Milwaukee, WI -
Potawatomi Casino (Tickets: May 28)
Aug-05 - Windsor, ON -
Caesars Windsor (Tickets: May 21)
Aug-06 - Chautauqua, NY -
Chautauqua Institution Amphitheatre (Tickets: NOW)
Aug-07 - Mashantucket, CT -
MGM Grand Foxwoods (Tickets: NOW)
Aug-08 - Lancaster, PA -
American Music Theatre (Tickets: TBA)
Aug-10 - Hampton Beach, NH -
Hampton Beach Casino (Tickets: NOW)
Aug-11 - New York, NY -
The Hammestein (Tickets: April 30)
Aug-12 - Verona, NY -
Turning Stone Casino (Tickets: NOW)
Aug-13 - Hammond, IN -
Horseshoe Casino (Tickets: May 21)
Aug-14 - Biloxi, MS -
Beau Rivage (Tickets: NOW)

Have an awesome weekend, Clay Nation!



SueReu said...

I absolute adore watching the AI5 video of Clay Aiken and his surprise entrance. I can watch it over and over and NEVER get tired of it!! I'd say that is the best moment on American Idol, period and maybe the best moment in all reality TV. It was amazing.

:) thanks for using my video Caro! I had so much fun putting that together and was struck again at the friendship between Clay & Ruben. They're both special men with amazing voices. I'm hoping to get to a concert, but if I can't I'm expecting LOTS of pictures & videos!!!!

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Anonymous said...

I never tire of seeing that video! Clay is awesome and sure know this yr. we are gonna enjoy him and his talents! Thanks for the wonderful blog! Donna in Wi.


Hi Caro. Like Sue and surely many fans of Clay, I love this Clay Aiken participation in AI5.

I almost died the day I saw the TV show. I knew of his appearances on the forums, but I could not have seen the show. In Colombia transmitted the show two weeks later that United States. I knew the details, but to see for the first time... It was too exciting for my. I love it!!.

Sue I love your video too. Thanks

musicfan said...

I will always remember the moment I saw Clay enter the stage during the AI5 finale. It was amazing. I love that he surprised so many people.

Your blog has a lot of good information. Thank you!!

zanyforclay said...

I love your blog, Caro, and my heart still races when I see that AI5 clip. I keep it on my desktop and still watch it a few times a month!! It was absolutely breathtaking and the biggest highlight to date on AI, imo. Thanks for all the info and SueReu's great montage!! Can't wait for the tour to begin.

Sandy said...

I just love it when I see the figures showing how many people were turned into the AI2 finale! These figures will be hard to match! In fact I can almost guarantee they will never be matched or topped!
The AI5 performance by Clay still is close to my heart as being one that I will never forget! The cooler talk lasted for days!

Hope you are having a great weekend!



LovesClaysVoice said...

Caro, thanks for Sue's video and the AI5 finale! Both are great! I'm missing Clay and hope we hear from him soon!

T said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Caro, Thanks so much for sharing the great videos of Clay and Ruben. They are such a great team. As for the AI5 performance, words can't even describe the excitement in the audience. I love knowing that Clay and Ruben finale is still #1. Looking forward to all the great things Clay is bringing our way!
Keep up the great work!

T said...

t's wonderful remembering all the highlights especially AI2 and Clay's return on AI5. Those were exciting moments & everyone was just glued on their TV watching. AI2 was the best for me.

Beautiful montage, AI5 video and graphic.

Great blog Caro! It's been still busy but your blogs give me the updates. Thanks so much.

Have a nice weekend.


p.s. deleted my previous post because there was a typo.

Cindy said...

Such amazing memories this blog invokes. I've only been truly stunned by Clay a couple times over the years (and don't you know the most recent time was just a few weeks ago in Raleigh!) but when those doors opened and he walked out on the stage during the AI5 finale I literally gasped. What and experience that was. Wheeee!!

I don't believe they (AI) will ever top the excitement of the Clay/Ruben showdown. And isn't it wonderful - and a testament to both men - that they remain such steadfast friends today? We are lucky, lucky fans and I LOVE Clay Aiken.

Can't wait for their reunion. If their act in Raleigh is anything to go by, we're in for a treat!

MissSally said...

SueReu's montage and Fountaindawg's graphic are gorgeous! I always look forward to seeing their amazing creativity in your blogs, Caro.

AI jumped the shark long ago, and will never top season 2 - the best one ever. What's left is a show resorting to pathetic gimmicks in a futile attempt to regain their footing. They can change judges, get big name guests, and pull ridiculous stunts like having Adam Lambert "Mentor" contestants; none of it will work.

Clay Aiken, idol found, show over.

Anonymous said...

Hi Caro. Thanks for sharing great memories. I will never forget when Clay suprised us on AI5. I did not know it was him. lol Wonderful montage by SueRue also. Thanks for the tour dates too. I get to go to the concert in Indiana. I am super excited. :)



Anonymous said...

I compliment you on all your hard work doing these blogs for Clay fans. Thank you.

Hugs Margaret

Anonymous said...

I'll never forget the AI5 Show. I was glued to my set waiting to see him...but, when he appeared..I said to myself Is that Clay? He looked so different. The applause in that place was SOOO LOUD!!

Can't wait to see Clay and Ruben on Tour. They are something special and are such good loyal friends. I will be going to Melbourne, Fl. and can't wait! Thank you for your great blogs.

Anna said...

Thank you, what a fascinating blog, full of interesting facts and wonderful videos to enjoy. Somehow I missed the great AI5 moment when it happened, although I did watch AI5. Clay is such a natural performer and the tour with Ruben is definitely something to look forward to. I won't be going for the AI9 tour but will never in my life miss the AI2 dynamic duo in action! :D

Anonymous said...

Thanks for another kickass Clay Aiken blog, caro! Especially a few slices of my favorite AI seasons :)

Anonymous said...

I think this is one of your most exciting blogs ever. Our favorite AI moments, and the new tour all wrapped up together. It sounds like everyone can't get enough of watching the AI5 show. It's also one of my favorite Clay moments.

ImGranny said...

Wow! Great blog! Thank you for all your hard work in doing such wonderful blogs. I loved the videos too, especially the AI 5 finale. That is one of my all-time favorite Clay Aiken videos!

oana said...

thank you for this` s a real pleasure to read and watch your really helps me to stay in touch with everything that`s new regarding clay and his music,since i`m so so far away from you.thanks again.