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American Idol Fodder

"American Idol" Returns Tuesday

Almost seven months have passed since the country was gripped by either Lambert-mania or Allen fever. In that time, several of the top contestants have released their own albums, the Top 10 went on tour and Adam Lambert went nuts on the American Music Awards.

But starting Tuesday, the drama begins again as “American Idol” launches its ninth season! Wow, where does the time go? Seems like only yesterday my mom called me up, enraged that Ruben Studdard pulled the upset over favored-to-win Clay Aiken. (But judging by how that all turned out, maybe it’s best not to go there.) We’ve seen unknowns like Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Chris Daughtry, Jordin Sparks and David Cook, go on to become best-selling artists. And we’ve also seen some unknowns stay unknown (What ever happened to Blake Lewis? Is Diana DeGarmo still singing? And will Taylor Hicks ever get his ‘Soul Patrol’ to go national?).

Now it’s time for a new group of singers to wow viewers and expose America to new musical styles. Last summer, the auditions tour rolled on again, this time sans Paula Abdul who decided to hang her judge’s robe up for good last year. Filling her spot at the seven different audition locales this year will be a rotating lineup, which Entertainment Weekly says will include Victoria Beckham, Mary J. Blige, Kristin Chenoweth, Neil Patrick Harris, Joe Jonas, Avril Lavigne, Katy Perry, and Shania Twain.

And on Feb. 9, to quote Sam Jackson from “Jurassic Park,” everyone hold on to your butts. That’s when the most exciting addition to “Idol” appears (sorry Kara DioGuardi, you don’t even make the top five)- Ellen DeGeneres! The daytime talk show host/comedian will take her permanent seat on the judges’ panel during this year’s Hollywood Round. On Feb. 17, the Top 24 contestants will be announced.

Fox has once again announced a revision to the format, as it goes back to the process it used for seasons, with the female singers performing on three consecutive Tuesdays, and the male singers performing on three consecutive Wednesdays. Results will be revealed each Thursday until it whittles down to 12 singers. And sorry, if you were a fan of the show’s Wild Card round, it doesn’t look like it will happen this year.

Season 9’s audition tour starts Tuesday, with its first stop in Beantown. Here’s the new season’s schedule as published by Fox, and reported by

  • Tuesday, Jan. 12 (8:00-10:00 PM) Boston Auditions Episode
  • Wednesday, Jan. 13 (8:00-9:15 PM) Atlanta Auditions Episode
  • Tuesday, Jan. 19 (8:00-9:00 PM) Chicago Auditions Episode
  • Wednesday, Jan. 20 (8:00-9:00 PM) Orlando Auditions Episode
  • Tuesday, Jan. 26 (8:00-9:00 PM) Dallas Auditions Episode
  • Wednesday, Jan. 27 (9:00-10:00 PM) Los Angeles Auditions Episode
  • Tuesday, Feb. 2 (8:00-9:00 PM) Denver Auditions Episode
  • Wednesday, Feb. 3 (9:00-10:00 PM) “The Road to Hollywood” Auditions Episode
  • Tuesday, Feb. 9 (8:00-9:00 PM) Hollywood Round, Part 1
  • Wednesday, Feb. 10 (9:00-10:00 PM) Hollywood Round, Part 2
  • Tuesday, Feb. 16 (8:00-9:00 PM) Hollywood Round, Part 3
  • Wednesday, Feb. 17 (9:00-10:00 PM) Hollywood Round, Part 4 (Top 24 Semifinalists Announced)
  • Tuesday, Feb. 23 (8:00-10:00 PM) Top 12 Female Semifinalists Perform
  • Wednesday, Feb. 24 (8:00-10:00 PM) Top 12 Male Semifinalists Perform
  • Thursday, Feb. 25 (8:00-9:00 PM) First Results Show (ET live/PT tape-delayed)
  • Tuesday, March 2 (8:00-10:00 PM) Top 10 Female Semifinalists Perform
  • Wednesday, March 3 (8:00-10:00 PM) Top 10 Male Semifinalists Perform
  • Thursday, March 4 (8:00-9:00 PM) Results Show (ET live/PT tape-delayed)
  • Tuesday, March 9 (8:00-9:00 PM) Top 8 Female Semifinalists Perform
  • Wednesday, March 10 (9:00-10:00 PM) Top 8 Male Semifinalists Perform
  • Thursday, March 11 (8:00-9:00 PM) Results Show (ET live/PT tape-delayed) (Top 12 revealed)
  • Tuesday, March 16 (8:00-10:00 PM) Finalists Perform (ET live/PT tape-delayed)
  • Wednesday, March 17 (9:00-10:00 PM) Results Show (ET live/PT tape-delayed)

Are you excited about the new season? What are your predictions for this year (man, woman, country-singer, rock star, etc.)? And are there any theme nights on your wish list (21st Century songs, Country-Rock Week, Songs from the Year the Judges Were Born)? Post below and get ready for the new season! – Chris Sardelli

Posted by Chris on January 10, 2010 4:38 PM
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