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Latest News From CDD

Saturday, November 05, 2005

New Song Released To Radio?

From the CH:

This AM while driving to work in Southern Idaho I heard on 99.9 The Buzz (a
station that plays top 40 pop/hip hop, young listeners type music) a
"syndicated-like" recording stating that on Saturday night between 7 and 11PM
they would be playing a new song by Clay Aiken. They also mentioned Kelly
Clarkson's name in this recording.

UPDATE: No new song was aired.

Brief Mention - Interview with AI1 Finalist Jim Verraros

Brief Clay mention in this interview with AI1 Finalist Jim Verraros. Negative content advisory- this guy is so full of himself.

Interview: Jim Verraros

And until the next gig shows up on his plate, Jim seems ready, willing and eager to try just about anything that will help catapult his career to that next level.

Anything, that is, except bash the competition.

"I guess the only thing I get sick of is the Clay Aiken questions," he laughs. "I feel like we're so much energy on people who are not out, but we should be focusing on people who are and the progress and changes they've made. But hey, at the end of the day, he's sold more albums than me, so..."

Bitter? No! More like realistic!

Univ. Of Hartford Article

Negative content advisory. Abridgement appears below.

I Believe I Can... Be R. Kelly
By Matt Kamel
Published: Thursday, November 3, 2005

One day - and this day can't come soon enough - R. Kelly will build a spaceship and take us to the planet he's from. Until then, we will have to make due with "Trapped in the Closet: Chapters 1-12," which was just released on DVD. Forty minutes of pure, unadulterated genius that knocked me out, and I say that with not a hint of irony. I sat dazed in a stupor after viewing this, contemplating my purpose here on Earth. "Trapped" left me riding a wave of euphoria that I may well never experience again.

I'm not sure if people comprehend me: this is unprecedented, not only in music, but in the history of the world. It's not just that it's a chamber drama that rhymes the word "closet" with itself four consecutive times; this is a look inside the mind of a man who is genuinely bonkers. I don't even care anymore that he allegedly made porn with a minor, because this in some strange way justifies it. Now, I'm not saying doing that is OK, but if I were R. Kelly I would stand before the judge and give him this DVD as my alibi: "Look your honor, look what goes on in my head 24/7! I am so far from reality that I don't actually inhabit the same planet as you. Do you think about people named Chuck, Rufus and Sylvester who sing every occurrence in their lives to the same melody? Do you picture well-endowed midgets impregnating heavy-set white trash? Because I do, every waking minute of my life."

Yes, you read that correctly: well-endowed midgets impregnating overweight white trash. If you thought chapters one through five were Planters (nuts), then have you got the surprise of a lifetime waiting for you. With six through twelve, it's as if the stars have aligned, and Kelly completely let himself go. This is his Ninth Symphony, his Rite of Spring: something two hundred years from now people will still marvel at. There are no words to try and explain it, but I will say this: let this go on forever. Don't put this man behind bars, because the world needs him. We have hurricanes, terrorism and Clay Aiken. Isn't that enough crap to deal with? We need R. Kelly to help us escape to another time, a forgotten space.

CDD Editor's note: Uh-huh... isn't R. Kelly a sex offender? I better shut up...

Dog Giving Clay 'A Run For His Money'

Appeared in today's Durham Herald-Sun. Nice Clay mention.

Mid-sized 'Lucy' now Durham's big dog
By Susan Broili : The Herald-Sun
Nov 5, 2005 : 12:08 am ET

DURHAM -- Lucy can't sing.

But the Durham pooch now stands a good chance of giving "American Idol" star Clay Aiken a run for his money in the face-recognition race.

That's because Lucy was named Friday as a winner in the "Milk-Bone Make Your Dog Famous Search."

Her fluffy face, clear eyes (one blue, one brown) and winning grin will appear on boxes of Milk-Bone Original Biscuits.

The 5-year-old border collie/Brittany spaniel mix appeared with owner Janet George on NBC's "Today" show.

Christmas Tour Ornament

We have our first picture of the first of eight JNT 2005 ornaments. Click to enlarge.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Cute Interview with LA's

Music: Aiken jolly about Christmas tour, not this interview


What: Clay Aiken's "Joyful Noise" tour.

When: 8 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday.

Where: Kodak Theatre, 6801 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood.

Tickets: $45.50-$80.50 through Ticketmaster, 213-480-3232.

I'm not a fan of Clay Aiken's music. But that's OK. As a 40-year-old male, I'm not exactly his target demographic. I accepted his publicist's offer of an interview because millions of people do like him. A lot.

Besides, judging from the interviews I've read, the 26-year-old "American Idol" runner-up seemed like someone with a healthy sense of himself. So I figured a playful interview would work for both of us.

Things began on a bad foot, however, when his manager got on the line and indicated that Aiken would only be available for 10 minutes. A good Q&A requires at least 15, I explained.

Things got much worse when Aiken hung up two-thirds into this interview, because he didn't feel playful.

I was wrong, it turns out. A good Q&A requires only eight minutes.

Q: Hi, Clay. Where are you right now?

A: I'm in L.A., at rehearsals.

Q: This is your second Christmas tour. Tell me some of what's different about it.

A: It's got a little more theatrical element to it this year. We did an orchestra tour last year. This year we opted to forgo the onstage orchestra and instead use actors and dancers and give it more of a Christmas-y feel, with a story line and a little more activity on stage.

Q: What's the story line?

A: It's got a very typical, traditional Christmas feel to it. I can't tell you too much without giving too much away. It's not "A Christmas Carol" in any way, but there's this character who's not necessarily in the Christmas spirit, and another character helps bring that Christmas spirit back to her.

Q: Is this going to be a regular thing, the Christmas tour?

A: We'd like to continue doing it every year. It's always been my favorite [tour] to do.

Q: Do you want to be the new Burl Ives or something?

A: I don't know. He became a household name and made his mark on American society, so I wouldn't have a problem with that.

Q: Like Burl, you seem to be more popular as a seasonal artist than as a nonseasonal one. I noticed that "Measure of a Man" (Aiken's 2003 CD) is selling used for 75 cents on, while "Merry Christmas With Love" (his 2004 CD) is selling for a full $6.29.

A: Um, well, I think, it's newer. And as we get close to the holiday season, we sell more. But when we put another album out next year, I'm sure it'll change just a little bit.

Q: Ever consider a Hanukkah album? You can call it "Made It Out of Clay."

A: I kind of doubt that'll happen. (laughs)

Q: So why do the chicks dig you so much?

A: I have absolutely no idea. They didn't dig me back when I was in North Carolina. Nowadays when they scream my name because they want to see me or talk to me, I'm kind of surprised. I don't understand it completely.

Q: Does it bother you when people say you didn't work for your fame?

A: No, it doesn't bother me at all because, without a doubt, I've probably worked harder than a lot of people do who've done this, because 'Idol' is not a walk in the park at all. And then trying to get rid of the stigma and trying to maintain any type of momentum off of that show is probably just as hard, if not harder, than someone who comes up a different way.

Q: What would you be doing if not for "American Idol" right now?

A: Teaching, probably. I spent two or three years teaching in an elementary school, so I'm sure I'd continue to do that and maybe one day try to aspire to do something more -- maybe be a principal or something like that.

Q: Do the ex-Idols have a clique -- like a Brat Pack that hangs out?

A: I stay in touch with Ruben (Studdard) and Kimberly Locke from my season, and I'm friends with Kelly (Clarkson) because we toured together. But for the most part, we've all kind of gone our separate ways.

Q: What do you make of that Corey guy and Paula Abdul?

A: Um, I'm not talking about that. You know something? I think that's kind of immature. I'm not gonna get into that whole scandal. There's no reason to discuss that.

Q: Do you think anyone would fool around with Simon Cowell, even to win?

A: You know what? I think we're finished. (click)

Clay on Star! Daily

Clay appeared on Canadian infotainment show Star! Daily today, reports the CB's Ontario Clay Fan:

Clay was just on Star!Daily. It looked like it was filmed in Vancouver- he was wearing the Vale hoodie. Talked about people taking pictures of the produce he buys in the grocery store and also talked some about the next album -wants less angst and more confidence.

I hope someone can catch this on the west coast and cap it. Clay looked good! Very natural.

A download of this can be found here. If the link there fails, try going to this CB thread for other download links.

Oakland Tribune/ Interview

Clay was interviewed by, the online sister of the Oakland Tribune today.

10 minutes on the phone with Clay Aiken
By Leslie Katz, STAFF WRITER

POP SINGER Clay Aiken brings his second "Joyful Noise" tour to Oakland's Paramount Theatre next week. Rehearsing last month in Southern California, the busy Aiken took a 10-minute break for a phone interview.
Q. We hear your new holiday show has theatrical vignettes. Tell us about them.

A. Last year's holiday show was my favorite of the year, and I was thinking, "What else could I do?" In my pajamas, sitting at my computer one day, I had this fancy idea to add theatical elements to the show. My old high school chorus teacher plays a role. But the teacher from my senior year isn't in the show. (He got cut from chorus senior year.)

Editor's note: Each show on Aiken's tour features local thespians. He'll be joined in Oakland by performers -- many from the Tri-Valley area -- who appear with the Pleasanton Playhouse. See above photo.

Q. Where's home? We hear you might be leaving Hollywood.

A. Home's on the bus. I'll be moving back to Raleigh, N.C., to re-establish myself. I sold where I was living in L.A.

Q. Are you working on any new material?

A. We've been working on quite a bit, slipping in what we can slip in (with the busy tour schedule). There was so little time to do the last CD. I've been able to collect a lot of stuff, and now we're looking at the problem of what kind of new album to put out -- it could be Mexican folk songs.

Q. Last year around this time, you had a Top Ten recording, book and concert tour. Was that the first time that happened for any artist?

A. Um, sure. The book was therapeutic, an opportunity for me to reflect, sit down and slow down after such a full year.

Q. Who does your clothes?

A. Who "does" my clothes? I have people who help. I never knew anything about clothes in Raleigh. I went to Structure and I bought myself an outfit I thought was nice -- that was the "before" picture. (The "American Idol" runner-up does say he likes designer Paul Smith and thanks us for complimenting him on the remarkable half-jacket/half T-shirt he wore when he performed in concert with Kelly Clarkson in San Jose.) I'm not known for my fashion sense.

Q. Do you have a dog?

A. Yes, she's a border terrier (named Raleigh) who travels with me on tour.

Q. What are you looking forward to?

A. I know I sound like I'm just trying to publicize my Christmas tour, but it really is an amazing way to culminate the year for me. (Christmas is) a month and half away and I'm already in the mood.

Q. Do you have free time? What do you do?

A. I don't have any free time.

Clay on Cover of Seattle Times' Ticket

After winning a poll last week at, the Seattle Time honoured their promise of putting the winner on the cover of today's special section, called "Ticket", a preview of upcoming concerts in the Seattle area.

The Claymates have vociferously spoken
By Judy Chia Hui Hsu
Seattle Times staff reporter

"American Idol" runner-up Clay Aiken won our you-pick- the-Ticket-cover contest with 78 percent of the vote. He brings his "Joyful Noise 2005" concert to McCaw Hall Sunday.

We asked readers who they'd like to see on the Ticket cover, and the vote was overwhelming!

It's Clay Aiken!

But just as in "American Idol," we have a Clay controversy!

Oh, enough. Exclamations are right at home on a fan Web site, but not the pages of a newspaper. And that brings us to our pick-the-Ticket-cover seattletimes .com poll, which featured four choices: Rob Thomas, Bright Eyes, Clay Aiken and "Chicken Little." Early votes leaned heavily in favor of the chicken, with Bright Eyes a close second. Aiken was dead last.

Then the Clay Aiken fan base got wind of the contest, and it was all over. Fan sites linked directly to the poll, and suddenly we were getting hundreds and hundreds of votes — for Aiken.

Concert preview

Clay Aiken, 8 p.m. Sunday, McCaw Hall at Seattle Center; $49.50-$69.50 (206-628-0888 or; information, 206-684-7200 or Heads up, Claymates.

The red-headed American Idol runner-up descends on McCaw Hall in Seattle Sunday with a holiday show called "Joyful Noise 2005," a follow-up to last year's "Joyful Noise" tour. In addition to a different song list, the tunes will be performed in concert with vignettes written by Aiken.

This year, the Charlotte, N.C., native is playing 40 shows in 36 cities.

"Joyful Noise 2005" features songs from Aiken's 2004 platinum album, "Merry Christmas With Love," and his renditions of a bunch of traditional favorites. In 2004 the CD came in at No. 1 on Billboard's holiday albums chart.

Aiken doesn't just do Christmas, either. His first release, "Measure of a Man" debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 album chart.

Although he did lose to Ruben Studdard on TV, Aiken's still riding the wave of his "American Idol" popularity. Our poll alone is a sign that his fans really do love him. At the final count it was nearly 2,200 votes, 78 percent for Aiken.

OK Aiken fans, you win. Now go buy the paper.

Judy Chia Hui Hsu: 206-464-3315 or

AD: Louisville, KY

Free Image Hosting at

Soaring High on Amazon

Clay's Christmas disc, Merry Christmas with Love is up to the 200's position on Recent articles from Billboard, Rolling Stone and various local newspapers in Canada and the US along with the buzz around the JNT tour is credited with this incredible rise in sales. The disc was the bestselling Christmas CD in 2004, with 1.2 millions copies shipped in week 1.

Tacoma News Tribune Article

You won't catch Clay Aiken sending critics hate mail
Published: November 4th, 2005 03:00 AM

Believe it or not, I get my share of hate mail and calls from vexed readers.
Sure, many of you actually kinda like me. You can admit it; some of you even say as much when you run into me at Hell's Kitchen or The Showbox - right before you tell me that I look 15 in the cheesy mug shot that accompanies this column. But every once in a while the haters come pouring out of the woodwork, ready to pitch me a verbal beat down.

I've had Toby Keith fans accuse me of being part of the so-called liberal media conspiracy. Eminem fans have bashed me on the basis of my presumed sexual orientation. And one rabid Slipknot fan offered to castrate me, an offer I will graciously decline until my health plan ceases covering vasectomies.

But few fan bases have been so enthusiastic in letting me know how lame I am than - drum roll, please - Clay Aiken fans.

Yes, Clay Aiken fans! You know, the spiky-haired guy who finished second on the second season of "American Idol," and who will also headline a holiday show Sunday at Seattle's Marion Oliver McCaw Hall.

A paragraph from a review I wrote about a Kiss-FM holiday show that Aiken appeared in a couple of years back generated no less than 400 bits of hate mail -most, thankfully, of the easily deleted electronic variety.

I brought this up first thing when I got Aiken on the phone recently.

"Uh oh," he replied, with a nervous giggle.

"And I didn't really bash you," I explained.

"Oh, don't clean it up now," he insisted.

"Honestly, I don't think it was that bad," I said. (For the record, I called him a "tease" for singing just a couple of songs at the Kiss show; hardly anything that would live up to "Idol" curmudgeon Simon Cowell.) "But apparently, you had bronchitis."

This prompted Aiken to rattle off his Puget Sound war stories. "Oh gosh! Now you've got me all scared," he said. "The first time I went to Seattle I had an allergic reaction. I'm allergic to nuts. I haven't had a reaction in years, but I actually had one in Seattle."

Besides the Kiss incident, Aiken said he also severely twisted his ankle backstage when he came back with Kelly Clarkson.

"I guess there are some fans in Seattle who think I'll never come back because I have such bad luck," he said. "Just the second-largest number of hate mails? So what was the first?"

A response to a Toby Keith review, I explained.

"My manager also manages in the country arena, and we're all too familiar with him," he said, laughing. "I would like to hope our fans are at least a little bit nicer. But I've heard they can be a bit vehement when they're not happy with a reporter. Hope they didn't hurt you too bad."

Nah. Honestly, hate mail is kind of fun, especially when it's either well-done or really bizarre.

But while that was all good and well, what I really wanted to know was how he felt about the people who were really mean to him – namely the likes of Conan O'Brien, "Mad TV," "Saturday Night Live" and others who have made Aiken the subject of gay jokes since he graduated from "Idol."

"A lot of times I don't find out about these things unless I read them online," Aiken said. "I guess there's a compliment hidden deep within there. If they weren't talkin' about me, I guess it would be worse, wouldn't it? At least when people say mean things they're admitting we're important enough to mention."
Ah, what a wimp. I mean, couldn't he have at least challenged Conan O'Brien to fight on "Celebrity Boxing" or something?

Uh, whoops. Claymates can address their next round of hate mail and calls to ...

Ernest Jasmin: 253-274-7389

Jaymes Foster-Levy's Fanclub Post

Jaymes Foster-Levy posted this yesterday at the official fanclub. We have obtained special permission to share this with you all.

Posted: 03 Nov 2005 21:06 Post subject: JNT05 clarifications (Jaymes Foster)
It's been very interesting, after being gone from the boards for so long, to return to read the posts regarding Joyful Noise 2005. I know that there is a good chance that there will be a lot of contention after I make my comments, but Clay suggested that I go for it, so I will.

By working with Clay throughout his writing, directing, and rehearsing process, I have had a great opportunity to watch the evolution of this show, and understand the motivation of the concept and story arch that Clay has created. Please understand that these "notes" I give are not intended to tell anyone how to view the show. We all know that Clay would want each person to interpret it their own way. However, there are a few things that I have noticed while reading the posts on here that I feel might benefit from some clarification and insight into the true storyline of the show.

(1) There seems to be an interpretation, from what I have read, that Clay acts as the "director" of the show. In fact, this is not the intention. In truth, Clay, Angela, Jacob, and Quiana all play the role of "guardian angel" type characters who look after Beverly. Clay is a "lead angel" of sorts, and as you see him in the "flashback" scenes where Beverly is younger and she is meeting her husband for the first time, he has been with Beverly for her entire life. He was there in the dance hall and placed the ornament on the tree for her husband to give to her. He was there in the room when she and her son made cookies together when he was a child. He was there when she made cookies with Tommy. It's his character's work that allows Beverly to see that Christmas should be celebrated even without family present. In a sense, his character brings Tommy to Beverly's doorstep.

(2) This show IS Clay's personality. As someone who has been fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to get to know Clay, I honestly can say that his personality shows through the words and acts of the characters more so perhaps than any other way we have seen. For me it was a tough thing to get used to, as well. As the rehearsal process progressed, I thought myself that this show may be lacking the "banter" and conversational style that we have all grown so accustomed to with Clay. I mentioned this to him, and he was very adamant that he wanted this show to be different. He knew that it would be a change, but he really wanted to try to express himself in a different way. It was, and still is, very important to him that his message, his script, and the storyline that he worked so hard on be heard through the characters on stage. It's a change. But it's what he wanted.

I know that for the most part, I am writing this to people who do grasp the concepts I talked about above. I'm sure many of you caught on and interpreted these elements in the way that they were intended by Clay. However, many comments that I have read are to the contrary, and Clay tells me that this message board is the best way to get the word out.

I think that it's important that we allow Clay to grow and develop as an artist. I know that it would concern him if he thought that people were not pleased by the show that he has worked so hard on. (And trust me, he worked harder on this show than he has on almost anything else.) But he would also be disheartened to think that his fans, who are of the utmost importance to him, have come to expect so much of him that they are unwilling to allow him to try something new.

I'll prepare for the imminent backlash, but...On his behalf, I encourage you to watch this show for what it is. Not a simple concert, but a full WORK.
Pay close attention to the characters. Pay close attention to the dancers. Pay close attention to the "backflashes" (shown in red lighting). They say so much about both Clay, and the story he wants to tell you.

This show is an entire piece of art that Clay has crafted for you, that can't be enjoyed in pieces, but must truly be enjoyed as a whole in order to be appreciated.

Jaymes Foster

Thursday, November 03, 2005

National Post Article

This article appeared in Canada's National Post (equivilent to USA Today, NY Times...) newspaper as well as its affilates the Ottawa Citizen, Vancouver Province, Calgary Herald, and more...

Clay Aiken's Christmas show bespeaks his confidence
Idol star gets in the Christmas spirit

Clay Aiken loves Christmas. "It's a Christmas show!" he exclaims of the Joyful Noise Tour, which is 40 shows long, starting last night in Vancouver. "That's what we love to do. We're trying to start it early. Even though we are starting early, we try to get people in the spirit." Shouldn't be hard. If everybody survived Halloween, the shift into Christmas has already begun. The ornaments are out, the sales campaigns are prepared. Aiken's Christmas CD, Merry Christmas With Love, was the biggest-selling Christmas CD of 2004. He knows people need some uplifting news. What with tsunamis, hurricanes and earthquakes, Christmas can't come too soon. "Our tour went so well last year, we decided to do it again," Aiken explains. "Christmas is my favourite holiday. I would do this show all year." It's the singer's sixth tour since becoming the most famous runner-up on the TV series American Idol in 2003. He's made a few records, notably the single Bridge Over Troubled Waters, but a Christmas album so soon bespeaks his confidence. You might conclude he is very ambitious -- why else would he enter American Idol unless he had vision? "It's an opportunity to do what I've always wanted to do," observes the 25-year-old Raleigh, N.C., singer. "I don't ever want to get to the point where I think, 'Oh man, I wish I'd done this or had done that.' " Aiken is trying to keep the show as fresh as possible, programming his concert with actors and dancers who will tell a story written by Aiken himself. As well, he has shaken up the set list and will do some songs that aren't on his album. The Christmas theme, then might be a suprise, as it's usually a domain inhabited by singers with longer careers, but maybe it's Aiken's way of establishing his name. "Some people think we're not performers," he says. "...I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for that show. At the same time, you want to be recognized as an individual, not the guy who was a runner-up on American Idol."

JNT2005 Tourbook

Click to enlarge these beautiful pictures from the Joyful Noise Tourbook!

Interview with K103 Portland

Today's interview with K103 in Portland is up at K103's website. You can listen to it here by right clicking and clicking save target as. Clay talked about the concert and the storyline it has as well as what he had on his iPod (demos and Christmas music) and said his favourite food was Italian.

Transcript courtesy MissMobius:

Clay - Portland Oregon, radio interview Nov.03/05

CLAY: Christmas concert is a little bigger this year than last year.

I loved last year's show so much, and while we were doing it I kept thinking

we should have done this or that if we

got to do it again next year.

This year it's wrapped around a story line that was

written by me in my pajamas.

Radio announcer: It sounds like a pagent.

Clay: Maybe it is some kind of a pagent.

RA: Sounds like a school pagent.

CLAY: I guess it could be kind of a pagent with a

religious aspect. It's not a nativity.

RA: I was a donkey at my school pagent. Is there a donkey?

Clay: No, no part for donkey in it.

RA: What are some of the songs?

CLAY: MCWL, songs appropriate for the story line

It's kind of weird rehearsing Christmas songs, last year recorded MCWL in May

This year I'm actually starting later.

Christmas is my fave time of the year.

This is the 5th tour in the past 2 years.

The stage is very decked out, we decked our halls.

RA: You still watch Idol?

CLAY: It's not on now,

when I get a chance I do. I really haven't had a lot of chances.

RA: What is Paula like on the show?

CLAY: PaulA is very sweet.

Simon is a nice guy, pretty good fella, it's his job. He doesn't do it in a mean way. His personality on camera is the same as off camera.

RA: What do you have in your Ipod?

CLAY: In my Ipod I have all Christmas music, and possible songs for upcoming album.

also full of demos and Christmas music.

RA: What kind of food do you like? I'm taking you to dinner and paying for it.

CLAY: You're paying?

Italian is my favourite food.

RA: The best Italian's place is Spaghetti Factory,,,

You have a great show now

CLAY: Thanks so much.

Scans from Nov/Dec Today's Christian Magazine

Scans from the Nov./Dec. issue of Today's Christian are in. Clay is the coverboy, as we previously reported. Click the enlarge. Many thanks to GreaseMeUpClay for these.

Rolling Stone Magazine JNT Article

Clay Aiken Spreads Joy
Crooner launches holiday tour, readies next record

Halloween has only just ended, but Clay Aiken will kick off his second annual holiday tour in support of last year's Merry Christmas With Love tonight in Vancouver. The 2005 edition of the Joyful Noise Tour will bring the 2003 American Idol runner-up to thirty-six cities, closing with a pair of dates in Clearwater, Florida, on December 29th and 30th.
"You'd think I'd be Christmased-out," says Aiken, "but being on the road for two months is really a great buildup for the holidays."

Not content to merely relive his Christmas past, the pop crooner has made some big changes to the festive show, scrapping the thirty-piece orchestra in favor of a musical-theater presentation. "It's an original story, in that I sat in my pajamas one day and wrote it," he says, laughing. "But it follows the same type of story arc that you might expect at Christmas: One character is not too thrilled with the holiday, and another character helps bring the Christmas spirit to that person."

Joining Aiken onstage will be his former high-school choir teacher in one of the lead roles, as well as an eleven-year-old boy who auditioned in Aiken's native North Carolina. According to the singer, community theater groups in each city will round out the cast "to give it a local flavor."

Speaking of, there will also be city-specific Clay Aiken Christmas tree ornaments available at each show. "It's feasible that someone could decorate their entire Christmas tree this year with forty different ones," says Aiken. And will he? "I don't know if I'm that narcissistic."

When the tour concludes, Aiken will get back to work on his new studio album, the proper follow-up to his post-Idol rush job, 2003's Measure of a Man, which went multiplatinum. For the past five months, he's been working in Los Angeles with Jaymes Foster-Levy, sister of acclaimed producer David Foster (Celine Dion, Whitney Houston), taking his time sifting through song submissions with hopes of releasing the collection during the first half of next year.

"I'm not much of a writer," he admits. "I can pull off a few lines in a song -- and I know there are a lot of people out there nowadays who say they've written a song and that means they've written a line or so. I may go in and change a line or two myself, but I don't think it's fair to take credit. But, this time, I do want to make sure that what I sing represents something that I know something about, and something I feel."

Clay Aiken tour dates:

11/2: Vancouver, Queen Elizabeth Theatre
11/3: Portland, OR, Rose Garden Arena
11/5: Eugene, OR, Hult Center For Performing Arts
11/6: Seattle, Marion Oliver McCaw Hall
11/8: Oakland, CA, Paramount Theatre
11/9: Los Angeles, Kodak Theatre
11/10: Los Angeles, Kodak Theatre
11/11: San Diego, San Diego Civic Theatre
11/13: Phoenix, Dodge Theatre
11/15: Salt Lake City, Delta Center
11/16: Denver, Colorado Convention Center
11/18: Council Bluffs, IA, Mid-America Center
11/19: Kansas City, Midland Theatre
11/21: Minneapolis, Northrop Auditorium
11/22: Chicago, Chicago Theatre
11/25: Louisville, Louisville Palace
11/26: Cincinnati, Cincinnati Music Hall
11/27: Youngstown, OH, Convocation Center
11/29: Pittsburgh, Heinz Hall
11/30: Reading, PA, Sovereign Center
12/2: New York City, Beacon Theatre
12/3: New York City, Beacon Theatre
12/4: New York City, Beacon Theatre
12/6: Boston, Orpheum Theatre
12/8: Albany, Palace Theatre
12/9: Providence, RI, Providence Performing Arts Center
12/10: Wallingford, CT, Chevrolet Theatre
12/11: Camden, NJ, Tweeter Center
12/13: Washington, DC, DAR Constitution Hall
12/14: Baltimore, Lyric Opera House
12/16: Nashville, Gaylord Entertainment Center
12/17: Atlanta, Atlanta Civic Ctr. Theatre
12/18: Pensacola, FL, Pensacola Civic Center
12/20: Columbia, SC, Township Auditorium
12/21: Charlotte, NC, Charlottte Bobcats Arena
12/22: Raleigh, NC, RBC Center
12/27: Hollywood, FL, Seminole Hard Rock Live
12/28: Melbourne, FL, Maxwell C. King Center
12/29: Clearwater, FL, Ruth Eckerd Hall
12/30: Clearwater, FL, Ruth Eckerd Hall

(Posted Nov 02, 2005)

In Brief: JNT 2005

We're going to brief you on some main highlights of last night's debut JNT2005 Concert in Vancouver. For complete coverage of JNT, visit our special JNT2005 blog.

  • Setlist can be seen here
  • Clay 'not the center of attention'
  • Clay plays active role throughout concert, directing the play/storyline and singing
  • Setlist comprimised of mostly old songs from last year's tour.
  • Clay growled. LOL
  • Calm concert
  • Clay asked for no flashes.

JNT Setlist

The JNT Setlist has been posted!

Merry Christmas With Love
Sleigh Ride
Jingle Bells
Christmas Serenade
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
Christmas Waltz
Silver Bells (duet with Allison Lawrence)
The Christmas Waltz
I Miss You Most at Christmas (Angela)
Celebrate Me Home


O Holy Night
The First Noel
Hark the Herald Angels Sing
O Come All Ye Faithful
O Come O Come Emmanuel (Jacob)
Mary Did You Know
My Grown Up Christmas Wish (Quiana)
Don't Save it All For Christmas Day
Good News Article On JNT

Aiken Celebrates Holidays, Preps New Album

November 03, 2005, 11:15 AM ET

John Benson, Cleveland
Not that he became bored on last year's Joyful Noise Tour, but Clay Aiken made a discovery during his 2004 holiday outing that he hopes has improved this year's seasonal run, which visits Portland, Ore., tonight (Nov. 3).

"As you begin to do 20 or 30 shows, they start to become rote in a way and you're able to step out of your body sometimes and take a look," Aiken tells "And I thought, 'This is beautiful but it's Christmas music. What are we going to do with Christmas music that is original?' So [then] I thought, 'What if we can figure out a way to make all of these songs mean something?'"

Aiken's show remains the same as last year's run in support of the RCA album "Merry Christmas with Love," in the sense it is divided between secular material in the first half and religious songs in the second. But this year, the 2003 "American Idol" runner-up decided to replace the full orchestra with actors and dancers performing a holiday narrative during the first portion. He even hired his former high school choir teacher, Alison Lawrence, to play the lead role.

Once the holiday tour wraps up, the 26-year-old artist will finish up recording the follow-up to his multi-platinum 2003 debut disc, "Measure of a Man." With some songs already recorded, "Just You" and "Back for More" were previewed by Aiken during his summer tour. He says the new album should be out in the first half of 2006.

"The first album was really rushed," he says. "[That was] not really anybody's fault, but it was kind of intended to be because of the nature of what it was. And this time, we've had extra time to try to make sure we find the right songs. We're in position now where we have a lot of good stuff and we're going to get a chance to pick the best of the best."

Aiken admits that while he's been encouraged to do a little songwriting on his own, he's conflicted with the entire process.

"I feel differently about it than I think most people do," Aiken says. "Honestly, a lot of artists that you see -- I'm going to get people mad at me but I've been doing that a lot lately so I might as well keep on -- who have written songs on their album, the truth is they probably just went in changed a word here or there. And if they are big enough artists, they get credit for writing the song. I'm not going to do that. If you see my name on it, I've had at least some type of real role in writing it."

He adds, "And that said, I'm not as good at writing songs as Alicia Keys or those people who are just really great at doing that. So, why not take advantage of what they do and really just get really great songs from people who can write for me?"

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Heads Up - Portland Interview Thursday Morning

Don't forget Clay's inteview with K103 FM Portland tomorrow morning at 7 AM PT/10 AM ET. You can listen to the interview via K103's website.

State Farm and BAF Announce Partnership Beginning with $1.5 Million Donation

The Bubel Aiken Foundation got a big boost from America's 'good neighbour'. The State Farm insurance company has given the foundation a 3 year, $1.5 Million grant to help it develop a primary education curriculum. The BAF is currently undergoing a major re-branding. Clay hopes to make it one of America's most recognizable charitable organizations in the near future.

Press release from: State Farm Life Insurance Company
America's ''Good Neighbor'' Teams up with Recording Artist Clay Aiken's Bubel/Aiken Foundation to Promote Inclusive Education

(CSRwire) Bloomington, IL -- Recording star Clay Aiken and State Farm Insurance(R) are making beautiful music by working in concert to help children of all levels of ability be more included in the educational system. State Farm has granted $1.5 million dollars to Clay's foundation, The Bubel/Aiken Foundation to help develop a primary education curriculum focused on teaching social and life skills through service to children of all levels of ability. The State Farm-Bubel/Aiken team hopes that by teaching the language of diverse abilities, communities will be supported in viewing children with disabilities as contributors and active members of society.

"State Farm's three-year grant to The Bubel/Aiken Foundation will allow the development of a curriculum that provides ideas and strategies that will engage children of all abilities in giving back to their communities," says Kathy Payne, State Farm Community Alliances Assistant Director. "The curriculum will be developed in three stages with the first year of the project focused on kindergarten through fourth grade. As we move forward, well be able to share ideas that connect well with State Farm's focus on community development, safety and education."

A key supporter of service-learning--a teaching strategy that connects real-world applications of learning to school curricula -- State Farm has combined efforts with The Bubel/Aiken Foundation as a reflection of its strong commitment to education and to community partnerships that foster collaborative environments for all ages.

"The Bubel/Aiken Foundation will create innovative materials that embrace the philosophy of inclusion and support educators that work with children with and without disabilities. This curriculum will create awareness and change behaviors by educating individuals about what young people of ALL abilities are capable of doing,"says Kristy Barnes, Chief Operating Officer.

The Bubel/Aiken Foundation was created by Aiken in 2003 to serve children with developmental disabilities by creating, implementing, and funding programs of inclusion in the social, educational, recreational, vocational, and community settings. By combining his history of working with children with disabilities and his degree in special education, Clay has used his celebrity to further the causes of education and inclusion. In addition, schools, after-school and community programs, such as those held at various YMCA's, will be able to use this curriculum to educate young people who are eager to work collaboratively with their peers in a positive way.

About State Farm
State Farm(R) insures more cars than any other insurer in North America and is the leading U.S. home insurer. State Farm's 17,000 agents and 69,000 employees serve nearly 73 million auto, fire, life and health policies in the United States and Canada. State Farm also offers financial services products through State Farm Bank(R). State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No.19 on the Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit or in Canada

About The Bubel/Aiken Foundation
The Bubel/Aiken Foundation provides services and financial assistance to promote the full integration of children with disabilities into the life environment of those without. The Foundation strives to create awareness about the diversity of individuals with disabilities and the possibilities that inclusion can bring. To learn more about The Bubel/Aiken Foundation or ways to get involved visit their Web site at

Seattle Weekly/Clay Wins Seattle Times Poll

Seattle Weekly tells us Clay overwhelmed the Seattle Time's website poll put up last Friday asking which concert Seattlers were most looking forward to. Clay won the poll with an astounding 80%, which will land him on the Nov. 4 cover of the Time's weekly concert guide called Ticket.

Seattle Weekly

It was a big week for local fans of Clay Aiken. First, they made joyful noise at the departure of Aiken-bashing Seattle Weekly staffer Steve Wiecking (see Letters). Then they united to put Aiken's cute, freckled face on the cover of The Seattle Times' Ticket section this Friday, Nov. 4. In a Times reader poll, a whopping 80 percent voted to award the spot of honor on the paper's Friday entertainment guide to the American Idol loser. (Take that, Steve!) Of the choices offered in the poll (including Matchbox Twenty's Rob Thomas and Disney's Chicken Little), we would've preferred the indie musician Bright Eyes--but that's why we at Seattle Weekly hog the editing duties ourselves and don't let readers vote. . . . In other Weekly news, we welcome arts writer Sue Peters to our staff. Peters, who has worked for San Francisco Chronicle Publishing and Salon, among other publications, will cover visual arts for the paper. LYNN JACOBSON

KEX Radio DJ Apologizes for Diss

From the CB:

Paul Linnman, on KEX radio apparently "dissed" Clay yesterday when he mentioned winning Clay tickets in a station Halloween costume contest and how he didn't want to go to the concert. One of the nwclayfans immediately e-mailed Paul, and he apologized in an e-mail to her and said that he would address it this morning. Well, he did just mention it, and said that he had received e-mails praising Clay, and that he was wrong to diss somebody that he hadn't heard. He also said that the next 1/2 hour was going to be about Clay. Invisible played as he spoke. Portland fans, turn into KEX NOW!!!

(Paul is still talking about Clay!!)


Paul just went on and on talking about Clay and his great fans, and possibly might donate his tickets to the prize package tomorrow morning-call to win!!! His co-host really PRAISED Clay-whoo hoo!

Vancouver Province Serves Up 2 Articles

The Vancouver Province today published, not 1, but 2 article about Clay! Clay performs tonight at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre in Vancouver, kicking off his sixth national tour - the Joyful Noise Tour 2005. Clay was also featured on the paper's Arts section front page (left).
1st article:

Local Claymates throw bash to celebrate hero
Stuart Derdeyn
The Province
November 2, 2005

Left: Kelly Bond and her seven-year-old daughter Alora are big Clay Aiken fans.


A Clay Family Christmas

Where: Seymour Room, The Bay, 674 Granville St.

When: Today from 5-8 p.m.

Tickets: $15, pre-register at

- - -

He may be satirized as the uber-geek on Mad TV but, to his devoted followers, Clay Aiken is the the man all others are measured by.

To celebrate the Vancouver debut of American Idol's No. 1 loser, local fans -- Claymates -- are throwing a bash with dinner, videos and prizes to celebrate Aiken's Joyful Noise tour.

Event committee member Kelly Bond is hosting Clay-boys and girls from across North America attending the local date opening a 36-city tour, the sixth cross-country slog by the multi-platinum artist since 2003.

"I only watched American Idol's second season because I'd broken my ankle," says Bond. "About halfway through his appearance on the show, I became a fan."

It's been about 18 months since Aiken last played this region, appearing in Seattle with Kelly Clarkson.

"Northwestern Claymates are thrilled to be part of this tour which was highly successful last year. That time, he had orchestras and choirs."

"This year, he has dropped the choirs but made the show more theatrical with some vignettes."

Among the actors on the road with Aiken is a young boy who the singer, a licensed teacher in his home state of North Carolina, is tutoring. These kinds of acts, his campaigning for the Bubel-Aiken Foundation for children with developmental challenges and his professed Christianity connect with Claymates as much as his music.

"He's got a charisma, for sure, and a uniqueness that he brings to every performance that connects with the audience. He's got that geeky little boy in all of us that rose above it all."

- - -


Name: Clayton Holmes Grissom

Born: Nov. 30, 1978

Hometown: Raleigh, N.C.

Education: B.Ed Special Education

Albums: Measure of a Man (Oct. '03) -- fastest-selling solo debut in a decade at time of release; Merry Christmas With Love (Nov. '04) -- fastest-selling holiday album since '91, tied with Celine Dion for highest chart debut (No. 4) by a holiday-themed album.

Books: Learning To Sing: Hearing the Music In Your Life (Random House, co-authored with Allison Glock). Paperback version due out in November

TV: Host of Saturday Night Live (Feb. '04); A Clay Aiken Christmas (Dec. '04); Kenny on Scrubs (Feb. '05)

Tours: Independent Tour (with Kelly Clarkson, Feb.-April '04); Not-A-Tour (Summer '04); The Joyful Noise Tour (Nov. '04); Jukebox Tour (Summer '05); Joyful Noise 2 (Nov. '05)
© The Vancouver Province 2005

2nd article:
Clay bells ring for his holiday tour
Aiken launches Christmas shows in Vancouver
Tom Harrison
The Province

Wednesday, November 02, 2005


Clay Aiken

Where: Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Georgia and Hamilton

When: Tonight at 9:30

Tickets: $49.50-$89.50 at Ticketmaster

- - -

Clay Aiken loves Christmas.

"It's a Christmas show!" he exclaims of the Joyful Noise Tour, which is 40 shows long, starting tonight in Vancouver.

"That's what we love to do. We're trying to start it early. Even though we are starting early, we try to get people in the spirit."

Shouldn't be hard. If everybody survived Halloween, the shift into Christmas already has begun. The ornaments are out, the sales campaigns are prepared.

At The Province, we've seen the catalogues of Christmas music and have started to receive Christmas CDs.

And why not? Aiken's Christmas CD, Merry Christmas With Love, was the biggest-selling Christmas album of 2004.

He knows people need some uplifting news. What with tsunamis, hurricanes and earthquakes, Christmas can't come too soon.

"Our tour went so well last year, we decided to do it again," Aiken says.

"Christmas is my favourite holiday. I would do this show all year."

There are differences. It's actually the singer's sixth tour since becoming the most-famous runner-up on the TV series American Idol in 2003. He's made a few records, notably the single "Bridge Over Troubled Waters," but a Christmas album so soon bespeaks his confidence, as does performing on previous tours with symphony orchestras.

You might conclude that he is very ambitious -- why else would he enter American Idol unless he had vision? -- but Aiken's vision isn't ours.

"It's an opportunity to do what I've always wanted to do," says the 25- year-old Raleigh, N.C., singer. "I don't ever want to get to the point where I think, 'Oh man, I wish I'd done this, or had done that.'"

Those differences. As Vancouver didn't see last year's show, Aiken's effort to keep the show as "fresh as possible," won't mean much, but he has programmed his concert with actors and dancers who will tell a story of Christmas written by Aiken himself. As well, he has shaken up the set list and will do some songs that aren't on his album.

The Christmas theme, then, might be a surprise, as it's usually a domain inhabited by singers with longer careers, but maybe it's Aiken's way of establishing his name.

"Some people think we're not performers and we can't alienate people," he says. "I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for that show. At the same time, you want to be recognized as an individual, not the guy who was a runner-up on American Idol."
© The Vancouver Province 2005

Clay in Emmy Magazine

A picture of Clay (seen here) reporting for The Insider at the Emmy's this past September (more info can be found in our September archives) was published in the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences's official magazine called Emmy Magazine. The issue is Issue No. 5.

Joyful Noise Starts Tonight

Clay's sixth national tour kicks off tonight at 9:30 PM PST at Vancouver's Queen Elizabeth Theater. The tour hits over 35 cities in the US, in addition to the lone Canadian date tonight. CDD has a special section set up where we will post the latest news from the tour each and every day. Recaps and links to photo galleries will also be posted daily.

Check it out.

Claymate Lashes Out At Seattle Weekly

In response to Seattle Weekly columnist Steve Wiecking's Oct. 5 article.

Nasty to the End

I personally hope that Steve Wiecking finds another line of work, as he seems to rely on negativity and nasty comments in the name of journalism [Small World, "Goodbye," Oct. 26]. I am a Clay Aiken fan, and nothing that anyone could say would ever change that. I just can't understand why people like Steve feel the need to make fun of Clay and other stars. When I was in school, this was the definition of a "bully." I was taught by my parents that if you can't say something good about somebody, then don't say anything at all. Steve evidently wasn't taught the same thing, or maybe he was just doing it to get attention. "Bullies" do that, too. I'm glad he's gone and hope he stays gone. The only good thing that I can say about him is that he stayed true to himself-he was nasty to the end!

Susan Baker
Churchville, VA

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

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Dose Magazine

Click to enlage

Dose Magazine, a free daily published in major Canadian cities had a full page feature on Claynadian claymates. The paper talked with the CB's reneeflower (renee wants us to note that all the Clay-lingo used in the article was added by the writer who snooped around various message boards)
Jennifer Zurowski

If you have a "claydar" (that's Clay Aiken fans' slang for radar), it's going bonkers. The American Idol season 2 runner-up is nearby. The thin, freckle-faced singer arrives in Vancouver Wednesday to kick off his 35-city Joyful Noise Tour.

These days, it seems Clay is better known for the fan following he has acquired than what he has achieved in his career since the competition. Not only have hordes of fans from all over the world desperately tried to tour his former home that was up for sale, they have also bombarded U.S. syndicated radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh after he spoke negatively about their beloved Clay.

These stories often overshadow the fact that he has become a multi-platinum selling artist, and has enjoyed such touring success that he is now embarking on his sixth tour in less than two years. Many don't see the attraction and can't figure out why he hasn't faded out of the limelight after Idol ended. Yet the hundreds of fan sites online are proof he's not going anywhere anytime soon.

Fans even have their own Clay lingo online, called a VoCLAYbulary. Kelly Bond, Vancouver fan and event coordinator for the BC Claynadians (what Canadian Clay fans call themselves), broke down -- in their own language -- what being a "Claynadian" is all about.

They never forget their BirthClay

Kelly distinctly remembers the day she became a Clay fan. The 35-year-old homemaker and mother of two had broken her ankle around the time American Idol season 2 started and she got sucked into the show to occupy her evenings. When he sang the Bee Gee's cover "To Love Somebody" was the moment she was Clayverted.

They join AcClayaholics Claynonymous

There are many, many Clay-addicted groups of fans all over the world to join online. It has become tradition to have pre-concert parties, and the Vancouver group will be holding a bash on November 2nd called "A Clay Family Christmas" that will have attendees from all over North America.

They are often Clayby Boomers

Kelly says Clay appeals to both sexes and people of all ages, but the majority of fans are middle-aged women. She says they often have more time to spend on chat sites and money to spend on Clack (see below).

They buy Clack

Anything Clay-related is snapped up with drug addiction-like speed. The tuxedo, shoes and cufflinks he wore at the 2005 Emmy Awards went for an amazing $27,250 at the Clothes Off Our Back charity auction.

They are attracted to his Clayrisma and Clayrity

Kelly says that his fans "came for the voice, but stayed for the man." His clear voice initially attracted them to him, but it was his sweet and kind spirit that made them true fans.

They have a Claybligation

Clay fans feel strongly about supporting anything and everything he does, including his charity the Bubel-Aiken Foundation, which raises money for disabled children. Kelly herself started a penny drive called "Penny Lane" that raised $24,805.64 for the foundation in 2004.

They do some Clayzy stuff

The craziest thing Kelly has heard of fans doing was clipping bits of grass from his mother's front lawn. But she is sensitive to the label "crazy." She'd rather be referred to as "enthusiastic."

They Clayber people who are Claythiest

Clay fans tend to clobber people with e-mail who are non-Clay believers/supporters. If you're feeling bored, post a slanderous message about Clay on a blog. You'll have hundreds of e-mails in your inbox before you know it!

Find out more about the Claynadians at

World Vision Giving WOW Christmas to Donators

World Vision announced in conjunction with Word Records today that it will give donators who donate more than $20 the 2005 WOW Christmas CD which Clay's Mary Did You Know is featured on. Read more...

Mercury News Article

California's Mercury News published a very short article about AI's alumnis and had this to say about Clay.

Clay Aiken: OK, so Ruben took the prize, but Clay is still making his way to the top. Aiken just launched his second holiday tour, "Joyful Noise." He's also stumping for UNICEF and working as a reporter for the TV series "The Insider."

Interview With Oregon Live - Recording For Sophomore Album Done

Deck the halls: Clay's on his way
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
Oregon Live

Clay Aiken had so much fun on last year's tour for his holiday album, "Merry Christmas With Love," that "American Idol's" most famous loser is on another Christmas jaunt, which jingle-jangles its way to the Rose Garden Theater of the Clouds on Thursday.

Why another Christmas tour?

Because I love it. Last year was my favorite tour ever. I decided to do a Christmas tour to support the disc, and the tour did very well. I loved that it was in auditoriums. It's a lot more intimate of an environment than the amphitheaters I did when I went out with Kelly (Clarkson).

How will it be different?

Last year I performed with local orchestras. This year I'm working with local actors. There is a dramatic story line which runs throughout the show. The music and my performance is a soundtrack to that story line.

Have you almost completed your next album?

Not quite. We're in an interesting quandary. A number of songs have been recorded. It's a matter of what we should keep. There are a couple of different ways we can go. I've recorded some traditional Top 40, minus the hip-hop, some adult contemporary and some covers. If it's going to be a theme, do I want it to be favorite love songs? The good thing is that the songs are recorded. The only way I'll record more is if our theme is Mongolian polka. Then I'll have to record some new songs.

"A.I." arbiter of taste Simon Cowell recently noted that 2005 "American Idol" winner Carrie Underwood had the most commercial potential of any "A.I." alum.

I think you should go back and listen to that again. Simon's remark was that she had the most commercial potential of any "American Idol" winner. I'm fine with that, since I didn't win (laughs). I think Carrie is very talented. She's great. I picked her from the beginning of last year's "American Idol." I'm not threatened by her. She's obviously in a different area as far as music goes.

Will your name always be associated with "American Idol"?

When the show is over, probably not. The show has a potential to last a while, so I expect to be tied to it for the time being.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that you berated a New Jersey high school choir you hired for a show. The story also claimed that you didn't give the kids meal breaks or pay them. True or false?

I don't comment on that story often since I don't like to give credence to anybody's made-up stories. . . . For the record, what was in that article was fabricated to the extent that we laughed very loudly when we read it. We were very surprised. You can't get mad about something that's not true. There's no reason for me to fight and bring it up. We didn't try to defend ourselves against anything so preposterous. I spent a number of years as a teacher. I have a feeling they wouldn't let me teach if I was the kind of person who would do such things to children.

Speaking of teaching, you've said in past interviews that you wish that you were molding young minds. Any chance you'll take a hiatus from singing for teaching?

I do hear about friends' classrooms, and I get sentimental about teaching. But I'm combining the best of both worlds for this tour. On this tour we have an actor, a young boy. The child has to be tutored. We opted to hire out of North Carolina, since I can tutor him. I'm still a teacher in North Carolina. I'm able to teach on the road. So I'm up teaching every morning at 8:30 a.m. I'm fixing up lesson plans. I couldn't be happier.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Insider Previews Joyful Noise Tour

The Insider went 'inside' Clay's Joyful Noise Tour today, showing a 2 minute segment from rehearsals. Clay showed viewers the snow machine ("It's not Christmas without snow", said Clay) and the incredible new set which includes a house with a door that bears Clay's competitor number from American Idol (5230). Clay also revealed that he wrote the entire script for the concert, which will feature a storyline, while in his PJs! Clay's old high school teacher and 11 year old Gregory Ellis were cast to be part of the storyline. Clay also said he was excited to have Gregory on the tour because he could be a teacher again. Clay was shown singing Merry Christmas With Love. Claymates can e-mail Clay via The Insider.

Screencaps are available here.

Video now available via ATCA.

E-Talk Daily Shows New Footage from Uganda

Clay appeared on tonight's edition of CTV's E-Talk Daily(aired on the main CTV network in Canada at 7 PM Local, 10:30 PM Central Time and at 7:30 PM on the Talk TV cable channel). The interview was conducted when Clay stopped in Toronto in August for the Jukebox Tour. Video now available via ATCA.

Recap courtesy CB's passionate:

Okay, just saw it. Under a minute but really good. Brand new footage from Uganda.

It's additional stuff from the Aug. 25 interview in Toronto. Clay talks about how everybody thinks that the problem in Africa is that children are starving due to famine and no one is being vocal about this situation.

Clips of Clay walking through a village and helping to pump water, playing with the children, also in a room where children are sleeping while he says it's hard to watch children living in such conditions. I don't think we've seen any of this before and I hope it's a sign we'll be seeing more.

Clayboard UNICEF Trick-Or-Treat Campaign a Success

The Clayboard's 2005 Trick-Or-Treat campaign for UNICEF has surpassed their own goals by almost $3000. The Clayboard's initial goal was for it to raise $5000 for UNICEF, who named Clay as it's 2005 TOT spokesperson earlier this year. Today, the total amount raised by the 58 Clayboard members in the campaign was at $7,852.00. Congratulations to the Clayboard!

Clay on CTV's E-Talk Daily Today

Claynadian readers! The Clackhouse reports that Clay will be on tonight's E-Talk Daily (CTV at 7 PM in most time zones).

E-talk Daily just had a preview for tonight in the noon news with a chat with
Clay, about his work with UNICEF, with clips of Uganda trip. He says, "I never
wanted to be a singer. Definitely music is extremely important, I love doing it,
but I think it is the enabler to do bigger things." Sounds like the interview
was done about the time of the TVG, but aired now to coincide with the UNICEF
Hallowen campaign.

"Clay is the Sexiest Man" Claymates to USA Today

USA Today columnist Whitney Matheson received a flood of e-mails from Claymates after Mrs. Matheson attempted to guess People magazine's sexiest man alive 2005 list by making her own list that Clay did not make.

Cruise news: I'm still combing through the hundreds of e-mails I got about yesterday's Pop Candy-- it seems a Clay Aiken fan club got wind of the column, so I'm now being barraged by messages claiming he's the sexiest man alive.

Regis & Kelly Offend Clay Fans

In a disgusting display on today's edition of Live With Regis & Kelly, the hosts dressed up as Clay and American Idol 4 Runner Up Bo Bice before the two hosts began kissing each other. Clay last appeared on the show in September 2004 to accept a Relly Award given out by the show each year.

New BAF Website Launched is the new website of the Bubel Aiken Foundation! The website was designed by the Anoroc agency, who also worked on the new logo as well as the old website/logo. Congratulations Clay and the Bubel Aiken Foundation on your re-branding!

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The Insider, Backstage With Clay

TV Infotainment show The Insider went backstage in today's episode with Clay's Joyful Noise 2005 Tour. This airs in most markets after the evening news cast. Check local listings. Clay reported in September for The Insider from the 2005 Emmy's and the Dancing with The Stars danceoff. This write up was posted on their website. Note... You can contact Clay through their website, and see a video clip so check it out!

Backstage with Clay Aiken

If you would like to send a message to Clay, click here.

Today might be Halloween, but CLAY AIKEN is already getting into the Christmas spirit, as he prepares for his second holiday tour.

Following the success of last year's tour in support of the festive album Merry Christmas With Love, "we immediately began saying, let's do it again, let's do it again, and make it bigger and better," says Clay during a rehearsal break. "I called my manager up and said, 'I've got this great idea. I want to get some actors next year and I want to do a story to go along with it."

Part concert, part play, the former "American Idol" finalist explains that the music featured in the show "is really a soundtrack" to the action taking place on stage. "It all kind of melds together."

But Clay isn't just singing for his supper. He's also utilizing his teaching background to tutor GREGORY ELLIS, one of the young boys in the production.

"I'm having so much fun with it," says Clay, who taught in his native North Carolina before becoming a pop sensation. "It gives me an opportunity to do what I used to do."

And for all you "Clay-mates" who want to get up close to the cute crooner, the tour kicks off November 2 in Vancouver and "then we head right on through till Christmas," says the singer. "The last show before Christmas is in my hometown of Raleigh. We'll come back after Christmas and do four shows in Florida. So it's 40 dates in 38 cities. It's a big undertaking."

For more with Clay, watch tonight's "Insider"!

K103 Portland Interviewing Clay

Clay will be on with K103 FM in Portland on Thursday morning at around 7 AM PST to talk about the Joyful Noise Tour which is making a stop in Portland the same day. Fans are encouraged to send questions for Clay to This station does stream through, so you can listen to the interview even if you do not live in the Portland area. Interview

The Washington Post's scheduled interview with Clay about UNICEF is now up. The interview was 'live' via a tape-delayed feed. You can listen to it here, or download by right clicking and selecting save target as here.

A few recaps from the interview via Clayboard members.

  • New CD will be out in the first 6 months of 2006
  • Interview was taped from Vancouver, BC where the tour starts in 2 days.
  • Team Clay still out looking for good songs for the new album
  • Talked extensively about Uganda and Indonisia UNICEF trips.
  • Said trips touched him deeply.
  • Asked about whether Clay would adopt a child, like Angelina Jolie has and Clay said he wouldn't rule it out.
  • Clay talked to a singer-songwrite Steve Curtis Chapman who visited Uganda this past August about writing a song for Clay's new album.
Full transcript. Many thanks to the nicegurrrl from the CB who took the time to transcribe this for Clayfans.
This is Rocky Fisch from the newsroom speaking with Clay Aiken, this year's UNICEF Ambassador.

WP: First question here from Dumphries, Virginia: You have said that your experience with UNICEF has been one of the greatest blessings you have had. Can you elaborate on that?

CA: You know, I think that probably for me, I would characterize it that way, because you know- I've had an opportunity- I've had too- so many opportunities I never thought I'd have before, obviously, with this whole new career being- living in a smaller town in North Carolina to all of a sudden living in LA and traveling all around the country, and performing and doing something that I love, but- More than that for me, it's really been that- working with UNICEF, being an ambassador with UNICEF, has given me- I mean, pftt, I am in Vancouver, Canada today - and to me (laughs)- that was you know that was the furthest I'd ever leave the US before my experience with UNICEF. And having an opportunity to - not really just go and visit a different county, because I think, you know, visiting a different country on a vacation is one thing, but doing what I've had the opportunity to do, where you actually get to see how people live, and you get to see situations and - you know, being right there in Banda Aceh right after the tsunami was an amazing experience, an extremely eye-opening experience. You know, to go from small town America where you don't have any view of the outside world, really (laughs) and then to the celebrity lifestyle, I guess, if you want to call it that, where you are somewhat catered to in a way. And then, to come out and go to a place like Indonesia or Uganda where people really have to- I mean, not only is the lifestyle completely different, but you know it gives you an opportunity to take a look at what you have, and- it sounds very cliché to say it, but you take a look at what you have and what opportunities that I have as an American and what opportunities I have in this country, and it gives you such a worldly- a different view of (WP: Yes) - of your own life, not just the people who you are working with or observing and seeing live, it really - I think that more than that it has given me a different view of myself and my life as an American. I know that sounds extremely cliché and I hate to use it, but that's really been the largest benefit for me.

WP: Clay, when you go to these places, and you've been to many, exactly what do you do? I mean, is it basically observing, finding out what the people need or what has happened or what?

CA: That is pretty much what the purpose of an ambassador is. You know, I grew up knowing about UNICEF only because it was, you know, the trick-or-treat program (laughs), but that you raise money. I knew it was a United Nations program and - you know, for a while there, it was actually called the United Nations Children's Emergency Fund, and so my impression of it was that it only went into emergency situations. But the truth is, now it's United Nations Children's Fund, and a very few people - while they know what UNICEF is, and in a very general way know what UNICEF does, they don't really know specifically what it is that UNICEF does -

WP: And what does UNICEF do?

CA: You know, UNICEF works in 157 different countries throughout the world; not just in emergency situations - obviously they are on the forefront of emergency situations like the earthquake in Pakistan, or the tsunami in Southeast Asia. They work on child nutrition, they work on child welfare in general - welfare of children and women in third-world countries and even in developed countries, because we worked in the US after Katrina - all over the world, to keep children safe, to keep them educated, make sure they're educated appropriately, make sure they're fed, make sure they're kept healthy. And so the job, to answer your question, of an ambassador, really, is to go and observe, and then I have the opportunity to come back and do things like this - and interview and discuss with people what I've seen. The work that was done after tsunami, you know - (interrupted)

WP: And spread the word in other words -

CA: I'm sorry?

WP: Spread the word.

CA: Yeah, in a way. And, fortunately for me, my very first assignment, I guess if you will, was right after the tsunami, and I had the opportunity to actually thank people for the work that they had done, as opposed to coming out and asking them for money. Tsunami was such a major fund recipient from US donors that it was an opportunity for me to actually go for my first trip and take a look at what UNICEF is doing with the money. Instead of saying, this is what they're doing, here is what they're trying to do, here's what they need to do- this is what they have done with your money, thank you for what you've given, and let me show you and let me tell you first hand how it's being put to work and how your money is making a difference. So that was kind of an interesting - a neat opportunity.

WP: This from Vanport, PA: Is it true that UNICEF will be donating half of the money collected from trick-or-treat to the victims of hurricane Katrina?

CA: It is. It's the very first time-

WP: And Rita, by the way.

CA: Ok. It's the very first time that they've actually worked in the US. UNICEF has a mandate to work in countries where their help is needed and asked for by the government, and as a generous country that we are, you know, we typically don't take out of the coffers of UNICEF. We've never taken out of UNICEF's coffers before because we don't usually have that need, have that great a need, obviously when there is a greater need elsewhere. So, UNICEF never worked in the US, but obviously with the tragedy for Katrina, the US government has asked for UNICEF to help out, and it's - and so this is the very first time, and they will be given 50%. Fifty percent of the proceeds from this year's trick-or-treat fund will go to hurricane relief efforts in the gulf states.

WP: Any idea how much you expect collect tonight in those UNICEF bags?

CA: I really have- I really don't have any idea (laughs). You know, I think this year- this has been a tragic year with tsunami- people giving to tsunami, right up through the beginning of this year from last's year tsunami, and then obviously the devastating hurricanes. I've, you know, lived through a few hurricanes myself, but none the magnitude of this year's storms- "s" storms. So this has been kind of a tragic year, and so many people in the US have really given a lot this year to different causes. And, for that purpose, you know, we hope to raise money- and I'll be completely honest with you, I'm not a very good spokesperson because I don't know how much we raised last year, (laughs) but it is - one of UNICEF USA's biggest fundraiser of the year is trick-or-treat. And, you know, we hope that people are able to at this point still give to the cause this year, and realize that even though half of it will go to Katrina, half of it is going, again to - to, you know, the 157 countries that UNICEF works in.

WP: Are you planning to go to New Orleans?

CA: Oh, you know, I kind of opted not to. I think that - at this- at least, not yet. I think that at the time that the storm hit, there was very little need for me to go down there as far as - you know, to be in the way. I kind of disenfranchised a little bit, if I'm being completely honest, with a lot of the celebrity activity down there, which- you know, I feel like my greatest- asset- if you will- or the greatest benefit for me doing something like this, is like I said, in Uganda - when I went to Uganda and had the opportunity to come back and discuss, or talk to people about what's happening in Uganda, what UNICEF is doing. When I take a trip to Indonesia and had a specific purpose, it usually is to come back and talk about what's happening down there, what people can do to help, what people have done to help, what UNICEF is doing to help. And, obviously, for Katrina, there was so much attention down there anyway, I think that a lot of- in my very personal opinion, I think a lot of people went down there for the wrong reasons. I don't think that there was really a need to bring attention to Katrina when the news outlets and the media was really doing that quite well on their own, and I felt that a lot of celebrities went down there for self-serving purpose and it kind of disenfranchised me, so I made a very pointed effort not to go down there. You know, if there is at some point a time where I feel like I could do something that would be beneficial and wouldn't be (laughs) self-serving, I think I might go, but until that time I've kind of opted to not be in the way, and allow the people who are experts in doing what they do best to do it- (interrupted/unintelligible)

WP: Clay, from Millersville, PA, someone writes here: I really respect your energy and involvement with students. Any ideas on how we parents, teachers, can help today's young generation become socially conscious adults who will be active in global issues and concerns?

CA: You know, I was actually just talking about this with a friend recently. I think that as adults- as students today, sadly, don't know what is going on in their own world. And I know as a highschooler myself, and as a college student, there was zero, really, educational opportunities, if you will, in high school or in college, to really take a- to learn about current events. You know, we spend a lot of time on Constantinople and the Ottoman Turks and (laughs) whatnot, but very little on modern American History, modern World History, and that's where you really learn, I think, to be a world citizen. That, and on the news. I mean, I think children should be encouraged to pay attention to the news and to know what is going on in their own world. I think it's really important that the youth of today- highschoolers, college students - know what's happening in the real world. I think honestly, and as an educator myself I'm probably going to get chewed out by some fellow educators (laughs). I may lose some credibility as a teacher, but you know, I think a lot of times we spend too much time on superfluous book-work: calculus, (laughs) statistics for high schoolers, you know, and world civilization history, and not enough on what's happening in our world. And so it's one thing to be very educated and to know what happened in 1164 in the Turkish empire, but it's completely something more important to know what happened in the US in 2006 or 2005 or 2004 or 7- or, you know, to know what is happening in your world today. And kids don't have that opportunity as much anymore, and kids don't - they're not interested in it. And, you know, I'll watch the news like it's a religion, to be honest with you (laughs). I know it's on constantly, because if you don't know what's happening in your- you know, if you don't what's going on today with the Supreme Court, or if you don't appreciate the importance of Rosa Parks and what she did for this country, and what she did for people all over this nation, then you don't really know what's- you're not a very worldly person. That to me- and I've kind- I feel like I've gotten on a soapbox right here because I (laughs) just was talking about it yesterday, but it's an interesting question to ask right now.

WP: Clay, from New Orleans, a question: Will any of the music on your next CD reflect any of your experiences in Indonesia, Uganda, Banda Aceh?

CA: We- we're still putting the next album together, and you know, that was- that's not- I definitely could not give a definitive answer right now about that because we - we are still working on songs and trying to find out, or compile, you know, the album itself. But it's not outside of the realm of possibility. You know, there's - my trip to Uganda was probably the most powerful thing I've ever experienced. You know, I mean, as far as emotions go, there's no end to the emotions that surge through you when you are seeing something like that. And ironically, a songwriter who I admire quite a bit, I spoke to before I went to Uganda and found out that he was actually going to be in Uganda at the very same time. His trip got moved back later, but he was going to be in Uganda this summer as well, too, because he was going to- with a different organization- to observe the same thing I had observed, and we had discussed- we had discussed for a while the possibility of trying to put something, or - he's the talented one there- put something down that relates to what happened. But I'm not 100% sure, so I can't give a definitive answer on that.

WP: Ok, any idea when your next one might come out?

CA: (laughs) Lord, I can't give a definitive answer on that one either! (Still laughing). We'd love to have it out- we want to have it out in the first half of next year, and that's - whooo, way too broad I'm sure- of a statement, but its pretty - that's about what I can offer right now (laughs) as far as an answer to that.

WP: Question from Brooklyn, New York: Would you ever consider adopting a child from Asia or Africa to raise as your own as a single parent as Angelina Jolie did?

CA: Wow! I couldn't say no to that, but I- you know, it's not - like I said, it's not something that is in the forefront of my mind right now. You know, I think it takes a very special person to adopt a child, and it takes even more of a special person to take on such a task as a single parent.

WP: And one final thing. Do you plan on watching the new season of American Idol in January?

CA: Oh, I hope to be too busy (laughs) but I typically try to turn it on when I can.

WP: Ok, Clay Aiken, thank you very much for speaking with us today.

CA: Thank you very much.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Google Testing New Video Service

Google is testing Google Video, its newest service introduced last week. It allows users to upload videos of any size and share it-- for free! Already, a few Clay videos are up.

Clay on MTV

From the CB's LVClaymate1130:

Around 5:45 i was siting in the living room eating and watching MTV Hits (in case some of you don't know it's a 24 hour music video channel). Occasionally they will show "Invisible" but it's once in a blue moon. Well to my surprise "Invisible" came on. So I turned the volume way up and sang my heart out :laugh . I kept it on after the video went off and a couple other videos came on. Then around 6 they showed "The Way". They NEVER show that video. Obviously MTV has caught on to something lol.

Clay Aiken CD Parties Looking for New Logo

Organizers of Clay CD Release parties are preparing for the upcoming sophomore album scheduled for release in early 2006. They are looking for a logo and poster which will be used for promotion. This contest runs until November 6. Entries can be e-mailed to The winning design of the logo contest will be announced Nov. 7. Visit for more info.

Details for the poster contest are forthcoming. Stay tuned.

Clay's Daily Double At

Our post yesterday about Clay's upcoming live audio discussion via (tomorrow, at 1 PM EST) about his UNICEF work has made headlines at!

Does Clay Look Good On Your Sofa?

We thought this was an interesting story from the CB's ANA MEDINA:

I recently moved to Florida. We went shopping for furniture today. I liked a brown sofa and I was trying different color pillows on it. All of a sudden the saleslady said "clay would look good on your sofa". Well , i turned around and looked at my daughter her eyes were wide opened. Then we realized she meant the color clay. She was wondering why we were laughing. I started telling her that for a minute there i thought she was talking about Clay Aiken. She went on to say that she really likes Clay Aiken. My husband immediatley told her "I hope you have over 30 minutes because she will never stop talking about clay"
This is the first time someone has mention Clay as a color to me.
I'm going back to buy that sofa since Clay will look great on it!!!!. hehe

Special Edition of LTS Arrives for Lucky Claymate

The CB's ClayPerfect received her special leather-bound edition Learning To Sing (made available through Easton Press for $84, click here to order) and has posted some photos of it for us. The book contains 2 Clay autographs - one on the book itself and one on the Certificate of Authenticity.
Click to enlarge.

CDD supports:

Bubel Aiken Foundation GoodSearch for TBAF UNICEF