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Thursday, November 29, 2007

Press Lauds Christmas In The Heartland Tour

As concert reviews start coming in, the press is praising Clay's Christmas in the Heartland tour for its uniqueness, and "hometown charm".

A fantastic review, titled "Aiken molds his own way" appeared in today's Baltimore Sun. The review also mentions Clay's upcoming role in Spamalot, and his forthcoming studio album, slated for release in the first half of 2008. A preview of the article appears below. Head over to Baltimore Sun's website to read the entire review/article -

Aiken molds his own way
'Idol' singer, set to perform his holiday show in D.C., embraces his lack of cool in an effort to just be himself

By Brad Schleicher | Sun reporter
November 29, 2007

Clay Aiken knows he isn't cool. He doesn't seem to mind.

He's been fighting to stay that way after being launched into the ranks of superstardom as the runner-up on 2003's American Idol.

Aside from an occasional change in hairstyle and wardrobe, Aiken says he hasn't tried to reinvent himself or his music to compete with pop music's edgier leading men.

And he admits that it would be odd for people to bump and grind to one of his songs.

"I'll put it this way," he says, "if I was in a club and Clay Aiken started playing, I would get off the dance floor."

But Aiken, who will perform a holiday concert Sunday at D.C.'s Warner Theatre with the Concert Artists of Baltimore, has stuck to what he knows he's good at - showcasing his vocal prowess rather than his dance moves or beats.

Aiken says he has gained more control in the studio. For his fourth full-length album, in pre-production, he has more of an influence when choosing songs and producers, which affects the direction of the album as a whole.

But Aiken is broadening more than his musical horizons by appearing on a different type of stage in January.

Aiken was recently cast in the role of the less-than-heroic Sir Robin in the Broadway production of Monty Python's Spamalot, a critically acclaimed, Tony Award-winning musical directed by Mike Nichols.

Clay Aiken will perform with the Concert Artists of Baltimore at 7 p.m. Sunday at the Warner Theatre, 513 13th St. N.W., Washington. Tickets are $57-$127. Go to or call the box office at 410-547-7328.
WSBT-TV and the South Bend Tribune reviewed Clay's South Bend concert from last night, saying: "It’s clear he has grown as a singer and performer since his 'American Idol' stint, and after the break, he proved by just how much":
Aiken's Holiday Fare Doesn’t Disappoint Faithful Fans
By JEREMY D. BONFIGLIO, Tribune Staff Writer


Although a good chunk of the audience may not share a common zip code, it was clear Wednesday that these were proud citizens of Claynation.

They clapped loudly when Aiken belted out perhaps his most popular Christmas tune, "Mary, Did You Know?"

They seemed undaunted by a few harmless, but noticeable vocal cracks at the end of "Winter Wonderland."

They even panicked for a brief moment when the curtain fell just 45 minutes into the show. Seconds later a voice came on to inform them that it was simply intermission.

Perhaps it was the orchestra setting, or the backup singers in formal gowns, but the first act came off as a bit stiff, despite Aiken’s obvious vocal acuity.

It’s clear he has grown as a singer and performer since his "American Idol" stint, and after the break, he proved by just how much.

Aiken’s tender version of "O, Holy Night" set the tone for the rest of the night.

It all led to the undeniable concert highlight, "Don't Save It All For Christmas Day," a tune once sung by Parlor.

"I like it so much," Aiken admitted, "I stole it from her."


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