Anoop Desai

American Idol Kicks Off Their 2009 Summer Tour While Other Bands Tour The U.S.A.

carrie-underwoodAmerican Idol fanale Tuesday and rumor has it Carrie Underwood will perform on Tuesday and that last year’s winner David Cook will perform at the fanale kicking off the 2009 Summer Tour. Other bands continue to tour the U.S. A. such as Elton John & Billy Joel, Phish, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Kid Rock and the Jonas Brothers in June. Green Day announces their tour as Jimmy Buffett continues his tour in May, June and August in California, Massachusetts and Ohio.  Tuesday night, Adam Lambert and Kris Allen will battle it out and keep millions of American Idol fans watching and dialing as they choose their new American Idol. Rumor has it Carrie Underwood will perform on Tuesday and that last year’s winner David Cook will perform at the fanale kicking off the 2009 Summer Tour. All top 10 finalists: Adam Lambert, Allison Iraheta, Anoop Desai, Danny Gokey, Kris Allen, Lil Rounds, Matt Giraud, Megan Joy, Michael Sarver, and Scott MacIntyre, will take the stage on a 50 city tour beginning July 5th, tickets are now on sale at www.NationalShowTickets.com and other ticket outlets.  While President President Barack Obama is working on fixing the economy, some of Americas favorite bands are on tour in the U.S.A and Europe and Americans are buying tickets to sold out events. Elton John & Billy Joel, finishing up their spring Face 2 Face rock tour with remaining concerts in Indianapolis, IN, Auburn Hills, MI, Cleveland, OH, Washington, DC and parts of Canada. The Phish 2009 Summer Tour will still hit cities like Boston, MA, Nikon at Jones Beach, in Wantagh, NY. and Camden, NJ, also Asheville, NC and Knoxville, TN. Lynyrd Skynyrd and Kid Rock will hit cities in June and July as well as the Jonas Brothers in June and Pink tickets are now on sale for September. Jimmy Buffett is continuing his tour in May, June and August in California, Massachusetts and Ohio. Green Day is now on tour as well as Nickelback and Coldplay.

NationalShowTickets.com has seen an increase in sales due to the economy and the many scams related to fraudulent ticket sales from individuals preying on others during a bad economy. Many people would rather use a broker they know are selling valid tickets and use their credit cards for extra protection against fraud.

Kenny Chesney, Taylor Swift, George Strait, Keith Urban and Toby Keith are all on tour for the country music fans. If you are looking for comedy, seek Dane Cook, Flight of the Conchords, Jeff Dunham, Larry the Cable Guy or Ron White to name a few, even Whoopi Goldberg will perform in Las Vegas at the Encore Theatre At Wynn Las Vegas on May 22 and 23.

The Ultimate Fight Championships will happen in Las Vegas with UFC 98 on May 23 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, followed by the Ultimate Fighter 9 Finale at the Pearl Concert Theater at the Palms Casino Resort on June 20. The UFC 100 fight will happen at Mandalay Bay – Events Center on July 11, tickets are now on sale for all events at www.NationalShowTickets.com and other ticket outlets.

Michael Jackson will perform in London at the O2 Dome in the United Kingdom beginning July 8 and finish his 50th night concert on Feb. 24, 2010. So while the economy may be bad, Americans will always find a way to enjoy life by catching one of the many concerts and events featuring their favorite bands that are currently on tour at a city near you. For complete tour and concert dates, times and ticket prices visit http://www.NationalShowTickets.com when online and order tickets to sold out events.

If you are planning a visit to Las Vegas be sure and visit www.Click2Vegas.com for details of upcoming concerts and events that will be happening during your stay in Las Vegas.

‘Idol’ judges distracted by Iraheta’s funky outfit

irahetaAllison Iraheta’s funky outfit got more attention than her performance on “American Idol.” The judges’ panel seemed too distracted by what she was wearing to offer much criticism of her performance. The 16-year-old rock prodigy belted the No Doubt hit “Don’t Speak”  not that it mattered. Judge Simon Cowell said Iraheta’s look resembled “something out of ‘The Addams Family.’” Her poofy red dress, black leggings, white heels and spiky magenta hair led Cowell to joke that the night’s theme must be Halloween.

For Tuesday night’s performance show, the nine remaining contestants were asked to choose from the most popular downloaded songs on iTunes.  Most failed to win over judges. Cowell said Anoop Desai’s take on Usher ‘s “Caught Up” gave him a headache. Randy Jackson compared Megan Joy’s reggae-lite performance of “Turn Your Lights Down Low” to “watching paint dry.” The foursome brought Lil Rounds to tears after criticizing the soul singer for playing it safe with a Celine Dion song.  It wasn’t all gloom and doom. Adam Lambert , the 26-year-old theater actor who defies labels and vocal limits, continued his hot streak with a not-so-corny rendition of “Play That Funky Music.” Paula Abdul called Lambert a “genius” in the vein of Mick Jagger and Steven Tyler .  Cowell told Kris Allen, Danny Gokey and Scott MacIntyre they gave their best performances so far in the top-rated Fox singing contest.  MacIntyre, from Scottsdale, Ariz., stuck to the piano again, tickling the ivories for Billy Joel ‘s “Just The Way You Are.”  “Of all the contestants that have graced the stage, I am most proud of you,” Abdul told MacIntyre, who is legally blind.  The fate of these singers will be determined during Wednesday’s results show. One will be sent packing — unless judges choose to use a new rule that allows them to save someone they feel has been wrongly booted by voting viewers.

Michael Sarver got a crude awakening Thursday night from his “American Idol” life.

michael_sarverThe 27-year-old oil rig worker from Jasper, Texas, made his final plea by belting out “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg,” but it just wasn’t slick enough for the judges to overrule the votes of viewers. Sarver was also in the bottom two last week, and put on a consensus weak performance in Wednesday night’s performance round. Even sugary-sweet Paula Abdul chimed in, comparing the 27-year-old oil rig worker from Jasper, Texas, to an old-school Vegas lounge act. His unrefined reprisal of the Temptations classic didn’t appear to tempt the judges to spend their one-time save of a low-vote getter. The four got their heads together for a moment, then Simon Cowell told the married father of two children: “Michael, you’re going home. Sorry.”  Matt Giraud, 23, of Kalamazoo, Mich., was the other bottom vote-getter, despite the judges’ positive appraisal of his “Let’s Get it On” by Marvin Gaye.  Stevie Wonder kept the Motown mojo of this week’s show going by singing a medley of his songs, energizing both the contestants — who were dancing and grooving along — and audience.  The nine contestants who remain on the Fox network’s singing competition are Allison Iraheta, Adam Lambert, Anoop Desai, Danny Gokey, Kris Allen, Lil Rounds, Matt Giraud, Megan Corkrey and Scott MacIntyre.

Fox pushed this week’s “American Idol” broadcasts back a day to steer clear of President Obama’s prime-time news conference on Tuesday night.

`Idol’ finalists savor group prize: concert tour

american-idol-finalists-a-001The top 10 “American Idol” finalists say they already count themselves as winners: They’ve earned a place on the show’s nationwide concert tour. For Adam Lambert, the summer tour means the chance to buy a condo. Danny Gokey sees it as a financial boon as well. Michael Sarver fervently echoes that and looks forward to his version of a rock-star perq — ice cream, and lots of it. “I have a major problem with ice cream. I should probably go to Ice Cream Anonymous meetings,” he said.

Sarver and his fellow contestants laugh when asked about any divalike demands, but they’re serious about the opportunity ahead of them. “I didn’t know my situation if I had to go back home without the tour. … things are not easy right now,” said Sarver, 27, an oil-rig worker from Jasper, Texas, who’s married with two children. “This says I have work this year. It’s a blessing.” Lambert, 27, of Los Angeles figures it’s about time he owned his own home. Megan Joy, 23, from Sandy, Utah, is looking forward to a little personal space for her and her toddler. “I get to finally move out of my mom’s house,” she said, gleefully.  Dates and tour locations have yet to be announced for the tour, which follows the show’s May 20 finale. On this week’s shows the contestants were set to perform Motown tunes. What they’ll be paid for the tour is kept under wraps by producers. Even the contestants were uncertain a week after making the cut. “I keep hearing that it’s plenty,” said Kris Allen, 23, of Conway, Ark. “That’s nice.”  Of course, there’s more than money at stake — the chance to connect with fans and to build a career are the real plums, the finalists said.  “It still seems like a dream. … I can’t wait to see what I learn doing it,” said Matt Giraud, 23, of Kalamazoo, Mich.  The tour is “an amazing opportunity,” agreed Anoop Desai, 22, of Chapel Hill, N.C., calling “American Idol” the “biggest stage and best stage of all.”  The typical “Idol” concert swing lasts more than three months and includes 50 or 60 concerts, including stadiums. The contestants travel by bus.  “That’s what I’ve been dreaming about since I was a little kid, is going on the road and playing night after night … to share my music with whoever will listen to it. That’s what I’m here to do,” said Scott MacIntyre, 23, of Scottsdale, Ariz.  The finalists have bonded as housemates during the course of the TV show and expect the camaraderie — and the fun — to continue on tour, Lambert said.  Asked if he expects to be the demanding pop star, he laughed. “No, I take what I can get. I only like to play the part of the diva when I’m actually performing, but I don’t like to act like that otherwise,” he said.  Most expect to travel light, with cell phones and computers among the items mentioned as must-haves. Gokey, 28, of Milwaukee, whose wife died shortly before he auditioned for “American Idol,” says his computer has “all my pictures on it. Basically, my whole life’s on it.”  The youngest finalist, 16-year-old Allison Iraheta of Downey, Calif., will be bringing along her schoolwork and maybe a parent.  “My mom might be going on tour with me, so it will be interesting,” Iraheta said. Lil Rounds, 24, of Memphis, Tenn., is hoping her husband and three children can visit her when the tour is close to home. “The babies understand what I’m doing and they’re proud,” Rounds said.  She and her fellow contestants are just beginning to grasp their sudden shift in fortune.    “I went from singing at a church in front of maybe 70 to 80 people to a national tour. It’s absolutely amazing,” Rounds said. For all the excitement the concert tour promises, the contestants want to believe it’s just the start of something big. “I’ll definitely be sticking around, I hope, after all is said and done. I’m not stopping,” said MacIntyre.  Gokey wants the same. “It’s so exciting to be on the road and fulfilling the dream that I’ve had. I’m hoping it’s just the beginning,” he said.

There was no saving Alexis Grace on “American Idol.”

  alexis-graceThe show’s four judges unanimously decided not to keep the 21-year-old single mother from Memphis from being eliminated on the Fox singing competition after she received the least number of viewer votes Wednesday. The panelists first teased that they might veto her dismissal, but after a final performance, Simon Cowell told her it wasn’t good enough.  “I wish I could’ve done better,” she said after her ouster. “But, you know, things happen for a reason.”  The judges now have a one-time-only opportunity to save a singer from being eliminated until the top five finalists are selected. If the panel unanimously agrees, no contestants will be eliminated that week, but two crooners will be out the next week. As the judges deliberated her fate, Grace sang — her voice cracking — one last time.  “It was good, but it wasn’t good enough,” said Cowell. “Sorry. It’s the end of the line, I’m afraid.”  Grace disappointed the judges on Tuesday’s Grand Ole Opry-themed performance show with a subdued rendition of Dolly Parton’s “Jolene.” Joining Grace as the bottom three vote-getters this week were 16-year-old Allison Iraheta and 27-year-old oil-rig worker Michael Sarver.

The finalists remaining in the competition are Sarver, Iraheta, Adam Lambert, Anoop Desai, Danny Gokey, Kris Allen, Lil Rounds, Matt Giraud, Megan Corkrey and Scott MacIntyre.

On next Wednesday’s performance show, they will perform Motown tunes. Then, on next Thursday’s results show, another finalist will be sent packing — or possibly rescued.

Idol’s Anoop: Sneaking Into the Finals as Lucky No. 13 Was “Intense”

idols“We decided, recently, we’re going to make this a Top 13.” With those words from Simon Cowell, the American Idol-verse erupted with applause, because it meant that fan fave Anoop Desai would proceed into the next round of the Season 8 competition. Anoop says, “It was intense” being plucked from the ashes at the end of Thursday’s Wild Card show, after believing his run to be over. “It was the difference between having all of your dreams dashed, and seconds later they’re alive again.” Immediately after the show, he says, “The producers and Simon and all the judges sort of apologized” for putting him through the emotional roller-coaster ride. Still, “It was a genuine shock for me,” he says of his reversal of fortune. “I’m just glad I’m still here!” As the show’s “Lucky No. 13,” does Anoop feel an added burden to now wow the crowd with his next performance and thus earn his salvation? Not really. “I happened to be the last one chosen,” he says, “but I’m very comfortable with that.” The 22-year-old singer actually says the Idol audience is the biggest beneficiary of the Top 13 twist, as they will now get a slightly broader range of music to sample. “Every one of the Top 13 is really, really talented, and has their own style,” he points out. “I think it’s going to be a boon for the show, because it will showcase that wide variety of talent.” What’s your take, Idol fans? Is 13 in fact a lucky number, or is the expanded field just a publicity/ratings ploy?

Top 13 finalists chosen on ‘American Idol’

 anoop-desaiThirteen turned out to be the lucky number for Anoop Desai on “American Idol.” After announcing the three remaining finalists at the end of Thursday’s wild card round, Simon Cowell announced that the much-loved 22-year-old college student from Chapel Hill, N.C., won a previously unannounced 13th spot in the next round of the popular Fox singing contest. In past seasons, 12 finalists were picked to move on. “We decided — recently — we’re going to make this a top 13,” Cowell revealed. The three other wild-card finalists were Jasmine Murray, the big-voiced 16-year-old high school student from Starkville, Miss.; Megan Corkrey, the quirky 22-year-old single mother from Sandy, Utah; and Matt Giraud, the soulful 23-year-old dueling piano player from Kalamazoo, Mich.  The previously dismissed foursome were selected by the show’s judges. Desai’s last-minute selection wasn’t the night’s only seemingly unscripted moment. After oh-so-emotional semifinalist Tatiana Del Toro performed Whitney Houston’s “Saving All My Love For You,” she kneeled and pleaded for a spot from the judges. Then, host Ryan Seacrest came on stage and told her she didn’t have to get up off her knees.

“Family show, family show,” judge Kara DioGuardi repeatedly proclaimed throughout the awkward moment. Desai, Murray, Corkrey and Giraud join previously picked finalists Kris Allen, Danny Gokey, Alexis Grace, Allison Iraheta, Adam Lambert, Scott MacIntyre, Jorge Nunez, Lil Rounds and Michael Sarver. The 13 finalists will start competing next Tuesday — with one singer sent packing each Wednesday.

‘American Idol’ selects 3 more finalists

kristen-mcnamara The drama is over for Nathaniel Marshall and Kristen McNamara on “American Idol.” The pair of singers who sparred with their group during Hollywood Week were two of nine semifinalists sent packing Wednesday on the popular Fox singing competition — and they weren’t selected to return for the special wild card round, either. The third group of three finalists headed to the top 12: Lil Rounds, the smooth 23-year-old mother of three from Memphis, Tenn.; Scott MacIntyre, the soulful 23-year-old piano player from Scottsdale, Ariz., and Jorge Nunez, the charming 20-year-old college student from Carolina, Puerto Rico. The trio received the most viewer votes Tuesday.

The show’s four judges seemed in agreement with the viewer votes this week. They apparently didn’t want to be without Rounds, who received the biggest endorsement after singing Mary J. Blige’s “Be Without You.” The panel also lauded MacIntyre and Nunez, who broke into tears Tuesday after his rendition of Elton John’s “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me.”

“You’re born to sing,” said Kara DioGuardi. “What you have comes from the heart.”

At the end of the show, the judges also announced the semifinalists who will get a second shot at the top 12.

Von Smith, Jasmine Murray, Ricky Braddy, Megan Corkrey, Tatiana Del Toro, Matt Giraud, Jesse Langseth and Anoop Desai will return to the stage for the wild card round Thursday. The judges will pick the final three finalists from that group.

“Thank you so much. Thank you so much,” said a weeping Del Toro. “I want this so much. This means so much to me.”

Nunez, MacIntyre and Rounds join previously picked finalists Kris Allen, Adam Lambert, Allison Iraheta, Danny Gokey, Alexis Grace and Michael Sarver. The show’s dozen finalists will be known Thursday after the wild card round.

Beginning next week, the finalists start competing — with one singer sent packing each Wednesday.

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