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July 1-30, 2005 - Clay News

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July 15:

> Not sure if these goes here or not...

...but Clay has posted a new update in his blog on the OFC. "My Summer Vacation."

> Short clip of Clay photo shoot....on directv it is channel 224, I think!

Repeat at 11 pm!

Reported to be wearing a black tux jacket with undone tie.


Rumor of two covers!

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July 13...Clay played UPS delivery man for Amazon;s 10 year anniversary promotions.

he delivered Learning to Sing to a lucky fan in Camarillo California. The lucky mother of the recipient is Nicegurrrrl from the Clackhouse. The video is up on Amazon.

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July 14...Radio Interview Toledo, OH 101.5 the River.


> Clay gives us the name of the new Executive Producer for his upcoming CD...Jaymes Foster-Levy.

> He said they are in the studios recording and he is very happy with the songs. They may previewsome of them on Tour....

> THe Jukebox Tour woudl have songs from the Andrew sisters...sang by the backup singers, some funk, hair band,sam cool, GooGoo dolls...

> They also talked about the new feature of having test messages sent to clay before the cocnert and messages flashing on screen.

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Clay was on the radio this morning - someone at Clayboard caught it:

Clay Interviewed on Cleveland Radio This AM


Surprised this hasn't been posted! Here's the situation, I don't listen to the radio since they never seem to play Clay, but my good friend was commuting to work this am and was scanning the radio and came across Q104 interviewing Clay. She was so excited (and no she doesn't have a cell phone) and she just now got a hold of me.(I was gone all morning).

Here's the summary of the interview:

They asked him what he was up to....He told them he had been out the country for UNICEF.

The mentioned him now as a sex symbol/International star. He downplayed the sex symbol thing.

Asked him if he keeps in touch with past Idol...He said he talked to Ruben few weeks ago/still good friends, talks to KLO

and talks frequently to Kelly, there good friends.

They asked him if he has a home base since he no longer lives with KLO and he said he bought a home in LA and lives close to KLO's new home. His mother decorated the home, if it was up to him he'd have clothes on the floor. Was excited when last year agency gave gift certificate to Loew's and he's excited to go there and shop.

Talked about JBT he said he doesn't have a fave song, but that the 80's is probably his fave decade, really likes the 70's now, he said he had no trouble finding songs from that decade and the 90's least favorite. Hope to do songs from his new CD which he said might be out in the next 5 years then he laughed. She said he sounded a little wistful when he said it!

He also talked about being a roll model and he doesn't read negative comments in articles if he can avoid it because some things are said that are not true!

She said he sounded upbeat and happy. She also said he said Ohio crowds are energetic and he enjoys playing in Ohio!

If she remembers anything else she'll let me know.

Also, I think this is a summary of the Pittsburgh interview from 1pm today (from CH via CV):

eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee there he is

talking about the emails and phone calls they got - said "oh really"

talking about the jukebox tour - favorite decade. Tough to pick...said he likes the 80's, likes the Motowns...

talking about the looks of 70's and can't believe people looked like that....but said that it was the easiest decade to pick songs from.

Thought 90's would be the easiest...but after listening to it, he said...what were we thinking...mmmbop and Villi Manilli [sic] and that was the one he had the toughest song choices. ed. note -- not sure if he actually said "Villi Manilli", but considering that scorpionlady45 had a "duh" emoticon after the name, I suspect he might have.

Now talking about asking them to bring the cell phones to the concerts...talking about Boomberang and sending messages before and during the shows. And in some places, being able to text messages on screens.

Talking about GMA and TV Guide cover coming up.

He mentioned going to Indonesia and Uganda for Unicef

Okay the interview is over and she didn't ask anything about CD just that he is working on it.

He sounded really good...really upbeat and laughing a lot

They are playing Invisible now.

Another recap of the same from someone at the Clayboard via CH:

End of song. DJ talking. He's on!!!!

He's ok. She seems overwhelmed with emails. Mentioned the Bolt Babes.

Hard to pick his favorite decade. Favorite stuff is from 80s

Won't say his particular song favorite. Loves Motown section too. 60s

Grew up on 90s, looked down on 70s. Now easy to find songs from 70s. Hard to find which one to do. Doesn't like 90s now.

Milli Vanilli -- "Umm bop"

Fads change quickly.

Talked about text messages and cell phones at concert. Trying something out. Might hate himself later for doing this.

Text a number to send messages backstage and during the show. Some venues with screens for messages during the show. Might need an edit. Interactive element. He can text message back!!!!!!!!!

Favorite part is to meet people. Try to have people up on stage. Not sure if there will be someone on stage this show.

GMA now. TV Guide cover. Took a few months off at the beginning of this year. Actually was "quite bored" "Nothing's too busy for me at this point"


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We are putting the whole quote here since this story has gone National and is a concern in the fandom, we know many will be curious about it. Hopefully this will also lessen the need to give this story any more hits.


Aiken’s charity isn’t that charitable


Jeannette Walls delivers the scoop

Looks like Clay Aiken’s charity isn’t terribly charitable.

Aiken co-founded the Bubel/Aiken foundation to benefit children with disabilities, but a document filed with the Internal Revenue Service revealed that of the more than $1 million the group raised last year, less than a third was handed out in grants.

More than $150,000 went for travel expenses, $173,000 for “professional services,” and nearly $150,000 for salaries. One of the reasons for the high expenses was high-profile galas held in places like Los Angeles and Hawaii.

Aiken’s rep didn’t return The Scoop’s call for comment, but his partner, co-founder Diane Bubel, told WRAL-TV in Raleigh that critics are misrepresenting the situation. “We’re volunteering and doing something good, and all we hear is complaining,” Bubel said.

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Could this be...some positive spin from the press?


People in the News: Even good guys come under the gun

Angelina Jolie isn't the only do-gooder celebrity. Geek-turned-idol Clay Aiken co-founded the Bubel/Aiken Foundation, which aims to help disabled kids by spreading awareness and funding special programs.


Critics, though, have acted like hounds ready to chew up and spit out Aiken's efforts. You'd think that instead of criticizing a celebrity using his star power for a good cause, they'd focus on far-more-obnoxious stars who spend money washing their faces with Evian water or buying their fifth beachside mansion.

But, no. Critics point to an IRS document suggesting that the Bubel/Aiken Foundation raised more than $1 million, with less than a third going to grants, according to MSNBC.

But WRAL-TV in Aiken's hometown of Raleigh, N.C., consulted an independent accountant, who found that about 85 cents of every dollar donated went toward program services.

Also on WRAL-TV, foundation co-founder Diane Bubel said, "We're volunteering and doing something good, and all we hear is complaining."

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OK did a google and found some things...

Have You Heard? Clay Aiken launches fan club

Fans of ‘American Idol’ star Clay Aiken can now become official members of his fan club.

Aiken launched the fan club on his Web site Monday. It costs $29.95 for a one year membership. Fans will receive a letter from Aiken along with an 8x10 photo. They will also receive access to Aiken’s weekly journal.

Fans will have a chance to see Aiken perform this summer in his home state.

Aiken will perform Friday, Aug. 5 at the Booth Amphitheatre at Regency Park in Cary at 8 p.m.



For a few select performers, "American Idol'' has become a dream vehicle through which to enter the music business. But the fact is, success on "American Idol'' doesn't guarantee popular contestants a place in mainstream music once they finish their run on the show.

Just ask Justin Guarini, who quickly faded from the public eye after finishing second to Kelly Clarkson in the inaugural 2002 season of the hit show.

Clay Aiken, who finished second to Ruben Studdard in 2003, embarked on the making of his debut CD, "Measure of a Man,'' knowing he needed to bring more to the table musically than he showed on "American Idol.''

"I think that with "American Idol,' you perform a lot of classic standards stuff, and a lot of times people come out of there wondering, "Will this person have the ability to compete in a mainstream market?'‚'' Aiken said. "I think that's what we were really trying to show with the album. Yeah, I sang "Build Me Up Buttercup' and "Solitaire' and "Mack the

Knife' on that show, but that's not all I can do.''

Whether fans see the songs on "Measure of a Man'' as adding a new dimension to the musical personality he established on "American Idol'' may be open to debate. But there's no arguing with the popularity Aiken … who along with Clarkson is a headliner at the upcoming Toms Riverfest event … continues to enjoy.

"Measure of a Man'' debuted in the fall of 2003 with first-week sales of 613,000, the second highest total ever behind Snoop Dogg's "Doggy Style'' CD. The record spent two weeks at No. 1, has now topped two million in sales, while its lead single, "Invisible,'' became a major hit. A holiday album Aiken released last fall, "Merry Christmas With Love,'' became the highest-debuting holiday release ever, opening at No. 4 on the Billboard magazine album chart and shipping more than

one million copies.

It's all an amazing series of events for someone like Aiken, who never saw singing as anything other than a hobby.

The 25-year-old native of Raleigh, N. C., was an outgoing kid who first began crooning country tunes he heard around the house when he was all of 16 months old.

By age 5, visits to a local Sears store where his mother and stepfather worked would often result in shoppers giving the young Aiken a dollar to get up on counters or on carpet samples and sing. He sang at the Baptist church he attended and, not surprisingly, performed in musicals in high school.

But Aiken said he never thought of music for a career, and in fact was in the midst of earning a degree in education when everything changed. During college, he had begun working with autistic children. The mother of a boy Aiken worked with, Diane Bubel, had heard him sing during visits to her home, and she convinced Aiken to audition for "American Idol.''

"I was going to be a teacher,'' Aiken said. "That was my goal in life, to teach and to do that. I had my life planned out until I was 50 years old. I was going to be a teacher and maybe a principal at some point…Music was not in my five, 10, 20-year plan. And so I would have never auditioned had it not been for someone (Bubel) who convinced me to do it.''

Ironically, Aiken failed in his first audition for the Fox network affiliate in Charlotte. But Bubel convinced him to travel to Atlanta where national auditions were held. He made the show and emerged alongside Studdard as a leading contender to win "American Idol.''

In the season finale, viewers voted Studdard the winner by a margin of less than one percent, but Aiken's showing was easily strong enough to earn him his deal with RCA Records.

Teaching went on hold, and singing became the priority as Aiken went to work on "Measure of a Man'' with the help of label president and music industry legend Clive Davis and an impressive cast of songwriter/producers that included Desmond Child, Clif Magness (who was a major contributor to Avril Lavigne's debut CD), Rick Nowels (known for his work with Cher) and Steve Morales (familiar to many for his work with Christina Aguilera).

Despite the considerable involvement of such heavyweight outside talent, Aiken said he retained a good deal of control over the material that makes up "Measure of a Man.''

"I went in with standards that said, "I don't want to do this, I don't want to do that and I'm OK with doing this,'‚'' Aiken said.

"So they played me, like, 15, 16, 20 songs. I said, "I don't like this one. I don't like this one. I do like this one. This is the kind of sound I like. This is what I'm interested in doing.' And we all bought into the same type of vision that I have.''

Aiken, Lachey make special deliveriesThe Associated Press

Updated: 2:32 p.m. ET July 22, 2005

NEW YORK - Clay Aiken lurked outside a house, Emmylou Harris stopped by a university, Nick Lachey dropped in on a stranger’s workplace and Moby played with dogs while making special deliveries in honor of online retailer Amazon.com’s 10th anniversary.

Over 10 days, 23 Amazon customers received a surprise visit from a celebrity associated with their order. “American Idol” runner-up Aiken dropped off his memoir, “Learning to Sing.” Lachey delivered all three seasons of MTV’s “Newlyweds: Nick & Jessica” on DVD, while musicians Moby and Harris showed up with their CDs.

The moments were captured on tape and the videos are available to view on Amazon.com. Other celebrities who participated in the surprises included Harrison Ford, Don Cheadle, Jeff Bridges, Minnie Driver, Fat Joe and Michael J. Fox.

Says Aiken on his video clip: “It’s very rare that you get to go up and meet fans and especially at their house and surprise them. To come and knock on somebody’s door is kind of a neat experience.”

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July 25, 2005

Possible new song courtesy of the CB and CH:

BACK FOR MORE (Title Code: 321596690)








(none found)






NEW YORK , NY, 10019

Tel. (212) 830-2036

ASCAP website

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Is Clay Aiken turning his back on Hollywood?

Calls music industry types ‘not the most savory characters’

It takes a brave singer to cover the likes of Earth, Wind and Fire. But Clay Aiken isn't afraid.

In fact, when we caught up with him as he prepared for his upcoming tour, he told Access Hollywood's Shaun Robinson that from here on out, he's going to do things his way.

“I think the thing that is hard about L.A. for me is that it is so big and unfortunately people who I have met in L.A. — a lot of people who I work with who work inside the music industry — they are not always the most savory characters,” Clay revealed. “But there are people in the industry who spend too much time on the wrong things.”

Harsh words from Clay — the unlikely heartthrob who has sold over 4 million albums to the legions of “Claymates” worldwide and is now apparently ready to give up the big city livin'.

“I just miss the small town atmosphere,” he added. “It's so much slower and the people that I come into contact with daily in North Carolina don't necessarily have an agenda.”

But before Clay packs his bags, he's got a brand new funky tour and only Access was there during the funky 70s rehearsal session, as Clay sang some classics from Earth, Wind and Fire to the Bee Gees.

For an exclusive peek inside Clay's rehearsal, check out our photo gallery!

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July 28, 2005

Great new article...love it. He sure is reading the boards...

pittsburgh post gazette

Concert Preview: Clay Aiken fills album gap with pop history revue

Thursday, July 28, 2005

By Scott Mervis, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


Clay Aiken

Where: Chevrolet Amphitheatre, Station Square.

When: 8 p.m. Sunday.

Tickets: $25-$49.50; 412-323-1919.


On the day we reach Clay Aiken, he's in the middle of damage control, a rare situation for the "American Idol" runner-up and contemporary poster boy for everything good and wholesome.

The trouble is a TV Guide cover story in which he admits that the entertainment industry has made him "jaded" and then appears to go on to attack the population of greater Los Angeles, where he now lives.

"I said I felt people there put too much emphasis on the outsides and not their insides," Aiken says. "What I meant to say was 'people in the entertainment industry' and I kind of generalized 'entertainment industry' as 'L.A.' and it came out that way. I read it back that way and went, 'Oh, crap,' and it kind of stirred a commotion amongst fans and whatnot, and that's nothing that would ever have happened to me before.

"I'm surrounded by people in the entertainment industry, not people that I work closely with, but people in general in this business, who, sometimes I think their priorities are wrong. But I just said it one way and now I look like a jerk, and I didn't mean it that way at all. That's not the kind of thing that would have happened to me as a teacher. I would have said something, people would have realized what I meant and I would have moved on to the next thing."

Fortunately, Aiken's little commotion comes on the eve of his next thing, the Jukebox Tour, which makes its fourth stop Sunday at the Chevrolet Amphitheatre. It's a concept show he cooked up to bridge the gap between his 2003 debut, "Measure of a Man," and the follow-up that doesn't seem to be coming along as smoothly as the first.

Aiken will start from the '50s and, with liberal use of the medley, will touch on as many as 100 Top 40 songs from then till now, including a few of his own.

"A friend of mine was in a show in Charleston that was a revue of music from the '60s," he says. "I thought, that might not be a bad idea, why don't I just pick a decade? But I couldn't really pick a decade, so I thought, why don't we do them all?"

Aiken's career as a young adult contemporary singer -- starting when he turned up as a geek and mama's boy from North Carolina on the second year of "American Idol" -- has defied the odds and the predictions of resident "Idol" critic Simon Cowell, who said he was better suited to Broadway.

"When I got off the show, I saw something on Broadway, and said, 'That's a compliment because those people can sing,' " Aiken says. "Anybody who can do seven shows a week and just really full-out sing as well as those people do, if that's how good you think I am, thank you. That was kind of a backhanded compliment. That's where some really talented people go, so thanks, Simon."

Rather than going to Broadway, Aiken, who was studying to be a teacher and describes himself as "dodgeball bait" when he was in school, went west and rode that "Idol" well. He has enjoyed sales of more than 3.9 million, running just behind Kelly Clarkson as the biggest-selling Idol. It was all beyond his expectations.

"I had no faith, to be honest with you," he says. "I'm not a pessimist, but I try to be a realist as much as I can and realize that thousands of people are trying to do the same thing that I'm doing and four people are doing it well -- and I'm not sure that I'm one of them. So, I kind of have to realize that it could honestly end any day. I'm enjoying it while I can. I kind of chalk it up to a good summer camp experience. If it doesn't end up working out for the long term, I have memories that I would never have gotten any other way."

One of the keys to his continuing success is the Claymates, a fanatic fan base that follows his every move on fan Web sites and makes sure that any critic who says anything remotely negative about him is deluged with e-mail (this writer got 65 of them once). So, how does Aiken deal with his Claymates and all their high expectations of him?

"It's difficult for me to answer that. I think they do have expectations and sometimes, to be completely honest, it's almost, well, I don't want to use the word 'burdensome' ... sometimes it's tough to live up to everyone's expectations because they are so enthusiastic. And some people want my hair to be short, and some people want my hair to be long. And some people want my hair to be blond, and some people want my hair to be brown. It's hard to please everyone, but in general, they do kind of help keep me sane, because they are so enthusiastic and I'm constantly wondering why the heck people like me. I don't even get it. I get confused every time I see a fan site, I just laugh. I think sometimes they think I'm better than I am. It's tough to live up to their standards, but it's a good challenge for myself."

Which brings us to the long-awaited follow-up to "Measure of a Man," which was scheduled for the fall but is looking more like early spring. Aiken is working with producer Jaymes Foster-Levy, and the challenge is to find 11 or 12 songs he can really get excited about. "We're not going to rush it this time," he says.

Does that mean he wasn't happy with the first one?

"I wouldn't say that," he says. "I was new. We walk off the stage of 'Idol,' and two days later, I was handed my songs by the label: 'Here you go.' Fortunately, I liked them all. I think they did a halfway decent job of picking songs that I sound good on. But a lot of the songs were angst-driven. 'I Survived You' and 'No More Sad Songs' -- it's not necessarily any emotion I wanted to express. There were definitely elements that I thought were good, the songs were good. I was thrilled to work with the producers I got to work with. But this time, I want this one to be everything I want. You kind of have to fail on your own. If I don't have a full stake in it and it flops, I have an opportunity to blame someone else. If I put this together and it flops, at least I can say it flopped on my terms."

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Weekend Hotlist

Pittsburgh Post gazette

Clay Aiken, caught between albums, arrives at the Chevrolet Amphitheatre, Station Square, running through the history of pop music from the '50s on up. To the Claymates, he can do no wrong. But can he pull off Elvis? The Beatles? Will he, like Paul Anka, dare to try Nirvana? Find out at the Chevy at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25-$49.50; 412-323-1919.

Concerts & Clubs

Stamford Advocate

Clay Aiken, Mohegan Sun, 8 p.m. tomorrow

"American Idol" has set popular music back in ways we may not yet even realize. And the fact that kids will be plead with their parents to spend this kind of cash to see this geek is disgusting. Even disposable pop stars used to have to earn a career, not place second in a nationwide karaoke contest and be immediately propelled into one. The Idol-ism of America makes 1980s mall acts like Tiffany look like troubadours. On this tour, Aiken will preview songs from an upcoming album, but mainly stick to pop standards. Aren't you supposed to wait until you're Rod Stewart's age to do that? $40 and $50. Mohegan Sun Arena, Mohegan Sun, Uncasville. (888) 332-5600.

Just Idoling


Aiken's stop at Mohegan Sun will be his second concert on a tour focusing on cover versions of songs from the 1950s through the '90s. Which can't be all that different from Aiken's other concerts, can it? It's not like he has a huge catalogue of original songs. This time, the hits he plunders were originally recorded by Sam Cooke and Elvis, Goo Goo Dolls and doo-woppers. You can expect, too, some tunes from Aiken's “Measure of a Man” and his follow-up CD, whic

h he's recording in the fall.

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Jul 28 2005, 08:54 AM

Runner-up doesn't mean second-best

Norwich Bulletin

Clay Aiken, who performs Friday at Mohegan Sun, took second place in 'Idol's' second season.


Norwich Bulletin

Clay Aiken didn't win "American Idol," but he's become as popular as any contestant from the popular reality show who is not named Kelly Clarkson.

Aiken-mania (or is it Clay-mania) was riding high after he finished second to Ruben Studdard in the second season of "American Idol" and after he released his debut album "Measure of a Man" in October 2003.

Aiken has been fairly quiet this year, but that may change because Aiken will be on the road touring through this summer.

The 26-year old Aiken brings his "Jukebox" tour to the Mohegan Sun Arena Friday. Tickets for the 8 p.m. show are $50 and $40. The Mohegan Sun is the second stop on the tour.

Without a new album to promote, Aiken will sing covers of popular songs going back to the 1950s all the way to modern times, which will include some of Aiken's hits such as "This is the Night."

"This started out as a show just to have some fun with, and as I got more excited about singing these songs, it became a bigger show," Aiken said in a released statement. "It's a chance for people to remember where they were when they heard certain songs."

Expect covers of "Bridge Over Troubled Water," "Solitaire" and hits by Sam Cooke and the Goo Goo Dolls.

Although he has a squeaky-clean image, Aiken has been a part of some controversy lately. The Bubel/Aiken foundation, a charity he co-founded to benefit children with disabilities, has come under scrutiny. News reports cite that a document filed with the Internal Revenue Service revealed that of the more than $1 million the group raised last year, less than a third was handed out in grants. Large amounts went to travel expenses, "professional services" and salaries.

It's doubtful that the story will hurt the family-friendly Aiken's popularity.

Also this week at Mohegan Sun, Destiny's Child performs Wednesday in the Arena and Dick Pillar's 40th Annual Polkabration will be held Friday through Sunday in the Uncas Ballroom.

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"Idol" star sings his Aiken heart out

Published in the Asbury Park Press 07/29/05



Clay Aiken kicked off Toms RiverFest last night with a sprightly, "Hello, New Jersey" and a musical retrospective of the early days of rock'n'roll.

It should come as no surprise to his fans that Aiken spent a good deal of his stage time on cover material. As an alumnus of "American Idol," Aiken earned his fame charming the show's judges and viewers with his ability to put some zip into familiar songs.

Aiken is a young man with old-school appeal — a sweet smile, good manners, a cute Southern accent. No wonder he devoted a chunk of his first set to the hits of Elvis Presley.

Presley, of course, was an trailblazer, whereas Aiken is simply a wholesome pop star.

Aiken became a pop star despite not winning on "American Idol." He was runner-up to Ruben Studdard. Aiken's success — his debut, "Measure Of A Man" and his seasonal follow-up "Merry Christmas With Love," both sold well — a testament to the loyalty of "Idol" viewers.

He'd probably broaden his fan base if given the chance to stretch beyond the ultra-produced pop material expected of pop singers nowadays. Aiken also needs to treat lighthearted material more gently. His renditions of Petula Clark's "Downtown" and The Archies' "Sugar, Sugar" were too emphatic. That approach didn't harm his version of "Unchained Melody" but came across as heavy-handed on breezier songs.

Give Aiken credit for not over-romanticizing the '50s and '60s. His stage set looked like "Happy Days," with a jukebox and perky backdrop, but Aiken reminded his audience that the 1950s brought about "the Red scare" as well as the sock hop. And during the '60s, he said, Americans "fought our own demons and prejudices" through the civil rights movement. Pop music, he said, was a pleasant diversion in a time of tumultuous change.

True enough. The same could be said of the role of "American Idol" in this new century. Sure, Aiken is a made-for-TV superstar, but maybe the goofy fun of it all is a balm to viewers weary of war and terrorism.

To the teenagers and fortysomethings who cheered for Aiken and waved posters at the Pine Belt stage last night, the singer was as welcome a treat as was the sharp drop in humidity.

A note to any ticket-holders who were upset when they arrived shortly before the scheduled 8:30 p.m. show time to find Aiken already on stage: It was Aiken's decision to move up the official start time to 7:30 p.m., though he took the stage closer to 8 p.m.

Toms RiverFest continues through Sunday. Country star Keith Urban headlines tonight, followed tomorrow by "American Idol" winner Kelly Clarkson. The rock band Maroon 5 closes the festival Sunday.

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Clay Sings on Good Morning America

July 29, 2005 — Clay Aiken may have been the runner-up to Ruben Studdard in the second season of "American Idol," but to millions he's No. 1.

Aiken's loyal fans got a real treat this morning when he debuted a new song called "Coming Back for More" and performed Elvis Presley's "Suspicious Minds" at New York City's Bryant Park as part of "Good Morning America's" Summer Concert Series.

The 26-year-old began his Jukebox Summer Tour 2005 on Thursday in Tom's River, N.J. Aiken will visit 25 cities and sing covers of more than 70 songs from five decades of rock 'n' roll on the tour, his fifth in the past two years. The tour will finish Sept. 1.

In addition to performing, his work as a UNICEF ambassador has been keeping him busy.

"It's the closest thing I can do now to being in a classroom and teaching," said Aiken, who studied special education at UNC-Charlotte. He recently returned from northern Uganda, where he visited "night commuters" — children who must leave their homes in the countryside every night to sleep in UNICEF shelters to avoid being abducted by a rebel group. In March, Aiken visited children living in camps for tsunami survivors in Aceh, Indonesia.

Aiken said he has decided to leave Los Angeles and return to his hometown of Raleigh, N.C. "I like L.A., I like California, but there's a different energy there," he said.

In June 2003, Aiken made history when his debut single, "This is the Night" went to No. 1 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart, selling more than 392,000 copies in its first week and beating Elton John's 1997 record for "Candle in the Wind." In October 2003, he released his first album, "Measure of a Man." His second, "Merry Christmas with Love," came out last November.

Despite his success in the music industry, Aiken hasn't forgotten his first passion: helping children with disabilities. Shortly after "American Idol" ended, he created the Bubel/Aiken Foundation, named after an autistic boy he took care of while he was at UNC-Charlotte. The foundation provides grants, services and inclusive programs for children with special needs and their typical peers.

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Cary preps for Clay Day

Cary Mayor Ernie McAlister will declare Friday "Clay Aiken Day" during a speech at a meeting of the Triangle native's fan club, the Claymates.

The Claymates are meeting for breakfast that morning to prepare for Aiken's performance in Cary's Koka Booth Amphitheatre that evening.

"This is a big event for Cary," McAlister said. "This just gets it started out on a good note."

But do not expect the retired banker to join the Claymates soon. "I don't have his CD out in the car right now, if you know what I mean," he said.

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Clay Aiken to appear on 'All My Children'

Clay Aiken to appear on 'All My Children'

Jul. 30, 2005 at 2:02PM

Clay Aiken, currently on a 25-city U.S. tour, will appear on the ABC's "All My Children" playing himself being interviewed by Erica Kane.

      Kane, played by Susan Lucci, will have the singer on her new talk show. The show will air Sept. 14.

      Aiken, who sang three songs from his Jukebox Summer Tour 2005 on ABC's "Good Morning America" said he has decided to leave Los Angeles and return to his hometown of Raleigh, N.C.

      "I like L.A., I like California, but there's a different energy there," he said.

      In addition four singing tours and selling nearly 4 million albums in two years, Aiken was named a UNICEF ambassador.

      "It's the closest thing I can do now to being in a classroom and teaching," said Aiken, who earned a degree in special education at University of North Carolina-Charlotte. He told "Good Morning America" he recently visited Uganda, where he visited "night commuters" -- children who must leave their homes in the countryside every night to sleep in UNICEF shelters to avoid being abducted by a rebel group.

      Last March, Aiken visited camps for tsunami survivors in Indonesia.


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:):PB) where is clay next tour going to start after spring? i want to take my vacation then thanks

this is quite an old thread...it is from 2005...

About his next tour...there has been a few rumors...Jaymes supposedly told someone that it will be sooner than we think. Jesse told someone that he will be with Clay this summer...then Clay used to say they will be touring in February. If there will be a tour this winter we should be hearing the announcements soon...

IF there will be news it will be psoted in the main thread in Lets talk about Clay...

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