ldyjocelyn

#54: Clay is like a box of chocolates (with a pickle on the side)

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The breakfast was great. Good food, good friends. I met so many people from Canada at this Gala. It was really refreshing. I'll let FromClaygary tell you about the raffle but I sold quite a few beads. Since I just got home, I'll give a report later.

Since some people love to jump on the flaws of a performance or an event, we are always going to see the negative accentuated. Being in the third row from the stage, I can only tell you how great I thought his voice was. Also, Clay was in great humor teasing Shaun and others. Although I'm no fan of Moon River, his version was lovely. I also don't think the sound from cameras rather than other audio recording media comes off so well.

As far as the selection of songs, Clay said the he selected songs appropriate to the event. I remember when fans said they would buy anything he recorded including the phone book. I guess I never thought of Clay as a rocker. He is an individual who does what he likes and what he thinks is best suited to his voice. And I wouldn't expect him to bend to what a few fans want or even what anyone else wants.

The entire weekend was a good time and I'm looking forward to next year's.

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treenuts said:

But I have to say, it's been rough reading around the boards today. I'm so sad that many have sounded very disappointed in the performance part of the evening and I admit I am more than a little concerned after watching/listening to the clack. He did seem nervous and rusty as Corabeth reported, but he has sounded a little rough for awhile now. I love him so much and I don't give a rat's ass what he sings as long as he sings like the Clay Aiken I fell in love with! I wish I could give him and everyone in the fandom a great big hug today! I think many of us are in need of it. I truly hope he is ok and I am planning on him working hard to get back to the level of perfection I know he expects from himself

Heh, not rough for me, because I am only on the Clay boards for Clay and don't really give a shit about the negative stuff.

I wouldn't hang out with that sort of thing in real life, why would I care about it or want to read it on the boards?

At least one thing is clear after all these years, I can predict who is gonna find fault and skip over that stuff.

Gets kind of amusing, which is the only saving semi-grace.

Heeee.....I am not so generous with hugs, either. :-)

I do wish people who only live to criticize would fall in love with Adam or someone else, though!

I would love to thank those who provided recaps and pictures, I appreciate them very very much.

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I do wish people who only live to criticize would fall in love with Adam or someone else, though!

They would do the same thing to Adam--criticizing is their claim to fame and they're not about to give it up out of some little thing like compassion for a man who just lost his beloved grandfather.

Shitheads.

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Well, since I know I am not one of those who only live to criticize, and although I DO appreciate Adam's talent, I won't take any jabs personally. ;).... I think it's great that those of you who were there and have come back to emphasize positive are allowed to do so and are well received. I know some others who were at the very same event and heard and saw the very same Clay Aiken and have very different reports and reactions, so it's not just the opinions of those who were there and who were not, I don't think.

I have to think that Clay would expect people's opinions to be all over the place. God knows he's not wary of expressing his frank opinion of another singer's performances--both in praise and pretty blunt condemnation! Clay just "happened" to only listen to Lambert during that (IMO) horrendous Ring of Fire performance and yet made some pretty damning conclusions about his voice and style in general. I, on the other hand, have followed and listened to Clay for six years' worth of performances and so can say with much more 'authority', I believe, that the quality of Clay's voice last night doesn't compare well with what I've heard from him before. I'm NOT basing a doom-and-gloom prophecy of any kind for him as a result of last night's vocal showing; I'm just saying that my ears do NOT hear in last night's songs the same professional delivery, mastery of range, or tonal quality that we know he has exemplified over the past years.

I'm not conjecturing about the possible reasons for that; I'm just saying that my conclusion is a valid one---to my own senses. I hope he is deeply involved in and excited about singing still and will create a great product that showcases that VOICE that I know still resides in him. I will say, though, that if he really has serious intentions on being a vocal performer as a career, he'll need to find a better balance between exercising and honing his God-given talent, and retreating from public performances or taking a break for his personal life, etc., for so long. Again, this is my opinion.

He's good---ridiculously better than good, actually---but he's not exempt from getting 'rusty'.

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I do wish people who only live to criticize would fall in love with Adam or someone else, though!

They would do the same thing to Adam--criticizing is their claim to fame

Yes, I think that's the idea behind djs111's suggestion and it's brilliant! ... soo tempted to connect some of these 'fan critics' with the Aack providers and/or provide gafiating tutorials.

(Scarlett on merrieeee's netbook)

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What a great weekend! So proud of the National Inclusion Project, which truly is making a difference in the lives of thousands of children nationwide.

Loved meeting everyone at the Gala and brunch. It's always wonderful to be able to put a face and real name to board friends. Sometimes at events such as the Gala or in restaurants and crowds, I am at a disadvantage because my chair prevents me from manuevering around and mingling the way I want to, so please come by and introduce yourselves and speak, if you have a chance. I really would like to meet everyone and I don't bite...well not most of the time, anyway. :hahaha:Merrieeee, I am so sorry-I don't think we managed to connect- maybe next time? Safe travels to all FCA friends traveling over the next few days.

Thanks to FromClaygary for all of her hard work putting the brunch together. Also, thanks to Fear for her Beads for Life commitment-pretty things, for a great cause...can't beat that! And Fear, thanks for being my ride, my road wheels as I call them. There are a lot of times I would not be able to participate without the kindness of friends like you. And that is also inclusion in action! :bighug:

We had no internet in our rooom at the Sheraton all weekend, so I'm just geting ready to download my first clack. Clay's voice may not have been perfect last night, but I still prefer an imperfect Clay Aiken to any other voice on the planet. I thought My Eyes Adored You and Moon River were beautiful. I heard that Faye's mother was sitting with her, and there's a part of me that wonders if that also might have affected his concentration on Grace of God, or maybe I am just projecting. I love that beautiful, funny, caring, compassionate guy...probably more than I should. I thought he seemed a bit subdued all night, but understandably so, so I say please cut him some slack. To be honest, I could not see his face very well at all last night, but from the photos I've seen today....I just want to give him a hug. Or fifty.

So much more I could say about the Gala, but for now: Back for More....yeah baby. :rockinkitty:

:04: Congratulations to FromClaygary and all of our Canadian friends on creating the first international Beta Alpha, InCanada!! You rock!

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Finally arrived in Burlington Vt at 9:00 pm, leaving for Montreal tomorrow at 12:00pm by bus to Montreal. Had a wonderful weekend. Thanks to fromclaygary and Fear for organizing the breakfast and beads sale, love my necklace and bracelet. Hope we all get together again in 2010. Just love Clay can't wait to see him again in a real concert, this short one was quite satisfying to see him as real Clay.

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I floved Moon River! I hope it's on the album!

:D

It's new to me!

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I wish that people who are criticizing Clay for last night would just take a moment to think about what he has been through this past year. For God's sake, the man just had major jaw surgery earlier this year. He's already told us that he has not done a lot of singing for quite awhile, and part of that had to do with the surgery. Plus most of last year he was in Spam and not really singing like he does. Then his grandfather just died last week. What the hell do people want from him.

I did hear rough notes, I don't count the forgotten lines cuz that's just Clay, but I thought he sounded beautiful. It was actually easier for me to hear his voice on the clack than live because the acoustics weren't working for me. The others at the table didn't have the same problem so it was probably me, but his voice is still the most beautiful on the planet. As far as song choices, I've always loved Moon River since I heard Audrey Hepburn sing it in Breakfast at Tiffany's, and Clay's version was wonderful with the deep notes.

I really hate to hear people say stuff about how Clay's song choices are going to doom his career. Although there may be long time fans who are going to complain about it, or possibly even leave, there may be many people who will be tuned in, especially if he is marketed right. It's not just little gray haired grannies who like some of these older songs, there are many young people who hate much of the crap on the radio as well, and who are looking for great music. I think fans need to leave the worrying about Clay's career to him and the people around him, and just enjoy or not enjoy the music. Me, I'll enjoy it no matter what he sings because it's all about the voice for me. Well, the man is damn fine too.

And since my post is still less than canfly's tomes, I just want to add that I enjoyed seeing so many of you this weekend and hope we have more opportunities soon. ldyj, glad I finally met up with you. And KAndre, you are truly unique.

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I floved Moon River! I hope it's on the album!

:D

It's new to me!

Clayzy, thanks for proving my point. I floved it too.

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And KAndre, you are truly unique.

heeee... Yes she is.. can't wait for her recap... you are writing a recap aren't you K?

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I'm back (and in time to watch TAR! Yay me!) All I can say, if vocal "perfection" is the only goal for a live performance, no wonder ProTools is doing a booming business - and IMO, to the detriment of performing. He's has sounded better - he's sounded worse...he happens to do performances that I love. Do I love everything's he done? Well, no...and a perfect example of that was when he was whispering instead of singing MGUCL - technically good, but I hated the stylistic choice. But that was just me (and whoever else didn't like it). There is not a performer out there who bats 1000 every outing - and questioning the "serious intentions" of someone who only hit 800 one night is really picky to me (of course, I have no idea what batting a 10000 or 800 actually means - I assume someone like Babe Ruth batted a thousand and Mickey Mantle batted like 800 since I heard of Babe Ruth more).

It's art- when he's up there on stage live, there's no do overs or take it from the top or backspace and correct - the man put on a show. Some ain't happy with the show (some for more legitimate reasons than others), that's their prerogative as well. For a charity Gala of NIP's level - it was freaking awesome. And I have an mp3 of a couple of new songs that Clay sounds fantastic on. I got to flirt with a couple of hot guys. Ate some kick ass stuff. For $200 and my flight, I'm ahead of the game.

I'll work on a recap - since y'all have been such good minions. And Couchie, I was only confused with you once! Ha Ha!

Thank you justclay12 (and yes, everyone else who saw me this weekend is welcome to praise the glory that was my ensemble - tasteful, understated and elegant was I!)

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There is not a performer out there who bats 1000 every outing - and questioning the "serious intentions" of someone who only hit 800 one night is really picky to me (of course, I have no idea what batting a 10000 or 800 actually means - I assume someone like Babe Ruth batted a thousand and Mickey Mantle batted like 800 since I heard of Babe Ruth more).

I'll work on a recap - since y'all have been such good minions. And Couchie, I was only confused with you once! Ha Ha!

Thank you justclay12 (and yes, everyone else who saw me this weekend is welcome to praise the glory that was my ensemble - tasteful, understated and elegant was I!)

BWAH HA HA

First of all you have me all atwitter for talking sports in your own unique way. You may not understand what you wrote but I get it 1000% heee But I'll have you know that in baseball you are a superstar if you bat 350 or 400.

LOL... and how many times were you Berkeley or Ethel? That's always a fun part of my Clay experiences.

And finally..I must see outfit. hee

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You know a weekend was awesomely spectacular when on Sunday evening we're still in such a stupor that it affects our usual superior abilities in math, sports trivia and money management.

ps. couchie, K only recalls the time when someone in an elevator mistook her for Angela ("You were wonderful! So, what's it like to perform with Clay Aiken?")

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ps. couchie, K only recalls the time when someone in an elevator mistook her for Angela ("You were wonderful! So, what's it like to perform with Clay Aiken?")

heee I can only imagine her response.

I want to thank you again Scarlett for your generosity and trying to get me to that gala. I appreciate it more than you can ever know.

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loving the recaps -- Canfly thanks for the clack!! And thanks everyone else for future clack heee.

YW. Not a camcorder that I've used before. I wasn't as close as some, so I ventured into digital zoom territory and it kept going out of focus. I found that when I included the guitar player, it stayed in focus better. I've been sick, so it was a tad shakey/wavery. Not my bestest work.

I know... Excuses, excuses, lol.

But the sound's good on mine. :clap:

I see that I accidentally posted the same link twice last night instead of posting 2 different ones. Here's the one I missed but it's already vaulted at CV, so guess I got it right there:

Description: 2009 Gala banter and My Eyes Adored You

You can use the following link to retrieve your file:

http://www.sendspace.com/file/79ok07

Thanks everyone for the recaps and pictures etc.

Is there no video of Patrick Henry Hughes?

Which shirt is in the museum in Raleigh? I was thinking that it was the BOTW one but aparently it isn't.

Scarlett was at the next table over from me and I glanced over at her a few times and she got EVERYTHING (except when she was changing tapes). I only did when Clay was on stage. I spoke with Scarlett after and we both saw our tapes running out prior to Moonriver and changed tapes during his pre-Moonriver banter. I almost changed when Faye was talking. Should have. Ah wells... In the end, it would have fit cuz there was 5 min left and Moonriver wasn't that long.

I'd better refrain from commenting too much on the singing performances cuz I'm tired, sick and kinda feeling crappy right now and as Justclay kept pointing out all weekedn, I'm even more of a picky bitch when I'm sick than I normally am, lol. I couldn't hear that well due to an ear infection and swollen ear canals, so I wasn't in the "blown away" camp but I'll just say, my feelings align fairly closely to Muski's, lol. What I could hear, I though that he sounded a little rough/rusty in the first couple of songs and like he was straining. Obviously, he hasn't been singing that much and he's rusty (presumably to rest the jaw). By the time he got to Moonriver, his voice was warmed up and it sounded MUCH better. Loved Moonriver. Verra nice. I'll be honest. I would have loved to hear him do one more song and rock out on Ashes or something, seeing he had a band instead of just a piano.

I was glad to not be at the very back but do wish that I could have been closer cuz from what I could tell from the pictures of the silver/gold table people with Clay, he was looking really gooooooooood. BTW, I thought that he looked younger in some of the pictures.

I'll try to cap some more tomorrow. I've called in sick for tomorrow cuz my voice is totally shot (got worse from the airplane air...first flight from Raleigh to Charlotte had REALLY bad air) and second from Charlotte to Buffalo...well, my ears crackled a squeaked and almost cleared out cuz we climbed up really high. I could hear out of my right ear for the first time in 4 days! It was great...while it lasted. Was baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad coming down and now my left ear plugged solid, so can't hear well out of either one. I'm feeling kinda "foggy" and it ain't the Aiken foggy. Yeah, yeah....poor me.

Thanks to Fromclaygary for organizing the breakfast. :BlowKiss:

Scarlett, I should have asked what room you were in. I missed a clack party apparently, lol?

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HBD, ClayIzzaQT!!! (I'm sorry that our conversation was cut short today :sorry: and I hope to see you again sometime soon!)

:birthday9:

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:GM_FCA:

42 Days Until Clay's Birthday!

:yahoo:

105 Days until GFI!

:yahoo:

Happy Birthday to all celebrating!

Everyone have a great day!

Kim

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Happy birthday ClayIzzaQT! It was great meeting you this weekend...

I got back fairly late last night, so I really haven't had a time to comment much on the stuff from the weekend, other than my "in the moment" ramblings Saturday night. But really, my feelings haven't changed all that much; I was thrilled to be there, I was thrilled to learn more about the Project, I was totally impressed by how smoothly the whole event ran, and I was in awe of a man named Clay Aiken. Yes, there were cracks here and there, but as KAndre (who, BTW, looked stunning) said, he's still better live than 90% of the pop/rock performers out there (IMO, anyway). As for his song choices? Maybe I was overcome with emotion over Moon River because that was one of my Mom's favorite songs -- but maybe I was overcome just because he sang the shiznit out of that song as well. My Eyes Adored You was never really a favorite for me, but again, he put some nuance in it that made me love it. Did I think it was perfect? Hell, no. But I personally don't love perfection. I think the flaws make him more human. And if I want perfection in a performance, I'll stay home and listen to the CDs.

treenuts, thanks for the hug. I totally understand where you were coming from yesterday. It can be difficult to read opinions that don't quite mesh with your own, especially when they are stated rather strongly. However, if there is anything I've learned in 6 years of being in this fandom, is that there are always going to be differing opinions on performances, and there's not much I (or Clay for that matter) can do about them.

What bothers me sometimes about "opinions" though is when they do actually turn into criticisms. Another thing I've learned is that being critical of Clay, IMO, just isn't all that much fun. I mean -- is he going to change the way he sings, or the songs he sings, just because I'm writing on a message board? God, I hope not. However, to me, I get the feeling that some believe he will. Blargh.

I told someone over the weekend that this fandom's relationship with Clay continues to be like a marriage, to me. Lots of highs, lots of lows, and lots of "in the middle" as well. But the point I was trying to make is that I realized when I married my husband that I had to accept him, warts and all. There was no way I personally was going to change him. That doesn't mean he won't change over time, nor will I. The same thing with Clay. His core being will always be the same, even though there will be changes in him, and in my relationship with him as a fan. Acceptance is a good thing -- even when Clay throws curve balls that you least expect.

treenuts, I said "balls" just for you. Heh.

It was so great meeting everyone this weekend, especially at the breakfast yesterday. FromClaygary, you totally rock -- that place was fantastic! preden, I had a blast rooming with you, and I look forward to seeing you again soon.

Sigh. Now I have to get ready for work, and also put my bathroom back together. Not to mention that I have to stay at work until 7:00 for the next two nights. I hate this "work late" crap!

P.S. Anyone know why my avatar isn't moving? It's supposed to be!

P.P.S. From the CH:

Philanthropy Journal

Clay Aiken's Charity Aims to Expand

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. -- The charity co-founded by Clay Aiken, the Raleigh native and American Idol runner-up, has changed its name to better reflect its mission of integrating children with disabilities into school, after-school and summer-camp activities.

Formerly known as the Bubel/Aiken Foundation, the Research Triangle Park-based National Inclusion Project also is stepping up its efforts to better promote its work and generate more contributions to support its programs.

"Our challenge is building awareness not only about what we do but who we are, and through that awareness getting people who will support us and help others and really make a difference," says Jerry Aiken, who is Clay Aiken's uncle and executive director of the nonprofit.

Based on a senior project Clay Aiken worked on at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, where he majored in special education, he launched the nonprofit in July 2003 with Diane Bubel, the mother of a young man with disabilities Aiken had worked with as part of his student project.

When Aiken mentioned his student project during an American Idol broadcast in the spring of 2003, fans contributed roughly $50,000, even though he had not yet formed the nonprofit.

The National Inclusion Project receives support through revenue generated by Aiken's fans wrapping gifts in their local communities, and through an annual gala in Raleigh and annual golf tournament in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.

The group mainly develops a curriculum, and provides training and funding, to "help open doors" and provide an "inclusive offering" for kids who attend summer camps and after-school programs.

With assets just over $1 million, Jerry Aiken says, the nonprofit in the year ended Dec. 31, 2008, provided over $825,000 in funding for 31 different programs throughout the United States.

And with a $500,000 federal grant, the group over three years developed an evidence-based inclusive service-learning curriculum that teachers in elementary, middle and high schools can use to talk to their students about disabilities and help them select a community-service project.

Now, in partnership with Johns Hopkins University and Mitsubishi Electric Corp., the National Inclusion Project aims to integrate that curriculum with Let's All Play, the inclusive program it developed for after-school and recreational summer-camp programs.

Tested at YMCAs in Raleigh and in Concord, N.C., and Kansas City, Kan., the program has served over 70 groups.

Overall, the National Inclusion Project has invested $4.5 million in its work, supported over 110 programs and served over 20,000 children through its inclusive camp program, says Jerry Aiken, who spent 30 years working in the telecommunications industry for companies like Nortel and Fujitsu, where he served as vice president for global customer services.

Expanding those programs will require raising more money, Jerry Aiken says.

The group's "Wrapping for Inclusion" program, for example, generated $60,000 during the holiday season last year, down because of the recession from $100,000 it generated a year earlier, he says.

On Oct. 17, the National Inclusion Project will host its sixth annual Champions Gala at the Marriott City Center in downtown Raleigh.

The event will honor Mitsubishi Electric; Patrick Henry Hughes, a student with substantial disabilities who plays multiple instruments in the marching band at the University of Louisville; and the Sparkle Effect, a high-school cheerleading squad in Iowa that includes girls with disabilities.

And in February, the National Inclusion Project will host its annual golf tournament at the Mirasol Country Club in Palm Beach Gardens.

"We are a small foundation," Jerry Aiken says. "We've got some really good things going, and we're really trying to make a difference."

Todd Cohen | October 19, 2009

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Making this a new post, I hope -- if someone finds the total amount raised for the Project on Saturday night, could you please post it? Thanks!

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Wow, I think it's warmer here than it was in Raleigh. :cryingwlaughter: It was nice to come home to, anyways, although my son took a picture of the snow we missed while we were away. Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!

I'm uploading disneykid's clack to the CH vault and also to sendspace right now, so I will post those links when I get them. I'm starting with Patrick Henry Hughes because he was seriously amazing. Unfortunately our clips are only partial songs but I'm hoping someone else caught the full performances. I am always so inspired with the award recipients each year, and this year was no exception.

I seem to have picked up a bit of a sore throat in the past day, but I'm hoping it's just from the dry air in the plane or something. I don't remember the last cold I've had, it's been that long. Back to my veggie, fruit and herb diet today. ;) Hope everyone else is feeling ok!

It was really great to see so many FCAers this past weekend. I'm sorry if I didn't get a chance to say hi to you, there were just so many minutes to spare! But what a great time we had.......can't wait to do it again soon (hopefully). Florida in February is looking mighty tempting. :rainbowsmile:

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LOVE the article. They are doing so much with not a lot of money. I hope they are successful in their goals to expand. Somehow I think they will be.

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JUst in case there is any doubt:

I LOVE CLAY AIKEN

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