Sunday, December 28, 2008

I Survived You



He sure did. Clay Aiken is a survivor.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Duet with Bing Crosby

I was watching this tonight and enjoying Clay's beautiful voice and how well he harmonized with Mr. Crosby.



Peace on Earth. Can it be?


~~~

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Jukebox Tour

Clay Aiken started off the Summer Tour of 2005 when someone put a quarter in the JukeBox





50s banter + Unchained Melody



Elvis





The 60s



Solitaire



Motown Era









Ain't No Mountain High Enough



70s





Banter + Bridge Over Troubled Water



80s





Sailing



90s





I Can't Make You Love Me



Measure of a Man Medley



A Thousand Days



Tears Run Dry



Back For More



Invisible



Credits



~~~

Friday, December 05, 2008

Stage 46: American Idol is Fixed!!



You may remember that I blogged about this book in October.

This is an excerpt from the book.

Stage 46: The Reality of Reality Television

During this first weekend in town and in between the photo shoots and rehearsals, the contestants signed their lives away. They gave up all their rights for performances and music for the duration of the show and for several months, even years, after the show ended. While signing the contracts, they were promised two full days off a week, usually the day after the show and one day on the weekend. The other weekend day would be spent in a recording studio or shooting cheesy music videos for one of the show’s several sponsors. This agreement of two days off did not last long, as the parent company pimped the contestants out every way they could: from ice cream to lip gloss to board games and video games. Each time another deal came through, the contestants were required to do a photo shoot so they would have fresh photos and videos to go along with the products and help with the marketing.

After two weeks into the live shows, the only time off the contestants had was at night, when they slept. The contestants were a little disappointed to learn that they would be earning considerably less per week than they all had originally thought. One would think that the contestants would be paid very well, especially since they were bringing in millions of dollars a week for the parent company. This was hardly the case: they were paid the bare minimum each week for their performances. I am sure it was more than any of them made on a weekly basis before they started the show, but they could have been paid a lot more. In my opinion, they deserved more, as did everyone else involved with the show, including myself.

The songs the contestants sang each week came from a preapproved list, and the singers each had the opportunity to pick the song they wanted. Once they picked the song, they rehearsed for a day, singing the song that they chose, then Andy and James would have the opportunity to listen to each contestant perform their song. If they did not like the way the singers performed the song, they were forced to change it, even if the contestant did not like or wasn’t familiar with any of the other songs that were on the weekly preapproved list.

This was very unfortunate; some of the contestants were critiqued by the judges harshly over the way they sang or because of their song choice, when in all actuality Andy and James forced them to sing the songs that they did.

To me this was always odd. I had my suspicions even before I started working on the show that people on the inside might have a hand in crowning the winner. Nothing confirmed my suspicions more than something that happened one day during rehearsals, which are closed-door. Only a limited number of people are allowed onto the soundstage: the rehearsals were done with contestant stand-ins, not the true contestants.

This was always off-limits to me, but in the middle of season I was given an urgent message to be delivered to a staff member who just happened to be sitting in on the rehearsals. So I made my way downstairs and over to the door that led to the soundstage where a security guard was standing. After reading the message, he opened the door and let me enter.

I entered from behind the stage and walked along the right wall, around to the front of the stage where the individual was sitting. Andy and James were up on stage with the stand-ins, making sure the camera operators knew how the elimination was going to unfold, where to focus the camera, and which contestant to follow. I thought this was weird: the performances would not be happening until the next day, and the eliminations a day after that, so there was no way to know who was going to be eliminated. Voting hadn’t even taken place yet for the show that they were rehearsing for.

All the stand-ins had the contestants’ names whom they were standing in for written on two large stickers, one on their chest and one on their back. It was very clear who was representing whom. I stood in the back for a few minutes because the person I needed to deliver the message to was busy discussing the show with Andy and James. I didn’t want to interrupt, so I waited my turn.

I continued to watch as Andy and James could not make up their minds as to how they wanted to make the elimination happen. After running out of options and getting frustrated, they used a previous routine that was used a couple of weeks before.

I waited until Andy announced that the rehearsals were wrapped for the day before I delivered the message and returned to the office upstairs. As I watched the live show unfold the next day, I thought that all of the contestants did very well, except for two of the male contestants. I figured that both would be in the bottom group the following day and that one of them would be eliminated from the show and sent packing. Many of the people in the office thought the same thing that I did, so we were all shocked when one of the best performers was eliminated the following day.

After the office calmed down following the shock of the elimination, I finished the last few things I needed to get done before my fifteen-hour day was over and I could head home. While I was driving home, it dawned on me that the person who had been eliminated was the same person who had been eliminated during the closed-door rehearsals just two days before.

That was too much of a coincidence for me. From that day on, I figured that people on the inside had a hand in how the results of the show were handled.


Or in less polite terms, your vote doesn't count.
~~~

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

O Holy Night: The Measure of a Singer

Clay Aiken is unparalleled as a live performer. Listen to him sing O Holy Night in concert. The video is not a professionally produced one by any means, but his voice overcomes that handicap. At one point he appears to be communicating with one of his sound engineers. Don't let that distract you too much. Its a live show :)



and for those who think that David Archuletta is the second coming or that he is Clay Aiken 2.0, here's David's version.



Here is Josh Groban, for those who think he sets some kind of standard. This is live from the Vatican and a professional production. No really!




and for the hearing impaired, here's Clay's O Holy Night in ASL.



What do you think?

Monday, December 01, 2008

Talks about Fatherhood, Spamalot and Coming Out



Clay Aiken talks about why he returned to do another run in Spamalot and about life as a father. He and Jaymes Foster (Parker's mother) are raising the baby together and Clay talks about what he does best as a father. He is good at quieting Parker when he cries and is unfazed by diaper duty. Clay admits "He owns us".

Today's ET teaser indicates that there will be more on Parker's surgery and how he and Jaymes coped with it. Clay also talks about his apprehension and how he braced himself to be boo-ed by the Spamalot audience the day after he came out as a gay man.

Needless to say, he was pleasantly surprised at how accepted he was and how normal his life is. He admits that his friends were right and he is glad he did it.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Long and the Short of it

Spamalot's Clay Aiken in costume as the dashing but not-so-brave Sir Robin.


Well, Rosie Live! came and went. Clay's 90 seconds didn't make or break the show and fortunately his bit was not one of the show's lowlights.

After reading dozens of reviews and comments, here it is in a nutshell.

_ There was too much Rosie.
_ There were lots of talented guests.
_ The talented guests were underused.
_ Clay Aiken should have sang.
_ There should have been more Harry Connick singing.
_ Poor Gloria Estefan. She's much better than the material she was given.
_ Jane Krakowski too.
_ The live theater setting was too dark and didn't translate to TV.
_ The stage setting, low level production and bad camera work looked cheap.
_ Nobody cared about Rosie's undergarments or cleavage.
_ Nobody wanted to hear about Rosie's political views.
_ She should not have tried to sing with Liza or Gloria.
_ The wrong guy pushed the pie in Conan's face.
_ Kathy should leave the comedy to professionals.
_ I'm told it was Alanis Morrissette but I think it was a palsied Bjork on LSD...
_ Ne-Yo was a No-Yo.
_ No more spinning rugs or random tap dancing.
_ No more dancing cupcakes. Ever.


Ellen has her variety special tonight. Break a leg!

~~~

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Watch Rosie Live! Tonight





USA Today.com

Rosie O'Donnell is ready to 'Live' a little on variety show

NEW YORK — It's Rosie with a Z.
Even comedian Rosie O'Donnell can't quite believe she's on stage with Broadway legend Liza Minnelli this rainy Tuesday morning. The two performers are rehearsing City Lights, which opens Rosie Live, an NBC variety special hosted by O'Donnell that's airing tonight (8 p.m. ET/PT).

During rehearsals, the two women shimmy across a Midtown stage working on a tune Minnelli hasn't sung in 30 years.

"Brightly lit by pretty city lights!" the two women sing in tandem. "Love those city lights."

"Good," O'Donnell says, nodding to Minnelli after they complete their duet.

On stage, O'Donnell, 46, is both practical and comical. "It's gonna be a very gay show, whether they know it or not. Gay is the new black — or at least the new pink," O'Donnell quips to the backup dancers and crew.

In fact, Rosie Live is meant to be neither political or controversial. It's an hour-long show featuring performances from Alanis Morissette, Clay Aiken, Gloria Estefan and 30 Rock's Jane Krakowski. If the special does well, it could become a series.

"It's like being shot out of a cannon. Tomorrow is going to be fantastic. I'm so nervous!" Krakowski says after a second performance of her number, a parody of You Gotta Get a Gimmick.

Those who work with O'Donnell say she's a perfectionist.

"For her, it's all about surrounding herself with people she likes and trusts," says Rosie Live executive producer David Friedman. "She's got a million ideas. Everyone says that (she's difficult), but she knows what she wants to do and she wants people around her who can execute and work hard. There is nothing difficult about her."


~~~

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Believe In Zero!

UNICEF Ambassadors Clay Aiken, Lucy Liu, Mia Farrow, Alyssa Milano, Laurence Fishburne, Joel Madden and others proclaim their belief in zero: a day when no children die from preventable causes.

Watch!



Visit http://ibelieveinzero.org to join the effort.

~~~

Saturday, November 01, 2008

What Is So Special About Clay?

People often ask this question and there are many correct answers. This is just one of them. We all know that he is a phenomenal singer and that his heart is in the right place because he is a selfless advocate and a tireless ambassador for children worldwide, but this is an example of his connection with his fans. What other artist would do this night after night for months throughout a concert tour?

Friday, October 31, 2008

Clay Extends His Condolences to Jennifer Hudson and her Family.





"There are no words that you can find to give somebody like that. I don't even know where to begin, I've been upset by this myself," Clay said

Clay Aiken also knows that the Hudson family loss has been felt all over the country. "I know the whole country's thoughts and prayers are with her and her entire extended family ... and anyone who was touched by her mother, or her brother, or her nephew."

The new dad also tells Jann Carl that he hopes that the individuals responsible are found so that Jennifer and her loved ones can find some closure.

ETOnline

~~~

Thursday, October 30, 2008

STAGE 46: Getting Ready To Hit The Shelves



This looks like it might be an interesting AI Expose. I don't see a release date yet on the site. On the Stage 46 myspace page some former AI contestants are on the author's friends list. I can see Bucky Covington, Phil Stacey, Elliott Yamin, Chris Richardson, Constantine Maroulis, Jessica Sierra, Blake Lewis and Jim V.

STAGE 46: The Reality of Reality Television gives a hilarious and eye opening look into what goes on behind the camera of a Hollywood set. Based on first hand accounts compiled by interviews with former reality television employees, Stage 46 documents what it is really like to work on a top rated TV show.

Ben Walker, a small town guy from Northern California, lands a job in Hollywood that a million people are standing in line waiting for. Hired as a production assistant on the number one reality show, Ben quickly finds himself surrounded by drug abuse, sex scandals, money laundering, unfair employment practices, and daily verbal attacks from the executives. When Ben starts to realize that this so called family show, where the contestants are unknowingly forced to sign over their lives, may not be something he wants to be a part of any longer, he decides to leave the dark world of Hollywood behind. But before leaving, he finds himself turning the tables in any way he can on the show that is making his life a living hell.


STAGE 46 's Interests

General:
You've heard the rumors. You've watched the show. Nows your chance to find out if the rumors are actually true.

Television:
Reality Shows and what actually goes on behind the scenes.

Stage 46: The Reality of Reality Television Heroes. People who aren't afraid to tell the real story.


~~~

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Earth to Media: Can we get some Content?

I signed up for the Daily Newsletters from



and




These e-mails are delivered to my inbox each day. I skim them looking for updates on the celebrities that interest me. I'm a fan of pop culture, just like millions of other people, but am I the only one who is dismayed by the trend toward wasting space on the vapid and mundane crap that is filling these pages more and more often?

Check out a few "news" items in yesterday's People Daily.

Britney was caught driving without a license. Oh the drama!

Nick Bollea got out of jail. Why do we give this scum the time of day?

Beyonce gained a few pounds. Yawn.

and we are asked to guess who this is.



US Magazine was even worse:

We learn that Tina Fey glues down her ears.

We are asked to vote on a poll about Madonna's marriage. Why?



Whitney Port (whoever that is) makes out with some guys

and a slideshow of Kim Kardashian's ass.



Granted, it was nice to see that Ashton Kutcher coaches a kid's football team, Gwyneth Paltrow is still around and classy as always, and Mariah Carey took her boy to a charity thing for an art gallery (and to be SEEN!!!!), but come on!

Can we get some content? Something we should care about?

Did either mag mention that Clay Aiken took the weekend off from Spamalot to raise nearly half a million dollars for children with disabilities on Saturday night? Do they know that a substantial number of fans were there with their checkbooks out and giving generously?

Did they know that the Bubel/Aiken Foundation honored CVS Caremark Charitable Trust as this year's Corporate Champions of Change for their outstanding efforts to improve the lives of children with disabilities?

Did they know that Dan Habib (an award-winning photojournalist, director and producer of documentary films) and Betsy McNamara (a fundraising consultant and an inclusion advocate who is the mother of Samuel) were awarded the Champions of Change Award for their work and for their documentary movie "Including Samuel"?

Did they know that Rich Donovan was recognized as a Champion of Change for applying his world-class business acumen to creating means of empowerment for people with disabilities. He was a key to Merrill Lynch’s diversity strategy. As CEO of Integrated Process Solutions, Rich provides large corporations and governments with ready-for-action profit opportunities as a “return on disability”.

Now I know that Clay Aiken isn't the only celebrity that has done something newsworthy this week, but I use him as an example of things that are noteworthy yet not reported.

How about these magazines putting up a poll and asking their readers whether they would rather read about things of substance that celebrities do, and that go unrecognized, or would they rather look at pictures of some woman's ass.

I'm scared to see the outcome of such a poll because I'm afraid that society has been dumbed down to the point where many would vote for the slideshow.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

In Response to Jim Smyrl's "Point of View"



Apparently someone failed to warn you that your "point of view" will remain in the Google cache forever. Your own words can never be taken back and that should upset you because as a pastor, you have failed your flock.

As the executive pastor of education at First Baptist Church of Jacksonville, FL, you have done a disservice to those that you purportedly educate.

Your mission I assume, is to teach the word of God but I hope that I don't need to remind you that bearing false witness is a sin and when you twist people's words to suit yourself, you are doing just that. Need I remind you that all sins are equal in God's eyes?

In People Magazine this month Clay Aiken said about his son:

"I have no idea if he'll be gay or straight. It's not something I'll have anything to do with, or that he'll have anything to do with. It's already probably up inside the code there ... No matter what the situation you're in, if you're raised in a loving environment, that's the most important thing."


You falsely interpreted Clay's words like this:

"Sadly, the context of his statements is in reference to the apparent hope that his son will walk in his father’s homosexual footsteps, and, if he does, he should be man enough to let people know he is gay."


Apparently you can't be trusted to interpret plain language never mind the Bible. What Clay said was that he doesn't know his son's future and that he will raise his son in a loving environment because that is the most important thing. All parents should be as caring and accepting as that.

To add insult to injury , you presume that Clay will lie to his son about some obscure study from the Netherlands. Ironically, you make that unfounded accusation right after you lied about what Clay said.

You go on to reference Pitirim Sorokin’s study that analyzed cultures over thousands of years and concluded that cultures allowing gay unions almost without exception ceased to survive as a society.

Ironically, you don't mention that some churches have been plagued with charges of child molestation. Now there's a topic you should rant about. Is it any wonder that churches are struggling to survive?

You said:

"Before we raise ourselves above our own level of purity, let’s look at verse 32. There we see that our silence in regards to homosexuality is synonymously as depraved as the sin itself. When opportunities arise for Christians to voice their views regarding moral issues and we remain silent, we approve by apathy the sinful course of society."




Therefore Jim, I am morally obligated to use my voice and condemn you for encouraging hate toward your brother in Christ. You took God's place and judged your fellow man and compounded that sin by bearing false witness. Turn your righteous indignation on yourself where it belongs.

Shame on you for your intolerant and un-Christian character. God said "Judge not lest ye be judged" You can't hide behind religion... hate is a sin. God is disappointed in you and Google never forgets.

Coming out day? By Jim Smyrl

~~~

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Clay Aiken talks about Fatherhood and Family

Clay Aiken on Good Morning America talks about his son, his new family and how they make it work.






Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Clay Aiken and Hannah Waddingham

Hannah and Clay performed THE PRAYER on April 29 2008.

They presented their Spamalot inspired Easter Bonnet and a donation of $265,000.00 for Broadway Cares-Equity Fights Aids


apologies for a tiny bit of a synch issue between the sound and video.

video

The DVD of all of the performances and presentations by the participating shows is for sale at Broadway Beat


~~~

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Clay Blogged!



Killing the elephants in the room.

10/03/08

What a week or so this has been. In fact, it's just been two weeks since I started back to the Spam. Jerome and I were just talking the other day, though, about how the past two weeks have felt like a month. So much routine to get back into and yet so much routine and consistency to break. No doubt, many of you have been going through quite a bit over the past week or so yourselves. What a bunch of headline news we have had in the past 10 days! Wall Street falling to it's knees. Congress propping it back up. Two debates. Hijackers in Somalia. New leaders in South Africa and Japan. You'd think with all of the important events going on in the world, there would be plenty to fill up the pages of America's newspapers, websites and blogs without the need for information on the private lives of the country's singers and entertainers. But, alas, thats never the case. In fact for the last five years, I've found what seems to have been an inordinate amount of interest (not from the public, but from the media) in my own personal life. The questions never seemed to stop. Oh sure, they die down for a period, but they resurface. The wind blows another direction, and I do yet another interview worried that my personal life will become a topic of discussion. No doubt the birth of Parker would bring the same scrutiny, just heightened. It's an interesting time we live in. Gone are the days when entertainers could go about their lives without the invasion of privacy that we now see everyday in the form of paparazzi and internet tabloid bloggers. So, in the hopes of being able to sing and act (and dance poorly) and do what I love to do for a living while raising my son in a hopefully more private and accepting environment, I chose to go ahead and confront things head on. Yes, I would have preferred to separate my personal life from my professional life. I would have been just as happy to go on without discussing my orientation. But, it seems like that was not an option. Make no mistake, its not because I am ashamed. No, not for a minute. I haven't always been as comfortable as I am now, but I am without a doubt, proud of who I am and make no apologies for it. Instead, I would have been happy to have kept my personal life private for that very reason. Because it's personal life and I have always considered myself a private person. But, living as myself without discussing my sexuality publicly would have been impossible. One chance to expose the truth would have been a payday for any greedy opportunist.

I went to American Idol, much like many of us did "back in the day". Naive. Unlike the contestants who join up today, we had no idea of the power and pull of Idol when we signed on. (I'm sure many of us season two folks like to think we are the reason the show got so big!!! ;-) ) There I was two months off of the biggest show in the country, sitting at a table with a reporter from Rolling Stone who was asking me every single question I would never think of. Twenty-four years old in the rest of America is a LOT younger and more naive than twenty four years old in the media business. So when this guy started asking me about things that I didn't really know how to answer for myself... things that I was not yet ready to admit to folks like my mother and my family.... things that I found intimidating and invasive, I responded in what I assumed was a benign way at the time. I attempted to "out spin" a professional. I wasn't as good as I thought I was. But, I have no regrets. The truth is, I don't apologize for the responses I gave to that reporter or any reporter over the past five years. I did make every attempt I could after that one interview to never say "I am not gay" or "I am straight". And I never said either. (some interpreted my vague answers to mean that... but I never said either) Some will say thats misleading. In truth, it might be defined that way. But, a better definition and a more accurate way to describe it for me, is a redirection and an attempt to change the topic to something that matters more. For some of you it won't be enough, but I can't apologize for keeping my personal business to myself. If someone feels that they were mislead, I can totally understand that viewpoint and apologize for that feeling, but I can't apologize for how I handled questions that affected me and my right to privacy.

In my opinion, sexual orientation is ALWAYS a private thing. I think the OVERWHELMING majority of people agree with that. Why in the world should someone's sexual orientation be a news item? Why should anyone care? Yet, for all we espouse as a society about tolerance and open mindedness we forget to allow folks the opportunity to be who they are without judgment. Making a decision to come out to family is a difficult and heavy decision. But, for every young man or woman who is struggling with it, it should be a decision that is made on his or her own schedule ONLY. It's never acceptable for anyone to make such a decision for anyone else nor to coerce someone to take such a significant step before they are ready. Not a friend, not a stranger, not the media. So, I waited until the time was right for me. For that I can't apologize either.

There are plenty of you who have anticipated this blog in hopes that I would "set the record straight" or "admit to lying for five years and apologize for it". For that small group of people, I am afraid I will have to disappoint you. My decisions over the past five years have been made with lots of deliberation and at times even heartache. Always with concern for folks who might feel mislead. Don't doubt that. But they have also been made as an attempt, not to hide my true self, but instead to allow myself the same liberties and rights that every single gay man and woman in the world should have... the right to determine for myself when I was ready to discuss my personal life. In as much as that, at times, was interpreted as misrepresentation, I feel badly. But I reserved that right for myself and I can't say I regret it.

I have endeavored over the past several days to allow folks to vent and express themselves as freely as possible without restriction on these message boards. There is no way to change a person's mind when you tell them they are wrong. We all, when backed into a corner, have a human instinct to swing. Having different feelings and opinions and viewpoints are only natural. The only way to deal with that is to accept everyone's right to disagree, and allow them to discuss their feelings. I always have, and I always will. That said, it hasn't been, nor do I imagine it will be, my intent to make the message boards or the OFC a clearinghouse or discussion zone for sexuality or such topics. I hope we can always continue to discuss the same things we have always found important. The need for inclusion for children with disabilities. The desire to make sure every child in the world has access to their basic needs for survival. And any other topics that will make our neighborhoods, our regions, our country and our world a better more acceptable place (where that relates to issues involving sexuality, I hope we are able to advocate, at those times for the acceptance of others)... and I hope we will all still use the message boards for the lively discussion of the need for better entertainment and music in the world!!!! ;-) That said, as of this posting, I have asked the moderators to archive the thread regarding the People magazine article and close it from discussion. For those of you who are still struggling, I encourage you to continue to talk to your friends and neighbors and fellow OFC members in the thread devoted to such support. It is not going to be as easy as accepting something over night, but I believe that we are on the right track. The moderators will resume their regular duties of moderating the boards in the fashion that they did prior to last week, and I (and hopefully all of us) will resume our routines in the same fashion as well. Talking about music, talking about potential tours and other performances and appearances, talking about me forgetting my lines or tripping on stage in Spamalot, and discussing with our friends how many times we have seen the show and will see it! (And... looking forward to the announcement of our Playbill contest winner!!!)

Finally, I will say that, also representative of most every other gay man and woman in the world, that I am not defined by my sexuality. No more so than each of you are defined by your sexual orientation. No more than a man or woman is defined by race or ethnicity. It is, simply, a small facet of the same person I have always been. Most of you realize that nothing has changed. I hope to continue being able to entertain you in the same way I have for the past five years. And I hope you will allow me to continue to inform you of the causes that I find important and entertain you with the music and performances I love. For I love and cherish you all. Yesterday, now and forever.

c


Always the teacher, I could not admire him more.

~~~

Friday, September 26, 2008

A little about me

When I was 18 I fell in love with a beautiful man. He had just finished his stint at the Royal Military Academy, a very prestigious military college for future officers, somewhat the equivalent of West Point.

He was a very handsome and intelligent man in perfect physical condition and as male as they come. We were besotted with each other, were married a year later and soon we had our son. As a civilian he was an actor in TV, stage and movies. About a year after our son was born, we had a wrap party at our home with the cast and crew of the movie. One of the actresses at the party approached me that night and told me that she really liked me and felt bad for me. She asked me if I knew that when my husband was going for dinner with the guys after rehearsal or the days shoot, that he was not just going for dinner with his friends but that it was candlelight, wine and roses.

I was completely floored. I had no idea, never sensed a thing to be not right in our marriage. We were not only husband and wife but we were the best of friends. We had sex and everything seemed as normal as a marriage could be. Of course at 21 I completely over-reacted and immediately felt betrayed and made a fool of. I left him, taking our son with me. I retreated to my parents home and found myself in the middle of a battle between the in-laws. His parents felt that I was too young to raise a child alone and should put my year old son up for adoption. My parents felt it was wrong to let a boy grow up knowing that his father was *gasp* gay. They all agreed that if I loved my son that I would give him to a *normal* family to grow up away from this horror show that they felt was his future.

I eventually caved in for the sake of giving my son a shot at a life with 2 parents and all of the advantages. Oh, what I did for love. Oh how I regret it. I lost not only my dearest friend but my son because of my not yet formed character.

Looking back, years later, I see a tragedy. If I had not come from such a closed minded society I may still be with that lovely man. I had nothing against him except my naive belief that romance is a requirement of love and that children must have the traditional family to have a happy life.

Years later I did seek out the son that I had allowed to be taken from me. He was raised with 2 parents but the love wasn't there. The father let his wife adopt a baby to make her happy. To him it was like getting her a pet. He had zero interest in my son. He was divorced with children from his first marriage. He was a total bastard. Oh my God, how that broke my heart to learn that I had made the most monumental mistake.

Anyway. The thing I want to convey is that we all do the best we can with what we are given. The inability for all involved in this mess to be loving, empathetic, tolerant, accepting, forgiving and supportive is what was wrong. The problem wasn't that my husband was gay. The problem was that he was rejected for it by everyone including me out of ignorance and an inability to accept and forgive.

Sadly, as I got older and had more experience in life I learned a lot about people. I had friends who were gay and learned that they were just people like everyone else that have hopes and dreams for a full life. The difference is that we, the straights, are not persecuted for being straight. We have all of the advantages of being the ones with "stars on thars".

I have believed that a person has the right to self-identify. I have been extremely defensive of Clay because the ones that have mocked and ridiculed him for years were wrong to do so. I will never change my mind about the assholes, including the OCers and the haters who have made fun of Clay, used him for their slash and porn fantasies and helped to fuel the militant gay factions with salacious gossip. Whether Clay was gay or not, they will never be right for how they mocked him. There is no forgiveness in me for that. Clay may be gay but he isn't that caricature of a mentally ill, sex addicted, trolling man whore that they portrayed.

Clay is a decent man. A loving father. A dear friend, A passionate humanitarian. A supremely talented singer, actor, songwriter and author. He is a loving son and a responsible citizen that loves his God and votes his conscience. Oh, and he happens to be gay.

As for my ex-husband? He committed suicide.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

He is Adorable!



Set your Tivos for Good Morning America on Thursday, Sept 25th. The promo clip said:

After all the rumors, all the tabloids, he's ready to speak. Its personal, emotional and a gift he wants to give his son.


I'm looking forward to hearing him tell his story.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Clay Aiken fits Sir Robin and Spamalot like a glove

Claymates and Clay Aiken Conquer Spamalot
By Edith Haight, Broadway Magazine





There was an invasion on Broadway this weekend, as American Idol star Clay Aiken returned to Spamalot to reprise his role as Sir Robin. Aiken first played the role last Spring, and then left for the summer. His return to the show was greeted with an outpouring of enthusiasm and accolades from fans. The most passionate Aiken fans are known as Claymates and they rival the theatre gangs of long ago.

The celebrated British actor Edmund Kean had "the Wolf Club." Kean's wolves were fans who would drink with him, and hound out theatrical rival actors with the violent tactics more commonly associated with criminal street gangs. The loyal fans of American actor Edwin Forrest and British actor William Macready fought to the literal death spurred on by their loyalty to their respective actor. The Astor Place riots were a real theatrical tragedy caused by passionate fans. Well, Clay Aiken can rest soundly at night knowing that he has his own passionate gang of theatre and Broadway fans known as Claymates, and they are ready to do battle for Clay if need be. From the moment the news of his reprise on Broadway broke, the Claymates have been out in full force supporting their Idol. Katie Holmes doesn't have fans like these. Few people do.

No worries about violence, the Claymates seem more about celebration than intimidation. Those fretting a Shubert Alley Riot with Claymates battling Ace Young Fans or Daniel Radcliffe enthusiasts will be disappointed. Looking over the sea of exuberant comments posted on Broadway.tv, Clay Aiken's return should give all Broadway fans a reason to smile.


Spamalot is a musical-comedy that embraces the absurd and delights in the unusual. As a recording artist, Aiken clearly has the vocal capacity to interpret any number of musical roles (one fan suggested "Pippin"). That said, that Aiken has chosen to come to Broadway and return to Broadway in this comedy says a great deal for his willingness not to take himself too seriously. His fans' enthusiasm and joy in his performance suggest that Broadway should enjoy taking Clay Aiken very seriously indeed. Like Fantasia igniting The Color Purple, or Reba transforming Annie Get Your Gun!, Clay fits Sir Robin and Spamalot like a glove.

Broadway Magazine

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Live Feed from Shubert Alley

Broadway Flea Market and Grand Auction to benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.


BroadwayWorldTV- Broadcast your self LIVE


Watching for Clay Aiken to make an appearance between shows.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Clay Aiken is a Natural on Broadway



Crowd Crowns King Clay

While he may be playing a “Sir” on Broadway in Spamalot, it is safe to say that he was King Clay Aiken at last night’s opening. Of course, Spamalot has an excellent new king in Michael Siberry, and an awesome Lady in that lake with Merle Dandridge too.

The new additions to the cast of Spamalot all seemed to walk on air, and this up close look at the celebratory curtain call can’t help but put a smile on your face.

American Idol star Clay Aiken is a natural on Broadway. This is the excitement that happens on those rare occasions on Broadway.

At the moment, forget Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe in Equus, and Katie Holmes, Tom Cruise and their entourage of Scientology protesters at All My Sons, or even forget Entourage’s Jeremy Piven in Speed-The-Plow, or Ace Young in Grease.

The big story on Broadway today is Clay! He is back on Broadway, and the fun has begun.

broadway.tv.com

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Clay It Again Spam



Spamalot producers are excited to welcome Clay Aiken back to Broadway. This ad appeared in the Sunday edition of the New York Times.

His "Triumphant Return" is to start on September 19th 2008 and promises to be another 4 months of supreme silliness. There will be much "soiling of pants" both on stage and off. Clay is packing up his family and moving on up to NYC for the duration. Everyone is hoping that Jaymes (she's a girl) Foster and Parker will make some public appearances because the fans are dying to get a look at little Parker and wish to congratulate the new parents on their bundle of joy.

The following video clip is kind of prophetic. Clay sang a few TV Theme songs as part of the fun on last year's summer tour.

So, Welcome Back to NYC Clay, and we hope that you and your family enjoy your stay "in that dee-luxe apartment in the sky"

video

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Clay Aiken: Teams up


Clay Aiken: Teams up With UNICEF and Malaria No More to defeat malaria, a completely preventable disease that still kills one child every 30 seconds worlwide. But as UNICEF Ambassador Clay Aiken puts it in this short video, "It doesn't have to be this way.". He urges everyone to "give the gift of growing up"




For a limited time, Malaria No More will match your donation in the fight against malaria, helping UNICEF save twice as many lives. To learn more, click here. Or, "give the gift of growing up" and make an online donation today.


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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Celebrity Stalkers




Why Stalkers Often Cannot Accept Reality

Dawnette Knight believed she was in love with Michael Douglas when she allegedly threatened to slice up his Oscar-winning wife, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and feed her to her dogs.

Neither Douglas nor Zeta-Jones had ever met Knight. She had become infatuated with Douglas after seeing him in movies such as Fatal Attraction. After reading about an alleged affair by Zeta-Jones in a supermarket tabloid, Knight sent the actress more than two dozen threatening letters and allegedly made repeated phone calls to her agents and hotels where the couple would stay.


Experts say Knight's willingness to avenge Douglas for a supposed affair by Zeta-Jones illustrates the world celebrity stalkers often create when they believe they have a real relationship with the rich and famous.

"Celebrity stalkers tend to be psychotic," said Jack Levin, professor of criminology and director of the Brudnick Center on Conflict and Violence at Northeastern University in Boston. "They often possess rich fantasy lives in which they feel personally involved [with the celebrity]. Many of the celebrity stalkers actually imagine they are having an intimate relationship with their victims."


A Reality of Their Own

Often celebrities have never had any contact with the stalkers who pursue them. Their stalkers may know them only as the character they play on stage or screen.

Experts say celebrity stalkers tend to suffer mental illness and are so disenchanted with reality, or unable to cope with reality, that they create their own. And their favorite celebrity is the center of their imagined universe.


"We don't really know an awful lot about what causes people to stalk," said Yvonne Downes, professor of criminal justice at Hilbert College in Hamburg, N.Y. "People who stalk celebrities tend to be so dissatisfied with their life — or are just so unable to cope with reality — that they create their own reality. The universe they tend to live in is an interesting one."


Besides hiring bodyguards and getting restraining orders, there is little that celebrities can do to protect themselves from stalkers. Ignoring stalkers or getting restraining orders will often just anger them.


Though men are rarely stalking victims, some people believe these cases could be under-reported and more prevalent than believed.


"Many of these stalkers often suffered a great deal as children and because of that suffering they grow up feeling a profound sense of powerlessness, So later, in their relationships with adults, they do everything they can to maximize a sense of power. They can't take no for an answer, and treat everyone as instruments, possessions and weapons."



Knight faces one stalking charge and 24 felony counts of making criminal threats for acting on an imagined relationship with Douglas. If convicted, she could face a very real sentence of up to 19 years in prison.


On March 2, 2007, Clay Aiken's stalker confessed that his story was a hoax and that the alleged encounter was a lie, but he couldn't let go of his obsession and has since relapsed. He flip flops like a flounder. One day he admits it was a lie, the next he insists that he was lying about lying but that this time he isn't lying. Honest!

You can read screen captures of his confession in the sidebar.

He is relentlessly obsessed. He continues to pursue Clay in an effort to get his attention. He continues to harass him with a daily litany of fabricated hook up stories with hundreds of men on a blog drenched in hate speech, mockery and abuse.

He has moved to within a few miles of Clay's home. He jogs and drives by Clay's house and manufactures ways to try to encounter Clay by frequenting his favorite restaurants, shopping at the same stores and even driving around Clay's mother's neighborhood in order to get a glimpse of Clay or a member of his family. He has sent Clay's mother flowers on her birthday, which must have creeped her out. He will do anything to try to have some kind of contact with something or someone close to Clay. He attended several concerts where he got as close to the stage as he could get, hoping that Clay would notice him.

He even owns several accounts on gay social networking sites where he has set up profiles that impersonate Clay in an effort to ruin his reputation and to destroy his career. He impersonates Clay on instant messages and e-mails. He sends pictures of Clay to convince people that it is really Clay they are communicating with and arranges for hookups with unsuspecting men, but then of course he doesn't show up. There are quite a few very angry gay men out there that are convinced that they had a close encounter with Clay. Sorry guys. It was just his stalker.

He thinks that if Clay were no longer a celebrity that he might have a chance to get near him. This is one very frustrated stalker. He even sold his fake encounter to the tabloids to get attention. He was hoping to go to court in a lawsuit so that he could force a situation where he could get near Clay and finally meet him.

David Letterman was stalked for years by Margaret Mary Ray. She was convinced that she was Mr.Letterman's wife and that he was sending her coded love messages through the TV screen. She killed herself in 1998

We can only hope that Clay Aiken's stalker will do the same.

This just in!

Stalker has moved on to Barak Obama. He assures his readers that Mr. Obama is a closeted homosexual, because stalker is, of course, the central clearing house and encyclopedia for all things gay [/sarcasm].

Watch your back Mr Obama, he's on your case now.


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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Clay Aiken Fans: Remember the Vanilla Revolution?



It was about accepting Clay as he is. Remember the mantra, "Let Clay be Clay" ?

Vanilla represented the majority of the population's preference. It is not the choice of people who need to be seen as cool, the ones that jump on every new thing as if it were the best because it is new. New isn't better, new doesn't last and new isn't new for long. Clay is an old soul and his fans like him that way.

There is nothing wrong with music that stands the test of time. Some people want Clay to be a wallet chain and guyliner wearing rock poser or to be sexed up like the majority of Top40 radio stars. He has expressed repeatedly that it is not what he aims for. He makes the music he likes and most of his fans are loving what he chooses to do.

Clay Aiken is his own man, he will do what he feels is right for him and his family. If he doesn't please you then you have a choice. Accept him as he is or bugger off and find someone more to your liking.

Some of the message boards are bogged down with people who want to go on and on, whining and complaining that Clay isn't the virginal choir boy they thought he was. Complaining that he isn't making the career choices that they want him to make. Complaining that his choice of family would not have been their choice for him and complaining that his faith does not match their idea of what they thought was his faith.

Bugger off! Tell someone who cares!

The worst part is that the boards are becoming like old dogs that can't learn new tricks. The fans have learned a lot in 5 years. Most of all we have learned what we don't want. A fan recently expressed it like this:

This is exactly the reason that some of the newer boards were launched and are thriving. The CH is a mess, the CV is too regimented, the CB seems to be changing daily and I know of several people myself who have jumped ship there. It would take only minutes to check out those blog links and I think anyone with half a brain can see that the reason given [for deleting them] is a bunch of bull.

The fandom have been through way too much and know too much to want to be managed and manipulated anymore. They know they've been lied to by the mods and they know they have had things kept from them. And now, they can see that efforts to promote Clay are being censored [and blocked]. For what good reason? It's all politics and it has no place in our day to day desire to celebrate Clay Aiken. The fans are starting to take back the fandom from those that would have us do it their way.

Go to any of the above mentioned boards and you'll find a great deal of angst and infighting. Also a great deal of censorship on what you can and cannot talk about. Go to some of the newer boards and you'll find fans wanting to find their joy again, to celebrate their fandom and do something to promote Clay. Yes, the crap is talked about but it's not dampening spirits or putting fans into a tail spin of doom and gloom as some would have you believe. The times are a-changing and fans are finding a better fit for themselves and are making a decision on how THEY want to manage their fandom by supporting these new boards. I expect the trend to seek out "greener pastures" will continue and those larger boards will languish due to neglect and mismanagement of their greatest resource - the fans. It shouldn't be considered a privilege to belong to any one board, it should be a privilege to have fans want to call your board home. That's when you know you're doing something right. This fandom is changing and you better change with it or get left behind!


She's dead right in her assessment and the mods need to pay attention to the wants and needs of their members. I don't want to see any of the big boards fail but that is what will happen if things don't change and soon. A small handful of overly critical malcontents can bring down a board. They drive away fans that want a supportive environment. They want to be among their own kind so they can have fun and express their joy without reading the often cruel and bullying rants of the few who are not fans of Clay Aiken, but are fans of who they thought he should be, and sadly, fans of their own ego. These cancerous tumors need to be cut out so that the fandom can live on in a healthy and wholesome environment. Board membership is not a right, it is an invitation extended by the board owner. A board is only as good as its leaders and some of them have leaders who are corrupted by power without the benefit of wisdom. I suspect that some of them aren't even fans, which explains why they no longer work to support Clay and why they don't care what happens as long as they can continue to be social, but Clay doesn't matter any more.

One of the worst offenders is the Official fanclub. The operators of that board chose the mods from the worst fan board [The RCA Board] and put them in charge. What a huge mistake that was. It is not a place that I would recommend for new fans. Those mods can't even follow the board's Terms of Use.

The Clay Nation is in a state of revolution. It isn't about Vanilla this time. Its about providing a place for fans to be fans.

What is a fan? A fan is an enthusiastic supporter. If enthusiastic and supportive fans are no longer the population of a board, it is no longer a fansite and the fans need to seek out a new home.

People need to take a good hard look and decide if they are getting what they need from their home board (and what they paid for in the case of the OFC) and decide if they are in the right place. They have a choice to either fight for change or move on to a more joyous and supportive board that fills their needs.

The protection and pandering to chronic and abusive trolling non-fans has driven more people from the boards than anything Clay has done.


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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Chexxxy for President!

Hahaha! this is too funny. Thanks to the person that sent it to me.





Korean Olympic coverage featured songs by Clay Aiken




Three of Clay Aiken's songs were used in the coverage of various events including medal awards ceremonies, before and after various events and for pre Olympic broadcast promotion.

A fan in Korea reports:

Now that the Olympics are over, one of the best things that happened during the Olympics was that we had many opportunities to hear Clay's songs on TV.


video


Promo for Olympics broadcast before the Olympics("On My Way Here")

After Park Tae-hwan won gold medal at 400m free swimming("On My Way Here")

Promo for Park's 200m free swimming("On My Way Here")

After Park won silver medal at 200m free swimming("On My Way Here")

Promo for rhythmic gymnast Shin Soo-ji's game("Where I Draw The Line')

Promo for female handball team's bronze medal match("On My Way Here")

Promo for marathoner Lee Bong-joo("This Is The Night")

During the evening news("On My Way Here")


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Sunday, August 24, 2008

A Glimpse of Clay Aiken's Son.



That is all we ask. The anticipation is building for a glimpse. Just one picture. Just one. Yes, I know it won't be enough, but its a good start :)

Will there be a photo spread in People magazine? Will the first look be the work of papparazzi? Will Jaymes and Clay allow a picture to be posted at Clay's Fan Club?

Will Jaymes give an interview to Redbook or Woman's Day?

Will they do as other celebrities have done to keep the papparazzi at bay? I mean allowing one news outlet to have exclusive pictures is a very smart way to handle it. It takes away the incentive for photographers to compete with each other for the first photos and Clay and Jaymes can give the money to charity as other stars have done. A win win situation if you ask me!

Parker is only 2 weeks old, so maybe they are going to wait a bit, but I expect there are negotiations going on and I look forward to the first pictures of the little family soon.

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Saturday, August 23, 2008

Clay Aiken: The Real Deal


click on image to enlarge


This is the current banner at Chexxxy's Place. The quotes are Clay Aiken's actual sentiments about his purpose and his direction in life. Some of these words were spoken 5 years ago and he has never waivered from his purpose. He not only talks the talk but he walks the walk. This is the real Clay and he doesn't even remotely resemble the twisted and cartoonish image the gossips attempt to project on him.

One of the members on our message board expressed her feelings about Clay.


joanie said:

It amazes me that the people who think they know Clay and what's best for him haven't a clue to the real Clay Aiken. None of us know what he does in his personal life, and we have no business trying to find out. What we do know is the public Clay Aiken. What the man stands for, what he does to help others in need, and the beautiful voice he shares with us.

In five years we've discovered what a talented, witty, kind, generous and loving man he really is. He's shown us some talents we weren't aware of initially. We know he can dance, though he tells us he can't. We know he can act; the theatre tickets sold for Spamalot proved that. We know he has the respect of Broadway, from the people who worked with him on stage and in the theatre, from the ushers to the box office people.

He's received accolades from people behind the scenes as well as the audiences. He performed under what most would call horrendous conditions. When he was so sick he couldn't even stand up to sing, and with someone [ a stalker] sitting in the audience who's tried to ruin his reputation and his career.

He's walked miles and miles of bus lines, and signed autographs in freezing cold weather. He's had many M&G's where he sits down and talks with his fans, and had to face fans that also are trying to bring him down for whatever reason.

Then he did something he said he's wanted to do for several years. He fathered a child. He wanted it so badly that he did it, knowing what the media, and some fans, would think. Even at the expense of disappointing or even losing some of his fans, Clay did what made him happy.

Clay Aiken is one of the strongest, bravest people out there today.




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Friday, August 22, 2008

Clay Aiken - Where I Draw The Line

Clay Aiken's song continues its run on AOL Top 11 videos. It has a bit of a country feel to it. It isn't surprising that Clay can sing in that style because he grew up on country music and he used to front a country band (Just By Chance) before he appeared on American Idol.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Jaymes is a Girl


As most of the world knows by now, on August 8, 2008, Clay Aiken blogged to announce the birth of his son on his fan club website:


Hello All...

I know it's been a while. I'm sure you know, it's been a full full summer. Sorry we haven't spoken in so long. But, I'm sure you know... I hate putting the cart before the horse. Not my way to tempt fate. But I wanted to stop by, if only for a second, so you could be the first folks I tell....

HE'S HERE!

My dear friend, Jaymes, and I are so excited to announce the birth of Parker Foster Aiken (No hyphens. One first name. One middle name. One last name.)

Parker was born at a hospital in North Carolina just this morning at 8:08 AM. Wow... 8:08 ..08/08/08

Weighed in at 6 lbs 2 oz and measured 19 inches

The little man is healthy, happy, and as loud as his daddy.Mama Jaymes is doing quite well also. The Aiken family, the Foster family, and the Parker family are all thrilled. We'll share more at some point in the future.

Love to you all!



Along with being Clay’s “dear friend” and the mother of his son, Jaymes served as the Executive Producer of Clay’s “A Thousand Different Ways” CD released in 2006, his Christmas EP “All is Well” released for the 2006 Christmas season, and his latest CD “On My Way Here” released in May 2008. It is believed that she has been his “dear friend” for a number of years. In his liner notes for “A Thousand Different Ways,” Clay dedicated these words to Jaymes:


How we ended up on the same page in each other's lives at the same time, I may never understand. What I do know is that I am thankful daily that God saw fit to introduce me to someone as talented, wise and genuine as you. That you believed in me enough to take on this project with me, and stuck with it through so much, has been one of the biggest blessings I've been given...but not as big as the blessing of having you as a trusted and indispensable friend.





David Foster, Jaymes Foster and Clay Aiken rehearsing for Clay's October 2007 performance at the Neil Sedaka Tribute and Gala at the Lincoln Center in NYC.



Clay and Jaymes at the David Foster Gala in Vancouver, 2006



Clay and Jaymes at Clay's Christmas Concert in Charlotte, NC, December 2006.



Clay and Jaymes leaving the David Foster Gala

Clay, Jaymes and Parker will be moving to New York City in September while Clay reprises his role as Sir Robin in Spamalot on Broadway. They will be there until January 4, 2009.~~BaldFaceTruth


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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Clay Aiken Headed Back to Broadway in Spamalot




Clay Aiken will return to the scene of his triumphant Broadway debut in the Tony Award-winning Best Musical, Monty Python's SPAMALOT this Fall. Clay's debut on Broadway earlier this year was met with wild enthusiasm from both his legion of fans and the New York press. He will reprise the role of 'Sir Robin ' at the Shubert Theatre from September 19 2008 - January 4 2009.

When he made his Broadway debut in SPAMALOT at the beginning of this year, Newsday said "Aiken is a charmer" and the Associated Press said that "Clay Aiken deftly handles supremely silly."

Clay Aiken became a music superstar following his success on the "American Idol" television series, and has sold more than six million albums; co-authored a best-selling book; and, played six sold-out concert tours.
---Broadway World

Aiken will reprise the role of Sir Robin, which he played earlier this year in an engagement that ran Jan 18th to May 4.

His previous run in "Spamalot" had a noticeable effect on box office. Weekly sales for the tuner surged the week Aiken joined the cast and took a steep tumble the frame after he departed.

---Variety

Clay Aiken will return to the Broadway company of Spamalot this fall as Sir Robin, a role he played for three and a half months earlier this year.

"Since leaving Spamalot in May, jokes have just not been funny," Aiken said in a statement. "Food has lost its taste. The grass is no longer green—the sky no longer blue. And babies WON'T stop crying!! I'm so excited about coming back to the funniest show in the world!" The "babies" reference presumably refers to Aiken's newest real-life role, as father to newborn son Parker Foster Aiken, born on August 8.

---broadway.com

Aiken released his fourth album, On My Way Here, on May 6th, just after leaving Spamalot. The CD debuted at #4, continuing Aiken's streak of all four of his albums having debuted in the Top 4.


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