5 Things We Learned at the Nashville ‘American Idol’ Auditions
Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick, Jr. stopped to chat with Taste of Country at the Nashville 'American Idol' audition stop on Monday (Aug. 4). The trio took turns gushing on the show and each other before answering serious questions about collaborations and the weirdos. OK, they almost got serious.
Here are five things we learned from the event, which aimed to find finalists for the start of Season 14 in January. The FOX show has produced country winners like Carrie Underwood and Scotty McCreery. Lopez said two finalists moved on during Sunday's audition rounds, and overall the talent was good, but not great. She also talked about the odds of her recording a song with country's favorite 'AI' judge. You know the one.
Keith Urban talked a bit about saving Music Row, but focused mostly on 'American Idol' during his time with Taste of Country. When asked how the show helps his music career, Urban said it reminds him how lucky he is.
"It doesn’t seem that long ago I was just playing covers and trying to sneak in an original song here and there and hope that they don’t leave," Urban -- dressed in a Studio B T-shirt -- reveals. "So to go from there to where I get to be today, and then I see kids coming in at the very beginning, just starting and hoping they can go make an album ... it’s great. It keeps it all in perspective.”
Harry Connick ,Jr. answered questions and posed for selfies with more than few blushing media members. When asked what he likes better, the good or the weird, the actor and singer says it's not even close.
“I look forward to the good,” he shares. "I’m not a big fan of when people come in and know they shouldn’t be here and act silly. I’m not a big fan … I like to see the real talent."
The three 'AI' judges have great chemistry and a genuine appreciation for each other, but singing together is a challenge. "It's so hard to mesh people from different worlds," Lopez says.
They performed during an episode last season, and it worked very well. In fact, Lopez called that song one of her favorite collaborations ever. As for recording with Urban or Connick, Jr.?
"Maybe," she says. "Only if it happens organically." Perhaps we just planted the seed.
'Idol' producers are out looking for talent. They hit the streets in Nashville to find people that could sing. Also new this year is an expanded bus tour to let people from small towns audition. The goal is to reach people who can't get to cities like Nashville, or people turned off by a 4,000-person waiting list to sing for Keith, Harry, Jennifer and company.
Contestants can also sing with a piano accompaniment. That's new for Season 14, which begins in January.
While talking with Taste of Country Nights host Sam Alex, the 'American Idol' host admitted he's as passionate about his full-time job as a radio deejay as he is about his television work.
"I love radio, stay in it," he offered as parting message to Alex. You'll have to find Taste of Country Nights on the radio to hear the full conversation. The two really chummed it up during their three minutes together. We feel a bromance coming on.