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Rodney HoRodney Ho

‘American Idol’ bits: Dexter Roberts disappearance from tour, Taylor Hicks, Clay Aiken

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Dexter Roberts is off the "Idols Live" tour with no explanation. CREDIT: Fox

Dexter Roberts is off the “Idols Live” tour with no explanation. CREDIT: Fox

Where is Dexter Roberts?

He did four “Idol Live” tour shows, then disappeared, last seen July 1.

The Alabama singer, who finished seventh,  left under mysterious circumstances. This story wonders if perhaps he was sick but he’s been seen around Alabama not looking so sick.

I did just receive at least a confirmation that he’s out but it doesn’t explain what happened behind the scenes:

“Both parties mutually agreed that he would be released from his contractual obligations to continue performing on the tour,” a spokeswoman said in a statement.

I’m not clear if Dexter’s departure will really hurt the show in a grand way. He was hardly my favorite. I actually preferred Ben Briley, who finished 11th.

The show’s popularity – or lack thereof – has clearly impacted the tour itself, which is in smaller venues than in the past. There are 40 total cities, up from 30 last year, when a quarter of the dates were straight out cancelled. There is no live band for the first time  – just backing tracks. That’s a major minus.

On July 24, the show will come to the Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre for the first time after many years at Gwinnett Arena. In Atlanta’s case, Verizon could fit 12,000 people, including 7,000 seats. Gwinnett Arena could fit up to 13,000 but was fitted for far less last year.

How is attendance so far for shows? I’m not sure. I haven’t seen numbers. I bet it’s doing better than last year, which was apparently a major disaster but certainly not as well as 2012.  I wasn’t able to access the tickets here so I can’t tell how well tickets are selling locally. (There were plenty of great seats a month ago.) On Stubhub right now, you can currently buy two tickets below cost, believe it or not, and the markup for others are not very high at all.

Wikipedia has the entire set list from the early dates which included Roberts’ songs.

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The “American Idol” bus tour for season 14 auditions is hitting smaller cities, including  Tallahassee, Fla. on Sunday. It was in Richmond this past Tuesday, Elliot Yamin’s hometown.

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Taylor Hicks returns to metro Atlanta just a few weeks after his July 4th Centennial Olympic Park celebration appearance, this time at Westside Cultural Center, which he helped open last year. 

He will do a Habitat for Humanity charity concert there August 22 called Hicks for Habitat. You can buy tickets here. Unfortunately, I’m going to be out of town.

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Clay Aiken raised $450,000 during the second quarter for his long-shot campaign to unseat Rep. Renee Ellmers  in North Carolina.  Details here.

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Kelly Clarkson showed up on “Idol” in 2002 with some clothing design ideas before she began singing. She is funneling those ambitions to her baby with a line of onesies.

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Carrie Underwood’s promo for NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” theme song hits movie theaters Sunday.

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Adam Lambert is getting good reviews for his lead role on the Queen tour, which is unfortunately not coming to Atlanta.

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