Video: The Freshmen by The Verve Pipe Cover

The Freshmen by The Verve Pipe Cover


Insider: ‘Idol’ star stands behind ejected Morristown teen

This is an article from KnoxNews by Terry Morrow.  Thanks to Ligaya for the heads up.

Simon Cowell doesn’t like the fact Josiah Leming failed to make the cut.

Don’t you dare look back as we turn to go

There’s nothing left here for us

But salty eyes and burning skies

That fall as they ignore us

– Josiah Leming, “Plaines Overhead”

Simon Cowell is still a little miffed that Morristown, Tenn., teen Josiah Leming didn’t go farther on this past season’s “American Idol.”

“We should have put him through,” Cowell said. “I was all for it. I wanted him in the competition.”

Leming made a splash on the hit Fox series earlier this year. He made the top 50, but was cut shortly before the top 24 was announced.

The judges were split on the decision. Randy Jackson was never a big supporter. Cowell wanted to see Leming in the top 24. Paula Abdul, as always, loved him, but eventually voted against Leming anyway.

“I don’t know what they were thinking,” Cowell told the Insider. “I wanted him through, and I wanted another kid, the kid with the glasses, through.”

And now that Leming is working on a debut CD, rumored to be for a major label?

“I think I was proven right,” Cowell said.

When Leming spoke on the record for the Insider, he announced he was working on his first major CD. Plans called for it to be released in September.

Leming has gone on the record saying he’s glad he didn’t get tied up in the finals of “Idol.” His career has gotten a nice enough boost from the “Idol” exposure he got in January.

He’s landed a Hollywood manager and has fielded offers from Fox and MTV.

When he auditioned for “Idol” this past fall, he was living out of his car. Since “Idol” aired, he has moved back to his parents’ home in Morristown.

n HOLD ON, MISSI (PYLE). Actresses Shawnee Smith and Missi Pyle, who were featured guests this past weekend at AdventureCon, had to tone down their act when appearing on “Live At Five” on WBIR, Channel 10, a week ago.

During a rehearsal for a song they wanted to perform on the show, producers were concerned when the suggestive lyrics talked about spanking – and not in a bad way.

The women, who are primarily actresses but have formed a country duo, agreed to sing something a little bit more family friendly.

On Saturday, at an official AdventureCon VIP event, county commissioner Greg “Lumpy” Lambert was among the cool kids at the Smith and Pyle show. However, he was not part of the faux mosh pit. Seriously.

Smith is a busy Hollywood talent with credits such as the “Saw” franchise. She played the dimwit Linda on the series “Becker” with Ted Danson.

Pyle’s extensive film credits include “Anchorman” and “Dodgeball.” Her TV credits include ABC’s “Boston Legal” and Fox’s “Wedding Bells,” both of which had her in long-term roles.

n SHY GUY. “Hannah Montana” co-star Mitchel Musso attended the late-night AdventureCon party, but he didn’t participate much with the crowd. The reserved 16-year-old opted to stand in a doorway and watch Smith and Pyle perform their originals. Musso accommodated fan requests for autographs and pictures, but he didn’t join in the faux mosh pit formed around the stage.

“He’s shy,” one of the con organizers explained. “He’s young and in a strange town. He wanted to stay in the background.”

n Words to live by. “I realized that Judaism required me to give up something that meant too much to me – bacon cheeseburgers.” – Shawnee Smith (as Linda) on “Becker”

Josiah Leming Calling American Idol A “Glorified Karaoke”

Credit goes to the Josiah Leming Forum. Thanks to Gossamer Rose and Rachel.

You can talk about the MTV article here and the People Magazine article here.

Here is the article in People Magazine where Josiah called American Idol a “glorified karaoke”. You can read the whole article here.

Josiah LemingAmerican Idol’s Josiah Leming, the free spirit who was living out of his car when he failed to make the Top 24, now has a record deal — and a few choice words for the show.

“The fact is, it’s glorified karaoke — they pick people with pretty faces and the pretty voices, and they don’t let them write their own songs,” Leming, 19, tells MTV News.

The producers, he says, “pick these good-looking people with voices, and they have them sing these songs that other people have written.”

“And therefore, it lacks passion, it lacks emotion and it lacks the things that set an artist off from being good to being great,” says Leming, who was booted during the Hollywood round of the show.

Still, Leming has no regrets. Thanks to the exposure on Idol, he has signed with Warner Bros. Records.

“As everyone clearly saw, I poured my heart and soul into the process and into the competition,” he says. “But looking back now, things could not have gone any better. Things happened perfect. I got the exposure. … People liked me, which was amazing, and I love my fans more than anything. I’m happy I didn’t make it. Looking back, it couldn’t have gone any better.”

Here’s another MTV article with a video. Read the whole article here.

“American Idol” reject Josiah Leming confirmed long-swirling rumors earlier this week that he had signed to Warner Bros. Records, home to artists like the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Tom Petty, and (not for much longer) Madonna. But even before recording the first earnest vocal, Josiah (not to mention the major label cutting his checks) is facing one of the double-edged realities of reality TV: millions of people, it turns out, have already decided that they either love him or hate him.

Reacting to comments Leming made to MTV News about “Idol” during an exclusive studio visit in Los Angeles last week –- “glorified karaoke,” he called it –- one reader accused the 19-year-old high school dropout of sounding “jealous and petty,” while another sneered “this kid effin’ sucks.” Others see Josiah, recipient of the most talked about early-round pink-slip in “Idol” history, a bit differently. “Amazing,” says an admirer, touting the Tennessee-born troubadour’s songwriting ability as “unmatched by any other contemporary artist…a legend in the making.”

The lightning rod attracting all this attention, both good and bad, tells MTV News that he’s already written all the songs for his upcoming debut album, and completed the arrangements. But when we asked him to take a seat at the piano and play for us, Josiah chose to preview a track so new it didn’t make the cut. It’s an intensely personal song inspired by his mother’s ongoing battle with terminal cancer.

So check out the clip above and tell us: what do you think of Josiah’s musical chops?

You can also see an earlier performance Josiah gave MTV News, after the jump.

This isn’t the first time Josiah’s performed for us. Back in February, just weeks after “Idol” showed “the kid in the car” the door, we tracked him down in his hometown of Morristown, Tennessee. Down in the basement of the house he grew up in with his parents and eight brothers and sisters, Josiah pounded out “One Last Song” on the battered upright piano that can be seen in the various MySpace clips he posted long before “Idol” made him a household name. Incorporating footage we shot during our visit, we turned the intimate performance into a music video of sorts…

Josiah Leming : New MTV Article With Video

You can read the full MTV article here.

‘American Idol’ Standout Josiah Leming Inks A Record Deal, Calls Show ‘Glorified Karaoke’

The early ‘Idol’ castoff says he wouldn’t be where he is today if he’d made the cut.

By James Montgomery, with reporting by Jim Cantiello

Josiah Leming When we last saw Josiah Leming, he was sleeping in his parents’ basement in Morristown, Tennessee, hammering out otherworldly tunes on a rickety old piano and licking his wounds from his recent “American Idol” ouster.

He was “the kid who slept in his car,” the homeless scamp who cried buckets on a televised singing competition, the scrappy underdog with the deck stacked against him. He was a directionless, idealistic dreamer, the kind of guy you really want to see succeed but at the same time were relatively certain he wouldn’t. All you could really do was hope for the best.

Fast-forward three months. My, how things have changed.

Today, Leming sits behind a massive console in a shiny Los Angeles studio, tickles the keys of a well-lacquered baby grand and is talking about his freshly inked deal with Warner Bros. Records. He’s still got the same mop of hair, the same amount of baby fat, and he’s still wearing the same baggy T-shirts. But something is different about him: He’s no longer an underdog. Rather, he’s transformed into an emboldened and immensely talented recording artist, someone standing on the verge of something very big. And he knows it.

“I signed my deal with Warner Bros. about a month and a half ago, and I’m glad to finally announce it. The songs are written, the arrangements are done, and right now it’s time to work with the producers,” he said. “I’m so excited. I’m just beaming inside right now. Since I signed the deal, it’s been a lot of wait, wait, wait. Now it’s finally come. I’m in this awesome studio, working on songs. … It’s amazing. This is everything I ever wanted.”

But herein lies the new quandary facing Leming: He’s clearly an indie-minded artist playing in the big, bad world of the majors. And more often than not, this scenario doesn’t exactly end well. So how does he plan on making sure that he ends up more like, say, Death Cab for Cutie than Jawbox?

Well, for starters, he’s not gonna lose the attitude that got him here in the first place — you know, the one that was on display when he dismissed the band during “Idol” auditions and decided to perform Ben E. King’s “Stand By Me” solo, and when he proclaimed he had “no regrets” immediately following that performance. And for further proof of this, well, let’s just ask him about “Idol,” shall we?

“It’s like glorified karaoke,” he said. “And yeah, I did it and it was great. I love those people there. They were great to me, and it gave me a great kick-start to my career. But the fact is, it’s glorified karaoke — they pick people with pretty faces and the pretty voices, and they don’t let them write their own songs. They pick these good-looking people with voices, and they have them sing these songs that other people have written. And therefore, it lacks passion, it lacks emotion and it lacks the things that set an artist off from being good to being great. So that’s my feeling on it.”

And while he’s glad to point out that he holds no ill will against anyone involved with “Idol,” he claims that he’s glad he didn’t make the cut. Because, really, he wouldn’t be where he is right now if he had.

“As everyone clearly saw, I poured my heart and soul into the process and into the competition. But looking back now, things could not have gone any better. Things happened perfect,” Leming said. “I got the exposure. … People liked me, which was amazing, and I love my fans more than anything. I’m happy I didn’t make it. Looking back, it couldn’t have gone any better. It’s like this tiny little door shut and voom, the door to the world opened.”

Leming said he plans to work on his Warner debut in Los Angeles and London, and he’s tapped post-punk heavyweight Nick Launay (Public Image Ltd., Gang of Four, Talking Heads) and electronic producer David Kosten (who records under the name Faultline) to helm the project. And while both might seem like odd choices for his bare-bones tunes, Leming said fans won’t be disappointed with the results. After all, he didn’t work his whole life to screw things up now.

“There’s something in me — call it ambition, call it arrogance, call it cockiness, it doesn’t bother me because it’s necessary to my music. I can’t be in that middle pile. I don’t want to be in that middle pile. I don’t want to be just another musician with a record label that’s putting out albums that are just … OK,” he said. “It’s got to be great, because this is everything to me. This is the reason I set on the road, this is the reason I dropped out of school. Everything has led up to this point. This is like the climax of what has been the last 19 years. It’s finally all come to a peak. This is more than I could ever ask for — it’s ridiculous.”

Josiah Trying to Get Inside the American Idol Finale After Party

TMZ posted a video of Josiah trying to get inside Skybar where the American Idol finale party was held.  Click here to see the video.

** Thanks to Rose from JLF for the heads up.   You guys can talk about what happened here.

Josiah’s Conversation in VFTW

For those who haven’t heard yet, Josiah posted on VFTW yesterday. You can read the whole conversation here. It’s official that he is now signed to Warner Bros.

Any news, jaimesinsaine?

nothin really just fucking long days in the studio. i’m finding that exerting myself mentally is about 10 times more exhausting than exerting myself physically. but i’m having a blast, things are sounding better than i expected!

Josiah, did you hear that American Idol showed you crying tonight?

nah, i don’t even bother keeping up anymore
like i give a shit haha

*insert chorus to theysay*

in a few months the roles will reverse, wait and watch…

If American Idol invited you to be a guest on the show or in the audience, would you do it?

at this point i’m doing everything in my power to seperate myself from the homeless kid on american idol.

i was a songwriter before AI, and i’m a songwriter now, things haven’t changed. just because of 5 minutes of airtime on the damn show doesn’t make me trapped in it’s crappy shadow for years to come. the music on the album i’m making will be a million miles from anything that has ever come out of the show, i can gurantee you that.

i’m not saying AI didn’t help me get my foot in the door, or give me the needed exposure to take off the ground as quickly as i did (thanks to awesome [sometimescrazy] fans, they know i love them), however it would be disgraceful of me to bask in the exposure i got from my 15 minutes on the fucking show and not try to more forward with my career, and fix the public perception of the “teenage, nomadic, freespirited, homeless, weepy, warbling, emo, car dwelling idol reject”.
isn’t it my responsibility to make them regret not putting me through? isn’t it anyone’s responsibility to prove wrong the people who don’t believe in them? or have we all gotten too fucking lazy? i have no problem biting the hand that feeds, it’s a necessary move, and if you look back in history it has shaped every aspect of current civilization. i will not settle for mediocrity.

now, as far as the album goes, it will be a mixture of some familiar tunes and some new stuff, i don’t want to give too much away. i can’t promise you’ll like it, but i promise no matter what is added, i will feel it with all of my heart and i will not let any additions take away from the emotion of the lyrics. i only write songs when i have something to say, so i’ll never be one to mask a shitty song with good production.

shit that was long……

can’t say this is advice, just a thought. even if it’s from the heart, it’s got to be relatable so if someone gets in your ear and offers a tip about reining some of it in or tweaking a sound, it might serve you well to listen.

yea, yea, yea, yea i listen to the people i trust.

i sure as fuck don’t know everything, but if there is one thing i know, it’s how to feel fucking pain, and sadness, and anger, and anxiety, and depression, and how to translate those emotions into music, lyric, and melody. i don’t need any advice on how to get my feelings out of my body, bc that is my version of crying.

but yea, of course if the producer suggests soandso sound here or suchandsuch here, i’m always down for giving things the benefit of the doubt. a lot of times i end up liking suggestions. but only extra musical suggestions and small arrangement things, i can handle lyrics, core music, and melodies on my own.

Josiah Talks : About His Myspace Status

lol, i had a feeling when i walked away from that camera, it was going to be on TMZ…good grief i’m tellin you these people are everywhere! i was actually going to a cafe to get a diet coke ( :about the status update, i’m good friends with both david A and his father. very nice people, the stab was at randy…and whoever said it was right, i’m going to be real, and act the way i usually act, and not worry about pissing people off. i love all my american idol fans, but i still need to reach more people with my music before it will translate into “commercial success”

haha, there are certain things i probably wouldn’t say if i knew how people would interprate them…that being said, i stand beside the things i say, bc i say what i mean. even if what i say offends people, i do not take things back, bc i do not say what i do not truly feel. take it or leave it ( :

i DID NOT WRITE the song anything beautiful. not the lyric, not the melody, not the music. i only sang it. wasn’t my favorite thing in the world, but it was a song i got paid to sing, i was in need of the money. it was submitted to be used in a downy commercial lol. nothing like the fresh scent of downy. needless to say, it wasn’t picked.

chris merritt wrote it, and he’s a cool guy, i respect him alot. he’s successful at what he does.

Source: VFTW

Interview From KnoxNews With Josiah Leming and Amy Flynn

There is a new article, video and a picture of Josiah and Amy Flynn on Knoxville News.  I’m  scared to post it here because of their copyright BS.  I want to post the photo here so bad.  But grrr… !
Anyway here it is.

AI Producer on Josiah’s Cut

This an interview with Nigel, producer of American Idol. Part of it mentions Josiah.

On the decision to give Josiah so much air time even though he was cut…
Great story. It’s always the same decision. Editorial decision is based on stories. It’s the same way as sometimes there’re about six of the top 12, top 24 you’ve never seen, maybe six boys and six girls. It’s just about stories. There’s a certain amount of airtime. We’ve got to cover four days of taping in two hours, and it’s one of the most interesting stories and we all felt that Josiah was a major story.

On the judges’ decision to cut Josiah…
I don’t honestly know. I don’t get in their heads sometimes when they make votes, and they do vary and they do change their minds. I think it was the voice wasn’t strong enough in comparison. It was harder than ever, I think they had more rows this year because the talent is unique, and it’s not just a blanket of good talent, that there are standout people.

On what he says to contestants who are at a disadvantage because they didn’t get as much air time as others…
I say Kelly Clarkson won. She wasn’t shown at all. You’ve got to be as good as you can be on every single performance. There is certainly, I would say an edge on having a story, but at the end of the day it’s how you come out this Tuesday and this Wednesday and sing your song.

Read the rest of the article by Victor Balta.

Simon Cowell Wanted Josiah in the Top 24

An article from Hollywood Today

Simon Cowell expresses misgivings over the early ejection of one of AI 2008’s lightning rods

By Jeffrey Jolson


HOLLYWOOD, CA (Hollywood Today) 2/23/08 – “American Idol” host Simon Cowell said that Josiah Leming, the weepy young hopeful who quickly became a lightning rod for the media and AI fans should probably not have been kept out of the 12 final male contestants.

Idol had built Leming, who cried a lot and sang with a British accent, into most every audition show, with a heart-wrenching back story that included a mother with cancer and living out of his car in order to live out his dream.

Hollywood Today caught up with Cowell and co-judge Randy Jackson at a Playboy Mansion party for Hotel Byblos, a St. Tropez resort and nightclub hotspot currently doing a promotional soiree tour for its 40th Anniversary. He didn’t want to do an interview at the social occasion but he did tell our reporter that he had misgivings about Josiah getting the boot after the audition phase. “We should have let him go through. It was not my decision and I don’t think we should have had him leave so early.”

(See related HT Video of the Playboy Mansion event)

The media wanted him to stay as well, and Leming got interview request immediately. He appeared on MTV news and then on the Ellen DeGeneres show among others.

He told MTV He has no regrets about any of the choices he made on “American Idol,” not even his critically drubbed take on Ben E. King’s “Stand by Me” that got him booted from the show. “There’s a small window of opportunity, and I don’t want to do it too quick or too slow,” he said. “I’ve always been aware of the fact that one day you can be everything, and the next day you can be nothing. It’s sitting in the back of my mind that I could just be another flash in the pan.”

Back to the party, which was quite flashy by design. Hotel Byblos is a posh resort with plenty of stars staying at its St. Tropez location on the French Riviera, not too far from other jet-set destinations Cannes and Monte Carlo. It has a hot nightclub, Les Caves du Roy, which it re-created for the evening at the Playboy Mansion, inviting VIPs to dance away the night in a giant tent, given the rain that evening. It is touring other cities with this concept as well and culminates with a 40th birthday party back in Saint Tropez this summer.

Hef and his girls from “Girls Next Door” were on hand in addition to the Idol judges and with the lushly tropical ambiance on the Mansion’s famed grotto and pool, it was a fitting celebration spot, though might have been more so if only the weather matched the balmy tanning sun of Saint Tropez. Guess we’ll just have to go there to find out after the Cannes Film Festival in May.

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