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August 12, 2008: "Clay Mates Are Thrilled That Clay Aiken Has Become A Daddy"

Former "American Idol" Clay Aiken is a daddy now and his fans are responding to the news by standing by their man. After all, they are Claymates.

Clay, 29, and his best friend, producer Jaymes Foster, welcomed a baby boy into the world recently in Clay's home state of North Carolina.

The baby, who weighed in at 6 pounds, 2 ounces and has dark hair, is named Parker Foster Aiken.

Although the Claymates are in favor of their favorite crooner becoming a father, there are many non-Clay fans that don't believe the singer should be a dad.

According to a survey by Celebrity News Service, it appears Clay has more fans than naysayers. While Clay and his best friend Jaymes plan on raising the baby together, the birth of Parker has stirred the long-asked question about Clay's sexuality.

While Clay refuses to discuss his sexuality with the media, his fans only seem to care about his singing and now his new baby. "I love Clay no matter what and I can't wait to see pictures of his baby," one fan said.

***

August 8, 2008: "Clay Aiken, Jaymes Foster Welcome Baby"

Clay Aiken's friend Jaymes Foster, who was pregnant with his child, gave birth to baby boy Parker early this morning in North Carolina.

Though theyre not romantically involved, the American Idol stud and his babymamma Jaymes Foster conceived Parker Foster Aiken by means of artificial insemination.

Aiken's mother, Faye, said the dark-haired Parker weighs 6 lbs., 2 oz., and is 19" long. She says Clay is "smiling from ear-to-ear" over this.

***

July 24, 2008: "Clay Aiken Blogs About Children In Africa"

Former "American Idol" star Clay Aiken will soon become a first-time father and he had children on his mind recently while blogging.

Aiken, 29 and a UNICEF ambassador, recently visited Somalia and Kenya and has been blogging about his trip on the UNICEF Web site.

Aiken has been writing about the violence during the country's election earlier this year and the fact that it has left thousands of children homeless. Many of those kids have still not returned to their schools.

"Getting children back to school is vital for their protection, and helps build a sense of normalcy in their lives," Aiken writes. "The re-establishment of schools in the most difficult circumstances is a testament to the commitment of UNICEF and to Kenyans."

Aiken continues, "Every child has the right to an education. Education transforms lives and breaks the cycle of poverty that so many children are caught in. And an educated child will make sure his or her own children receive an education too."

Aiken will become a father himself soon. It was announced in May that Aiken artificially inseminated music producer Jaymes Foster, whom he met when he was on "American Idol." Foster, the sister of legendary music producer David Foster, is due in August.

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* Clay Aiken - Without You video *


* Clay Aiken - Everlasting Love video *

Music pop singer Clay Aiken picture(s)/pic(s), wallpapr, video and photo gallery, albums covers pictures.
Birth name: Clayton Holmes Grissom.
Born: November 30, 1978 Raleigh, North Carolina USA.

Clay Aiken biography (bio):
Clay Aiken is an American pop singer who began his rise to fame on the second season of the television program American Idol in 2003. After placing second, RCA Records offered him a recording contract, and his multi-platinum debut album Measure of a Man was released in October 2003. Subsequently, he has released three more albums: Merry Christmas with Love, A Thousand Different Ways, and the Christmas EP, All is Well. Based on his album sales, which are surpassed only by winners Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood, Aiken has become the most successful second-place finisher in that show's history.
In the four years following his American Idol appearance Aiken has launched seven tours. While on tour during the summer of 2004, Aiken wrote his NY Times best-selling book Learning to Sing: Hearing the Music in Your Life with Allison Glock. The book is an inspirational memoir that focuses on the most important people in his life as a child and young adult, and the importance of his faith.
Aiken was the executive producer for his 2004 televised Christmas special, A Clay Aiken Christmas, which was later released on DVD. He has been a frequent talk show guest, particularly on The Tonight Show and Jimmy Kimmel Live, and has participated in comedy skits on Kimmel and Saturday Night Live. He worked as a correspondent for The Insider at the 2005 Emmy Awards, and has appeared on several television dramas as a guest actor/singer, including Ed, Scrubs, and Days of Our Lives.
While a contestant on the American Idol show Aiken said that he wanted to use his celebrity to give back. Following that path, he created the Bubel/Aiken Foundation, accepted a UNICEF ambassadorship, has given his support to various charities and was appointed by George W. Bush to a committee that acts in an advisory capacity to the President and the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services on matters relating to programs and services for persons with intellectual disabilities.

Early years:
Clay Aiken was born and raised in Raleigh, North Carolina. As a young boy, Aiken sang in the Raleigh Boychoir and as a teenager, he sang in school choirs, church choir, musicals and local theatre productions. After high school he sang lead with a local band, Just By Chance, and cohosted and performed with the band at "Just by Chance and Friends" shows in Dunn, NC. He was also emcee and performer at the Johnston Community College Country Showcase in Smithfield, NC, and at the North Carolina Music Connection and Hometown Music Connection shows in Garner and Benson, NC. He performed the national anthem numerous times for the Raleigh Ice Caps and the Carolina Hurricanes. Three demo albums of Aiken's vocals were created before American Idol with the aid of studio time given as a birthday gift by his mother: a cassette called Redefined, a CD titled Look What Love Has Done, and a CD that combined songs from both demos, titled "Look What Love Has Done, Vol 2."
Aiken attended Raleigh's Leesville Road High School and took courses at Campbell University before enrolling at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. He found his interest in special education while directing YMCA children's camps as a teenager, and at age 19 he served as a substitute teacher for a classroom of students with autism at Brentwood Elementary School in Raleigh. While attending college in Charlotte he took a part-time job as an assistant to a boy with autism, and it was this child's mother, Diane Bubel, who urged him to audition for American Idol. Although his American Idol activities temporarily delayed his academic pursuits, Aiken completed his course work while on tour and graduated with a bachelor's degree in special education in December of 2003.

American Idol:
Television viewers' first glimpse of Aiken came during the audition episodes at the beginning of American Idol's second season. The show's judges first saw Aiken as a nerdy type unlikely to be any kind of idol, but after hearing him sing Heatwave's "Always and Forever" decided to advance him to the next round. The clip of the judges' surprise during this audition performance was replayed many times over the course of the competition.
Aiken made it to the round-of-32 before being cut from the show, but he was invited to return for the "Wild Card" round; his performance of Elton John's "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me" sent him on to the final 12 as the viewer's choice. While noted for his performance of ballads, such as Neil Sedaka's "Solitaire", his upbeat performances, including The Foundations' "Build Me Up Buttercup", were also appreciated. Aided by a makeover from the show's producers, Aiken received enough votes every week to keep him out of the bottom three.
On 21 May 2003, Aiken came in a close second to Studdard, who won the contest by 130,000 votes out of more than 24,000,000 votes cast. The result was controversial, as some hypothesized that Idol's voting system was incapable of handling the number of attempted calls. In an interview prior to the start of the fifth season of American Idol, Executive Producer Nigel Lythgoe revealed for the first time that Aiken had led the fan voting every week from the Wild Card week to the finale, when the possibly-random voting result gave Studdard the win. Though officially Aiken was the show's "first runner-up," he has since gone on to be the second season's best-selling star.
Rolling Stone featured Aiken on the cover of their July 2003 issue. In the cover article he mentioned accidentally running over his kitten when he was sixteen, saying, "Seeing that cat die, I actually think that its spirit has haunted me. I wasn't afraid of cats before. But now they scare me to death." Later that year PETA, based on Aiken's comment, drafted an insulting ad featuring Triumph the Insult Comic Dog. Aiken's attorneys stepped in and PETA spokeswoman Ingrid Newkirk told the New York Daily News. "We got a lawyer calling and our lawyers said maybe we can work something out, make the ad evaporate, and put a leash on the insult dog." The ad campaign never launched.
Aiken appeared three times on American Idol during Season Three. On the Top 12 show, he performed "Solitaire" and gave advice to the finalists. On Disco Night, he performed Earth, Wind & Fire's "Fantasy" with the final four. On the final night of the season, he hosted a gathering of Fantasia fans in Greensboro Coliseum.
On the final show of Season 5, Aiken made a surprise appearance. Failed auditioner Michael Sandecki returned to the show to receive a "Golden Idol" award for Best Impersonator for his Clay Aiken-like appearance. During the middle of his victory serenade, Aiken walked out, debuting a new look with longer, darker hair, and joined Sandecki in singing "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me".

Music:
On October 14, 2003, Aiken released his first solo album, Measure of a Man, which debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 and was, with 613,000 copies sold in its first week, the highest-selling debut for a solo artist in 10 years, and to date the highest debut of any Idol. The album received RIAA Double Platinum certification November 17, 2003 (a Double Platinum plaque was presented to Aiken by Clive Davis on October 22, 2003, during Good Morning America). The album spawned both the hit single "Invisible" and his first hit song, "This Is the Night" (both co-written by British songwriter Chris Braide). Later that year, Aiken won the Fan's Choice Award at the American Music Awards ceremony, and his CD single "This Is the Night/Bridge Over Troubled Water" won the Billboard award for the Best-Selling Single of 2003.
On November 16, 2004, Aiken also released a holiday album entitled Merry Christmas With Love, which set a new record for fastest-selling holiday album in the Soundscan era (since 1991). The album debuted at #4 on the Billboard 200 and tied Cline Dion's record for the highest debut by a holiday album in the history of Billboard magazine. "Merry Christmas With Love" sold over 1,000,000 copies retail in 6 weeks and was the best-selling holiday album of 2004, receiving RIAA Platinum certification on Jan. 6, 2005.
Aiken's third album, A Thousand Different Ways, was released September 19, 2006. He worked on the album under the guidance of Canadian producer and A&R executive Jaymes Foster. The album contains ten cover songs, and four new songs, one of which Aiken co-wrote. Clive Davis is credited with the cover concept. One additional song, "Lover All Alone", written by Aiken and David Foster, is included with the album on iTunes. Debuting at #2 on the Billboard chart, A Thousand Different Ways made Aiken the fourth artist ever to have his first three albums debut in the Top 5 and scan over 200,000 in the first week.
Aiken's fourth album, All is Well (an EP of four Christmas songs), was released exclusively to Walmart on November 28, 2006.
Aiken stated in an April 2007 interview with People that he is looking at making a new album soon, and at his May 2007 Kimmel appearance, he mentioned that he was in Los Angeles interviewing producers for the new album.

Television:
Aiken has made many television appearances. He sang The Star-Spangled Banner on opening night of the 2003 World Series and appeared in numerous television specials during the winter of 2003, including Disney's Christmas Day Parade and the Nick At Nite Holiday Special, where he sang the "Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth" with Bing Crosby via special effects. Aiken starred in and executive produced his first TV special (December 2004), titled A Clay Aiken Christmas, with special guests Barry Manilow, Yolanda Adams, and Megan Mullally; the special was released on DVD later that month. On July 4th, 2004, Aiken was one of the performers in the A Capitol Fourth concert in Washington, DC and performed in the Good Morning America Summer Concert Series in 2004 and 2005.
Aiken was the musical guest on Saturday Night Live in 2004 and participated in several skits. He has appeared multiple times on The Tonight Show, interviewing with Jay Leno as a guest in addition to singing, and he has become a regular guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live. The Kimmel appearances often feature skits: in one Kimmel's girlfriend Sarah Silverman confessed to an affair with Aiken, and in another, Aiken expressed his distaste for Kimmel's jokes about him by beating him up. In May of 2007, he spent the first half of his interview on horseback while talking about his recent UNICEF trip to Afghanistan. A few weeks later he appeared as a spokesperson for "Guillermo's Mustache" in Kimmel's fictional DVD informercial shown on the Dancing With the Stars finale. Aiken made his acting debut on Ed in early 2004 playing himself, and in 2005 he was interviewed by Erica Kane on All My Children. He played the role of cafeteria worker Kenny whose job was in jeopardy on the Scrubs episode "My Life in Four Cameras". In December 2006, he made an appearance as himself on Days of our Lives.
After hosting and performing in the American Idol Christmas special in 2003, Aiken has had several subsequent hosting jobs. He was a special correspondent for The Insider for the 2005 Emmy Awards, and on the sets of the sitcom Reba with Reba McEntire and Dancing With the Stars. He co-hosted The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet in 2006, and on November 17, 2006, filling in for Regis Philbin, Aiken was guest host on Live with Regis and Kelly. During an interview Aiken covered Kelly Ripa's mouth with his hand, and there was considerable media reaction after Ripa complained at length about the incident on her show the following Monday. Aiken made fun of the controversy on the 2006 American Music Awards the next night with Tori Spelling. On the The Tyra Banks Show in 2006, filmed before the Ripa incident, Aiken mentioned wanting to have his own talk show someday, and Banks switched seats with him and let him interview her for one segment of the show.

Tours:
From February to April 2004, Aiken embarked on the "Independent Tour" with Kelly Clarkson, winner of the first American Idol contest. Following this tour, he was scheduled for a few summer solo tour dates, but demand ultimately led to the booking of fifty dates across the United States, resulting in what many fans called the "Not-a-Tour." Disney, promoting their Aladdin Special Edition 2-Disc DVD, was the exclusive sponsor of Aiken's Summer Concert Tour. Each concert previewed Aiken's rendition of "Proud of Your Boy", a song originally intended for the first release of the film but cut when the Aladdin storyline changed during production. A music video, featuring Aiken, is presented on the Aladdin Special Edition 2-Disc DVD. On this tour he also performed a duet, "Without You," which was featured on Kimberley Locke's 2004 debut album One Love.
In November 2004, Aiken launched his third tour of the year, which revolved around a Christmas theme. "The Joyful Noise Tour", sponsored by Ronald McDonald House Charities, featured a conductor and a 30-piece orchestra. In some cities, Aiken was supported by the local philharmonic or symphony, such as the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Local choirs from high schools and elementary schools also participated at each concert.
During the summer of 2005, Aiken, along with a seven-piece band and three back-up singers, toured part of North America with the "Jukebox Tour," performing songs of the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s, as well as a few favorites from Measure of a Man. He also performed a few new songs being considered for his next album.
In early November 2005, Aiken launched his second Christmas tour. The 2005 Joyful Noise tour featured a series of vignettes, written by Aiken, which told the story of an older woman who has lost the Christmas spirit and a young boy who helps her find it again. A cast of actors, dancers and back-up singers traveled with the tour, and members of local theater groups were added in each venue for smaller, non-speaking roles and crowd scenes. The tour opened in Vancouver, Canada, on November 2, and ended in Clearwater, Florida on December 30. According to Pollstar, Aiken's first five tours grossed $28 million dollars.
In December 2006, Aiken mounted his third Christmas tour, comprising performances in eighteen Midwest and East Coast cities. Aiken was supported by local orchestras, which also opened the concerts with a program of seasonal music. Banter between songs, always a feature on Aiken tours, increased on this tour to the point that approximately 40 minutes of the 90 minute set was comedy and conversation from Aiken.
A 23-date tour across the U.S. began on July 4, 2007 and will end in Orlando, Florida on August 19. On this tour Aiken is performing with local symphonies, along with tour regulars Jesse Vargas, pianist, conductor and arranger, and back-up singers Quiana Parler and Angela Fisher.
On the morning of July 7, 2007, while traveling between concerts in Houston and Tulsa on consecutive nights, there was an incident involving Aiken and a female passenger. According to the Washington Post, "The woman gave him 'a minor shove' and a piece of her mind...but the Continental Airlines flight crew managed to defuse the situation." As is standard procedure, the FBI questioned the man and woman and several witnesses, but no charges were brought. In a statement to Entertainment Tonight Aiken explained what happened. "While sleeping on a plane over the weekend, my foot evidently found a home on the arm rest of the passenger seated directly in front of me. I didn't realize I was causing the woman any distress until she woke me up with a quick hit to the chest. Unfortunately, being that this happened on a plane, the FBI was called in to investigate and eventually we were all sent on our way. I'd like to thank everyone for their concern; I am fine and have taken steps to prevent any foot wandering in the future." Aiken also added a plug for UNICEF, commenting that there are far more important things happening in the world to be concerned about.
The summer tour resumes in Philadelphia, PA on July 17, 2007. Dates are being added for a fourth Christmas tour, The Magical Holiday Tour, planned for the 2007 holiday season.

Faith and philosophy:
In 2004 Aiken made the New York Times Best Seller List, debuting at #2, with his "inspirational memoir" entitled Learning to Sing: Hearing the Music in Your Life, written with Allison Glock, and published by Random House. Barely mentioning American Idol, in the book he instead turned his focus to the people who had the most influence in his life--his mother, grandparents, siblings, teachers, friends--and to the importance of religion in his life.
While not self-identified as a Christian music artist, Aiken was featured in Christian Music Planet as an "American Idol Christian" in 2004, and in a cover story, "Clay Aiken's Balancing Act," in the January/February 2005 issue. His pre-Idol demo albums included several CCM and gospel songs, and a performance of the Commodores' "Jesus is Love" at the American Music Awards in 2003 earned Aiken and Ruben Studdard a standing ovation. Aiken has sung a few CCM songs at his pop concerts, and has made Christmas albums, Christmas television specials and performances, and Christmas tours essential elements of his career.
He described himself in Learning to Sing as a proud Southern Baptist who had journeyed away from those roots in his late teens in search of a religion with more liberal social policies, and then returned to that church because of family and social ties although he remains at odds with the church on some issues. When asked in a PBS Kids interview to name his idols, he responded, "When people ask me what three people Id like to have dinner with, living or dead, I say Jesus Christ, Mr. Rogers, and Jimmy Carter."
Aiken makes it clear that he is aware not everyone shares his religious beliefs and it is not his intention to press these beliefs on others. When he worked as a camp counselor at the YMCA, he challenged other camp faculty by insisting that singing "overtly Christian songs" was inappropriate, as some of the kids were Jewish. "I stood firm....no child is going to have a spiritual crisis on my watch." His public philosophy, geared towards inclusion and service to others, reflects his stance that decisions about religion should be made at home.
Clay Aiken - Measure of a man album cover
Clay Aiken - Measure of a man album cover
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Clay Aiken - This Is The Night Bridge Over Troubled Water album cover
Clay Aiken - This Is The Night Bridge Over Troubled Water album cover
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Clay Aiken - Merry Christmas With Love album cover
Clay Aiken - Merry Christmas With Love album cover
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Clay Aiken - A Thousand Different Ways album cover
Clay Aiken - A Thousand Different Ways album cover
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Clay Aiken : C56328
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Clay Aiken - The Way Solitaire album cover
Clay Aiken - The Way Solitaire album cover
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