‘American Idol’ alumni notes: Katharine McPhee, Adam Lambert, and more

Katharine McPhee’s show starts soon…

In this week’s edition of “American Idol” notes, we literally have some news from all across the board when it comes to the stars of past seasons.

A “Smash”-ing performance? – Thanks in part to her new NBC show “Smash,” Katharine McPhee is getting an opportunity to prove that she is more than just a singer who lost to Taylor Hicks. We’ve seen the pilot episode that airs Monday night (we should have a review for it up this weekend) — and now, we have a performance that brings McPhee a little bit closer to her pop roots.

This original number written by Ryan Tedder (entitled “Touch”) is a good bit of fun, though you should be warned already that most of her actual performances on the show are more situated for the Broadway stage rather than the dance floor.

Adam Lambert’s music video tease – In just two days, the much-anticipated music video for Lambert’s “Better Than I Know Myself” will hit the internet– and it already looks like it has the making of something great.

First things first, we love the sort of two-way-mirror concept that is being played at here — one in which we’re presuming that Adam’s love interest (whether it be physical or metaphorical) is watching him from the other side. We’re still not sure what exactly to make of the oxygen tanks just yet, but this is more out of curiosity than any sort of actual concern for them being there. (We do always welcome theories!)

Based on what we’ve seen so far, we like the visual style — and, most importantly, the video seems to suit the song.

Kelly visited by Clay Aiken – Kelly Clarkson performed a gig on her “Stronger” tour this week in Durham, North Carolina, and it was a rather special one in that she was joined by her former touring partner in Clay Aiken — who of course came in second place the year after Kelly left “Idol.”

We figure what most people will be interested in here is hearing Kelly’s newest concert cover — this time for Sara Bereilles’ “Gravity.” While we try to be critical, we only have one word to describe this intimate performance — amazing.

Kellie Picker’s debut – For those curious, Kellie Pickler’s new album “100 Proof” is faring decently so far on the album charts thanks to a #7 launch on the Billboard 200. This is Pickler’s strongest debut yet, and it sold a solid 27,000 copies. (For those curious, Adele was at #1 ¬†yet again for her mammoth release “21.”)

The good news for Pickler moving forward is that the previews for “Proof” were overwhelmingly positive, which can help to expand her sales base beyond just people who remember her from the show. With the next month being a bit slower when it comes to releases, there is certainly potential here to expand.

There is a new episode of “Idol” airing on Wednesday night — and as per usual, we will have full snap judgments of all contestants as well as some wackiness from Steven Tyler and Randy “bring in the Kraken” Jackson.

Photo: NBC

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