Aspen Spin entered the inner sanctum of Fox TV's American Idol, at the judges auditions in Aspen, Colorado. Once you get behind the curtain of Fox's #1 rated hit television series it's an extremely regulated and controlled environment. Security was ultra tight and highly visible. We haven't seen so many huge dudes with ear pieces dressed in black since Bill Clinton came to town. The American Idol machine is well oiled as it preps for it's 11th season which premiers Sunday January 22, 2012 immediately following the NFC Championship game.
Luckily, we have a friend with connections at Fox, so A-Spin was added to the media list for the American Idol press conference at the Doerr-Hosier Center at Aspen Meadows. The rules were perfectly clear ..."no still photos, no personal questions" Whaaaaaat?? No photos?? The message that we received from the PR hotties..loud and clear... is that Fox and A.I. like to control their own message. It was instantly obvious that Aspen Spin was identified as a possible "hot spot". A very large bald guy (size estimate 6'8" 290 lbs) apparently was assigned to keep an eye peeled on the blogger as he never got very far outside my personal space.
"Emmy Nominated" host Ryan Seacrest was first out of hair and make-up. He slung an arm around my shoulder, thinking it was the bouncer about to hassle me, I turned to find a perfectly coifed Ryan who encouraged me to ask Randy about his "high altitude rash". "Grammy-Award winning producer" Randy Jackson returning as an A.I. judge was next out of the dressing area. "Wut up dawg?" he called out as he fist pumped me on his way to podium. " I like dat hat, dawg, ...and the shades". "This is Aspen" I replied trying to sound super-duper cool. Then J-Lo, "Global Icon" Jennifer Lopez came out. Wow!!! she is haaaaawt in person. We exchanged a fist bump as I pulled out my shooter and asked sheepishly "hey girl, you wanna be on Aspen Spin"? She appeared to be amiable and soft spoken, almost shy and very polite... along with being illuminatingly fine. She waved a friendly, smoking hot finger in my face and said "no still photos please". The bouncer gave me a serious dosage of stink eye, so I put my camera away. "Rock Legend" Steven Tyler took the long way around to the stage, avoiding Aspen Spin, so we missed out on a personal interaction with the final judge.
The first few questions were obvious plants from a "coordinating entertainment producer" at Fox News Network (with 4 linked connections and 1 film credit on IMDB for the role of "Reporter" in the Fantastic Four Movie). The Rock Legend Tyler, took the opportunity to answer the first softball question by throwing down an Aerosmith-like vocal solo....sort of a yodel. Randy commented..."it's a little pitchy, dawg". J Lo. was sporting a pair of very sexy shorts (by Tibe) and spiked heels (by Christian Louboutin) admitted she "works wit (sic) a stylist". who apparently failed to plan for today's snow flurries in Aspen. When Ryan was asked about preparing for stardom he said "you can't prepare for it...but remember who you are". Randy talked about the"high level of talent" and the "hippie chicks" in the Colorado Region and warned San Diego (the last stop on American Idol's tour) to be "all of it" next week. Executive Producer Nigel Lythgoe confirmed the 25 to 30 contestants from the Colorado Region would make the cut and earn a trip to Hollywood.
When asked about visiting Aspen, his first trip since 1976, Rock Legend Steven Tyler said, "We love it here, the town is empty and its ours, we own it".
What Rock Legend Steven Tyler and the whole BIG TIME crew of American Idol might not realize... a lot of people think they own Aspen.
All images provided by Fox TV.