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Clive's Speech

Ain't Music to Kelly's Ears

5/24/2007 8:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

After Clive Davis' very public display of rejection toward pop superstar Kelly Clarkson (via a speech that canonized Saint Carrie Underwood) on last night's "American Idol" finale, sources tell TMZ that SONY/BMG execs were apologizing to members of Clarkson's camp for their label head's rude behavior.

The 75-year-old owlish music mogul was tasked with speaking to the huge TV audience about the health of the "A.I" franchise and appeared to go out of his way to avoid mentioning Kelly's new single "Never Again" (which reached the Top 10 for heaven's sake!) or her forthcoming CD, "My December." Yet he somehow managed to find time to plug both Taylor Hicks and Katharine McPhee's new singles! Clive did briefly allude to two-time Grammy winner Clarkson -- but only to praise the talents of outside songwriters working with "Idols." Ouch!

Sources backstage at the finale report that Sony/BMG execs attempted to apologize to Kelly's team -- but their backtracking on behalf of the man with the golden ears fell on deaf ears. A well-placed source told TMZ, "Clive's actions, both delaying the album, and now this, tell you everything you need to know about how he feels about Kelly." That's no way to treat a 15-million-album-selling lady!

As TMZ reported
, the contentious feud erupted between honcho Davis and Kelly after she refused to make the "significant changes" to her new album (for which she wrote or co-wrote every song) -- that Clive demanded.

Artistic integrity - 1, The Man - 0!

A rep for Clive Davis told TMZ, "There is no truth to this story whatsoever. The focus of Clive's speech was on the recent Idol successes."

122 COMMENTS

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91.

PJR    

What happened to the Kelly C. that won A.I.? If people call that singing, then I guess I'm missing something! She doesn't sing, she SCREAMS! I'm with Clive on this one! I realize not everyone is skinny, but there are clothes for chunky people too! Her stage presence is pathetic!!! C'mon she needs to look in a mirror, or get a new stylist! If all of the songs on her new CD are like the one she sang on the A.I. finale, then it SUCKS!! BIG TIME! She might want to reconsider what Clive Davis said, and go back to being the Kelly C. that I voted for on American Idol! Screamin' is NOT Singin'!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2651 days ago
92.

homer smith    

TO THOSE OF YOU WHO ARE DENIGRATING MR. DAVIS, THEN, IT'S REALLY SHAME ON YOU. MAYBE CLARKSON SHOULD GO BACK TO WAITING ON TABLES, AND BUYING HER CLOTHES AT THE GOOD WILL!! SHE WOULD FEEL MORE AT HOME. THERE IS ALWAYS GOING TO BE SOMEONE BETTER, PRETTIER AND MORE TALENTED. MR. DAVIS HAS WORKED WITH THE ABSOLUTE BEST!! K.C. DIDN'T DO IT THE OLD FASHION WAY. OTHERS HAVE, THEY WORKED, REALLY WORKED FOR THIER FAME. K.C HAD IT EASIER BY BEING ON A.I.
TEAM DAVIS

2651 days ago
93.

Deb    

# 83, HOW true. But, Clive DIDN'T sign Elliott, remember. The ONLY one he didn't. Oh, well, his loss. When Yamin outsells Kat, and maybe even Taylor, who'll be laughing then? He is a grumpy old man who needs to go away and let someone YOUNGER and more open minded take over. He has lost it..................if he ever had it!

2651 days ago
94.

marqy    

i hate her new single and dont really care for her either i know everyone saying shes being an artist standing her own ground but if it sounds like crap i dont think the man is going to want it out especially if its own on his label but whatever i guess i am not buying the record just bc i dont really care for her but Carrie underwood is great leave the girl alone shes adorable and chris daughtry is amazing wo cares if he hasnt won any awards but most music that is great are usually never seen or heard by mainstream

2651 days ago
95.

Deb    

I guess free speech is dead? My comments were deleted. I have read much worse stuff on here. Oh well, I KNOW what I said was true, like it or not, McFans!

2651 days ago
96.

calgirl99    

I was not a Kelly Clarkson fan until I saw her at Wango Tango. That girl can sing. Glad she didn't change her music. I'd actually buy tickets to see her in concert.

Kelly Rocks!

2651 days ago
97.

DaMama    

Clive Davis's time has passed. It's time for him to step down. He's lost it as far as knowing what the public wants musically. He produced Bo Bice's CD, and it was not that good. He shoved schlock-pop songs on that CD, knowing darn well that Bo was a southern rocker. Bo was under contract and did what he was told. He is now recording a southern country-rock CD and I"m sure it will be MUCH better.

Davis messed up Clay Aiken's 3rd CD in the same manner. Aiken wanted to do all original songs written by himself, Steven Curtis Chapman and other current songwriters. Davis nixed that and had him do remakes of 70's and 80's songs. His CD did not sell as well.
Davis had sappy Diane Warren songs on Taylor Hick's CD too. Talk about oil and water! Taylor is an old-school soul singer. I still listen to his CD more than any other AI winner. Taylor has raw talent and is absolutely electricfying in concert. His concerts have sold out 95% all over the country. He is the most unique AI winner and deserved better from Davis.

Carrie Underwood still looks like a tree stump when she sings - NO stage presence whatsoever. I don't understand why her CD has sold so much. She is an OK singer who is gorgeous and fits the "good southern girl" image. Bo Bice was clearly more talented than she was and deserved to win AI in Season 4.

It's time for Clive Davis to retire. He's lost it.

2651 days ago
98.

legal    

Kelly was a complete disaster at AI finale both vocally and song wise. Someone comparing Clide's consistent approval of Whitney with his well deserved neglect of Kelly accounts for huge gap in talent between the two. Whitney with her multiple problems is still a great singer and Kelly is not and will never be. The more she snapps the more she loses. Her final album is below average.

2651 days ago
99.

susan    

Lets face it, Clive Davis dosen't always give out the best advice. He's the one that convinced Clay Aiken to do a album of covers instead of an album of original material and his album tanked big time. Thats his second album I'm referring to. Why would he think Kelly would want to do a song for her album that Linsay Lohen had already recorded. I think Kelly was smart in doing what she did and hopefully her album will sell well and probe Clive wrong. The first think I said after Clive gave his speech was that was almost a slam on Kelly so I picked up on that too. He should appreciate her more.

2651 days ago
100.

Rae    

I like both Kelly and Carrie. But ...... it is so obvious that many here did not see Kelly on AI1. Her vocal range is incredible - much more so than Carrie's. She just happens to prefer rock to pop.

2651 days ago
101.

Lj    

i kind of agree with clive the new kelly songs ive heard are a real disapointment

2651 days ago
102.

Gossip Hog    

I only watch for the bad singers at the start of the American Idol season. After that i could care less about who wins that crap.

2651 days ago
103.

Ha    

Funny how everyone is buzzing about Kelly's album being good or bad. Sounds like someone have a very good promotional team.

2651 days ago
104.

legal    

#98 Tricia, I agree with you 200%. Kelly quickly forgot where she came from and even with AI she was disrespectful quite a few times and Simon told her off. Mr. Davis has been working with the best and he senses the best in every talented person that is why he was so supportive of Whitney inspite of her setbacks. I don't know what Kelly did before AI but you are right going back to her roots might straighten her up a little and remind her that a true talen does not need to scream about it.

2651 days ago
105.

lubug    

Clive's just afraid of change. He's used to being able to push artists to be as commercial as possible, and Kelly's moving away from that. I acknowledge his wisdom in the industry as he's produced several major artists in the past, however the manner in which he's dealing with this is very immature.

As for the whole "kelly fans are so rude" comment I quite disagree. Being one myself (though not as extreme as some,) I find her fans to be quite the opposite, and incredibly devoted and affectionate towards her.

As for the Carrie thing, the only reason she gets dragged into Kelly conversations is because out of all the idols she is the closest to matching Kelly's album sales. I have her album and it's pretty good,though I do think she's getting a bit too much attention at awards shows for it. That, I believe, has partly to do with the genre she is in, however. And to the people who keep bringing up how Carrie acknowledges idol every chance she gets, you're right! She should. She's winning awards for a debut album, produced from idol material. Kelly had no reason to thank idol for "Breakaway". She already acknowledged them on her debut album and that's as far as she needed to go. She paid her dues and took the idol route for her debut album. "Breakaway" however, was her own creation and her own work-there's a big difference between "Before Your Love" and "Because of You." She's not ungrateful or else she wouldn't take every opportunity to get out there and meet the people who voted for her and supported her during the show. But why should she continue to thank Idol and those producers every step of the road when they are no longer feeding her material. Her own artistry has and is going to continue to generate longevity for her career, not Idol.

Overall I think 1.) Carrie has nothing to do with this, 2.) Clive needs to grow up and just be honest about how he feels and leave the success of Kelly's album up to her camp and her fans and 3.) Kelly should be commended as an artist for putting out music she feels comfortable with. Art is self-expression, and she's taking a risk, putting music out there that she knows will probably lose her many fans who enjoy her more commercial material. Yet she's still putting it out there because it's the only way she knows how to honestly express herself.

2651 days ago
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