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Clay Aiken

As the second-place contestant on Fox television's second season of American Idol, vocalist Clay Aiken wowed television audiences with his Southern charm, sweet demeanor, and powerful tenor voice, all of which combined to make him a pop star (and, later, a fixture on Broadway). Originally, Aiken had planned to try out for the reality TV series The American Race, but went ahead and auditioned for the Idol competition to please an encouraging friend. Out of 7,000 hopefuls, the Charlotte, North Carolina native won the hearts of the judges as well as millions of fans across the globe. Born on November 30, 1978, Aiken began singing at an early age, and was confident enough to perform the Dolly Parton/Kenny Rogers classic "Islands in the Stream" at a local high-school dance by age five. Two year later, he was buying albums through a mail-order catalog, eager to get his hands on any kind of music. Aiken's blossoming talent continued into his teenage years, when he became a regular member of the Raleigh Boys Choir and enjoyed roles in The Music Man, Oklahoma!, various stage plays, and regional playhouse shows. When it came time to go to college, music wasn't Aiken's strongest calling. He studied special education instead, and set his sights on attending Virginia's College of William & Mary for a master's degree in administration. Before he could further his education, however, Aiken auditioned for American Idol and ended up wooing a weekly audience of 21 million television viewers in early 2003. His rendition of Simon & Garfunkel's "Bridge Over Troubled Waters" sewed him a spot among Americans' hearts, and although he finished second to Ruben Studdard, Aiken's loss was not taken lightly. He landed a deal with RCA through Simon Fuller's 19 Recordings Limited within weeks of the show's finale. That same month, Aiken's debut single, "This Is the Night," made history by shooting to number one on Billboard's Hot 100 chart. It sold more than 392,000 copies during its first week, besting Elton John's previous record for "Candle in the Wind 1997." In October 2003, Aiken returned to the spotlight and issued his full-length studio debut, The Measure of a Man. Once again, the little guy with the big voice made a big splash, and The Measure of a Man sold 613,000 copies while climbing to number one on Billboard's Top 200 during its first week of release. Aiken's first holiday effort, Merry Christmas with Love, followed in November 2004. The album debuted at number one on Billboard's Top Holiday Albums chart, giving Merry Christmas with Love the biggest debut week sales figures for a Christmas album in SoundScan history. Aiken released A Thousand Different Ways in September 2006 and made his Broadway debut in early 2008, playing the role of Sir Robin in Spamalot. On My Way Here arrived that same year, featuring a track penned by OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder. Aiken released Tried & True, a collection of standards from the '50s and '60s, in 2010 on the Decca label. In 2012, on the heels of his appearance on NBC's Celebrity Apprentice, Aiken released the album Steadfast, featuring tracks off Tried & True as well as a few more of his favorite songs to sing in concert. Also included was his original single "Bring Back My Love." ~ MacKenzie Wilson & Andrew Leahey
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Stations Featuring
Clay Aiken

    '00s Pop

    '00s Pop
    1 song

    Pop Holiday

    Pop Holiday
    3 songs

Albums by
Clay Aiken

Top Songs by
Clay Aiken

  1.   Song
  2.   The First Noel
  3.   O Holy Night
  4.   Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
  5.   Winter Wonderland
  6.   Mary, Did You Know?
  7.   This Is the Night
  8.   Invisible
  9.   Bridge Over Troubled Water
  10.   Merry Christmas With Love
  11.   Sleigh Ride
  12.   Where I Draw the Line
  13.   I Want to Know What Love Is by Suzie McNeil
  14.   Weight of the World
  15.   Because You Loved Me
  16.   When You Say You Love Me
  17.   Who's Sorry Now
  18.   Suspicious Minds
  19.   Misty
  20.   It's Impossible
  21.   Crying
  22.   Can't Take My Eyes Off You
  23.   Something About Us
  24.   When I See You Smile
  25.   Right Here Waiting
  26.   What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?
  27.   Don't Save It All for Christmas Day
  28.   The Christmas Song
  29.   Joy to the World
  30.   Medley: Hark the Herald Angels Sing/O Come All Ye Faithful
  31.   Silent Night
  32.   Measure of a Man
  33.   Shine
  34.   The Way
  35.   Solitaire
  36.   Everything I Do (I Do It for You)
  37.   Every Time You Go Away
  38.   Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word
  39.   Unchained Melody
  40.   Sacrificial Love
  41.   Moon River
  42.   Lover All Alone
  43.   Without You
  44.   Touch
  45.   Bring Back My Love
  46.   There's a Kind of Hush
  47.   Mack the Knife
  48.   It's Only Make Believe
  49.   As Long as We're Here
  50.   Falling
  51.   Ashes
  52.   Everything I Have
  53.   No More Sad Songs
  54.   Here You Come Again
  55.   I Survived You
  56.   Broken Wings
  57.   Grace of God
  58.   A Thousand Days
  59.   These Open Arms
  60.   Breaking Up Is Hard to Do
  61.   Perfect Day
  62.   On My Way Here
  63.   I Will Carry You
  64.   The Real Me
  65.   Run to Me
  66.   Everything I Don't Need
  67.   Lonely No More
  68.   What Kind of Fool Am I?
  69.   On the Wings of Love
  70.   Because It's Christmas (For All the Children) featuring Barry Manilow
  71.   Special Feature: Behind-The-Scenes Footage
  72.   Happy Holidays/White Christmas by Barry Manilow
  73.   Christmas Waltz
  74.   Santa Claus Is Coming to Town featuring Barry Manilow
  75.   Siver Bells by Quiana Parler
  76.   Proud of You Boy
  77.   [CD-ROM Track]
  78.   Build Me Up Buttercup
  79.   Eso Beso
  80.   I'll Take Romance
  81.   In My Life
  82.   You Don't Have To Say You Love Me
  83.   [Bonus Material]
  84.   All Is Well
  85.   My Grown-Up Christmas List
  86.   O Come O Come Emmanuel
  87.   I Want to Know What Love Is by Suzie McNeil