Thursday, September 30, 2010

"Sean's Space" in a new place

If you've clicked this Web address and haven't seen any new content in almost two months, there's a reason...
For reasons out of my control, I (and my fellow Poughkeepsie Journal bloggers) have had to move over to a new publishing application. With the switch, the individuality of the "Sean's Space" design and ease of use on my end have unfortunately been limited.

It's still the same "Sean's Space" content you've come to know and (hopefully) love, just at a new Web address and without most of the secondary fun (i.e.: title banner, widgets, videos, polls, etc.) of the old blog. I hope you'll head over here anyway.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Yanks take up a Beautiful cause

The defending World Series champs will bring a little HOPE to an Orange County group after tomorrow's game.
As part of the New York Yankees' HOPE Week, the Yanks' players, coaches and staff will play baseball with kids from Beautiful People, a Warwick-based group that works with children with physical and developmental challenges.

Last year, the Bronx Bombers similarly helped make dreams come true for campers from Camp Sundown, located in nearby Craryville.

The Force was with Mickey & Co.

This shot, taken this past weekend, might be the most amazing photograph ever snapped! For this one picture captures in one spot two of my biggest loves in life: "Star Wars" and Walt Disney World. (If the backdrop inside Disney's Hollywood Studios looks familiar, click here and you'll see why.)

Yes, that is George Lucas, creator of the "Star Wars" saga, and R2-D2 posing alongside the Disney gang, draped out in "Star Wars" garb. Over the weekend, Jedi fans and Sith supporters alike converged on Orlando for "Star Wars" Celebration V, an annual convention for everything Lucas-like. From exhibits, autograph signings and entertainment, among other attractions, the annual Celebration gatherings offer geeks fans like me everything they could ask for. Think of it like "Star Wars" Weekends under one roof. Though I've always steered clear of comic-book conventions (although I do enjoy the occasional baseball card show), I would love — l-o-v-e — it if New York ever hosted a similar Celebration.

Anyway ... Lucas made his way to the aforementioned (and nearby) Disney's Hollywood Studios for a few photographs, including the above shot which has now overtaken this shot of Lucas as my favorite of all-time.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

"Judge Judy" rules, case closed!

This is a shameless plug, I admit, but please indulge me for a few seconds...
Just in case you missed this past Sunday's "Our Turn" column, I highly recommend it. Sure, I wrote it, but more importantly, it's about one of my favorite celebrities: Judge Judy, seen here.

Afternoons from 4 to 5 p.m., her honor is appointment television at my house, as I often DVR her show and watch it later at night after work.

More than just another court show, "Judge Judy" is about common sense ... or more precisely, people who don't have it! Between some of the nonsensical cases that are brought before her to the way some litigants act in front of the judge, many times I finish watching the show thinking, Is this where we're headed? Are there really people like that out there?! Not only that, while Judge Judy might be harsh at times, she's always right! If you're an idiot in front of her 10 million daily viewers, she's going to let you know it. In four words: I love Judge Judy.

So, go ahead, check out my column but more importantly, watch her show!

Monday, August 16, 2010

It was a Steve Carrell weekend!

Having already proclaimed my affinity for "The Office," I spent a recent weekend giving one of the show's stars some of my money. Within a 48-hour span two weeks ago, I took in a pair of Steve Carrell's summer films, spanning the best and not-so-best he's got to offer.

The first was "Despicable Me," which had some good moments but kind of left me asking, Why did they make this movie? There was nothing really special about it, though the three little girls — Margo, Edith and Agnes — were totally adorable ... yes, even as CGI characters. Still, the story was sort of lacking and there was really nothing so special that, in my opinion, would have made studio heads say, "We need to make this movie!" Additionally, Steve Carrell's character could have been voiced just as well by any number of actors; there was nothing particularly good (or bad, to be fair) about his performance. I'd give the movie a solid C grade.

But what a difference just 24 hours can make!

The following night, we took in the opening night of "Dinner for Schmucks," which is easily Steve Carrell's best work since "The 40-Year-Old Virgin" back in 2005. I don't even know where to begin: Perhaps that we laughed from the opening credits all the way to the end credits! From rodent taxidermy to supposed mind control, this movie has everything. I was expecting the actual dinner, which is touted in the title, to take up the majority of the screen time, but it's actually a small portion of the movie at the end, but it's totally worth the wait. By far, this was the funniest movie I've seen all year — partially because I actually know someone eerily similar to Steve Carrell's Barry Speck character — and easily earns an A+ in my book.

Of course, these flicks just make me want the new season of "The Office," Steve Carrell's last on the show, to get here sooner!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Two "30 Rock"s down, two to go...

It happened at 1:19 this morning, but I finished watching the second season of "30 Rock."

It took just over a month since I after I finished watching the first season of the NBC hit show for me to complete Season 2. And let me tell you: The show gets better and better. In fact, it makes me regret not watching these earlier episodes the first time they were on the air. In my defense, though, you might remember when "30 Rock" debuted on NBC, a show with a similar premise, "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip," debuted on CBS. I remember trying to watch the latter once or twice when it came out, but it was just a horrible show. Hence, painting with a broad stroke, I lumped "30 Rock" along with the CBS flop and simply dismissed it. Big mistake! Now, I'm paying for that gaffe, as I try to catch up on the first four seasons I've missed before the fifth season starts on Sept. 23rd.

Here's the problem: It's taken me roughly a month each to get through the first two seasons. I'll have to double up my efforts, likely watching two or even three episodes per viewing to catch up before Season 5 begins.

Once more, wish me luck...

Monday, August 9, 2010

And now a word from our sponsor...

This is now my new favorite TV commercial of all-time:

Long a fan of Geico's TV ads, I sang the praises of their cavemen back in 2007 as one of my very first posts here on "Sean's Space." This lil' piggy, though, makes me literally laugh out loud every time I see him!

Maybe it's a nod to my love of animals, that Geico piggy commercial replaces my old favorite TV commercial of all-time, seen here:

Seriously, as if this lil' "pooper" wasn't cute enough, just listen to what he's saying about his dog food — and look at how proud he looks! — and try to tell me this isn't one of the best ads ever.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Marky leaves his Mark on H-wood Blvd.

Caught up in all the Chelsea-mania last week, somehow I missed this one...

Yes, that is Mark Wahlberg, accepting his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on July 29; his star is located at 6259 Hollywood Boulevard. Back in early 1992, I remember seeing him — then known as Marky Mark — as he came to Poughkeepsie on tour with his Funky Bunch (that's $72 I'll never see again!) and now he's getting a star on Hollwood Blvd.?! Not only is he the brother of New Kids On The Block member Donnie Wahlberg, but Mark was also an original member of the New Kids before leaving the group because he wanted more of an urban, street sound.

Last week was a busy one in Tinseltown for the acting Wahlberg brothers.

A day before Mark's ceremony, Donnie took part in this panel discussion with co-star Tom Selleck during a press tour for "Blue Bloods," their new cop drama set to debut on CBS this fall.

Prez gives away auto before daughter

And I thought I hit the celebrity jackpot in Rhinebeck last weekend prior to Chelsea's wedding!
Well, turns out my 10-year-old buddy Andrew outdid me, hitting the mother load leading up to Chelsea Clinton's wedding. His "get?" Oh, just the father of the bride ... and a former president of the United States!

Click the video and watch Andrew being interviewed by Fox News after he got the John Hancock of Bill Clinton. Really, though, look at Andrew ... who can say "no" to that face?!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Brand gives "Arthur" one Moore try

Ever the celebrity hunter, "someone I know" came up with this latest gem earlier this week...
That's actor/comedian Russell Brand (center) on the set of the remake of the 1981 film "Arthur" outside Grand Central Terminal.

The movie, set to be released next year, also reportedly stars Jennifer Garner and Nick Nolte. Brand will star as the title character first played by Dudley Moore.

Recording tunes is fair with Mayer

It's a musical math equation. Follow me here:
John Mayer > The Doobie Brothers

If you remember this classic "What's Happening!!" episode, you'll remember the Doobies got all mad when Rerun was caught bootlegging their concert with that bulky 1978 tape recorder under his trenchcoat.

Well, Mr. Mayer takes a more fan-friendly approach to recording his performances.
Check out my ticket to last night's John Mayer/Train concert in Sullivan County. Now look two lines behind John's name: Audio OK. How cool is that?!

So, of course, I took advantage of John's generosity!

Always the quick thinker, I set my cell phone to RECORD, placed it with the microphone facing the stage and went on to record the next 90 minutes or so of the concert. Thanks, John Mayer! Between hits like "Heartbreak Warfare" and "Waiting On The World To Change" — not to mention a really good cover of Prince's "Raspberry Beret" — I got 'em all on my phone. Considering how far we were from the stage, though, and the quality of the sound reproduction, the actual music sounds like it was recorded by Rerun back in '78.

Still, it was pretty cool that when many musicians fight against file-sharing when it comes to their songs, John Mayer is good enough to let fans leave his shows with a free souvenir.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Where everybody knows Chelsea's name

Hey, TMZ ... are you ready for me???
I just finished my first shift as a celebrity photog/reporter, covering "the wedding of the year," the union of former First Daughter Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky in Rhinebeck.

My biggest celebrity "get" of the day: former "Cheers" star Ted Danson and his Academy Award-winning wife, Mary Steenburgen, who I've been a fan of since I first saw her in Ron Howard's 1989 comedy, "Parenthood."

Yes, after almost being trampled by media from all over the world as we walked down the street with the former Sam Malone and the mother from "Elf" (seen here), I was able to snap the picture above when they spoke to us before the ceremony.

But that was only part of the fun we had in Rhinebeck!

After that, I braved the hundred or so spectators (media and locals alike) surrounding Gigi Trattoria — yes, the very restaurant where former President Bill Clinton ate yesterday — where actress Kate Capshaw dined earlier, and where designer Vera Wang and former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright were eating ... presumably at separate tables, with separate checks. Having soon tired of the pack mentality, I wandered into the parking lot, where Vera, who designed Chelsea's dress, soon followed. Looking for her car, she turned around and I was able to snap this picture. (Feel free to click here to see more of my pics from the day, which I diligently tweeted as part of the Poughkeepsie Journal's coverage.)

And if you thought the media were stalking the Clintons and their guests, then think of me as stalking the stalkers. (That's with tongue firmly planted in cheek, btw.)

Since my main assignment was to write about the media coverage on the big day, I took in all the sights and sounds on Route 9 — everything from this "Insider" reporter outside Gigi's, as well as watching "Entertainment Tonight's" Diane Dimond tape her pieces across from the Beekman Arms, to talking to "Extra" special correspondent Lauren Sivan for tomorrow's story; I even quoted Ted and Mary in my story. (How many chances does a sports reporter get to talk to such famous thespians?! I'll tell you: not many.)

Not that it was all roses, as I got blown off by a certain network news correspondent, whose name and show will not be mentioned here, when I asked her for a quick comment about covering the wedding.
Indeed, as this picture demonstrates, the wedding was at least the story of the summer here in the Hudson Valley.

That being said, I can't imagine what it's like in L.A., chasing down stars like Lindsay Lohan and Angelina Jolie. But for at least one day in our backyard, I had a fun time!

Friday, July 9, 2010

One "30 Rock" down, three to go...

Three years after it aired on NBC, I've just now finished watching the first season of the hit show "30 Rock."

Having already admitted I'm a big Tina Fey fan, I had just never been able to get into the show the first time around. After investing 30 minutes each Thursday night to NBC's "The Office," I just couldn't invest another half-hour of my life to Liz Lemon and the gang, ya know ... 'cause I just have so much going on in this hectic life of mine! (Note the sarcasm) Sure, I'd tried renting the first season on DVD, only to pay for it and never watch it. Only when I recently bought my Playstation 3 and was able to stream the show to my TV through Netflix did I start to watch the reruns on my time.

And, just as expected, "30 Rock" is a great show! Between the witty, urbane writing and the fine acting of Tina, among others, it's becoming one of my favorites.

With the fall TV season starting soon, my goal is to watch the other three seasons of the show before the new episodes premiere. Wish me luck!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

He's a "Blue" Kid On The Block

Prior to both New Kids On The Block concerts last weekend, we got a preview of the new TV season.
The big screens at Radio City Music Hall displayed the above preview of CBS' new police drama, "Blue Bloods," starring none other than New Kid Donnie Wahlberg, among others.

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, Donnie will portray New York City cop Danny Reagan in "Blue Bloods," airing Fridays on CBS this fall.

From the preview, we learn that Donnie plays an NYPD detective, the son of the police chief played by Tom Selleck. The Reagan family also features a younger son who's new to the force, as well as a daughter who's an assistant district attorney.

The previews got a good response prior to each NKOTB show (of course!), and it'll be fun to watch a New Kid on TV each week!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

New Kids next to 30 Rock

Talk about going out with a bang!!!
As if meeting my favorite group of all-time wasn't cool enough, I was lucky enough to be in the audience for the New Kids On The Block's final two shows of their "Casi-No Tour" at Radio City Music Hall last weekend.

Unable to attend the first of their final three shows, I made sure to snag tickets for the last two.

Originally scheduled back in January as the New Kids' lone Radio City Music Hall show — this was their first time at the famed theater, btw — Friday's show turned out to be the penultimate show of their brief tour, one of only 16 concerts that Joe McIntyre, Jonathan Knight, Danny Wood, Donnie Wahlberg and Jordan Knight performed in all of 2010. With so few dates, and a few so close to home, I had to be there. As a fan of the guys' since 1988, I was glad I was there!

The music was amazing (as always). The ambiance of seeing them in the 78-year theater was great. And each night was an event, not simply a concert.
During Friday's show, for example, the guys even presented the Komen Foundation with a check for $110,000, which they raised from all their work supporting breast cancer research since they got back together.

From the opening lyrics of "Single" straight through to the final bows after "Hangin' Tough," you could tell the New Kids appreciated the Big Apple crowd, even getting visibly emotional when talking about what it meant to play Radio City some 20-plus years after they first hit it big. You could tell the moment meant even more since it was the culmination of their comeback. As a fan for more than two decades, it was great to see them enjoy the moment and share it with all of us.

As big of an event as Friday was, Saturday's tour finale was even more eventful.
As memorialized in this publicity shot released by the New Kids, the guys welcomed the Backstreet Boys to the stage for two songs. Though never a BSB fan — and there were many fans sitting around me — I liked hearing the guests thank the New Kids for paving the way for groups like them.
Between the famous venue, the historic nature of the shows and (oh, yeah!) the music, it was a great weekend in the Big Apple, well worth the train rides via Metro-North.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Putting the "Toy" in "Toy Story 3"

Just in case this past weekend wasn't enough fun and games, here's another example of the great time I had.

After meeting the New Kids On The Block, I had a few hours to kill and walked downtown to Times Square. Toys R Us is always a popular stop for me — I peruse the "Star Wars" action figures there ... so sue me! — but this caught my eye even before I got to that second floor. You (yes, you!) can be a "Toy Story 3" toy at the Times Square store by simply stopping by and standing inside the life-size action figure box. Big enough for adults to fit inside (though I didn't), the packaging is an exact replica of the box that the actual action figures come in.

Being that the movie came out the same day I was at the store, there was a definite Buzz (Lightyear) about the chance to get your picture taken here.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

A new chance to meet the New Kids

Meeting your favorite singers of all-time, who you've listened to for years, never gets old. Believe me!This weekend, before my first of two New Kids On The Block concerts at Radio City Music Hall, I was one of a few lucky fans who got to greet the New Kids as they entered the building.

You can have $375 pre-show meet-and-greet packages with the New Kids, but I find it much more satisfying to meet the guys — for the uninitiated, that's Jordan Knight, Jon Knight, Joe(y) McIntyre, Danny Wood and Donnie Wahlberg — for free on my own.

Thanks to dedication and patience, a couple dozen of us fans were outside Radio City when the New Kids arrived for Friday's performance — Joe, Danny and Donnie first, as seen above...

...followed by the Knight brothers just a few minutes later.

Ever gracious, the New Kids were kind enough to spend a few seconds with their dedicated fans. And we appreciate it!

Look, I know it's never going to get better than my first meeting with the New Kids, so any chance to see the guys, like back in January, is a bonus. I look at it as the payoff for "Hangin' Tough" with the New Kids since 1988!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Hearing the "Glory" in their "Voices"

Just got back from seeing Highland's favorite singing siblings, the Voices of Glory.

The Coles (seen here from left, Michael, Nadia and Avery) performed their second show in Dutchess County in less than 24 hours, singing at the New Hackensack Reformed Church in the Town of Wappinger; they sang in Rhinebeck last night. The shows were part of the Rhinebeck Choral Club's 65th anniversary celebration, and the Voices of Glory were the club's guest artists. The Voices of Glory, who were competing on NBC's hit show "America's Got Talent" this time last year, proved why they finished fifth overall out of some 100,000 acts that auditioned for the competition.

Having interviewed the Voices of Glory several times over the past year, including earlier in the week for a story promoting their local appearances, I'd never seen the trio sing in person. Sure, I'd watched them perform on "AGT" last summer, but seeing them in person was a totally different experience.

Between belting out Whitney Houston's "Greatest Love of All" to a stirring rendition of "God Bless America," among others, each of the singers displayed their powerful voices, which filled the room.
Earlier in the week, Nadia told me of all the songs the group performs, "Greatest Love of All" is her favorite.

"I just enjoy that song," she said. "It's telling people never to give up, and that you have to love yourself and don't let anyone else bat you down."

Listening to the Rhinebeck Choral Club sing uplifting tunes — everything from John Lennon's "Imagine" to "The Rainbow Connection" — a treat enough. Add in the inspirational Voices of Glory, and we had a great afternoon for a great cause, as today's performance (as was last night's in Rhinebeck) benefited the Cole family.

With the Coles traveling the country, pursuing their careers and soon to release their debut CD, it was great to take in one of their appearances and see firsthand how Michael, Avery and Nadia touch so many of the people for whom they sing.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Raising their "Voices" for "Glory"

Of all places, I found this flyer in the break room here at the Poughkeepsie Journal today.

In case you missed my earlier post, Highland's Voices of Glory will sing at a pair of local performances this weekend. The shows — Saturday's is in Rhinebeck, Sunday's is in Wappingers Falls — will mark the first time the group (17-year-old Michael Cole, 14-year-old Avery Cole and 10-year-old Nadia Cole) has been back in the Hudson Valley since March. The shows are part of the Rhinebeck Choral Club's 65th anniversary celebration; they will also serve as benefits for the for Cole family, which has moved to Branson, Mo., to pursue their singing careers. The Voices of Glory, you might remember, placed fifth overall in last season's edition of the NBC show "America's Got Talent."

I spoke with the Cole siblings earlier this week, and they were thrilled to come back to the Hudson Valley.

"They're still our No. 1 supporters," Michael told me. "I just can't wait to get back."
Check out tomorrow's edition of the Poughkeepsie Journal or our website to read my full story on the Coles and this weekend's upcoming performances.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Party like a Rock (Band 2) star

If I look tired these days, there's a reason: I'm a rock star!

After years of resisting, I entered the video-gaming realm over the weekend and bought my first system since the late '90s, when I bought the original Sony Playstation.

Making up for lost time, I splurged and treated myself to the deluxe "Rock Band 2" bundle, complete with a wireless guitar, wireless drum kit, a microphone and ... oh, yeah, the actual video game.Let me just tell you, I cannot put this thing down! Wake up in the morning, I can play music. Late at night before bed, I can make even more music. This thing is soooo addictive!

Sure, the game has been out for almost two years, but it's still new to me, and I'm lovin' it! Admittedly, the whole "Rock Band" phenomenon was one of the main catalysts for me shelling out the money for a new gaming system — not to mention the prospect of buying "The Beatles: Rock Band" in the coming days — and so far, it looks like it was definitely money well spent.

I might even go on tour — just me, my "Rock Band 2" game, guitar, mic and drums!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Celts vs. Lakers brings out hit-makers

Need some music to get you pumped for the NBA Finals? One of my favorite singers has got ya covered!

Boston native Donnie Wahlberg, one of the leaders of my fav group of all-time (New Kids On The Block) and a devout Celtics fan — he's even in the front row of Game 1 tonight in L.A. — has just released his "Lakers vs. Celtics Mixtape," a collection of music to get you ready for tip-off.

From some of his own music to some tunes from his protégés, Donnie's released 49 minutes, 59 seconds of free jams to accompany what he hopes will be a Celtics series win. You can just click here to download the mixtape.

Can't get enough of D-Dub (as he likes to call himself)? Come fall, you can catch Donnie every Friday night at 10 p.m. as a police officer on "Blue Bloods," a new drama set to begin airing on CBS, which released this promo picture. On the new series, Donnie plays a cop — it's a familiar role for him — and he'll star alongside Tom Selleck on the show, which is set in New York City. Next July, he'll star in "Zookeeper," a movie shot recently in Boston's Franklin Zoo, in which he'll star with Kevin James and Rosario Dawson; stars like Adam Sandler, Sylvester Stallone and Jon Favreau will lend their voice talents to "Zookeeper."

Until then, enjoy Donnie's free hoops tunes!

(PS: Am I the only one who remembers making actual mix tapes? Ya know, those cassette tapes that you'd spend hours creating on your cool stereo, adding a song from this CD and another from that CD and on and on 'til you had all the best songs on one tape. Ah, the good ol' days! Of course, iTunes and CD burners made those obsolete and now Donnie's made even those CDs passé with his downloadable "mixtape.")

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Must've been hard being Half-Pint

Let me just say it: I would have died growing up in olden times — no doubt about it.

Having gone just a couple hours without power this morning, I can't imagine how the Ingalls clan survived back in the "Little House on the Prairie" days. With nothing but a Walkman that picked up AM radio to "entertain" me — and I use that term very loosely — this morning, I was all but lost without my 21st-Century comforts. After some 90 minutes, I had to leave the house. God only knows how Ma and Pa Ingalls, let alone Mary, Laura and Carrie made it through those rough days in Walnut Grove lo those many year ago.

With that short lack of electricity this morn, I had no TV, no DVD player, no Playstation 3, no phone ... you see where I'm going with this. I can't imagine what it must've been like living during the "Prairie" days.

I used to have a joke that went like this: "Oh, this is my favorite episode of 'Little House on the Prairie' ... the one where the Ingalls endure some kind of hardship!" For me, just living in the olden days would have been hardship enough.

Friday, May 28, 2010

"What'choo talkin' 'bout, Willis?!"

Just got the sad news that Gary Coleman passed away this afternoon at the age of 42.

Even before he played the iconic character of Arnold Jackson on the '80s hit sit-com "Diff'rent Strokes," I became a fan of his work on a 1979 TV movie called "The Kid From Left Field," in which he played the young son of a San Diego Padres player (portrayed by Robert Guillaume) who eventually takes over the managerial duties of the team, leading them to success on the field and in the standings. It was one of the roles — along with those big, adorable cheeks — that springboarded him to stardom. Between guest appearances on shows like "Good Times," "The Facts of Life" and one of my personal favorites, "Silver Spoons," Gary was seemingly everywhere on the TV dial when I was a kid.

Of course, playing Arnold is the role for which he'll always be most memorably known. Perhaps you've heard of Arnold's catch phrase? A little something goes like this...Never gets old, does it? Some three decades after it was first uttered, it's still as funny as the first time we heard it.

"Diff'rent Strokes" was must-see TV in my house every week when I was a kid.

One of my favorite "Diff'rent Strokes" episodes was the classic when, to impress the girl that he and Dudley both liked, he dressed like another '80s icon, Mr. T, when the Drummonds let NBC tape an espisode of "The A-Team" in their Park Ave. penthouse. Then there was the one when Muhammad Ali meets Arnold. And, of course, there was the "very special episode" when Arnold met First Lady Nancy Reagan during the "Just Say No" days. All the "Diff'rent Strokes" success spawned "The Gary Coleman Show," a Saturday morning cartoon that aired on NBC during the 1982-83 TV season, in which Gary played (ironically) an angel.

For all the problems (financial and the like) in his later years, Gary Coleman really did live a hard life, requiring two kidney transplants when he was a kid and daily kidney dialysis.

Like the theme song said, "Everybody's got a special kind of story/Everybody finds a way to shine," and Gary did indeed have a special story and he still found a way to shine.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Readers: Crystal Bowersox wins "Idol"

More than 1,600 "Sean's Space" readers have christened Crystal Bowersox as the Season 9 "American Idol" champion!
For the past month-and-a-half, I'd been running a poll asking "Idol" fans to vote for their favorite contender; perhaps you've seen it in the right sidebar here (right above me and the New Kids On The Block). Since Day One, Crystal has been the clear favorite, easily earning more than half the votes.

These results, however, are clearly unscientific and not necessarily a representation of who will win the title later tonight.

Two seasons ago, for example, "Sean's Space" readers correctly predicted that rocker David Cook would beat teeny-bopper David Archuleta by garnerind almost twice as many votes as his younger runner-up. (Cook, as it would turn out, later came to Poughkeepsie, where I got to meet and interview him.) That's the good news when it comes to "Sean's Space" readers choosing the "American Idol" winner.

Almost 3,300 fans voted in last year's poll, with differing results, however.

Seemingly everyone's favorite to take the title, Adam Lambert, overwhelmingly won my "Idol" poll, receiving more than 2,200 of the votes. Of course, as luck would have it, who won the championship? Yes, Kris Allen! (Though in another ironic twist, Adam is coming to town, and we're working on an interview with him.)

So, what have we learned from all this?

While Crystal is the winner in the unofficial "Sean's Space" tally, Lee DeWyze might very well walk away with the "Idol" crown and the $1 million contract. We'll all have to wait an hour until the season finale begins. Stay tuned...

Friday, May 14, 2010

New Kids on cruise control

So, my favorite group of all-time has again hit the high seas.
Yes, the New Kids On The Block have just left the dock for their second annual, three-day Caribbean cruise out of Miami, following last night's pre-cruise concert there.

Last year's jaunt on the sea offered fans concerts and even a "Family Feud"-style game show with the New Kids — that's Donnie Wahlberg, Danny Wood, Jonathan Knight, Jordan Knight and Joe McIntyre — and gave them more of a chance to meet the guys.Videos and stories from last year's cruise made the event seem like a blast, though tickets for each were way out of my price range, let alone the airfare to South Beach.

But it's all good: Each of the times I've met the New Kids on dry land — both here and here — have come for free, so I'm hoping that streak continues.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

YOU can ask Adam Lambert a question!

We at the Poughkeepsie Journal are going to interview Adam Lambert, and we're letting his fans in on the action!

Fellow Journal reporter John Barry is working on setting up the phone interview with the "American Idol" runner-up, and I'm going to supply him with one question for Adam — one that I'm asking you, Adam's fans, to supply! (Adam is coming to town next month for the annual K-Fest concert.) Just as I did before when I interviewed the Jonas Brothers, "American Idol" champs David Cook and Taylor Hicks, "Idol" finalists Kellie Pickler, Clay Aiken and Blake Lewis, as well as "Celebrity Apprentice" star and Posion frontman Bret Michaels, I'm giving you a chance to ask Adam a question when we interview to him! It's my way of bringing fans closer to their favorite celebrities.

Now, all you've got to do is e-mail your first name, your hometown and your question for Adam to me at by May 25. (Please do not post your questions in the comment section below, because they won't be read, published or counted!)

I'll pick the best one (and only one) out of all the questions I receive and ask it to Adam we speak to him. Then, I'll post his answer to your question right here at "Sean's Space."

Be creative! Ask the Adam a question that no one else has ever asked him. Then, check back here to see if he answered your question!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

NKOTB doubles down on tour

The New Kids On The Block are back!
Yup, my favorite group of all-time kick off their "CasiNo Tour" tomorrow night in Las Vegas, the first of just 16 shows they'll have this year. If their last two times out — both their 2008 reunion tour and last year's summer tour — are any indication, this "non-tour" is going to be amazing!

And tomorrow's show at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas is just the beginning.

The guys — that's Donnie Wahlberg, Jordan Knight, Jonathan Knight, Joey McIntyre and Danny Wood — are playing mostly arenas inside casinos, mostly on the weekends from now through mid-June. (Hence the "CasiNo Tour" moniker.) But ... the New Kids end their string of shows June 17-19 at Radio City Music Hall in New York City; a handful of tickets remain for only that first RCMH concert.

Until then, though, they'll be "Hangin' Tough" through the "Summertime," taking things "Step By Step!"