Posts Tagged ‘“American Idol”’

Keith Urban Sells Record 22,000 Guitars On HSN

May 21, 2014

Beating his own record, no pun intended, Grammy winner and “American Idol” judge Keith Urban returned to HSN Sunday to sell more than 22,000 guitars, the home shopping network said Wednesday.

The too-cute country music star, who is married to actress Nicole Kidman, bested his previous record of 20,000 guitars. That mark was set during his sellout debut on HSN last November.

You gotta love Urban and Kidman. We recently read an interview with Kidman, and she said she often travels on the road with Urban. One of their favorite fast-food spots is Wendy’s. Can you imagine walking into a Wendy’s and seeing those two!

Keith Urban on HSN

Keith Urban on HSN

Most recently on HSN, Urban was hawking his limited edition “Light The Fuse” and “Phoenix” Urban guitar packages.

Urban introduced his “Light The Fuse” guitar series on Sunday as part of his Urban line of guitars.

“In true Keith fashion, the music mega star took a moment from his record-setting day for a surprise impromptu jam session with adoring fan Tori Fuson at HSN’s studios,” HSN said in a press release. “The two posed for photos and Keith ended the session by autographing her Urban guitar.”

Oy! Joy Mangano, president of HSN affiliate Ingenious Designs, chimed in.

“Keith’s ability to inspire people through music and encourage them to find their own song is simply amazing,” Mangano said in a canned statement. “I am thrilled to congratulate Keith on yet another tremendous appearance on HSN and am excited to work with him on the next phase of this incredible musical journey.”

The “Light The Fuse” limited edition series was inspired by Urban’s chart-topping album “FUSE” and “Light The Fuse” tour, which kicked off last year.

The “Light The Fuse” Collection features two versions of the “Light The Fuse” guitar — all wood electric or acoustic-electric — and comes in five gorgeous flame maple burst color ways – Brazilian, Ebony, Brazilian Blonde, Cherry Red and Teal Burst.

It is part of a 21-piece set that includes a powerful 15 watt amplifier; extra set of comfort coated strings; carrying case; signature guitar picks; and a double-lesson DVD.

The DVD features Urban personally walking you through one-on-one lessons. The complete package, with double-lesson DVD, is part of his mission to bring music into the lives of others and “inspire and help you to discover the creativity that will set you on your musical journey.”

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‘American Idol’ Judge Randy Jackson Returns To HSN To Rock Guitars

December 5, 2012

“American Idol” judge and Grammy Award-winning producer Randy “Dog” Jackson has already been on HSN this year pitching a line of watches. The home shopping network said Tuesday that he will be back this month selling guitars.

The big debut of the “Randy Jackson Diamond Edition Guitar Collection” is Dec. 16. The package supposedly combines numbered, limited edition high-quality guitars with one-on-one lessons.

“Get everything you need to learn to play, and feel like a rock star with his exclusive designer style,” or so the HSN press release said.

“I’ve created my premier Diamond Edition collection to give HSN customers the opportunity to embrace music the way I did as a child,” Jackson said in a canned statement, “I designed these exclusive guitar packages so everyone can learn, play and feel like rock stars!”

Randy Jackson

Randy Jackson

Jackson is a 20-year music industry veteran who has produced and performed with some of the world’s hottest artists.

“Passionate about guitars since picking up his first one at the age of 13, Randy has since built an impressive personal collection of guitars and believes music is the universal language that brings people together,” HSN said.

And according to Jackson, “HSN is the perfect place to launch my limited edition guitars. HSN’s connection to the entertainment industry and their passion for storytelling makes it the right platform for me to share my inspiration behind this new launch.”

Jeez, stop buttering up HSN management, Randy.

HSN’s chief merchandising officer, Anne Martin-Vachon, also chimed in.

“We are excited that Randy is returning to HSN with this limited edition, numbered guitar collection,” she said in her canned statement. “Randy is a passionate musician and icon in the music industry. This collection will give the HSN customer a chance to learn from the best and play like a star.”

The Diamond Edition guitar package includes the choice of either a solid body electric or an acoustic electric guitar that includes an instructional DVD featuring Jackson and guitar expert Scott Goldbaum, a 15W Amp, custom case, guitar strap, chord chart poster, polishing cloth, designer picks, certificate of authenticity and more, all for under $300.

And even Joy Mangano got into the act here.

“It was an extreme honor to work with Randy on this collection,” said Mangano, president of Ingenious Designs and HSN executive vice president. “Randy has detail for detail created what I consider to be one of the finest guitar collections. I’m so excited for everyone to be able to play such quality guitars.”

And Jackson is also returning to HSN with his Timepieces by Randy Jackson watch collection, with new styles for the holiday season. The custom designed watches range in price from $95 to $395, with limited edition pieces up to $3,500.

The Randy Jackson Guitar Collection launches on HSN on Sunday, December 16, as a TS. Jackson will continues his visit Dec. 17 at 4 p.m. and 11 p.m. with new additions to the Timepieces by Randy Jackson collection.

HSN’s Become A Haven For ‘American Idol’ Judges, Latest Mariah Carey

July 29, 2012

Congrats to songbird Mariah Carey on her new gig as a judge on “American Idol.”

Well, now three “American Idol” judges have been HSN vendors.

Jennifer Lopez was on the No. 2 home shopping network selling perfume.

Randy Jackson was on last week selling watches.

And Carey has been on several times selling jewelry and shoes, with one of her rather idiosyncratic appearances going viral.

Van Totaled, Chatting Up ‘Jerseylicious’ Tracy DiMarco, Robert Lee Morris Meet-And-Greet, Back At The Spotted Donkey, Max Gone, Fall In Sheboygan: The Second Anniversary Of Our Layoff

January 27, 2011

Recently we’ve had dealings with some of the folk we knew when we covered the cable TV industry — before we were laid off exactly two years ago today.

We have to chuckle to ourselves when they say, “Oh, Linda Moss. Where have you been?”

We want to answer back, in our best Jersey accent, “Yo, where have you been?”

This summer our lovely BFF Ann McGettigan (left) and The Homeshoppingista visited QVC and rubbed shoulders with famed jewelry designer Robert Lee Morris (did we run this photo large enough?)

Here’s where we’ve been since Jan. 26, 2009:

• Writing 850 blogs for this site, The Homeshoppingista, which some say has become a must-read for the home shopping industry — and sometimes a thorn in the side of QVC, HSN and ShopNBC.

• Writing about New Jersey-related TV programming, such as “Jerseylicious,” and cable-vs.-programmers spats in the Garden State for NewJerseyNewsroom.com.

The Homeshoppingista interviewing Tracy DiMarco of Jerseylicious

• Writing about health care and telecommunications for a fantastic website on public policy, NJSpotlight.com, run by two of our former colleagues at The Herald-News, Lee Keough and Tom Johnson.

• Writing blogs on dementia for a website.

• Writing and breaking stories for TVNewsCheck.com, which is run by a great newspaperman and gent, Harry Jessell.

• Writing market profiles for Harry’s NetNewsCheck.com, which is run by my former colleague Eric Smith, another smart and talented – and blessedly un-anal — editor.

• Crafting blogs for nearly a dozen websites, with most of those pertaining to traumatic brain injury, for a chap, Gordon Johnson, we went to Medill (as in J-school) with. But he was smart, he became a lawyer. “American Idol” candidate Chris Medina got across the heartbreak of TBI lasr night when he told the story of his now-wheelchair bound fiancee.

• Doing a bit of volunteer work for the corporate public relations department of the Saint Barnabas Health Care System, New Jersey’s largest hospital chain, as well as its affiliate, Clara Maass Medical Center.

• Going on dates, with more men in the past two years than we had in the prior 10, when we were working 10 to 12 hours a day, and some weekends and vacations.

• Learning how to use a Mac.

• Traveling to Chicago for a TBI conference for lawyers.

• Going to Wisconsin to see a brain injury survivor, Lethan Candlish, perform a remarkable one-man show about his recovery. Lethan is a master storyteller.

TBI storyteller Lethan Candlish

We must say, it’s a breath of fresh air to in many cases be interviewing and writing for people who don’t have a clue who John Malone or Brian Roberts is. Malone, oh non-cable people, is head of Liberty Media, which owns QVC.

You see, the cable TV industry is a close-knit cabal. That has its pluses and negatives. Some cable folk – and we adore many of them — only see the world through the prism of that industry, as if nothing exists outside it. Maybe it’s just natural for people in an industry to have such tunnel vision.

A year ago we blogged about the first anniversary of our layoff today. The past year has had a lot of ups and downs, personally.

Pet lovers will get this, but it was traumatic when our parents had to put down their dog of more than a dozen years, the min pin Max. Our father many a time threatened to kill that mutt, when he would jump on the table and run off with food, etc. But we were all in the vet’s office, and all cried, when Max was put to sleep.

Our nephew Evan (who told us to buckle up), our dad and niece Sydney at the Tropicana in Atlantic City, seven months before our Columbus Day accident

Just weeks later our dad tried to cheer everyone up by taking us to Atlantic City for Columbus Day weekend. On the way back on the Garden State Parkway my sister’s van – with my parents, sister, brother-in-law, niece, nephew and us in it – was T-boned by a car that came out of nowhere and flew across several lanes of traffic to crash into us.

We can still remember the shock when we were hit, and had no idea what was happening.

Luckily, we all had our seatbelts on (after our 6-year-old nephew Evan had reminded us to buckle up). But the other car hit the side of the van right next to our dad. The jaws of life got him out, but he fractured several vertebrae. He was in and out of the hospital so many times than we lost count, for both his back and his rotator cuff. He was taken by ambulance to the ER many times.

It truly is a miracle that we weren’t killed. Unfortunately our dad was hurt, but no one else was.

At Thanksgiving dinner, our dad always would say grace. This year, he said something like, “Thank you, oh Lord, for our health. Sort of.”

And we all laughed. Our father is nothing if not honest.

But there was plenty of good during the past year. After more than two years away from our beloved Arizona, we finally returned in December, with a guy. Thanks BJ!

It’s much better watching the sunset in Cave Creek, sucking down a prickly pear margarita at the Spotted Donkey Cantina, when you are sharing it with someone. We also enjoyed huckleberry margaritas, and the famous “Big Ass Burger,” at the Roaring Fork.

Watching the sunset from the patio of the Spotted Donkey Cantina, while sipping a prickly pear margarita, is glorious

We and our bud Ann McGettigan got to meet famed jewelry designer Robert Lee Morris when we visited QVC this summer.

And we’ve enjoyed the writing we’ve done during the past year, as we’ve become mini-experts on topics such as TBI, concussions, Obama’s health reform, Alzheimer’s, heparin, malpractice, nursing and plane crashes.

Our clips are now links to dozens of stories that we’ve written since being shoved out the door at Multichannel News. And there is a light at the end of the tunnel for us. More on that later.

And we still have this quote from Louis L’Amour on our bulletin board: “There will come a time when you believe everything is finished. Yet that will be the beginning.”

You were right, Louie.

Former ‘American Idol’ Judge Paula Abdul Gets Teary Over Fan Call On HSN

December 14, 2009

“American Idol” alum Paula Abdul got choked up and teary Sunday night during her appearance on HSN to sell her “Forever Your Girl” jewelry line.

The petite singer’s fans were calling in to her in force, offering testimonials about her star-themed jewelry. But many of the women went on to laud Abdul for being such as inspiration to them.

We heard at least a half dozen women tell Abdul “I love you.” Who knew she had such rabid fans.

The caller that choked up Abdul was Melissa, who was buying the singer’s jewelry to save for her 2-year-old granddaughter. Melissa said she used to tune in to “American Idol” to see what jewelry Abdul was wearing from her HSN line.

“I won’t watch ‘Idol’ anymore without you,” Melissa said during her call. “Paula, you and eveything you do highlights our life. We can hear your voice and you put a smile on our face because you’re always so happy and wonderful.”

HSN host Callie Northagen said that the call choked her up, and she reached over to Abdul, who looked emotional as well. The camera then stayed on Northhagen, and there was a break for a promo.

When the show resumed, Abdul said, “During the break, I was in tears.” She had to fix up her eye makeup.

Here’s the video of Abdul and Melissa’s call.

‘Idol’ Paula Abdul Is Back On HSN, But What’s Up With Actress And Tabloid Star Tori Spelling?

December 13, 2009

Singer and “Amercian Idol” alum Paula Abdul is back on HSN this weekend after her visit in October was abruptly canceled, but what’s happening with Tori Spelling?

Spelling is apparently not listed for any appearances in December on the home shopping network, where her fashion jewelry collection is sold.

Both Abdul and Spelling were scheduled to appear on HSN the same weekend in mid-October, but their appearances were both scotched. HSN viewers who called customer service to find out what happened to the two stars weren’t given an explanation of the cancellations.

Now, two months later, Abdul is finally back on HSN this weekend with her “Forever Your Girl” jewelry line. But there’s no word on when Spelling will return.

At the time Spelling was absent, the tabloids were having a field day reporting that she was under 100 pounds and had been hospitalized.

The blonde, who is very gracious and down-to-earth on the air, has a reality show with her husband Dean McDermott on Oxygen, “Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood.”

Paula Abdul Is Selling The ‘Star’ Bracelet She Wore On ‘American Idol’ On HSN, Says She Gifted A ‘Variety’ Exec With Some Of Her Jewelry

December 12, 2009

After an unexplained cancellation of a visit this fall, former “American Idol” judge and singer Paula Abdul was on HSN Saturday to celebrate the first anniversary of her jewelry line, Forever Your Girl.

And she told a juicy tidbit about an exec at Variety, the sister publication of the trade magazine where we used to work.

Abdul was showing off a tricolor knot ring and matching bracelet that have pave stones. Abdul said that she recently attended an event honoring famed director Steven Spielberg, and she wore both those tricolor pieces. Abdul was sitting “next to the woman who runs Variety,” and the woman started raving about the jewelry, according to the singer.

Abdul took the ring and bracelet off and gave them to the unnamed Variety honcho. “She was just so happy,” Abdul said.

“We haven’t seen Paula since July,” HSN host Marlo Smith told viewers. She failed to mention that Abdul had been on HSN’s program schedule in October, but that appearance was canceled without explanation.

Abdul’s “Reach for the Stars” pave bracelet and ring, which she wore during “American Idol” telecasts, were both on clearance for $10 each.

Abdul says she gets stopped in the street when she wears that jewelry. “Everyone says, ‘That’s the ‘American Idol’ bracelet,'” Abdul said.

The singer also said she wore several of her various bracelets stacked at the recent American Music Awards.

We were eyeing Abdul’s nail polish, which was gold with sparkles. It was a little over the top, which Abdul later admitted on-air.

“Forgive my nail polish, I think it’s a little much,” Abdul told viewers, adding later on, “My nails are ridiculous.”

Girlfriend, we love you for being honest.

Paula Abdul Set To Return To HSN Dec. 12 and 13 After October Cancellation, No Word About When No-Show Tori Spelling Will Be Back

December 1, 2009

Paula Abdul HSN ring

Two months after her last appearance on HSN was cancelled without explanation, former “American Idol” host Paula Abdul is returning.

Abdul is scheduled to appear on HSN Dec. 12 and 13 to sell her Forever Your Girl line of fashion jewelry, which is marking its first anniversary.

Back in October, Columbus Day weekend, the singer was listed in HSN’s online and print program guides to do jewelry shows for two days. But she never appeared.

Around that same time, actress Tori Spelling was also scheduled to be on HSN for her costume jewelry line, and those shows were also pulled without explanation. Curious and disappointed viewers were speculating that the no-show was due to Spellings ill health or her rumored marital woes.

So far we did not see Spelling listed for any return to HSN.

Spelling and her husband Dean McDermott are the star’s of Oxygen’s reality show, ‘Tori and Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood.”

QVC, HSN and ShopNBC Should Give Thanks For Home Shopping’s Sea Change: They’ve Attracted Luxury Brands Like Gucci, Badgley Mischka And Stephen Dweck

November 26, 2009

QVC CEO Mike George

We thought we were seeing things a few days ago when we checked ShopNBC’s Web site and saw that it was selling dozens of Gucci watches. What happened, did they fall off a truck? Why was Gucci, a premier luxury brand, being sold on a home shopping network?

Then back in October, we couldn’t believe it when a sharp-eyed poster on QVC’s jewelry forum said that upscale jewelry designer Stephen Dweck, whose chunky gemstone masterpieces are featured in Neiman Marcus, was on the No. 1 home shopping network’s schedule. THE Stephen Dweck?

We checked QVC’s program guide ourselves, and there it was: Dweck was doing a lower-priced jewelry line for QVC called Dweck’s Diamonds. His Neiman Marcus pieces didn’t even have diamonds. The high-end stuff is made with semi-precious stones.

Also in October, we were checking the press releases on HSN’s Web site when we saw the network had struck a deal with one of the most famous and elite fashion houses: Badgley Mischka, designers of bejeweled gowns for the red carpet and celebrities.

We’ve written bits and pieces of this during the past two months, but we thought we’d tie it all up in a tidy package for Thanksgiving: There has been a sea change in the home shopping world, prompted by the disastrous economy and the crash of the luxury market.

Yes, home shopping networks have seen their sales hurt by the economy, like everyone else. But they claim they are still managing to steal market share from brick-and-mortar retailers. In fact, QVC is making a full-frontal assault on them this Black Friday, with 28 hours of special products and programming stunts starting Thanksgiving night.

The consumer press will continue to mention “cubic zirconia” in every story it writes about QVC or HSN, oblivious to the fact that some of the most esteemed names in fashion, jewelry and cosmetics — brands you find in Saks, Bloomingdale’s and Neiman Marcus — are plying their wares on the aforementioned home shopping channels.

ShopNBC CEO Keith Stewart

Male journalists are blind to this. You still have the nerds at Gawker, a snide Web Site for the navel-gazing media, chiding HSN for selling “useless crap.”

If you have ever seen how male journalists dress or their fashion and style sensibilities, you will realize that you can’t expect them to know names like Badgley Mischka, Judith Ripka, Robert Lee Morris, our fellow Montclair, N.J., resident Bobbi Brown, Yves Saint Laurent, Smashbox, Lancome and Dweck. And these brands and artists don’t represent “useless crap.”

Luxury-good makers are hurting, and they need to make up their loss in sales. So they are turning to outlets like QVC, as CEO Mike George explained at a recent Liberty Media conference, as outlets to distribute new lower-priced lines to the masses. George cited fashion designer Vivienne Tam’s QVC alliance at the meeting held in Manhattan by his parent company, Liberty.

“This complete implosion of luxury retailing in America has caused all these folks to rethink their business model,” George said.

And that means partnering with QVC, HSN or ShopNBC.

As we said, it will take the consumer press years to figure out that home shopping channels are distribution powerhouses that have undergone a transformation, in part because of the infllux of talent like a Morris, who does couture jewelry for designers like Donna Karan and RLM Studio sterling silver jewelry for QVC.

The Big Three — QVC, HSN and ShopNBC — are aggressively trying to broaden their audience and potential customer base, those who don’t normally watch any of these three networks. That means the three are actually “programming” the channels, doing “shows” that have entertainment value, not just product shilling, so they will attract non-QVC or non-HSN watchers.

We remember once interviewing a QVC exec years ago and asking what the network’s ratings were. He said ratings were irrelevant: QVC was only concerned about how many products were sold in an hour.

HSN CEO Mindy Grossman

That’s a totally different tune from what we heard recently from QVC’s George, and from the strategies that HSN CEO Mindy Grossman and ShopNBC CEO Keith Stewart have initiated.

Like traditional TV networks, the home shopping players want viewers to “sample” a QVC or an HSN. These new audience members, hopefully, will then see products that they want to buy.

For example, singer Natalie Cole recently did a live concert on HSN to promote a new Holiday CD set she is selling on the channel. If you’re a fan, you might tune in to HSN to see her, and then actually decide to purchase her CD. Artists such
as Jose Feliciano have also performed live on QVC.

QVC alum Stewart on a recent third-quarter conference call pointed out that actress-entrepreneur Suzanne Somers, who came to ShopNBC from HSN, had succeeded in attracting new viewers to Minneapolis-based ShopNBC because she was “entertaining.” And these networks want new eyeballs.

And home shopping networks’ capacity to reach millions of consumers and do fulfillment of orders has not been lost on magazine publishers, celebrities or cable’s reality TV stars. With circulation falling, women’s magazines such as Lucky, Allure, Glamour and Self are partnering with HSN to sell subscriptions.

And stars have seen the light. In a recent interview in Oprah Winfey’s O magazine, Joan Rivers, who’s had a jewelry line on QVC for almost 20 years, told O she was on home shopping when “nobody except dead celebrities was doing merchandise on TV.”

Nowadays, it’s hard to find a celebrity or TV star who doesn’t have a home shopping line. Even Madonna was interviewed on HSN when she was selling her children’s book.

Here’s a partial list:

Paula Abdul, HSN, formerly “American Idol,” Fox

Rachel Zoe, QVC, “The Rachel Zoe Project,” Bravo

Isaac Mizrahi, QVC, “The Fashion Show,” Bravo

Padma Lakshmi, HSN, “Top Chef,” Bravo

Ramona Singer, HSN, “The Real Housewives of New York City,” Bravo

Susan Lucci, HSN, “All My Children,” ABC

Carson Kressley, QVC, “How to Look Good Naked,” Lifetime Television

Dr. Robert Rey, ShopNBC, “Dr. 90210,” E! Entertainment Television

Tori Spelling, HSN, “Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood,” Oxygen

Paula Deen, QVC, Food Network

Rachael Ray, QVC, “The Rachael Ray Show,” syndication

Ingrid Hoffmann, HSN, Food Network and Univision

Home shopping is a big business. ShopNBC is the also-ran in the group, but in the third quarter Stewart made some nice progress cutting its losses. Sales for the Big Three were all down, but down less than previous quarters.

And we are not talking chump change for these networks. The three home shopping channels generated $8.3 billion in net revenue in 2008. QVC domestic posted $4.9 billion, HSN netted $2.8 billion and ShopNBC had $568 million.

Even with revenue still slipping this year, for the first nine months QVC had revenue of $3.308 billion; HSN had net sales of $1.4 billion; and ShopNBC had $372.6 million in net sales.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Ex-‘Idol’ Judge Paula Abdul Missing In Action At HSN

October 12, 2009

What happened to Paula Abdul’s scheduled appearances for yesterday and today, Columbus Day, on HSN?

Singer and former “American Idol” judge Abdul does a jewelry line for HSN called Forever Your Girl. According to both HSN’s October print program guide and its October jewelry guide flyer, Abdul had five shows slated for Oct. 11 and 12, Sunday and today.

But those shows were apparently cancelled. Last night when we tuned to HSN for Abdul’s scheduled 11 p.m. show, there was an exercise-gear show on instead. And she is not listed in HSN’s online program guide for any shows today.

The Abdul schedule change must have been pretty last minute, because our Comcast onscreen program guide still had HSN’s 11 p.m. slot Sunday designated as Paula Abdul.

We know Abdul is a busy gal, but we wonder why she waa a no-show on HSN. We just hope the former “Idol” judge just had an unexpected scheduling conflict that nixed her making the trip to Florida, not any falling out with HSN.

Abdul started her home shopping jewelry line on QVC, and then shifted over to HSN.