Clay Aiken Slams American Idol Judges

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Next year will mark a decade since Clay Aiken finished second on American Idol.

But the singer - who is off on a new holiday-themed tour - doesn't expect the show to honor this 10th anniversary via any kind of performance invitation, not considering the path Aiken believes Idol has headed down.

Clay Aiken Pose

"Idol back in those days was about the contestants," Aiken tells The Hollywood Reporter. "Kelly [Clarkson] and Justin and Tamyra [Gray] and Nikki McKibbin, they were all the stars of the show. And when I was on, Ruben [Studdard] and myself and Kimberley Locke were the stars of the show.

"Now Idol is about the judges. I don't even know if they remember there are contestants anymore."

Ouch. Zing!

Season 12 will feature three new panelists, of course, but the past few months have been focused entirely on the supposed feud between Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj, lending credence to Aiken's point.

In other American Idol alumni news:

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American Idol Quotes

Brooke White's tears come from the authentic, good soul that she is. Her heart was breaking because she was overwhelmed with the experience she had with the show and the gift that it brought.

Paula Abdul [after Brooke White was eliminated on season seven]

I read some of this online this morning and just for the record, the rumors — they’re not true. She’s part of our family and we love her.

Ryan Seacrest [on rumor of Paula Abdul being drunk on the show]