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We’ve been hearing several names tossed around as potential replacements for former American Idol judge Simon Cowell. Despite what you may have heard about Bret Michaels or Harry Connick Jr., the clear front-runner is Chris Isaak.

The 54-year-old rocker and rockabilly artist has met twice with FOX and sources indicate he is likely going to be offered the high profile gig.

The new judge must be on board by September, when auditions will begin. Returning for another season are Randy Jackson, Ellen DeGeneres and Kara DioGuardi.

According to FOX, all three men have been contenders, but Michaels, who has openly lobbied for the spot, is no longer in the running.

Harry appeared last season as a mentor for the Idol contestants during Sinatra Week, and received high praise from the AI judges.

Photos: WENN