From WCNC, Charlotte (pre-concert):
Clay Aiken in Charlotte spotlight as concert tour kicks off
06:55 PM EST on Tuesday, February 24, 2004
By AMY LEHTONEN / WCNC.com
Clay Aiken marked on his hand after signing an autograph on his CD 'Measure of a Man.' "It's not all glamorous," he joked.
Sometimes he just wants to run to the store to get some milk, but lately American Idol runner up Clay Aiken cant even purchase a box of cereal without people whispering and pointing.
Aiken admits all the attention is great, but sometimes he just wants to be alone.
Not that I don't want to see people and I do want to talk to people who are fans, but sometimes I just want to get the milk, Aiken said during an interview Tuesday. Not that I do anything that I care if anybody knows about, but sometimes it's nice to be able to go out of the house and not comb your hair and not have people looking at you.
But all eyes were on Aiken Tuesday night at the Charlotte Coliseum for the first night of a 32 city concert tour with American Idol winner Kelly Clarkson.
I dont know why Charlotte was picked (as the first city on the tour), Aiken said.
Maybe its because Clay is a graduate of UNC-Charlotte. Or maybe its because Clarkson has family in Hickory. Or it could be because of the fans.
Watch entire Clay Aiken interview
Special Clay Aiken section
Some traveled as far away as Canada to be in Charlotte for the first night of the tour. Fans said Aiken is worth it.
"He's so sweet just like I heard said fan Lynne Goney. He's every mother's dream son, and every mother's dream son-in-law."
Aiken said his fans in Charlotte are different than other cities where people just want an autograph.
It's more of a wow, we're really proud of you. You did a great job, Aiken explained. That's probably the best feeling when I'm at home. It's still very difficult to go out and not be spotted, but when I do get spotted people just want to say congratulations, were really proud of you.
UNC-Charlotte graduate and pop star Clay Aiken.
His fame started less than a year ago on American Idol when families watched as the college student was transformed into an idol. He got a new hairstyle and picked out different clothes. He went from a poor college student to a pop star with hundreds of thousands of dollars in the bank and two singles in the Top 40.
Aiken now lives in L.A. with Kimberly Locke, another American Idol star. The first thing Aiken bought was a new Volvo.
I bought a car for myself in L.A. and I bought one in Raleigh and I paid my mom's house off, Aiken said.
Living on the opposite side of the country from his family is difficult for Aiken, who is very close to his mom.
I'm always calling her and asking her to do something. I still rely on her plenty, Aiken said.
His mom and his Charlotte friends will be at the concert Tuesday night.
Aiken said his friends went to buy tickets to the show but it was sold out so he hooked them up.
They're sitting backstage with me and they'll get special passes to kind of hang out in the audience and watch, Aiken said.
While Aiken had a busy day before the concert, he did have time to relax. He said he woke up at 11 a.m., watched 6NEWS and then got a haircut.