After Colton Dixon’s swift (and unfair) elimination this week on American Idol, he was headed to New York for some press time and talk show exposure. I still look forward to the day I’ll hear his flawless voice live, but for now meeting him (twice!) will have to do.
I follow Colton on Twitter, so the moment he tweeted about his arrival in New York I couldn’t be more excited! Still bitter about his Idol exit, I jumped at the opportunity to meet him. I invited my friend Tomwattie and several others to try to get together as many fans to support him as possible, but it seemed like most others were busy.
First came Live with Kelly, where he was scheduled to perform as a musical guest. Tomwattie and I tried to get in for standby tickets, but they didn’t let anyone in for standby. Despite the heavy rain overnight and into the morning, every person with a ticket actually showed up, which is a definite rarity. Even though we couldn’t get into the show itself, we were able to see Colton arrive. The second we spotted the stubble and his well-styled hair, it was kind of a fanboy squeal moment. They took him in through the garage, but we shouted his name and he looked back at us through the tinted windows of the car as they lowered the garage door. He surely spotted the two of us, especially since at that point we were the only ones waiting for him.
Also on Live with Kelly on Monday, actress Kate Walsh of Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice seemed to attract most of the crowd. As soon as it hit 7:30, quite a crowd had collected and the majority of them claimed to be waiting for Kate. There was only a handful of people for Colton, but everyone waiting seemed to be a pretty passionate fan, with every sentiment still tinged with a hint of anger and sadness at his decidedly early elimination.
After Kate left in her car without stopping to meet any fans, many of those waiting quickly dispersed and some even chased the vehicle down the street. Out of nowhere in between all the commotion, Hugh Grant arrived at the show, filming ahead for his Tuesday appearance. I was the only one that even noticed him and said hi, but I didn’t want to bother him.
Once the show was over around 10, it wasn’t long before Colton stepped out to meet the fans. The second we spotted him inside, he waved to a couple of screams and promised he would come right over. He was being rushed, but I was still honestly shocked that he actually stopped considering the rain. Up close, that genius web of hair is something of a marvel. The styling is so brilliant and so perfect, and his smile so bright and pure, so naturally I was totally thrown off at first. With the help of my friend’s iPhone 4, I was able to use the double-sided camera to get a rather spectacular picture. I didn’t have time to say much to Colton, especially since he seemed to be in a hurry and the paparazzi were hounding him. He seemed like a pro with meeting fans already, shooing away the ungodly paparazzi and really trying his hardest to get to each person. His charisma and charm on Idol is most certainly genuine. His smile was contagious.
I only slept about two hours, but the journey was well worth it. After all of the fans had a little freakout after Colton left, he got into the car to leave. He smiled and waved to us on the way out, showing his gratitude in a clear appreciation for fan support. I watched his Kelly performance later that night in awe at his brilliance. Of course, not wanting to pass up the opportunity to see him more than once, Tomwattie and I planned accordingly to meet him on Good Day New York.
After napping the day away, we awoke bright and early Tuesday at 5:30. I knew it was going to be another early morning, so for some reason it didn’t feel quite as brutal. While Live with Kelly was pretty up in the air for meeting Colton, especially because of the rain, we had heard GDNY was always a much easier affair. We met up with Stephanie, another of my friends, and headed to the studio for GDNY. Colton also was on The Today Show, but we all together made the conscious decision to check out GDNY instead.
When we arrived outside the studio, it was, as expected, entirely empty. A small group showed up shortly after, but for the most part, it was a much tinier selection of people than Live with Kelly. Checking Twitter for fan updates, the second we read that Colton had finished up his Today Show appearance, it was kind of a simultaneous “OMG” moment. Only minutes later, Colton arrived in an SUV with the same publicist as last time, and there was an instant smile across his face. The second we saw his perfectly styled hair emerge from the car, he had an ear-to-ear smile. Tomwattie and I were sure he recognized us from the day before, and he walked right up to Stephanie.
After taking her picture, the publicist took my camera and took the picture for me. I got in a few words with Colton this time around, asking him how his day was. He was very generous and extremely nice, which wasn’t any sort of change from the day before. Somehow, it was less hectic though, with no screaming and no rush. He made sure to stop for every person out there, and when my picture came out a bit blurry he pulled me in for another photo. After the second one, he asked me to make sure the picture came out, and then I thanked him for his time. After the impromptu meet and greet, he headed inside. Tired and drained from the two days, we left afterward despite the pump of adrenaline from meeting him again.
Two days in a row, I managed to meet Colton Dixon, and as far as Idol contestants go, he was one of the nicest I have ever met. I’ll be on the lookout for any news about a record deal or a tour set list because he needs support in any way he can get it. Colton may not be on Idol anymore, but you can catch him on the American Idols Tour 2012 this summer. Colton should have made it to the finale!