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The Happy Hickster

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The Incredible Rise (and Many Hairstyles) of Clay Aiken


Carolina Boy
Clay claims he was “clumsy” and “spastic” as a child growing up in Raleigh, North Carolina.

American Idol
Behind the scenes, Clay was still just a special-ed teacher who loved his mama.

Sweet Second Place
The spiky-headed singer lost the Idol title to Ruben Studdard, who was dropped by his record company in December 2007.

Hollywood Virgin
When Clay appeared at L.A.’s Megastore, two Claymates ended up tattooing his autograph onto their backs.

Blame It on Broadway
Clay (not Carrot Top) bows and smiles at the many mothers who flocked to his opening night in Spamalot.


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