Keith Urban Wants Spot As American Idol Judge In 2014

Keith Urban - American Idol judge

When Season 12 ended it was clear that a major shakeup was coming for the American Idol judges panel in 2014. Randy Jackson quit after twelve long years, Mariah Carey was said to definitely not be returning, and after all the drama surrounding Nicki Minaj it was hard to imagine her returning. That left Keith Urban waiting and wondering if he’d be invited back.

Instead of waiting for an invitation Keith decided to put out the request first telling reporters last week that yes, he wants back in on FOX’s next season of the series. As for the chances of that happening? It’s still up in the air, he said.

“I have no idea. All I know is that there is talk about it,” he says. “For me, I’m in the studio literally this week finishing up my album and putting a tour together, hitting the road in July. So onwards.”

Urban was definitely a well-liked personality on the panel this year and his price tag was relatively low (about a third of what Mariah earned), but FOX has to decide what direction it wants to take. If they bring Keith back then they won’t be able to start with a clean slate of judges, but keeping at least one familiar face would give the 2014 American Idol season at least a touch of continuity. It all depends on what direction FOX wants to take.

Do you think FOX should bring Keith Urban back as an American Idol 2014 judge or start over with a completely new panel next year?

Source: EW





  1. Keith was the ONLY judge I liked on AI. Please bring him back. He was a great mentor to the contestants. He is a keeper in my book. Might not watch next season depending on who the judges are. I could not stomach Nikki at all!

  2. Yes, Keith should be brought back! And bring Jennifer Lopez back and Robin Thicke.

  3. Keith was the only judge I liked. Nicki made me leave the room. Mariah couldn’t stop playing with her hair and talking in two word sentences, and I couldn’t stomach one more DAWG. Keith and Steven yes. Jennifer? No….fur loving woman – not my fav.

  4. Keith did an amazing job as judge and mentor to the contestants…and he brought some joy to the viewing audience as he rocked on with the songs the contestants sang…He is my favourite judge of all judges since AI started.

  5. YES YES YES, he was great, and please pick two others only, Nicki has to go, she was what ruined this season for so many!!! Mariah was ok but not really a good judge. Two guys and a woman is the best way, like it was in the original, that fourth judge was ridiculous!

  6. Why does it have to start with a ‘clean slate’? How many judges have been on the panel for years? Keith is the reason many of us kept watching. And to tell you the truth I didn’t know what Keith Urban looked like (not a real country fan) until he was on American Idol. Now I realize what a genuine person he is and what I’d been missing! 🙂 He’s the best judge thus far! 🙂

  7. I thought Keith was a good judge for Idol. He gave good feedback to the contestants and would definitely want to see him back, a real natural and good constructive criticism when needed. . As for Mariah Carey good riddance, both the women were so into themselves it was sickening to watch. Sorry to see Randy Jackson leave. I’ve been watching Idol from the start but sorry to say that between the judges, and Jimmy (he’s another one who needs to go, tired of him and his bad advice) they need to make some changes.

  8. Yes they should. I enjoyed his being a judge but if they bring Nikki back, they’ll lose me as a viewer since season 1.

  9. The AI producers need to do something smart for a change and they should start with keeping Keith Urban on the judges panel. He was the best by far this season in my book. He was fair and constructive in his critiques and I believe he had the contestants’ best interests at heart. As for the other judges, please do not bring back JLo. As I posted before, I don’t think I could stomach anymore of her “goosies!” I don’t believe she offered any good advice for the past contestants and for that matter, I hope they don’t bring back Steven Tyler either. His “That was beautiful” comment got old very quickly and like JLo, he never had any good advice to offer. I don’t know who would best fill the empty seats at the judges table but losing Keith would truly be a tremendous loss for AI. Of course this is jmo…

  10. I think that Kieth was the only one that didn’t saw the show about himself.He was honest,his remarks where intelligent,constructive and meaninfull and show a genuine feeling for the show and there talent.He is of the likes of Jlo,Steven Tyler and Paula Abdul.For sure that those judges where the heart of the show cause they care about the talent.Keith fits this requirements.

  11. Yes, bring Keith back. When he had to say something negative, he gave honest but tactful assessments and he came across to me as someone who really took an interest in the contestants. Not that the others did not, but he just always seemed so sincere and laid back.

    Please do NOT bring Nikki back. There were times when her behavior and the things that she said made me wonder if she was on something.

    Has there been any consideration to offering a judge’s seat to a former American Idol winner or another contestant who has done well with their career post-Idol?

    • ooh never thought of that idea…let past contestants that ALMOST won be judge..they know what to look for that’s for sure…great idea I second that one !!!

  12. I actually adored Mariah Carey on the show and think she should return and Nikki be axed permanently! Very low class and too much vulgar language from her! Lets fight for Mariah….YAY!

    • I liked her as well, she never put anyone down nor to me acted like she had a favorite.

  13. It doesn’t matter who FOX chooses for judges on AI somebody isn;t going to like them .I don’t think they need all new judges but I agree with a lot of people That Nikki was the worst judge and they definitlyneed to bring back Kieth Urban

  14. Yes let Kieth stay on American Idol. He is a wonderful judge and honest in what he says. My son Eric did tryouts for American Idol two times. The first time was in San Diego he made it threw the first day how exciting. The second time try outs were in Phoenix that did not go quite as well everyone was focused on that girl in the swim suit, so now he wont try out any more. I wish he would tho there is so much talent out there including my son. We have watch Idol for 12 years since it started Kieth would be the start of the new judges. Thank you.

  15. Yes he should come back. He was the least biased and most professional one of the entire group. I suffered through this year with Nikki but definitely would not watch next year if she is there. I like Mariah but she brought absolutely nothing to judging and critquing. Liked Randy but it was time for him to move on.

  16. Yes!!!!! He was the best judge this year. I will probably watch if he does come back..

  17. Yes, Keith was great!! I liked it when he fell out of that chair too!! I laughed…

  18. Yes! Bring Keith back. He was a great judge with really honest and artistic criticism. Loved him!!!

  19. Yes, I think Keith Urban should be invited back as a judge on American Idol – he knows music & seemed to enjoy all the contestants & gave them positive advise !!!!

  20. Keith is a classy guy. Always had the right mix of critique and praise. Also, he represents the country music contingent. I vote for Keith to stay. Would love to see J-Lo and Steven back.

  21. Keep Keith, the most honest speaking judge. If they do bad he is not cruel and tries to give them tips to improve. Harry Connick Jr might be a good judge too. They need to quit putting people before the judges who can’t sing. How many got to that point by the show judges passing over good singers? That part you don’t know about. I’m from Birmingham, Al where Rubuen, Taylor Hicks and Bo Bice got there start. Over 20,000 showed up. Only 300 of those got to see the real judges. Out of those 100 where Baaaaad singers to make the tryouts funny on tv. Do away with that and put all good singers through for the judges!

  22. Yes they should bring Keith back for season 2014. He really knows his music and is very fair.

  23. I think they should bring Keith back. He was honest, fair, constructive and not hurtful. How about adding Gladys Knight to the panel, she definitely knows what it takes to make it.


  25. Yes absolutely bring Keith back. Bring back Mariah, too, if she is iinterested. But drop Nicki — her silly and stupid remarks hurt the show. Nicki gave the contestants some very helpful comments — if she had stayed with just that, it would have been okay, but her off-topic remarks were so off-putting it was almost enough to make this die-hard Idol fan turn it off.

  26. This year was the only American Idol I didn’t watch… Reason for that was Nikki…..Got on my nerves bad…And her whiny voice….Couldn’t stand it….

  27. YES – he was the only reason to turn on the sound when the judges spoke.

  28. Yes, he deserves to be able to return. He was great, it was Nicki and Mariah that total ruined this season. They were awful and made watching the
    show worse than a bad B movie!!

  29. Keith AND Nicki should come back! I know, everyone is throwing rotten eggs at Nicki, but I think she had some GREAT insight and I hated it that they left her off of the stage the final show. What a LOW BLOW. LOVE Keith and sure hope he gets to come back.

    • Nicki had a bad attitude and a fowl mouth. Prime time show needs clean constructive words or wisdom and sometimes harsh words of wisdom but not nasty or sick words like I want to eat you or have your baby or stupid stuff like that just judging. KEEP KEITH AND GET J-LO BACK.

  30. Keep Keith – continuity is good for the show. Mariah is sweet but has nothing to add as a judge. Niki’s controversial & AI could use that.

  31. My wife and I have already decided to boycott AI If the same judges came back…Keith is Ok for a Newby….We will have to see what changes are made before we will ever watch A I again!

  32. I loved Keith and Miriah and Steven Tyler. But if they pick out the great singers next year like they did this year, I surely will watch. They had some great talent this year.

  33. I really liked Keith as a judge. I like how he critiqued honestly and with encouragement. I think the down fall of this past season for me was the nasty diva drama. I couldn’t stand to watch and listen to the auditions. The cat fighting was a complete turn off and only served to detract from the talent.

  34. I very much liked Keith as a judge. I hope there is one familiar face on the judges panel next year and it would be nice if it were him.


  36. You could tell when you watch Keith that he genuinely loves music. All kinds of music. I hope they have him back.

  37. I want Keith back! When I heard the judges were going, he was the only really disappointment I had. I enjoyed Keith’s critiques and his genuine interest in helping the contestants.

    • Randy has to go he is burnt out. and has nothing left to say.keep Keith and get J-lo and Steven T. back

  38. Definitely bring him back. He
    was a great asset to the judges panel. Get rid of that Nikki, she is nothing but a space cadet!!

  39. I definitely want to see Keith back on the panel next season, he’s well grounded, honest and respectful of the contestants, and appears to be well liked by the Idol fan base. Nicki on the other hand, why was she kept on for the entire Season 12? Should have been cut mid-season or sooner!

  40. I submitted a comment that did not appear. Am I not allowed to comment here? This has happened before, but I don’t understand why my comments disappear. I will shorten my comments. I like Stevie Nicks, Keith, and a guest judge each week that could include former Idol contestants who were finalists or even JLo or Steven if they aren’t on tour. No Harry Connick, Jr., please.

  41. yes I think he should stay with American Idol! He was great as one of the judges and very honest with his decisions!

  42. Yes, Keith was awesome. He was fair and knows his music. He really got into the music and was fun both to watch and listen to.

  43. Bring back Keith and JLo and bring in Harry Connick Jr and Shakira I believe these would make a great Judging panel for American Idol. I like Nicki but not as a judge and Mariah to stiff and uncomfortable needs to stop wearing such tight dresses that creep, just saying…..

  44. Yes, he was the best Judge this year. Keith. J-lo and Steven Tyler add a little spice and Paula could do it again as well.

  45. Yes, definitely! Keith was the only good judge on Idol this season – even better than Randy Jackson, who has been there since the start. Keep him!

  46. Yes, he was one of the reasons I enjoyed the show. His technical knowledge of music, combined with his complete class to all of the contestants and fellow Judges, makes him a worthy candidate for 2014. Please bring him back.

  47. Yes, bring Keith back. He was a very good judge. I say bring two new judges to the table. Forget about J.Lo and Steven Tyler. Been there done that and it wasn’t that great. JMHO

  48. Keith was one of the best ones on. Bring him back. Mariah and Nicki cared more about what they looked like and how much skin they could show. Playing with their hair clothes to tight you can’t stand up.

  49. Yes, yes, yes, bring Keith back for next year and Jennifer Lopez too if possible. Kick Nikki to the curb.

  50. Keith Urban brought more to Idol than any other judge in my opinion. If they loose him heaven help them. His comments were grounded in musical knowledge, humility, optimism, and talent. I am happy to have been able to listen to him.

    If they don’t rehire him, it’s their complete loss. Good Judges are not easy to find. It takes a self assured, competent and caring person and Kieth Urban is all of that and more. Good luck on your record Keith!

  51. Keith was a great judge. He was down to earth with the contestants, honest and was a treat on Idol this year. Hate to see Randy leave though but happy Nicki will not be returning. I think she thought she was there to impress everyone – NOT….

  52. YES Please bring him back!!! He has a lot to offer and he is so likeable. It would be a shame not to have such a while spoken judge back. He really knows what he’s talking about.

  53. I refused to watch after the third episode. I can not stand Niki Minaj. Trashy and dramatic and rude. If AI were smart they would adapt some of the respectfulness and kindness of The Voice. It is a competition but that doesn’t mean people want negative all the time. We’d watch the news if that were the case.


  55. Keith was a great judge and I’d love to see him back. He’s gracious, gives helpful comments in a very positive manner, and,most of all, keeps it about the contestants. No ego like with Nicki & Mariah. I’d hate to see Mariah back – she was useless.

  56. yes loved Keith bring him back for sure..going to miss Randy however…sad he is leaving..guess the drama between Mariah and Niki got to him..can’t blame it that was totalllllly unprofessional of them BOTH…

  57. Keith was great, pls keep him on; but pls make sure Nicki Minaj stays away from this lovely show – she has made it very ugly with her rudeness towards Mariah Carey and her dress sense is simply horrible!!

  58. Yes, I loved Keith Urban. He was a positive, bright, and always right on when critiquing the contestants. It would be nice to have one familiar judge back. I think idol needs a total makeover. It needs some fresh changes after all these years! It’s my favorite show, watch the program every year. I never miss it.!

  59. Yes bring Keith back! Heard Justin Beiber is a choice, if that happens we won’t be watching Idol anymore.

  60. i think they should bring him back . but if it is like in 2012 i will pass . pick the girls or boys that can sing . not yell like they did this year . My son sounded better then them i now what he is saying .

  61. Both the women HAVE TO GO, no doubt about it but letting Keith go would be a mistake.
    He knows music and its clear as day to everyone that he enjoys watching new talent make their way.
    Bring him back I say 🙂

  62. Nicki and Keith had great charisma together. They were both honest with the contestants. Bring them both back!

  63. If you want people to watch you better bring him back. He was the one bright spot in the show.

  64. Yes, bring Keith and Steven Tyler back and add Stevie Nicks or Alicia Keys, someone who is a class act.

  65. I think Keith should definitely come back, I truly enjoyed having him as a judge!!

  66. I think Keith is an excellent judge. He’s a great musician, he knows what he’s talking about, he’s not egotistical, and he’s kind. On top of that he’s very nice to look at as he imparts his wisdom.

  67. Please bring Keith back. He’s the only reason I watched. If he doesn’t come back, I probably won’t watch next season. Also need to bring back Simon!

  68. yes Keith was a positive note for American Idol I hope he returns for 2014 season

  69. I also would like them to keep him. He was a good judge wonderful personality and a great addition to the show.

  70. He was the only good judge. He kept his head down and avoided diva drama. He deserves another year to see what he can bring.

  71. Yes to Keith. I’d like to see Steven Tyler come back as well, then I’d throw in Celine Dion and call it a day. Three judges is enough.

  72. Definitely bring Keith back for another year. I thought he gave honest, spot on opinions. And he’s one of my favorite artists besides.


  74. Keith Urban, albeit a little too nice, is a great judge. He appears to be the most objective of all AI 12 judges. Connick Jr is suck as a mentor, but he is such a stickler to what he thinks AI finalists had to do correctly that it makes him a great candidate to seat on the judges’ panel as well.

  75. Keith is one “Honest to Goodness” judge AI has ever had! Yes bring him back!

  76. I thought Keith did a great job and was the best judge, by far! Definitely bring him back!!!!

  77. Yes! Definitely Bring Him Back! He was fair and knew what he was talking about and loved watching him get into the performances!

  78. Yes! Keep Keith and get rid of the two girls!! Holy Cow they were annoying. Jennifer Lopez was awesome. Bring her back!

  79. Yes,Yes,Yes Bring back Keith Urban. He is ultra gorgeous. And DaRn we ladies like to have something good to look at! And also he is so nice and so sweet’ The ladies favorite word from Keith. ” Baby” with that Aussie accent. And then of course the producers can find the other two.Sherry K

  80. Bring Keith back next season. He was a really good judge and it would be good to see him in the judging chair again. How about Kelly Clarkson as a judge? She would be excellent. Please don’t bring back Jlo. How about Harry Connick Jr. or Barry Manilow ?

    • I agree, fresh new faces as judges. Not saying Keith and Jlo weren’t fun, but critiquing can get to be too much of the same old reactions, and I like the idea of all new artists as they’ll have something new in the way they approach critiquing. We’ve also seen Jlo and Keith perform several times on Idol and it would be nice to see someone else who is a judge perform. I’d still like to see a country artist as one of the judges.

  81. He was a really good judge! He took the job seriously. He was honest and gave useful critiques. He actually got lost in some of the songs and you can tell he really loves music. He has something that the other judges were missing. AND on top of all that, he’s likeable.

  82. Loved Keith as a judge. Hope he comes back. Hated Nicki as a judge. If she comes back, I will have to quit watching after all of these years. Cannot stand that nasally voice for another season. Hope all judges will be talented singers.

  83. Keith was GREAT on AI & I really enjoyed him. Yes, definitely bring him back ! But please show Nicki Minaj the door…..she almost ruined this whole season of AI.

  84. yeah, i agree with most of the comments here. keith urban is “exciting” on TV. he moves and sways to the beat, and i just love his “cuteness”. he should be back on Idol next year…

  85. yes!to keith…yes! to kooky funny Nicki and would also love to see steve tyler back!!

  86. Keith is awesome and the only reason I tuned in this year. Please bring him back! He is kind, astute, handsome, and good with contestants. What’s not to like?

  87. sorry to say but Keith did not make the grade as a judge for me. They were all bad this year. I would hate to se any of them return. And if Jennifer Lopez returns I will give up American Idol altogether. If I have to hear her say “Goosies”again I’ll throw up!

  88. I liked Kieth, so much better than the other new ones…The ladies….Miriah did ok but both ladies had comments that took way way too much time. They drug on and on and on. Nicki should be totally OUT.

  89. Keith was professional , intelligent and always a gentleman. He knows what he is talking about If he wants to come back to this show………they would be crazy not to let him do so. Nikki is the most annoying judge ever. Sorry to see Randy go but I guess he couldn’t take it anymore. Yes, definitely bring Keith back!!!!


  91. I definitely think they should bring him back. He obviously knows a lot about music
    and one of the things we really enjoyed about the show was watching his face and
    body language when a contestant performed. It has been suggested in another
    news forum that Adam Lambert might be a good choice to be one of the judges
    next year and, if that happens, we will not be watching the show next season. He
    is just too “in your face”.

  92. Fox made a mistake by signing Minaj as a judge I don’t think Keith Urban should pay for it by being asked to leave He did a great job

  93. I hope they start fresh next season with a whole new judge’s panel and keep it at three judges. Keith wasn’t horrible, but he wasn’t that good either. I think Adam Lambert would make an awesome judge. He could give the contestants good advise musically and what to expect from the show as a former contestant. Harry Connick Jr. and Stevie Nicks would also be wonderful judges. They have been wonderful mentors and the contestants loved these two. Now THAT would be a great judge’s panel.

  94. I think Keith was a good judge. He’s very realistic with his comments. I think it is really time for Randy to leave. Oh PLEASE get Niki off, she is soooo phoney !!!!! Isn’t it odd that 3 of the judges performed on the last night EXCEPT NIKI . That in itself says something for her. BRING KEITH BACK 2014…..

  95. Keith was only reason I stuck with Idol this year….too much crap amongst the other judges!!

  96. Keith was a great judge. Offered constructive criticism when needed! Some continuity would be a good thing for American Idol. Please bring him back!

  97. Love Keith Urban! He and Mariah are both great! But Not Nicki! Can’t stand her!

  98. Yes, please, bring Keith back to the Idol. He was one of the best judges.

  99. OMG is there any doubt??? He was awesome, like a breath of fresh air!!!! Please bring back Keith!

  100. Yes to Keith no to Nicki. She was the reason I stopped watching this season. I found her annoying and condescending. Keith was mellow but gave some good advice and was tough when he needed to be.

  101. I say keep him he was a good judge.
    Also I think most of the problems was with the producers messing stuff up to get better ratings

  102. I would love to see Keith back next season. He is very knowledgable and lives for the music. He has a genuine personality and is honest but not rude or mean in his critique. Plus, obviously, he is very easy to look at. : ) Please bring him back! But, otherwise, clean house!!

  103. Keith was a consistent and fair judge. He knew how to give them real feedback without being insulting or blowing sunshine someplace. Please bring only Keith back.

  104. PLEASE bring Keith back!! He should NOT be punished for the lowest rated season, especially he was probably the reason, imho, for the show not being canceled altogether!! NO question, he was the best judge on the panel this past season. (Suggestion: Go back to the ONE female judge panel)

  105. What they should do: Keep Keith, lose Nicki
    What they will do: Keep Nicki, lose Keith
    You heard it here first

  106. Keith wasn’t a phenomenal judge, but he was decent. And he was far better than Nicki Minaj. I would have no problem with them bringing Keith back next year, even though I don’t see that happening. They say they plan to make drastic changes and that probably means a completely new judging panel. However, they don’t need to change everything, just the parts that weren’t helping, like Nicki.

  107. please bring Keith Urban back as an Idol judge. He provided great comments for the contestants. Do Not bring back Minaj. She has no class whatsoever to offer the show.

  108. I love him so much! His opinions and his professionalism was right on point. When he spoke I listened, the rest of the judges opinions I fast forward through lol

  109. A BIG YES!!! Please bring him back! Not only was he great on American Idol 2013 but he is good eye candy for the ladies! Plus he has a great personality, is truthful and honest with the contestants without all the ridicule and crude remarks. I think he is a wonderful mentor and person in general.

    • Um Deborah…Keith IS coming back. The 3 judge panel is confirmed and has been for a few weeks now. Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick Jr. are the judges for S13. Where have you been?

  110. One of the people that I would love to see on American Idol as a judge is “Stevie Nicks”. She is a legend and one of the best female vocal artists of our time. Of course this is just my opinion. I also think it would be fun to have “Cindy Lauper” as a judge as well. Her personality is bubbly and all around genuine spirit.

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