The 13th season of the hit Fox television program "American Idoi" will feature a new lineup of judges this season. Ratings dipped last year as battling divas Marian Carey and Nicky Minaj failed to jell as a team.
The network officially announced the signing of popular jazz vocalist and pianist Harry Coinnick Jr. as the new face on the panel. Connick work with singers in pervious seasons as a mentor and will be a natural fit with the established panel.
Actress and pop star Jennifer Lopez will return to the show after missing the 2013 season.
Producers confirmed that country superstar Keith Urban is returning to the show. He said the new team; new energy and a completely new field of singers will be discovered. Original judge Randy Jackson will be returning as a mentor to the pop star wannabes.
Record executive Jimmy Iovine had served as mentor in recent seasons. Fox said that Universal Music Group's Interscope Records, under Iovine's direction as chairman, will continue to release "Idol" winner and contestant music.
Although flamboyant judges have been a part of the show's success since the early antics of Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul, "Idol" also won viewers by discovering future stars including Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood and Jennifer Hudson. Recent winners Adam Lambert and Taylor Hicks haven't found a broad audience as recording artists.
Tryouts are scheduled for Atlanta; Austin, Texas; Boston; Detroit; Omaha, Neb.; Salt Lake City and San Francisco. "American Idol" returns in January.