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Report: Jennifer Lopez Signs With 'American Idol'

The singer finally inks one-year, $12 million deal to become an 'Idol' judge, joining Randy Jackson and Aerosmith's Steven Tyler

September 15, 2010 9:17 AM ET

Following months of upheaval that saw three of the four American Idol judges leaving the show and everyone from Elton John to Howard Stern rumored as replacements, it seems as though the judges' panel for the next season of Idol is finally in place: According to People , after a summer of much-publicized negotiations, Jennifer Lopez has finally sealed a one-year, $12 million deal to join Idol. Lopez will likely join a revamped judges' table that includes Randy Jackson, the only remaining judge from Idol's first season, and Aerosmith's Steven Tyler, as the show returns to a three-judge format.

Lopez had long been rumored to fill one of the vacancies on Idol, but talk of the singer's demands from producers led to a breakdown in talks. At one point, country star Shania Twain was mentioned as the producers' new target to join the show, but Lopez and Idol reengaged in contract talk soon after. It was suggested that Lopez was holding out for a Fox contract that included development deals and movie options, but People reports she simply settled for the $12 million.

While no official announcements have been made -- Us Weekly writes that Fox will announce the judges in early October -- Lopez seems to bring stability to panel that's seen many recent changes. Idol's fourth judge, Kara DioGuardi, announced two weeks ago that she was leaving the show after two years. DioGuardi's exit followed that of Ellen DeGeneres, who felt her role wasn't the "right fit", and Simon Cowell, Idol's marquee name, who left the show to work on the new American version of Britain's The X Factor.

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Song Stories

“San Francisco Mabel Joy”

Mickey Newbury | 1969

A country-folk song of epic proportions, "San Francisco Mabel Joy" tells the tale of a poor Georgia farmboy who wound up in prison after a move to the Bay Area found love turning into tragedy. First released by Mickey Newbury in 1969, it might be more familiar through covers by Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez and Kenny Rogers. "It was a five-minute song written in a two-minute world," Newbury said. "I was told it would never be cut by any artist ... I was told you could not use the term 'redneck' in a song and get it recorded."

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