The new American Idol judging panel — Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez and Randy Jackson — headed to Austin, Texas last weekend for two days of auditions, where the crew joined host Ryan Seacrest to watch hundreds of try-outs. Two cities into their season 10 audition tour, new judges Tyler and Lopez also talked about how they were adjusting to their new jobs. “Was I nervous doing this? You bet your booty,” Tyler told Fox. “Season ten for American Idol is going to be over the top, so it’s hard for us to say ‘Nope, sorry, you don’t cut it,’ because they well up, they cry, they make me cry.”
While viewers will have to wait until the January premiere to see the new judges’ on-screen chemistry, Jackson, a judge since season one, promises that this year’s talent has been the best yet. “The talent is better this season…I know we say it every time,” Jackson said. “I think we’ve put through more people in these last two cities than we’ve put through in the whole thing, past seasons.” Lopez estimated that at one point, 15 straight contestants were given the golden ticket to Hollywood Week. “Randy’s been here forever, so he was a great help and a gauge. It was like, ‘OK, who’s coming in here? How does this compare?’ But now were comparing from city to city, so now we’re kind of getting a flow,” Lopez said.