Motown star Gladys Knight is close to signing on as a judge on Fox’s kiddie talent contest “American Juniors.”
Knight recently served as a guest judge on “American Idol,” from which “Juniors” was spun off. That’s how “Idol”/”Juniors” producers 19 Entertainment and FremantleMedia cultivated a relationship with the R&B artist.
As a guest on “Idol,” Knight coined the phrase “velvet teddy bear” to describe the silky vocal stylings of contestant Ruben Studdard.
Studdard was crowned “American Idol” Wednesday night during the show’s live finale on Fox. According to the network, just 130,000 votes separated Studdard from second-place Clay Aiken; singles from both singers are expected to be released next month.
As for Knight, the singer knows a thing or two about talent contests: At the age of 7, Knight won a $2,000 grand prize as a contestant on “Ted Mack’s Amateur Hour.” She helped found the Pips — along with two siblings and two cousins — a year later.