CANADA MUSIC

Clay Aiken: 'American Idol' Is About The Judges Now

12/17/2012 01:07 pm ET

Clay Aiken has noticed a shift in "American Idol." Aiken, was the runner up in Season 2 of the Fox singing competition series said the show has shifted its attention in later season.s

While reminiscing with Billboard about his time on the series, Aiken said the first few seasons of "Idol" were "about the contestants."

"Kelly [Clarkson] and Justin [Guarini] and Tamyra [Gray] and Nikki McKibbin, they were all the stars of the show," Aiken said. "And when I was on, Ruben (Studdard) and myself and Kimberly Locke were the stars of the show. Now 'Idol' is about the judges. I don't even know if they remember there are contestants anymore."

Over its 12 years on the air, "American Idol" has seen its judging panel shift. Original judges Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul have left the series, Ellen DeGeneres and Kara DioGuardi came and went and Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler lasted two seasons. Only Randy Jackson has remained.

For Season 12, "Idol" has brought in Keith Urban, Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey to sit alongside Jackson. The show has made headlines due to the reported feuding between Minaj and Carey, an Australian network even made it the center of a promo for the new season.

Click over to Billboard for more from Aiken.

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