Randy Jackson is OUT of American Idol

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According to TMZ, the last remaining original judge of the talent reality show is also out

FIRST, THE ROCKSTAR, then the Latina, and now the 'Dawg.' All 3 are out of AI. Screen grab from YouTube (sulemonzee)

MANILA, Philippines – It’s official: Randy Jackson will no longer be a judge in the next season of American Idol, according to entertainment news website TMZ.

Jackson will, however, remain in the show as a “mentor,” joining the ranks of fellow music producer Jimmy Iovine who has been a mentor of AI contestants for two seasons.

How exactly Jackson will be a mentor is not yet clear, but according to the TMZ report, “they feel they need him because he’s the glue that helps keep the show together.”

Jackson is a Grammy-winning producer who has been in the music industry since the 1980s, when he started out as a bassist, playing for legendary musician Santana. He was also a sessionist for the rock band Journey and played bass for several of saxophonist Kenny G’s albums. In the 90s, he became a producer for singers like Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion and also played music for Madonna.

He became an American Idol judge in 2002 with Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul. Abdul left in 2009 and Cowell in 2010. Other celebrities who sat on the AI judges’ table with Jackson through the years are Kara DioGuardi, Ellen Degeneres and, most recently, Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez (who both left the show after the 11th season).

Jackson is the producer of talent reality show America’s Best Dance Crew that airs over MTV.

Looks like AI season 12 will see a “fresh” crop of judges, from Mariah Carey to Nicki Minaj to… who’s your guess? Kanye West, P. Diddy or Keith Urban? 

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