'Idol' Finalist Kellie Pickler Has Last Laugh, Inks Record Deal

Singer's debut album due November 14.

She may have been on the receiving end of countless dumb-blonde jokes, but "American Idol" finalist Kellie Pickler is having the last laugh.

A little more than a week after fourth-place finisher Chris Daughtry inked a record deal with 19 Recordings/ RCA Records (see " 'American Idol' Rocker Chris Daughtry Signs Record Deal"), sixth-place finalist Pickler has signed her own contract with 19 Recordings/ BNA Records (the latter of which is part of the RCA label group). Founded by the show's creator, Simon Fuller, 19 Recordings is also home to fellow Idols Kelly Clarkson, Fantasia and Ruben Studdard.

"I've always dreamed of getting a record deal so now my dream has come true!" Pickler said in a statement released Monday (July 17).

The 20-year-old Southern songstress announced her good fortune on Monday while guest co-hosting "The View."

Despite a jam-packed tour schedule for American Idols Live (see "Taylor Dusts Off Harmonica, Kellie Puts Country Spin On 'Grease' For 'Idol' Tour"), Pickler will work on the album between dates. The first single is scheduled to hit airwaves in September and her debut album is slated to land in stores November 14.

In addition to her cover of Patsy Cline's "Walkin' After Midnight," which can be found on American Idol Season 5 Encores, the country crooner is best remembered for her comical antics that included pronouncing salmon "sal-mon" and asking judge Simon Cowell "What's a ballsy?" in response to his comments on her performance.

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