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American Idol Judges 2014 Season: New Mentor Randy Jackson Supports New Judge Panel

First Posted: Sep 13, 2013 02:36 PM EDT

On Tuesday, Randy Jackson said that he has support for and confidence in the latest judge panel for the 2014 season of "American Idol."

Season 13 of "American Idol" features returning judges Keith Urban and Jennifer Lopez and a brand new judge, Harry Connick Jr. During the Novak Djokovic Foundation Gala Dinner in New York City, Jackson expressed his love for the judges.

"I know them all very, very well," Jackson said. "They're all amazing people, great in their own right, very credible, really cool, funny."

Jackson also said that fans of the singing competition show can expect to see a lot of inside jokes amongst the three. According to Jackson the judges will make the newest season of "America Idol" the "greatest show of its kind ever."

The former "American Idol" judge will serve as a mentor on the next season. "I've moved to the higher court now," Jackson said.

Jackson also talked about "American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest who is currently hosting NBC's game show, "The Million Second Quiz." According to a joking Jackson, the show has made Seacrest "meaner."

Jackson attended the second annual  Novak Djokovic Foundation Gala Dinner in order to raise money for children's education in Siberia. Jesse Metcalife, Adriana Lima, Nicky Hilton, Jimmy Connors, John McEnroe, Goldie Hawn, Ricky Gervais, and Naomi Cmpbell were also in attendance, The Hollywood Reporter reports. The dinner raised $2.5 million, an increase from last year' $1.4 million.

From now until Sept. 20, "Idol" lovers can vote for family or friends whom they think are worthy via the "Nominate an Idol" campaign. Voting is available at

The first round of auditions for the 2014 season of "American Idol" began at the Boston Marriot Copley Place. According to the Boston Globe, the judges were "lighthearted" and "fielded questions and poked fun at one another in their first meeting with the press."

Urban served as a judge on the previous season of "American Idol" and was happy to renew the role. Lopez, on the other hand, was a judge on season 10 of the singing competition show, but left after two seasons in 2012 in order to go on tour.

"I did miss it," Lopez said. "I don't know what's going to happen, but I know we're going to have a great time, and we're already off to a great start."

Season 13 of "American Idol" premieres January 2014 on FOX.

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