'American Idol': Steven Tyler signs deal to judge, reports say

steven-tyler-aerosmith-320.jpg Steven Tyler has signed a contract to be an "American Idol" judge next season, according to reports.

Tyler, the lead singer of Aerosmith, has been rumored to be close to a deal for weeks. Now, according to reports from The Hollywood Reporter and E!, he has a deal in place. FOX, per usual, has no comment.

Having Tyler locked in now will likely allow him to take part in shooting the audition rounds with the other judges -- whomever they might be -- in September. (Mass auditions have already started; a select few will get callbacks to sing for the judges.)

Meanwhile, depending on the source, FOX either is or isn't still talking with Jennifer Lopez about joining Tyler at the judges' table but has balked at her salary demand, which is reportedly in the $20 million range. Shania Twain, a guest judge and mentor last season, is a potential alternative.

Randy Jackson is likely to return next season, but Kara DioGuardi's status is still in limbo -- a situation about which her dad, at least, is not very happy.

So far the only official "Idol" announcement for Season 10 has been that Nigel Lythgoe will return as an executive producer.

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