Brian Hiatt
June 30, 2003 AT 04:00 AM EDT

For Clay Aiken and Ruben Studdard, the ”American Idol” competition may never end. The pair’s as-yet-untitled debut albums are both set to be released Aug. 18, an RCA Records spokesperson tells The pair’s labels, RCA and J Records (both subsidiaries of RCA Music Group), successfully pursued an identical strategy last week with their singles. Aiken’s ”This is the Night/Bridge Over Troubled Water” debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s singles sales chart with nearly 393,000 copies sold —  trouncing the week’s second-best selling single, Studdard’s ”Flying Without Wings/Superstar,” which sold about 286,000 copies.


The RCA spokesperson cautioned that the dates for the unfinished albums could change; for example, the previous ”Idol” winner, Kelly Clarkson, released her platinum debut ”Thankful” months later than planned. Meanwhile, Clay’s probably just thankful his ongoing battle with Ruben hasn’t been extended to the boxing ring. Yet.

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