Idol Chatter: Hitmaker Dr. Luke Bows Out as Possible Third Judge -- So, What Now?

American Idol Season 13 JudgesVeteran music producer Dr. Luke will not, as recently rumored, be joining American Idol‘s Season 13 panel, due to a professional conflict — calling into serious question who will be the third judge.

PHOTO GALLERY | American Idol: 10 Bold, Completely Original, Randy Jackson-Free Fixes to Revive Season 13

As reported by The Hollywood Reporter, the songwriter/producer — who over the years has given unto us myriad hit singles including Kelly Clarkson’s “Since U Been Gone,” Katy Perry’s “California Gurls” and Ke$ha’s “Tik Tok” — is under contract with Sony Music, and thus would be preempted from helping develop artists for rival Universal Music Group aka Idol‘s default label.

Plus, as a source explains to THR.com, with Dr. Luke’s Kemosabe label busy getting rapper Becky G off the ground, deferring the time-demanding overture from Idol “was the best thing for all parties.”

RELATED | Randy Jackson Not Leaving Idol, In Talks to Replace Jimmy Iovine as Mentor

Thusly, with no one else reported to be on Idol‘s short list (only The Beebs’ manager, Scooter Braun, has merited any recent chatter), it is almost anyone’s guess who will join Keith Urban and (the unofficially officially returning) Jennifer Lopez as judges for the next cycle.

Hey, what’s Billy Ray Cyrus’ daughter up to these days…? She has some pop music savvy, no?

GET MORE: American Idol, Casting News, News