AMERICAN IDOL star Clay Aiken is dedicating his Independence Day Washington DC performance to his teenage brother, who has just joined the Marines.

The singer is among the headliners at the A CAPITOL FOURTH show, which will be broadcast live across America on Sunday (04JUL04), and admits he has special personal reasons to perform.

His younger brother BRETT, 18, has just enlisted for active duty.

He says, "This Fourth of July is special because my dad was in the Air Force and my brother is now in the military. It gives a little more meaning to it this year."

Aiken's stepfather RAY PARKER died on 4 July two years ago (02).

The American Idol runner-up will sing the national anthem, Lee Greenwood's stirring GOD BLESS THE USA and an orchestra-backed version of his hit MEASURE OF A MAN.

The concert, to be staged at the West Lawn of the US Capitol building, will also feature performances from country couple Vince Gill and AMY GRANT and the Bee Gees.

02/07/2004 19:46