American Idol’ Recap: Lionel Richie Sings Duet With 1 Hopeful & A Drag Queen Gets A Second Chance
American Idol’ is back for its 5th episode and it’s the final auditions before the golden ticket holders head off to Hollywood! Check out the recap here!
American Idol is back on for another night full of inspired hopefuls looking to catch their big break by auditioning for the talented musician judges, Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, and Luke Bryan and make their way to Hollywood. With these being the final auditions until the performers start their journey in Hollywood, it’s sure to be exciting at every turn! Check out our recap here and find out which hopefuls got the golden ticket and which had to return home empty handed.
Gabby Barrett -The night starts off in Nashville, TN with this 17-year-old from Pittsburgh, PA. The blonde singer is close with her dad and has been singing since she was young. She sings “Good Girl” by her idol, Carrie Underwood. After Katy asks her to sing something else, she keeps suggesting country songs. Lionel tells her they’re looking for her sound and not a replica of someone else. She then belts out a church song, which the judges loved. Lionel gives her a yes vote and so does Luke. Katy tops it off with another yes and she’s off to Hollywood! Before she leaves, the judges take things one step further and play a joke on her dad by bringing him into the room and telling him Gabby’s upset. Gabby then surprises him and lets him know the great news.
Lee Vasi – This 20-year-old Fayetteville, NC native grew up with Lionel’s music and is super excited to audition. She tells Lionel her favorite song is his song “Zoom” and he starts singing the song before getting up and standing next to her while they duet together. Lee is moved and thanks him before singing “Love Shoulda Brought You Home” by Toni Braxton. She starts off belting out the song with a strong voice but her vocals weaken a bit at the end before the judges stop her. Lionel can tell that nerves affected her and he thinks she can polish things up. All three judges prove that although the audition wasn’t the best, they believe in her and three yes votes help her get to Hollywood.
The auditions are now in Los Angeles with a whole new set of potential stars.
Michael J. Woodard – Next is an energetic 20-year-old originally from Philadelphia who starts to sing “Make it Rain” by Ed Sheeran. He begins with a shaky voice and tenses up with nerves which causes him to stop. Lionel walks over to where he’s standing and rubs his shoulders to help him loosen up. He tries again and hits it this time with a soft yet beautiful tone. Lionel admires how even though he has no experience, nobody cares because he’s that charismatic. All three judges vote yes and move him on to the next step in Hollywood.
Brielle Rathbun – This 18-year-old choreographer has dreadlocks and a big heart. She comes from a big family that includes some children that were adopted and talks about the tough time she went through when her parents divorced. After finding out she is a dance teacher, Katy asks her to show Luke some hip thrust moves and it turns into a hilarious “white boy humpty dance” as Luke calls it. Brielle then goes on to sing one of Katy’s favorite songs, “Gravity” by Sara Bareilles to smiling judges. Lionel loves the control in her vocals and Katy thinks her raspy voice has power. She walks out of the audition room with a golden ticket and emotionally hugs her excited family.
Carly Moffa – A spunky girl from Williamstown, NJ who describes herself as a “mess” and says she’s always been a little different talks about her struggles regarding her mom’s Multiple sclerosis diagnosis. She sings an original song that she wrote when trying to get through her sadness about her mom and it’s called “Let the Lion Out.” She sings it while playing an acoustic guitar and gets super excited once she’s done. Lionel calls her personality “amazing” and Luke thinks her quirkiness is tremendous. Katy compares her voice to Florence and the Machine and after all judges vote yes, they ask Carly to let her mom in the room. They give her emotional mom the good news and after lots of hugs, Carly’s on her way with a chance to be the next idol.
Savannah, GA is the next stop for the auditions.
Ayana “Rose” Lawson – Ayana’s name means flower so she sometimes goes by “Rose” and talks about her rough time growing up without money. She says that music is her life and she wants to be able to help her parents with it. The 22-year-old asks for a chair so she can be comfortable before strumming her acoustic guitar and singing “Can’t Make You Love Me” by Bonnie Raitt. Lionel thinks a lot of things could be better and the competition is tough. Luke thinks her voice is good and it’s hard that they have to critique and judge her when she has a lot of tough stuff going on. Lionel wants her to polish her performance and see her a year from now. Luke encourages her to keep going for it and Katy feels the same. They don’t give her the golden ticket this time but she wants to help others and is determined to try again in the future.
Samuel Swanson – The next 28-year-old hopeful grew up on a farm in Alabama and moved to NYC to pursue his dreams. Although he doesn’t have a lot of money, he’s dressed to impress with jewelry and style. He sings “Let’s Stay Together” by Al Green with just his voice and a lot of feeling behind it. Luke can tell he’s nervous but he thinks he did incredible anyway and compares his silky voice to velvet. Lionel compares him to the iconic Luther Vandross with a voice that just comes out without much effort. They happily give him the golden ticket and he calls it the best day of his life.
The show’s back in Savannah for the next round.
Jurnee – This 18-year-old hopeful from Denver, CO talks about her realization that guys were not for her before coming out to her family. Her wife is in the military and she couldn’t be more proud of her. She sings “Rise Up” by Andra Day with a strong voice and the judges look impressed. Katy thinks she’s “wildly talented” and Lionel explains that vocal command is everything to him and she’s got it. The judges unanimously give her a yes and she calls her wife to tell her she’s going to Hollywood.
The judges are done in Savannah but Luke makes it a mission to crash a fan’s wedding and has a grand ole time dancing, singing and taking photos.
Ada Vox – The next audition comes from a singer based in San Antonio, TX, who auditioned for the show back in season 12 as a guy named Adam. She feels she wasn’t quite ready then and didn’t end up making it through to the finals but the exposure from the show brought on criticism from the public about her weight and it was really tough to encounter. She walks out on stage now dressed as the ultimate drag queen named Ada and is ready to give it another try. She explains her story to the judges and they are shocked on how different she looks compared to when she first auditioned as Adam. After belting out “House of the Rising Sun” by The Animals she blows away the judges. Katy asks how flexible her vocal range is and after finding out she can go both low and high, the “Firework” singer is filled with enthusiasm. The judges think Ada’s voice is good enough to compete as long as she’s serious. After she assures them she’s not in it to play games, they give her the golden ticket and a second chance at winning the show in a new, refreshing way.
Stay tuned for the first episode of Hollywood week which airs on Mar. 26 at 8 p.m. on ABC!