Caleb Kennedy Slays ‘American Idol’ Judges With Original Audition Song [WATCH]
The new season of American Idol is currently underway, and there is a major new talent coming to TV for fans of country music: A young, aspiring singer named Caleb Kennedy wows the Idol judges with an original song during his audition, which will air on Sunday night (March 7).
The 16-year-old traditional country singer from South Carolina absolutely floors the judging panel of Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan with an original song titled "Nowhere." His demonstrates wisdom beyond his years in the song, not only in the world-weary lyrics but also in his exceptionally finely-honed delivery.
Kennedy's raspy, dead-in-tune vocals and rock-solid acoustic guitar accompaniment are just the icing when it comes to his performance of the song, which plays like the work of a world-class songwriter who's decades older. He laments that he doesn't want to "make money at a job that no one likes just to pay the bills and get by / Try to move on / Fight off my wrong / Hop in the truck / Just to go nowhere."
The stunning audition completely confounds the judges, with Bryan offering to help him write a second verse on the spot when he confesses the song isn't even finished, while Perry advises, "You'd better finish that song "Nowhere," because that song's gonna take you somewhere."
When Kennedy admits that he lacks confidence in his voice, Bryan admonishes him, "Your voice tells a story far beyond a 16-year-old kid."
"You've got something real special," Perry tells him, praising both his songwriting and his "grit," while Richie says, "You have mastered. at the young age of 16, a storyteller's voice ... the three of us think you're it." With that, they vote unanimously for Kennedy to go to Hollywood.
American Idol airs on Sunday nights at 8PM ET on ABC.
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