18-year-old Caleb Lee Hutchinson of Dallas, GA made a good first impression with Bryan from the start thanks to his Southern drawl and country-clad look. The minute that the Georgia boy began to praise Bryan for his contribution to country music these days, Hutchinson took it upon himself to show admiration by way of talking just like the famous singer.
Doing a fake radio plug in Bryan’s signature speaking voice, each of the judges’ eyes lit up in excitement. Bryan gave it a go as well, with Hutchinson claiming he did it better than the original. Earning a quick laugh from the table, the contestant began to sing “If It Hadn’t Been for Love” by the Steeldrivers and enticed Bryan even further.
Lionel Richie complimented Hutchinson’s depth within his vocals, which Katy Perry concurred, but Bryan gave a bit of constructive criticism by advising him to focus on vibrato at the right moments instead of a consistent pattern. Nevertheless, Hutchinson still earned himself a golden ticket to Hollywood with a unanimous positive decision.
New episodes of American Idol air every Sunday and Monday night at 8 p.m. EST on ABC.