Throwback to These Unforgettable Country ‘American Idol’ Auditions
American Idol has produced its share of country stars during its 15-season run on Fox and now they have the opportunity to create even more Music City staples with the revelation that the singing competition will be revived on its new network home, ABC.
“American Idol is a pop-culture staple that left the air too soon,” said ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey. “ABC is the right home to reignite the fan base. We are thrilled viewers will once again share in these inspiring stories of people realizing their dreams.”
In celebration of the good news, we’re throwing it back to the humble beginnings of the series’ alumnus by taking a look at their original auditions for the show.
Carrie Underwood – Season 4 Winner (2005)
Before Carrie Underwood became a country music powerhouse, she was a nervous performer just trying to get her foot in the door – even if that meant trying to impress judges with her ability to cluck like a chicken. She earned the judges’ approval and her ticket to Hollywood with a rendition of Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me.” What was Underwood most excited about after her audition? Being able to fly on a plane.
Lauren Alaina – Season 10 Runner-Up (2011)
Just this year, Lauren Alaina was able to celebrate her very first No. 1 country single – six years after her American Idol debut. Looking back at her audition, it’s endearing how nervous she was to sing her heart out for the judges. Alaina performed “Like We Never Loved at All” and knocked the whole room off their feet. “Best we’ve seen all day in Nashville, I’m telling you I’m blown away,” Jackson said to a giddy Alaina. “I’m sitting here like ‘She could have sang the whole thing’ and we’re enjoying it that much.”
Scotty McCreery – Season 10 Winner (2011)
At just 16-years-old Scotty McCreery auditioned for American Idol and launched his career. Prior to his performance, he self-describes himself as an “all-American boy,” and throughout his career it seems like that has never changed. In his attempt to impress Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez and Randy Jackson, McCreery sang Josh Turner’s “Your Man.” His baritone voice won the judges’ attention, but they wanted to see what more he can do. To solidify his ticket to Hollywood he pulled out a cover of Travis Tritt’s “Put Some Drive in Your Country,” and fast forward six years later, he just released his latest single “Five More Minutes.”
Kellie Pickler – Season 5 Top 6 (2006)
Kellie Pickler didn’t have the easiest upbringing. Prior to her Idol audition, the North Carolina – native revealed that her mom left her when she was just two-years-old and her dad had been in and out of jail her whole life. Despite the deck being stacked against her, Pickler followed her dreams and made her way to American Idol. She won over the judges’ by performing “Since You’ve Been Gone” by American Idol alum Kelly Clarkson as well as Martina McBride’s “Broken Wing.” Pickler’s bubbly personality and second-to-none voice landed her a shot at Hollywood and an eventual record deal in Nashville.
Kelly Clarkson – Season 1 Winner (2001)
The original American Idol was crowned 16 years ago and Kelly Clarkson has been a star ever since. She was just 20-years-old when she auditioned for the inaugural season and wasn’t sure the whole singing thing was going to work out. Prior to standing in front of the judges, she even admitted that she had a backup plan of being a fashion designer. But it’s safe to say she didn’t need it.
These are just a few of the American Idol auditions we’ve been graced with from over the years and we can’t wait to see more. There is no confirmation on whether or not Ryan Seacrest will be returning as the host of the series, but ABC hopes to have it back my March 2018.