American Idol 2018 Recap – Auditions 5 Live Blog (VIDEOS)

AMERICAN IDOL - "105 (Auditions)" - "American Idol" heads to Los Angeles, Nashville, New Orleans, New York City and Savannah, as the search for AmericaÕs next superstar continues on its new home on AmericaÕs network, The ABC Television Network, SUNDAY, MARCH 25 (8:00-10:01 p.m. EDT). (ABC/Eddy Chen) ADA VOX (SAN ANTONIO, TX)

American Idol Recap – Auditions 5 Live Blog with VIDEOS

It’s the last night of American Idol 2018 auditions on ABC at 8 pm ET (March 25). Featured on the panel are veteran R&B master, Lionel Richie, pop star Katy Perry and country singer Luke Bryan. Ryan Seacrest returns to host.

We’ve got a TON of Spoiler posts linked on the left side bar. Gonna link a few below. NO SPOILER DISCUSSION ON THE LIVE BLOG. Keep spoiler chatter confined to spoilers posts’ comment sections. Giving results away during the live blog will result in an instant banning. Thank you for your cooperation.

American Idol 2018 Spoilers – Top 14 Contestant List
American Idol 2018 Spoilers – Top 24 Contestant List

Production plans a BIG surprise for Lionel. The Choir Choir Choir pop up choir conductors enlist a group of hopefuls to serenade the judge   judge with a version of his massive hit song “Hello.” And that’s after him describing his mixed feeling about covers. Ha. He did enjoy the impromptu performance, however.

Next…we cut to Pittsburgh. A hopeful is being awoken by her family holding judges masks in front of their faces. Her dad drove the family from the ‘burgh to Nashville. LONG DRIVE. 

Gabby Barrett – 17 – Pittsburgh PA – Good Girl by Carrie Underwood – She’s always been a “daddy’s girl.” He’s a maintenance man for Good Will and has sacrificed everything to make her dreams come true. She sees Idol as a whole new beginning for her family. Carrie is her Idol. Katy stops her in the middle of her performance. She’s only prepared Carrie songs! The judges feel she’s too imitative. Luke calls her a cross between Carrie and Nicki Minaj (???).  Gabby pulls out a church song to sing, finally impressing the judges. “You stopped all the pretending,” says Lionel. The judges urge her to be herself, rather than performing like a “jukebox.”  They decide to “punk” dad, pretending she’s upset, but then springing her ticket on him – 3 yeses

Caitlin  Lucia – 22 – Orange County CA – I Kissed a Girl by Katy Perry – She loves Katy. Like her, Caitlin played her first gigs at the Hotel Cafe. She sings an acoustic version of “I Kissed a Girl,” playing percussion with her foot. It’s an interesting arrangement. “I think she sang it better,” says Katy who generally doesn’t like hopefuls covering her songs. The judges feel she’s holding back. I agree, she could have pushed the  performance further. Maybe she was afraid to take too many risks in front of Katy.  The judges give Caitlin 3 yeses

We’re in New Orleans now.

It’s a montage of singers Who LOVE Elvis. Amelia Presley is Elvis’ 6th cousin and sings Heartbreak Hotel. Billy Crunk performs Wonderful World and Bailey Eubanks croons That’s Alright. It leads to….

Drake Milligan – 19 – Fort Worth TX – You Look So Good in Love by George Strait – He’s also a huge Elvis fan. He studied the singer and then began impersonating him. He’s won a few competitions. But his real calling is country music. The family business is scrap metal, but he’ not interested. Drake has not performed much as himself. But after his performance, Luke is relieved that he didn’t sound like Elvis. “You are cowboy cool,” he says. Lionel calls “the whole thing a package.” Katy thinks he “scoops” too much. “It’s a bit froggy.” But she likes him too. His voice is generic, but soothing – 3 yeses

Next, it’s a Katy Perry snack montage. She loves to eat. She grazes all day. She’s making me hungry.  A hopeful brings pizza. Katy is grateful, but her spanks don’t fit anymore. She demonstrates, attempting to pull on a pair under her dress. Oh gosh. Another reason for the internets to lose their sh*t over nothing. 

Mylon Shamble – 24 – Bradenton FL – Stand By Me – The judges allow her to continue, although they aren’t convinced of the song pick. Still, they wave golden tickets as she sings. So it’s all good. That one has a unique tone. I wanted to hear something a little more adventurous, too. – 3 yeses.

Next, it’s a montage of SUPER NERVOUS HOPEFULS.

Lee Vasi – 20 – Fayetteville NC –  Love Should Have Brought You Home by Toni Braxton – She loves loves loves Lionel Richie and the Commodores. “Zoom” is her favorite. Her parents sit on either side of her–she tears up talking about their support.  When Lionel finds out she and her dad sing it, he gets up for a little impromptu duet. They croon at one another. She’s so old school. Her smokey mature tone is impressive. But then she loses her composure and woofs the high notes at the end. Nerves might be killing her. The judges feel like she’s soooo close. Lionel feels she “went for the curls…she didn’t have too.” True, she was fine, until she started ad libbing indiscriminately. – 3 yeses

Back to Los Angeles

Time for a montage of JOKE AUDITIONS: Tory Teasley – Wearing a dress and a turban, he sings “F*ck You” by Cee Lo Green. Lucy Clearwater  dedicates “Big Butts” to Luke. Jarom Eubanks warbles “Losing My Religion,” much to Katy’s delight.

Michael J. Woodward – 20 – Philadelphia PA – Make it Rain by Ed Sheeran – He’s living in Los Angeles, presently. He’s SO NERVOUS at first, Lionel jumps up to rub his shoulders. When he settles down, Michael belts out a raw, soulful version of “Make it Rain.” The judges love his innocent quality. They understand he’s green, but feel he’s full of untapped talent.  He’s nervous and full of adrenaline, yes, but also fearless. Definitely worth 3 yeses.

Katy gives a lecture on the importance of being the TOTAL PACKAGE

Brielle Rathbun – 18 – Johnson City TN – Gravity by Sara Bareilles – She teaches choreography. She comes from a big family–many of them adopted from Africa. Her family call themselves “The Funbuns.” Her mother (maybe overwhelmed?) pulled away and left the family a few years ago. Her dad is a rock, she says. She gives Luke a few dance lessons, including how to hip thrust.  Brielle has that look Katy believes is so important, but can sing too. Her tone and phrasing are very pretty. Katy likes her “smokey, raspy tone.” She says Brielle isn’t “linear.” But I don’t think this audition actually revealed a capacity to let loose. Can she? – 3 yeses.

Carly Moffa – 25 – Williamstown NJ –  I’d Let the Lion Out (Original) –  “I would definitely describe myself as a mess,” she says. She was a different child. In middle school her very supportive mom was diagnosed with MS. She’s had many surgeries since. Currently, Carly is pursuing her musical dream in  Nashville. I like her voice, but the original song is a repetitive mish mosh. Lionel calls her vocal quality “amazing.” Luke calls her personality “quirky, crazy.” Katy compares her to Florence + the Machine. Mom is invited in to hand Carly her golden ticket – 3 yeses

American Idol season 10 singer Pia Toscano is this week’s Icon brought to you by Zyrtec! 

Ayana Rose Lawson – 22 – Chicago IL –  I Can’t Make You Love Me by Bonnie Raitt – She grew up in a Chicago suburb, but her family has been homeless for 4 or 5 years. She used to play basketball, but she didn’t have the money to buy new equipment. “It’s tough…but you get used to it after awhile,” she says, resignedly. Music gets her through the tough times. Before her audition, she requests a seat. She’s definitely nervous.  After settling herself down on a stool, she accompanies herself guitar. Her performance is very heartfelt, if not remarkable. What’s interesting about this segment–it was set up like an audition that will blow viewers away. Instead, Ayana is just OK and the judges all say no. They let her down easy-explaining there are better singers in the competition. They encourage her to keep working and then come back another season.  It serves as an example of the judges not allowing a backstory to dictate their decisions. – 3 nos.

Samuel Swanson – 28 –  Let’s Stay Together by Al Green – Festooned in a black turban, Samuel grew up on a farm but wanted more. Every day was milking cows. “I always wanted to see more than a tree!” He picked up and left for Harlem. He’s the oldest of 5 and is the first of his family to leave the small town. A sweet, smooth soulful tone impressed the judges. Luke notes his nerves, but compares his voice to velvet. Katy suggests breath and control work. Lionel compares him to Luther Vandross – 3 yeses.

And now a montage of NOS, including a Michael Jackson impersonator. 

Damiano Scarfi – 19 – Middleton CT – More than a Feeling by Boston – He’s a heavy metal rocker. Oh boy. He screeches his way through Boston’s “More Than a Feeling” and it’s very very painful. Luke calls it a “Time capsule moment.”  Luke says he tore up the skating rink to Boston. Katy would love to borrow his red white and blue jacket. BUT IT’S A NO “Can I have 2 advil please?” asks Katy after he leaves the room – 3 nos.

Now we’re in Savannah! 

Jurnee – 18 – Denver CO – Rise Up by Andra Day –  She started writing music at 7. After a period of hiding, she came out as gay to her family as a teen. She is married. Too young to be married! Her wife is in the Army and is set to be deployed soon. Her tone is strong and pretty. And when she hits the chorus, she reveals a big range and lovely head voice. Luke makes a corny “Journey” joke that includes the song “Don’t Stop Believing.” Jurnee rolls her eyes like she’s heard that one before. Katy calls her a “little bird” and says “you sing so effortlessly.” Lionel admires her control. – 3 yeses

After the Savannah auditions wrapped, Luke crashed a wedding! The bride and groom are fans. 

Adam Sanders aka Ada Vox – 24 – San Antonio TX – House of the Rising Sun – Adam is upfront about his prior experience on Idol. He made it to Hollywood season 12 but was cut at the Top 50. He wasn’t ready yet, he says. After he was inundated with social media messages mocking his weight, sexuality and voice. It really got to him. He had dark thoughts, disappeared from the world for awhile. But eventually, he recovered by reinventing himself.  The judges check out a photo of that “chubby little Latino boy” on Idol and they can’t believe the transformation. Ada demonstrates a big growly voice. She can also sing really low notes and possesses a solid falsetto. The judges are so impressed. Katy wants to make sure Ada is serious about being a pop star. She is! Lionel feels that she has a clear understanding of who she is. “You’ve thrown me a country boy curveball!” declares Luke. Ada can’t believe the response. “It’ everything I wanted and more,” she gushes. For me, I’m in Katy’s camp. Does Ada really know who she is as an artist?  Despite the lip service, I don’t think we really know that yet – 3 yeses.

The show concludes with a montage of auditioners from the past 5 (!!!) episodes.

And then, of course, a look ahead to the dreaded Hollywood week, which begins tomorrow night (March 26). See you there!

About mj santilli 34829 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!