American Idol 2022 Recap – Season 20 Auditions 5
The landmark American Idol season 20 continues tonight with week 5 auditions from Austin, Los Angeles and Nashville. Judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan along with host Ryan Seacrest will introduce a new crop young hopefuls. Who will snag that golden ticket to Hollywood?
In a new twist, one contestant from each city will be awarded the supercharged Platinum Ticket, which allows the artist to sit out the first round of Hollywood Week. The last Platinum Ticket winner is revealed tonight.
American Idol 2022 Auditions 5: Meet The Contestants (Photos)
Spoilers: Top 24 Season 20 Contestant List
What Did Top 24 Sing in Hawaii? (Spoilers)
Showcase Contestant List and Song Choices (Spoilers)
Reminder: Comments on this post are a SPOILER FREE ZONE. Do not spoil outcomes. Keep spoiler discussion confined to specific spoiler posts.
Tobias Hill – 26 – Como North Carolina
Knocks Me Off My Feet by Stevie Wonder – He’s a church music director and middle school music teacher. His students support him via Zoom. Ultimately, he wants to show the world that he’s an entertainer.
His voice is smooth, but his vibrato is shaky. It’s probably nerves. His singing is animated, and joyful, which the song requires. It’s a sweet performance. He overdoes the runs a bit, however. Katy notices his shaky vocal. She advises him to “shake it out.” He takes the seal for a second song “Uptown Funk.” But he dances instead of singing, because he doesn’t know the lyrics. He does the moonwalk. He’s very hyped up. Luke says his vocals aren’t 100 percent, but believes his talent is worthy. Lionel likes his “whole package” and the enthusiasm of his showmanship. Katy likes his dancing and believes he has the fundamentals. – 3 yeses
Morgan Gruber – 17 – Fombell PA
Can’t Be Loved by Elle King– She lives on 12 acres and loves fishing and riding four wheelers. But she’s dang tired of PENNSYLTUCKY. She wants to be a singer.
While she comes across as a country girl, Morgan is very soulful. Her performance is slow and deliberate. She reminds me a little of Bonnie Raitt. She doesn’t nail the high note. But her range is still impressive. The judges give her a standing ovation. Katy calls it “amazing.” She has no critiques. Lionel likes that she has her own style. Katy and Luke think she’ll make the Top 20 at least. Morgan explains that she auditioned for her grandma who passed away two years ago.
Kimmie Caraffa – 25 – Cleveland OH
How Do I Live by Leann Rimes – She instantly refers to Luke Bryan as “lookie pookie.” She’s a stan, to say the least. He actually heard her yelling for him outside. Calm down, honey! Kimmie has a baby girl at home, and she wants to prove that she can do anything.
The voice over from Kimmie sharing about her daughter as she sings is a very annoying technique. She’s a good singer, except she totally whiffs a high note. Maybe she shouldn’t have been screaming for Luke? Or talking to people? The judges are sympathetic, but wonder if she’s ready for American Idol. Katy thinks it will be hard for her to compete. “When you lose you learn,” says Lionel. They all say no. Actually, other than that messed up note, she’s better than some singers the judges advanced. – 3 nos
Kaylin Roberson – 23 – Raleigh NC/Matt Gorman – 23 – Philadelphia PA
Fast Forever (Original Song) – The next two singers, Kaylin and Matt, are a dating couple who audition together. They both are pursuing music careers in Nashville and love to perform, especially together. It sounds like Kaylin has been grinding longer than Matt. Luke jokes about the high breakup rate when one couple makes it through and the other does not. Whoops.
Matt has a raspy voice. But Kaylin has soul and range and kinda blows him out of the water. She’s propping him up. He’s got pitch issues. They harmonize nicely, however. Luke thinks they compliment each other, but notes that Kaylin’s vocal really cuts through. He calls Matt more “laid back.” The judges agree that he needs to push more. But, Luke thinks Kaylin could be a rival to Platinum Ticket holder HunterGirl. Luke and Katy say no to Matt, while Kaylin gets 3 yeses. Who didn’t see that result coming? Kaylin is happy but also very sad.
Saylor – 18 – Newalla OK
All I Want by Kodaline – A video of her at 10 singing “Tattooed Heart” went viral after her dad uploaded it to social media. Her dad was her everything. Sadly, three years ago dad moved to Kentucky to marry the woman he cheated with on her mom. Because he found her on Saylor’s fan page, she blames herself (NO!!!). So, in the end, he’s not that great after all. She hasn’t seen him in a year. She wants to prove that she can do it without him.
Her fake eyelashes are very distracting. Her voice cracks at several points. This performance is a hot mess, but it’s probably nerves. She needs to calm down. All that attention at a young age, due to a father who ended up being a creep. Dang. I’m rooting for her, but this performance is not it. Lionel shares that his voice goes out on stage sometimes. Luke loves her voice. The judges agree that her emotion made up for the mistakes. The judges advance her, but it’s not the right decision. Give her a year. The backstory won out in this instance – 3 yeses
Luke and his wife love to prank each other.
Do you care? I sure don’t. Why waste time on one of their pranks, instead of featuring another singer. A “fake” contestant, Skyler Dixon, sings “My Church” by Maren Morris while Luke’s wife, dressed as a stagehand, acts obnoxiously, snacking, eating and drinking and making noise. Katy is in on the joke. Hardee har har. Also, pretty sure that Skyler Dixon is Colton Dixon’s (Season 10 and 11) sister, who has auditioned for Idol 2 or 3 times in the past. She never made it past Hollywood.
Cameron Whitcomb – 18 – Kamloops British Columbia CANADA
Rock, Salt and Nails by Waylon Jennings – Cameron works as a Harley-Davidson mechanic, and hoo boy that Canadian accent is thick! Katy wonders if he’ll sing with an accent. It goes in and out, Cameron says. He demonstrates a back flip for no reason.
For the record, he sings Waylon with a southern twang. He’s got a little cry in his voice. He’s emotional, but effortless. He does a little bow afterward. Luke is not sure he knows what he’s doing. In fact, Cameron has never performed in front of people. Lionel loves his tone, but thinks he’s not “organized” yet. Lionel says no. Katy and Lionel say yes. I agree with Katy “there’s something there.” – 1 no 2 yeses
Emyrson Flora – 16 – Cleveland OH
The Joke by Brandi Carlile – She grew up singing in her room for her parents and can’t believe she’s made it to American Idol.
It’s hard to believe she can imbue a song with so much mature emotion at only 16 years old. Production did that voice over thing, and I wish Emyrson would have been allowed to just sing. Her voice is incredible. But the judges indicate that the back half of the song was better than the beginning. Katy thinks she has a lot of raw talent. Lionel liked the last part of the song, so he wants to roll the dice. They all decide to give Emyrson a chance. She promises a “fully cooked” singer in Hollywood – 3 yeses.
Sir Blayke – 28 – Chicago IL
Dive by Ed Sheeran/Original Song – He lives in Los Angeles now. His mom was a choir director at church. But growing up was hard. At 18 he headed to Atlanta with 100 dollars in his pocket. He became homeless. Later, he moved to Los Angeles and works as a songwriter. He’s had a few placements.
He starts off the song like a conversation, but ramps up. By the chorus, his voice almost cracks. His phrasing is interesting, but the vocal isn’t perfect. Katy asks for an original song. He sings a’cappella, making the song hard to grasp. He could dial back the runs. Luke thinks he’s trying too hard, he’s not sure. Lionel hopes he’s a quick study. He loves the texture of his voice. He advises to cut the “curls.” Katy liked the original song, but she needs more connection. Luke says no. Lionel and Katy say yes. – 1 no 2 yeses.
A bunch of NOS
First, it’s a singing chihuahua. I think that gal and her dog auditioned for AGT a few years ago. Next is Jessarae, 26 from Santa Monica who performs “Wonderful World” backed by a weird windchimey thing. Kira Rizavi, 20 from New York City screeches her way through her song. Marlene Mendoza, 28 from Bronx New York is singing some weird version of Death Metal.
Carly Mikeal – 24 – Simi Valley, CA
Your Song by Elton John – She works as a dog groomer by day, but has been singing all her life. Her dad, a musician, is there to play piano for her. “If I make it. Dog grooming can wait,” she says.
Her phrasing is good, and when she finally shows her range, it’s impressive. She uses her falsetto well. It’s a good interpretation of a classic song. I get mad when singers mess this one up. Luke thinks she’s a potential star. Lionel likes her phrasing, but finds it choppy. I get his point, she’d be even better if her phrases flowed more smoothly. – 3 yeses.
Jay Copeland – 23 – Salisbury MD – Austin Platinum Ticket
Signed, Sealed Delivered by Stevie Wonder – He graduated with a music degree two years ago. He studied acting in grad school. But his school forced him to choose his fellowship, or American Idol. He gave up a fellowship. Yikes.
He performs with a ton of personality. But his voice is wild. Too many runs and he’s got pitch problems here and there. Because he got the Platinum Ticket, I expected more. But he’s a ball of sunshine on stage. It’s not a perfect performance, but he grooves in the pocket, which is tough for many young singers. Lionel can’t stop gushing. “You owned it…you were having so much fun.” He says, “Your talent is off the chain. You’ve got nothing to study.” Luke thinks he can electrify a crowd. Katy thinks he can skip a day of school. She points to the wall. He gets the Platinum Ticket. Because he’s worth all the platinum, she says.
Skyler Maxey-Wert – 25 – Lancaster PA
For All We Know by Donny Hathaway – He’s a ballet dancer in Dresden Germany. His dad was a mime. At 18, he moved straight to Europe to start his ballet career. But he has always loved to sing. Brandon Boyd from Incubus reached out to him after he posted songs on Instagram.
He does not look like his voice. If my eyes were closed, I’d guess the vocal belonged to a 30+ Black singer. His has some pitch things, and his vibrato is very wide, but his sound and phrasing are interesting. He needs some work, though. He’s only performed at open mics. Lionel is impressed. Luke likes the way he holds his notes. Katy wants to see dancing. He does a pirouette. Luke trips. “I pulled a kidney.” Then Katy and Luke attempt the lift from Dirty Dancing. Dirty Disaster! – 3 yeses
Next Sunday after the Oscars, ABC will air an hour long episode. It looks to be a lot of clips, but there might be a few new auditions, Maybe. On Monday, Hollywood Week begins!