GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOTV)-Sunday night’s episode of American Idol was a real tear-jerker. The remaining contestants sang their hearts out to their loved ones, Coldplay blessed fans with an exclusive performance of their new song, and Idol fans and judges said goodbye to two hopefuls during eliminations.
In celebration of Mother’s Day, Willie Spence, Chayce Beckham, Casey Bishop, Grace Kinstler, Arthur Gunn, Hunter Metts, and Caleb Kennedy took the stage to perform two songs. The first came from Coldplay’s songbook, and the second was to honor their families. And in true American Idol-style, the Top 7 were mentored by Coldplay’s lead singer, Chris Martin, and received feedback from Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie.
Watch each performance below!
Casey Bishop may only 16, but she knows how to command the stage with her dynamic voice and energy.
The Florida native covered Coldplay’s “Paradise” for her Top 7 performance, and it was a big win amongst the judges!
“It was so great to see you let loose towards the middle of that song,” Perry said. She even suggested that Bishop could let loose even more. “I want more tornado, but that was perfect!”
Luke also noted that Bishop’s performance was an A-plus. “I’ve never heard you hit a bad note this whole competition.”
Bishop returned to blow the judges away with her cover of “Ironic” by Alanis Morissette.
Lionel Richie got straight to the point, noting that every part of Bishop’s performance was spot on! “Your stage presence, right on the money. Your song selection, right on the money. And of course, the fact that you were having so much fun, we love you.”
Chayce Beckham sang Coldplay’s hit song “Magic,” and it was indeed magical! Beckham made the song his own, adding a unique spin that was easy on the ears and enjoyable to watch!
Bryan instantly picked up on Beckham’s artistry, giving him props for embracing his authentic music style. “There’s just so much artistic signature things that you have.” He even alluded to Beckham’s successful progress throughout the competition. “It’s so fun to see you from the guy that came in during the audition to where you are now is remarkable, buddy.”
Beckham’s second song pulled at the heartstrings. He performed an original song called “Momma,” which he wrote during Hollywood week.
The song’s lyrics were sincere, emotional and super relatable. Richie even suggested Beckham get it on the radio as soon as possible!
“Listen, you had me crying on your song. As a songwriter, I’m going to say put that song out now. That’s a smash record,” he said.
Willie Spence is a dynamic force! The 21-year-old caretaker captivated the entire audience with his rendition of “Yellow” by Coldplay.
It was so powerful that each judge agreed Spence’s performance was more than just a Top 7 presentation. It was a “religious experience”, as Richie commented.
“Willie you were back in that connected place. It was that place, it’s in between heaven and earth,” Katy added.
Bryan even touched on Spence’s longevity and she reflected on the mark he’s made in the competition. “I will cherish forever, the times I’ve gotten to watch you perform like 20 feet away from me man.”
Spence returned to the stage to sing “You Are So Beautiful” by Joe Cocker for his mom who watched via zoom and it was so beautiful!
His mom was brought to tears and the judges were left speechless.
“I can’t even tell you the amazing qualities I hear in your voice. It’s truly remarkable to watch. Great job,” Bryan said.
Richie was even blown away! “The way you navigate the notes man. It’s unbelievable,” he commented.
There’s no song that Caleb Kennedy can’t handle and he proved it on Sunday night! The high school student added a country-rock spin to “Violet Hill” by Coldplay.
It was different, it was engaging and it pushed Kennedy out of his comfort zone. The singer has noted that he’s more of a songwriter, but the judges gave him a quick confidence boost!
Bryan suggested that Kennedy never sell himself or his talents short. “Don’t ever tell yourself you’re not a singer. You are a singer and you’re a songwriter. Don’t let those demons in. Just be that character that you walked out and gave us the first 20-30 seconds today.”
Richie also stepped in adding that Kennedy’s confidence “dipped a little bit”, but reminded the singer that he’s more than enough.
It looks like Caleb took the judge’s advice and ran with it because he showed more of himself during his Mother’s Day dedication performance. Singing his original song, “Mama Said”, not only did he showcase his vulnerability, but he even made a big move! For the first time in the competition, Kennedy removed his hat, and many fans quickly pointed it out!
Most importantly, Kennedy proved he has what it takes to become the next American Idol.
“Caleb, you, my friend, are a true anomaly. A true anomaly. To be 15 years old, to be able to write songs like that, that truly connect like a 50-year-old wise man wrote it, it’s amazing,” Luke said.
“It’s so gifted man. Put that song out. It’s a smash record man,” Richie added.
“I just want to say as a new mom, I think you wearing your heart on your sleeve looks really good on you,” Perry commented. “You look brighter and better!”
Comeback winner, Arthur Gunn made the most of his American Idol performances. During his rendition of “In My Place” by Coldplay, he proved that he’s earned his place in the competition!
Luke complimented the singer’s free spirit! “What’s so cool about you is you just walk to the beat of your own drum. And, you do things your way.”
“You are a cherished soul in my book because anyone who can stand before the writer and say I’ll change the melody and I’ll change a few words too and I’ll just kind of make it mine, it’s called an artist my friend. And, you are dead on your artistry,” Richie said.
Gunn’s second selection, “Simple Man” by Lynyrd Skynyrd was dedicated to all the moms watching, but he received the biggest ovation from his mom who joined via zoom.
“If you got a standing ovation from your mother, you’ve made it already,” Richie declared!
Grace Kinstler proved she’s more than a powerhouse singer! She’s confident, poised and is also not afraid to be vulnerable.
Her cover of Coldplay’s “Fix You” was emotional and riveting.
Perry pointed out Kinstler’s versatility. “That was intimacy. It was breaking through the facade of show business. It was like really connected. I think you’ve finally arrived with that song, and always remember when you’re vulnerable and you show yourself, your vulnerability is your strength.”
Kinstler stunned once again while singing Adele’s hit single, “When We Were Young”.
Between her fiery red dress, stunning vocals and song choice, the judges were very impressed and repeatedly mentioned her performance, “was just like a movie.”
One of America’s heartthrobs, Hunter Metts, illuminated the stage with a cover of Coldplay’s “Everglow.”
Perry hinted at Metts’ growing popularity, mentioning she receives countless texts about Hunter’s status in the competition. “It’s out of my hands, you actually have to vote if you want Hunter to win.” She then boosted Hunter’s confidence by reassuring him that he’s “beloved by the world.”
There were several original songs dedicated to moms throughout the night and Metts performed his own number too!
In his original song called “The River”, Metts left a great impression on the judges and his mom through his smooth and passionate vocals.
Bryan said it best. “10 out of 10 incredible, buddy!”
And the Top 5 contestants are…
America has voted and the Top 7 has officially been chopped down to the Top 5.
Casey Bishop, Chayce Beckham, Willie Spence, Caleb Kennedy and Grace Kinstler are American Idol’s Top 5!
Coldplay debuts their new hit single, “Higher Power”
In an exclusive performance, Coldplay debuted their new song on Sunday night! In case you missed it, check it out below!
Catch a new episode of American Idol on Sunday, May 16 at 8 p.m. on My ABC WOTV4!