American Idol premiered its 20th Season Sunday night and one hopeful contestant is already capturing viewers’ hearts.
Noah Thompson, a Kentucky resident, grew up watching the reality singing competition and found himself auditioning in front of judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry, and Lionel Richie even though he was “completely against” the idea of being on the show.
The 19-year-old construction worker revealed, “It wasn’t my idea in the first place. I was completely against it, to be honest.”
In an interview with the Lexington Herald-Leader, he noted that his friend from work, Arthur Johnson, filmed a video of him singing and submitted it to the show. Thompson was called in to audition for the all-star judges, which he described as being a little bit scary and “so unreal.”
“I’ve been watching these guys on TV for the longest time,” he said during the telephone interview Friday. “To be there actually doing it … it was insane.”
Thompson’s childhood consisted of watching his father perform in a regional Southern rock band, which sparked his interest in music. He picked up the guitar at age 13 and dreamt of being a musician until that dream “faded away.”
Music “was something that I fell in love with,” Thompson noted. “My whole life, it was kind of a dream.”
But when his son was born nine months ago, the dream “just faded away.”
“It’s not about you anymore,” he said. “I’ve grown up working labour. To me, playing music for a living, it would just be insane. It would be just an awesome opportunity that not everybody gets.”
For his audition, Thompson sang “Giving You Up” by “The Voice”‘s former contestant Kameron Marlowe.
Although country music and fellow Kentuckian Chris Stapleton are his favourites, Thompson enjoys “a mix” of styles, noting that he listens “to all types of different genres of music.”
You can watch Thompson’s journey unfold on “American Idol” Season 20.