Jimmie Allen was overcome watching Mike Parker bring his legacy to life.
On Sunday’s “American Idol” Top 24 episode, the country star and mentor watched on as Parker took the stage in Hawai’i to cover his No. 1 hit “Best Shot”.
“His journey is what inspires millions of people that look like me,” the contestant said of Allen’s place in the music industry.
Parker had actually chosen Allen’s song for his Top 24 performance even before learning that Allen himself would be the episode’s mentor.
“You’re going to sing that terrible song?” Allen joked when he learned what song Parker had picked. “That song, I was the first Black country artist to start off in country and launch a career with a debut No. 1. To have you sing that song right now, bro, is so dope.”
After Parker told him his career had been “life-changing” and that getting the chance to work with him was a “dream come true,” Allen teared up, responding, “Hearing you tell me that I’m an inspiration reminds me of my purpose.”
Parker evidently did his mentor and inspiration proud onstage as well, as Allen sang along, getting emotional watching the singer perform.
After the performance, Ryan Seacrest turned to Allen, who had tears in his eyes, “For him to tell me that I mean to him what Charley Pride meant to me, it’s more than I could have asked for.”
“Thank you for making me not have to judge!” Luke Perry told him afterward. “I could just enjoy the birth of you as an artist.”
Katy Perry added, “This experience has really helped you arrive…. We don’t need to critique you; we just need to congratulate you.”