You may remember Gabby Barrett as the Idol hopeful who has an obsession with Carrie Underwood. During her initial audition, the Pennsylvania native stood before the Idol judging panel drew from her extensive knowledge of Carrie Underwood’s musical library and delivered a cover of “Good Girl.” But, the judges agreed that the voice they were hearing wasn’t Barrett’s and encouraged her to sing something that wasn’t a Carrie Underwood song.
“We’re looking for you,” Lionel Richie told Gabby. “We’re not looking for, as Luke would say, ‘the jukebox.’ Every time you try to sing a Carrie song, you go to that personality.”
“It’s like Carrie Underwood and Nicki Minaj all in the same voice,” Luke Bryan said. “When you try to sound country, you don’t sound country.”
Barrett re-grouped, knowing she only had one more chance to impress the judges. As she began to sing the traditional church hymn “His Eye Is On The Sparrow,” the judges knew that she had something special.
“Your personality is in the church song,” Richie said. “You stopped all the pretending. You took your time, you elongated the notes, you were breathing, and you were just on fire.”
The judges unanimously agreed to send Gabby to Hollywood week where she’s had the opportunity to show off her vocal range with an impressive cover of Aretha Franklin’s “Ain’t No Way.” But, during Tuesday night’s Showcase performance, Barrett was back to singing Carrie Underwood covers, a decision that concerned the judges at first.
Barrett’s rendition of “Church Bells” got off to a rough start, but as the song progressed, the 18-year old delivered in a big way and wrapped up her performance with a dynamic, over-the-top ending that we’re sure made Carrie Underwood herself proud.
The American Idol Top 24 were revealed during Tuesday night’s episode and it looks like Gabby’s decision to sing Carrie Underwood paid off as she advanced in the competition! Listen to Gabby Barrett sing “Church Bells” below and let us know if you think the judges made the right decision.