The final tickets to Hollywood were handed out on Thursday's American Idol, and the last singer to book a seat on the plane reminded Harry Connick Jr. of … Barbara Mandrell?
Referring to the popular '70s and '80s country singer and TV star, Connick told Tessa Kate, a 25-year-old from Branson, Mo., that she had the same timeless "vibe."
Kate sang "Folsom Prison Blues" by Johnny Cash and although Jennifer Lopez said the guitar-playing performer "almost went into chipmunk territory" with her high-pitched notes, Keith Urban said, "You've got your own lane."
Keith Urban learned how a few encouraging words he spoke backstage after an awards show inspired a contestant who auditioned for American Idol on Wednesday.
Casey Thrasher, 22, a father of two young children from Tuscaloosa, Ala., recalled his unexpected yet inspirational meeting with Urban after the CMAs in 2012.
"You were humble enough to come over and speak to me. You said, 'I believe in you, brother,'" Thrasher said, before launching, appropriately enough, into an emotional performance of "Believe" by Brooks & Dunn.
Jennifer Lopez has mellowed out a bit when it comes to rigorous exercise. But old habits die hard – and she admits to being conflicted about letting go of the drive to look perfect.
The second night of American Idol featured a few familiar faces and a whole lot of characters.
For the first time, a second-generation Idol hopeful earned a golden ticket: 15-year-old Tristen Langley – the son of season one's rocker girl Nikki McKibbin, who finished third behind Kelly Clarkson and Justin Guarini – sang a cool version of Sublime's "Santeria" to earn his way to Hollywood.
If the season 13 premiere of American Idol is any indication, a few things are already clear: The unlucky judge juju is gone, guitar-playing singers will rule Hollywood, and America is likely to be wild about Harry Connick Jr.
With all eyes on the judging panel after last year's Mariah Carey-Nicki Minaj diva drama, returning judge Keith Urban joined Jennifer Lopez, who's back after a transformative year away, and the duo not only oozed likeability and rapport but their star power wowed most contestants.
Twelve years ago, Kelly Clarkson was crowned the first American Idol.
Now, the journey starts all over again for thousands of singers who hope they have what it takes to become the 13th winner of the Fox singing competition.