The Season 20 American Idol winner released his cover of the Rihanna hit, which finds the fast-rising star putting his signature country vocals on full display to a countrified instrumental of the popular R&B track.
“I feel like my performance of ‘Stay’ was one of my bigger moments on the show, and after seeing the way fans reacted, I knew I wanted to put a Country version of the song out into the world,” Thompson shared of the cover.
In addition to sharing the cover, Thompson also released a visualizer for the tune. The clip finds Thompson singing the Rihanna cover on the front porch of a Tennessee home, allowing the emotion of the song to truly come to life through his captivating performance.
Watch Noah Thompson’s “Stay” visualizer below.
Noah Thompson First Performed The Cover On Idol During The Showstopper Round
During the Showstopper Round on American Idol, Thompson performed the Rihanna hit and had Idol judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie raving over his “magic” vocals.
At the time, Bryan admitted that he thought Thompson’s song choice was a bit “wild,” but Thompson explained that the song reminded him of home as it’s a tune he would always sing with his girlfriend. The 20-year-old singer also added that his choice to sing the Rihanna tune “shows them what else I could do.”
His performance earned a standing ovation and praise from Bryan, Perry and Richie, who were swooning over his vocal abilities.
“I really want to applaud you on your song choices,” Bryan told Thompson at the time. “You got a magic quality going on in your voice, and what I told somebody, I said I’d love to have ten minutes with you just to really fine tune to where you have that magic from the top to the end of the song. If you could figure out how to really hold that because no one is expecting what’s about to come out of your mouth when you start singing and that’s what the crowd did when you were out there, they went ‘holy crap, this is awesome.’ So you got to really use that in your favor and you got to really get there quick.”
Thompson’s cover of Rihanna’s “Stay” during the Idol Showstopper Round ultimately earned him a spot in the Top 24, which then led him to win Season 20 of the show.
He is currently writing new music in his home state of Kentucky while frequently visiting Music City to promote his debut single “One Day Tonight.”
“[Songwriting is] definitely something that I’m looking forward to doing now that I have the time because I’m not working an 80-hour job every week anymore. I can finally sit down and try to write some songs,” he recently told Music Mayhem.
Writing music isn’t something the Kentucky native is used to, but Idol gave him the boost he needed to get started on honing in on those skills. “Being on that show has definitely helped me become a better writer. It’s given me something to say.”
On Friday (July 29), the fast-rising country star will perform at The Hutton Hotel in Downtown Nashville alongside Chayce Beckham, Dillon James, Fritz Hager, Francisco Martin, Grace Leer, Casey Bishop, Allegra Miles and Laci Kaye Booth.
Tickets for Thompson and his Idol alum’s show at the Hutton are available now at AnalogNashville.com.