Caleb Kennedy’s gritty country vocals truly shined during his American Idol audition. Not only did his vocals shine but also his songwriting abilities that thoroughly impressed the Idol judges.
The 16-year-old South Carolina mullet-bearing native auditioned with an original self-penned song called “Nowhere,” which truly put his knack for songwriting and his stunning vocal abilities on full display.
Kennedy admitted that he had some trouble writing a second verse for the song. However, as Katy Perry told him, he needs to finish writing the song as it will take him somewhere.
“You better finish that song ‘Nowhere,’ because it’s gonna take you somewhere,” Perry praised Kennedy’s self-penned track.
The contestant also admitted that he lacks self-confidence a lot with his voice, but says he is a good songwriter.
“Listen man, here’s the deal, you ain’t the only kid out there that’s lacking self confidence these days. Your voice tells a story far beyond a 16-year-old kid,” Luke Bryan said.
His original single earned him a golden ticket to Hollywood after receiving praise from Idol judges Bryan, Perry and Lionel Richie.
“You got something real special,” Perry added. “You’re a real songwriter but you got a grit and gravel and crackle in your voice that says ‘I’m in pain someone, please come save me through this song.’ And there’s a lot of people like you, and a lot of people want to process whatever the heck they’re going through by listening to your music. If you want to change your reality the power is in your hands, right there with that guitar.”
“You have mastered at such a young age of 16, a storytellers voice,” Richie said. “The three of us, think you’re it and whatever you thought you heard when you were growing up they were lying to you cause they were jealous of you.”
“Young man, I have great expectations for your life,” Richie added.
Watch his full audition below.
Tune in on Sunday, March 7 at 8 p.m. EST on ABC to watch Kennedy’s and other auditions on American Idol.