Music iSIDOL

Music iSIDOL

Season 1

Something extraordinary happened throughout the first season of AMERICAN IDOL®. Justin Guarini and Kelly Clarkson came together in the finale to learn whose life would change forever. But even then, no one could have predicted its everlasting impact on the music industry and on the lives of everyone it touched. Now we know. Music is… IDOL®.

Premiere Date: June 11, 2002

Tamyra Gray

× Song

"A HOUSE IS NOT A HOME"

Original Performer

LUTHER VANDROSS

Year

1981

Billboard

71/100

"A HOUSE IS NOT A HOME" by LUTHER VANDROSS

Tamyra sang this song on Burt Bacharach night. Her performance brought Paula to tears, and Simon said it was one of the best performances he’d ever seen on TV. Although she didn’t win IDOL®, she left the show with a record deal and America’s hearts.

Kelly Clarkson

× Song

"NATURAL WOMAN"

Original Performer

ARETHA FRANKLIN

Year

1967

Billboard

8/100

"NATURAL WOMAN" by ARETHA FRANKLIN

Kelly Clarkson’s sparkle was lost among the shine of Tamyra Gray and Justin Guarini. Until THIS song and THAT note.

×

Fun Fact

Over 110 million votes were cast over the inaugural season - the majority of which were on landlines!

Kelly Clarkson

× Song

"AT LAST"

Original Performer

ETTA JAMES

Year

1961

Billboard

47/100

"AT LAST" by ETTA JAMES

The first time the judges heard Kelly Clarkson was through her rendition of “At Last.” The powerhouse returned to IDOL® in Season 14 for a triumphant performance of her original audition song.

Kelly Clarkson

× Song

"I SURRENDER"

Original Performer

CELINE DION

Year

2002

Billboard

unranked

"I SURRENDER" by CELINE DION

Despite not being able to speak before the show, Kelly Clarkson dazzled the audience with this hit from Celine Dion. The judges were amazed by her ability, and Simon Cowell said this catapulted her to the same league as Celine Dion and Mariah Carey.

×

Fun Fact

Ryan Seacrest had a co-host! Brian Dunkleman shared the stage with Ryan, but left after the first season.

Winner

Kelly Clarkson

× Song

"A MOMENT LIKE THIS"

Original Performer

KELLY CLARKSON

Year

2002

Billboard

1/100

"A MOMENT LIKE THIS" by KELLY CLARKSON

Kelly debuted her first single after she was announced the first-ever winner of AMERICAN IDOL®. Her tearful performance was watched by over 22 million people. The song was written for the AMERICAN IDOL® winner, and the final two both performed the song on the night of the finale.

Season 1 Finale
Performers Included

Kelly Clarkson

Justin Guarini

Featured finale performers
"I LOVE THE WAY I CAME INTO THE BUSINESS."

Kelly Clarkson

× Song

"A MOMENT LIKE THIS"

Original Performer

KELLY CLARKSON

Year

2002

Billboard

1/100

"A MOMENT LIKE THIS" by KELLY CLARKSON

Kelly debuted her first single after she was announced the first-ever winner of AMERICAN IDOL®. Her tearful performance was watched by over 22 million people. The song was written for the AMERICAN IDOL® winner, and the final two both performed the song on the night of the finale.

Season 1 Finale
Guests Included

Kelly Clarkson

Justin Guarini

Featured finale performers
"I LOVE THE WAY I CAME INTO THE BUSINESS."

Music iSIDOL

Season 2

Getting into stride, AMERICAN IDOL® Season 2 saw more auditions, more episodes, and more viewers than ever before. The top two leading men, Clay Aiken and Ruben Studdard, brought personality and soul to the stage.

Premiere Date: January 21, 2003

Kimberley Locke

× Song

"OVER THE RAINBOW"

Original Performer

JUDY GARLAND

Year

1938

Billboard

unranked

"OVER THE RAINBOW" by JUDY GARLAND

Kimberley Locke sang “Over the Rainbow” in a memorable performance in the semi-finals, but it was also her audition song. The judges praised her for her vocal control and technique, and Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul gave her a standing ovation. Kimberley moved on and finished in the top three.

Ruben Studdard

× Song

"A WHOLE NEW WORLD"

Original Performer

ALADDIN

Year

1992

Billboard

1/100

"A WHOLE NEW WORLD" from ALADDIN

Ruben Studdard sang this classic Disney song on Movie Soundtrack night. “A Whole New World” became one of the most popular audition songs of the following season.

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Fun Fact

Season 2 was the first season to incorporate text message voting.

Josh Gracin

× Song

"GOD BLESS THE U.S.A."

Original Performer

LEE GREENWOOD

Year

1992

Billboard

16/100

"GOD BLESS THE U.S.A." by LEE GREENWOOD

IDOL® finalists performed “God Bless the U.S.A.” as a group, featuring a solo by contestant and marine Josh Gracin. Gracin was recalled to active duty before the finale.

Clay Aiken

× Song

"BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATER"

Original Performer

SIMON AND GARFUNKEL

Year

1970

Billboard

1/100

"BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATER" by SIMON AND GARFUNKEL

Clay Aiken sang this song as his final IDOL® performance. His loss to Ruben Studdard was by one of the closest margins of votes in the show’s history. Despite his loss, Aiken became the fourth highest selling Idol® of all time.

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Fun Fact

Clay Aiken became the first non-winner to have a Billboard Top 100 number one. His single “This is the Night” sold over 1 million copies.

Winner

Ruben Studdard

× Song

"FLYING WITHOUT WINGS"

Original Performer

RUBEN STUDDARD

Year

2003

Billboard

2/100

"FLYING WITHOUT WINGS" by RUBEN STUDDARD

Crowned AMERICAN IDOL® Season 2 winner, the Birmingham, Alabama native sang this song with fanfare and fireworks.

Season 2 Finale
Performers Included

Kelly Clarkson

Featured finale performers
"I’VE BEEN ABLE TO DO SO MANY THINGS I NEVER EXPECTED TO DO."

Ruben Studdard

× Song

"FLYING WITHOUT WINGS"

Original Performer

RUBEN STUDDARD

Year

2003

Billboard

2/100

"FLYING WITHOUT WINGS" by RUBEN STUDDARD

Crowned AMERICAN IDOL® Season 2 winner, the Birmingham, Alabama native sang this song with fanfare and fireworks.

Season 2 Finale
Guests Included

Kelly Clarkson

Featured finale performers
"I’VE BEEN ABLE TO DO SO MANY THINGS I NEVER EXPECTED TO DO."

Music iSIDOL

Season 3

AMERICAN IDOL® Season 3 was all about girl power! The top three women brought powerful voices and winning personalities to the IDOL® stage. There was only a 2 percent margin between the winner and the runner-up.

Premiere Date: January 19, 2004

Jennifer Hudson

× Song

"CIRCLE OF LIFE"

Original Performer

THE LION KING

Year

1994

Billboard

18/100

"CIRCLE OF LIFE" from THE LION KING

Jennifer performed this Disney favorite on Elton John night. The song’s creator said Jennifer’s rendition gave him chills and was his favorite of all the performances.

LaToya London

× Song

"SOMEWHERE"

Original Performer

WEST SIDE STORY

Year

1957

Billboard

70/100

"SOMEWHERE" from WEST SIDE STORY

LaToya belted out this West Side Story ballad on the night contestants sang selections from movie soundtracks.

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Fun Fact

IDOL® added additional phone lines and two extra hours to the voting window to minimize busy signals and allow more viewers to vote.

Jennifer Hudson

× Song

"I HAVE NOTHING"

Original Performer

WHITNEY HOUSTON

Year

1993

Billboard

4/100

"I HAVE NOTHING" by WHITNEY HOUSTON

Jennifer wanted to take on Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing” because she connected with her strength and powerful voice. Guest judge Quentin Tarantino declared, “Hudson takes on Houston and wins.”

Diana DeGarmo

× Song

"DON’T CRY OUT LOUD"

Original Performer

MELISSA MANCHESTER

Year

1976

Billboard

10/100

"DON’T CRY OUT LOUD" by MELISSA MANCHESTER

Diana sang record producer Clive Davis’s choice during the final three competition, and wowed the judges with an AMERICAN IDOL®-worthy performance.

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Fun Fact

Although just missing the AMERICAN IDOL® Top 5, Jennifer Hudson went on to become a Grammy-winning artist and an Academy Award-winning actress.

Winner

Fantasia Barrino

× Song

"SUMMERTIME"

Original Performer

PORGY AND BESS

Year

1935

Billboard

unranked

"SUMMERTIME" from PORGY AND BESS

Fantasia’s rendition of “Summertime” proved she didn’t need to be standing to fill the room with her magical voice. Randy said it was the single best IDOL® performance he’d ever heard. She revisited this song in the season finale, and became the American Idol®.

Season 3 Finale
Performers Included

Tamyra Gray

Kelly Clarkson

Ruben Studdard

Featured finale performers
"I’M GONNA GO ON AMERICAN IDOL® AND SEE HOW FAR IT TAKES ME."

Fantasia Barrino

× Song

"SUMMERTIME"

Original Performer

PORGY AND BESS

Year

1935

Billboard

unranked

"SUMMERTIME" from PORGY AND BESS

Fantasia’s rendition of “Summertime” proved she didn’t need to be standing to fill the room with her magical voice. Randy said it was the single best IDOL® performance he’d ever heard. She revisited this song in the season finale, and became the American Idol®.

Season 3 Finale
Guests Included

Tamyra Gray

Kelly Clarkson

Ruben Studdard

Featured finale performers
"I’M GONNA GO ON AMERICAN IDOL® AND SEE HOW FAR IT TAKES ME."

Music iSIDOL

Season 4

She’s a little bit Country, and he’s a little bit Rock & Roll! The two music genres faced off in Season 4 with Carrie Underwood and Bo Bice. This evolution broadened the musical influence of IDOL® and further expanded its audience. This season also produced arguably the most influential female vocalist of this generation.

Premiere Date: January 18, 2005

Bo Bice

× Song

"Whipping Post"

Original Performer

THE ALLMAN BROTHERS BAND

Year

1969

Billboard

unranked

"Whipping Post" by THE ALLMAN BROTHERS BAND

This performance in the top 20 epitomized who Bo Bice was: a rocker. Although veering away from the traditional pop music of past Idols®, Bo quickly became a fan favorite.

Carrie Underwood

× Song

"INDEPENDENCE DAY"

Original Performer

MARTINA MCBRIDE

Year

1993

Billboard

unranked

"INDEPENDENCE DAY" by MARTINA MCBRIDE

Staying true to her country roots, Carrie Underwood sang "Independence Day" from her idol, Martina McBride during the top 10 performances. Simon Cowell said there was something different about Carrie. She had the "it" factor.

×

Fun Fact

The age limit of IDOL® contestants was raised to 28 years, which allowed runner-up Bo Bice to enter the competition.

Bo Bice

× Song

"IN A DREAM"

Original Performer

BADLANDS

Year

1991

Billboard

unranked

"IN A DREAM" by BADLANDS

Bo chose to sing this song without the band accompanying him - the first performer to sing acapella beyond the auditions. This beautiful performance catapulted him to the finale.

Constantine Maroulis

× Song

"BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY"

Original Performer

QUEEN

Year

1975

Billboard

2/100

"BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY" by QUEEN

Contestants had to choose a song released the year they were born, and Constantine rocked the stage with his head-banging rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

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Fun Fact

During Season 4, FOX became the most popular network for the 18-40 year-old demographic, for the first time ever.

Winner

Carrie Underwood

× Song

"ALONE"

Original Performer

HEART

Year

1987

Billboard

1/100

"ALONE" by HEART

Carrie took a risk picking this Billboard Top 100 rock song from the 80s, but it paid off. Simon Cowell made an eerie prediction that not only would she win this competition (which she did), but she would sell more records than any Idol® (which she has).

Season 4 Finale
Performers Included

Rascall Flatts

Kenny Wayne Shepherd

Kenny G

George Benson

Billy Preston

Babyface

Lyndard Skynard

Featured finale performers
"I’M FOREVER GRATEFUL TO AMERICAN IDOL® FOR CHANGING MY LIFE."

Carrie Underwood

× Song

"ALONE"

Original Performer

HEART

Year

1987

Billboard

1/100

"ALONE" by HEART

Carrie took a risk picking this Billboard Top 100 rock song from the 80s, but it paid off. Simon Cowell made an eerie prediction that not only would she win this competition (which she did), but she would sell more records than any Idol® (which she has).

Season 4 Finale
Guests Included

Rascall Flatts

Kenny Wayne Shepherd

Kenny G

George Benson

Billy Preston

Babyface

Lyndard Skynard

Featured finale performers
"I’M FOREVER GRATEFUL TO AMERICAN IDOL® FOR CHANGING MY LIFE."

Music iSIDOL

Season 5

AMERICAN IDOL® Season 5 brought the talent. From this season sprang talented artists like Taylor Hicks, Katharine McPhee, Chris Daughtry, and Kellie Pickler. In total, 18 contestants received record contracts at the end of the season, proving the influence of IDOL® on the music industry.

Premiere Date: January 17, 2006

Katharine McPhee

× Song

"BLACK HORSE AND THE CHERRY TREE"

Original Performer

KT TUNSTALL

Year

2005

Billboard

30/100

"BLACK HORSE AND THE CHERRY TREE" by KT TUNSTALL

Barefoot and in a seated position, Katharine brought this fun and energetic Billboard Top 10 to the IDOL® stage during the final 4 competition and revisited this song in the finale.

Katharine McPhee

× Song

"OVER THE RAINBOW"

Original Performer

JUDY GARLAND

Year

1938

Billboard

unranked

"OVER THE RAINBOW" by JUDY GARLAND

Judge Simon Cowell chose “Over the Rainbow” for Katharine because he knew it would be the perfect song for her IDOL® moment. She sang this song again at the finale, and brought the IDOL® audience to a standing ovation.

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Fun Fact

Season 5 was the most watched season to date and averaged over 31 million viewers per episode, according to Nielsen ratings.

Chris Daughtry

× Song

"HEMORRHAGE"

Original Performer

FUEL

Year

2001

Billboard

30/100

"HEMORRHAGE" by FUEL

Chris hit his first IDOL® moment early on, singing “Hemorrhage” for his top 20 performance. Judge Randy Jackson said it was the perfect song for him, and he could see that performance at the top of the charts.

Elliott Yamin

× Song

"MOODY’S MOOD FOR LOVE"

Original Performer

JAMES MOODY

Year

1949

Billboard

unranked

"MOODY’S MOOD FOR LOVE" by JAMES MOODY

Contestants had to choose love songs during the final six performances. Elliott’s choice brought Paula Abdul to tears, and Simon said it was a masterclass performance.

×

Fun Fact

This was the first season broadcasted in high definition.

Winner

Taylor Hicks

× Song

"TROUBLE"

Original Performer

RAY LAMONTAGNE

Year

2004

Billboard

unranked

"TROUBLE" by RAY LAMONTAGNE

Season winner Taylor Hicks sang “Trouble” back in the final 10 performances. The song had never been sung on IDOL® before and is one of his personal favorites. Taylor won the season and became the oldest contestant to ever win the IDOL® crown.

Season 5 Finale
Performers Included

Carrie Underwood

Al Jerreau

Live

Meat Loaf

Mary J. Blige

Toni Braxton

Clay Aiken

Dionne Worwick

Prince

Featured finale performers
"IDOL® CHANGED MY LIFE AND I AM THANKFUL."

Taylor Hicks

× Song

"TROUBLE"

Original Performer

RAY LAMONTAGNE

Year

2004

Billboard

unranked

"TROUBLE" by RAY LAMONTAGNE

Season winner Taylor Hicks sang “Trouble” back in the final 10 performances. The song had never been sung on IDOL® before and is one of his personal favorites. Taylor won the season and became the oldest contestant to ever win the IDOL® crown.

Season 5 Finale
Guests Included

Carrie Underwood

Al Jerreau

Live

Meat Loaf

Mary J. Blige

Toni Braxton

Clay Aiken

Dionne Worwick

Prince

Featured finale performers
"IDOL® CHANGED MY LIFE AND I AM THANKFUL."

Music iSIDOL

Season 6

Season 6 brought top talent to the IDOL® stage, with three contenders becoming standouts early on in the season: a beatboxer from Seattle, a professional backup singer from Tennessee, and a 17-year-old from Arizona.

Premiere Date: January 16-17, 2007

Blake Lewis

× Song

"YOU GIVE LOVE A BAD NAME"

Original Performer

BON JOVI

Year

1989

Billboard

1/100

"YOU GIVE LOVE A BAD NAME" by BON JOVI

Blake Lewis took a leap of faith and beatboxed this song during Bon Jovi week. Mentor Jon Bon Jovi thought it was risk - but it paid off. Randy Jackson said it was the most original version of a song ever on AMERICAN IDOL®.

Melinda Doolittle

× Song

"MY FUNNY VALENTINE"

Original Performer

ELLA FITZGERALD

Year

1937

Billboard

unranked

"MY FUNNY VALENTINE" by ELLA FITZGERALD

Melinda’s nerves didn’t get the better of her during this beautiful performance, which she dedicated to her friends. The judges praised her fantastic talent and wonderful voice.

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Fun Fact

Who could forget that hair? Although Sanjaya Malakar wasn’t the best singer, he was a fan favorite. Even Ryan Seacrest had some hair-envy and walked out on stage with a Sanjaya-style wig.

Jordin Sparks

× Song

"TO LOVE SOMEBODY"

Original Performer

THE BEE GEES

Year

1967

Billboard

17/100

"TO LOVE SOMEBODY" by THE BEE GEES

During the final four episode, writer Barry Gibb said he’d never heard a greater version of this song than Jordin’s. Meanwhile, Jordin learned she can handle a lot more pressure than she ever thought she could.

Jordin Sparks

× Song

"I WHO HAVE NOTHING"

Original Performer

TOM JONES

Year

1970

Billboard

14/100

"I WHO HAVE NOTHING" by TOM JONES

On British Invasion night on AMERICAN IDOL®, Scottish-singer Lulu coached Jordin through this heartfelt ballad. She gave an encore performance during the top three competition.

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Fun Fact

Season 6 introduced Idol Gives Back, which was a huge success, raising over $70 million in donations. In honor of the spirit of the week, no one was eliminated from the show.

Winner

Jordin Sparks

× Song

"THIS IS MY NOW"

Original Performer

JEFF PEABODY AND SCOTT KRIPPAYNE

Year

2007

Billboard

15/100

"THIS IS MY NOW" by JEFF PEABODY AND SCOTT KRIPPAYNE

At 17, Jordin became the youngest winner ever. Her winning song became her first recorded single and made it to #15 on Billboard’s Hot 100.

Season 6 Finale
Performers Included

Gwen Stefani

Kelly Clarkson

Doug E. Fresh

Gladys Knight

Tony Bennett

Carrie Underwood

Green Day

Taylor Hicks

Ruben Studdard

Bette Midler

Featured finale performers
"I AUDITIONED BECAUSE I WAS A HUGE FAN OF THE SHOW."

Jordin Sparks

× Song

"THIS IS MY NOW"

Original Performer

JEFF PEABODY AND SCOTT KRIPPAYNE

Year

2007

Billboard

15/100

"THIS IS MY NOW" by JEFF PEABODY AND SCOTT KRIPPAYNE

At 17, Jordin became the youngest winner ever. Her winning song became her first recorded single and made it to #15 on Billboard’s Hot 100.

Season 6 Finale
Guests Included

Gwen Stefani

Kelly Clarkson

Doug E. Fresh

Gladys Knight

Tony Bennett

Carrie Underwood

Green Day

Taylor Hicks

Ruben Studdard

Bette Midler

Featured finale performers
"I AUDITIONED BECAUSE I WAS A HUGE FAN OF THE SHOW."

Music iSIDOL

Season 7

It all came down to the Davids! David Cook and David Archuleta faced off in the Season 7 finale, making it the first male-dominated finale since Season 2. It also became arguably one of the biggest finale upsets in IDOL® history.

Premiere Date: January 15, 2008

Carly Smithson

× Song

"BLACKBIRD"

Original Performer

THE BEATLES

Year

1968

Billboard

unranked

"BLACKBIRD" by THE BEATLES

Carly’s brother used to sing “Blackbird” when she was growing up, and it was one of the first songs she tried to learn on the guitar. Her performance prompted Paula Abdul to say that she’s a gift, and Randy Jackson to coin a new word, “cooliosis.”

David Archuleta

× Song

"IMAGINE"

Original Performer

JOHN LENNON

Year

1971

Billboard

3/100

"IMAGINE" by JOHN LENNON

David performed “Imagine” during the semi-final’s top 20 performances. Paula said it was one of the most moving performances she’d ever heard. During his intro, David said he ran into the Season 1 finalists and performed for them when he was 11-years-old.

×

Fun Fact

This is the first season that allowed contestants to play their own instruments.

Brooke White

× Song

"LOVE IS A BATTLEFIELD"

Original Performer

PAT BENATAR

Year

1983

Billboard

14/100

"LOVE IS A BATTLEFIELD" by PAT BENATAR

Brooke sang an acoustic version of this popular hit from the 1980s during the top 16 performances. Her raw and original take on the song received positive reviews from the judges.

Jason Castro

× Song

"HALLELUJAH"

Original Performer

JEFF BUCKLEY

Year

1994

Billboard

unranked

"HALLELUJAH" by JEFF BUCKLEY

On 1980s night, Jason performed “Hallelujah,” popularized by Jeff Buckley. Simon Cowell said it was a brilliant rendition of one of his favorite songs of all time.

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Fun Fact

David Cook wore an orange wristband every show to support a fan with Leukemia from the top 12 onward.

Winner

David Cook

× Song

"BILLIE JEAN"

Original Performer

MICHAEL JACKSON

Year

1983

Billboard

14/100

"BILLIE JEAN" by MICHAEL JACKSON

David performed “Billie Jean,” which was released the year he was born. His soulful rendition pushed the boundaries and won over the judges for its risk and execution. A clear frontrunner from the beginning, David never fell into the bottom three and became the American Idol®.

Season 7 Finale
Performers Included

Seal

Donna Summer

ZZ Top

Graham Nash

Jonas Brothers

One Republic

Jordin Sparks

George Michael

Gladys Knight

Robert Downey Jr.

Featured finale performers
"I HAVE A CAREER DOING SOMETHING I LOVE."

David Cook

× Song

"BILLIE JEAN"

Original Performer

MICHAEL JACKSON

Year

1983

Billboard

14/100

"BILLIE JEAN" by MICHAEL JACKSON

David performed “Billie Jean,” which was released the year he was born. His soulful rendition pushed the boundaries and won over the judges for its risk and execution. A clear frontrunner from the beginning, David never fell into the bottom three and became the American Idol®.

Season 7 Finale
Guests Included

Seal

Donna Summer

ZZ Top

Graham Nash

Jonas Brothers

One Republic

Jordin Sparks

George Michael

Gladys Knight

Robert Downey Jr.

Featured finale performers
"I HAVE A CAREER DOING SOMETHING I LOVE."

Music iSIDOL

Season 8

A theatrical Adam Lambert faced boy-next-door Kris Allen in the battle for the AMERICAN IDOL® title. With bold performances, Adam brought style and flare to the stage and quickly won over the crowd. Although Kris was more of a slow-starter, his growth throughout the competition came to a crescendo during the final performances.

Premiere Date: January 13, 2009

Norman Gentle

× Song

"AND I AM TELLING YOU"

Original Performer

JENNIFER HOLLIDAY

Year

1982

Billboard

22/100

"AND I AM TELLING YOU" by JENNIFER HOLLIDAY

Norman, aka Nick Mitchell, was the only comedic singer to ever make it to the voting rounds of AMERICAN IDOL®. Complete with sweatbands, shorts, and coattails, he strutted the stage and belted out “And I Am Telling You.”

Adam Lambert

× Song

"RING OF FIRE"

Original Performer

JOHNNY CASH

Year

1963

Billboard

17/100

"RING OF FIRE" by JOHNNY CASH

Not one to perform a traditional country tune, Adam stayed true to himself and brought drama to this Johnny Cash classic. Adam’s unique take made him an early stand-out that propelled him through the competition to the final two.

×

Fun Fact

Singer/songwriter Kara DioGuardi joined the judging panel with Randy, Paula, and Simon.

Allison Iraheta

× Song

"CRY BABY"

Original Performer

JANIS JOPLIN

Year

1971

Billboard

41/100

"CRY BABY" by JANIS JOPLIN

Although she only turned 17 the week of the final five performances, Allison sang with a lifetime of emotions behind her voice. Her “Cry Baby” elimination performance brought the house to its feet.

Adam Lambert

× Song

"MAD WORLD"

Original Performer

TEARS FOR FEARS

Year

1982

Billboard

unranked

"MAD WORLD" by TEARS FOR FEARS

Adam sang this 1982 song on “Year They Were Born” night, and received a standing ovation from Simon Cowell and the rest of the IDOL® judges. The single reached the #19 on the Billboard Hot 100 list.

×

Fun Fact

Season 8 gave veto power to the judges. This gave them the ability to save any contestant the audience voted off, but only once per season. The judges saved Matt Giraud during the final seven performances.

Winner

Kris Allen

× Song

"HEARTLESS"

Original Performer

KANYE WEST

Year

2008

Billboard

2/100

"HEARTLESS" by KANYE WEST

During the final three performances, Kris sang “Heartless” and accompanied himself on the acoustic guitar. Randy Jackson said it was better than the original, and Kara DioGuardi said it was fearless. With votes cast just shy of 100 million, the “dark horse” Kris Allen became the American Idol®.

Season 8 Finale
Performers Included

Queen Latifah

Jason Mraz

Keith Urban

Black Eyed Peas

Cyndi Lauper

Carlos Santana

Steve Martin

Rod Stewart

Queen

KISS

Featured finale performers
"ALL I WANTED WAS AN OPPORTUNITY TO MAKE THIS MY CAREER."

Kris Allen

× Song

"HEARTLESS"

Original Performer

KANYE WEST

Year

2008

Billboard

2/100

"HEARTLESS" by KANYE WEST

During the final three performances, Kris sang “Heartless” and accompanied himself on the acoustic guitar. Randy Jackson said it was better than the original, and Kara DioGuardi said it was fearless. With votes cast just shy of 100 million, the “dark horse” Kris Allen became the American Idol®.

Season 8 Finale
Guests Included

Queen Latifah

Jason Mraz

Keith Urban

Black Eyed Peas

Cyndi Lauper

Carlos Santana

Steve Martin

Rod Stewart

Queen

KISS

Featured finale performers
"ALL I WANTED WAS AN OPPORTUNITY TO MAKE THIS MY CAREER."

Music iSIDOL

Season 9

Season 9 brought with it new judges, new mentors, and unique musical styles. The folk-rock inspired Lee DeWyze and soulful Crystal Bowersox went head-to-head in the season finale.

Premiere Date: January 12, 2010

Crystal Bowersox

× Song

"ME AND BOBBY MCGEE"

Original Performer

JANIS JOPLIN

Year

1971

Billboard

1/100

"ME AND BOBBY MCGEE" by JANIS JOPLIN

Crystal drew everyone in as she played the guitar and sang this impassioned version of “Me and Bobby McGee.” She revisited this song during the finale against contestant Lee DeWyze.

Lilly Scott

× Song

"FIXING A HOLE"

Original Performer

PAUL MCCARTNEY

Year

1967

Billboard

unranked

"FIXING A HOLE" by PAUL MCCARTNEY

Lilly brought an Indie-artist flare to the stage during the semi-finals. Although she didn’t make it to the finals, this performance remains a fan-favorite years later.

×

Fun Fact

Many contestants from this season have gone on to huge post idol success including Grammy Nominee Tori Kelly, and MTV stars Katie Stevens and Todrick Hall.

Siobhan Magnus

× Song

"PAINT IT, BLACK"

Original Performer

THE ROLLING STONES

Year

1966

Billboard

1/100

"PAINT IT, BLACK" by THE ROLLING STONES

During the final 12 performances, contestants had to sing a Rolling Stones song. Siobhan’s dramatic rendition of “Paint It, Black” wowed the judges with its originality and flare.

Casey James

× Song

"JEALOUS GUY"

Original Performer

JOHN LENNON

Year

1971

Billboard

80/100

"JEALOUS GUY" by JOHN LENNON

Casey connected with Lennon’s lyrics in “Jealous Guy” and performed it during the final nine performances. The judges said it was sensitive and soulful, and Ellen DeGeneres said it was his best performance to date.

×

Fun Fact

Victoria Beckham, Mary J. Blige, Shania Twain, Kristin Chenoweth, Avril Lavigne, Katy Perry, Neil Patrick Harris, and Joe Jonas were guest judges during the auditions.

Winner

Lee DeWyze

× Song

"HALLELUJAH"

Original Performer

JEFF BUCKLEY

Year

1994

Billboard

unranked

"HALLELUJAH" by JEFF BUCKLEY

Simon Cowell chose this song for Lee during the final three performances. Randy Jackson said Lee threw down the gauntlet with this performance and became a clear frontrunner.

Season 9 Finale
Performers Included

Alice Cooper

Michael McDonald

Christina Aguilera

Daryl Hall and John Oates

Alanis Morisette

Bret Michaels

Chicago

Janet Jackson

Barry Gibb and Robin Gibb

Joe Cocker

Featured finale performers
"I WILL ALWAYS APPRECIATE AMERICAN IDOL®."

Lee DeWyze

× Song

"HALLELUJAH"

Original Performer

JEFF BUCKLEY

Year

1994

Billboard

unranked

"HALLELUJAH" by JEFF BUCKLEY

Simon Cowell chose this song for Lee during the final three performances. Randy Jackson said Lee threw down the gauntlet with this performance and became a clear frontrunner.

Season 9 Finale
Guests Included

Alice Cooper

Michael McDonald

Christina Aguilera

Daryl Hall and John Oates

Alanis Morisette

Bret Michaels

Chicago

Janet Jackson

Barry Gibb and Robin Gibb

Joe Cocker

Featured finale performers
"I WILL ALWAYS APPRECIATE AMERICAN IDOL®."

Music iSIDOL

Season 10

Country music rose to the stage with the competition coming down to two young contestants: Scotty McCreery with his deep twang, and Lauren Alaina with her sweet southern charm. New judges Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler joined veteran Randy Jackson on the judging panel in Season 10 of AMERICAN IDOL®.

Premiere Date: January 19, 2011

Pia Toscano

× Song

"I’LL STAND BY YOU"

Original Performer

THE PRETENDERS

Year

1994

Billboard

16/100

"I’LL STAND BY YOU" by THE PRETENDERS

Pia’s semi-final’s performance received a standing ovation from judges, crowd, and fellow contestants. It was the first standing ovation of AMERICAN IDOL® Season 10.

Haley Reinhart

× Song

"BENNIE AND THE JETS"

Original Performer

ELTON JOHN

Year

1974

Billboard

1/100

"BENNIE AND THE JETS" by ELTON JOHN

Everything came together for Haley with “Bennie and the Jets.” She brought her voice, style, and confidence to the stage and wowed the judges. She revisited this song for her elimination performance.

×

Fun Fact

This was the first season contestants could audition for the show via MySpace. To audition, they were required to upload a 40-second audition clip of them singing a pre-approved song.

Casey Abrams

× Song

"NATURE BOY"

Original Performer

NAT KING COLE

Year

1948

Billboard

unranked

"NATURE BOY" by NAT KING COLE

Casey went against the advice of mentors will.i.am & Rob Reiner by deciding to sing “Nature Boy” during “Music of the Movies” week. The song highlighted his jazz background, and he was lauded for playing what was in his heart.

Lauren Alaina

× Song

"ANYWAY"

Original Performer

MARTINA MCBRIDE

Year

2007

Billboard

32/100

"ANYWAY" by MARTINA MCBRIDE

Lauren Alaina sang this inspirational song the week after a series of tornados devastated a number of towns in her home state of Georgia. She dedicated the song to all the victims of the tornados.

×

Fun Fact

Online voting was launched in Season 10, allowing fans with Facebook accounts to cast their vote.

Winner

Scotty McCreery

× Song

"AMAZED"

Original Performer

LONESTAR

Year

2000

Billboard

1/100

"AMAZED" by LONESTAR

Scotty showed his growth with his rendition of “Amazed.” His debut album Clear as Day sold over one million copies. The album made history as the first country act to debut at #1 on Billboard 200.

Season 10 Finale
Performers Included

Judas Priest

Beyonce

Tony Bennett

Lil Jon

TLC

Tom Jones

Tim McGraw

Lady Gaga

Beyonce

Marc Anthony

Featured finale performers
"AMERICAN IDOL® CHANGED MY LIFE."

Scotty McCreery

× Song

"AMAZED"

Original Performer

LONESTAR

Year

2000

Billboard

1/100

"AMAZED" by LONESTAR

Scotty showed his growth with his rendition of “Amazed.” His debut album Clear as Day sold over one million copies. The album made history as the first country act to debut at #1 on Billboard 200.

Season 10 Finale
Guests Included

Judas Priest

Beyonce

Tony Bennett

Lil Jon

TLC

Tom Jones

Tim McGraw

Lady Gaga

Beyonce

Marc Anthony

Featured finale performers
"AMERICAN IDOL® CHANGED MY LIFE."

Music iSIDOL

Season 11

Although there was a clear frontrunner from the beginning, Season 11 brought awe-inspiring performances from all of the top contestants. A record-breaking 132 million votes were cast in the finale to pick the American Idol®.

Premiere Date: January 18, 2012

Jessica Sanchez

× Song

"I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU"

Original Performer

WHITNEY HOUSTON

Year

1994

Billboard

1/100

"I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU" by WHITNEY HOUSTON

Fog gathered on the stage, and a single spotlight fell on Jessica as she beautifully sang the quintessential Whitney Houston song. Randy said her performance was the best of the competition.

Elise Testone

× Song

"WHOLE LOTTA LOVE"

Original Performer

LED ZEPPELIN

Year

1970

Billboard

4/100

"WHOLE LOTTA LOVE" by LED ZEPPELIN

Elise performed this song from her personal idols, Led Zeppelin. Rocking out on stage with the band during this performance was her moment of the season.

×

Fun Fact

Phillips Phillips’ “Home” is the highest-ranked coronation song to date, according to Billboard.

Phillip Phillips

× Song

"VOLCANO"

Original Performer

DAMIEN RICE

Year

2002

Billboard

unranked

"VOLCANO" by DAMIEN RICE

Phillip wished he had written this Damien Rice song and performed it during the final four performances. Jennifer Lopez said it was one of the most poignant moments in AMERICAN IDOL® so far.

Joshua Ledet

× Song

"IT’S A MAN’S, MAN’S, MAN’S, MAN’S WORLD"

Original Performer

JAMES BROWN

Year

1966

Billboard

8/100

"IT’S A MAN’S, MAN’S, MAN’S, MAN’S WORLD" by JAMES BROWN

When Joshua Ledet sang the James Brown hit, it made the judges “catch a feeling.” Jennifer Lopez said it took her to church.

×

Fun Fact

Jessica Sanchez was the first and only female to receive the judges' save. It paid off and took her all the way to the finale.

Winner

Phillip Phillips

× Song

"HOME"

Original Performer

PHILLIP PHILLIPS

Year

2013

Billboard

8/100

"HOME" by PHILLIP PHILLIPS

Phillip performed this folksy song at the finale, and it became his first single. When it was released it was the top-selling song of any past IDOL® contestant ever.

Season 11 Finale
Performers Included

Chaka Khan

Rihanna

Reba McIntire

Neil Diamond

Flo Rida

Jordin Sparks

Jennifer Holliday

Aerosmith

John Fogerty

Jennifer Lopez

Featured finale performers
"I’M JUST LUCKY."

Phillip Phillips

× Song

"HOME"

Original Performer

PHILLIP PHILLIPS

Year

2013

Billboard

8/100

"HOME" by PHILLIP PHILLIPS

Phillip performed this folksy song at the finale, and it became his first single. When it was released it was the top-selling song of any past IDOL® contestant ever.

Season 11 Finale
Guests Included

Chaka Khan

Rihanna

Reba McIntire

Neil Diamond

Flo Rida

Jordin Sparks

Jennifer Holliday

Aerosmith

John Fogerty

Jennifer Lopez

Featured finale performers
"I’M JUST LUCKY."

Music iSIDOL

Season 12

After five seasons of male Idols®, the ladies finally made a comeback! Season 12 was the first season to feature an all-female Top 5. Kree Harrison, a country-music lover from Texas, and Candice Glover, an R&B singer from South Carolina, battled it out for the IDOL® crown during the final 2 performances. Nicki Minaj, Keith Urban, and Mariah Carey joined veteran judge Randy Jackson on the panel.

Premiere Date: January 16, 2013

Angie Miller

× Song

"YOU SET ME FREE"

Original Performer

ANGIE MILLER

Year

2013

Billboard

unranked

"YOU SET ME FREE" by ANGIE MILLER

Angie took a risk and sang an original song during Hollywood Week, and advanced to the top 40. The judges said it was beautiful and ready to be recorded.

Amber Holcomb

× Song

"LATELY"

Original Performer

STEVIE WONDER

Year

1981

Billboard

64/100

"LATELY" by STEVIE WONDER

Amber sang her favorite Stevie Wonder song, and received a standing ovation from the judges. Mariah Carey said her performance was a tour de force.

×

Fun Fact

Season 11 winner Phillip Phillips wrote this season’s elimination song, “Gone Gone Gone.”

Angie Miller

× Song

"HALO"

Original Performer

BEYONCE

Year

2009

Billboard

12/100

"HALO" by BEYONCE

During the final five performances, Angie chose to sing Beyoncé’s “Halo” for the “Divas” song selection. Nicki Minaj said that Beyoncé would definitely watch that amazing performance. In her audition, Angie revealed that she is partially deaf, with 20 percent hearing loss in her right ear and 40 percent in her left.

Kree Harrison

× Song

"HERE COMES GOODBYE"

Original Performer

RASCAL FLATTS

Year

2009

Billboard

11/100

"HERE COMES GOODBYE" by RASCAL FLATTS

During the final three performances, the judges picked the Rascall Flatts song “Here Comes Goodbye” for the country singer from Texas. Her emotional performance received effusive praise from the judges.

×

Fun Fact

The SuperVote was launched this season, where viewers were able to cast multiple votes at once online or through the new AMERICAN IDOL® App, in addition to all the existing voting methods.

Winner

Candice Glover

× Song

"I (WHO HAVE NOTHING)"

Original Performer

TOM JONES

Year

1970

Billboard

14/100

"I (WHO HAVE NOTHING)" by TOM JONES

This powerhouse didn’t just show off her legs for the first time during her performance of “I (Who Have Nothing).” Her vocal chords surpassed the competition, leaving the judges with nothing but their utmost approval of her performance.

Season 12 Finale
Performers Included

The Band Perry

Frankie Valli

Emelie Sande

Psy

Jessie J

Aretha Franklin

Adam Lambert

Jennifer Hudson

Mariah Carey

Pitbull

Featured finale performers
"AMERICAN IDOL® CHANGED ME INTO A MORE CONFIDENT PERSON."

Candice Glover

× Song

"I (WHO HAVE NOTHING)"

Original Performer

TOM JONES

Year

1970

Billboard

14/100

"I (WHO HAVE NOTHING)" by TOM JONES

This powerhouse didn’t just show off her legs for the first time during her performance of “I (Who Have Nothing).” Her vocal chords surpassed the competition, leaving the judges with nothing but their utmost approval of her performance.

Season 12 Finale
Guests Included

The Band Perry

Frankie Valli

Emelie Sande

Psy

Jessie J

Aretha Franklin

Adam Lambert

Jennifer Hudson

Mariah Carey

Pitbull

Featured finale performers
"AMERICAN IDOL® CHANGED ME INTO A MORE CONFIDENT PERSON."

Music iSIDOL

Season 13

Big-voiced rocker Caleb Johnson faced off against the teenage pop singer Jena Irene in Season 13 of AMERICAN IDOL®. The judging panel was freshened up when Jennifer Lopez returned, and newcomers Harry Connick Jr. and Keith Urban joined her.

Premiere Date: January 15, 2014

Jena Irene

× Song

"CAN’T HELP FALLING IN LOVE"

Original Performer

ELVIS PRESLEY

Year

1961

Billboard

unranked

"CAN’T HELP FALLING IN LOVE" by ELVIS PRESLEY

After Jena’s performance of this song, Jennifer Lopez was so moved she went up to hug Jena for her outstanding performance. She has gone where no performer has gone before - reinventing the King himself.

Caleb Johnson

× Song

"DAZED AND CONFUSED"

Original Performer

LED ZEPPELIN

Year

1969

Billboard

unranked

"DAZED AND CONFUSED" by LED ZEPPELIN

Arguably the moment of the night, Caleb pushed through a vocal injury and rocked the crowd, even throwing his mic and stand on the ground in a show of epic singing glory.

×

Fun Fact

Previously cut before the top 24, this was Caleb Johnson’s third attempt at the IDOL® crown.

Jena Irene

× Song

"CREEP"

Original Performer

RADIOHEAD

Year

1993

Billboard

34/100

"CREEP" by RADIOHEAD

Even though the song was picked by her competition, she couldn’t help but nail it! She left all her viewers filled with emotion; you couldn’t help but feel it in her voice.

Caleb Johnson

× Song

"DREAM ON"

Original Performer

AEROSMITH

Year

1976

Billboard

6/100

"DREAM ON" by AEROSMITH

Challenge or request, Simon Cowell came back hoping to challenge him with this performance, but Caleb proved he could sing his way through just about anything.

×

Fun Fact

While taking a break, Harry Connick Jr. stammered his way through a fake audition and got Keith Urban to sign his ankle.

Winner

Caleb Johnson

× Song

"MAYBE I’M AMAZED"

Original Performer

PAUL MCCARTNEY

Year

1970

Billboard

unranked

"MAYBE I’M AMAZED" by PAUL MCCARTNEY

Caleb’s robust rendition of this ballad during the finale excited both the crowd and the judges. Jennifer said Caleb’s voice was like holding back a Ferrari.

Season 13 Finale
Performers Included

Phillip Phillips

Jennifer Nettles

KISS

Aloe Blacc

Demi Lovato

Paramore

Richard Marx

Darius Rucker

Lady Antebellum

John Legend

Featured finale performers
"ALL I EVER WANTED TO DO WAS MAKE MUSIC."

Caleb Johnson

× Song

"MAYBE I’M AMAZED"

Original Performer

PAUL MCCARTNEY

Year

1970

Billboard

unranked

"MAYBE I’M AMAZED" by PAUL MCCARTNEY

Caleb’s robust rendition of this ballad during the finale excited both the crowd and the judges. Jennifer said Caleb’s voice was like holding back a Ferrari.

Season 13 Finale
Guests Included

Phillip Phillips

Jennifer Nettles

KISS

Aloe Blacc

Demi Lovato

Paramore

Richard Marx

Darius Rucker

Lady Antebellum

John Legend

Featured finale performers
"ALL I EVER WANTED TO DO WAS MAKE MUSIC."

Music iSIDOL

Season 14

Season 14 of AMERICAN IDOL® did not disappoint. Fans got even more involved in the contestants’ fates with the Twitter-powered IDOL® Fan Save, which brought instantaneous results to the competition.

Premiere Date: January 7, 2015

Quentin Alexander

× Song

"I PUT A SPELL ON YOU"

Original Performer

SCREAMIN’ JAY HAWKINS

Year

1956

Billboard

unranked

"I PUT A SPELL ON YOU" by SCREAMIN’ JAY HAWKINS

Showcasing his New Orleans style, Quentin Alexander poured his heart into this soulful version of the song. It left the judges, and audience, with “all the feels.”

Joey Cook

× Song

"MAD WORLD"

Original Performer

TEARS FOR FEARS

Year

1982

Billboard

unranked

"MAD WORLD" by TEARS FOR FEARS

Joey Cook dazzled the audience with her hauntingly beautiful “Mad World” performance, even getting Keith Urban to sing the words under his breath at the judging table.

×

Fun Fact

In a full IDOL® circle, former contestant and runner up Adam Lambert was a guest judge during auditions.

Jax

× Song

"MY IMMORTAL"

Original Performer

EVANESCENCE

Year

2004

Billboard

7/100

"MY IMMORTAL" by EVANESCENCE

Jax gave one of her final performances with “My Immortal” before being eliminated. Prior to her elimination, Jax had never been in the bottom two.

Clark Beckham

× Song

"IT’S A MAN’S, MAN’S, MAN’S, MAN’S WORLD"

Original Performer

JAMES BROWN

Year

1966

Billboard

8/100

"IT’S A MAN’S, MAN’S, MAN’S, MAN’S WORLD" by JAMES BROWN

After not having enough “grit” during his audition, Clark Beckham came back with a vengeance singing his James Brown rendition of “It’s a Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World” with the Top 12. This blowout performance left fans stunned.

×

Fun Fact

This season’s AMERICAN IDOL® winner would now get a contract deal with Big Machine Records.

Winner

Nick Fradiani

× Song

"MAN IN THE MIRROR"

Original Performer

MICHAEL JACKSON

Year

1988

Billboard

2/100

"MAN IN THE MIRROR" by MICHAEL JACKSON

The eventual Season 14 winner got the crowd moving when he performed Michael Jackson’s “Man in the Mirror” for the “Songs from the 1980s” theme night.

Season 14 Finale
Performers Included

Fall Out Boy

Chic and Nile Rodgers

Ricky Martin

Janelle Monae

New Kids on the Block

Vance Joy

Andy Grammer

Prince Royce

Echosmith

Jamie Foxx

Featured finale performers
"IT’S GOING TO BE A WILD RIDE."

Nick Fradiani

× Song

"MAN IN THE MIRROR"

Original Performer

MICHAEL JACKSON

Year

1988

Billboard

2/100

"MAN IN THE MIRROR" by MICHAEL JACKSON

The eventual Season 14 winner got the crowd moving when he performed Michael Jackson’s “Man in the Mirror” for the “Songs from the 1980s” theme night.

Season 14 Finale
Guests Included

Fall Out Boy

Chic and Nile Rodgers

Ricky Martin

Janelle Monae

New Kids on the Block

Vance Joy

Andy Grammer

Prince Royce

Echosmith

Jamie Foxx

Featured finale performers
"IT’S GOING TO BE A WILD RIDE."

Music iSIDOL

Season 15

Looking back at the humble beginnings of many of the world's top music artists, it's easy to be overwhelmed with nostalgia. So many moments, so many talented men and women, so many IDOLS®. With one crown left to bestow, who will be chosen as the monumental bookend to Kelly Clarkson's groundbreaking win?

Premiere Date: January 6, 2016

La'Porsha Renae

× Song

"No More Drama"

Original Performer

Mary J. Blige

Year

2001

Billboard

15/100

"No More Drama" by Mary J. Blige

A single mother from McComb, Mississippi, La'Porsha was a fan favorite from the beginning. Jennifer Lopez commented on this vulnerable performance through tears - "It takes a lot of strength to overcome these things in your life, baby. It's an inspiration."

Avalon Young

× Song

"Earned It"

Original Performer

The Weeknd

Year

2015

Billboard

3/100

"Earned It" by The Weeknd

Avalon's impressive cover of this Oscar-nominated song earned her a spot in the Top 8. Until this recital, she took the stage without any makeup. Harry Connick Jr. said she looked "so beautiful" either way, and commended her on staying true despite the cameras.

×

Fun Fact

Immediately following her live performance of the song, Kelly Clarkson's "Piece by Piece" shot to #1 on iTunes and became the most shared social post in AMERICAN IDOL® and Fox history.

La'Porsha Renae

× Song

"Diamonds"

Original Performer

Rihanna

Year

2012

Billboard

1/100

"Diamonds" by Rihanna

She brought the house down and judges to their feet. Guest judge Kelly Clarkson said La'Porsha "dropped that mic" and would go on to win the competition. Keith Urban thanked her for bringing "pure humanity" to the performance.

Dalton Rapattoni

× Song

"Bird Set Free"

Original Performer

Sia

Year

2016

Billboard

unranked

"Bird Set Free" by Sia

Finishing in the final four, 20-year-old Dalton belted out a brave tribute to being himself. Harry Connick Jr. said, "This song was probably the best matchup with a singer. I think it was just something that you needed to do."

×

Fun Fact

For the first time in Idol® history, both Trent Harmon and La'Porsha Renae were awarded label deals, an honor that was traditionally offered only to the winner.

Winner

Trent Harmon

× Song

"Chandelier"

Original Performer

Sia

Year

2014

Billboard

8/100

"Chandelier" by Sia

Trent proved his vocal talent extended beyond country music when he delivered an "exquisite" cover that Harry Connick Jr. gave "100/100." A waiter at his family's restaurant, Trent became the final AMERICAN IDOL®, and the third consecutive winner to never be in the bottom two.

Season 15 Finale
Performers Included

Carrie Underwood

Kelly Clarkson

Fantasia Barrino

Jennifer Hudson

Ruben Studdard

Katharine McPhee

Bo Bice

Chris Daughtry

William Hung

Constantine Maroulis

Featured finale performers
"I want to work hard and do something that’ll be worthwhile."

Trent Harmon

× Song

"Chandelier"

Original Performer

Sia

Year

2014

Billboard

8/100

"Chandelier" by Sia

Trent proved his vocal talent extended beyond country music when he delivered an "exquisite" cover that Harry Connick Jr. gave "100/100." A waiter at his family's restaurant, Trent became the final AMERICAN IDOL®, and the third consecutive winner to never be in the bottom two.

Season 15 Finale
Guests Included

Carrie Underwood

Kelly Clarkson

Fantasia Barrino

Jennifer Hudson

Ruben Studdard

Katharine McPhee

Bo Bice

Chris Daughtry

William Hung

Constantine Maroulis

Featured finale performers
"I want to work hard and do something that’ll be worthwhile."