Luke Bryan Reveals Why This Season of 'American Idol' Is His Favorite

With two full seasons under his belt already, Luke Bryan can already tell that this current season of American Idol is his favorite. Bryan joins Lionel Richie and Katy Perry in serving as a judge on the reality TV talent show, and claims the talent is the best, and most eclectic, it has ever been.

"The best part of the new season is we're seeing more songwriters come out with better songs," Bryan said, via ABC Audio. "Songwriters and people that think that they don't fit the American Idol criteria, they're coming out."

Bryan praised last year's finalists, including winner Laine Hardy, for being authentically themselves throughout the entire season. "Last year with our contestants, you look at our Top 10 –– it was diverse," Bryan said. "It was across the board. And kids at home can go, 'You know what? If that guy can stand up there and go this far in American Idol, [I can too]. I thought American Idol was only for pop stars and country stars.'"

Bryan previously revealed that he was especially enjoying getting to know the contestants this year, perhaps even more than in the previous two seasons.

"You're able to watch good TV that you can sit down and watch with your family," Bryan told PEOPLE. "You can cry, you can cheer these kids on. There's some kids from backgrounds where you just … pull for them. It's the microcosm of life, we get to see it walk in and you get to see what America's all about. They get to stand in front of us and sing. And year three, I'm enjoying it now more than ever. I feel like, with the show, it seems like we're catching a good stride, and I'm just excited to be a part of it."

"But American Idol's for all kind of stars," he added. "And I think this year is showing that."

In addition to being on American Idol, Bryan is getting ready to release his new album, Born Here, Live Here, Die Here. The record includes "Knockin' Boots," "What She Wants Tonight," and the song he just dropped, "One Margarita."


Bryan is scheduled to kick off his Proud to Be Right Here Tour on May 28, with Morgan Wallen, Caylee Hammack and Runaway June serving as his opening acts. Find tour dates by visiting his website.

Photo Credit: Getty / David Livingston