American Idol judge Katy Perry was blown away by one hopeful's powerful rendition of one of her own tracks, "Wide Awake." The contestant in question was Lady K, and her take on the song had the judges (and likely many viewers) emotional. Perry even said that Lady K "reinvented" the song in a way that showcased the singer's "beauty" and "grace."
American Idol's segment on Lady K began with her giving some background on her life story. She explained to both the viewers that she and her family had to live in a shelter at one point. Lady K recalled, "My mom, myself and my four brothers and sisters were bound to a dorm and we had to make that work." The 25-year-old said that since she's the oldest, she took action in order to help her family. However, she said that the stress became "all too much" for her brother. Lady K said that he later died by suicide.
"There were times that I didn't think that the rest of the family would pull through," she said. "We're still here and that's why this is so important to me. I don't want that to happen again because it gets so hard that they feel like there is no hope. Papi's death started a fire in me. It gave me more purpose. I'm here to honor him and make my family proud."
Lady K surely made her family proud with one of the most powerful auditions American Idol has ever seen. The emotional punch that she brought to "Wide Awake" had all of the judges — Perry, Lionel Richie, and Luke Bryan — emotional. After she performed, Lady K told the judges how grateful she was for the moment. She also called out Perry specifically and said that her music has had a major effect on her life, explaining that the singer's tracks are for the "underdogs" like her.
The judges couldn't help but shower Lady K with praise. Perry said, "You sang with such elegance, beauty, grace and filigree. It's like you reinvented the song. It's like your heart is singing through your vocal cords." Bryan said that her performance was "magic" while Richie added that he's "so proud" of her. He continued, "Tuskegee will never be the same. I know you landed there for a purpose. You sang a Katy Perry song and turned it into you. Then you made Katy Perry cry." Of course, they capped off the special moment by giving Lady K a golden ticket to the Hollywood portion of the competition.