American Idol Season 22 Premiere Recap: Night One Auditions


American Idol is back for the 22nd season. It seems like just yesterday we were all watching Iam Tongi win the 21st season. It was an emotional journey as the Hawaii native stole our hearts. When he sang the first note of “Monsters,” we knew we were witnessing a star in the making. I am excited to see who will give me chills with their American Idol auditions. Now another set of Idol hopefuls want to capture our hearts and votes.

Tonight starts their and our American Idol 22 journeys as we strap in for a few months of Idol mayhem. We can expect a lot of amazing covers and star-making moments. It’s also a season with some sadness because of an unexpected departure. This is Katy Perry’s final Idol season. It’s the end of one chapter and the start of a new one next season.

Visiting the hometowns of judges Perry, Lionel Richie, and Luke Bryan is another exciting thing about American Idol 2024. We will learn a little more about them during the auditions. Perry even teased being buried in Bryan’s peanut farm. There is plenty of fun ahead, so let’s get into the recap.


The Auditions 

The Santa Barbara auditions kick off with Mackenzie Sol. He is a content creator from Las Vegas who tries to audition without his mother. He’s afraid to disappoint her. He sings a version of “Bring it On Home To Me” by Sam Cooke. The judges love her. He also gets a surprise visit from his mom. He’s going to Hollywood.

Then we go to Tuskegee University for Triston Harper.  The 15-year-old shares his difficult story of his mother leaving an abusive relationship. He sings “Cover Me Up” by Jason Isbell. Richie mentions how Triston can capture people with his voice. He moves on to Hollywood.

Only been two performances so far and they really are bringing the emotions and good performances tonight.

Kennedy Reid sings “River Deep-Mountain High” by Tina Turner. Perry screams things at her, to make her performance more dynamic, such as “wake us up.” It works because Kennedy pushes herself more during it.  It turns into Bryan dueting “Rose Colored Glasses” by John Conlee with Kennedy. They agree she has a great voice but picked the wrong song and that she may not be exactly ready. However, they want to give her a chance. Richie and Perry vote yes, but Bryan votes no. She’s going to Hollywood.

Meggie Iyer sings ‘I Can’t Make You Love Me” by Bonnie Raitt. The judges say that she has it. Perry thinks she will make the top ten. They send her to Hollywood. Ajii sings “Lose Control” by Teddy Swims. His first note stunts the judges. Richie thanks God for him. Bryan says he sings like it’s all on the line. He thinks Ajii will go far in this competition. They all give him yeses to Hollywood.

Former NFL player Blake Proehl talks about his journey which includes a life-changing injury and his grandmother. He sings “In Case You Didn’t Know” by Brett Young. This audition brings Perry to tears. Richie says he’s natural and just has it.  Perry thinks he will be in the Top Ten. He will perform in Hollywood.

Micaela McCall sings “Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours” by Stevie Wonder. She wows the judges and gains her spot in Hollywood.  Odell Bunton Jr. sings “Bring It On Home to Me” by Sam Cooke.  They all agree he’s the best soul singer from this season. He gets a hallelujah yes from Richie and the rest of the judges. Later, he finds out he got a platinum ticket.  

Jack Blocker sings his original song “I Was Wrong.” Perry says he has a good voice but some bad vocal habits. Richie and Perry vote no for him but Bryan really thinks he has something. He wants him to come back. The judges then let the crew vote and they vote for him to come back. They bring Jack back. Richie changes his vote. He’s going to Hollywood.

The last audition of the night: Mckenna Breinholt. 

She talks about her adoption journey. Her birth mother passed away before she got to meet her.  She only recently came in contact with her birth family. She hasn’t met them in person. She sings “There Was Jesus” by Dolly Parton and Zach Williams. Her birth family surprises her at her audition. Obviously, she’s going to Hollywood.


We have a montage of auditions with Alto Moon singing “Lemonz.” There is a segment about the winds. Perry brings her sister Angela and she discusses her journey performing in Santa Barbara.

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