Lionel Richie Beams With Pride As Emmy Russell & Jack Blocker Cover “Hello”


The Monday, April 29th, episode of American Idol was filled with incredible solo performances, but it also had the remaining eight contestants team up for duets or group performances.

Triston Harper and Will Moseley took on Luke Bryan’s “What Makes You Country,” while Abi Carter, Julia Gagnon, Kaibrienne, and McKenna Faith Breinholt took Katy Perry’s “Wide Awake.” That left Emmy Russell and Jack Blocker to pay tribute to Lionel Richie with arguably his most iconic song, “Hello.”


Russell and Blocker are known for making songs their own. A perfect example of this is Russell’s cover of the rock song “All The Small Things.” Blocker started the song off solo and Russell took over partway through the chorus before they harmonized. The magic really happened when their voices were together.

Throughout the performance, Richie was visibly impressed by their choices and beaming with pride. After the final note, he ran on stage to give them both a hug.

“So, uh, I can read your body language,” Seacrest said to the judges, who were taking their seats, giving the duo a standing ovation. “That went well.”

“Normally, and I can speak for all of us, the most terrifying thing is to sing your song because what happens when they don’t do justice?” Richie said. “You all took it and made it your own, and believe it or not, ‘Miss Shy’ over here and ‘Mr. Oh My God I’m Not Sure,’ boy was I wrong! The two of you together make such a brilliant combination!”

During the performance Perry leaned over to Richie and said it was the best both singers had ever sounded, and we’d agree that this is one of their best showings!

RELATED: List: All Of Emmy Russell’s “American Idol” Performances

This incredible performance occurred just minutes before Blocker took the stage solo to perform a chilling rendition of Willie Nelson’s “Always On My Mind,” which brought Perry to tears.

RELATED: Katy Perry Weeps After ‘Idol’ Contestant’s “Emotional” Willie Nelson Cover

Russell closed out the show with a very emotional cover of her grandmother Loretta Lynn’s signature song, Coal Miner’s Daughter.” 

Both Blocker and Russell were voted through to the Top 7 by America and will be continuing on their American Idol journey! Watch their incredible cover of “Hello” below.

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