Triston Harper Lands In ‘Idol’ Top 7 Following “Sand In My Boots” Cover

American Idol/Facebook

All eyes are on 15-year-old Triston Harper who is quickly emerging as a frontrunner on American Idol‘s 22nd season. 

Triston Harper won the hearts of America with his soulful American Idol audition performance of Jason Isbell’s “Cover Me Up” earlier this year. In the weeks that followed, Harper grew in confidence as he continued to deliver solid performances that included covers of country songs from artists like Cody Johnson, Blake Shelton, Luke Combs, and more.

During Sunday night’s episode (April 29), the field of 10 was narrowed to 8, and it was clear that Triston was worried that he would be sent home. But any uneasiness he felt was for nothing as he was the first name called as a member of the Top 8. His advancement in the competition came after he was tasked with singing a song from the year he was born. He delivered an energy-filled performance of Jason Aldean’s “She’s Country.”

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Before taking the stage, Triston spent some time with country star Shania Twain who coached him on song delivery. The two also bonded over the fact that both had challenging childhoods.

Harper told the “Any Man Of Mine” singer that he got serious about singing when he and his mom were homeless and he had to sing to put food on the table.

“At the time, my momma was working at a Dollar Store and I would go inside of her job and just sing as hard as I could to make people put money down,” Harper said. “I just know I couldn’t let momma down.”

“I understand growing up with hardships. Starting as a young, young kid singing for a few bucks, and not just for fun,” Shania told Triston. “It shouldn’t be that way when you’re a kid. It should just be fun and doing it for the love of it. And now he’s obviously doing it for the love of it which is so beautiful to see.”

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On Monday, the remaining contestants were given songs hand-picked by judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry, and Lionel Richie. Behind-the-scenes footage showed Harper struggling with his song choice. He initially chose “Sand In My Boots” by Morgan Wallen. While rehearsing Tim McGraw’s “Humble & Kind,” Harper broke down in tears, saying that he felt like he was singing to himself.  Ultimately, Triston chose to sing Morgan Wallen’s “Sand In My Boots.”

Was it enough to secure the talented teen a spot in the Top 7? Live voting is open until the last commercial break of the two-hour episode.

Results will be revealed at the end of the show when the Top 6 are named and one is saved by the judges, leaving 7 contestants moving on to next week. During the episode airing Sunday, May 5, the Top 7 will perform songs by superstar artist Adele.

Watch Triston Harper sing “Sand In My Boots” below.

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