Last night (April 1st), American Idol honored their original Idol, Kelly Clarkson, by hosting an evening of performances in her honor. Clarkson was on hand for the event, acting as a mentor to the contestants, and she also hopped onstage for two performances of her own. The “Breakaway” musician treated viewers to a live rendition of her current single, “Heartbeat Song,” as well as a performance of the Etta James classic “At Last,” which Clarkson performed during her reign on the Idol stage.
The evening was filled with Clarkson classics including her first huge hit, “Miss Independent,” and other chart-toppers such as “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You).” Kelly Clarkson mentored the Top 8 in the competition through the performances of her songs. She revealed that “Miss Independent” is “my favorite song still to perform live” and was impressed by the group as a whole, though she was particularly enchanted by Quentin Alexander.
After their solo performances, the group got together for a collective performance of Clarkson’s “People Like Us.” Also in attendance in the American Idol audience last night were Kelly Clarkson’s biggest fans, her husband Brandon Blackstone and her daughter River Rose.
Kelly Clarkson wowed judges from the very beginning of her run on American Idol with her impressive rendition of Madonna’s “Express Yourself” and Etta James’ “At Last” at the Dallas auditions in 2002. The personable musician somehow found herself behind the judges’ table after trading places with Randy Jackson, and she was then given three consecutive passes on to Hollywood from the Jackson, Paula Abdul, and Simon Cowell. Since winning the title of the original American Idol, Clarkson has gone on to achieve a lengthy career filled with chart-topping success.
“Heartbeat Song” is the lead single off Kelly Clarkson’s current album, Piece By Piece. The single has peaked at number 21 on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming a moderate hit for Clarkson. She has performed it during several live performances, most recently at the iHeartRadio Music Awards. Clarkson has previously announced that the album’s second single would be the Sia co-penned power ballad, “Invincible;” however, at this time there is no news about the release schedule for the single. She will also be embarking upon a North American tour alongside Pentatonix in support of her chart-topping album.
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