Julia Gagnon Found Her Birth Mother And Sings To Make Her Proud On American Idol

Last month, Julia Gagnon had a unique story to share on American Idol, having found her birth mother and singing on the show to make her proud. The 21-year-old went big, singing Aretha Franklin’s “Ain’t No Way”, and it takes a brave woman to try and measure up to the Queen of Soul. Luckily for her, Gagnon absolutely had the goods, and blew the judges away with her soulful and expressive voice.

“Ain’t No Way” was an inspired choice, as although the lyrics are about a romantic relationship, the theme of reaching for a genuine connection tied in with Gagnon’s journey to find her birth mother. The college student sang over a solo piano arrangement which perfectly highlighted the sincerity of her performance, and the judges were giving each other knowing looks as she delved into the soul classic.

Gagnon really understood the assignment, and began the song with a raspy and low-key vocal, before building the song to a triumphant high note that had judge Lionel Richie exclaiming, “oh my God.” Luke Bryan commented on this, saying, “When you hit the amazing falsetto and then you turned the volume down to a beautiful…”

Katy Perry took to the floor at this point, saying, “I loved that. You’ve got several soul singers inside of you, and you could go really far. You could be in the top 10.” Richie then gushed over the young singer, saying he grew up with Aretha Franklin. “There are certain songs you just don’t sing because you just can’t touch the original,” he said. “And you just made it not only your song, but you did things that are just beyond.” Later in the season, she sang Fantasia’s “I Believe”.

Fans online raved about Gagnon’s audition, adding comments such as “I just threw my shoe across the room! This young lady should go all the way to the finals!” and “I am 82 and have listened to Aretha Franklin all my life and Julia blew my socks off!”

The judges were also blown away, and when it came time to vote, all three said yes to the talented young lady, sending her to Hollywood with a golden ticket. That wasn’t the end of Gagnon’s rollercoaster ride that day, however. After some further deliberation, the judges decided to upgrade Gagnon’s ticket to the last platinum ticket of the season, allowing her to skip the Idol Arena stage.

If you enjoyed Julia Gagnon’s soulful performance, stay updated by following her on her social media accounts. You can find her on Facebook and check out her musical journey and behind-the-scenes insights on Instagram.

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