Simon Cowell Breaks Down On Live TV After Michael Ketterer’s Emotional AGT Performance

Michael Ketterer gave a touching performance of James Bay’s “Us” on America’s Got Talent, which made Simon Cowell break down on live TV. Cowell wasn’t the only one who struggled to get through his comments, as Mel B also teared up and had to take a moment after Ketterer’s show-stopping performance. The Knoxville, Tennessee singer stripped back “Us” to just a lone piano part, and it was the perfect arrangement to let his voice really soar.

Ketterer opened the song with a smoky, low-key vocal, before ratcheting up the intensity to really bring the hopeful message of the chorus home. The father of six, who was then 41 years old, gave an intense performance so you really couldn’t keep your eyes off him throughout. He finished the performance off strong with a triumphant high note in the bridge leading into the final chorus.

Host Tyra Banks asked Cowell to comment first, but the boss told her to come back to him, as he clearly hadn’t collected himself. Banks wasn’t put off so easily and pressed him to make his comments despite his emotions. Cowell then said, “Michael, look, as a dad, I can’t imagine what you’ve done and you’re on this show, and you really needed this. And you’re a really special guy, and there’s just something about you.”

Ketterer’s rendition of “Us” was a hit on YouTube, attracting eight million views on the platform. The singer initially auditioned with the Bee Gees’ “To Love Somebody”, which he also pared back to a solo piano arrangement. This was enough to win Cowell’s golden buzzer, which sent Ketterer straight to the quarterfinals, where he performed “Us”.

Fans online were wowed by Ketterer’s performance of “Us” and added comments such as “I’ve never seen Simon with a lump in his throat like that and at a loss for words. Such a beautiful performance captured right there. God bless this man” and “Simon’s words and him crying almost made me cry and I’ve never been close to crying on America’s Got Talent. He’s an honest, soft guy, and I love him for that.”
Later in season 13, Ketterer advanced to the semifinals, where he sang Miley Cyrus’s “When I Look At You”. He later progressed to the finals, where he sang Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell’s “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”. Ketterer eventually placed fifth overall in the competition.

For more of Michael Ketterer’s incredible performances, follow him on his YouTube Channel and subscribe to his Instagram page.

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