Is Odell Bunton Jr The Next American Idol? Texas Singer Steamrolls Judges With Soul-Packed Audition

Odell Bunton Jr brought his golden voice to American Idol this season, and the judges couldn’t believe their ears when he delivered a soulful version of Sam Cooke’s “Bring It on Home to Me”. Katy Perry declared that the 28-year-old singer was the “best soul singer we’ve had this season”. When you hear what Bunton can do with his voice, you might just agree.

Bunton was born and raised in Austin, Texas, but now works in Dallas as an airport security guard. He first learned to sing in church, and he brings a great deal of that Southern gospel power when he performs. As Bunton sang to a piano accompaniment, the judges looked at each other in shock, just vibing with the amazing energy he was putting out. The Texan’s audition has already reached a large audience online, gaining 1.4 million views since its upload on February 24, 2024.

This quick uptake from fans online already made Bunton’s audition one of the most popular from this season. Everything was on the line for his audition, as the singer is struggling to make ends meet while raising five young children, aged 11 to 2, with his wife Shan. He bowed his head and held his hands together in a silent prayer after the audition, and it turns out his prayers were about to be answered.

After hearing the audition, Judge Lionel Richie knew that he had a special performer in front of him and said, “You have what we call P-O-tential. Potential, son. I was not expecting all of that from the security chief, but that was a real tight old school.” Katy Perry then said Bunton was the best soul singer they’d heard this season, to which Richie and Luke Bryan heartily agreed. This past week, Bunton returned to the show to sing the Nina Simone hit “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood”.

Perry then encouraged Bryan to share his notes on the audition, to which he said, “I wrote ‘incredible’. It was like one of those things where I had a chill hitting my ribcage, and then you hit another one and my leg went numb.” Bryan then wondered why Bunton wasn’t already a huge star, given that he is 28 years old.

It looks like the talented Texan is finally going to get his shot at fame though, as shortly afterwards the judges took a vote and unanimously decided to give him a golden ticket, putting him on his way to Hollywood. This past week, Bunton made the cut for the final 24, and many fans on YouTube are citing him as a shoo-in to win the whole competition. You can follow the talented and soulful singer, Odell Bunton Jr, on Facebook or checkout his latest snapshots on his Instagram handle.

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