Watch Steve Perry Surprise ‘American Idol’ Contestant Who Sang ‘Don’t Stop Believin”
Gaby Barrett performed the Journey classic “Don’t Stop Believin’” on this season’s American Idol finale last night, never knowing that former singer Steve Perry was hidden in the audience. You can watch her performance, along with the pair’s meeting, below.
Barrett sang for a judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie, plus a studio audience, in the first part of a two-part special which aired last night (May 20). "Don't Stop Believin'" was one of three tracks she sang, along with Miranda Lambert's “Little Red Wagon” and an original song titled “Rivers Deep.”
“It was the most amazing version I’ve ever heard,” Perry told Barrett. “Swear it. Beautiful, just beautiful. Thank you so much. And I got to meet your parents too – they love you. They love you!” Pointing to the judges he added: “And they love you. And I love you!”
Journey’s Jonathan Cain told Songfacts that this stand-out track from 1981's Escape “was the first attempt to bring an audience into the band's world.” He added: “We're singing for you. We're singing about your world now. So, it was a departure from what they had been doing before. What I wanted to do was get a little Bruce Springsteen going on. Bruce was the master of that, bringing his audience into his songs. I was a huge fan of Bruce's."
It was actually a busy weekend for "Don't Stop Believin'": The song also turned up in the cold opening of the season finale of Saturday Night Live as Alec Baldwin portrayed President Donald Trump in a parody of the famous series-ending scene from The Sopranos.
The second half of the American Idol finale is broadcast tonight on ABC, when the winner will be revealed. Barrett is set against two other finalists, Caleb Lee Hutchinson and Maddie Poppe – who performed a cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide,” which you can watch below.
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