Luke Bryan Deems Mike Parker a ‘Superstar’ Following Cover of Chart-Topping Country Hit

ABC’s American Idol returned on Sunday (April 17) with the exciting reveal of the Top 20 and standout contestant Mike…


Lauren Jo Black

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April 17, 2022


8:01 pm

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Mike Parker; Photo via YouTube

ABC’s American Idol returned on Sunday (April 17) with the exciting reveal of the Top 20 and standout contestant Mike Parker was thrilled to learn that he advanced to the next round. 

Prior to his performance, the Virginia native and carpenter reminisced on his musical journey, recalling the moment he attended a Luke Bryan concert at the amphitheater next to where he used to work. Parker said the moment was life-changing for him. 

“[It’s a] full-circle moment now as I get to sing in front of him,” the 27-year-old said, adding, “Getting to be validated by a country superstar like Luke Bryan I just felt this sense of this is your moment and country music is your genre.”

Parker then took the stage to perform Ryan Hurd and Maren Morris‘ “Chasing After You.” 

YouTube video

Parker’s performance earned a roaring applause and standing ovation from the entire crowd and the Idol judges.

“Did you see how the crowd reacted when you pulled the mic off of the stand?” Katy Perry asked Parker, to which he replied, “yes ma’am.”

“They lost it for a hot second,” Perry added. “Do you understand that you have the power? Do you understand that you can like make the room boom? You just did it and it’s so wonderful to see it coming out and it’s silky and it’s smooth and I believe it and you’re the next country artist!”

“I mean, Mike, the time is so right for you in the world of music and you’re checking so many amazing boxes,” Bryan gushed. “It’s so inspiring being in this room and watching… I just used the word superstar and I feel you’re a superstar too.”

“Now, more than ever is the time. The thing I love most with you is that you have a storyteller’s voice,” Lionel Richie added. “You have the ability to bring us right to the core and then explode calmly. The crowd gives you the expression. You’re on fire my friend!”

Parker and his fellow Top 20 contestants are vying for a spot in the Top 14, which will be revealed on Monday (April 18). 

To vote for Mike Parker, visit, Text 7 to 21523 or use the American Idol app.

American Idol airs Sundays and Mondays at 8/7c on ABC.

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Lauren Jo Black

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Lauren Jo Black

Lauren Jo Black, a University of Central Florida graduate, has immersed herself in the world of country music for over 15 years. In 2008, she co-founded CountryMusicIsLove, eventually selling it to a major record label in 2015. Following the rebranding of the website to Sounds Like Nashville, Black served as Editor-in-Chief for two and a half years. Currently, she assumes the role of Editor-in-Chief at Country Now and oversees Country Now’s content and digital footprint. Her extensive experience also encompasses her previous role as a Country Music Expert Writer for and her work being featured on She’s been spotlighted among Country Aircheck’s Women of Influence and received the 2012 Rising Star Award from the University of Central Florida. Black also spent time in front of the camera as host of Country Now Live, which brought live music directly to fans in 2021 when the majority of concerts were halted due to the pandemic. During this time, she hosted 24 weeks of live concerts via Country Now Live on Twitch with special guests such as Lady A, Dierks Bentley, Jordan Davis, Brett Young, and Jon Pardi. Over the course of her career, she has had the privilege of conducting interviews with some of the industry’s most prominent stars, including Reba McEntire, Blake Shelton, Luke Combs, Carrie Underwood, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Lainey Wilson, and many others. Lauren Jo Black is a longtime member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.