Luke Bryan Surprised By Alanis Sophia’s Brandi Carlile Cover on ‘American Idol’

Luke Bryan, Alanis Sophia; Photo by ABC, American Idol

American Idol returned to ABC on Sunday evening (April 11) with the exciting unveiling of the Top 16.

After learning she would be advancing to the next round of the competition, standout contestant Alanis Sophia once again wowed the judges with a powerful performance that showcased her undeniable vocal prowess.

Taking the stage with a cover of Brandi Carlile’s “The Story,” the 19-year-old proved she’s a force to be reckoned with as she delivered a flawless rendition of the song, which serves as the title track to Carlile’s second studio album. 

Sophia’s performance earned a standing ovation and praise from Idol judges Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie.

“Wow, I thought it was a great song choice for your voice! You’re showing off a little bit more of your serious singer/songwriter choice,” Perry told her. “And it’s so scary to get your name called and then be thrown on stage. It’s like getting a wildcard text right before you’re supposed to perform and you’re like ‘woah keep it together.’ So, you’re so young and you’re keeping it together, good for you.”

Bryan admitted that he’s taken back by each and every one of Sophia’s performances. 

“That was a rangy song… Just make sure on your lower end stuff to get your breath. Your high end is so amazing and it surprises us every time you’re in front of us,” Bryan said. “Even like when I was home watching your live performance, everything about you on my tv said ‘star.’”

Richie, too, was blown away. 

“Did we just witness an explosion? I don’t know, something happened…You were down in the valley in the mud and all of a sudden you exploded,” Richie gushed. ”What I want you to understand is there’s a huge stage here, play the stage, play the audience, work it because other than that, star power is all over your my dear.”

The 19-year-old singer previously impressed the Idol judges with performances of Demi Lovato’s “Anyone,” Alanis Morissette’s 1998 hit “Uninvited” and more. She also recently performed a duet with Jimmie Allen during the celebrity duets round.

Fans can vote for Alanis Sophia by using the official American Idol app, visiting or by texting 1 to 21523. Please note, fans can vote 10 times, per contestant, per voting method.

American Idol airs on Sundays and Mondays at 8 p.m. EST on ABC.

Click above to watch Alanis Sophia’s performance of “The Story.”