Did American Idol just discover the next female country superstar?
23-year-old Huntergirl (also known as Hunter Wolkonowski) left a lasting impression on the Idol judges with a cover of Rascal Flatts’ “Riot.”
The Winchester, TN native, who works with veterans as a music therapist, earned a standing ovation from Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie and they couldn’t help but gush over her vocal abilities.
“Hunter, your voice cuts through, it is like a sharp knife. It’s just so nice to listen to, you can tell the story through and through,” Perry told her. ”It’s authentic… You’re obviously a good-hearted person with what you do helping Veterans. You check so many different boxes. All you need is a shot.”
Bryan was so impressed with Huntergirl that he compared her to one of country music’s biggest stars.
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“I wrote Top 10 on my sheet… It’s like a new age Miranda Lambert deal going on,” Bryan exclaimed. “It’s my fifth year doing this and that is my favorite female country voice I’ve heard in five years.”
The reigning ACM Entertainer of the Year then presented her with the golden ticket after she earned a ‘yes’ from each of the superstar Idol judges.
“That’s real country right there,” Richie pointed out. “She will have a solid career in country.”
“That is serious right there…” Bryan added. “Straight out of the country.”
— Luke Bryan (@lukebryan) February 28, 2022
After earning her ticket to Hollywood, Hunter thanked veterans for supporting her.
American Idol airs every Sunday at 8/7c on ABC.