Remember When Laine Hardy Auditioned for ‘American Idol’ the First Time? [Watch]
American Idol contestant Laine Hardy is part of a rather small group of people who have been on American Idol for not one, but two seasons.
He auditioned for the first time in 2018, singing "Hurricane" by Band of Heathens. The Louisiana native won over judge Luke Bryan before he even opened his mouth.
His favorite hobby at the time? "Drivin' my truck around town ... burnin' gas," Hardy remarks in the above video. That caused Bryan to take notice, and he told him to "keep talkin', I'm gonna write a country song."
The panel then started talking about judge Katy Perry's alligator earrings.
"I haven't seen alligator earrings, but I've seen alligators," Hardy observed, saying he's even hunted alligators and was "a foot away" from one.
"Have you ever caught a gator on a topwater plug?" Bryan asked him, while an exasperated Perry said, "I don't even know what the hell you're talking about!"
After the judges were in stitches, Bryan jokingly said, "Please be able to sing."
Hardy was clearly able to sing and won over Bryan, Perry and Lionel Richie. After his performance, all three of the judges were impressed. "If you ain’t careful, you might win American Idol,” Bryan said in awe. "Don't let a gator tail hit you in the throat!"
Hardy only advanced a short way in 2018 before washing out of the competition, and he did not intend to audition again in 2019. He accompanied a friend on guitar during her audition, but he auditioned for American Idol a second time at the urging of the judges, and his run on the show this season has been considerably more successful. Now 18, Laine Hardy has dominated the Idol stage in 2019 with standout performances including a cover of Sam Cooke's "Bring It on Home to Me" and Elvis Presley's "That's All Right."
Hardy performed "Hurricane" once again on Monday night (April 15), bringing his American Idol experience full-circle to his first audition. He breathed new life into the song by giving it a new rhythm and a more polished vocal performance, winning his way into the Top 10 finalists.
American Idol airs on Sundays and Mondays at 8PM ET on ABC.
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