Noah Thompson Joins Forces With Melissa Etheridge on ‘American Idol’ Season 20 Finale [Watch]
It’s no question that Noah Thompson can successfully cover songs outside of his genre of choice. And on Sunday night (May 22), he proved that yet again with a cover of Melissa Etheridge’s “I’m the Only One” as part of the show’s nail-biting three-hour American Idol finale.
But the country singer from Louisa, Ky., and Season 20 Top 3 standout didn’t sing the tune alone — Thompson belted out the song with Etheridge herself. Together, the two artists traded vocals on the rock hit while jamming out on separate guitars from behind their microphone stands.
“But I'm the only one / Who'll walk across the fire for you / And I'm the only one / Who'll drown in my desire for you / It's only fear that makes you run / The demons that you're hiding from / When all your promises are gone / I'm the only one,” they sang, tearing through the chorus in unison before Thompson slayed the second verse of the smash hit solo.
Leading up to their once-in-a-lifetime duet, Etheridge tweeted, “That moment, when you realize the other two finalists are singing with the judges and you are singing with … what’s her name again?” She captioned, “don’t worry @noahthompsonmu1. We are gonna rock the finals.”
“I can’t wait for Melissa. I really can’t, looking forward to meeting you and cannot wait for this duet,” Thompson replied in response to Etheridge’s tweet.
Thompson and Etheridge’s take on her hit was part of the duets portion of the show, which saw each of the three finalists — HunterGirl and Leah Marlene in addition to Thompson — singing a song with a celebrity guest. HunterGirl sang Randy Travis’ "I Told You So" with Luke Bryan, while Marlene turned out “Firework” with Katy Perry. Top 10 contestant Mike Parker also returned to the show to sing “Strawberry Wine” with Deana Carter, and Emyrson Flora made an appearance singing “The Good Ones” with Gabby Barrett.
For the finale, Thompson and his fellow Top 3 finalists were challenged with singing their debut single and a tune from Bruce Springsteen’s catalog. After singing Springsteen’s “I’m on Fire,” Thompson melted hearts with his original tune, “One Day Tonight,” which earned him high praise from Perry.
“You came from working on the ark — from a place where all of your heroes are from. You are about to do something big. Do not stop dreaming. There's a plan for you in your life,” she said, beaming.
The winner of American Idol will receive $250,000 and a recording contract.