If you watch one performance from American Idol‘s Hollywood Week, please let it be Willie Spence’s. After auditioning for season 19 with an awe-inspiring cover of Rihanna’s “Diamonds,” the Georgia native chose to sing John Legend’s “All of Me” for the genre challenge, and it undoubtedly solidified his status as a front runner in the singing competition.
Before Spence’s rendition kicked off, the show played footage of the 21-year-old explaining his inspiring path to budding fame. After going viral back in 2017, he moved to Hollywood to pursue his singing dreams but soon wound up moving back to his hometown of Douglas, GA, when his mother had a stroke. “You only get one mother. I would do the same thing again and again and again,” he explained of the decision.
All three judges were understandably stupefied by Spence’s “All of Me” cover — Katy Perry had puppy-dog eyes the entire time, Luke Bryan beamed like a proud dad, and Lionel Richie couldn’t help but throw his hands up in disbelief over his pure vocals. “Your career is right there for you,” Richie said before advancing him through to the next round. Judging by the chatter on social media, many American Idol fans think Spence is on his way to sweeping the entire competition and nabbing a record deal, and we absolutely agree.