Katy Perry praises Alejandro Aranda on ‘American Idol’ for finally deciding to ‘play in this competition’ [WATCH]

For much of this season of “American Idol,” the judges were concerned that Alejandro Aranda wasn’t necessarily “in it to win it,” as former judge Randy Jackson often said. However, following Alejandro’s Top 5 performance of Elton John‘s “Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word,” Katy Perry proudly declared, “You’ve decided to actually play in this competition, and it shows.” Fellow judge Lionel Richie echoed her sentiments by proclaiming, “It shows.” Do you think Alejandro has done enough to win Season 17 of “American Idol”? Make your predictions at Gold Derby before next Sunday’s finale.

“When I was growing up, music was the thing that spoke the language of all of my feelings,” Katy told the 25-year-old musician from Pomona, California. “It comforted me, it gave me joy. That song was so sad. I am so sad right now. But it’s okay. You were so connected.”

Luke Bryan wondered aloud, “Have you been, like, holding back? I mean, you are owning the night, my friend. You are owning the night. And listen, wrap your head around being a ginormous star please, because there is no other way around it.” Lionel added that Alejandro “killed” that version of the Elton John classic.

Also during the live Top 5 show, Alejandro took on Bob Marley‘s “No Woman No Cry” as his Bobby Bones pick and his original song “Blesser” as his hero tribute. At the end of the two hours, the Top 3 singers were revealed to be Alejandro, Laine Hardy and Madison VanDenburg. That meant both Wade Cota and Laci Kaye Booth were eliminated from the competition, as Gold Derby predicted.

Since his very first appearance, this “humble homie” has been lauded by viewers as one of the best to ever appear on the reality TV show. Alejandro’s audition of his original song “Out Loud” was watched more times than we can count, and he’s wowed fans not just with his smooth falsetto voice but also with his genius guitar-and-piano-playing. Is he about to become the 17th winner of “American Idol”?

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