‘American Idol’ Favorite Jack Blocker Says the “Stars Aligned” for His Willie Nelson Tribute

It wasn’t too long ago that Jack Blocker thought his American Idol dream was over before it began. Now, only seven season 22 hopefuls remain, and Blocker is one of them. The 25-year-old graphic artist has cemented his place as a fan favorite and a very real frontrunner for the crown. Blocker’s most recent performance, a cover of Willie Nelson’s “Always On My Mind” had online viewers declaring him “a star on the rise.” Making it even more special, the performance took place Monday (April 29) — coinciding with the Red-Headed Stranger’s 91st birthday.

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Blocker acknowledged the serendipitous timing of his performance with a social media post Tuesday (April 30.) “Stars aligned enough for me to sing some Willie tonight on his 91st!” the singer-songwriter wrote in his Instagram caption. “Super grateful to y’all and @americanidol for the chance.”

As he has become known for doing, Blocker managed to stay true to both himself and the original spirit of the performance. The opening lines saw him closely sticking to Nelson’s cadence. However, Blocker came into his own more and more as the performance progressed — an apt metaphor for his Idol journey so far.

Viewers expressed their delight on social media. “And it was Willie Nelson’s 91st birthday!” one viewer wrote on X/Twitter. “Such a beautiful version of his song.”

Katy Perry Says Jack Blocker Has ‘Been Fully Realized’ With Willie Nelson Performance

Monday’s (April 29) episode saw the return of the Judges’ Song Contest on American Idol. The contestants chose one of three songs hand-picked for them by each Idol judge. After the performance, they had to guess which judge selected their winning song.

Blocker guessed Lionel Richie had chosen Nelson’s 1983 GRAMMY-winning hit for him. However, in reality, it was an emotional Katy Perry who had selected the tune. “I’m crying because I’m winning,” the “Teenage Dream” singer joked.

[RELATED: American Idol’s Jack Blocker Smashes Willie Nelson Cover on the Red Headed Stranger’s Birthday]

Perry later clarified the real reason behind her tears. “I feel like you’ve been fully realized,” she said.

The diamond-certified artist admitted to feeling “conflicted” about Blocker’s audition, which has already gone done in Idol lore. Luke Bryan was the only judge willing to take a chance on the native Texan. However, the show’s crew rallied around Blocker, eventually convincing Richie to change his vote.

“You keep singing like that, you’re going to surprise everyone on this contest,” Perry said. “Good for you.”

Featured photo via Instagram

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