Gabby Barrett Reflects on the ‘Insane Journey’ of ‘American Idol’
As a Top 7 finalist on this season of American Idol, Gabby Barrett’s confidence has continued to soar from the moment she started on what she terms her ‘insane journey’ on the legendary singing competition show.
However, there is a moment during every episode of American Idol where even Barrett admits to crumbling inside just a little bit. And that moment occurs every time she looks at Judge Luke Bryan.
“Oh my God, Luke Bryan is so handsome in person,” shrieks Barrett during a recent interview with Taste of Country. “He’s just a very big country artist, and it’s just an honor to even have the chance to have him and people like [fellow judges] Katy Perry and Lionel Richie critique me.”
Indeed, it’s been quite the surreal experience for the Pittsburgh native, who started performing her own shows when she was just 11 years old. Now 18 years old, Barrett says she can’t get over the fact that she just might come home with the American Idol title.
“I remember being in a room during the very first week during Hollywood Week,” recalled Barrett. “We were in a room with like 200 people in it, and they came in and said that the next American Idol was in that room and I thought that was crazy, and now we are here. It’s insane to me. I’m so grateful to the Lord.”
Grabbing many a country fan’s attention with her fiery rendition of Miranda Lambert’s “Little Red Wagon” during the April 29 episode, Barrett says that she is ready to show fans every side of her during what remains of the competition.
"I’ve always loved R&B,” says Barrett, who says she has bonded especially with fellow contestants Caleb Lee Hutchinson and Cade Foehner. “That love seemed to start in church. But then I saw Carrie Underwood on American Idol, and I fell in love with country. Heck, I loved the hair bands of the '80s too, so I have always loved country and rock 'n' roll.”
And yes, she promises she has more, musically, in her back pocket.
“I absolutely haven’t shown my full range,” she says. “I can sing as low as Toni Braxton and as high as Mariah Carey. I think it’s a very wise move to not show all your abilities. I’m really excited for Sunday’s [May 6] show. I think it will really show what I can do vocally.”
No matter what happens on the show, Barrett is determined to carve a place for herself within the music industry. “I love to perform and entertain and that’s truly what I believe the Lord created me to do,” she explains.
“No matter what, I just look forward to creating a lot of music that I can get on the radio and have the chance to perform at bigger venues," she notes. "My goal is to play Madison Square Garden in five years. That’s my ultimate goal."
“You just have to dream big,” she concludes. “You have to envision what you want and then go for it.”
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