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Singer Hunter Price of Barnesville on ‘America’s Got Talent’

Simon Cowell asked him to try a second song

Originally posted Tuesday, July 10, 2018 by RODNEY HO/rho@ajc.com on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

Barnesville singer Hunter Price managed to make it past the opening round of “America’s Got Talent” Tuesday night but had to sing a second song to impress Simon Cowell.

He first chose a song his mom loved: Bryan Adams’ super treacly 1991 No. 1 hit “Everything I Do (I Do It For You.” It has a David Cook-type feel. Within 30 seonds, Cowell stopped him, saying his version sounded too “generic,” too much like karaoke, a major insult in Cowell’s lexicon.

Cowell asked who he admired and Price surprisingly said Taylor Swift. Noting she writes her own songs, he asked if Price had an original song up his sleeve. Of course he did, a tune called “Left Behind” that sounded very country and quite pretty. 

Yep, a country singer from Georgia. There have been a few of those.

“Much better,” Mel B said.

“This is like two different auditions,” Cowell said. “Great melody. nice lyrics.”

“When I sing, that was probably 120 seconds that I made every single negative thing going on in their life,” Hunter said. 

Cowell didn’t believe that and wants to know Hunter’s “real” story. “What’s the low and high point?” he probed.

“I’ve been out on my own since I was 18 and I’ve had times over the years where I didn’t have enough money to eat. It just makes moments like this that much better,” Price said.

“You have some depth in you,” Cowell added before saying yes. 

Ultimately, three of the judges liked him enough to move him on, including Heidi Klum and Mel B. Howie Mandel didn’t think he had enough. “You need to open up,” he said. 

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Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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