AMERICAN IDOL hopeful Leads Judges in Prayer After Audition
By Allyson Vannatta, Staff Writer
On Sunday’s season premiere of AMERICAN IDOL a hopeful rising star led the judges in prayer after her audition.
Samantha Diaz, who goes by the stage name Just Sam, is a subway singer in New York City. The money she makes in the subway helps her provide the basic needs for her family. Diaz grew up in Harlem and was adopted by her grandmother after her parents abandoned her.
In her audition package, her grandmother, Elizabeth, says, “God is good. But, at times it’s really hard.” She continued, “Just believe in yourself and believe in God.
Having the chance to audition for the show was a dream come true that could, “change her life,” Diaz said before the audience sees her enter the audition room to face judges Katy Perry, Lionel Ritchie and Luke Bryan.
She began singing ‘You Say’ by popular Christian recording artist Lauren Daigle. However, overcome by emotion, Diaz had to stop her audition. The judges quickly got up to hug and console her.
To help give herself confidence, she started the audition again by doing what she does when she gets on the subway before she sings. The next song she sang was ‘Rise Up’ by Andra Day.
“This is really, really important, what you have, in my opinion,” Bryan said. “A lot of people come in here and they haven’t lived the struggles you have.”
Perry jumped in and said, “I love your sweet personality. You do have a really good voice. Remember where you came from and sing to where you want to go.”
Finally, Ritchie asked her the question, “In your whole life, have you ever felt safe?”
Diaz’s response was, “I feel safe when my grandmother hugs me.”
Ritchie said, “I’m so grateful that God put you in front of us.”
This is when Diaz asked, “Can I pray with you guys? Is that OK? I have a prayer I want to do with you guys.” They joined hands.
She continued, “So repeat after me. Heavenly Father, Lord make my life brand new right here, right now, with my new friends and my new fam.”
Perry said, “We’ve been saved again!”
Diaz said, “Thank you, Jesus!”
Perry was raised in a Christian household, and even began her singing career making Christian music. Sadly, she no longer considers herself a Christian, however has talked about faith before on the show.
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