‘American Idol': Arthur Gunn Turns ‘Take Me Home, Country Roads’ Into a Reggae Jam
Arthur Gunn put a unique spin on a country classic during Sunday night's (May 3) American Idol episode. The Kathmandu, Nepal-born singer, who emigrated to Wichita, Kan., in 2014, turned John Denver's "Take Me Home, Country Roads" into a reggae jam.
A No. 2 Billboard Hot 100 hit for Denver and now an official state song of West Virginia, "Take Me Home, Country Roads" has been covered by numerous artists, including Jamaican band Toots and the Maytals and Hawaiian singer Israel Kamakawiwoʻole. It's their versions of the song that align more with Gunn's take, for which he accompanied himself on acoustic guitar.
"It's all believable ... I love what you did," Idol judge Lionel Richie told Gunn after his performance. Katy Perry, meanwhile, praised Gunn's improved eye contact and connection with the camera, his virtual audience
"What a classic song to take on, and way to put your spin [on it]," Luke Bryan told Gunn. "I think that performance really showcased you in a perfect way, bud."
In addition to Gunn, Louis Knight, Julia Gargano, Jovin Webb, Jonny West, Sofia James, Grace Leer, Just Sam, Dillon James and Francisco Martin were all voted into the American Idol Season 18 Top 10 by viewers. The three judges voted to save Makayla Phillips, creating a Top 11.
American Idol airs Sunday nights at 8PM ET. Both contestants and judges, along with host Ryan Seacrest and the rest of the show's crew, are working remotely during the pandemic.
See the Top 20 Finalists on American Idol, Season 18: