By Gina Carbone
I am not crushing on Matthew Lawrence, 25, of Starke, Fla., because he robbed a bank with a BB gun at age 15 and spent four years behind bars.
That was stupid.
I’m crushing because he knows that; he’s trying to make amends for hurting his family; he can sing; he looks like a real man’s man on a show that often celebrates boys; and did I mention he can sing? There’s a lotta soul there.
Matt’s performance of “Trouble” by Ray LaMontagne (an “Idol” favorite) was the last Orlando audition of “American Idol” season nine.
I wish the song were on iTunes because I’d buy it. I’d be listening to it right now.
Simon Cowell felt the same way.
Simon: “Brilliant. Brilliant. You can really, really sing. It almost feels like you could’ve written that song. That’s how believable it was.”
Matt started to laugh at the double meaning of that.
Simon: “I don’t mean that in a bad way.”
Simon: “Well, maybe I did. No, it felt authentic. I was very impressed. Very, very impressed.”
Kara DioGuardi complimented Matt’s vocal control. “He’s the real deal.”
Randy Jackson said he was so genuine. “That’s what it’s about.”
Simon said Matt was the “easiest yes I’ve said today.”
Kara said he was one of the best and would make top 12.
Randy said he was definitely one of the best that day.
Matt said getting the golden ticket to Hollywood represented an opportunity to maybe get back some of the things he lost.
I love this guy. He and Maddy Curtis of the Boston auditions are my two favorites so far. Soulful, genuine people I believe.
So stay out of trouble, Matt. At least long enough for me to vote you into the top 10.
Watch Matt’s audition video here … until Fox pulls it.