The season premiere American Idol brought something the show has never seen, courtesy of Taylor Fagins.
The UC Irvine drama graduate captivated the judges with a performance of “We Need More,” an original song and Black Lives Matter anthem.
“Ahmaud Arbery, you went for a run ‘cause you probably felt free. Ahmaud Arbery, your run had an end that nobody could see. Little black boys don’t run outside or play with water guns at night,” Fagins sang. “They run away from red and white, blue lights. Little black boys don’t go to stores or use their pockets anymore. Can someone tell them what they’re living for?
Fagins told the judges that he wrote three days after the murder of George Floyd in 2020.
“I wrote ‘We Need More’ sitting on my bed, telling myself that I have to say something,” Taylor told the judges.
“I wasn’t born into what was happening until the ‘60s, and those [political] songs were there too What I am emotional about is that we need your song in 2022. How disgusting.” Richie said. “That was very powerful and I’m very proud of you.”
Fellow judge Luke Bryan echoed Richie’s sentiment, telling Taylor “that was a really magical moment for me where I just took every ounce of it in” and that “it was special.”
“Activism comes in so many different forms and it seems that art has the most impact at the end of the day,” fellow judge and pop singer Katy Perry said. Not surprisingly, all three judges advanced Fagins to the next round.