When Kelly Clarkson got on stage to audition for American Idol in 2002 she probably had no idea that she would return to that stage to sing an original song. But in 2016 she returned to the very same stage that launched her into superstardom as the first winner ever of American Idol to give an emotional performance of her song “Piece by Piece.”
“You have us all in tears,” host Ryan Seacrest told her. “The emotion that you exude always, but especially in that important song, it’s just incredible.”
Basically, she made herself, the audience and the judges cry, especially country music singer Keith Urban. Tears streamed down his face as he applauded her performance.
Clarkson joined American Idol as a guest judge while she was pregnant, which she explained may have contributed to why she got so choked up during her song.
“Super pregnant and hormonal,” Clarkson explained. “I’m pregnant, and it’s nostalgic, and I can’t believe it’s the last season. I’m really sorry I just bawled.”
But many people had such a tearful reaction to the song because of its content.
“I’m so embarrassed,” Clarkson told Billboard. “It’s so funny to me that everybody was like, ‘It was remarkable!’ … Well, crying on national television isn’t really my idea of a good time.”
The song was written while she was pregnant with her first child and is about her absent father.
Apparently, it’s a subject many people can relate to because the whole place was in tears.
“It’s kind of incredibly sad how many people relate to the message. I think that’s what’s kind of awesome but disturbing because it’s been a really remarkable thing after singing it — the response from it,” she said. “I’m excited to be a vessel for a message that touches people, but at the same time I’m like, God, I wish it didn’t touch that many people.”
The lyrics to the song are stinging, such as, “I begged you to want me but you didn’t want to,” and, “And all of your words, they fall flat. I made something of myself and now you wanna come back. But your love, it isn’t free. It has to be earned. ”
That’s some serious therapy couch talk right there.
“It’s like that 50/50 song where you’re like, ‘Oh, that’s incredibly sad but then incredibly hopeful,'” Clarkson told Billboard. “It’s totally hopeful and it’s kind of good. I have that reminder in life to keep my priorities in order, so it’s cool!”
Watch her powerful performance below.
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