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Kris Allen won American Idol in part because of his clever reinterpretations of hit songs. Today, the 27-year-old Arkansas native is keeping the tradition alive on his “Out Alive” tour by including several fun covers on his set list.
The season-eight champ, who injured his wrist in a head-on collision on New Year’s Day, was unable to play guitar for the first part of the tour, but being the consummate trouper, continued with the trek as scheduled and has been busting out his six-string despite the injury.
As an added bonus, Allen is asking fans to tweet requests for each city the tour has visited, and the selections have varied from current pop hits to alternative and classic-rock favorites as well as standards.
The only exception: Valentine’s Day, when he got romantic with Elvis Presley‘s “I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You” — a song he selected as a dedication to his wife, Katy, who is pregnant with the couple’s first child.
Ever the musical chameleon, videos of his requested songs have popped up all over YouTube and the web. Here are six performances that stand out:
A request like this is a no-brainer for Allen’s supple vocals, and he did not disappoint with this haunting and sexy cover of Chris Isaak’s “Wicked Game.”
While in Sacramento, Allen had a little fun with Justin Bieber’s “As Long As You Love Me” by giving the ballad a reggae twist.
When in California, it’s always a good idea to cover The Eagles, so Allen obliged with this fun take on “Take It Easy.” Even without the guitar, he captured the spirit of the song, incorporating his bandmates on harmonies.
For this Ryan Adams track, “Oh My Sweet Carolina,” Allen chose to bring out opening act Jillette Johnson for an alt-rock duet.
Allen had a blast with this version of “Ho, Hey” by The Lumineers, which he performed in Decatur, Ga.
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