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American Idol season seven winner David Cook will return to the show on Wednesday as a guest mentor, as the top 8 finalists tackle the songs of the ’80s — a perfect pick, as his championship run on the competition featured more than a few successfully-tackled ’80s anthems by the 31-year old Texas native.
To celebrate the return of Cook, THR’s Idol Worship highlights his top 5 ’80s moments on Idol:
Bon Jovi, “Livin’ on a Prayer”
Cook wasn’t working on the dock the first time he got in front of then-judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson. But it was obvious the bartender from Oklahoma had big dreams and even bigger vocals.
Lionel Ritchie, “Hello”
Cook went electric on this classic ’80s ballad, turning it into an earnest rocker track and letting the audience know that he was Idol material. Jackson loved that Cook made a “slightly emo version” out of the song, while Abdul said his version would be “a hit today.”
ZZ Top, “Sharp Dressed Man”
Cook teamed up with the band that ruled MTV in 1983 for an unforgettable finale performance. This performance was so much fun that Abdul stood and danced for the entire song — all that was missing was the Eliminator car.
U2, “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”
Cook sang the U2 hit with the Idol audience in his corner, showing off his star power by rocking out on the lip of the stage. Jackson called it “hot,” while Abdul said, “You may not have found what you are looking for, but we have found David Cook.” Cowell thought it was “phenomenal.”
Michael Jackson, “Billie Jean”
Cook was born in 1982, the same year Jackson put out his biggest album, Thriller. Instead of doing a karaoke version of the single, the singer chose Chris Cornell’s acoustic reinterpretation of the song as a ballad, showing Idol voters that he was, indeed, “the one.”
Okay, Idol Worshippers, which is your favorite ’80s cover by Cook during his Idol run? Sound off in the comments below!
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