OFFSTAGE: Kree Harrison’s American Idol Performance Gets Mixed Reviews

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

Earlier this week on American Idol, contestant Kree Harrison performed Carrie Underwood ’s new single “See You Again.” And to quote the night’s mentor Harry Connick Jr., she sang the crap out of it. During Harrison’s rehearsal, Connick said, “Absolutely smokin’. I wouldn’t change a freaking note of that.” Then right after her performance, Underwood herself tweeted her praise. “As a songwriter, there is nothing better than to hear someone else’s interpretation of a song you wrote. Thank you @KreeAI12 for that!” she wrote.

But Keith Urban wasn’t quite as effusive. It seemed like he liked the song itself but just not the actual performance. “I was trying to figure out, ’Why am I not quite getting connected to this moment?’ It’s a power ballad, so if you’re gonna play with the whole band, which we can’t see, and you’re seated with a guitar player, I feel like there’s a conflict going on between what I’m feeling and what I’m seeing,” he explained. “So I keep waiting for the thing to be bigger. I found the two a little out of sync.” But even though Urban was more critical than Underwood and Connick were, one thing is undeniable. Harrison can sing. “Your voice is faultless,” Urban told her. “It always is.”