Philip Murphy has a voice unlike any other, and he might just be here to stay.
When the street busker, who simply goes by Murphy, performed “Just the Two Of Us” on American Idol, the judges were undecided and asked to see another performance.
In the words of Katy Perry, “I think you’re on the precipice of something cool but it’s not quite there. I mean, you got a storyteller’s voice, but it needs a little bit more inflection when you’re singing, a little bit more dynamics, I think?”
Lionel Richie added, “I wanna take the novelty part out of this. Which means you’re gonna have to shed back a couple of those layers of mystique, to see more of you. So just for texture, I wanna hear one more from you, just give me a taste of something else.”
For his second song, Murphy sang an original called “Painted Man”.
As seen in the sneak peek, Bryan was a yes, while Perry was a no. That means it’s all up to Richie– and we won’t find out until tonight how it pans out.
Murphy Is a Huge Fan of Richie’s
During an interview with Seattle Refined, Murphy said of his journey to American Idol, “There were a lot of folks that told me from a younger age that I should try for competitions. I used to sing as a little kid, but at that stage I figured I wasn’t good enough. Then my voice changed and I really thought I wasn’t good enough. And now here I am! People are still telling me a decade later, and so I’m excited to give it a shot, you know.”
Asked to shed some light on his life, he added, “I’m a musician who has traveled the country for quite a while now in hope of finding something a little more than myself, you know. Whenever I think of music I think of the good I can bring with it. Why music is here, it makes people happy. I learned I could be a positive influence wherever I went. I want people to look at me as an example of you don’t need a lot to give something substantial. Particularly, I want to help people that have had a hard life. Like, by the end of it I want to have a homeless shelter. I don’t care that I don’t have a ton of money. I want to have something to show for my hard work.”
Talking specifically about Idol, Murphy shared that he is a big fan of Lionel Richie’s music. “… And for me to be able to sing in the same room as him, I’ve got to be honest, you don’t think about it, but it’s a dream come true in a way, you know?”
He says he couldn’t have asked for more from the experience.
He Was Born Half Blind
According to Seattle Refined, Murphy was born half-blind. He was born in Baltimore but now calls Seattle his home.
Asked to discuss how the audition came about, Murphy shared that he got a message and then a phone call. “They reached out to me and they said, ‘Hey, we found you and we like your music.'”
Murphy isn’t the only Washington singer in the competition this season– Benson Boone hails from Monroe and is also one to keep an eye out for. The 18-year-old advanced to the next round with three “yes’s” from the judges– what’s more is that singing is a ‘new thing’ for him.
When Perry asked if he’d ever sung happy birthday, he said he had but did it “badly”. Asked if he’s ever used a mic, Boone said, “Not really.”
Bryan’s response? “Well, hey, the best way to test the volcano is to jump in it.”