Harry Connick Jr. has apparently been looking for someone who can sing “Loving You” with all its high notes.
Enter Sydney Arterbridge, a 15-year-old who wowed the judges with her range at the Detroit auditions.
In an interview with Good Day Columbus, the sophomore at Fort Hayes High School in Ohio, said she didn’t realize she could hit those notes until about two years ago.
“I went to my vocal coach and she was warming me up on the piano, and she just kept going higher and higher and higher, and then I discovered I had whistle notes,” she recalls.
They served her well in Detroit. Sydney advanced to Hollywood with a unanimous yes vote from the judges.
Sydney also told Good Day Columbus that she grew up around music. Her dad is a musician and her mom “can sing as well. Ever since I was a baby, my dad would have me on stage with him and we’d always be singing around the house”
In her Road to Hollywood video, we find out “Loving You” was actually the second song she performed for the judges.
“It’s been a dream since I was a little girl,” she says of auditioning for Idol, which might have explained the high-pitched shrieks once she was handed the golden ticket. “It’s a step forward toward making my dream come true.”
Among her inspirations, she names Mariah Carey, Beyonce and Jazmine Sullivan.
“I think what makes me unique is I incorporate all genres of music in my style,” Sydney says. “I don’t say, ‘Let’s just stick to R&B. Or let’s just stick to pop.’ And growing up around a reggae band (her dad’s, I would assume), I have no choice but to incorporate that into my music. That’s what makes my style unique.”
I’ve embedded some samples of her music below. You can hear more on her YouTube channel.
“Sweet Dreams/Baby I Love/Loving You”
“At Last” (Etta James cover)
“Hero” (Mariah Carey cover)