Susan Boyle’s “Wild Horses” video is a hit! Susan Boyle made her American singing debut Wednesday night at the Season 4 finale of America’s Got Talent with a surprising song choice: the Rolling Stones’ “Wild Horses.” And just like her debut across the ocean just a few short months ago, the video of her performance on America’s Got Talent has gone viral. Bloggers, columnists, radio and television talk show hosts can’t stop writing and talking about it. The “Wild Horses” video, much like the “I Dreamed A Dream” video and the “Cry Me A River” video that succeeded it after her Britain’s Got Talent debut, is getting continuous hits on YouTube. To say that “Wild Horses” and the album it comes from, “I Dreamed A Dream,” which is due to be released in November, is going to be an unqualified success is to master the art of understatement.
Wednesday night’s America’s Got Talent winner, Kevin Skinner, probably never thought he would be part of such an excellent group of contestants when he auditioned for Season 4 on America’s Got Talent. He no doubt only hoped to get onto the show to get enough publicity to start doing larger gigs in Kentucky. And when he introduced himself as an ‘unemployed chicken catcher,’ everyone just laughed. Kevin Skinner quickly became the American counterpart of Susan Boyle. But he went a little further than just the audition and walked away with the winner’s title Wednesday night.
Sharon Osbourne, one of the three judges on America’s Got Talent, told People, “”Apparently, it was a really huge win, too. It’s just such a feel-good story that people just want him to win because he’s the everyman. He’s the underdog. All his life he’s been the underdog. … He’s so genuine, what you see is what you get. He’s not contrived, and so many people that come on this show kind of get sophisticated and they know how to play the game.”
And Kevin Skinner won America’s Got Talent in great company. International singing sensation Shakira performed “She Wolf.” Leona Lewis and Rascal Flatts were also there. But the performance that took second to none was the subtle beauty of Susan Boyle singing “Wild Horses.” And as Kevin Skinner was “everyman,” Susan Boyle was “everywoman.”
Susan Boyle burst onto the world scene via Britain’s Got Talent and an amazing performance of “I Dreamed A Dream” from Les Miserables. No one gave her a second glance, some even laughed behind their hand when she first walked onto the stage in London. But that did not last and she soon was winning hears around the world with her simple story. She went on to finish runner-up in a shocking finale to a tremendously talented dance troupe, Diversity. Unfortunately, she also had to be hospitalized for awhile, shook by the pressure of the sudden fame and the rigors of a demanding schedule preying on a middle-aged woman used to a quiet life. But wherever she performed for the Britain’s Got Talent road show, Susan Boyle packed the house.
And you could have heard a pin drop and clatter to the floor when the spotlight centered on her on the America’s Got Talent stage. The anticipation was nerve-wracking. “Wild Horses?” Was she kidding? A Rolling Stones tune, considered to be one of their best and ranked by Rolling Stone magazine at #334 in the 500 Greatest Songs in Rock History? From the Rolling Stones’ honky-tonk, country-esque rock period? Really? The anticipation was hopeful mixed with a “this I gotta hear” curiosity.
And when the first words started, you knew she was going to pull it off. It sounded nothing like the Rolling Stones, which is perhaps its strongest appeal. She downplayed the verses and let her voice soar for the choruses. It was a simple and beautiful performance.
And all anyone could say by the time the performance was over was: Susan Boyle has done it again. She shocked the world. Nick Cannon, host of America’s Got Talent, leaned into his microphone and said, “Wow! Truly amazing…”
And it was.
The America’s Got Talent finale was less American than it was international in flavor, but, when you get to the heart of it, that is what America has always been about — taking elements of the rest of the world and making the best of it. The line-up of stars that graced the stage Wednesday night was reflective not only of the diversity of tastes of the American public but of the world itself. The entire show was riveting and well worth watching.
And when Susan Boyle sang, at least for this writer, wild horses couldn’t drag me away.
For those who have not seen Susan Boyle’s performance of “Wild Horses,” it is definitely must-see.
Susan Boyle video of “Wild Horses” from America’s Got Talent finale at YouTube.com.
“America’s Got Talent,” NBC Television