A new season begins on “American Idol” and a whole new group of singing hopefuls. Katy Perry, Luke Bryan, and Lionel Richie return as judges for this season.

Last year Laine Hardy was crowned the winner on his second attempt on the show; but Alejandro proved that a singer doesn’t have to win to make a mark on the public.

Camryn Leigh Smith gets the auditons started off. Luke said that Camryn reminded him of a young Katy. Katy and Lionel said that Camryn gave them hope for the new season. Camryn got three yeses for a ticket to Hollywood.

Douglas is a dustman from Mobile who has never performed before. Lionel sends him out to warm up. Ryan takes him out get warmed up before a group. After a bit of a warm up, Douglas Kiker returns to the audition room and gives an A Cappella audition. Katy wanted to see Douglas’ range, a real novice, Douglas didn’t know what that was. Luke sat at the piano and offered some help. For a man who does not know what his voice can do or what key he sings in, is here for one thing…to show his daughter you can do anything. Douglas got him a ticket to Hollywood…and a hug from each judge.

Francisco Martin is very nervous; so Lionel and Luke tries to help him calm down before his audition. Calmed down and ready to sing; Katy said that Francisco has an incredible voice. Katy wants to hear one of Francisco’s songs. Katy called him top 10, but Luke said top five. Francisco got his ticket to Hollywood.

Hunter Gibson – The Come Back – feels that Idol needs more rock and has Katy singing along with him. Katy liked it but isn’t sure if it’s right for “American Idol”. Luke noted that the singing and the vocals weren’t there yet. Lionel said that it wasn’t for Idol. Hunter did not get his ticket to Hollywood.

Nick Merico returned for another try. Last year he earned his ticket to Hollywood due to some personal issues never made it to Hollywood. Luke said that Nick is still dreamy and can sing. Katy said that she felt that Nick thought he was too good for them. She told Nick not to let his ego get in the way. Lionel said that he has a big problem, he doesn’t like Nick’s voice or attitude; adding that he doesn’t think Nick can make it in Hollywood. Nick got his ticket to Hollywood…and a yes from Lionel. Nick noted that Lionel scared him.

Along with the auditions, the “American Idol” bus returns to cross the country finding voices worthy of “American Idol”.

Born in Nepal, Arthur Gunn, now call America home and performed a Bob Dylan song for his audition. Lionel wanted to hear another song; Katy wanted him to open his eyes and look at them. Luke asked if Arthur wanted to open for him in a couple of weeks. Arthur came to the Idol bus in Knasas for his original audition. The judges called him something special and unique. Arthur got his ticket to Hollywood.

Now in the nation’s capital, Alisa calls New York home but was born in Russia. Alisa brought her musical partner Luige Babe for the audition. She played a stripper in the film “Hustlers”. They performed an original song for the audition. Katy wants to hear some Heart but they try to be funny instead. Luke called them loads of fun but was not blown away by the singing. The judges agreed it was fun but not for “American Idol”. Alisa did not get her ticket to Hollywood. Alisa said that the judges were out of their mind and didn’t know what unique was.

Born in London, Louis Knight now call Philadelphia home. He performed an original song about a friend who had committed suicide. He gave a heartfelt and emotional performance that had Luke calling him the biggest star they had on Idol. Lionel said that Louis was on to something big. Louis got his ticket to Hollywood.

In Milwaukee, Canadian singer Saveria was a child star in her homeland. Now she is looking for another chance to make it again. She performed an original song for her audition. Lionel said that she had some great vocal moments but didn’t feel it. Luke noted that Saveria worked her butt off but didn’t make him jump out of his seat. Katy called Saveria a great singer with so much potential. Lionel gave it a no, because he didn’t think that Idol could help her. With a yes from Katy and a no form Lionel, Luke had the final vote and agreed with Lionel. Katy said that Saveria deserved a chance to go to Hollywood, but the guys did not agree with her.

Luke and Lionel had some fun with Meghan Fitton the fitness instructor’s name and occupation; but when it came to her singing, Luke called it incredible and rock star worthy. Lionel called her voice raw and wonderful. Katy said that she had some special moments. Meghan got her ticket to Hollywood.

In the final audition of the night, subway singer Just Sam hopes to get out of the underground and get her ticket to Hollywood. She was very emotional when she began her audition and had to start over a couple times. She used her subway spiel before singing to help her get comfortable. Luke said that what she has is really important. Lionel told her to forget about winning but to rely on them to help her through it all. Before the decision, Sam led them in a prayer. She got her ticket to Hollywood.

Next week the auditions continue…