'American Idol' hopeful wows Katy Perry with performance of 'I Kissed a Girl' -- watch!

Whenever an American Idol contestant decides to audition by singing one of the judges' hit singles, it's always a risky move. But sometimes, it pays off big.

When Caitlin Lucia stood before Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie on Sunday's American Idol, the 22-year-old aspiring singer told the Perry that she was one of her biggest musical influences, and that she had even been playing gigs at Hotel Café for three years, the same place the "Swish Swish" singer got her start.

To show just how much she had been inspired by Perry, Lucia decided to perform her 2008 track "I Kissed A Girl." Strumming away at her guitar, the young Idol hopeful delivered a beautiful, bluesy rendition of the famous single that really blew the judges away.

"Usually, I say to a contestant singing my song, 'Sing it as good as or better [than me],' and I think she might have sung it better," Perry said, jokingly feigning frustration. "You gave it a really incredible original spin."

However, Perry and her fellow judges said they wanted to see the singer deliver something even bigger.

"I think you've got a bigger motor than you're showing us, though," Perry said.

"We can hear it," Richie added. "I mean, you're just cruising along, touching the top, and there's more after that top. I know there is."

Lucia will get a chance to show just how much more she can give, since all three judges voted her through to Hollywood.

Another Idol hopeful who impressed the judges with her performance was Gabby Barrett. The singer was accompanied to the auditions by her father, who she said has been supporting her dream of being a musician since she was a little girl.

"My dad has sacrificed so much for me, and I'm gonna go in there with my head high and they gotta pick me," an emotional Barrett said in a pre-taped solo interview.

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Mikalah Gordon: THEN

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She has a standing gig every night singing at Las Vegas' Cosmopolitan Hotel. A new web series based on her life premieres this year.

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He's snagged a number of leading Broadway roles, including the title role in "Jekyll and Hyde."

Lindsey Cardinale: THEN

Lindsey Cardinale: NOW

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Anthony Fedorov: THEN

Anthony Fedorov: NOW

How's that for a makeover? He still makes music and is a proud father. 

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He's mostly kept a low profile since the show.

Nikko Smith: THEN

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Still killing the stage!

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The 17-year-old singer had a rough start, singing a cover of Carrie Underwood's "Good Girl" that the judges stopped soon after she began. Bryan and Richie explained that they wanted to hear Barrett's voice, not just her impression of Carrie Underwood. 

All the while, her excited dad stood outside the room, listening through the door to hear how the audition was going.

The young songstress then showed her true personality with a beautiful rendition of a church song that blew the judges away and earned her a golden ticket to Hollywood.

However, before the audition was over, Perry thought it would be hilarious if they pranked Barrett's dad by telling him that his little girl "didn't make it through."

Perry went out to grab the dad to break the fake bad news, while Barrett waited in the room, hiding the golden ticket, and pretended to be sad. As Perry pretended that his little girl was heartbroken, his daughter turned around beaming with the ticket and the dad burst into tears of joy.

Back in November, ET caught up with the judges before auditions kicked off, and all three agreed that one of their biggest tips to hopefuls is to not try and sing the judges' famous songs.

"Never," the judges resoundingly concurred.

"Because here is the thing -- we have heard those songs so many times, day in and day out," Perry admitted. "And God bless ... I love my songs, I am so grateful for them ... but I don't need to hear them again."

"Unless you interpret them extremely differently," Perry added, explaining that she wouldn't mind hearing her own tunes "if you sing them better than us."

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Katy Perry out and about
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Katy Perry out and about
SANTA MONICA, CA - APRIL 06: Katy Perry attends Caroline De Maigret and Pharrell Williams dinner in celebration of CHANEL's Gabrielle Bag at Giorgio Baldi on April 6, 2017 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Donato Sardella/Getty Images for CHANEL)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 25: Katy Perry celebrates Elton John's 70th Birthday and 50-Year Songwriting Partnership with Bernie Taupin benefiting the Elton John AIDS Foundation and the UCLA Hammer Museum at RED Studios Hollywood on March 25, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 18: Katy Perry attends the Human Rights Campaign's 2017 on March 18, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by JB Lacroix/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 18: Katy Perry attends the Human Rights Campaign's 2017 Los Angeles Gala Dinner at JW Marriott Los Angeles at L.A. LIVE on March 18, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Todd Williamson/Getty Images)
INGLEWOOD, CA - MARCH 05: Katy Perry attends the 2017 iHeartRadio Music Awards at The Forum on March 5, 2017 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by C Flanigan/Getty Images)
INGLEWOOD, CA - MARCH 05: Katy Perry attends the 2017 iHeartRadio Music Awards at The Forum on March 5, 2017 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by JB Lacroix/WireImage)
INGLEWOOD, CA - MARCH 05: Singer Katy Perry performs onstage at the 2017 iHeartRadio Music Awards which broadcast live on Turner's TBS, TNT, and truTV at The Forum on March 5, 2017 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
INGLEWOOD, CA - MARCH 05: Musician Katy Perry performs onstage at the 2017 iHeartRadio Music Awards which broadcast live on Turner's TBS, TNT, and truTV at The Forum on March 5, 2017 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for iHeartMedia)
BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 26: Katy Perry (R) and Derek Blasberg (L) pose as they arrive at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party in Beverly Hills, California, Los Angeles on February 26, 2017. (Photo by Philip Rock/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Singer Katy Perry arrives at the 2017 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Hosted By Graydon Carter at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on February 26, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - FEBRUARY 22: Katy Perry attends the Universal Music BRIT Awards After-Party 2017 hosted by Soho House and BACARDI Rum at 180 The Strand, on February 23, 2017 in London, England. PHOTOGRAPH BY Jules Annan / Barcroft Images London-T:+44 207 033 1031 E:hello@barcroftmedia.com - New York-T:+1 212 796 2458 E:hello@barcroftusa.com - New Delhi-T:+91 11 4053 2429 E:hello@barcroftindia.com www.barcroftimages.com (Photo credit should read Jules Annan / Barcroft Images / Barcroft Media via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 22: Ellie Goulding and Katy Perry attend (R) the Universal Music BRIT Awards After-Party 2017 hosted by Soho House and BACARD�at 180 The Strand on February 22, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/ Getty Images for Universal, Soho House & Bacardi Rum )
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 22: EDITORIAL USE ONLY. Katy Perry attends The BRIT Awards 2017 at The O2 Arena on February 22, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/Redferns)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 22: EDITORIAL USE ONLY. (L) Katy Perry and Skip Marley perform on stage at The BRIT Awards 2017 at The O2 Arena on February 22, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 21: Katy Perry seen at BBC Radio One on February 21, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Neil Mockford/GC Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 20: Katy Perry attends at the Christopher Kane show during the London Fashion Week February 2017 collections on February 20, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Antonio de Moraes Barros Filho/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 20: Katy Perry seen at Christopher Kane at Tate Britain on Day 4 of London Fashion Week February 2017 on February 20, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by SAV/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 16: Singer-songwriter Katy Perry is seen arriving at the Marc Jacobs Fall 2017 Show at Park Avenue Armory on February 16, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gilbert Carrasquillo/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 12: Singer Katy Perry arrives at the 59th GRAMMY Awards at the Staples Center on February 12, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES - FEBRUARY 12: Katy Perry performs during THE 59TH ANNUAL GRAMMY AWARDS, broadcast live from the STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, Sunday, Feb. 12 (8:00-11:30 PM, live ET/5:00-8:30 PM, live PT; 6:00-9:30 PM, live MT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Monty Brinton/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 12: Singer-songwriter Katy Perry arrives at the Universal Music Group's 2017 GRAMMY After Party at The Theatre at Ace Hotel on February 12, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 12: Singer Katy Perry attends the Universal Music Group's 2017 GRAMMY After Party at The Theatre at Ace Hotel on February 12, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Greg Doherty/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 12: Singer Katy Perry attends The 59th GRAMMY Awards at STAPLES Center on February 12, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for NARAS)
WESTWOOD, CA - DECEMBER 07: Singer Katy Perry arrives at the Los Angeles Premiere of 'Office Christmas Party' at Regency Village Theatre on December 7, 2016 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
WESTWOOD, CA - DECEMBER 07: Katy Perry and Jennifer Aniston attend the Premiere of Paramount Pictures' 'Office Christmas Party' at Regency Village Theatre on December 7, 2016 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Todd Williamson/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 30: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) Katy Perry and Tony Winner Cynthia Erivo pose backstage at the hit musical 'The Color Purple' on Broadway at The Jacobs Theatre on November 30, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Glikas/Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 29: Cindi Jaliher, Katy Perry (C), and Carol Edwards attend the 12th annual UNICEF Snowflake Ball at Cipriani Wall Street on November 29, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for UNICEF )
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 29: Singer Katy Perry attends the 12th Annual UNICEF Snowflake Ball at Cipriani Wall Street on November 29, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 29: Katy Perry attends the 12th Annual UNICEF Snowflake Ball at Cipriani Wall Street on November 29, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)
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