+
upworthy
Pop Culture

Loretta Lynn's granddaughter wows 'American Idol' judges with raw original song

Emmy Russell's original song "Skinny," featuring lyrics about body image and eating disorders, nearly brought everyone to tears.

american idol, emmy russell, emmy russell america idol, loretta lynn granddaughter
America Idol/Youtube, Promotional image of Loretta Lynn/Wikipedia

Emmy Russell (left) and her grandmother Loretta Lynn (right)

Emmy Russell, granddaughter of country music icon Loretta Lynn, proved that she was an artist in her own right during a recent episode of “American Idol.”

The 24-year-old singer-songwriter from Nashville auditioned in front of judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan during the show's Feb. 25 episode, during which she opened up about wanting to not live in her grandmother’s shadow.

"She's one of the biggest country music singers of all time, but to me she's just Grandma," she said, adding "I think I am a little timid, and I think it is because I want to own my voice. That's why I want to challenge myself and come out here."


Russell then went to the piano and sang an origin song titled “Skinny,” featuring raw lyrics about living with an eating disorder. All three judges were floored by her storytelling and soft, but powerful voice.

"You're an A+ songwriter. So was your grandma. You got the gift. I don't think you need to compare yourself to what Grandma was. You're totally different. You shouldn't give yourself all that pressure,” Perry said just before Russell was given the unanimous approval to go through to the show's next round.

Viewers online seconded the sentiment. One person wrote, “apples don't fall far from the tree. Her Grandma passed on the gift of songwriting, and now Emmy needs to take that gift and add her own special gifts to it. It's your time to shine - enjoy the ride.”

Another added, “She definitely has a talent, and can tell a story in a song. With the right mentoring, and encouragement from people outside the family, she should fulfill the promise she shows, and step out of the Lynn shadow.”

Watch the full performance below:

Besides being a captivating performer, Loretta Lynn was known for writing deeply personal and honest lyrics. Russell does well by her role model, in a way that’s uniquely her own.

Family

Woman goes to huge lengths to adopt husband's ex-wife's baby to save him from foster care

She had lived in foster care and didn't want it for the newborn with no name.

Christie Werts and her son, Levi


Christie and Wesley Werts have taken the idea of a blended family to the next level. When the couple fell in love five years ago and married, they brought together her children, Megan and Vance, and his children, Austin and Dakota.

As of January, the Ohio family has five children after adopting young Levi, 2. Levi is the son of Wesley’s ex-wife, who passed away four days after the child was born. The ex-wife had the boy prematurely, at 33 weeks, and died soon after from drug addiction and complications of COVID-19.

When Levi was born, he was a ward of the state with no first name or birth certificate.

Keep ReadingShow less
@rexartistry/TikTok

One generation is way better about taking up space.

While millennials and Gen Zer’s often get lumped together as the “young group,” they are certainly not the same. (Although, it is kind of hard to tell with all the Y2K fashion floating around.)

But speaking as a millennial, we definitely have different approaches to life, a lot of which seems to come down to a sense of self-assuredness. That goes for shopping, socializing, self expression…and even going to the hair salon, apparently.

Alexis Rex (@rex.artistry), hairstylist and owner of Rex Artistry Salon in Maryland, gave a brilliant (and hilarious) demonstration of some key personality differences between her millennial clients and her Gen Z clients in a now viral TikTok video.

Keep ReadingShow less

How often should you wash your jeans?

Social media has become a fertile breeding ground for conversations about hygiene. Whether it’s celebrities bragging about how little their family bathes or battles over how often people should wash their sheets or bras.

One of the debates that gets the most diverse responses is how often people wash their denim jeans.

Denim atelier Benjamin Talley Smith tells Today that jeans should be washed "as little as possible, if at all.” Laundry expert Patric Richardson adds they should be cleaned “after nine or 10 wearings, like to me, that is the ideal." At that point, they probably have stains and are "a little sweaty by that point, so you need to wash 'em," Richardson says.

Still, some people wash and dry them after every wear while others will hand wash and never hang dry. With all these significant differences of opinion, there must be a correct answer somewhere, right?

Keep ReadingShow less
Pop Culture

Someone questioned the Costco cake ordering system. You do not question the Costco cake system.

Lucy Huber was confronted by the Costco cake brigade when she posted about the antiquated way you have to order.

Photo by Annie Reneau

Costco cakes are huge, cheap and delicious. Every time.

Costco is known for many things—their employee satisfaction and retention, their amazing Kirkland Signature generic brand, their massive (and addictive) $4.99 rotisserie chickens, their never-going-to-raise-the-price $1.50 hot dog and soda meal and more.

But one favorite Costco feature that might just top them all? The Costco cake.

Costco cakes are legendary. If you've never had a Costco cake, I'm so sorry. If you have, then you know. They are the trifecta of awesome—huge, cheap and utterly delicious. I don't even like cake that much and I can't stop eating a Costco cake. Like, if you ordered a fancy cake from a fancy patisserie and it tasted like a Costco cake, you'd say, "Oh yeah, that was worth the $ I just paid." Only at Costco, you'd get that delicious of a cake that would feed a thousand people for just $25. (Okay, 50 people, but still—cake for days.)

This is why people have a serious loyalty to Costco cakes, which writer Lucy Huber discovered when she dared to question the Costco cake ordering process on Twitter.

Keep ReadingShow less

Kayleigh Donahue explains the differences between the U.S. and Europe.

American-born TikTok user Kayleigh Donahue is going viral on the platform because of her unflinching take on why it was a mistake for her to move back to the U.S. after spending 4 years in Ireland.

She now lives in the Boston area.

Kayleigh moved back to the U.S. from Ireland to make more money, but that didn’t go as planned. Even though she got paid more, the cost of living was so much higher that she saved less money than she did in Ireland. She also missed the generous number of vacation days she got in Europe as compared to America.

Keep ReadingShow less
Internet

People can’t get enough of adorable 4-year-old playing all parts of 'Madea' skit

“This little baby’s pantomiming skills are better than some professionals.”

Photos by Martin Lopez and Cottonbro Studios via Canva

People can't get enough of little boy's 'Madea' skit playing all parts

It's always amazing to see kids develop their talents through play. A lot of times kids move on quickly from one interest to another continuing to explore their interests while having fun. But every once in a while, parents discover not only a new talent that is suddenly unlocked, but one that they continue to be interested in beyond a fun few weeks.

One preschooler is taking the internet by storm with his incredible acting skills. Jordan Sunshine, who's only 4-years-old has racked up nearly 100K followers with the skits he does. In a recently uploaded video, Jordan pantomimed a skit from "Madea's Family Reunion, playing all the characters complete with outfit changes.

The video starts off as Jordan dressed as Nikki, who was played by a young KeKe Palmer in the film. Then comes Madea, also played by Jordan and Uncle Joe, sporting a white mustache with matching white hair.

Keep ReadingShow less