Auditions are currently underway for Season 18 of America’s Got Talent and rising country singer, Mitch Rossell has joined the latest pool of contestants hoping to stand out among the judges and the audience.
In a new clip shared by the competition show, fans are taken through Rossell’s emotional audition before it officially airs on NBC on Tuesday, June 6.
As he began to share his story, the singer/songwriter explained how his late father had a major impact on his love for music growing up.
“The way I got into music is my dad. When I was a kid, I would ride with him in the car, and we’d just listen to country music together. We just sang the songs together and we both loved it so much. We definitely had a connection through music and it just meant a lot to him.”
Rossell went on to share that despite living in poverty, his dad found a way to buy him a guitar so that he could be more immersed in music. Then, with tears in his eyes, he revealed that at just 10 years old, he lost his father in a tragic drunk-driving incident.
Tragedy To Triumph
“It was kind of a freak accident. It was a real small town, my grandfather just happened to be driving in his truck coming one way on a highway and my dad and my grandmother-in-law were in his work van coming back from a job. They were about to cross each other and the drunk driver hit my grandfather from behind and sent him into my dad’s lane. My grandfather, grandmother-in-law and my dad all lost their lives.”
While this created incredible challenges for Rossell’s life going forward, he found a form of peace by continuing to pursue his father’s love for music. So he picked the guitar back up, began to play local shows and now, he’s sharing abilities with the world through America’s Got Talent.
Stepping in front of judges, Howie Mandel, Heidi Klum, Sofia Vergara and Simon Cowell, the East Tennessee native explained that he would be performing his original song, “Son,” which he dubbed the “most personal thing I’ve ever written.”
The song was released in the beginning of 2023 and finds Rossell honoring his promise to his late father by pursuing his musical talents and using his impressive vocals to heal painful memories. As he puts pen to paper with Dave Turnbull, the East Tennessee native delivers his utmost raw emotions.
It was clear that the singer captivated the hearts of each person in the room as he poured out his raw emotions in the unforgettable chorus.
“Son I hope you know how much I love you / And when you’re not with me / I’m always thinking of you / You’re the drive inside my heart / The reason I reach for the stars above / He said my world revolves around you / That’s why I call you son,” Rossell sings in the heartfelt chorus.
With each note, the song peels away a new layer of the multi-generational storyline of the love between a father and son. Without a doubt, the sorrowful ballad strikes a chord with anyone who has experienced any form of loss and constructs a mindful space for comfort and healing.
“This song is a journey through my childhood; a painful picture of how I lost my Dad and the healing I found with the birth of my first son,” Rossell previously shared of the song. “‘Son’ is by far the most personal song I’ve ever put on paper and is my life story. It’s my way to honor my father’s legacy and the love he poured into me.”
As the song came to an end, the entire room stood to their feet to celebrate his singing and songwriting abilities.
“You wrote a beautiful song there,” said Klum. “I feel like everyone in this room was feeling everything that you were singing.”
Mandel added, “The words and the emotion that you sing with, you know, as a father also…what a great sentiment, what great beautiful words. Such simple brilliance.” This prompted Rossell to share that he has a son of his own who inspired this full-circle track.
A Chart-Topping Prediction
The judge then predicted this performance would lead “Son” to becoming a No. 1 hit by the next morning.
It was Vergara’s turn to compliment Rossell, as she said his audition was “spectacular” and that his voice is “amazing.”
Simon, who’s typically known for being tough on the contestants that come before him, declared that he “loved every part of that” before adding, “I love your voice, I love the song. It was a compliment, the fact that you could hear a pin drop during the entire performance. And it was sincere. I really think people are going to connect with you. This was a great audition.”
Without an ounce of hesitation, each judge gave Mitch Rossell a “yes,” giving him the opportunity to move on to the next round. Before making his way off the stage, Howie yelled over the applause saying, “That’s a star.”
Outside of his new venture on the show, Rossell has continued to round up a loyal fanbase through his original songs like “All I Need To See,” “2020,” and “Ran Into You” ft. Trisha Yearwood.
He also previously served as support on Garth Brooks’ 2022 stadium tour. With just an acoustic guitar, the budding artist managed to win over thousands of country fans each night he took the stage.
Brooks has continued to show great support for Mitch Rossell and his flourishing career. In addition to opening for the country legend nationwide, Rossell has also written four of Brooks’ singles, including “Ask Me How I Know,” which marked his first No. 1 single, as well as several co-writes, “That’s What Cowboys Do,” “All Day Long,” and “Dive Bar.”
Viewers will be able to watch Mitch Rossell’s journey unfold on America’s Got Talent as the season airs every Tuesday night on NBC. He also has a few performances on the books for June in North Freedom, WI and Mchenry, IL.