casey abrams esperanza spalding Esperanza Spalding gets an 'American Idol' shout out from Casey AbramsOn Wednesday night’s (April 13) “American Idol” movie songs episode, Casey Abrams went far, far off the beaten path by performing Nat King Cole’s version of “Nature Boy,” complete with upright bass and old-timey microphone.

During his judges’ comments (which included some extra special Steven Tyler gibberish), all three judges were praising his artistry and his choice to go outside the box. Randy said he hopes America gets it and likes it. Casey responded by name-dropping “Esperanza” – and had millions of people rushing to the ‘net to find out who he was talking about.

Casey was talking about none other than Esperanza Spalding, the Grammy-award winner who snatched up the Best New Artist Grammy at the 2011 awards show from the clutches of Justin Bieber, much to the consternation of his legion of fans.

Esperanza is a musician who plays multiple instruments, but is best known as a jazz bassist and singer. She has performed at the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize ceremony and at the Evening of Poetry, Music & the Spoken Word. 

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."