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Garbage Man Auditions for ‘American Idol’ to Show Young Daughter ‘There’s Nothing You Can’t Do’

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Doug Kiker tried out for American Idol to show his daughter that you can do anything you put your mind to. He is now going to Hollywood for the next round.


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Tré Goins-Phillips

“I’m trying to show her if you put your mind to it, there’s nothing you can’t do.”

That’s the answer 27-year-old Doug Kiker, a garbage man in Mobile, Alabama, told the judges of American Idol after Lionel Ritchie asked him why he chose to try out for the competitive singing show.

The “her” he was talking about is his 2-year-old daughter.

Kiker grew up in Greensboro and is a married father of two. He works full-time on a garbage truck for Advanced Disposal. But following his audition on American Idol, he was given a golden ticket, sending him to Hollywood.

Because auditions are still airing, though, and no one yet knows what will happen in Hollywood, it’s not clear how far he has progressed. Regardless, his story made quite an impact on the judges.

At one point, Luke Bryan stepped out from behind the judges’ desk to play piano beside Kiker, helping him figure out his own vocal range as he sang Rascal Flatts’ song Bless the Broken Road.

When his emotional audition was over, all three judges—Ritchie, Bryan and Katy Perry—stood up to give Kiker hugs. All three judges were clearly moved by the encounter.

“You just stay who you are and you’re gonna go so far,” Perry told Kiker as he was leaving with his golden ticket. “And you’re gonna take your daughter with you to all the highest heights.”