When Ashly Williams appeared on The X Factor, she had quite the story to tell. She had been through a lot over the years, and now that she finally made it to the big stage, the only thing she wished was different was that her mother could be there to witness it.
“This is the moment that I’ve been waiting for, the moment that my mother would have been proud to see me accomplish,” said Ashly in an interview before the performance.
At the age of 14, she received the horrible news that her mother was murdered.
It’s something no child ever expects to happen and we can’t imagine how difficult it must have been for her.
Afterward, Ashly threw herself completely into singing and used all of the pain to fuel her dream.
In the end, the hard work paid off. The song she decided to sing for judges that day was “I Will Always Love You”, by Whitney Houston. It was a tribute to her mom.
As soon as Ashly started singing, it immediately became obvious how much the song meant to her.
The emotion in her voice was undeniable and she sang so beautifully.
The judges and the crowd alike were totally mesmerized.
No one could take their eyes off of her, and even Simon Cowell, the normally quite cold British judge, cracked a smile.
Ashly finished her emotional rendition of the song to roaring applause.
Everyone in the arena was up on their feet cheering her on, the judges included.
The singer couldn’t believe it and broke down in tears.
“Thank you,” she told the audience.
“You know what, it’s so funny. You’re saying thank you everybody and it’s beautiful and it’s humbling,” said Kelly Rowland, “but thank you, baby girl, for spilling your heart out in that vocal.”
Demi Lovato agreed as well.
“Ashley, I’m like speechless. I had chills all over my arms and legs. And I can feel it in you, I can feel that heart, and guess what? There’s a place in the market for you,” said Demi.
That comment brought a big smile to Ashly’s face. “I’m shaking,” she said.
However, after Simon made his judgment is when everyone really went wild.
“You know what, Ashley? This is why we brought the show to America — to find somebody like you,” said Simon.
Ashly’s family and friends backstage were overjoyed. They all began excitedly jumping around and clapping, while Ashly herself could barely speak.
“Simon I waited to hear those words…” said Ashly. “Oh My!”
She was so happy and it was heartwarming to watch.
It’s great that despite her loss, she still has so much support in her life from friends and family. They all came running out onto the stage to give her a giant group hug too, which was a very nice surprise.
Of course, every one of the four judges gave her a “yes”, sending Ashly onto the next round of the competition. All in all, it was one of our favorite performances on the show. While it was definitely a difficult and emotional journey for Ashly to get to where she is now, it is so amazing how things turned out for her.
Watch the full video of Ashly Williams singing “I Will Always Love You” on The X Factor below.
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