Bobby Bones shares best advice for 'American Idol' hopefuls, previews Hollywood Week

The in-house mentor says that Hollywood Week is when you'll really get to see the "Idol" hopefuls shine.
Bobby Bones is thrilled to be back as the in-house mentor on "American Idol," and said that everyone is more excited to go back into the studio this season than ever before.

"There is a new energy for sure on 'American Idol,'" the TV and radio personality said.

While helping the "Idol" hopefuls ace their performances, Bones said there's one main focus for these singers: Reminding them that they're not just playing to family, friends and their phones, like they may have gotten used to over the course of the pandemic.

"What I've been working with them on are live performance tips to real people," Bones said.

Many of the contestants have amassed large followings on social media, but will they be able to impress the judges onstage?

"They can play the keys or guitar and sing, but it's difficult to go from playing in your bedroom with the phone propped up to playing this massive theater -- not only to the judges but also the other contestants," Bones continued. "I give them exercises to do, so they don't freak out and get nervous."

What's Bones' greatest piece of advice he's been giving the contestants? To be confident in who you are and to own it.

"You only have two minutes to give your whole life story and your performance," Bones said. "You want them to feel they know a little more after you've left the stage than before you walked on it, so you have to know who you are as an artist."

The mentor said competing on "Idol" is harder than it used to be, because all of the contestants are coming in with incredible talent and experience.

"It's a different ballgame and Hollywood Week is when you really get to see that for the first time," Bones said.

Hollywood Week on "American Idol" airs Sunday and Monday at 8 p.m. on ABC7.
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