Loveable Garbage Man Auditions For ‘American Idol’ For His Daughter — Where Is He Now?


Doug Kiker from Alabama had one of the most memorable auditions of season 18 of American Idol. He had no formal performing experience prior to his audition, but that didn’t stop him from making his mark on the competition. Check out his incredible audition below and keep reading to find out where he is now.

Garbage Man Doug Kiker Inspired The World With His ‘American Idol’ Audition

Immediately the judges were hooked by Doug’s infectious personality. But before he could sing for them, Lionel Richie suggested that he go and warm up first. Doug was not sure how exactly to warm up but had some help from Ryan Seacrest. Ryan whisked him away to practice and he came back ready to wow the judges.

Doug made it clear that his reason for auditioning for American Idol was to show his 2-year-old daughter that she can do anything. He sang “God Bless the Broken Road” by Rascal Flatts. During his audition, he tripped on the American Idol mat on the floor and let out a laugh. It just made him even more adorable. Plus, his smile, despite missing some teeth lit up the entire room.


Katy asked if Doug could show off his range a little bit more. He replied that he does not know what that means exactly but was down to try. Luke Bryan jumped on the piano to help Doug find his range during the song. Katy and Lionel loved it and gave him a standing ovation. “Doug, do you understand what you just did?” Lionel asked. “Not really” he replied.

“For a man who does not know what his voice can do, for a man who has no idea what key he’s singing in, for a man who has no idea who the heck he can be, he’s here to do one thing: He’s trying to show his daughter that he’s somebody,” Lionel said. “I want us all to let you know, you’re a hell of a man. I want you to come get this ticket. You’re going to Hollywood!” Katy let out some tears as Doug grabbed his golden ticket.

Hollywood Week Proved To Be Quite The Challenge For Doug

After his American Idol audition went viral, everyone was looking forward to see what Doug would do during Hollywood Week. He was placed into the “Soul” category of the Genre Challenge singing “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell. The judges commented that Doug was singing in the wrong key but they still love him.

He shed tears after his performance because he wanted to provide everything for his daughter. Doug was sent home by the judges after America fell in love with him. It was a bit disappointing.

Doug returned to sing with Rascal Flatts in the finale episode showing off a new set of teeth. He first debuted the new smile during a home check-in episode of American Idol when the show was forced to go virtual amid the pandemic.

If you were inspired by Doug’s American Idol journey, make sure you check out the compilation below. It features talent competition acts that truly made a huge impact when they auditioned.

Where Is Doug Kiker Now?

Doug became a huge fan-favorite on American Idol and announced that he would be raising money to make an album. He has a goal of $25,000 and has since raised $6,000. Doug and his partner also welcomed another daughter Kalinah Ann Kiker since his audition.

While Doug is on the road to creating an album, he continues to upload covers on Instagram and YouTube. He urges his fans to share his music and donate to his fundraiser if possible.


What did you think of Doug’s American Idol journey?


Samantha Agate
Samantha Agate

Samantha Agate is the Talent Guru here at Talent Recap. Her work has been featured at The Blast. Samantha graduated from Hunter College in 2019 with a degree in Media Studies and a Concentration in Journalism. When she isn't binge-watching reality television shows or binge-eating fried food, she loves hanging out with her friends and family and petting puppies.

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