55-year-old janitor shocks 'America's Got Talent' judges with 'truly special' performance, earns rare gold buzzer | The Gateway expert

Steve Perry didn't reunite with Journey for this week's episode of “America's Got Talent,” but an unassuming high school janitor named Richard Goodall did a phenomenal job for him.

Goodall amazed the audience and of the show judges and even earned a rare “golden buzzer” from model and judge Heidi Klum.

The 55-year-old custodian from Terre Haute, Indianajoined the NBC show for the 19th season premiere and crushed a rendition of Journey's 1981 smash hit, “Don't Stop Believin.” ”

Introducing himself to the show in a pre-recorded interview, Goodall explained that he spent his time releasing songs while keeping a Midwestern school clean for students, staff and administrators.

The shy man, who said he was waiting to call his fiancée after his performance, told host Terry Crews in an interview that he lived a simple life.

“I'm not a fancy person. I take out the trash, I wipe the tables, I sweep the floors. I just have fun and I try to make people happy,” Goodall said.

He said he loved entertaining people, especially children attending the show school that employs him.

Once he took the stage, the tension was palpable. Goodall humbly told the judge Simon Cowell he was happy to be there and that his dream was to become a singer.

“I like to sing,” he said.

After Goodall said that very few people knew he had traveled to the Los Angeles area to audition for the show, the iconic piano intro for what is perhaps Journey's most recognizable hit began playing as a 'nervous' Goodall waited to deliver the opening line.

His voice sounded as if it had been borrowed from Perry.

Goodall's opening line – “Just a small-town girl” – immediately drew applause and shocked looks from the judges.

After scoring the song, Goodall stood on stage and waited for feedback from judges Cowell, Klum, Howie Mandel and Sofia Vergara.

The show's live studio audience also sang his name and gave him a standing ovation.

After Cowell explained that Goodall's performance was “really special” and called him a “hero,” Vergara also praised him.

“This was a wonderful surprise,” said the former “Modern Family” star.

Mandel then opined that the unassuming janitor from Indiana had “cleaned it up.”

Klum put an exclamation point on the moment she said Goodall moved her, or as she put it, “You knocked me over.”

“This is what I'm going to do for you because I love you,” she said as she smashed her golden buzzer – marking a stellar performance that elevated Goodall straight from auditions to live shows.

As she hugged him onstage, Klum told Goodall, “I can't wait to see what you sing next.”

Goodall explained that performing in front of the show's audience and judges was not only a dream come true, but to achieve it he had to board a plane for the first time to California.

________________________________________________________

This article originally appeared on The Western Journal.

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