Preparing to sing Marvin Gaye's "Heard It Through the Grapevine" on Wednesday night's "American Idol," Candice Glover felt more than all right.
"I feel great," the St. Helena Island native said in a phone interview this week. "I was really worried because the song was done by a lot of different legendary people, but I am going to try and do my own thing and try and put my own spin on it, so hopefully it'll turn out good."
The judges thought she did exactly that.
"You've raised the bar exponentially," judge Keith Urban said.
"You stayed in it completely," judge Nicki Minaj said. "You do a great job of not overdoing it."
"I love that you came out and you said 'You know what? I'm going to show everyone what I can do,'" judge Randy Jackson said. "You believe that you belong, because you do. Effortless, it was crazy good."
"In a lot of ways, you epitomize what this competition is about," judge Mariah Carey said. "You were gritty when you wanted to be, pretty when you wanted to be. We're going to hear more of that from you in this competition in the end, because I know you're going to be there that long."
Glover said her favorite moment of the season happened this week when she met Smokey Robinson, this week's show mentor.
"To meet him, I was just smiling and acting like a fool the whole time," Glover said.
Robinson said watching Glover's Top 10 performance of Ben E. King's "I Who Have Nothing" moved him to tears.
At the beginning of Wednesday's show, Glover looked a little frazzled walking out on the stage with the rest of the Top 8.
After her performance, host Ryan Seacrest asked her what was going on.
"I was losing it, all the pressure," Glover told him. "Going first, you have to start strong. I'm chilling now."