As the final season of the hit reality show American Idol nears its last-ever episode, banners, t-shirts and rallies in support of Amory native Trent Harmon are starting to show up in the Golden Triangle and other parts of North Mississippi.
Harmon is the second Amory native in a row to make it to Hollywood after singing for the judges, following Priscilla Barker last year. However, he is the first to be included in the top 14 finalists, having wowed audiences and judges alike with renditions of R&B songs that surprised those who thought a Mississippi-native like Harmon, who grew up on a farm, would stick mainly to country.
A small but devoted group of people, including his mother Cindy Harmon, and Caledonia resident Rebecca Bailey, have been drumming up support for the Mississippi contestant from Amory to Columbus to Tupelo. They have worked with leaders in different communities and plan to meet with Columbus mayor Robert Smith today in order to see what events they can do around Columbus.
“It’s a big deal,” said Amory mayor Brad Blalock. “He is the second to make it to Hollywood. He’s the first to make it as far as he’s gotten thus far. We think he’s got a really good shot at continuing on in the competition and of course we’re biased but we all really think that he’s got a shot at winning the last American Idol.”
Bailey and Cindy Harmon — as part of the group of Harmon supporters which is known as the “Harmonies” — have organized rallies and sold T-shirts to let local communities know how to support Trent in the upcoming weeks. They held a rally at the mall in Tupelo last Saturday. They tell people to “like” Trent Harmon Music on Facebook — where more than 14,000 people have done the same — and to invite friends to “like” it too. They also suggest going to American Idol’s Facebook page and talking about Trent so that judges know he has local support. Most of all — they want people to vote.
This week is the first week that audience members from around the country get to vote on which contestants stay on American Idol. Judges will choose eight of the 14 remaining contestants and then viewers will vote for two more.
The more Trent’s name is out there, the more people will support him, said Bailey. That local support also helps Harmon in Hollywood, said her husband Jake Bailey.
“It’s really important that we do support our fellow communities because we are Mississippians first and foremost,” Rebecca Bailey said.
“If anyone, anyone, whether it’s a big digital board or whether it’s just a little flashing sign at a gas station, no matter,” said Cindy. “There’s not one too big or too small. If you could just put ‘We love Trent’ or ‘Team Trent’ or anything about Trent on your business sign. If you know someone in the Columbus or Golden Triangle area, if you know someone who lives in another state, ask them to do it at their business. The main thing is just get Trent’s name out there, show your support.”
To find out more about Harmon, visit Trent Harmon Music on Facebook. To order t-shirts, send a message to Cindy Barnes Harmon on Facebook.
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