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Luke Bryan booed on American Idol over divisive critiques

The country star can bring out the tough love at times

luke bryan booed
Ahad Sanwari
Ahad SanwariSenior WriterNew York
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Luke Bryan has been known to be one of the more upbeat and light-hearted judges on the American Idol panel, but his recent critiques weren't exactly to every fan's liking.

MORE: Katy Perry talks disagreements with American Idol judges Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie

On the first installment featuring performances from the Top 20 in front of a large live audience, Luke's advice for singer Tristen Gressett divided many of the audience members.

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After delivering an action-packed performance of Sacrifice by The Weeknd, the country star was the first to deliver critiques, starting off with a series of positives.

He then said: "Now, it's not that your vocals were bad, but…," immediately being met by a round of boos from the audience. "Hold on, chill out!" he implored.

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"Y'all haven't heard him like I've heard him," he said, and fellow judge Lionel Richie simply turned to the crowd and uttered: "Hostility!"

Katy Perry tried to diffuse the tension by adding: "I appreciate that he rolled the dice," which was followed by an enthusiastic round of applause.

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Luke endured some booing from the crowds and his fellow judges

Luke continued: "But what I'm saying is that song may have put you in a little box vocally, and always make sure we hear those vocals. Anyway, I'm talking a lot and trying to claw myself out of a hole, and it's not working."

After the judges' comments, host Ryan Seacrest even came up on stage and quipped: "By the way, Luke, don't feel bad, that was just me and the producers booing, not the audience."

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MORE: Luke Bryan reveals hilariously chaotic American Idol moment after disagreement with Katy Perry

The Crash My Party singer even took to social media soon after the moment aired to share a clip imploring viewers to "stop booing" and go vote instead, with Katy even popping in to do some jeering herself.

"Just getting the people riled up enough to VOTE !" Ryan commented with a crying laughing emoji to keep the conversation light and fun.

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Tristen Gressett's performance divided the judging panel

The episode did continue on in a more dynamic and euphoric way as more of the contestants advancing to the Top 20 were revealed and past Idol contestants returned to perform.

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