American Idol | Lazaro Arbos | Music | News

Adorable Stuttering Contestant Wows 'American Idol' Judges: VIDEO


Lazaro Arbos's story is the kind these shows were made for. A speech impediment that for years caused him to hardly be able to speak and made him an outcast at school is overcome when it's time to sing.


(via dlisted)

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  1. People, he is young and obviously has the instrument and probably hasn't received the tools to learn how to use it yet.

    It's like any other person with musical talent. Start playing the piano/violin/any other instrument by ear and figure out simple melodies and chords to easy pieces? Sure! A lot of musicians start that way, including myself 23 years ago! Put this person in front of a piano (in my case) with the simplest sheet music with no concept of technique, fingering, or dynamics and nothing will happen.

    The voice is the same.

    So from a musician to all the other musicians - think about where you'd be without your years of training. I wouldn't be able to play how I play without hours and hours and hours of practice and training and recitals to get over the nerve aspect of performing. That voice is definitely trainable. He also seemed extremely nervous, which we all know can mess up any performance. Judging from his story, he hasn't had a ton of social interaction and suddenly is in front of some of the most famous people in the world trying to get his words out.

    Musicians and performers are all the same...always poo pooing anyone that isn't exactly like everyone else...talent is 20% of it. The rest is hard work and dedication and style (no, not clothing).

    Posted by: Cody | Jan 18, 2013 6:24:11 PM

  2. He is a cute kid, and I agree that his voice is good but not remarkable. I worry about guys like him in these competitions. He seems so fragile and not winning (which he probably won't) could really damage him, but the AI machine will roll on and leave him out cold. I hope that he gets the confidence and the help he needs to help him speak.

    Posted by: Chadd | Jan 18, 2013 6:24:37 PM

  3. It would be so awesome if he did Jazmine Sullivan's "Stuttering" on the live show if he makes it that far (which of course he will).

    Posted by: Jase | Jan 18, 2013 6:44:43 PM

  4. Hits home because my father also stuttered, but it all went away when he sang too!

    Posted by: Rexford | Jan 18, 2013 7:03:37 PM

  5. The very first season of Pop Idol runner up ( also had stutters, so good luck, kid!

    Posted by: iban4yesu | Jan 18, 2013 7:19:57 PM

  6. I was just sitting there with nothing to do and the TV was on. I didn’t care for most of the “talent” except for this guy and the “street singer.” I think they both did great. I wonder if Lazaro got speech therapy from a therapist recommended by the Stuttering Foundation. They have a great web site with online videos and ebooks, too. I have a friend who stutters who has gotten help from them.

    Posted by: Tina | Jan 18, 2013 7:23:33 PM

  7. He's adorable, I want to marry him. A decent singer and a heart of gold, clearly. I wonder how much his father and his sexuality has to do with his stutter.... hhmmm.

    Posted by: Simon Wilson | Jan 18, 2013 7:35:24 PM

  8. So. This clip brought a tear to my eye.

    That being said, on a different note, this is the first time since Simon was a judge that I've seen any part of American Idol, and I must say that this is a totally lifeless batch of judges. Boringggg!!!!

    Posted by: RedOnTheGreg | Jan 18, 2013 9:31:55 PM

  9. Ditto on Lazaro and the "Street Singer". The Street Singer was so real, so refreshing, so talented, not like the cat squalls of the other contestants.

    Posted by: Bill Michael | Jan 19, 2013 12:48:01 AM

  10. He's adorable and I found his voice truly beautiful. I for one loved him and loved his charm.

    Old, b-tchy, bitter queens...don't be angry these kids are pursuing the dreams you were too fearful to. And get over yourselves.

    Posted by: L.C | Jan 19, 2013 1:40:05 AM

  11. You go boy!

    Adorable, sweet, strong, talented.

    And he's more talented than some 60% of the contestants I've seen on that show. Most of the Top 3 on this show are complete CRAP and far, farrrr worse than this guy. This guy has soul both in his singing and personality.

    Posted by: Duration & Convexity | Jan 19, 2013 1:41:18 AM

  12. He's fantastic and inspiring. I now have a new favorite to root for, not just because of his story, but because I'm sick of seeing the same farmer, straight, Christian, generic guy with a guitar win every dang year.

    Posted by: Kyle | Jan 19, 2013 1:42:00 AM

  13. i love Lazaro... he isn't faking it... My Partner stutters from time to time... it is such a difficult affliction.... I'm getting a possible "HOME TEAM" vibe too... which would make me love him all the more !! LOL..

    Posted by: Martin | Jan 19, 2013 1:49:16 AM

  14. My best friend growing up had a bad stutter. I would often tell strangers in advance who ha to listen to him for this or that reason that he stuttered, and to please be patient, he wasn't retarded or anything like that. But he was a FUNNY kid...very good sense of humor. Still stutters today. His sarcastic jokes were even more funny because of his stutter.

    I was a late talker. My older sisters and mom told me I was a great infant and young child, never cried or caused a fuss, I just wouldn't talk. But I would hum songs I heard on the radio. I was almost 4 before I started to really talk clearly. Specialist doctor at Harvard told my mom there was nothing wrong with me, I was smart, I just didn't want to talk and would when I had something to say. He was right, I'm still like that today. And my I.Q. is well above average.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Jan 19, 2013 11:10:16 AM

  15. thankfully my stutter got better, but yeah, I still do it, and it sucks big time. He's got my vote, if I voted for such things.

    Posted by: Ryon | Jan 19, 2013 12:30:32 PM

  16. So inspirational!This teen is not pretending at all and it took him a lot of courage to come on stage
    Stuttering and singing are possible due to a scientific reason : each one uses a different part of the brain.
    Poeple who had a stroke might not be able to talk again but will be able to communicate by singing!

    Posted by: Dan Howley | Jan 19, 2013 2:59:26 PM

  17. He's very good. He needs to get deeper into the meaning of the text and he needs a good vocal coach.

    Posted by: TomTallis | Jan 19, 2013 4:09:44 PM

  18. It seems that Mother Nature has compensated him for the stitter by making him so physically beautiful and giving him a beautiful voice.

    Posted by: andrew | Jan 19, 2013 5:04:55 PM

  19. What a wonderful moment.
    I hope he turns out to be gay and out.

    Posted by: Hephaestion | Jan 19, 2013 5:57:55 PM

  20. Okay, that brought tears to my eyes. Having said that...he needs some vocal training. I didn't care for his phrasing and I found the accent that kept creeping in to be distracting. But that's just me. And with some training, I think this young man could be great!

    And yes, he's gorgeous...and apparently gay since he went so gaga over Mimi.

    Posted by: peterparker | Jan 19, 2013 7:33:40 PM

  21. loved this guy. good luck to him

    Posted by: Reality | Jan 19, 2013 9:19:44 PM

  22. Singing and stuttering are not related. Speech is a left-brain function while singing is a right-brain function. Lazaro Arbos is like many famous singers who struggle with stuttering. These singers - such as Mel Tillis, Gareth Gates, Marc Anthony, Bill Withers, B.B. King - are on the lsit of Famous People Who Stutter on the website of The Stuttering Foundation ( - there is also a section "Celebrity Corner" with in-depth articles on this people.

    The website provides many free resources to help people who stutter such as streaming videos and downloadable materials....... check out the brochure "Special Education Law and Children Who Stutter" that explains the little-known law that every child in the U.S. with any kind of speec h problem has the right to FREE speech therapy from preschool through high school

    Posted by: Clive Epstein | Jan 19, 2013 9:40:57 PM

  23. Beyond adorable! Might be enough to get me to watch Idol again.

    Posted by: MS | Jan 20, 2013 4:00:46 PM

  24. What a beautiful clip. WOW. I am speechless.

    Posted by: robert Peterson | Jan 20, 2013 8:22:51 PM

  25. No one can stop u 2 me u lready won!

    Posted by: btrnda | Feb 10, 2013 7:29:02 PM

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