Lee DeWyze Auditions for 'American Idol' Season 9

Last year, "American Idol" was back in Chicago holding auditions for the popular Fox TV show, and DeWyze's buddy Vincent Ferrara convinced him to try out.

They arrived at the United Center at 4 a.m. on a hot morning in June. Thousands of other people did the same.

DeWyze almost didn't make it to the front of the line.

"He wanted to go home," Ferrara said. "It was so hot out, and the line was so long. But I told him, 'No way, you have some serious talent, we're staying.'"

DeWyze sang "Stand By Me" and "Lean on Me" for producers. He moved on. Ferrara did not.

Finally, DeWyze stood in front of "Idol" judges Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi and guest judge Shania Twain.

DeWyze belted out "Ain't No Sunshine;" he got his ticket to Hollywood.