It must feel good to be David Cook. Even if he doesn’t win American Idol, he’s still got a partnership with one of the giants of pop to fall back on.

Lionel Richie has said that he was so blown away by David’s grungy cover of his 1984 hit “Hello” that he wants to release it as a single. "I am putting that song out myself, with David on it. That is a smash record that David did the other night. I couldn’t believe it," Lionel raved. "David just played it as if it was his song from the beginning— there was no Lionel Richie involved. He had the arrangement. It was fabulous. He just killed it."

David, 25, from Bluesprings, Missouri, secured his place in the final 12 when he played the song on last week’s 1980s-themed show. Simon Cowell said of the performance, "I like people who go out there and take a few risks, and it was unpredicatable and it worked."

Of course, there have been rumblings about whether David’s version was quite the lighting-bolt of originality that Lionel and the judges seem to believe. Fans of the band Incubus have pointed out that the Calabasus, California, group were doing a rocked-out take on the Motown smash as far back as 2003.

Check out the video below for the Icubus renition at their Lolapolooza show:

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