A guy named Matt Farmer rides in the backseat next to his adorable daughter, Cadence. Outside the audition room, Ryan gets Matt to tell him his backstory, which starts with an IED in Iraq, a photo of an upside-down Humvee with its back end blown clear off and the word he got from the doctors that the brain medication Matt would have to take would render him sterile. And yet here's little Cadence, repudiating that prognosis with her very existence. So of course Matt carries her right into the audition room. The judges let him talk about the tattoos on his arm memorializing his fallen comrades, and then he sings "A Change is Gonna Come" by Sam Cooke. He's a good singer, but I'm even more impressed with how that two-year-old stands quietly next to him and doesn't try to wander off or interrupt like mine did at that age (and let's face it, still does). The judges like him too, and give him three yeses. And then he and his wife are cute with their daughter some more. So his wife is there? Either he was pandering by bringing his daughter in the audition room or Cadence doesn't like her mom much.
Stephanie Sanson thinks she's all edgy and shit with her purple hair and her whole band there, but then she announces that she'll be singing Adele's "Set Fire to the Rain" so obviously she's full of shit. But she adds another layer when she starts jumping up and down and screaming the lyrics, waving her extended middle fingers, all the way out of the audition room. The judges mock and flunk her in absentia, although Keith says Nicki would have voted to send her to Hollywood. Whatever, Stephanie clearly accomplished what she set out to do.
So Nicki finishes up rehearsing for the AMAs and shows up just in time to hear an audition from a cruisewear-clad nerd named Jesaiah Baer, who's singing "Settle Down" by Kimbra. She's barely started when fire alarms go off and strobes start flashing. It looks like an evacuation is in order, although the judges move so slowly that if there were a real fire they would already be meeting their richly deserved fate at the bottom of the harbor.
We come back at 2:00 PM and learn that, apparently, the alarms were triggered by nothing more than smoke from a cooking fire at a neighboring restaurant. Jesaiah gets to come back to the audition room and start over, after Ryan makes a crack about how the fire was the result of Randy's lunch being made. Turns out she can actually sing, with some decent jazzy bits. Now if she can just stop fiddling nervously with her captain's hat during all the compliments she gets. Leave that thing at home when you go to Hollywood, sweetie.