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Maren Morris And Other Stars Rejected from ‘American Idol’

When God closes three doors on you, he opens up an even better one. Maren Morris was eliminated from American Idol, The Voice, and America’s Got Talent, but came back to be a giant star!

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

We’re going to take a peek at Maren Morris, and other big stars who were rejected by singing competitions.

1. Maren Morris

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

The 28 year old country singer tried out for three talent shows, and didn’t make the cut for either. In contrast, now she is a Grammy winning artist who’s last album got more streams in a week than any other country album in 2019. She first stepped into the limelight in 2016 with her hit “My Church” and has been growing more popular ever since. When she appeared on Watch What Happens Live, she was asked about her rejections from the shows. Maren told the caller, “Now people cover my songs for their auditions on those shows, so it’s like, not only is it really nice to have my song on a national television show, [but] I get to collect the check and have some sweet revenge.”

2. Bebe Rexha

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

Now signed with Def Jam, Bebe has seen great success in her music career since being rejected from American Idol. Bebe has come back to mentor Idol hopefuls to help them avoid mistakes she may have made on the show. She has been a writer on huge hits such as “The Monster” by Eminem and Rihanna which won the Grammy for best rap song. She released her own single, “Meant to Be” that went platinum, and her album “Expectations” that went certified gold.

3. Naya Rivera

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

The singer and co-star of the hit show Glee had previously tried her hand in TV when she tried out for American Idol. Rivera tried out for the show in San Francisco where she was cut in the first round. Interestingly, she used the same song to book the job on Glee, that she was rejected from American Idol with. She went on to earn a Grammy nomination for her vocal performance on Glee.

4. Amber Riley

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

Another veteran of the hit show Glee, Amber Riley tried out for American Idol at 17, but never even made it in front of the judges. Though it may not have worked out for her on Idol, her career has blown up and she’s enjoying great success. In addition to being on Glee, she played the lead in “Dream Girls” on the West End, where she won the Laurence Olivier award for best actress. Furthermore she was the winner of Dancing with the Stars season 17, and was a judge on the British theater competition, Let It Shine.

5. Colbie Caillat

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

The two time Grammy award winner auditioned for twice, but never made it past auditions. She even tried out singing her original song, “Bubbly” which went on to become a hit. Like Bebe Rexha she has recently joined the mentors on Idol to aid up-and-coming singers succeed. She’s now a Grammy winning artist, and has sold over six million albums around the world.

6. Tori Kelly

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

The 26 year old California singer gained notoriety when she was 14 posting her music on YouTube. When she was 16 she made it onto American Idol, but was eliminated before the top 24. Since then she’s caught the attention of manager Scooter Braun who represents Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande. As a result, she’s been signed to Capitol Records and her career continues to flourish.

7. Hillary Scott

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

The front woman of the famed country group Lady Antebellum, Hillary Scott started out by auditioning for American Idol. The songstress tried out for Idol twice but never made it past the first round. She enjoys enormous success after forming Lady Antebellum and had won 5 Grammys from 10 nominations.

8. Mickey Guyton

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

The 35 year old country music singer from Texas may be the most surprising on this list. Her voice is undeniably beautiful and I can’t think of how she may have been eliminated from any singing competition. When she was 22 she tried out for American Idol, and didn’t make it through. Since then she was signed to Capitol Nashville and was nominated by the Academy of Country music for New Female Vocalist of the Year.

9. Kane Brown

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

Friends with the American Idol runner up, Lauren Alaina, Kaine thought he’d try his own hand on the Idol stage. While having a great voice, he was considered too similar to Scotty McCreery and didn’t seem to fit for the show at that time. For that reason, he tried out for the X-Factor and made it through. Kaine ended up quitting that show when the producers tried to put him into a boy band. Since then he has continued to release music and has a growing fan base in the country scene.

10. Mary Lambert

Matt Beck | Talent Recap

The singer/songwriter from Washington who’s most famous for her work with Macklemore & Ryan Lewis tried out for American Idol at 16 and didn’t go very far. She’s enjoyed great success releasing music since then, and puts herself at the forefront for LGBTQ rights. Interestingly, she is now dating The Voice’s Season 4 runner-up Michelle Chamuel.


Matt Beck