How Seven Failed Auditions on ‘The Voice’ Lit a Fire Under Lainey Wilson, and Her “Surreal” Return to the Show

Country star Lainey Wilson returned to the set of The Voice recently for the season 25 finale. While on the red carpet, Wilson chatted with Cassie DiLaura from Entertainment Tonight about what it was like being back on the NBC show.

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For fans of Wilson who may not watch The Voice, it might be surprising to hear that Wilson was once a contestant on the show… seven times. You read that right! Wilson auditioned for the show seven different times and was let down each time.

“I didn’t even make it to the part where they turn their chairs around,” said Wilson.

Lainey Wilson’s Auditions on ‘The Voice’

Wilson struggled to get recognition early on in her career. She’s not alone, either. Fellow country star Luke Combs didn’t get anywhere on The Voice, nor did singer Maren Morris.

[See Lainey Wilson Live In Concert In 2024]

In addition to auditioning seven times on The Voice, Lainey Wilson said that she also tried out seven times on American Idol. After so many auditions, she finally made it to Idol only to be eliminated in the first round.

It’s a pretty legendary backstory if you think about it, considering where Wilson is today. She didn’t let the rejections get to her. In fact, she said it “lit a fire” under her to keep pushing forward with her music career.

“I’ve known that this is my calling, and there’s nothing else I want to do that I can do,” Wilson told People in an interview. “I’ve always just been like, ‘No plan B. This is it.’”

It all seems worth it, though. During the finale of The Voice, Reba McEntire invited Wilson to become a member of the Grand Ole Opry. It was an emotional moment. And we think that’s a bit cooler than becoming a contestant on The Voice!

Photo via X, courtesy of NBC

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