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You don’t have to win American Idol to have a successful career – just ask Jennifer Hudson, Chris Daughtry and Adam Lambert. Now add Ayla Brown’s name to that list.
The leggy brunette, who’s the daughter of former Massachusetts senator Scott Brown, made Idol’s top 16 in 2006, and since then she’s released four albums, appeared as a correspondent on CBS’ Early Show and played basketball in the NCAA.
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But on May 25, the country singer achieved a lifelong dream when she made her debut at the historic Grand Ole Opry in Nashville on a bill that included Vince Gill.
“I remember going to my first Opry show when I moved to Nashville two years ago,” Ayla says. “I thought to myself, ‘If I ever get to perform at the Opry then I’ll know I’ve made it.’”
The 24-year-old performed two songs from her new Heroes & Hometowns album – “Hero in Her Hometown” and “Pride of America,” which will be released as a single on July 4.
Ayla’s dad Tweeted his excitement about heading to Nashville to watch Ayla perform last night. And while it’s clear that he’s proud of his oldest daughter, she’s just as proud of her father. “My dad is the hardest worker I know,” she says. “Not only was he my first coach on the basketball court, he taught me about discipline, the value of a dollar, how to treat and include others and so many life lessons.”
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The former senator, who was named Cosmopolitan magazine’s Sexiest Man at the age of 22, might even be joining Ayla on stage soon.
“He’s been taking guitar lessons,” she reveals. “We both have a dream that he will be able to jump on stage with me and play along to some of my songs.”