Singer Colbie Caillat might not have felt so “Bubbly” after she auditioned for American Idol. The 32-year-old singer actually tried out for the reality competition twice during its FOX run… but you can be forgiven if you don’t remember seeing her on camera. As Colbie reiterated in the ABC revivals April 16 episode, she was axed at the pre-audition stage and didn’t even get to sing for the judges!
“I was in the auditions that you are outside with thousands of people,” Colbie told Today in 2011 (per the Daily News). “You sleep on the street.” On her second tryout, she even performed “Bubbly,” her Platinum-certified debut single.
But she doesn’t hold a grudge against Idol, it seems. In an interview with USA Today (per Rolling Stone), she said she understands why she got the boot: “I was shy. I was nervous. I didn’t look the greatest. I wasn’t ready for it yet. I was glad, when I auditioned, that they said no.” (In fact, she’s so magnanimous toward the show that she has let Idol contestants such as Casey James, Katie Stevens, and Katelyn Epperly cover “Bubbly.”)
Luckily, this Malibu native didn’t need TV stardom to become famous. Her debut album, Coco, went double Platinum, selling over 2 million units in the United States. She’s a hit with the critics, as well, having won two Grammys, two BMI Pop Awards, and a Billboard Music Award. And she has another reason to smile these days: She’s engaged to singer Justin Young.
Besides, Colbie is far from the only music star who didn’t make the cut on Idol. On that same April 16 episode, for example, “Meant to Be” singer Bebe Rexha disclosed she was sent home after her pre-audition, too. “Nobody Love” songstress Tori Kelly got a golden ticket to Hollywood during Season 9, but didn’t make the cut for Top 24. “She Keeps Me Warm” singer Mary Lambert says she “didn’t go far at all” on the show — she was cut in the first round. Watch the video below to see more stars who succeeded after getting the axe on American Idol!