“I was on spring break a few years ago when ‘The Voice’ was having auditions in Atlanta, Georgia. In my audition round I was the only guy and you get about thirty seconds to sing. I made it to the next round that was at a studio, and then made it to the next cut.
They had four audition cities and narrowed it from about 10,000 to 200 people. Then you don’t know if you made it to the show for a few months.
I made it through those rounds with the producers, but I got a letter saying I wasn’t “interesting” enough for the show’s ratings so I didn’t get to the show. But it gave me a lot of confidence because I was good enough voice wise to make it through all those producer auditions.”
That’s too funny, but yeah, it happened…
Not “interesting” enough
It’s why I think these reality singing shows are such garbage these days.
Obviously, Blake Shelton is a judge on The Voice, and props to him for usually going after the country talent, and helping them after the show ends. However, he was recently asked in a radio interview about that Luke Combs rejection, and he didn’t mince words…
“He told me that story…there’s no way around it, it’s embarrassing. Let’s just face it.
Luke told me that he kept his rejection letter, his letter saying we’re not gonna put you on the show. He said he put that in his dorm room in college and he hung it on the wall to push him on, something to fight for.
I don’t know if he still has that letter or not, but if he does … I think he should frame it and put it next to his first triple-platinum album that he has.”
Here’s Luke talking about the rejection, and Blake.
A nice reminder to keep fighting, hustling, and grinding.
But aside from his insane trajectory in country music over a relatively short time span, which includes an unprecedented 13 straight #1 hits, Luke is a big advocate for independent artists and groups beyond the mainstream view.
Right now, he’s really into Virginia-based band 49 Winchester as much as we are, and even wore their shirt in a recent Instagram post for all of his 4.3 million followers to see ahead of CMA Fest:
In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, Luke sat down to talk about the new album, and 49 Winchester frontman Isaac Gibson even commented on how much it means for their band to get public recognition from Luke:
“When you’re an up-and-coming band, there’s always the hope, in the back of your mind, that the heavy hitters are taking note of the things you are doing.
It’s an honor to have a guy like Luke supporting what 49 is doing.”
Luke has also touted the fantastic musical stylings of Texas band Wilder Blue in the past, and has even worked with bluegrass phenomenon Billy Strings.
The pair teamed up on a surprise bluegrass collaboration back in 2021, “The Great Divide”, and have struck up a seemingly unlikely friendship.
Luke, who’s currently the biggest thing in country, and Billy, who’s burst onto the bluegrass scene and received high praise from megastars like Post Malone, first met after Luke invited Billy to Key West, Florida for a writer’s retreat:
“My manager was like this dude Luke Combs wants to hang. I’m like, ‘He’s a big country star, fuck it, let’s go chill with him and see what he’s all about.”
Not to overstate the obvious, but he was beyond impressed by Luke’s voice and was amazed at his vocal ability and true talent:
“You sit in a room with him and sing? Oh my god. It’s like, ‘Oh shit, I’m in the room with a SINGER.’”
And beyond his raw natural talent, Billy is just as impressed by Luke’s work ethic and drive to be successful in the music industry:
“I’ve been out to Luke’s house and I’ve seen him on a regular Wednesday afternoon. He’s playing a video game for a sec and then it’s like, ‘Boom, he does an interview. What’s next? Podcast? Boom, does the podcast. What’s next?’
It’s like, ‘Bro, it’s fucking Wednesday. And you’re checking all this shit off the list.’ He don’t stop.”
I think it’s about time we get another new track from these two sometime soon…
And if you haven’t checked out “The Great Divide” yet, allow me to bless your ears: