Season 5 of ‘American Idol’ was filled with incredible contestants, and several went on to have amazing careers, like Chris Daughtry! The singer spoke to HollywoodLife about the friendships he still has with his fellow contestants!
Is being an alum of American Idol like being an alum of your high school? Actually, yes, according to Chris Daughtry! “I feel like I would go to a reunion of that before my high school reunion,” the Daughtry frontman told HollywoodLife.com in a podcast interview. “I feel like I’ve had more contact with that group of people in the last 20 years that I ever did with people I went to high school with. It was just the best time, with the best people. We all got along great and it was all fun.” Recall, Chris was on the show alongside Kellie Pickler, Elliott Yamin, Ace Young, Mandisa, Katherine McPhee and Taylor Hicks. He was eliminated from the Top 4 and Taylor Hicks went on to (controversially) win the season.
After working a series of jobs to make ends meat while also trying to launch a singing career, Chris’s wife gave him the idea to audition for American Idol. “At that time, American Idol was so different. I remember watching them when the contestants were singing to tracks and there was no band on stage, and it was all bubble-gum pop songs or old standards,” Chris explained. “It was like ‘No way in hell am I gonna do this.'” But, that all changed when acts like Carrie Underwood, Bo Bice and Constantine Maroulis changed the game in the next season. “It was more like “This is not what I do, but at the same time it’s not what I’m used to seeing on this show, which means maybe there is room for someone like myself.’ And so I went out and I auditioned.”
At the time, Chris was working at a car dealership and his co-workers raised money for him to travel and audition in Denver, Colorado after they cancelled the audition city closest to him. It ended up being for the best, because Chris was a stand-out in Denver, when he may not have been had he gone to the Greenboro audition, where the judges picked up Bucky Covington and Kellie Pickler. “Man, I could have easily just somehow been in front of a different producer that day that it wouldn’t have made it through,” Chris said. “Ot was the right place, right time.” Love that! You can listen to our full interview on the HollywoodLife podcast!