Tori Kelly has been in the spotlight now for nearly a decade. Tori is on the long list of American Idol singers who found success despite not making it very far in the competition and a swipe from Simon Cowell.

As a teenager, she aspired to become a professional singer, but now Tori Kelly‘s dreams have come true as she’s found fame as a songwriter and her work.

Despite being eliminated halfway through season nine of American Idol, she found success by continuing to upload covers on social media, which she still does until this day.

One BET Award, a Billboard Music Award, a YouTube Music Award, two Grammys, and millions of followers later, the singer has a whopping net worth of $3 million.

A ‘successful’ loser

At the age of 16, Tori auditioned for series nine of America Idol. Although she didn’t make it to the semifinals, her talented voice took her to the top 24 contestants.

Following her journey in the competition, she continued to post covers on her YouTube channel. Eventually, Tori independently released an EP, titled Handmade Songs by Tori Kelly.

A year later, the teenager was discovered by Scooter Braun, and he signed her under Capital Records.

Her success and attention from the internet earned her a nomination for Best New Artist at the 2016 Grammys. Three years later, the 29-year-old won another Grammys in the categories Best Gospel Album. She was also nominated for Best Gospel Song for her second studio album, Hiding Place.

Her response to Simon Cowell calling her ‘annoying’

Simon Cowell is known for his very tough judging remarks and at some point has been every contestant’s nightmare. Though Kelly did get the three ‘yes’ responses from Randy Jackson, Kara DioGuardi, and even guest judge Victoria Beckham, the 62-year-old Briton did not go easy on her.

Despite making it to the next round, Simon described her voice to be “downright annoying”. His words stuck with her throughout her time in the competition.

In an interview on the Kelly Clarkson’s talk show, she described it to be “the most amazing experience”. She said not have any “hard feelings” about Simon.

“I don’t regret anything and I think Simon is cool. No hard feelings. I actually should thank him because it all happened for a reason,” she explained.

Metro reported that Simon has yet to apologize to her for the small remark.

Tori Kelly’s steady career

After nearly a decade in the spotlight, Tori has had quite a successful career. Her latest album A Tori Kelly Christmas was released in 2020 and since then, the young singer returned to television. She participated in the fourth season of The Masked Singer, reaching the semifinals.

In 2021, Kelly recorded a version of Waving Through A Window for the soundtrack of the 2021 film adaptation of Dear Evan Hansen. Later that year, she published her first book, The Curly Girl Blues, and reprised her role as Meena for the animated musical comedy Sing 2.

Last year, Tori returned to American Idol as a special guest by duetting other contestants. It was also during the Top 24 selection, the same time she got eliminated in her own season.

As fans wait for the singer to release her new album, Tori has been posting short videos where she covers popular songs from different artists she follows. On April 2022, the singer joined Pink Sweats at the Coachella Valley Festival.

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Ashley Bautista
Ashley Bautista

Ashley is a journalism graduate from Kingston University, currently writing for HITC, Reality Titbit and The Focus. She loves to travel and learn new languages and cultures. She also has an interest in celebrity news and the entertainment world. When she’s not writing, she’s on social media, watching K-dramas or shopping.

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