Lauren Alaina (born Lauren Alaina Kristine Suddeth; November 8, 1994) is an American singer, songwriter, and actress from Rossville, Georgia. She was the runner-up on the tenth season of American Idol. Her debut studio album, Wildflower was released on October 11, 2011. Her second album, Road Less Traveled was released January 27, 2017. Alaina later achieved her first number one on the Country Airplay chart with the album's title track. Her second number one came later that year when she simultaneously topped five Billboard charts with her friend and former classmate Kane Brown on their duet "What Ifs".
Alaina started to sing at the age of three. Her first public performances followed with a kids choir and an annual vacation spot that offered karaoke. She sang in church, restaurants, family holiday gatherings and anywhere within a 30-mile radius of where she lived.[not in citation given]
At age eight, Alaina entered the talent competition of the Southern Stars Pageant and won. The next year she was selected to perform on the Kids talent stage at Chattanooga's Riverbend Festival. She performed on that stage annually until age twelve, when she won the competition that allowed her to perform on the festival's big stage. She traveled to Orlando, Florida when she was ten to compete in the American Model and Talent Competition. She won the event, beating out 1,500 kids. Alaina sang with the Georgia Country Gospel Music Association's children's group. At age twelve, Alaina made her first of many trips to Nashville. She performed at local bars on Broadway, such as Tootsie's. In 2009, Alaina was the first winner of the WinniSTAR youth talent contest at Lake Winnepesaukah amusement park. In addition to performing, Alaina wrote several songs including "Leaving" and "Set Me Free".
Alaina was inspired to sing by her cousin, Holly Witherow, who was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Prior to Idol, Alaina worked at CiCi's Pizza. She attended Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School in Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia, where she was a cheerleader.
Alaina auditioned for the tenth season of American Idol in Nashville, Tennessee. From early on, Alaina was a judge favorite. After her audition, Idol judge Steven Tyler stated, "We found the one." May 14, 2011 was proclaimed "Lauren Alaina Day" in her hometown of Rossville, Georgia. During the season finale, Alaina sang "Before He Cheats" with her idol, Carrie Underwood. On May 25, 2011, Alaina was declared the runner-up.
|Episode||Theme||Song choice||Original artist||Order #||Result|
||Solo "Like We Never Loved at All"||Faith Hill||N/A||Advanced|
|Duet "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing" with Steven Tyler||Aerosmith|
|Hollywood Round, Part 1||First Solo||"Unchained Melody"||Todd Duncan||N/A||Advanced|
|Hollywood Round, Part 2||Group Performance||"Some Kind of Wonderful"||Soul Brothers Six||N/A||Advanced|
|Hollywood Round, Part 3||Second Solo||"I Don't Want to Miss a Thing"||Aerosmith||N/A||Advanced|
|Las Vegas Round||Songs of The Beatles
|"Hello, Goodbye"||The Beatles||N/A||Advanced|
|Hollywood Round Final||Final Solo||"Unchained Melody"||Todd Duncan||N/A||Advanced|
|Top 24 (12 Women)||Personal Choice||"Turn On the Radio"||Reba McEntire||11||Advanced|
|Top 13||Your Personal Idol||"Any Man of Mine"||Shania Twain||1||Safe|
|Top 12||Year You Were Born||"I'm the Only One"||Melissa Etheridge||11||Safe|
|Top 11||Motown||"You Keep Me Hangin' On"||The Supremes||4||Safe|
|Top 111||Elton John||"Candle in the Wind"||Elton John||6||Safe|
|Top 9||Rock & Roll Hall of Fame||"(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman"||Aretha Franklin||4||Safe|
|Top 8||Songs from the Movies||"The Climb" - Hannah Montana: The Movie||Miley Cyrus||2||Safe|
|Top 7||Songs from the 21st Century||"Born to Fly"||Sara Evans||7||Safe|
|Top 6||Carole King||Solo "Where You Lead"||Carole King||2||Safe|
|Duet "Up on the Roof" with Scotty McCreery||The Drifters||6|
|Top 5||Songs from Now and Then||"Flat on the Floor"||Katrina Elam||3||Bottom 22|
|"Unchained Melody"||Todd Duncan||8|
|Top 4||Inspirational Songs||"Anyway"||Martina McBride||4||Safe|
|Leiber & Stoller Songbook||"Trouble"||Elvis Presley||7|
|Top 3||Contestant's Choice||"Wild One"||Zaca Creek||2||Safe|
|Jimmy Iovine's Choice||"If I Die Young"||The Band Perry||5|
|Judges' Choice||"I Hope You Dance"||Lee Ann Womack||8|
|Finale||Favorite Idol Performance||"Flat on the Floor"||Katrina Elam||2||Runner-up|
|Carrie Underwood's Choice||"Maybe It Was Memphis"||Pam Tillis||4|
|Coronation Song||"Like My Mother Does"||Kristy Lee Cook||6|
Following Idol, Alaina was signed to Interscope Records, Mercury Nashville and 19 Recordings. Alaina released her single "Like My Mother Does". The song entered the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart at forty-nine and the Hot 100 chart at twenty and sold 121,000 copies in its first week. "Like My Mother Does" peaked at thirty-six on the Hot Country Songs chart.
Following the conclusion of Season 10, Alaina appeared and performed on several talk shows such as The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,Live with Regis and Kelly and The Today Show. On June 8, 2011, Alaina and McCreery presented at the CMT Music Awards. In addition, Alaina made her Grand Ole Opry debut on June 10. She performed with Martina McBride at LP Field during the CMA Music Festival. The following summer, Alaina toured with the American Idols LIVE! Tour 2011, which began in West Valley City, Utah on July 6, 2011 and ended in Manila, Philippines on September 21, 2011.
On October 11, 2011, Alaina released her debut album Wildflower, which debuted at number five on the US Billboard 200 chart and sold 69,000 copies the first week. The single "Georgia Peaches" was released to country radio on October 24. It reached twenty-eight on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart.
To promote her album, Alaina made numerous television and radio appearances. She performed her single "Georgia Peaches" on Good Morning America, Live with Regis and Kelly and The Ellen DeGeneres Show. On October 22, 2011, Alaina performed at Opry Goes Pink, a benefit concert at the Grand Ole Opry for Women for the Cure. On November 10, 2011, Alaina performed "My Grown Up Christmas List" on CMA Country Christmas. In addition, Alaina performed for Barack Obama and Michelle Obama in the PBS special In Performance at the White House on November 21. She sang the National Anthem at the Thanksgiving Day game between the Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers. On New Year's Eve, Alaina performed her single "Georgia Peaches" on American Country New Year's Eve Live.
Alaina served as an opening act for Jason Aldean's My Kinda Party Tour from January 20, 2012 to May 19, 2012. In addition to the My Kinda Party Tour, Alaina opened for Sugarland's In the Hands of the Fans Tour for a number of selected dates, beginning on April 5, 2012 and concluding on September 1, 2012. On March 8, 2012, Alaina performed "Georgia Peaches" on the eleventh season of American Idol. On March 26, 2012, Alaina performed her single "Georgia Peaches" on The Today Show. On June 16, 2012, Alaina headlined the final show of Riverbend, a music festival in her hometown of Chattanooga, Tennessee.
In July 2012, "Eighteen Inches" became Alaina's third single off her album, Wildflower. The single was sent to country radio on July 16. "Eighteen Inches" hit thirty-seven on the Billboard Hot Country Songs list. In support of the song, Alaina embarked on an 18-city tour. Proceeds from each show benefited various local charities, including the Special Olympics. The Inch-By-Inch tour kicked off on September 21, 2012, and wrapped up November 12, 2012.
In January 2013, Alaina started recording her second album. On May 7, 2013, Alaina released the single "Barefoot and Buckwild", which charted at thirty-four on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. She performed the song on the twelfth season of American Idol on May 9, 2013. In May 2013, Alaina also released a track titled "Antarctica: One World, One Family". The track serves as the theme song for the SeaWorld attraction Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin. On December 10, 2013, Alaina released her cover of "My Grown Up Christmas List". On September 18, 2015, Alaina released the single "Next Boyfriend". "Next Boyfriend" was added to radio stations on September 28. It reached thirty-nine on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. A EP followed on October 2, 2015. A track on the EP, "History" was used for ESPN College Football coverage.
Alaina released the single "Road Less Traveled", which she co-wrote with Meghan Trainor and Jesse Frasure, on July 11, 2016. Alaina performed the track on The Today Show on September 8, 2016 and on Harry on February 7, 2017. In April 2017, "Road Less Traveled" reached number one on the Billboard Country Airplay chart.
On January 27, 2017, Alaina released her second album Road Less Traveled. Tracks for Alaina's album include "Same Day Different Bottle", "Doin' Fine", "My Kinda People", "Pretty", "Crashin' the Boys Club" and "Queen of Hearts", as well as four tracks from her self-titled EP. Alaina describes Road Less Traveled as "very different" from her debut album. In addition, self acceptance and love is a big theme on the album. "We are all different and that's what makes us all beautiful. The album will reflect that further. It will have some fun songs and sad songs - a little bit of what my life has been like over the past few years", Alaina says. Alaina performed "Doin' Fine" on Good Morning America on January 31, 2017.
In February and March 2017, Alaina toured with Martina McBride on her Love Unleashed Tour. Throughout June and July 2017, Alaina appeared on Luke Bryan's Huntin', Fishin' and Lovin' Every Day Tour for a number of selected dates. In May 2017, Alaina contributed guest vocals to the song "Are You Happy Now" from Rascal Flatts' tenth studio album, Back to Us.
Alaina's third single from Road Less Traveled, "Doin' Fine", was released May 22, 2017. Alaina became the only female to top both country charts in 2017 after "Road Less Traveled" topped the Country Airplay chart and "What Ifs" topped the Hot Country chart. This also made her one of the only three women to top either country chart in 2017.
Alaina performed "Doin' Fine" and "What Ifs" at the 2018 ACM Awards in which she won New Female Vocalist of the Year. At the 2018 CMT Music Awards, Alaina and Brown won the award for "Best Collaborative Video" for "What Ifs" and were among the top five vote getters for "Video of the Year" for the same song.
In September and October 2016, Alaina filmed her very first movie The Road Less Traveled, which took place in Knoxville, Tennessee. The film was released on June 6, 2017. It then premiered on CMT on November 10, 2017.
Alaina's parents divorced in 2013. Her father was an alcoholic but has been sober since October 2013. Both her parents remarried.
Throughout her teen years, Alaina struggled with bulimia. "I had an eating disorder for like four years, and I was just lost," she says of her battle with bulimia. ... I found myself in these last few years, through music and family and good people around me."
She has been dating Alexander Hopkins since 2012.
|Title||Details||Peak chart positions||Sales|
|Road Less Traveled||
|"--" denotes a recording that failed to chart.|
|American Idol Season 10
Highlights: Lauren Alaina
|"--" denotes a recording that did not chart.|
|Year||Single||Peak chart positions||Sales||Album|
|US Country Airplay
|2011||"Like My Mother Does"||36||20||48||50||
|2013||"Barefoot and Buckwild"||34||56||--||--||--||
||Road Less Traveled|
|2016||"Road Less Traveled"||8||1||67||3||--||
|"--" denotes a recording that did not chart.|
|Year||Award||Category||Nominee / Work||Result||Ref|
|2012||CMT Music Awards||USA Breakthrough Video of the Year||"Georgia Peaches"||Nominated|||
|Teen Choice Awards 2012||Choice Female Country Artist||Herself||Nominated|||
|Choice TV: Female Reality Star (American Idol)||Nominated|
|Inspirational Country Music Awards||Inspirational video||"Like My Mother Does"||Nominated|||
|American Country Awards||New Artist of the Year||Herself||Won|||
|2017||ACM Awards||New Female Vocalist of the Year||Nominated|||
|Radio Disney Music Awards||Country Best New Artist||Nominated|||
|CMT Music Awards||Breakthrough Video of the Year||"Road Less Traveled"||Won|||
|Female Video of the Year||Nominated|
|Music Row Awards||Breakthrough Artist Writer of the Year||Herself||Won|||
|CMA Awards||New Artist of the Year||Herself||Nominated|||
|2018||ACM Awards||New Female Vocalist of the Year||Won|||
|Vocal Event of the Year||"What Ifs" with (Kane Brown)||Nominated|
|Billboard Music Award||Top Country Song||Nominated|||
|CMT Music Awards||Video of the Year||Nominated|||
|Collaborative Video of the Year||Won|
|Female Video of the Year||"Doin' Fine"||Nominated|
|Golden Mic Awards||Best Club Act||Herself||Nominated|||