The journal of a Kentucky culture vulture
Central Kentucky has more of a rooting interest in the Hollywood round of American Idol as Winchester’s Lauren Mink, a Georgetown College alum, is getting a second chance at the competition. Mink advanced to Hollywood last year but did not make it to the live competition.
She will be joined in Hollywood by Kelly Casey of Nicholasville, who advanced out of the Baton Rouge auditions.
Mink auditioned in Charlotte, which was shown Wednesday night, and impressed a mostly new slate of judges including Keith Urban, Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey.
“The judges were so different this year,” Mink says in a video on the Idol website. “I was really excited there was Keith Urban, who is a country person, which is awesome. They never had a country judge before. But I was shocked that Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey liked me so much. They’re probably the ones that were most complimentary to me.”
According to her Facebook page, Mink started singing at age 9 and has performed around Central Kentucky and recorded two albums, an inspirational/contemporary Christian album and a collection of country originals.
Like Casey, Mink counts fellow country singer Carrie Underwood among her favorite Idol winners, though she’s also a fan of original winner Kelly Clarkson.
And like pretty much everyone else in the competition, Mink thinks she would be an ideal Season 12 winner.
“I think I’m a good singer,” Mink says on her video. “It’s taken me a long time to say that I’m a good singer. It’s taken a lot of people telling me I’m a good singer. I don’t feel like I’m cocky about it. I feel like I’m just very confident in who I am as an artist, and I think that I’m also a good role model.”
Also like Casey, Mink was not seen in the episode covering the audition from which she advanced. But Hollywood is coming.
Note: The original posting of this story misidentified Mink as a Georgetown College student. She is an alum.
Nicholasville farm girl Kelly Casey says she auditioned for American Idol so friends and family would stop bugging her to audition. It seems like they had the right idea, because she’s going to Hollywood.
“I’ve always kind of been told that I should audition, and I never have in the past,” Casey says in a video on the Idol website. “This is my first time, so I was just kind of trying to get people off of my back about doing it and, wow, I got a golden ticket. It’s incredible.”
Casey advanced out of the Baton Rouge auditions, which were broadcast Thursday night on Fox. She was not seen on the episode, and there are several more audition cities to be shown before Hollywood episodes next month, which will be the next chance to see Casey compete.
As a two-time Miss Kentucky contestant, Casey is no stranger to competition, and she has maintained an active singing career in Central Kentucky. In the Idol video, she says her rural upbringing will be a key to her success on the show.
She says, “I think I’m the next American Idol because growing up in a rural area and living on a farm in Kentucky has taught me a great work ethic, which I can convert into music, because no matter how cold it is outside or what’s going on, if it’s Christmas, the animals still have to be taken care of.”
Casey’s Facebook fan page lists her as a country and Christian musician with favorites and influences including Shania Twain and Martina McBride. Her favorite Idol contestant is fairly easy to guess: Carrie Underwood.
““She’s extremely successful, and it’s the same genre of music that I have grown up listening to,” Casey says. “I love country music.”
About Rich Copley & Copious Notes
Raised by opera-loving parents in a rock ’n’ roll world, Rich Copley has parlayed his broad interests into his career writing about arts and entertainment. Since 1998, he has covered performing arts, film and faith-based popular culture for the Lexington Herald-Leader, the daily newspaper in Lexington, Ky. MORE | E-mail Rich