2003: 19-Year Old Miranda Lambert Competes On “Nashville Star”

Tassie TV/YouTube

In 2003, long before she shattered records and sold platinum albums, Miranda Lambert was a contestant on Nashville Star.

Nashville Star was a short-lived reality singing competition that aired from 2003 to 2008. With a format much like American Idol, the show focused on country singers and has been credited with launching the careers of Kacey Musgraves, Buddy Jewel, Chris Young and Miranda Lambert.

But, it was Lambert who went on to achieve the greatest success. Signs of Miranda’s star power were evident during her audition and subsequent performances on Nashville Star‘s inaugural season.

In an interview prior to one of her performances, Miranda told viewers that people don’t usually take her seriously because she hasn’t been through a lot of tough times in her life. But, she credited her parents’ job for giving her real-world insight.

“My parents are private investigators. They have so many stories of broken relationships and heartache, and I’ve heard it my whole life. So I understand how people feel,” then-19-years-old Lambert said.

She then performed a song she wrote with her dad called “Greyhound Bound For Nowhere.”

YouTube video

Week after week Lambert impressed the judging panel made up of country music historian Robert K. Oermann, record label executive Tracy Gershon, and singer/songwriter Charlie Robison, who was married to The Chicks’ Emily Erwin at the time.

Despite Miranda Lambert’s consistent crowd-pleasing performances, she ultimately placed third on Nashville Star. Buddy Jewel took home the title that year with John Arthur Martinez placing second.


But, judge and Sony label executive Tracy Gershon was so so impressed with Lambert that he convinced the label to sign the young artist. A year later, Miranda Lambert was celebrating the release of her debut album, Kerosene. The album debuted at the top of the Billboard Top Country Albums charts and gained platinum status, setting Miranda on a path of country music superstardom.

To date, Lambert has won 37 ACM Awards, 14 CMA Awards, 3 Grammy Awards and has sold more than 8 million albums! And to think…it all started on a little reality singing competition show twenty years ago.

Watch Miranda Lambert‘s performance of Tanya Tucker’s “Texas When I Die” in the video below.

Want to save this article?

Get this sent to your inbox, plus, get new articles & videos from us every week!

Sponsors / Partners

Interested in becoming a partner?

Contact us for more info

Unapologetically Country

Receive daily updates with the best country music videos, news, and more!