If you know the name Paul Jolley, chances are you were introduced to him by a little show named American Idol. If you don’t know the name Paul Jolley yet, it’s time we change that for you.
Upon chatting with Paul, he’s astonishingly humble, earnest and grateful for each opportunity that this crazy journey has afforded him. Although he’s already accomplished much, he’s got big dreams and even bigger talent.
Growing up in Tennessee, Paul was the kind of kid who always had a microphone in his hand. From organizing bedroom performances for his parents to appearing as a special guest performer during his school’s choir concerts in Kindergarten (he was too young to actually join the choir), it was immediately evident that he was bound for big things. As soon as he was able, he joined the choir, competed in talent shows and performed anywhere people would listen.
These performances included opening gigs for some legendary country artists, including Aaron Tippin, Billy Dean, Chely Wright and Lorrie Morgan. It was one of these opening gigs with Billy Dean that would change his life, as shortly after opening for the legend, he received a call from a radio station in Bowling Green, Kentucky, inviting him to come audition for American Idol.
Initially, Paul was hesitant, admitting that he auditioned three times previously and never made it past the first round. “I said I’d audition if I was off work,” Paul recalls. “It ended up that I was off work that day, which was weird because I never got off. I guess it was all just part of God’s plan getting me off work that day.”