Feb 20, 2024 - Music

Charlottean and former NFL player receives "American Idol" golden ticket

Blake Proehl (left) and his grandma on the set of "American Idol."

Blake Proehl on "American Idol" next to his grandmother. Photo: Eric McCandless/Courtesy of Disney

Blake Proehl has competed most of his life on the football field. Now he's vying for a chance to catapult his singing career on "American Idol."

What's happening: The Charlottean received a golden ticket to compete on season 22 of the show in Hollywood. His performance of "In Case You Didn't Know" by Brett Young impressed judges and music superstars Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie on Sunday night's premiere of the show.

  • Proehl performed with his grandmother, who he calls Nana, by his side, recreating a similar moment to when he recorded singing "In Case You Didn't Know" to her.
  • The original video went viral.

What he's saying: "I really didn't believe in myself at all music-wise, and she is the reason why I have any confidence at all to be in this room," Proehl said on the show.

Why it matters: Charlotte is in its reality show era, with contestants on shows like "Love is Blind," "The Bachelor," "Twin Love," "Farmer Wants a Wife," "Survivor" and "Next Level Chef."

  • Season six of "Love is Blind" is even set in Charlotte.

Context: Proehl played for the Minnesota Vikings before suffering a knee injury that sidelined his NFL dreams. He used music as an outlet during his recovery process, and has since released multiple songs, including his latest single, "Chapters."

  • Proehl attended East Carolina and Providence High.
  • His dad, Ricky Proehl, played for 17 years in the NFL, including three with the Panthers. Blake's brother, Austin Proehl, also played professionally after his collegiate career for the North Carolina Tar Heels.
Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images
Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Details: "American Idol" airs Sunday nights at 8pm on ABC. You can also stream it on Hulu.

What we're watching: Proehl's progress on "American Idol," of course, and any new music from the Charlotte native. He teased the possibility of a new song on his Instagram story Monday morning.

Blake Proehl performing on "American Idol" next to his Nana.
Blake Proehl performing on "American Idol" next to his grandmother. Photo: Eric McCandless/Courtesy of Disney

Of note: Proehl did not respond immediately to Axios' request for an interview.

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