Vancouver singer hopes dream comes true on ‘Idol’

Britnee Kellogg goes from Portland auditions to TV show’s Hollywood round

By Ashley Swanson, Columbian features news coordinator

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Britnee Kellogg’s ‘American Idol’ audition.

Vancouver singer Britnee Kellogg won a ticket to Hollywood Wednesday night in the Portland audition round for TV’s “American Idol.”

“It was pretty surreal, seeing these giant celebrities. Being in front of them is pretty crazy,” said Kellogg, though she’s no stranger to performing on the big stage. “I’ve been in front of cameras all my life, and it gives me more idea what it’s like to deal with feedback,” said the 27-year-old.

Kellogg began singing at the age of 5 and spent 10 years participating in pageants, including winning first runner-up for talent at the Miss Teen America pageant at age 15. The single mother of two won the “Sing Like Taylor Swift” contest back in 2010, and flew to Nashville to meet the country music superstar.

Kellogg has been performing with the Vancouver band 5 Guys Named Moe for six years, singing in gigs around the metro area. “They’re like my family,” she said, “They’ve been loving it (the “Idol” audition).”

Along with her bandmates, Kellogg’s family was in attendance to support the singer during the auditions, which attracted the attention of Ryan Seacrest and the television producers, especially the antics of her two sons, Caiden, 3 and Hudson, 2. “My boys were really hamming it up for the cameras,” she said. “I went into the auditions with no expectations. I’ve been told no a lot in my career.”

During the audition round, Kellogg impressed the judges -- Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez and Randy Jackson -- with the song “You’re No Good” made famous by one of her favorite artists, Linda Ronstadt. “The song definitely had some feeling,” said Kellogg. And the judges seemed to agree. It was Lopez’s comments that struck Kellogg the most, when she asked how Lopez balanced a musician’s life with family. “I think we connected on a different level, because we’re both single moms.”

Kellogg heeded the advice as the television show moves to Hollywood round week next week, though the filming is already complete. “It was a difficult process to be away from my sons. It’s a big deal for me being a single mom, since they’re my first priority, and they’re definitely momma’s boys.”

After seeing last night’s episode,

Kellogg was surprised with how the television producers portrayed her ex-husband. “I want people to know that he’s an incredible dad. He’s very present in their lives,” she said of her ex-husband. It’s that support she knows many single mothers don’t have.

Though Kellogg couldn’t say how far she made it in the Hollywood round because of contractual reasons, the singer hopes it’s one more step towards her musical goal. “My biggest dream is to be on the CMAs accepting an award,” she said, adding love of country music has inspired her own career.

Kellogg’s progress can be followed in the Hollywood round of “American Idol,” which airs in three parts, starting at 8 p.m. Feb. 9 on Fox.