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Kellie Pickler
Pickler performing in July 2013
Background information
Birth name Kellie Dawn Pickler
Born June 28, 1986 (1986-06-28) (age 34)
Albemarle, North Carolina, United States
Genres Country pop, neotraditional
Occupation(s) Singer, songwriter
Years active 2005–present
Labels BNA, 19 Recordings
Black River Entertainment

Kellie Dawn Pickler (born June 28, 1986) is an American country music artist, actress and television personality.

Pickler gained fame as a contestant on the fifth season of American Idol and finished in sixth place. In 2006, she signed to 19 Recordings and BNA Records as a recording artist. Her debut album, Small Town Girl, was released later that year and has sold over 900,000 copies. The album, which was certified gold by the RIAA, produced three singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts: "Red High Heels" at #15, "I Wonder" at #14, and "Things That Never Cross a Man's Mind" at #16.

Pickler released her self-titled second album in 2008 that produced four singles: "Don't You Know You're Beautiful" at #21, "Best Days of Your Life" at #9 (which she co-wrote with Taylor Swift), "Didn't You Know How Much I Loved You" at #14, and "Makin' Me Fall in Love Again" at #30.

In 2012, Pickler was ranked as the 14th best American Idol alumna. In October 2012, she parted ways with her former record label and signed with Black River Entertainment.

On May 21, 2013, Pickler and her partner, Derek Hough, were declared the winners of the 16th season of Dancing with the Stars. In 2016, she was inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame.

Since 2017, she co-hosts the nationally syndicated daytime TV talk show Pickler & Ben with comedian Ben Aaron.

Early life

Courthouse Square Park, Albemarle, North Carolina
A banner proclaims Albemarle as "Home of Kellie Pickler"

Kellie Pickler was born at Stanly Memorial Hospital in Albemarle, North Carolina. Pickler says the major influences in her life are her grandfather, Clyde Raymond Pickler, Sr., a former electrician, and grandmother, Faye Pickler. Pickler graduated in 2004 from North Stanly High School in New London, North Carolina. She was a cheerleader and beauty queen. She sang "On the Side of Angels" by LeAnn Rimes at her high school graduation.

She worked as a carhop at a Sonic Drive-In franchise, and in 2005, she made an appearance on WSOC-TV's Gimme the Mike! Charlotte contest. She finished in second place. She participated in the Miss America circuit and won the "Miss Stanly County" pageant at age 17 and subsequently competed for Miss North Carolina 2004.

Personal life

Kyle Jacobs and Kellie Pickler listen to the band Interstate 10 160204-D-PB383-482
Kyle Jacobs and Kellie Pickler 2016

On February 26, 2007, she met her personal "idol" and strongest influence, Dolly Parton. The surprise was arranged by Sony BMG Nashville chairman Joe Galante.

In 2007, Pickler was in a relationship with Nashville Predators player Jordin Tootoo and visited his family in Nunavut. Later that year, the two broke up.

Pickler's best friend is Summer Miller, who Pickler met when they were teen pageant hopefuls, she is close friends with Carrie Underwood; Taylor Swift, who co-wrote her second single "Best Days of Your Life"; and her American Idol roommate, Katharine McPhee.

25 Dec. 2016 CJCS USO Holiday Tour PT. 2 161225-D-PB383-142 (31061877924)
Kellie Pickler performed for deployed service members at bases across Iraq, December 2016

After two and a half years of dating, Pickler became engaged to songwriter Kyle Jacobs on June 15, 2010. On January 1, 2011, she and Jacobs eloped and married in a "small, intimate ceremony on a private island in the Caribbean".

On September 4, 2012, Pickler shaved her head on Good Morning America in support of her friend, Summer Holt Miller, who started chemotherapy after breast surgery.

In 2015, it was announced that Pickler and Jacobs would star in a 13-episode reality show for CMT entitled I Love Kellie Pickler. The show premiered on November 5, 2015.


  • Small Town Girl 2006
  • Kellie Pickler 2008
  • 100 Proof 2012
  • The Woman I Am 2013

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