Background[edit | edit source]
Ben, the son of a preacher, comes from a large, musical family. His grandmother was one of the first singers on the Grand Ole Opry, and his mother was a singer-songwriter in Nashville. (Ben referred to her as the "Taylor Swift of the '70s" to Randy Jackson)
Ben's wife Courtney was the one who inspired him to try out for the show.
American Idol[edit | edit source]
Ben tried out for the show in Atlanta where the judges were impressed by his original song, "Arms of A Woman". He made it to Hollywood where he was impressive especially in the solo round where he sang "Stars" by Grace Potter and the Nocturnals. However, when trying to put together the top 30, the judges had a hard time choosing between Ben and fellow singer Neco Starr so they decided to let the public decide. The public picked Ben, who then wowed everyone with his performance of "Soulshine" by the Allman Brothers Band. That performance earned him a spot in the top 13.
For "This Is Me" week, Ben took on the Johnny Cash classic "Folsom Prison Blues", which earned him praise from the judges. The public agreed and voted him through to the next week.
For "Home" week, Ben sang "Turning Home" by David Nail. It earned him a chance to perform the next week.
For "Songs from The Movies" week, Ben took on "Bennie and The Jets" by Elton John, which had been previously covered by season 10 alum Haley Reinhart. The song, which has been featured in several films including the 1975 film Aloha, Bobby and Rose, unfortunately proved to be Ben's last performance as he was eliminated on March 13, 2014, finishing in 11th place.
Performances[edit | edit source]
|Episode||Theme||Song choice||Original artist||Result|
|Audition||Auditioner's Choice||"Arms of a Woman"||Amos Lee||Advanced|
|Hollywood Round, Part 1||A Capella||"Stars"||Grace Potter and the Nocturnals||Advanced|
|Hollywood Round, Part 2||Group Performance||"I Want It That Way" with Dexter Roberts & Casey Thrasher||Backstreet Boys||Advanced|
|Hollywood Round, Part 3||Solo||"Stars"||Grace Potter and the Nocturnals||Advanced|
|Top 31 (10 Men)||Personal Choice||"Soulshine"||The Allman Brothers Band||Safe|
|Top 13||This Is Me||"Folsom Prison Blues"||Johnny Cash||Safe|
|Top 12||Home||"Turning Home"||David Nail||Safe|
|Top 11||Songs from the Movies||"Bennie and the Jets"||Elton John||Eliminated|
Personal Life[edit | edit source]
Post Idol[edit | edit source]
Since his itme on the show, Ben has been focused on his music. He released his debut EP, Outlier, on December 14, 2014.
Discography[edit | edit source]
- Outilier (2014)
|Caleb Johnson ·Jena Irene ·Alex Preston ·Jessica Meuse ·Sam Woolf ·CJ Harris ·Dexter Roberts ·Malaya Watson ·Majesty Rose ·MK Nobilette ·Ben Briley ·Emily Piriz ·Kristen O'Connor|
|Bria Anai ·Spencer Lloyd ·Malcolm Allen ·George Lovett ·Briana Oakley ·Marrialle Sellars ·Emmanuel Zidor|
|Jordan Brisbane ·Andrina Brogden ·Kenzie Hall ·Ethan Harris ·Jillian Jensen ·Briston Maroney ·Brandy Neelly ·Casey Thrasher ·Maurice Townsend ·Austin Wolfe|