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Tori Kelly: Seveteen Magazine's February 2016's Leading Lady

Posted on January 04, 2016

The fact that Simon Cowell once called Tori Kelly‘s voice annoying seriously blows our mind.

But we knew one way or another, this gorgeous voice was destined for fame!


Cover Girl Alert: Tori Kelly is on leading lady of Seveteen Magazine’s February issue — out January 5th, and we guarantee you’re going to want to grab this one.

Not only does Tori open up about the moment Simon deemed her voice annoying, but she spills on the time her manager called her boring, and exactly what her relationship status is with Ed Sheeran.

“First, let’s get those Ed rumors out of the way, since the sheer musical possibilities of a Tori/Ed romance are too mind-blowing to fathom.

“I knew that was coming, but no,” she said. “Working with him was a really cool experience because I was a fan and I didn’t know how it would go, but right away he made it super-chill. Ever since then, he’s been someone I consider a friend and even a mentor.”

Even though she has a totally ~fire~ track with Ed Sheeran out now (“I Was Made for Loving You”), she was once cut from American Idol. Back when she was 16, judge Simon Cowell called her voice “almost annoying.” Tori was eliminated from season nine.

“Deep down, I knew I was good, and I knew I could do it,” she said. “I needed to get knocked down and to build up a thick skin. Who knows what I would have been singing about otherwise? You have to go through things in order to inspire others with your story.”


Even after she found success with a record deal, her manager had some harsh words about her career.

“He told me, ‘People are saying you are vanilla and that you have nothing to say,'” she recalled. “I was like, Whoa. I remembered record-label guys telling me I was really reserved when I was younger. Like, ‘Wake up, you should be bubbly and happy!’ And I was thinking, But this is my personality; I’m just chilling. So I went right back to being that little girl who was just so freaked out. I acted as if I didn’t care, but I went home that night and just poured all the feelings that I was holding back into my music. That’s how ‘Unbreakable Smile’ came to be.” —

Thanks to Seventeen, for picking the gorgeous and talented Tori as your cover girl and thus, our valentine for February!