Who Is Jay Allen? Five Things To Know About The Season 22 ‘The Voice’ Contestant

Jay Allen is set to appear as a contestant on season 22 of The Voice, an opportunity he has been working toward…

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Madeleine O’Connell

| Posted on

September 19, 2022

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Jay Allen; Photo via Facebook

Jay Allen is set to appear as a contestant on season 22 of The Voice, an opportunity he has been working toward for years. 

He first announced the news in early September, just a few weeks ahead of the show’s premiere date, Monday (Sept. 19). In a recent post on social media, he shared a sneak peek of his audition with a caption that read, “I’ve been waiting for this for a long time.”

He went from spending all his time in a small town in Iowa, working on his family farm to living in Nashville and becoming a viral sensation.

Allen made the move to Music City in 2013, secured a publishing deal, and teamed with SONY/ATV. His fanbase grew exponentially in 2018 when a fan shared a video of him singing his ballad that was inspired by his mom, Sherry Rich, and her battle with Alzheimer’s. He titled the powerful song, “Blank Stares.” This performance warmed the hearts of so many people because it features his mom by his side. After it was posted on Facebook, it garnered over 500 million views.

It was this weekend 2 years ago that I got a call I’ll never forget. My band and I were driving to a show on the east coast when my little sister had to break the news that mom wasn’t going to make it through the night. My guys pulled the van over and wrapped their arms around me while I cried and said my goodbyes. I’ll forever be impacted by that moment, but that moment is also what keeps me going. When I have moments of doubt. When I think my music isn’t being heard. When I want to throw in the towel…I don’t. Because I have an angel in heaven cheering me on. And all that matters to me is that I make her proud. To my family, friends, team, and fans…thanks for standing by me. #ENDALZ

Posted by JAY ALLEN on Saturday, February 20, 2021

The artist on the rise was already living in Nashville at the time when his father called to say things had gotten worse with his mom’s health. His parents drove 11 hours from Iowa to see him although it was a difficult time for Allen, it also reminded him of the power that music can have. The moment he witnessed music bring light back into his mom’s eyes, he was inspired to write “Blank Stares.” Unfortunately, his mom has since passed away.

“When she lost her battle, mine began…” he shared on Instagram. 

As Jay Allen continues to honor his mom’s life and his journey on The Voice begins, here are five facts about the Iowa native.

Allen’s Love For Music Stems From His Upbringing

Country music is a big part of his life, but it’s not the only genre that holds a special place in his heart. His mom held a great love for country music. Allen remembers blasting country radio in the car and singing along with her on the way home from school. He gained an appreciation for rock ‘n’ roll from his dad who introduced him to some legends of the genre including AC/DC, Metallica, and Aerosmith. Since he spent a lot of time in church, Allen has also carried the music he heard in that setting with him into his present career.

He Works Closely With The Alzheimer’s Association

After losing his mom to Alzheimer’s, Allen has continued to be an advocate for the Alzheimer’s Association and has helped raise over $50 million in an effort to fight the disease. In 2019, he and his family were honored with the “Caregiver Award during the 32nd annual Alzheimer’s Association Chicago Rita Hayworth Gala.

Fellow Country Artist, Kylie Morgan Is Allen’s fiancé

Allen and Kylie Morgan met during a writing session years ago and instantly clicked. He took the next step when he popped the question in 2021 on their sixth anniversary of dating and she happily said yes. The public engagement took place in the midst of their set on the Whiskey Jam stage, a place they had both been to together many times before. They’re set to be married on Oct. 1, 2022.

Before Becoming A Country Artist, He Was A Worship Leader 

Although he later realized it wasn’t his calling, Allen served as a worship leader at a megachurch in Savannah, GA. It was this experienced that gave him his start with Christian music and these influences still bleed into his music today.

Jay Allen; Photo by Stephen Dillion
Jay Allen; Photo by Stephen Dillion

He has a Holiday Song Titled, “Christmas Everyday”

Following his emotional tribute to his mom in “Blank Stares,” Allen dropped his first-ever Christmas song, “Christmas Everyday” in 2020. This festive single was written by Rodney Atkins and Rose Falcon who are also featured on the project. At the time they sat down to write this song together, Allen was opening for them on the road. These artists quickly formed a friendship.

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Madeleine O’Connell graduated from North Central College with a bachelors degree in Journalism and Broadcast Communications before deciding to pursue her studies further at DePaul University. There, she earned her masters degree in Digital Communication & Media Arts. O’Connell served as a freelance writer for over two years while also interning with the Academy of Country Music, SiriusXM and Circle Media and assisting with Amazon Music’s Country Heat Weekly podcast. In addition to Country Now, she has been published in American Songwriter, Music Mayhem, and Holler.Country. Madeleine O’Connell is a member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.