Judges Laugh While Contestant Comes On Stage But As He Begins Singing Audience Breaks Out Into Applause

ByQuyen Anne

Jan 18, 2024

“The X Factor” is a popular show that is watched all over the world. It is a television music competition that was created by Simon Cowell and got its popularity in the United Kingdom where it first aired in 2004. Contestants of “The X Factor” are there not only to hopefully win a recording contract but to gain popularity just by appearing on the show. Many contestants go on to become popular artists after winning.

When 17-year-old Willie Jones from Louisiana walked on stage to audition back in 2012, all the judges started to laugh, but it didn’t take long until they were totally caught off guard by the young man’s voice.

Be sure to reach the end of this article to see the full video 🙂 

When Willie Jones went on the US show, the 17-year-old was able to get the judges to laugh pretty much immediately. His demeanor was one that the judges took a liking to right away. However, they were not at all ready for the sound that was going to come out of his mouth.

Jones caught everyone off guard when the song started. Not only was the live studio audience shocked, but you could also see that the judges had no idea what was happening. That’s because Jones began to belt out an amazing country song. Jones was able to sing the song with a perfect southern twang and pitch. The judges couldn’t believe what they were hearing as Jones stood on the stage and belted out his tune. They exchanged disbelieving looks as he continued to wow the audience with his perfect voice. They knew that he would just have to go on to the next round for sure!

Simon Cowell is well known for telling it like it is. He does not hold back when he talks to contestants, even when his words are something they may not want to hear. However, he absolutely loved the voice he was hearing and was ready to tell Jones what he thought.

“You’ve gone beyond my expectations, you’ve surprised me,” Simon said. “I think your voice is a sensational recording voice and I want to remember this time, the first time I heard Willie Jones—this is a day to remember.”


It’s been eight years since Jones first sang the line of the hit Josh Turner song, “Your Man:” “Baby, lock the doors and turn the lights down low,” on “The X Factor” stage. Although he was a popular contestant and won over lots of hearts allowing him to progress in the competition, he was eventually eliminated. His musical journey didn’t end there though.

According to the Boot, the 26-year-old “blends country music topics and cadences with the confessional, first-person styling of underground hip-hop.” This gives his sound a new genre that has is almost entirely unique to him and is captivating to listen to.

Jones currently lives in Shreveport, something he is very proud of, but travels to LA frequently to make his music and work with producers. Jones was also part of a Netflix original reality show called “Chasing Cameron,” which centers around the life of social media influencer, Cameron Dallas, members of music group Magcon, and Willie Jones himself, the Shreveport Times reports.

Speaking to the Shreveport Times, Jones spoke about what life has been like since he was on “The X Factor.” “It’s changed a lot. People know who I am now. With the notoriety comes opportunity,” he said.

He continued, “You can’t get big-headed and let it go to your head. Especially with me on ‘X Factor,’ my audition went viral so fast and everybody to this day still know about it… I was fresh out of high school and I’ve been in the industry since then and have seen people change. I feel I’ve changed too, but they’ve changed in a negative light, letting the lights and notoriety get to them. I’d say a valuable lesson is to stay humble, stay nice and your opportunities will just fall into your lap.”

He knows how lucky he has been, and he puts this down to his motivation and determination, stating, “A lot of people go on those shows and give up because they didn’t win. It’s super easy to be discouraged—I was discouraged when I lost X Factor. But with God and my family and keeping my head up and hitting the ground running.”

He spoke fondly about his hometown in his interview, explaining, “The Southern hospitality in Louisiana is something that definitely has been instilled in me and something my mother beat into me. It’s one thing that makes me and my friends who are southern out here in LA in the music industry stand out. We are respectable young men and women.”

Splitting his life between Shreveport and LA has its ups and downs as Jones revealed: “When I’m in LA I Uber a lot, so when I’m in Shreveport I like to drive. Sometimes I just drive to clear my mind. And, of course, I miss my family, friends, the bar— I miss a lot because there’s only one Louisiana, and the culture out here and out there are totally different.”

Jones is also a big fan of seeing black artists create a space in the country music scene, something that is close to his heart.

“It’s something I wanted to see since I started singing country music at age 14. More people like me with different kinds of stories, telling their stories with music. With Kane Brown, Lil Nas X, and this other guy Blanco Brown … Priscilla Renea is doing her thing. Her last album, Colored … is crazy. It’s cool to see black people come in and add their swag, and their twang, to country music,” he revealed to the Boot.

As for the aspirations Jones has for the future, his intentions are very clear. He said, “My goal is to just put out dope music. I don’t know if I want to be signed or do it independently. But just make dope music, tour the world with my music and eventually get into clothing… And just staying in the music industry and inspiring people to do better. This is my life, this is my art.”

Jones is content with his life as he’s exactly where he wants to be, “I’m slowly seeing my dreams come true right before my eyes and it’s pretty cool,” he concluded. It’s incredible to see people follow their dreams and make it despite the obstacles they face. You can watch Willie’s audition below, to see how it all started out!

What did you think of his performance? Did you think it was spectacular? Feel free to leave your comment and remember to pass this on to others who love to witness raw talent!

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