Way back in 1991 when country was in a peak, so was young LeAnn Rimes.
And in a final battle on Star Search, at a mere 8 years old, LeAnn used her incredible vocal range to beat out a boy over 3 years her senior at the time.
Star Search was a television show that ran for over a decade in the ’80s and ’90s and searched for young talent in a range of categories from dancing to singing to comedy. After auditioning, two contestants in each category would battle it out on the live stage, with one typically being the champion from the previous week’s competition.
In an almost Shirley-Temple like look with her blonde curls and cute matching outfit, LeAnn took to the stage and gave one of the best vocal performances you will ever hear. And she was no stranger to classic country. For her Challenger song, she chose Marty Robbins 1961 release “Don’t Worry,” and she hit every note with ease.
Even though she took the win with a ¾ point star advantage, she also displayed a lot of class for a kid of her age when she kept her competitor, Levi Garrett, on stage and didn’t let him walk off defeated.
LeAnn and Levi had meet in an earlier competition before Star Search and previously performed together on a duet of Hank Williams’ “Hey Good Lookin’,” and Levi referred to LeAnn as:
“The best little girl singer in the world I’ve ever heard.”
Little LeAnn also remembered their previous encounter, but a bit differently:
“We sang ‘Hey Good Lookin.’ I went up to Levi and asked him if he wanted to do it with me and he said, ‘well I don’t know, I’ll probably forget the words.”
After LeAnn was deemed the winner of their sing-off, Levi even said that he would be back the next week to root for her.
And after watching this sing-off you really can’t help but root for the young LeAnn.
At just 8 years old, I’d put her up against almost anyone in the industry today for her stripped-down vocal expertise.