TORI KELLY ON SIMON COWELL KNOCKING HER DOWN

Tori Kelly



Tori Kelly covers the February issue of Seventeen (on newsstands tomorrow today). Rejection sucks, but without it, Tori Kelly wouldn’t be where she is today. The singer-songwriter reveals why she’s never lost sight of her dreams—or her smile.


Tori Kelly Quotes



On Simon Cowell deeming her voice “almost annoying” and being ousted before semifinals on American Idol: “Deep down, I knew I was good, and I knew I could do it. 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.”



On whether she and Ed Sheeran are more than friends: "I knew that was coming, but no. 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.”



On dealing with her manager saying she was boring: "He told me, “People are saying you are vanilla and that you have nothing to say.” 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.”



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