Idol Finalist Ayla Brown Performs at the Grand Ole Opry

“I remember thinking to myself, ‘If I ever got to perform at the Opry, then I’ll know I’ve made it,’” Ayla says.

“I remember thinking to myself, ‘If I ever got to perform at the Opry, then I’ll know I’ve made it,’” Ayla says.

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As a struggling country singer, former American Idol finalist Ayla Brown dreamed that one day she’d get the chance to stand on stage at the historic Grand Ole Opry in Nashville – and on May 25 that dream came true!

The 24-year-old, who made Idol’s top 16 in 2006, performed two songs from her new album, Heroes & Hometowns, on a bill that included country legend Vince Gill. And her proud papa, former Massachusetts senator Scott Brown, was in the audience to watch his little girl perform.

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“I have been working incredibly hard since moving to Nashville two years ago and this is proof that hard work really does pay off,” Ayla says.

The 6-foot tall brunette has been busy since leaving Idol, releasing four albums, playing basketball for the NCAA and singing the national anthem at Philadephia 76ers games, and says that her work ethic comes from her 53-year-old dad – “he’s the hardest worker I know!”

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Right now the former senator (who famously embarrassed his daughter on election night in 2010 by announcing she was “available”) is focused on a goal of his own – to join Ayla on stage one day. “He’s been taking guitar lessons and has been working really hard on my song ‘Pride of America,’” Ayla says.

That single will be released on July 4, so the former model (and Cosmopolitan magazine’s Sexiest Man of 1982) had better start brushing up on his chords!

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