Lewiston musician Shania Rales made it through the first round of tryouts for TV’s “American Idol,” held last weekend in Spokane.

Rales, 25, known for her raw voice and acoustic sound, was one of several musicians selected to go on to the next level of auditions.

Reached by phone Tuesday, Rales said she has been advised by the show’s producers not to comment on the contest or what happens next.

But she could say: “I had a really good time. I went in a line all day and met a lot of cool people.”

The tryouts currently being staged will be part of the 18th season of “American Idol,” which is expected to start airing in early 2020.

Rales said last weekend was the third time she’d tried out for “American Idol” and the seventh contest she’s entered so far.

The 2012 Orofino High School graduate won the Kooskia Old Opera House Theatre American Idol contest in 2012, receiving a trip to audition for “American Idol” in Oklahoma City that year. In Oklahoma City, she won a golden ticket to the second round but later missed her performance date because of a miscommunication. Since then, she’s tried out for “America’s Got Talent” and “The Voice.”

Her ultimate goal?

“I’d love to just play music for a living,” Rales said. “I’d like to travel around and make albums.”

Currently, she plays as often as she can wherever she can find a venue.

“I try to play every weekend, Friday and Saturday, anywhere I can get my hands on — bars, weddings, parties, restaurants, wherever.”

When she’s not playing music, she works at Rogers Dodge in Lewiston.

Rales said she’s mainly self-taught, but was inspired to play music by her mother and grandmother, both now deceased, who loved music. She describes her style as acoustic, soft rock and pop, and she plays mainly covers.

“I do have a few originals, but I don’t play them too often,” Rales said. “I’m still perfecting on my writing skills.”

Hedberg may be contacted at kathyhedberg@gmail.com or (208) 983-2326.

Recommended for you