Country Throwback: 14-Year-Old Carrie Underwood Belts Martina McBride’s ‘A Broken Wing’

by Quentin Blount
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Years before Carrie Underwood was a country music superstar, she was the winner of American Idol and other talent shows even before that.

By this point, it’s a well-known fact that before Underwood was the megastar she is now, she won first place on season four of American Idol. She did so by charming the judges and audiences with her sweet, southern personality.

What’s even more incredible is that years before she became the American Idol country sweetheart, the then 14-year-old Underwood took the stage at the 1998 Miss Westark Pageant in Fort Smith, Oklahoma. It was there where she graced the stage with a cover of the Martina McBride hit, “A Broken Wing.”

Looking back, it’s easy to see now how Underwood would go on to become a country star. In fact, it’s hard to imagine that her impressive cover of McBride’s song as a freshman in high school would sound all that different should she perform it again today. Even at just 14, Underwood clearly had the talent and the voice to hit the notes that made McBride’s version so popular.

Meanwhile, it’s possible that the best part of watching her performance from 22 years ago is knowing that just seven years later in 2005, Underwood would be accepting the award for the best new country artist at the Academy of Country Music awards. Have a look at the incredible performance below:

Carrie Underwood Wins Season 4 of American Idol

Little did Underwood know that her life would change forever at the young age of just 21 years old.

The young singer stepped into the audition room prior to the start of season four bright-eyed and innocent. She stepped out with a “golden ticket” to Hollywood. She was just a farm girl from Oklahoma who was on the verge of being one of the biggest stars in music of this generation. There’s no doubt that just getting to Hollywood was a nerve-racking experience for the singer. But she put her fears aside to chase her dream of stardom.

During her time on the show, the country star performed a variety of songs in her signature voice. It was evident that she continued to grow stronger and more confident on stage with each passing week.

And finally, on May 25, 2005, Underwood was named the season four winner of American Idol. In the video below, American Idol host Ryan Seacrest stands with the two finalists, Underwood and “Bo” Bice Jr. Seacrest opens the envelope and announces that Underwood has indeed won the contest.

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