Billy Gilman, Former Child Star Who Looking For Second Chance


16 years ago, a 12 year old boy with a high-pitched, falsetto voice, Billy Gilman grabbed the public's attention when his debut single, "One Voice" entered Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, became a Top 20 hit. On the Billboard Hot 100, the single peaking at number 38.

Gilman became the youngest person to chart a country hit, displacing Brenda Lee, the titleholder since 1957.

"One Voice", a song written by David Malloy and Don Cook. Released on 27 May 2000. The music video shows Billy Gilman on the bus home from school and watches everything that goes on around him.

Gilman not only led the nominees for the Billboard Music Video Awards but also swept four categories. The single "One Voice," won best country/new artist, contemporary Christian, contemporary Christian/new artist and jazz/AC/new artist clips. Gilman also nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Male Country Vocal Performance for "One Voice".

His debut album, also called One Voice contains easy listening country songs with powerful lyrics. An album that every family should have, every pre-teen should listen. It was released on 20 June 2000 on Epic Records, and was certified double platinum in the United States. The album included the title track "One Voice" and the follow-up singles Oklahoma and There's a Hero.

Billy Gilman's debut album, One Voice

Gilman was also on Charlotte Church's album Dream a Dream which released in October 2000. Gilman sings the title track "Dream a Dream" as a featured vocalist. The song was composed by James Shearman and Simon Greenaway based on the melody from Fauré's Pavane Op. 50 with lyrics by Sam Babenia.

Gilman released a Christmas album in October 2000, titled Classic Christmas. It was certified Gold by the RIAA. Warm and Fuzzy was released as a single. Gilman's second album Dare to Dream which released in May 2001 was also certified gold.

On 7 September and 10 September 2001, Gilman performed the song "Ben" at Michael Jackson: 30th Anniversary Celebration in New York. "Ben" was originally sung by Michael Jackson in 1972.

But... the peak of his career proved short-lived. After Dare to Dream, Gilman's voice began to noticeably change because of the onset of puberty. Epic Records eventually lost interest in him. 

His final album for Epic was released on 15 April 2003 and was entitled Music Through Heartsongs: Songs Based on the Poems of Mattie J.T. Stepanek. The tracks were based on poems written by the child poet Mattie Stepanek, a poet with muscular dystrophy who died in 2004, almost one year after the album's release.

Gilman never really leaves music. He continued to pursue his singing career after his amazing vocal performance back. In recent years, Gilman released a series of pop songs. Many of which he wrote, including “Falling,” “Red to Blue,” “Girl, It’s You,” “Summertime” and “Say You Will”. But has seen little radio airplay. 

In 2016, Gilman auditioned for season 11 of the US edition of The Voice. The emotional introduction piece showed him with his supportive parents. In the blind audition broadcast on 20 September 2016, Gilman sang Adele's song "When We Were Young". 

Gilman's performance impressed all four judges, Adam Levine, Miley Cyrus, Alicia Keys and Blake Shelton, people who know exactly what is going on in music business.

The Voice has always been a show about second chances. Many industry veterans have turned to the show for a career reboot. But no professional contestant has a story as interesting as that of Billy Gilman.