Many Iowans Have Known For Years That Maddie Poppe Is A Star [PHOTOS/VIDEOS]
Clarksville, Iowa's Maddie Poppe is in the Top 7 on American Idol! Let that soak in for a moment. The Butler County town is only 87 miles from Cedar Rapids and has a population of just 1,439. Yes, this is the stuff of dreams. However, for Maddie, and what seems like the entire state of Iowa that's behind her... this is very real. It's also pretty darn awesome.
The world has become acquainted with Maddie's amazing voice and wonderful personality over the last couple months on the ABC show, but there are plenty of people who knew Maddie was special long before the world discovered her.
The picture below is from June of 2013 at the Butler County Fair in Allison, Iowa. 'The Chocolate Crackers' opened for Restless Heart that night. The band featured Maddie's dad, Trent, and he brought Maddie out to show off that voice. My friend, Dave Kroeger, took the picture and labeled it "Great voice." That night she sang the Janis Joplin hit, "Me and Bobby McGee."
The following summer, Maddie performed for RAGBRAI.
You may remember that Maddie's dad Trent showed up on American Idol with her earlier this season. He appeared at the end of this song, though he might like to forget it. :)
In 2016 when the Butler County Fair rolled around, Maddie had the stage to herself. My friend Jeff Kolb, one of Maddie's biggest supporters, took this picture.
Last year, she performed for RAGBRAI again. Not just once, though. Maddie followed the route and played at every single stop.
Jeff Kolb also wrote this about Maddie on his Facebook page a couple weeks ago. I asked him if I could share it because I think it perfectly describes why Clarksville, and all of Iowa, is cheering and voting for her.
I cannot express how much pride and love I have for our hometown girl, Maddie Poppe. Yes, her performances on Idol have been nothing but perfection. All of America is starting to see her personality, passion, and her genuine love for her music and care for others that we here in little ole Clarksville have known for several years. I will never forget the night several years ago I was running sound for a school fine arts program when little Maddie was going to perform a duet with her older sister Hannah Poppe who had been performing in school concerts in the past. I was in awe of their performance and the unique vocal style that this little girl added. Hannah alone was very talented. This the first time I had ever heard Maddie sing, and I think this was her first public performance. Now, several years later, I have seen her take the time to visit with and perform for young kids in countless schools all across our part of Iowa and share a positive inspiring message that you can follow your dreams and do anything you put your mind to. She is very grounded even with the success she has experienced to this point in her young career. As one of the judges said on Sunday night... she is the "all American girl". All I ask is that everyone reading this, watch the video I shared with this post from last night, then starting this Sunday, you can help her continue to live out this dream by casting your vote for her on the American Idol App. Our messed up world needs more like her. Kids these days don't have many celebrities to look up to that we as adults can feel good about, but Maddie is worthy of our support and every bit of success she has already experienced, and all that is yet to come in her future.
Sunday night, she has a chance to make the Top 5! However this story ends, the cost of Maddie Poppe t-shirts will likely be going up. Then again, knowing Maddie, she may never raise them.