And the Cringe Goes On: Kelly Clarkson Claims Her Ex-Husband Said She Wasn’t “Sexy” Enough to Be a Coach on ‘The Voice’

 Kelly Clarkson.
Kelly Clarkson.
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For today’s “Moment of Cringe,” we present to you this anecdote from inside Kelly Clarkson’s former marriage: Page Six reports that Clarkson claims her ex-husband Brandon Blackstock told her she wasn’t “sexy” enough to be a coach on The Voice. Clarkson—who won the first iteration of American Idol, which launched her 20-year career—said that she told Blackstock for years that she wanted to star on NBC’s The Voice, but he told her that network executives were “looking for a more sex symbol type.”

Rubbing salt in the wound, Blackstock also allegedly told Clarkson that NBC wanted “someone sexy” like Rihanna—and not his then-wife. Despite these loving comments said from a husband to a wife (heavy on the sarcasm), Clarkson did, in fact, land a coaching gig on the show in 2018.

Kelly Clarkson
Kelly Clarkson

Clarkson made the claim last year to a California labor commissioner, who ultimately ordered Blackstock to pay Clarkson $2.6 million for unlawfully procuring deals that should have been handled by her agents, Page Six reports. Clarkson also told the labor commissioner that Blackstock allegedly said NBC “had to have someone that was Black” and that Clarkson was “too similar” to Blake Shelton, who was already a long-running coach on the series.

When Clarkson’s lawyer Ed McPherson asked how she was able to recall this conversation, she replied “Well, a wife doesn’t forget a time she gets told she’s not a sex symbol, so that stays.”

Kelly Clarkson
Kelly Clarkson
Kelly Clarkson
Kelly Clarkson

Yet, despite what he said behind closed doors, Blackstock apparently told NBC executives in 2017 that they should hire Clarkson for The Voice, otherwise she’d join their rival show American Idol—a show where she obviously has a history. Clarkson told the court that Blackstock “mentioned that he got The Voice for her multiple times” and “he was proud of it.”

The California labor commissioner ruled in November that Blackstock overcharged Clarkson by $2,641,374 when he booked The Voice for her, as well as television appearances for Norwegian Cruise Lines, Wayfair, and the Billboard Music Awards. Blackstock has since filed an appeal on the decision and has not publicly responded to Clarkson’s claims.

Kelly Clarkson
Kelly Clarkson

This is but one chapter in the ongoing Clarkson/Blackstock divorce saga, which began in June 2020 after nearly seven years of marriage. After a contentious custody battle over their two children and ownership of their Montana ranch, they settled the case in March 2022—but, as evidenced by today, the cringe goes on. This month is also a milestone month for Clarkson in terms of her divorce from Blackstock, as Us Weekly reports that she was required to pay $115,000 monthly until January 2024 to Blackstock for spousal support, in addition to paying a one-time, tax-free fee of $1,326,161. And, despite having primary custody of their two kids, Clarkson also agreed to pay Blackstock $45,601 a month in child support until their kids reach the age of 18, graduate high school, or become self-supporting. (They are currently nine years old and seven years old.)

Kelly Clarkson
Kelly Clarkson

Clarkson—who now hosts her own eponymous talk show, thank you very much—told People that she is “taking my power back,” and is grateful for new beginnings: “Sometimes you don’t know what life has in store for you, and you think your life is going to go one way, and it’s okay that it doesn’t,” she said. “You never know how beautiful that might be.”