'The Voice' Contestant Nolan Neal Opens Up About His Heartbreaking Past In His Blind Audition

There's nothing worse than watching a talented artist get passed over by The Voice coaches. But none has been more painful than when zero of the four The Voice coaches hit their buttons for Nolan Neal. The 35-year-old sang Incubus's "Drive" in the Blind Auditions and, despite his obvious awesomeness, failed to get any of the coaches' chairs to turn. This is truly a travesty to the show because, as he was able to prove after the coaches made their decisions, Neal is truly a talented artist whose voice deserves to be heard.

I'll go on about Neal's awesomeness in a second — but first, we need to talk about the Nashville native's touching story. Neal opened up about a very tough time in his life in his The Voice introduction. A few years ago, he lost his father to suicide. But the toughest part of his story is the details of his last conversation with his dad. The last thing Neal's father said to him was how he never stayed on his recording contracts for long. Neal then hung up the phone and ignored his father's last few calls. After his father's death, he ended up dropping a recording contract he had signed with Virgin Records and entered into rehab.

Neal did not have to open up about his story, but I'm so glad he did. Now that he's six years sober, he's a true success story of overcoming trauma and addiction. Neal is now using his past as a catalyst to pursue his career, and will be more successful because of it.

Unfortunately, though, The Voice is not where he will find success. Chalk it up to poor song choice, but Neal failed to impress the coaches with his initial Blind Audition. He did impress them after, when he was given the chance to sing again to show off his true potential, but it was too late. In Christina Aguilera's words "We suck, you don't." The coaches begged him to come back — but something tells me he won't have to. Neal already had success pre- The Voice as the unofficial lead singer of the band Hinder, among other projects. And now he's making it on his own. Neal is working on his first solo album, clearly proving to the coaches that he can do just fine without them.

Image: Trae Patton/NBC