Austin Byars

It seems as though vocal lightning has struck the same neighborhood twice as a national spotlight shines down on two Union Grove singers.

Two years ago, 20-year-old Austin Byars was graduating from Brindlee Mountain High School and cheering on his friend, Brandon Elder, who was a contestant on “American Idol.”

Witnessing his friend’s success motivated Byars to continue to pursue his own artistic ambitions.

Byars started out this year singing from a stage he shared with Elder. Going into 2020, Byars was belting out cover songs with Elder on New Year’s Eve, and didn’t expect to be in that position himself by the end of this year.

For more on this story, please pick up Thursday’s Tribune or purchase an e-edition.

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