The April 15 episode of “The Masked Singer” is a special sing-along edition. It showcases past performances by the contenders for the Golden Mask. The lyrics of each song will be seen on screen, allowing viewers to join in. Three of the lucky seven celebrities still in the competition — the Astronaut, Night Angel and Turtle — were featured on the first quarter-final on April 8 (the other four compete in quarterfinal 2 on April 22).
Of this trio, the Astronaut was the one at risk of being eliminated when he ended up in a Smackdown with the Kangaroo; she lost and was revealed to be Jordyn Woods. The Astronaut won over the four judges (Ken Jeong, Jenny McCarthy, Nicole Scherzinger, Robin Thicke) with his version of “Bye Bye Bye” by NSYNC. Earlier in the show, he had tackled a hit from another teen idol, “If I Can’t Have You” by Shawn Mendes.
While the Astronaut has a great voice, he struggled to connect to these bubble-gum pop songs. We have figured out who he is and understand why these songs were out of his comfort zone. Keep reading if you want to know the name of the Astronaut as we have all “The Masked Singer” spoilers.
We are sure that the Astronaut is country singer Hunter Hayes.
On the April 8 episode, we got a glimpse inside the luggage of the Astronaut. So many of the items have a connection to Hunter. The little version of the White House refers to his 1999 appearance there when he was all of eight years old. The two versions of an airplane — toy and tattoo – tie in to his love of flying (he is a pilot and put a plane on an album cover). The accordion is one of the many instruments that Hunter plays. And the light bulb refers to his song “Light Me Up,” which he recorded for his 2011 debut album.
That self-titled disc went gold and platinum with sales of more than 1 million. As a group, “The Masked Singer” celebrities have released 88 gold albums. One of the tracks on that album is “Storm Warning”; in one of the clues videos, we see a shot of a warning sign.
The success of this album resulted in three Grammy nominations in 2013: Best New Artist, Best Country Album and Best Country Solo Performance. Hunter lost those races and as well as for his solo singing in 2014 and 2015. Collectively, the 18 contestants on “The Masked Singer” have amassed 69 Grammy Awards nominations.
The Astronaut told Nicole that they had performed together at a mall: Hunter and Nicole both performed on the 2015 PBS special, “A Capitol Fourth,” a concert on the National Mall to celebrate July 4th.
In one clues video, there is a shot of a wooden bridge; Hunter hails from Breaux Bridge, Louisiana. The Astronaut says he “started at a young age”; Hunter has been singing since he was two and was featured on “America’s Most Talented Kids.”
We see the Astronaut holding a record emblazoned with a map of the world that breaks. Hunter opened for The Flaming Lips at one of their record-setting eight concerts in a single day. We know that one of the 18 contestants on this season of “The Masked Singer” has an entry in the Guinness Book of World Records.
The Astronaut’s buddy, Bro Pilot, told us that he “took a huge nose dive and fell”; this happened to Hunter at a concert in 2013.
The Astronaut admitted that he needed to “start over”; Hunter had a huge hit in 2014 with the song “Nothing Like Starting Over.”
We saw a hologram version of the Astronaut. Hunter appeared in this form on the “Jimmy Kimmel Live” episode that followed the 2016 Country Music Awards.
The shot of coffee beans is a visual reference to Hunter’s hugely popular meet-ups with fans at coffee houses around the country.
In 2019, Hayes released the single “Wild Blue,” which is all about the great beyond. That song is from an album of the same name. Hunter has a follow-up out later this year which makes this high profile gig on “The Masked Singer” very well-timed.
We will only find out if we are right that Hunter Hayes is the Astronaut when he is unmasked. That will happen if he loses a showdown or wins the show. Do you think we are right about the real identity of the Astronaut? Sound off in the comments section with your best guesses.