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By Krista

Interview with singers from "The Voice" on NBC 10/21/15



Moderator: Shauna Wynne
October 21, 2015 1:00 pm CT

Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by. Welcome to the Voice Advancing Artists Press and Media Conference Call. During the presentation all participants will be in a listen-only mode. We will conduct a question and answer session.

At that time, if you have a question, please press the 1 followed by the 4 on your telephone. If at any time during the conference you need to reach an operator, please press star 0.

As a reminder, this conference is being recorded Wednesday, October 21, 2015. I would now like to turn the conference over to Shauna Wynne. Please go ahead.

Shauna Wynne: Hi everyone. Thanks for joining our call today. Again, it will be recorded. So if youíd like a transcript please email me. Joining us today from Team Adam we have Shelby Brown. From Team Blake we have Emily Ann Roberts and Nadjah Nicole. From Team Pharrell we have Amy Vachal, Darius Scott, and Morgan Frazier. Summer Schappell from Team Gwen is currently not on the line, however Iíll let you know if she joins.

Out of respect for all journalists queuing up, please only ask one question at a time and also please designate an artist to answer your question first if youíre asking to the general group. I will now turn the call over to the question and answer section.

Operator: Thank you. Ladies and gentlemen, if you would like to register a question, please press the 1 followed by the 4 on your telephone. You will hear a three-toned prompt to acknowledge your request.

If your question has been answered and you would like to withdraw your registration, please press the 1 followed by the 3. If youíre using a speakerphone, please lift your handset before entering your request.

One moment please for the first question.

And our first question comes from the line of (Joshua Maloney) from Niagara Frontier Publications. Please proceed with your question.

Joshua Maloney: Thank you. My question is for Amy. Amy, how are you today?

Amy Vachal: Hi (Joshua). Good. How are you?

Joshua Maloney: Good, thank you. So Pharrell comes up to you and he tells you Iím putting you up against not one but two talented singers. Iím wondering what is the thought process. And it was a really good performance. How did it come together as well as it did?

Amy Vachal: Well, we went through - my mentality changed throughout from the start of finding out that I was singing against not one but two people for this duet - singing a duet with a duet. At first I was like - I was excited by it because Iím still getting used to this whole battle mentality, that thereís a winner and a loser at the end of each of these rounds.

So at first I was really excited, and then once we started digging into it I realized just how challenging it actually was going to be, especially because not only our - thereís two of them and one of me, but we come from very different backgrounds and our styles are very different.

But I eventually came to embrace the challenge, and I think we all realize that this is an opportunity. It was a little bit weird that we were paired together. It was an opportunity to make something unique and new. So ultimately Iím grateful that we had this unique challenge.

Joshua Maloney: Okay, thanks. Good luck to you.

Amy Vachal: Thank you.

Operator: And ladies and gentlemen, just to let you know that from Team Gwen Summer Schappell has now joined the conference as well. And our next question comes from the line of (Mark Franklin) from Voice Views. Please proceed with your question.

Mark Franklin: Summer got there just in time because Iíd like to hear from the three singers we didnít get to see last night. Summer that would be you, Nadjah, and Darius. Basically Iíd like each of you to tell us what we missed -- how you felt about your song, your strategy going into the battle, and what you think you might have turned the tide in your favor. And if we could start off with Nadjah, please...

Nadjah Nicole: Hi, Nadjah. So at first we got our songs - when I found out I was paired with Cole it was pretty cool because Iíve never really done a duet before. And I had to first learn how to really connect with my partner and Cole was such an easygoing guy and so talented that he made it really easy to work together.

And then the song - it was surprising because not only was it a Britney Spears song, but then to do the Ed Sheeran cover of it - it was a little awkward at first because I didnít know how to approach it. But because Cole played guitar, it was a lot easier to work things out vocally with him and harmonies and everything.

So during the battle you just saw me move around the stage more. You saw us connect, looking at each other, working with each other on the stage. Vocally it was such an honor to work with Cole because he has such a beautiful voice. And he definitely challenged me because I donít have a very big voice. Iím not like in your face and Coleís voice - when pushed he has a very strong voice. So I had to make sure that I was on his level and as well as him blending with me. He had to make sure that we blended well.

So even though I won, I will say that we both won in a sense because we both learned something from each other. And I think the end result was pretty cool. If you listen to the recorded version on YouTube, I think it sounds beautiful. And thatís pretty much it.

Mark Franklin: And what do you think actually turned the tide in your favor?

Nadjah Nicole: Iím sorry? I didnít hear what you said.

Shauna Wynne: (Mark), can you repeat yourself, please?

Mark Franklin: Nadjah, I was just asking you to finish that by telling me what you think turned the tide in your favor.

Nadjah Nicole: I guess the only thing that I could say would be experience, vocally. Heís sixteen, seventeen and Iím twenty-four and Iíve been doing this a lot longer. I think that - I canít say that Iím better or heís better because weíre both great artists. Weíre both great singers. But if anything, I guess maybe it was that Iím more experienced.

Mark Franklin: Okay. Thank you very much. And then if we could go to Summer, please.

Summer Schappell: Hi there.

Mark Franklin: Hi.

Summer Schappell: Well, I sang with Hannah Ashbrook. We sang ďLeave the PiecesĒ by The Records. And I think a lot of people thought that maybe because it was more of a country song and it was more in my wheelhouse, yes, that I maybe had more of an edge. But Hannah actually has this way with making a song her own and sheís an indie artist. So she made it sound incredible and I was so nervous singing with her.

And she just brought so much to the table and it really freaked me out. And I think we really, really kicked some butt on that song. And I wish you all could have seen it.

But I think, I guess, your question - what was the question about why - what was your last question about? Why you think I won or...

Mark Franklin: Yes. What type of feedback you got and why do you think you were ultimately picked as the singer to advance?

Summer Schappell: Well, I think - this is really hard because Hannah and I both were - did really well and sheís such a great singer. But I think with me I was a little more confident and I think that showed. And in our rehearsals, Gwen had both talked to us about how we need to connect more emotionally to the songs. And I think my confidence showed more on stage and I think thatís maybe why Gwen had chose me.

Mark Franklin: Okay, thank you very much. And then if we could go to Darius, please. Can you tell us about...

Darius Scott: Hi. So I battled against Daria Jasmine and we had a very simple song, but we all know that sometimes the simple things can make things really difficult. And we had the Bill Withers song ďLean on Me,Ē and while the song really only has three or four chords, itís how to sing it and share it that me and Daria had the most fun figuring out.

I think Dariaís a consummate performer. I donít have the - Iím pretty shy, so I donítí have the same confidence level that Daria has. And that was one of the critiques that you guys didnít get to see last night, that Pharrell really wanted me to dig in and connect more to the song. And it wasnít - for me it wasnít that I had trouble connecting with the song. It was a little more I was a little shy about it all.

But to answer your question as to why I - why the tide swung in my favor, I think I just decided once I got my original critiques from Pharrell - I decided to dive in from, I guess -- to echo Nadjahís point -- from the place of experience. And Iíve been singing that song for so long that I just had to remember that itís just like any other time I sing a song.

And thatís the way I approached it. You hear in the record I kind of sang pretty true to the melody except for toward the end of the song when the band was wrapping up. And I just decided in that moment to have fun with it and I think Pharrell was pretty pleased with me being willing to break out of my little shy shell. And I think thatís one of the reasons he chose me.

Mark Franklin: Okay, thank you very much. Congratulations to all three of you and best of luck moving forward.

Darius Scott: Thank you.

Summer Schappell: Thank you.

Operator: And our next question comes from the line of (Earl Dittman) with Digital Journal. Please proceed with your question.

Earl Dittman: Hi, this is for Shelby. Just wanted to talk to you a little bit about the interaction between you, Adam, and John Fogerty. How much did John contribute to - or what was the best lesson John - or advice he gave you during your time with him?

Shelby Brown: I think a lot of what they wanted to work on with me was my confidence, especially not just with the song but - I expressed that I was worried about the timing. And John Fogerty uses a lot of his own personal experiences to teach. I found that out.

And so he told a couple stories, but made me feel a little bit better that heís so successful and he is the legend that he is. And heís messed up and heís dealt with the same things that I have. So he was very reassuring and Iím really thankful that I got to learn from him.

Earl Dittman: What would be the most surprising thing - we know a lot about Adam as a person from the show and as a performer. What would you think would be the most surprising thing youíve learned about him as a person after all the time you spent with him? Something you would have never thought about. Like gosh, I never thought he would have been like that. Or something really quirky he does.

Shelby Brown: Heís definitely a major man child to be around, but when it comes to music heís extremely passionate and heís extremely serious. And the manís very smart and he knows what heís talking about. And I really appreciate the opportunity to work with him.

Earl Dittman: Yes, thatís fantastic. Well congratulations and keep up the great work.

Shelby Brown: Thank you.

Earl Dittman: Thanks so much.

Operator: And our next question comes from the line of (Jeff Dodge) with Please proceed with your question.

Jeff Dodge: Yes. My question is for Emily Ann Roberts. How are you?

Emily Ann Roberts: Hi, Iím good. How are you?

Jeff Dodge: Iím doing good. ON the show last night it was mentioned -- I donítí know if it was Adam or someone else -- that your battle pairing was about youth versus experience. So how do you think that factored into everything?

Emily Ann Roberts: Well, I think definitely that was a major factor. Morgan is absolutely incredible and she is so much more experienced than I am. And just because sheís been doing this for so much longer and - but I think that it honestly helped me. I learned so much from Morgan throughout the whole experience too and I think it made me go at it even harder just because it was a challenge, if that makes sense.

Jeff Dodge: Yes. Great. Well you sounded great last night, so good luck going forward.

Emily Ann Roberts: Thank you so much.

Jeff Dodge: Thank you.

Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, as a reminder, to register for a question please press the one followed by the four on your telephone. And our next question comes from the line of Krista Chain from The TV MegaSite. Please proceed with your question.

Krista Chain: Yes. My question is for Amy. Going - youíve already spoken about it some, but how a challenge it was to work with Jubal and Amanda. But can you talk a little bit about how you felt going into the battle as far as - did you feel like your voice would be overshadowed by theirs? Or how did you feel going into the battles?

Amy Vachal: Well, throughout the process of preparing for the battles thereís a lot of changes that you want to make for your own performance. And on their end, there were constantly changes that they wanted to make too. So trying to screw those together to make a cohesive performance was - added an extra difficulty. And how were we going to make this cohesive? How were we going to make this sound good?

And in the process of that at times I felt like it was extra hard for someone like me who tends to want to attack a song like this from a more stripped down, soulful kind of way. And so in trying to create this hybrid between our two styles, the arrangement of this song really required me to step up in volume, particularly.

So going into the actual battle day I had put in the work. I had sweat over this song like you wouldnít believe. I was as ready as I was going to be. So I knew that whatever the outcome would be - I knew that I had given it all I had.

So yes, thatís basically what was going through my head right before I stepped up.

Krista Chain: Well congratulations and good luck.

Shelby Brown: Thank you so much.

Operator: And our next question comes from the line of (Regina Frega) from Jar Radio. Please proceed with your question.

Regina Frega: Yes. My question is for Darius Scott. First of all, congratulations to all of you all and thank you for allowing us to be on this call today. Darius -- okay. You being a Texas native and you being on the same team with Madi Davis, how does it feel to know that youíre going to have to be going up against her soon?

Darius Scott: Well, I want to correct it. Iím not exactly from Texas. I live there now. Iím from Atlanta.

Regina Frega: Youíre considered a Texan now.

Darius Scott: I know. Iíve been there for a year, but my parents - they get on me all the time. Make sure you tell them youíre from Atlanta. But Madi and I are very close. We - her parents I know just look out for me because they picked me out of the crowd as the shy one. So they - so when I was afraid to talk to people, Madi and her mom would just make me talk, even on days when I was just really nervous to talk to people.

So itís nerve-wracking. Like you never want to go against someone if you care about - and throughout this process, sheís not the only one. There were several people that I was terrified about going against. So itís a little bit crazy knowing that potential is there and I donít really know to say it. Weíre very close and we never wanted to (unintelligible) when you get close.

Regina Frega: So whenever - so has Pharrell given you all any tips on how to work through those times when youíre battling against someone youíre so close to? Like has he helped you all and what tips has he given you all?

Darius Scott: Iím going to be honest. There havenít really been any tips on how to deal with the whole battling thing. At the end of the day we all recognize that itís a competition. So itís - as hard as that may sound, itís still a competition and at some point someoneís going to go home that you really care about.

And Iím sure there are other artists in the competition that can attest to that fact. Mark and Celeste had to go against each other. Itís just you hate to see that, but at the end of the day this is the game we signed up to play. So I would be super sad if I went up against Madi, but I think we both understand that itís a competition. And while I donít even want to think about that because itís really sad, itís something that weíve thought about and something that weíve talked about. So yes, I (unintelligible) answer for it.

Regina Frega: Awesome. Thank you so much.

Darius Scott: No, thank you.

Regina Frega: And good luck.

Darius Scott: Thank you.

Operator: And our next question comes from the line of (Mark Franklin) from Voice Views. Please proceed with your question.

Mark Franklin: Yes, my question was for Morgan and Emily. I was wondering if the two of you were surprised at all to be paired together and how each of you tried to stand out from the other. And if we could start with you, Emily.

Emily Ann Roberts: Honestly I...

Shauna Wynne: You know what? Emily, Iím so sorry. Would it be okay if we started with Morgan? Because I know she actually has to jump off the call fairly soon.

Emily Ann Roberts: Oh yes, thatís fine.

Shauna Wynne: Is that alright? Okay, thanks.

Emily Ann Roberts: Yes, thatís fine.

Mark Franklin: Okay, who are we talking to then?

Shauna Wynne: Weíll start with Morgan.

Mark Franklin: Okay. Alright, fine. Morgan?

Morgan Frazier: I definitely think - sorry, this is Morgan. I definitely think that whenever - gosh. Me and Emily didnít meet until I guess the blinds - after the blinds. Iíd always seen her around the hotel but I hadnít truly talked to her and stuff like that. So once I met her after the blinds and we were both on Team Blake, I was like - I actually told her, ďWhat do you want to bet that we get - weíre going to get battled together?Ē

And sheís like oh, yes, totally. Iím like yes, I foresee it. And so when we were all sitting in the room and they were telling us who we were going against, it was no surprise to me and I think Emily.

Mark Franklin: Then (unintelligible) battle to stand apart and how were you feeling once she was announced the winner?

Emily Ann Roberts: This is Emily. Was that question for me or Morgan?

Mark Franklin: That was for Morgan. I wanted to know what - it was part of the original question, what she tried to do to stand apart.

Morgan Frazier: I think that I just wanted to really go up there and just be myself, and make the performance the best that it could be. And that was my strategy for it because I wanted me and Emily to go through so bad. And so I really wasnít like thinking like what am I going to do to win this battle? I was thinking letís make this the best performance that it could possibly be.

Mark Franklin: Okay, thank you very much and congratulations on moving forward. And then if we could go to Emily, please.

Emily Ann Roberts: Hey, this is Emily. Iím here.

Mark Franklin: Okay. So first of all, were you surprised to be paired with her - with Morgan? And then what did you do to try to stand out during the performance?

Emily Ann Roberts: I donít think it was a huge shock to be paired with Morgan just because we both sing country music and weíre two blonde country singers. I thought it wasnít that big of a surprise that we would be together. And we had actually talked about it.

So it wasnít a huge shock to me, but I think definitely like she said, we were mainly focused on putting on the best performance that we could do and making that song the best it could be just because if we had fun and we were content with our performance, we were going to be happy for whoever won. Me and Morgan have become so close over this whole experience.

So I think the main focus was just putting on the best performance we could.

Mark Franklin: Okay, thank you very much. Congratulations to both of you.

Emily Ann Roberts: Thank you.

Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, as a reminder, to register for a question please press the 1 followed by the 4 on your telephone.

And we have another question from the line of (Jeff Dodge) from Please proceed with your question.

Jeff Dodge: Yes. Is Morgan still on the call?

Operator: She just dropped off.

Jeff Dodge: Oh, okay.

Shauna Wynne: (Jeff), if you want you can email me and Iíll get your questions to her.

Jeff Dodge: Okay, thank you.

Operator: And our next question comes from the lien of (Mark Franklin) from Voice Views. Please proceed with your question.

Mark Franklin: Okay. This question is for Shelby. Are you there, Shelby?

Shelby Brown: Hi.

Mark Franklin: Hi. So you wound up singing a rock song against a rock singer who had fronted a band for a long time. So Iím wondering how you went about that and what you did to counter that, and how you think you improved over the course of the battle.

Shelby Brown: I think my mindset the entire time was - yes, this is a rock song and yes, Amandaís a rock singer. But Iím a country singer and I sing the way I sing. And Iím just going to sing this song how I would sing this song on any other day. And I just went out there and I stayed true to myself, and I worked on my confidence. Thatís the biggest improvement I think I made because I just knew before that - I was like I donít know how this is going to end up. I just know one thing at that stage. I just shut all the negativity out of my brain and I just stayed true to myself and I was Shelby on stage. And I think that was evident to Adam.

Mark Franklin: Okay. Well it turned out very well. Congratulations and best of luck moving forward.

Shelby Brown: Thank you.

Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, as a reminder, to register for a question please press the 1 followed by the 4.

And Ms. Wynne there are no further questions.

Shauna Wynne: Alright everyone. Thanks for joining. Again, if youíd like a transcript, you can email me. Thanks everyone. Enjoy the rest of your day.

Darius Scott: Thank you.

Woman: Bye-bye. Love you. Thank you.

Woman: Bye.

Woman: Bye.

Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, that does conclude the call for today. We thank you for your participation and ask that you please disconnect your lines. Have a great day.


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