Initially part of Usher’s team, singer Brittnee Camelle was stolen last week by Adam Levine after her memorable battle round performance with Melissa Jimenez. We talked to Camelle via phone this morning, and during our brief chat she brought a welcome sense of introspection and levity to the proceedings.
Here’s our Q&A, and if you want to follow Camelle on Twitter, go to @MissCamelle. Enjoy!
You exude strength and confidence in your performances. Did you learn that from your family or are those traits you’ve honed as a singer?
You know I would probably have to say a combination of both, and probably more so my family. Especially my mother just because she’s always taught me to be strong in everything that I do. I think just like growing up and having to deal with different type of situations I guess.
Like I kind of explained on the show, when I was growing up, I was teased a lot. I was given a lot of different crap (laughs). It really gave me a backbone to stand on and to not let the outside world bother me. I guess that does come across in my voice and in my performance because I want people to feel that when they watch me perform. That feeling of strength and confidence, because if I were to speak to a group of young girls right now, that would be the two things I would like teach them. I believe as a woman that’s very important. We’ve had so many hardships that we have overcome. We should be proud to be strong women and exude those traits.
I owe a lot of that to my mother and my father for raising me the way that they did. And also learning through life lessons.
What is an average week on The Voice like, with all the press, rehearsals, and performances that are part of your schedule?
We actually spend a lot of time just rehearsing. We get to meet with our coach and go over the new song and we get some time to get acquainted with the song before we go in with our couch. And then we take the pointers they give us and the pointers from our mentors and we get to go back to our hotel and practice it a million times. (laughs) We also get to have fun the choreographers. That’s always the most relaxed part. No nerves there. It’s just a moment when you can kind of let loose for a little while and really get involved physically with the song. I have to say we spend the majority of our time rehearsing our songs like a crazy person.
Number one, you don’t want to go on stage and forget the lyrics. And two, just getting so comfortable with it that when you walk out there it’s like second nature. So it’s really cool and it’s up and down. We always say that more than staying healthy physically, you have to stay healthy mentally. Not only are you nervous about everything that’s going to happen, but you have to be able to digest a lot of criticism and you have to incorporate what the coach and the mentor is telling you to do and incorporate that into who you already are. And be willing to grow. It’s definitely a roller coaster, but it’s a lot of fun.
During the battle rounds with Melissa Jimenez, we also spent time trying to get to know each other so our chemistry on stage would make sense.
That was the best battle round of the season, and that was a performance that could have gone the other way since you and Melissa are powerhouse vocalists.
That is tough, you do get close in the process and throughout all the rehearsals and just being a part of the experience you do get close. I think honestly it was just about embodying the song and owning our parts and also as a duo. For the moments we had to sing together we had to make sure that we became one. The moves and all that – Melissa is a great performer. She’s performed with a band for years which was (an advantage) over me because performing a live band, I’ve only had that pleasure a few times.
It was just about taking the time to become one on stage and convey the message of what the song was saying.
It was great seeing you take criticism from Jill Scott and Usher in a constructive way. Do you believe having a positive attitude is a huge part of the process?
When you’re in a such a life changing experience like this, I feel like it’s the best best (to have a positive attitude). Who’s to say that I’ll ever be able to sit in front of icons like Jill Scott, or Usher, and Adam Levine again and be able to take that criticism, or listen to what they have to say? When you want something in life, you don’t let it bury you. You take it and you say, “Well they definitely know what they’re talking about, because they’re already doing what I want to do.” I really just wanted to make them proud and transform it in the best way so they can see the growth.
I think this is what The Voice is all about. It’s about growth and to see the star that lives in all the contestants. I think we just need the right grooming and nurturing, and then we’re there.
There’s a lot of talk about The Voice family. Are you getting a sense of what that really means to you during this journey? The main goal is to win The Voice, but the longer term goal is to nurture one’s career.
That is true. It would be wonderful to win the show, don’t get me wrong! But you’re right, I have to say we grow so close because we spend so much time with each other and we’re away from our families for long periods of time and really at the end of the day, all we have is each other. We’re going through this experience together. We have our ups and downs and sometimes we need to cry just to get the stress out.
Sometimes we just need someone we can laugh with and for a second just forget about what we’re doing – just so we can breathe. II’ve created some of the greatest friendships that I have ever experienced (on The Voice). I know that no matter where the end of our journey comes on the show, I will always have them as supporters and they will always have me.
It’s like one big network and I know that Melissa, when she puts out new music, I will be her number one supporter. Or any of the ladies that I have grown close with. I will make sure that we all stay connected. It is all about what you take from The Voice.
The Voice airs tonight (8 pm et/pt) and Tuesday night (8 pm et/pt) on NBC. To check out my interview with Patrick Thomson, who was stolen last week and is now on Team Shakira, check out my post on Deepest Dream.
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posted by Greg Srisavasdi